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Wasting away on Facebook: ‘Margaritaville’ game in the works

Bumper Jack

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Margaritaville - THQ

With his enduring anthems to margaritas, cheeseburgers and flip flops, you wouldn't peg Jimmy Buffet to be much of a gamer. But with popular -Ville games like FarmVille and FrontierVille dominating people's time online, it only makes sense that the man behind 'Margaritaville' would join the party at some point.

That point is now. Buffett and THQ are set to bring the tropically inspired Margaritaville Online to Facebook and Apple's iDevices, packed with a hefty dose of classic Buffett songs, characters and virtual cheeseburgers.

Due later this year, the free-to-play game is tailor made for Parrotheads, but will feature many of the same trappings as other social network games, including virtual currency that can be earned or purchased with real world doubloons. But in a clever twist, Buffett hopes to tie in-game purchases into real-world rewards as well.

"If you buy virtual cheeseburgers and margaritas to send to friends, that should earn you a real burger or beer at a restaurant," he tells USA Today.

In the game, Hawaiian shirt-clad players create their own version of an island paradise, which could be anything from building a bar and throwing parties to forming a beach band to undertaking tropical adventures in the form of minigames.

Buffett's songs are the main source of inspiration for the game, which will feature some familiar characters (such as Captain Tony, immortalized in the song "Last Mango in Paris"). Buffett's other creative outlets, such as his books, are also folded into the mythology.

And lest you worry that the head landshark is selling out to the video game industry, Buffett says he's very involved in the development of the game.

"They come up with storyboards and lines, and I see the process," he said. "Then, I do what I do: Buffettizing. When I got the first ones and saw the characters drawn, I got to go to Margaritaville."

Buffet isn't the only celeb hoping to cash-in on the social games craze. Earlier this month, media queen Lady Gaga announced 'GagaVille', a FarmVille spinoff featuring cuts from her record and other fan-related content.


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