Thursday, July 30, 2009

A brief guide to the Enchanted Island game on Facebook

Enchanted Island is a brand new passive RPG game on Facebook, from the makers of the Growing Gifts application. If you like the cool flowers from Growing Gifts, you now have a chance to play a game where you get to be a wizard that grows magic flowers on the island where all the Growing Gifts flowers come from. At this time, the game is still in beta.

Enchanted Island game

Even if you are not into Growing Gifts, you may still like this game. It's one of those games that at first might seem kind of boring, but quickly becomes addicting. It is also one of the few games on Facebook that won't annoy all your friends with various postings to your news feed, nor will you need to recruit an army to help you advance in the game.

The main thing you will need to play this game is an abundance of patience.

When you click the "Save Growing Gifts" tab on the Growing Gifts application, you are taken away to the island and asked to choose a pot. It doesn't matter which you choose, so just pick the one you like better. Then you give yourself a name and title, like so: ____ the ____. This could be anything you want, but this becomes your user name throughout the game. (I am app the coder)

Save Growing Gifts

round seed In the first stage of the game you have to grow all of the plants from the Round seed. You can buy the seeds and the pots needed to do this from the Supply Shop. You can only cast 2 spells every fifteen minutes. Not all of the seeds will grow plants. There are many that are duds. Just keep casting and be patient, and soon enough you will graduate to the next stage of the game.

flower stand Once you reach the next stage, Kendral the Herbologist will give you a flower stand to sell your plants from. You can hold a maximum of 3 plants in your stand.

You get a bonus for selling the same kind of plant, multiple times in a row. A man will visit you and make you an offer if you have 3 plants of the same type in your stand. You have an opportunity to haggle for a better price, but there is a possibility he won't make a better offer. The odds of him making a better offer will appear on the popup along with the offer. Even if he doesn't make a better offer and goes away without buying, you can still sell all 3 plants and get the bonus for selling multiples of the same type in a row.

Quests

The game contains a number of quests. Each quest completed adds a badge to your game profile.

Drooble Fruit One of the first is when 3 shady looking men show up and ask you to help them catch a fairy. If you agree, you will become an enemy of the fairies and they will just make faces and not help you any more unless you complete their quest. They will ask you to help them make Sleeping Potion. To do this, you will have to grow a Drooble Fruit from the Berry seeds that the crow drops at random. Even if you have grown this plant before, you will need to grow it again to complete this quest. Once you have grown that, when the shady men return, you will have an opportunity to call the fairies, who will knock them out with the Sleeping Potion.

It may be possible to complete this quest without agreeing to help catch a fairy. If you don't help the men, you might still be asked by the fairies to help them make Sleeping Potion, that they will use on the men if they return.

Currency

Silver is the regular currency used for most things in the game. You earn silver by selling plants. You can spend your silver on supplies at the Supply Shop. Be sure to take a look in the back where they keep the extra varieties of pots. The more expensive pots increase the price of your plants and help you earn more silver.

kendral Each time you level up, Kendral will give you an allowance of gold.This gold can be used to buy items from the Potion Shop. Another way to get gold is to become a supporter of the game and donating to show your appreciation of the time and work the developers have put into this great game. The more generous you are, the more generous the developers will be with the amount of gold they reward you with. This gold can be used to buy special seeds and potions.

Personally, I wouldn't waste any of my gold on potions and would use all of it to buy special seeds, regardless of whether I was only using the gold earned within the game or if I acquired it by donating to support the game. Patience is a virtue, and the potions only serve to satisfy the whims of the impatient. (more about this later)

sand castle lemongrass in a tin can One of the special seeds you can buy with gold is the Shell seed. This seed is needed to unlock the quest of the Old Man. When you grow a Sand Castle from the Shell seed, keep it in your plant stand and do not sell it until you have completed the quest. For as long as you keep it, some children will offer to sell you tin cans. If you sell the Sand Castle, the children will stop coming by with cans. You need to grow Lemongrass from the Round seed, in a tin can, for the old man to come down and buy it from you. If you sell the Sand Castle too soon, you may run out of tin cans and will not be able to complete this quest until you grow another Sand Castle, which isn’t very easy and could be quite expensive.

shell seeds Additionally, it has been announced that the Shell seeds will soon be removed from the Potion Shop for awhile, to make room for a new seed type. So if you want to complete this quest and grow all of the varieties of plants from the Shell seed, I suggest you buy as many as you can with your gold, before they are all gone.

faceted seeds UPDATE 07-31-2009: The Shell seeds are now gone and have been replaced with the Faceted seeds. I have not tried these yet, as I am out of gold until I level up. I am not yet aware of any quests related to these seeds or anything else special about them. As soon as I learn more, I’ll provide another update.

