In an effort to keep young female players coming back to its game, Fuel Entertainment has launched virtual boys (including boyfriends) in its online virtual world Spark City World. The free-to-play browser game allows girls to shop in virtual stores, customizing their avatars with new clothing and makeup, and decorating their apartment with new furniture, flooring or wallpaper.
The boys in Spark City World are all non-playable characters (NPCs), and are found at random throughout the world. Players can interact with them and form friendships via conversations, learning the boys’ likes and dislikes, birthdays and more. These girls can enter light relationships with the boys by developing crushes on them, going out on dates, giving them gifts and even breaking up with them when they’re ready to move on.
“Our Spark City World fan base has made it extremely clear over the past few years: they want boys in the world,” said Fuel Entertainment CEO Mike Burns, in a company statement. “After many months of hard work creating a safe and amazingly fun way to incorporate boyfriends, we’re thrilled to finally be able to offer this new package of content to our incredible community of users.”
At launch, boys appear in four personality types: jock, hipster, skater and pop star, but there’s always the possibility for more to be added as the feature grows.
“The users of Spark City World have consistently impressed us with the myriad [of] creative play patterns with the tools we provide them, from throwing real-time parties, to full-blown edited video stories set in our world and posted to YouTube,” added Gerhard Runken, VP of Development at Fuel. “We can’t wait to see all the fun and innovative ways our fans will have fun with our new boyfriend functionality.”
Spark City World will come to mobile in 2014, allowing players to take the game with them wherever they go. Spark City World is now available to play for free, but does allow players to purchase VIP Membership and currency packages starting at $5.95. These VIP Memberships unlock private / VIP areas, special events, and access to purchasing every item in the game’s stores.