Parents' Guide to

Gardens of Time

By Erin Bell, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 13+

Social game combines a building sim with hidden objects.

Game Facebook 2011
Gardens of Time Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this game.

Community Reviews

age 18+

Based on 1 parent review

age 18+

Keep Away, Keep Away!

Let's look at the facts: Playdom has a history of complaints from parents about violation of kids' privacy. Playdom has one of the worst customer service records in online history, if its own community forums can be believed. An international boycott of Gardens of Time has been organized by its own players. If Playdom had devoted as much commitment and energy to design and customer service as it has to promoting the game, this MIGHT be an acceptable and even moderately educational game to play with your kids. However, given that people are complaining in droves about the loss of money, bugs in the game which render them immobile and unable to play for days at a time, and a customer service division that is as callously indifferent to the people for whom the game was designed (we regular folk) as Caligula was to the common citizens of Rome, I think it's safe to recommend that someone put the game out of its own misery.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (1 ):
Kids say (1 ):

Garden of Time deftly combines two extremely popular casual game genres in an attempt to appeal fans of both CityVille-type social sims and seek-and-find games like Mystery Case Files. Fans of hidden object games will be in heaven, with more than 40 seek-and-find scenes that can be replayed an infinite number of times with randomized item lists. The building sim portion of the game is enjoyable too, with an elegant Victorian esthetic and the ability for friends to visit each other' gardens and play a special Blitz mode that involves finding as many hidden objects as possible in 60 seconds.

Gardens of Time weaves its gameplay elements together with a progressive storyline advanced through the completion of quests, so players have an impetus to keep playing that goes beyond amassing points and decorations. There's some of the usual pressure to invite friends, post game-related status updates, and spend real-world cash on exclusive items, but Gardens of Time isn't as aggressive in these areas as some other titles.

Online interaction: Players progress faster in the game by having friends who also play the game. They can exchange gifts with these people, visit each other's gardens, and help complete their buildings. The game does not prompt players to add strangers as friends. Players can compare high scores on a leaderboard and post game-related status updates to their Facebook walls.

Game Details

  • Platform: Facebook
  • Pricing structure: Free
  • Available online?: Available online
  • Release date: April 8, 2011
  • Genre: Simulation
  • ESRB rating: NR
  • Last updated: August 30, 2016

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