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Artist Colony Giveaway

Game Giveaway of the day — Artist Colony

Help the artists restore the colony and inspire them!
User rating: 25 (81%) 6 (19%) 19 comments

Artist Colony was available as a giveaway on September 30, 2018!

Today Giveaway of the Day
free today
THE NED BALLS - a Classic - physical timekiller.

Exclusive offer from Giveaway of the Day and MyPlayCity! No third-party advertising and browser add-ons!

Once home to the most pioneering creators of their time, it’s up to you to restore a thriving oasis of artists as you rebuild the community. Attract new talent by renovating the gorgeous surroundings and inspiring artists, dancers, musicians and more to become masters of their craft in this fun Sim game. Create, perform and sell brilliant works of art to revive this ultimate creative sanctuary in Artist Colony!

System Requirements:

Windows XP/ Vista/ 7/ 8; CPU: 1.4 GHz; RAM: 512 MB; DirectX: 7.1; Hard Drive: 115 MB





File Size:

100 MB



GIVEAWAY download basket

Developed by Electronic Arts
Developed by PopCap Games
Developed by Overwolf
Developed by BeamNG

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Artist Colony
In Brief
Artist Colony is a well-constructed ‘Sim’ like game viewed in an isometric viewpoint. I’ve scored it a 9 out of 10 for game play

Artist Colony downloads to a 100 MB zip file that unzips to three files, (a setup.gcd security wrapper, the set-up file and a read me). To install Artist Colony click on the orange key file labelled set up and not the setup.gcd file. Those with multiple hard drives can save games on any drive they wish, just change the default installation path. The newly installed game is 114 MB in size. The game installs to the following path by default, but can be changed by the user if you prefer:
C:\Program Files (x86)\MyPlayCity.com\Artist Colony
Four shortcuts are installed to the desktop, three of which can be safely deleted (Play Online Games, MyPlayCity Games and shortcuts to a free online game which vary each week). Also, if you don't like icons installed to the quick launch task bar, make sure you uncheck the box when the ''additional tasks'' window appears (after the Select Start Menu Folder window)
Once home to the most pioneering creators of their time, it’s up to you to restore a thriving oasis of artists as you rebuild the community. Attract new talent by renovating the gorgeous surroundings and inspiring artists, dancers, musicians and more to become masters of their craft in this fun Sim game. Create, perform and sell brilliant works of art to revive this ultimate creative sanctuary in Artist Colony!
Reference accessed HERE 30th Sept 2018

The Game:
As the name suggests, Artist Colony has you running an inherited refuge for aspiring artsy types, including painters, sculptors, musicians, dancers and photographers. Players will be first treated to the history behind these grounds, beginning with partners in the ’50s who experienced a falling out, and then fast-forwarding to today when you take over (and your "ne’er do well" step-brother soon follows). You’ll soon find your characters can develop feelings for one another, which may or may not be reciprocated, but hey, a broken heart can serve well as inspiration.
Tasks, in this top-down isometric game, range from the menial (clean away leaves or snow) to the important (restore and upgrade key structures) to the beneficial (sell pieces of art, or performances, to visitors for cash). And all three are interconnected. For example, you might not be able to enter the sculptor’s studio if it’s blocked by debris, and you won’t be able to upgrade the musician’s studio unless you have enough money to do so (earned by selling works or putting on performances). You get the idea.

