Version Reviewed: 1.0.1
App Reviewed on: iPad 3
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Storytelling / Gameplay Rating:
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Room on the Broom Games is a very nice companion app to the modern-day classic storybook, Room on the Broom (which is now also an animated video), about a witch who drops important possessions while flying on her broom, meeting different animal traveling companions along the way who help her collect what she has lost as well as protect her from danger. This title is written by Julia Donaldson and is wonderfully illustrated by Axel Scheffler, a favorite illustrator of mine. His illustrations - rich with colors, details, and stylized characters - look great on the backlit screen of the iPad and iPhone.
These games (eight in all) are based in part on the action found in this story, such as animal characters searching lush landscapes and looking for various things the witch has dropped, as well as other activities including a dot-to-dot exercise where one creates pictures by flying from star to star, then choosing that image which best matches the constellation created or by arranging stars freehand for the witch to connect. One can also collect flying leaves with a tap or build words while flying by, steering into letters while flying the broom in the night’s sky for a very nice effect.
I enjoy the sections based on this book as one helps the witch find her fallen objects such as her hat or bow, but I do find it awkward that one is awarded different levels of medals based how many taps it takes to uncover the object in this totally random mini-game. This is an odd choice as this section, based on the luck of choosing the correct hidden spot early, is not a skill one can improve upon.
Even having said this, there is a good amount of polish to the mini-games in Room on the Broom Games and to the look of the app in general. I also greatly appreciate the terrific music heard in the background, adding even more richness to this experience. It is worth noting that this app does not contain very much narrative of the story on which it is based - not a flaw as this is the app developers set out to create, but I do think that this is an app that would be enjoyed most by fans of the book - a nice choice for this Halloween season.