Millions have downloaded the Design Home app, an interior design-centric game that has you competing in Daily Challenges and decorating different types of homes around the world. Graphics are sharp, the format is well-honed, but does this addictive game live up to expectations?
The aim of the game is to follow the whimsical design briefs and furnish an empty room, ticking off the requirements for each competition. Requirements might be as easy as ‘Style an eclectic living room’, while other goals might demand you use specific items from featured brands in the catalog.
Your game catalog is the toolbox that you use to style each room. The furniture on offer is actually a catalog of real life brands, shrunk into a 3D format. It means that the longer you play the game, the more familiar you become with their catalog. If you didn’t know who Kathy Kuo was before, just spending a day on the app will inform you that she certainly digs ottomans.
Once you’ve submitted your design, it goes up to public vote. Users vote on which designs are their favorites, and notifications encourage you to come back to claim daily rewards.
Pay to Play
You’re welcomed to the game with a wad of cash. The dollars and diamonds are the in-game currency that pave your way to winning. But watch out, the rewards for entering a game are low and the amount you spend to buy furniture from the catalog is high. You don’t even get to keep the furniture you buy, running out of the item after five uses. It’s easy to see how somebody addicted to winning the game could find themselves topping up their diamonds with an actual credit card. But what’s frustrating is that even after parting with real cash, you’re not really owning anything.
The app rarely freezes, loads well and has great game play. The rendered room images look great, although the game is frustratingly confining. Items can only be placed where they’re designated, and your furniture selection is limited. But it’s easy to see how the daily challenge format, with user voting and announcements of the new items added, gets you hooked. It’s like playing The Sims but faster; it’s just the right amount of time to design a room on your morning bus commute, or to have a cup of coffee and unwind.
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How much fun is this game? This is definitely the one for those armchair designers who want to flex their interior design skills and try out different color schemes. Say you’re usually a boho queen and fancy doing something in an industrial style, it’s the perfect place to test your ideas out. If you’re looking for a fun design-my-space type of game, Design Home has certainly got a strong platform for play. The graphics and gameplay are simple and straight forward, so much so that it’s easy to become hooked. So watch out for your new addiction!
For those who want to play home designer with their own home, check out our review of augmented reality design app Homestyler or find the perfect paint color with ColorSnap. Want to take interior design to the next level? We have a list of the top interior design schools, ready and waiting for your application.