Dragon City

App review by
Patricia Monticello Kievlan, Common Sense Media
Dragon City App Poster Image
Seemingly for kids; purchases, privacy issues age it up.

Parents say

age 13+
Based on 22 reviews

Kids say

age 8+
Based on 15 reviews

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this app.

Ease of Play

It takes some experimenting to figure out all the features of this game. An initial walk-through offers a good introduction, but it's not clear what you should focus on with your dragon from day to day.

Violence

Some very mild cartoon violence takes place in the dragon battles: Fire and beams of light shoot from one dragon to another, but there's nothing gory or gross.

Sex

You can breed your dragons, but they mostly just look excited and then a new dragon appears.

Language
Consumerism

In-app purchases abound: Though you can get daily in-app currency rewards by completing tasks or claiming them each day, there are tons of opportunities to pay money to level up your dragons and their accessories. Also, users are invited to get free gems by signing up for surveys and services and downloading apps; there's no parent gate on these areas.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Dragon City is a game where users raise dragons: You feed them, breed them, build them habitats, and fight them against other dragons. You can also connect through Game Center, Facebook, or Google Play to visit your friends' dragon cities to give or sell resources. Completing activities can earn you in-app currency to buy things, and there also are abundant in-app purchases that allow you to level up even faster. Users can also share personal information with a wide variety of companies to earn "free" gems by signing up for surveys or downloading apps. The developers state that the game is intended for users over the age of 14 and that users under 18 will need parental permission, so even though this looks like a game for younger kids, its access to social media and emphasis on consumerism (without parent gates) makes it for teens. Read the app's privacy policy to find out about the types of information collected and shared, though this policy doesn't cover anything you share with third parties via in-app links.

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User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byKW4 January 15, 2019

Deceptive; very pay-to-win; lots of problems; inappropriate for kids

(Apologies - for some reason spaces didn't come out in this review and it came out like a big block of text... hope it's not too painful to read).


A... Continue reading
Adult Written byMel A. August 28, 2016

Terrible Company

The game is fun but graphics okay but you don't get what you pay for the short you on tasks gems and coins the when you breed dragons you just keeep gettin... Continue reading
Teen, 17 years old Written byslayerdude June 28, 2016

my favorite game on android!

Dragon city is a fun game for teens kids and even adults (if they like games).
Its a game where you can become a dragon master and grow and feed your dragons in... Continue reading
Kid, 11 years old April 30, 2017

Dragonvale is more fun, and less costly.

My friend wanted me to play it, so I got the app, which is free, hoping for a fun game like my beloved game Dragonvale, and was slightly disappointed. It's... Continue reading

What's it about?

DRAGON CITY is a simulation game where you raise cartoon dragons. First, you pick a habitat, and then you hatch, feed, and raise a dragon to adulthood. Once it's an adult, your dragon can fight or breed with other adults to create new baby dragons for your city. Breeding happens with floating hearts, and battling involves tapping buttons to choose moves, but the dragons don't actually touch each other -- they just incur damage points until they disappear. As you complete tasks, you earn experience points and in-app currency, each of which unlocks abilities or enables you to buy things. In-app purchases abound: You can speed up your leveling-up by using real money, and you can spend on anything from cool accessories for your dragon to increased powers in battle. To avoid spending real money, you can "earn" free gems by signing up for special offers, surveys, or other apps. Also, you can choose to visit the dragon cities that your contacts have created, where you can tap their dragons and habitats to add experience points and in-app currency to their coffers.

Is it any good?

Like SimCity BuildIt meets Farmville with a little battle game baked in, this build-and-accumulate model will attract little kids but isn't meant for them. The dragons are cute, and it's rewarding to be able to earn experience points for so many things, from feeding your dragon for the first time to clearing brush. That being said, this screen is really busy: It seems like there are a lot of possibilities for what you can do with your dragons, but there's a reasonably steep learning curve involved to understand how it all works. Also, even though the dragons are cute and potentially appealing to younger kids, this is definitely a game meant for older users. There's no iffy content, exactly, but the social features let you automatically connect with other users in a way that might make some parents (and some kids) uncomfortable. Also, it's too easy to make purchases or share personal information with third parties, all in the name of getting more stuff in the game. Overall, the complex interface, sharing features, and consumerism might best fit teens with their own devices -- or their parents.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about keeping information private: Why does the game offer links to sign up for things? How do you think this free app makes money? What information should we avoid sharing online?

  • Discuss your rules for in-app purchases before downloading.

  • Talk about games that let you collect and build. Why is it fun to play these games? What makes them so appealing to play again and again?

App details

  • Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Android
  • Price: Free
  • Pricing structure: Free (many options for in-app purchases and upgrades)
  • Release date: December 23, 2015
  • Category: Simulation Games
  • Size: 66.70 MB
  • Publisher: Socialpoint
  • Version: 3.10.3
  • Minimum software requirements: iOS 6.0 or later; Android 4.0 and up
  • Last updated: February 13, 2020

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