It’s A Dog’s World
Ever wonder what life is like for our furry friends? From the creators of Bitlife comes DogLife: Bitlife Dogs, a new simulation game in which players live out their days a pooch. This pet-centric role-playing title lets you experience the cushy life of a well-loved pet, the struggle of getting adopted from a pet store and the harsh realities of being a stray.
The game randomly generates your name, breed, and location unless you make an in-app purchase. If you cough up 4.99 for Top Dog, you’ll be able to choose your breed appearance and attributes. As a dog, you have four stats to watch—happiness, health, cuteness, and respect. The stats are straightforward—respect refers to how much other animals respect you, while cuteness refers to how dog-gone adorable you are. For the most part, the only stat that really matters is your health. After all, you ideally want your pup to live a long life.
As a newborn pup, your interactions are limited to sniff, lick and play. When you sniff another living creature, DogLife: Bitlife Dogs, adds their scent to your scent database. There doesn’t seem to be any point to this smelly database other than to remind you that Jellybean the Dachshund smells like dirty socks. Licking and playing are great ways to increase your pups’ relationships. However, some humans will be off put by your attempts at bonding.
As your pup grows, more interactions will unlock, including snarl, spray, mess, attack, love and mate. Most of these abilities are straightforward, and you’ll also unlock new activities which vary depending on whether you have a home, are a street dog, or are in a shelter or pet shop. Unfortunately, no matter your dog’s background, gameplay soon feels repetitive.
No matter what life their leading, all dogs can learn new tricks. To practice tricks such as fist-bumping, begging and playing dead, tap the trick you wish to master. If you are lucky, you’ll skill will automatically increase. However, sometimes you’re required to watch an ad which is rather annoying.
Whether living it up in the suburbs, vying for attention in a pet shop, or surviving on the street, there is always an alpha. You’ll need to get other animals to submit to you to rise in the ranks. One way to express dominance is to spray or urinate on other animals, which will usually get the more cowardly pets to submit. However, if you’re low on the totem pole and spray the alpha, prepare to be attacked.
A Dog-Eat-Dog Worl
Life as a four-legged friend isn’t always easy, especially when you’re born on the streets. However, being a street dog does have its perks, mainly in the form of mini games. Though you may be a mangy, battered furball on the verge of death, at least you can swim in the sewer and scavenge for food in two unengaging mini-games. In the swimming mini-game, you tap the screen to avoid obstacles. While the scavenge mini-game shows you three trashcans and you try to pick the one with food in it. Neither game is particularly engaging, and the frustrating controls of the swim mini-game make it easy to pass up.
If you want pups of your own, you can mate. Not all attempts at mating in DogLife: Bitlife Dogs will be successful. If you don’t have a good relationship with the pooch you want to mate with, it’s not going to happen. Typically, puppies are born in litters of three, and yes, you get to name them. Grotesquely enough, much like with any small animals you come across in the game, you can choose to eat them. We all know nature can be complicated but did the devs really need to include this feature?
Overall DogLife: Bitlife Dogs isn’t without its charms. However, it is not a game I would recommend sinking actual money into. While the premise is adorable, the game loses its novelty as time wears on. Don’t get me wrong; the game is fun for a bit. However, the repetitive gameplay and poorly executed mini-games keep this title from finding a forever home on my phone.
Is It Hardcore?
DogLife: Bitlife Dogs is an underwhelming simulation title. While it’s fun to try out life as a dog for a bit, the game is marred by repetitive gameplay and bland mini-games.