Playing of the continuous splash of time management games for the iPhone comes Fruit Juice Tycoon. In this variation of the genre, you play as an ambitious girl who wants to own her own juice company. In order to do so you must prove to your brother that you are worthy by putting a “rival company” out of business as well as buying out local fruit juice stores. The story may be a bit silly, but the gameplay is quite fun!
Gameplay is simple, but deep. There are two simultaneous games at play: making the juice (match-3) and serving the juice (time management). The interface is well-designed and responsive allowing for fast play while making fewer mistakes. There is no walking around, just making and serving juice. To make things a bit more interesting there is an occasional mini-game between days. This involved packing a truck up with a certain type of juice and delivering it to a certain juice store. This is crucial when it comes to earning a bit of extra money for supplies and upgrades!
There is little sense of progression with upgrades, though. We were overwhelmed by the number upgrade options, but with no real direction or advice on what to buy. For those new to time management games, or in some cases even those who aren’t, this is menacing.
While the gameplay is great, there are occasional bugs concerning graphics and sound, most apparent in the cutscenes between days. There also is some lag between transitioning between screens. They’re minor, but definitely hurt the smoothness of the experience.
That said, Fruit Juice Tycoon is a fun and enjoyable game that successfully combines elements of time management and match-3 games. At $1.99 you can’t go wrong!