You’ll train each artist in a primary and secondary craft and work your way to fill up all 10 slots, as they advance from novice to genius. When your characters get hungry you need to drag them to the kitchen to eat; when they’re tired you need to find a place for them to rest (residence building, park bench or grassy spot); and when they’re feeling down and unmotivated you need to drag and drop them onto inspirational objects (such as pretty floral plants) to help them create (and thus, sell) masterpieces.
Over time you’ll soak up the evolving story (including love triangles, betrayal and hardships), and really feel like you’re part of this haven for creative types. You’ll also collect pieces of photographs to unlock new areas of the colony (and reveal more info tied to the original owners) and view your masterpieces via in-game albums. In total, the game features more than 500 masterpieces spread between the three-dozen characters who will arrive and leave the compound throughout the tale.
Unlike some other simulation games, Artists Colony does not keep playing even after you’ve turned the game off. (So you won’t find any nasty surprises waiting for you – like deceased characters – if you don’t boot up the game for a couple of days.) The game’s pace is adjustable, and you can pause the action at any time by hitting the Escape key.
As much fun as we had playing Artists Colony, it’s not a perfect masterpiece in itself. For one, while the interface works for the most part – allowing you to quickly see the needs and whereabouts of each character – I had trouble finding the inspirational items (e.g. flower bunches) on the map, so you might find yourself dragging a character around for a while before finding it. A hot button to show you where these always-moving items are would have been a good idea. Secondly, the game only has one mode and doesn’t let more than one person play at the same time (that is, only one save spot).

Overall, however, this surprisingly deep and enjoyable game is well worth your time, especially if you’re a fan of people simulations. The unique concept is well-designed and successfully executed, and should provide many engaging hours of fun.
For similar games, try Virtual Villagers, Virtual Families, Escape from Paradise, Sprouts Adventure, and Totem Tribe.
Reference accessed HERE original review by
Marc Saltzman on Jul 9, 2009; Edited and reposted by Whiterabbit-uk 30th Sept 2018.
Other Reviews and Videos of Artist Colony:
You can see community reviews of Artist Colony HERE, plus forum comment, suggestions and help HERE. You can also see game play videos of Artist Colony HERE, HERE, HERE, HERE, HERE & HERE.
If you like sim games for example virtual villages you’ll love this. I only played the game for just over an hour, but will definitely be returning to it soon. I highly recommend this game for its intriguing game concept, gorgeous graphics, and well balanced. It’s almost a decade old, but well worth 9 out of 10 from me.
If you miss today's game giveaway you can always get the game via MyPlayCity 24/7 HERE; or If you prefer to purchase the game you can get it directly from Big Fish Games HERE

I'd like to take this opportunity to thank MyPlayCity for giving away Artist Colony with the toolbars etc. removed and to the game giveaway team, as always, for securing other ways to get free games.
After you've had an opportunity to play Artist Colony please take a few moments to give some positive or negative feedback about the game; for example, what you liked or disliked, or how improvements could be made to make it more enjoyable and perhaps change your mind about this game? If you don't like Hidden Object games at all, please explain why? If you don't have time to post a comment today, please do so at your convenience. These comments will always be accessible for as long as this site is open and provide a valuable resource for game developers, thank you. To access the comments once the giveaway is over, open the game giveaway to its homepage then scroll to the bottom of the page where it says Archives and select the date the giveaway was live (giveaway days are in bold type). This will open up the appropriate page for you to post your comment or review.
Useful Information not related to today's game giveaway:
I've updated the games section that used to be posted with the review. The thread is now called 'Weekly roundup of game deals', formerly the games section of the weekly reviews. You can find the new thread (which I've posted in the sticky section of the game discussion forums to make it easier to find if you are perusing the game discussion forums) HERE.
The rest of the information that used to be posted here can be found in the forums HERE. Also, check out Delenn's thread over in the game discussion forums for details of other free games and offers HERE.
If you like the third/first-person RPG's with massive open world environments, The Elder Scrolls Online is on sale for 50% off at the moment (It's only £7.49 or approx $9.73). Until the 2nd or 3rd of October. Also, the Summerset expansion is 33% off. If you complete a really easy achievement before the 7th of October, you will be rewarded with a pet, mount and fabulous house worth a couple of million in-game gold called the Grand Psijic Villa. I highly recommend this game. I've been playing it since it was in beta back in 2013 and now have three separate accounts. One with well over 5000 hours of gameplay and I've barely touched the surface of the game. It has something for everyone, you can generally play as a lone wolf for a lot of quests and join groups via an easy to use the menu system to complete the harder quests and dungeons. You can find the deals HERE and the information about the three gifts that you get on completion of a particular achievement HERE; (to get the achievement you just have to visit 12 different locations on the Summerset Isle map). One location on a small island called Artaeum that is located off Summerset Isle requires you to complete a further quest. If you have a friend who has already completed the achievement, you can ask them to go to Artaeum and then you can travel to the Wayshrine in Artaeum using the travel to friend button via your friend's list, without having to complete the additional quest. This is one of the best rewards the ESO team have ever given away. Some think ESO is a pay to win game, but that is total rubbish. No one has an advantage whatever they have purchased via the Crown store. The in-game purchases made via the Crown store are purely decorative. Many of the Crown store items such as Armor and clothing and weapon motifs can be purchased using in-game gold via the guild stores. you earn gold by completing quests, finding treasure chests etc. I earned over 2 million gold over the last two weeks and was able to complete my sets of motifs of which there are nearly 50 sets divided into 14 pages for each motif. You can pay anything from a few hundred gold pieces to over 250 000 gold pieces for a motif page depending on which set it is You can also buy pages and full motif sets by completing master writs, but do complete those you have to have completed various skills in the seven different crafting professions (Metalworking, Clothier, Jeweller, Enchanter, Alchemist, and Provisioner) I've been completing these for over two years but only slowly and have almost competed for every crafting profession to their max and was recently awarded the title of Grand Master Crafter. Master Crafters can create specific sets of armor and weapons, provisions glyphs and potions for all levels of player and sell their services to earn a lot of gold. The rarer the set, the costlier they are. You can also earn most motif sets by completing dungeon quests on Veteran difficulty or completing various daily quests. What I've described is just one small area of gameplay. There are so many to choose from as well as fantastic add-ons to help your gameplay and loads of sites that give you information on how to create specific types of characters and how to get the best out of the game. There are also different modes of play such as 'Battlegrounds', the 'Alliance War', loads of different dungeons and a massive world to explore.

