Virtual Villagers – The Secret City is a life simulation game developed by Last Day of Work and published by WildTangent, Inc. It is the third installation in the Virtual Villagers series and was first released on May 15, 2008. The storyline follows the journey of a group of villagers as they travel to the northern area of Isola where they will discover an abandoned city. The goal of the villagers is to restore the lost city and make it a suitable place to live. This is done by repairing ancient structures and huts, learning about the city’s history, discovering new artifacts, and building alchemy labs.
Like the previous installments, The Secret City is based on strategy and puzzles. The player controls all the people in a tribe. The tribe members must learn how to thrive and survive on the newly found abandoned city. The player can achieve this by interacting with the villagers. These interactions help the villagers learn the basics of surviving in their new home. The player can teach the villagers how to gather food, repair huts, research new technology, increase population, gather collectibles and heal sick villagers. Once the villagers learn about these skills, they will become more curious about their habitat and be able to explore the island. Also, as the player learn about the different survival skills, they will also be able to solve the 16 puzzles within the game. For instance, after teaching the villager how to calm bees, the Bee Hive puzzles will be unlocked.