In an ever growing list of Facebook games tailored directly to the female demographic (Mall World, It Girl, etc.), yet another has appeared on our radar. Popping up on one of our recent emerging apps list, a game by the name of Totally Spies! Fashion Agents, from OUAT Entertainment, has been doing quite well in recent weeks, boasting an MAU that is closing in on 1.2 million and a DAU of over 143,000.
A sort of treasure hunting fashion game, Totally Spies is a hodgepodge of social gaming concepts intended appeal to the younger female audience. Using elements from games like Treasure Isle, virtual spaces, It Girl, automated fighting games, and a handful of other games, one might think the game a bit bloated. Surprisingly, however, all the elements work together in such a way that the game modes are constantly changing, and it never really gets too boring, despite repetitive core mechanics.
Part of the reason the range of game modes works is because they’re based off a real animated series, Totally Spies!. The show is about three high school girls that are actually super spies, complete with “girly” James Bond’esque gadgets (e.g. a blow drier gun). Players take on this same role as “WOOHP” agents attempting to save the world, while still trying to be “normal” teenagers. Since there are more game modes than average, perhaps the best starting point is the spy missions themselves.
Missions come, randomly, via a WOOHP gadget called a “compowder” (a powder makeup container that’s actually a holo-phone) and are whisked away to a Treasure Isle-style map. Rather than digging up tiles, however, players are presented with crates, enemies, and an objective. Everything is interacted with via clicking, and players must locate a key to unlock a door that leads to the mission objective (save a kid, stop a bomb, etc.). Thus far, missions have not been more complicated than this.
For each element interacted with, players consume energy (that recharges over time), but will gain bonuses such as experience, coin, or extra energy. It’s simple, but there is some gratification in discovering the bonuses and watching the cartoonish scuffle with bad guys. This element lacks the collection aspect that comes with the treasure hunting games, but it does introduce dangers as the player progresses through missions in that sometimes booby traps will be present, draining large portions of energy if triggered.
While missions can be repetitive, this issue takes a while to come up, as they cannot be done back to back. Once a mission is complete, the compowder will not go off again for some time, leaving the player to the other aspects of the game. Of course, if players still have energy and want to earn more coin and experience, they can visit the WOOHP headquarters for a little training.
This is sort of a hybrid of automated fighting games and the above mentioned treasure hunting elements. For the former, players can choose to train with weights, jump rope, punch bags, or combat train at the cost of energy. Unlike the fighting genre game, the reward isn’t stats, but varying amounts of coin and/or experience.
The next mode of Totally Spies is where the girls-only flavor starts to truly kick in. Since players are supposed to be high school students, they can visit the mall and shop to their heart’s content. While it serves no purpose other than aesthetic pleasure (on that note, players can take pictures of their avatar), players can peruse a rather sizable selection of clothing and are able to try all of it on, It Girl-style, before purchase.
In addition to wardrobe, players can also shop for items around their virtual house. Spies need a place to live, after all. Starting with a respectably sized place, players decorate it with a very large variety of indoor and eventually outdoor furniture – many of which are animated with “on” and “off” states – and any number of overly cute pets. Like most games hosting a virtual space, though, a good chunk of these items do cost virtual currency. In addition to this, the house will get dirty and unkempt in the player’s absence (sort of like the many Facebook restaurant games).
This is actually where yet another female-oriented mechanic comes into play. Other than clothing, what is one other very important aspect of high-school life for young women? Think about it for a second. Yes, boyfriends, and yes, this makes an appearance here as well. It’s actually an amusing use of monetization too, as they cost virtual currency.“Dating” one of these bought men will give a boost to the player’s maximum energy.
Socially, Totally Spies is still fairly basic, consisting of visiting friends’ virtual spaces and “helping” them on a daily basis for minor rewards. Beyond this, leaderboard systems and gifting are all in place. Nevertheless, not all mechanics are available for us yet. There is one that looks rather promising called “My Team.” In the television show, the spy team is of three girls, and such is the case here too. However, players must complete certain objectives to unlock the team.
If there were anything to complain about with Totally Spies, it’s that the game play is somewhat shallow and repetitive. But the game’s constant switching between the different game modes, the repetitive nature of the game’s core isn’t apparent right away. In fact, it’s actually a lot of fun, even with no over-arching rewards or objectives.
Overall, Totally Spies! Fashion Agents is certainly one of the better games we’ve seen on Facebook, and even though it’s tailored to girls, it is, for the most part, appealing to either gender. Of course, it’s unlikely that most guys will make use of the boyfriend feature, but if you’re a person that enjoys shopping, treasure hunting, or virtual space mechanics, then this fast-growing game is one you should certainly give a try.