Having problems installing today's game?
If you have a problem installing or activating or getting Artist Colony to work please visit the problems section, which you can find in the FAQ's thread HERE. Also read through the community’s comments because sometimes fixes have already been posted. The main issue we have is with the giveaway wrapper, which uses a Themida based code to protect the games executable. Unfortunately, Themida is also used to hide malware; so, as a precaution, some security software may block the installation and sometimes even delete the executable file. Blocking or deletion is usually determined partly by the way your computer is set up. Usually you'll get a message saying ''the file is corrupted'', but, the files are okay. There are a couple of things you can do to overcome this issue. The first is to reboot in safe mode with networking, install the game then reboot, or secondly you can (at your own risk) temporarily turn off your security, install the game, then turn your security back on. A note of reassurance to those that choose the latter and quicker method. The game giveaway team have been giving away games for over a decade (Dec 2006 & prior to that, via the main site 2 or 3 times weekly from Oct 2006 to Dec 2006) and have 'NEVER' given away a game infected with malware; they always test every giveaway with several of the top anti-malware suites to ensure all games are free from malware.
If for any reason you want to contact the giveaway team, for example, if you have a problem getting the latest game or other issues that the FAQ's thread or these comments don't cover or solve or if you have a game to offer the community you can do so HERE






Reply   |   Comment by Whiterabbit-uk  –  Last year  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+11)

installed on win 10 pro / sophos a-v with no problems. runs fine, no cursor issue. installed for my wife to try. thanks for the giveaway.

Reply   |   Comment by Ed  –  Last year  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+1)

PUA/InstallCore.Gen7, this is what my virus program detected. just a heads up for those that may have encountered it. this is what this is : This class of detection flags, Potentially Unwanted Applications (PUA), may compromise the user's privacy and the security of the local system. These are legitimate applications that often try to use social engineering to make the user install additional offers during the installation of the software the user originally wanted. A PUA application classification is the result of software, an advert, or a website exhibiting one or more offending behaviors and/or properties. A full PUA list is available at http://www.avira.com/en/potentially-unwanted-applications. This detection doesn't mean that the file is malicious. However, if the file was installed on the system without the user's knowledge, the user's privacy or system security might be compromised. Disabling this detection is only recommended for advanced users who understand the risks and how to use these applications.

