Long Live FlickaPancake, Virtual Lion

Part of the beauty of the internet is the capacity to interact with simulations. When presented with a lion sim a month ago, I decided it was time to learn about the majesty that is lion living. Enter FlickaPancake, a lion bred in my den who will maybe one day be king. (Maybe.)
Screen Shot 2014-08-11 at 4.27.20 PM

Virtual pet simulators are like, my thing. That being said, I’m admittedly pretty shallow. So Lioden, a lion pet sim, didn’t sway my fancy at first. My main game right now is Flight Rising, a beautiful, polished, cartoony dragon sim.

(To skip to the part specifically about FlickaPancake, scroll down to the subhead “FlickaPancake 4-ever”)

Pictured: Pretty level 1 thing that can be defeated by moths.

The thing about Flight Rising is that it encounters maintenance problems often (like, right now). When I can’t access one game, I’ll casually pick up another.

I set up a Lioden account during one of these down sessions. It only took two days for me to realize that Lioden is tops.

Joining the Pack

Pictured: Level 1 thing that can take down antelope.

Pictured: Realistic looking level 1 thing with good enough stats to theoretically take down an antelope.

I like games that covertly teach you something. Flight Rising has an active economy and some facets that teach management skills, but Lioden teaches about the actual world of lions.

For instance: the August site-wide event is the Sahel drought. The Sahel drought is a real annual thing that is changing with climate change. The fact that I casually learned about it is kind of rad.

All Trendy & Whatnot

But I’m gonna be honest, that alone wouldn’t make me a fan of Lioden. There are other awesome things going for it (an ace breeding sim, expiration management, and item acquisition minigames).

Let’s put it this way: If I were to design a virtual pet game, it would function far more like Lioden than Flight Rising. The explore feature is good, the energy paradigm is cool, the breeding portion is awesome.

On Flight Rising, there are seven parts of your dragon generated based on genetics. These are species, primary color, primary gene, secondary color, secondary gene, tertiary color and teritary gene. On Lioden, there are 19, including base color, eye color, mane color, mane type, their base stats and ten different genetic marking slots.

FlickaPancake 4-Ever

FlickaPancake the babby

FlickaPancake the babby

It didn’t take long for me to embark on using science to engineer the best lions possible. But I did have some cubs before I perfected my strategy.

One of these cubs was FlickaPancake.

Pause. Rewind. How was FlickaPancake named?

I have a habit of crowdsourcing the names of my virtual pets. On the night FlickaPancake was born, I was at work. I asked my coworkers for name suggestions. One said Flicka, one said Pancake. I said, let’s put them together. Thus, the best name for a virtual lion ever was crafted.

But here’s the dealio: FlickaPancake was quickly surpassed by new cubs in both genetic variety and base stat strength. He’s one of the weakest lions I have. When I told my coworkers this, they were like, “too bad. he’s not going anywhere.”

Whelp. Looks like I’m stuck with him.

FlickaPancake as an adolescent.

FlickaPancake as an adolescent.

Level Grinding

Since these lions live around 15 years (one day in real life is a month of game time), I decided to embrace my role as FlickaPancake’s guardian.

He’s now an adult and one of two male lions I can send on patrol, where they gain stats and can find items. The other male is way better statted than FlickaPancake, so I let him handle most of the patrols. Every third patrol, it’s FlickaPancake’s time to shine. He hasn’t done anything impressive yet, but I’ll make a post when and how he does.

Odds are that he’ll never be the alpha male of my lair. I mean, I have so many other male lions who are either better looking or stronger. But who knows, if I’m never getting rid of him, then I may change my mind. I mean, those amber eyes are pretty cool.

Screen Shot 2014-08-11 at 7.20.43 PM

And, I guess he’s good at like picking up bones and stuff.

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