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Totem Tribe Gold (iOs) Review

Time management goes tribal.

Well, to be precise, Totem Tribe Gold isn’t really a time management game, although it feels like one most of the time. You don’t run on a timer, but you do have a whole lot of tasks to accomplish. You play as the chief of your tribe, trying to restore balance after ages of peace are destroyed. You must find the six totems, hidden on various islands in order to restore peace and harmony.

Basically, Totem Tribe Gold works like a time management game. You start with very basic skills and a small amount of tribesmen. By teaching your workers to build a hut, you can gain more workers. The more huts you have, the more workers can be trained. Of course, you are restricted by the amount of space on the small island, and the buildings can only be placed in completely open areas (no trees, etc.), so it isn’t as easy as just building wherever you want. As you advance in the game, you learn how to make more and more types of buildings, each of which produce things you need, like hunters, equipment, fighters, and so forth. You aren’t restricted in any way by lack of resources, but the amount of workers you have will dictate how long buildings take to be completed. There are certain types of buildings needed in every level, and often times your hardest task will be to try and find enough open ground for all the buildings you need.

Building villages is not your only task in Totem Tribe Gold. You’ll need to find those treasured totems, and to do that you need to explore each island. When you first start each island, most of the land mass is black. As your tribesmen move around, building and exploring, you will bring light to more of the environment. One of the buildings you’ll make creates scouts, and once you have those you can send them off into the darkness to uncover the treasures below. Of course, this often results in uncovering enemies as well as treasure, so you’ll want to make sure your defenses are ready before too much exploring happens.

Totem Tribe Gold is more than just building and exploring, and it adds a lot to variety of gameplay by adding an element of hidden object finding to the mix. As you uncover each of the islands, you’ll come in contact with native tribes, ancient medicine men, reclusive hermits, and more. Many times, finding these people will coincide with finding items to finish a task. For instance, when your people are poisoned, you will need to find herbs to give to the medicine man to create an antidote. You need to search around the island to find these hidden in plain sight items if you want to advance in the game.

The items you need to find fit in well with the story; for instance, find wood to start a fire, but the small size of the screen coupled with the business of the environment makes this a very challenging part of the game. I found this to be a great addition to the gameplay, as it adds a lot of variety to what might otherwise get to be monotonous. However, I do have one small complaint about the hidden object aspect of Totem Tribe Gold. You need to find every single item to advance in the game, and some of them are very difficult to find. There is not any hint feature that you can use if you get stuck on that last seashell or piece of firewood. In essence, if you can’t find an item, you are completely stuck in the game, which can be a bit frustrating. I was always able to eventually find everything and keep moving, but I think the addition of a hint feature would be helpful, particularly for younger players.

Final Thoughts:
Totem Tribe Gold is a fun game that mixes elements of time management with elements of hidden object adventures to make one really great game. The story line is interesting and keeps the game moving along at a steady pace. Giving players the option of continuing to explore an island or moving on to the next once they’ve completed their goals means that each player can have an experience that is right for them. The content in Totem Tribe Gold is completely safe for kids, and it’s always great to find a game the only family can enjoy – but the lack of hints for hidden object may lead to frustration for younger players.


About Amy

U.S. Senior Editor/Deputy EIC at BrutalGamer, mother of 5, gamer, reader, wife to @MacAnthony, and all-around bad-ass (no, not really)

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