A generic detection routine designed to detect common family characteristics shared in several variants. This special detection routine was developed in order to detect unknown variants and will be enhanced continuously."

this is just a head up if there is concern if you also got this. your virus program should just quarantine and not let you install and if you want to go ahead to install you just can take one of the suggestions above. I have rarely encountered this one with the games I have installed from this site and have installed them before when I have with no problems but some may see it as a malware.

..................................Moderator comment.....................................

Thank you for your explanation Really, thankfully those that are getting positive hits from their anti-malware software are picking up a false positive' probably due to the Themida code that's used in the giveaway wrapper.

The Themida wrapper has sometimes been used by hackers and other unsavory people to hide malware, so some antivirus programs will automatically delete or isolate anything that is wrapped in it. The game giveaway team had to use this to protect the executable due to hackers ripping the unprotected and registered games they were giving away some years ago. Because the unprotected executables where then uploaded to peer to peer sites for anyone to download at any time instead of the 24 hour period. This was impacting on sales and the giveaway team was warned that if they did not protect the game files adequately we would lose their generosity. That was about four-five years ago when we were still getting games from sites like Alawar. As mentioned plenty of times, the game giveaway team have been giving games away for almost 12 years and have 'never' given away a game infected with malware. They use several of the top AV software packages to test the files before they can be downloaded, to ensure the files are free from malware..

Reply   |   Comment by Really  –  Last year  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)

Sorry on this one. Blinking cursor too much to handle when in Full Screen mode of Windows 10 x64 Pro. The quarter frame reduced size is working cursor but then who needs that. Plus sort of done with this genre of drag guy here, do that chore.
Decent graphics for the day, turned off music. Given there's more interesting playable current games why bother. Used all the compat settings but it's clearly a graphics issue with the new Nvidia drivers unwilling to downgrade to this game's level. Thanks GOTD.

Reply   |   Comment by beergas  –  Last year  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+1)

There is something wrong with this game - I have downloaded a lot of games from this site but this game keeps popping up what looks like a command prompt that keeps flashing no matter what mode I try or what settings. Very strange. It's not a setting or firewall issue or anything - it's a programming issue in my opinion and it made the game unplayable.

Reply   |   Comment by frances2004  –  Last year  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+5)

Can't install because antivirus put it in quarantine... bummer!

..................................Moderator comment.....................................

The game is protected by a wrapper that contains Themida code. This can also hide malware, so some antivirus programs will automatically delete or isolate anything that is wrapped in it. The game giveaway team had to use this to protect the executable due to hackers ripping the unprotected and registered game, putting them on peer to peer sites which impacted on sales. That was about four years ago. To install the game you can either reboot in safe mode with networking. Install the game, then reboot as normal. Or whitelist the giveaway files or alternatively (the quickest method) temporarily turn off your anti-malware software until the game has been installed. The game giveaway team have been giving games away for almost 12 years and have never given away a game infected with malware. They use several of the top AV software packages to test the files before they can be downloaded, so turning off your AV software temporarily is safe. If you read the readme it does mention this issue.

Reply   |   Comment by Deeg  –  Last year  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+1)

I love people-sim games, and I actually paid for this one, because it's an excellent addition to the genre. The game is good at easing you into the game gradually, but it gets more complex as you go along. So don't judge it by the first ten minutes -- more will be happening in the future!

Reply   |   Comment by Corylea  –  Last year  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+4)

I am a bit lost - I never played a game of this genre - so what do I do while the artist are doing chores? Just wait it out? Read something and go back when I remember I am gaming and make them do the next thing?

I like the storyline and graphics - installation on Win10 without a problem.

Reply   |   Comment by Anu  –  Last year  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+3)

I am enjoying the game but my cursor keeps blinking (like it's in a box?) and it's distracting. I'm sure I'm missing out on a few hints due to this. I've tried going out and back in again but it doesn't solve the problem. I'll give it a rest and see if I can find a solution - I'd like to keep playing!
Thanks for the games. :)

..................................Moderator comment.....................................