UPDATE 09-19-2009: The Faceted seeds are now also retired and have been replaced with the Spectrals seeds.

fire seeds In order to grow plants from the Fire seeds, you will need to have a wand powerful enough and Kendral's blessing. Grow three Phoenix Flowers from the Fuzzy seed to get three Phoenix Feathers, and the wand you need will be unlocked. Then all you need is enough silver to buy it.

dragon hide gloves Once you can grow the Fire seeds, grow three Dragon Tears to get three dragon scales. Those initial three dragon scales are what you need to get the gloves to pick up the embers. Once you have the gloves, all the duds from the Fire seeds become free Ember seeds.

dragon glazed cistern After this you can trade any additional dragon scales and feathers for special pots when the trader guy comes around. Once you have the gloves and special wand, that's the only thing you can do with scales and feathers. These special pots add $5 to the price of every plant.

ember seeds Once you start growing the Ember seeds, the Black Boronus plant drops a petal, but I haven't quite figured out what that is for yet. I believe it is for making a potion in one of the quests. I have seen "chocolate curls" in some people's profiles, but I have no idea what plant they come from or what they are for, either. Of course I haven't done all the quests yet, and I am only on level 6. So I guess I'll learn what they are for when the time comes.

Potions for the Impatient

There are 3 different types of potions in the game.

green dragon potion Green Dragon potion will refill your energy and allow you to cast 2 more spells without having to wait the fifteen minutes.

chronos potion Chronos Potion will allow you to cast 2 more spells, but you have to make up the time later. I have found that the game will only allow you to use this potion three times in a row, and then you'll have to wait one hour before you can play the game again.

UPDATE 07-31-2009: While this potion is still part of the game, it is no longer for sale at the Potion Shop.

luck potion Luck Potion will increase your odds on growing a plant, and the effects last longer than two spells. It has been said by the developers that the effects are cumulative, but they won't specify if that means that drinking more than one will give you even better luck or if it gives you better luck for a longer time, or both. It won't eliminate duds, but it will increase the odds of growing a plant when you cast a spell.

Do not use the Luck Potion while growing the Fire seeds, once you have the gloves. Because once you do have those gloves, there is no such thing as bad luck with Fire seeds because even duds are a good thing, since they give you Ember seeds. Of course if you are especially patient, you won't have a need for the Luck Potion at all.

UPDATE 09-19-2009: There is now also a Bad Luck potion, since you don't always want to have good luck. (there are times you will wish for bad luck, trust me)

All of these potions (except the Chronos Potion) can be purchased with gold from the Potion Shop, or sometimes you will be offered them at a special price of silver, at various times within the game. If you are not supporting the game by buying gold, I suggest not buying the potions from the Potion Shop and just waiting till the guy comes around selling them and get them with your silver, if you really want them.

hops When you level up, in addition to getting gold, you also unlock 2 more activities. The first one is a story, given in chapters, when you visit Hop's Haven. You can only read up to the chapter that matches your level. The other is a chance to write your own wizard's story for the The Hall of Legends, one chapter at a time, one for each level. Reading the stories written by other players can be a bit of fun, as there are some that are quite creative and well written. Just like the story at Hop's Haven, you can only read the chapters up to the level that you are, so if you find a good one you will have to keep coming back to read more.

Since this game is still very new, it has not been recognized by Facebook and given a verified status. So if you play this game and enjoy it, become a fan, write a review, and rate it to help it gain verified status.

And if you really love it, consider becoming a supporter and making a donation by buying some gold. It's the only way the game developers (Keith and Eric) will earn anything for their work. The more people that show their appreciation, the more time they can devote to adding more levels, quests, features, and other improvements such as live chat where you can socialize with other players and the developers, too. I have talked to them both and they are really cool guys. Without your support they would be forced to do other things to earn a living and have less time to devote to working on this wonderful game.


UPDATE 09-19-2009: Since I don't really have the time to keep up with making updates about this rapidly ever changing game, if you need any more help than what I have written in this guide, I suggest you take a look at the new wiki or visit the forums, where you will find lots of wonderful friendly people willing to help and answer all of your questions. And if you would just like to socialize with other players, you can always stop by Hop's Haven for a little Island Gossip.