The Tribez is cute but is ultimate freemium greed

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New in the Store is a freemium game which you'll probably want to avoid. The Tribez comes at you cute and glossy, but the game's unashamedly pitched to try and get you to spend as much in-game currency as possible in building a virtual civilisation, with the catch (of course) being that you soon run out of in-game diamonds and end up topping them up with real world money, up to the tune of a whopping £90 maximum for a single purchase. That's right, I just said £90.... Just kill me now.

From the Store description:

Tribez is not just a game! Tribez is an adventure, where you travel to a distant past full of secrets, mysteries and many hours of addictive discovery of an unknown, but beautiful world!
You are invited to visit a primitive world inhabited by a peace-loving people, who have been hidden behind a miles-deep portal from time immemorial. Build your own stone-age village, explore territories hidden by mountains and seas, and lead your tribe, who considers you sent by the gods, to prosperity.
Tribez is a world in which you feel alive!

★ Simple, intuitive controls.
★ Cute and adorable characters you’ll love!
★ Beautiful vibrant world you'll get immersed into instantly.
★ Lively animations make the prehistoric world come to life.
★ Tons of objects, characters, buildings and decorations.
★ Truly inexhaustible possibilities to develop your own stone-age empire.
★ Hundreds of captivating quests: search for treasure and artifacts, discover distant islands, explore mysterious caves and much, much more!

The theory's good, with well animated virtual characters that do your bidding, challenges that pop-up to prompt you in the right direction, and a lengthy tutorial introduction that guides you carefully around the interface. The more you know what to do, the more you'll spend if presumably the idea. Every freemium trick is pulled out here, from buying bigger, better everything to paying to avoid real world waits while your characters work and crops grow.

Here's a brief set of screenshots to give you an idea:

Screenshot, The Tribez

From the Aztec music to the glossy artwork, there's been some effort put into The Tribez, however misplaced its monetising ambitions...

Screenshot, The Tribez

Your first ten minutes with the game are essentially on rails, while the buxom native shows you what to do....

Screenshot, The Tribez

Of course, as in the real world, everything takes time - and, in truth you can go away and come back in a minute. Or you can pay a diamond to speed up time and get the task done 'now'. It's tempting, and the developers know it.

Screenshot, The Tribez

Your in-game currencies do build naturally as the village expands and as challenges are met, but you'll need freemium currency top-ups if you're to get anywhere very fast...

Screenshot, The Tribez

Every minutae and resource in village life is encountered here, along with suitable purchases to top things up....

Screenshot, The Tribez

And yes, all too soon you'll be facing this freemium screen - and boggling at a maximum spend which must be well over $100 in the USA. I'd estimate that the £6 purchase should give you enough for ten hours of gameplay. I guess that's good enough value, but (to me) it all still feels like strong-arm money-making tactics from the developers....

You can download The Tribez here in the Store if you still think it's your kind of thing...

Source / Credit: Windows Phone Store