Hi Anne, Try going into compatibility mode and changing the graphic options. That may cure the mouse blinking. :) Just right click on the games shortcut and select properties; then select compatibility mode from the tabs. Make sure the admin box is checked and try the others. The game is 10 years old, so also try changing the Windows version via the compatibility checkbox that says Run this program in compatibility mode for....... Check the box, which then enables you to choose from win 95 onwards. Change it to either Win 7 or XP.

Reply   |   Comment by Anne  –  Last year  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)

Anne, I found that going into options and unchecking 'full screen' fixed this problem.

Reply   |   Comment by J Bon  –  Last year  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+1)

I can't get it to run on Windows7. It starts, does a thermometer while 'unpacking data' then the screen goes black and you get the windows popup about "engine.exe" having crashed and Windows will look for a solution. (Ha! Like that has EVER led to a solution.) I tried with a couple different compatibility settings, but same black screen crash each time.

..................................Moderator comment.....................................

Hi Susan, the game is almost a decade old, so try running it in compatibility mode for either XP or Win 7. Also, try some of the graphics options that you'll find in the compatibility window. To get into the compatibility window right click on the games shortcut and select properties; then select compatibility mode from the tabs. Make sure the admin box is checked and try the others. To change the window version check the checkbox that says 'Run this program in compatibility mode for checking the box enables you to choose from Win 95 onwards. Change it to either Win 7 or XP. Hopefully, those changes should fix the issue. If not go to the FAQ's thread over in the Game discussion sticky section. I've linked to it in my review above.

Reply   |   Comment by Susan Canera  –  Last year  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)

Addition: I uninstalled, reloaded the program from MPC, and got exactly the same result.

Reply   |   Comment by Susan Canera  –  Last year  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+2)

Susan Canera, Have you tried setting a DEP rule? This is one thing a lot of people miss or are not familiar with. Here's a fix for Windows 7:

Here is the fix for Windows 7:

Goto "Control Panel" --> System --> Advanced system settings --> under the "Advanced" tab, under "Performance" section, click on "Settings" ---> click on "Data Execution Prevention" tab ---> click "Add..." ---> browse the shortcut on your desktop by right clicking the shortcut the install created. You want to highlight and copy the "target" and paste that into your DEP new rule. It's the actual executable file you're setting up a DEP inclusion rule for. That may just get your game or other programs running fine. If you still don't get this? Just browser search Data Execution Prevention on your internet search engine.

Reply   |   Comment by Jim  –  Last year  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+2)

I ve played but not finished this one.... For me it's a very good game and happy to play it for free so thank you

Reply   |   Comment by Gil  –  Last year  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+1)

horrible game it has a pop up box constantly popping up that you have to close i uninstalled it ASAP dont even install it as you will hate it the regular sims game is alot better

..................................Moderator comment.....................................
The game is free whereas the regular sims game is not plus it's very expensive, especially if you want all the addons. Each to their own.

Reply   |   Comment by gamer  –  Last year  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+2)

gamer, I found that going into the options and unchecking 'full screen' stopped the popup flashing.

Reply   |   Comment by J Bon  –  Last year  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (0)

I already own this game, and it is a great one. I recommend it.

Reply   |   Comment by Medb  –  Last year  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+1)

Are the games fun? Yes... but the problem is that they keep opening the MPC website each time you end a game. I wish they would stop doing that.

..................................Moderator comment.....................................
Hi Dan, The reason for the browser opening is so that the developer allows the game to be given away for free. Everytime your browser is opened when you close the game down, it earns money, part of which goes to the developer. All the games you get from these free sites such as MyPlayCity, Toomkygames, FreeGamePick, and Gametop all earn cash through this method and all pay developers for the games. Developers can earn a lot more money from their older games via this method. Basically, everyone wins with this business model, though I agree the browser opening is a little annoying, it's a small price to pay for getting the game free.

Reply   |   Comment by Dan  –  Last year  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+12)

Dan, Why don't you consider changing your outbound rules in your firewall for this or any other Windows program? Or you can just disable your internet connection before starting the game. Pretty simple fix.

Reply   |   Comment by Jim  –  Last year  –  Did you find this comment useful? yes | no (+3)
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