The lights are on
For anyone who ever wanted to take a magical journey to Ponyville, your wish will soon be granted in Gameloft’s My Little Pony for the iOS, releasing on Novemer 8, 2012. Bronies and Pegasisters will be able to recreate Ponyville, play mini games, and unlock dozen of Ponies for hours of enjoyment. We reached out to producer Barnabé Anglade to get the inside story on My Little Pony.
Q: How many different mini games will there be in the game? Can you describe a few of them?
We’re introducing three mini games with the initial release. I don’t want to give too much away, but one involves intense apple-picking, where you have to collect as many apples as you can in a limited amount of time -- while avoiding the rotten ones. Another one has you flying ponies – and not just Rainbow Dash -- to clear the clouds in the sky with a simple one-touch control scheme.
Q: What is the total number of unlockable Ponies? What makes each distinct?
We’re starting with 46 ponies – along with some surprise fan-favorites. We’re also working on even more ponies as we speak. They’re obtainable in different ways, so it’s not just about having enough resources. Each pony has their own animations -- and many have voices -- that reflect their unique personalities you’ll recognize from the TV show. You can focus on your favorite ponies by playing the mini games with them and leveling them up as much as you want.
Q: Will you be able to play with your friends or trade items and décor?
Players will have the ability to add friends and check out their respective Ponyvilles. And if you’re feeling the Spirit of Generosity you can hide treasure chests in your friends’ towns for them to find.
Q: What can you tell us about the city-building mechanic of the game?
We really managed to balance the game for both casual and experienced players. It’s pretty simple for casual and young players to enjoy city-building without being overwhelmed by the complex parameters; they’ll really enjoy the placing, building, and collecting aspects. However, more experienced players will have a chance to get into the deeper mechanics we’ve also built in. For example, each pony can be leveled up by assigning them to specific shops to maximize its rewards. So you can simply enjoy recreating your own Ponyville, or you can take a more strategic approach if you’re more profit-oriented.
Q: Will My Little Pony be available on the Google Play market in the future?
Totally! And perhaps much sooner than you’d expect.
Q: How do you plan on monetizing My Little Pony? Do you intend on charging for in game items and Ponies?
We have two currencies you can earn in the game based on different drop rates. If you can’t wait for the timed rewards, you can access in-app purchases to acquire more. When you play the mini games, you can also choose several items with values that will impact the final XP gain of your pony to earn more currency.
Q: The game is primarily targeted at kids, but is there any fan service for Brony’s or Pegasisters?
Ha, they’ll have to play it to find out! Throughout the game you may randomly encounter some really popular ponies. To boot, we do have a few ponies that go way beyond the core cast. I can say that fans of “The Big Lebowski” will be pretty pleased.
Q: Are you currently working on any other My Little Pony titles?
At the moment, we’re focusing on finishing the game and planning the upcoming content. We have tons of ideas that will really add to the core release experience.
Q: Why do you think My Little Pony appeals to such a wide audience?
I guess some of it is partly due to the nostalgia for the original show and toys of the ‘80s, but no one can deny that the new cartoon, “Friendship is Magic,” is done incredibly well. It’s extremely well-written for what could initially be perceived as a TV show just for little girls. I think the strength of “Friendship is Magic” is that the creators didn’t forget that parents will watch it with their children; keeping that in mind has really made the show appeal to adults, whether they’re parents or not. We’ve really tried to capture that same vibe with our game, so I hope that fans and newcomers alike will appreciate it as well.
NO. JUST NO.
God help us.
It sounds awfully simplistic so far, but the city building aspect is... intriguing.