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The Cat in the Hat - Read & Learn Review

+ Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad
By Jennifer Allen on July 22nd, 2015
Our rating: starstarstarstarblankstar :: CHARMING
The Cat in the Hat - Read & Learn is a truly delightful way to enjoy the classic children's story.
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My Little Pony - Cutie Mark Chronicles Review

+ Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad
By Jennifer Allen on April 30th, 2015
Our rating: starstarstarstarblankstar :: CUTE STORIES
A fun series of stories bundled alongside design your own Pony tools.
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The Bedsby Tales Review

iPad App - Designed for iPad
By Jennifer Allen on March 22nd, 2015
Our rating: starstarstarstarblankstar :: SPOOKY GOINGS ON
A spooky tale for youngsters that should intrigue adults, too.
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Mister Mushy Review

+ Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad
By Jennifer Allen on December 11th, 2014
Our rating: starstarstarhalfstarblankstar :: ATTRACTIVE STORYTELLING
Mister Mushy is a fairly charming storybook app for young children.
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Celebrate Summer With a Cat in the Hat Learning Library Sale

Posted by Ellis Spice on July 22nd, 2014

It is now Summer, what a wonderful time, so I bring you news, that will mostly rhyme.

Oceanhouse Media want kids to read, whilst home this season, so thus there's a sale, if you needed a reason. Over twenty apps, now cheaper to get, most down a dollar, others further yet. They're about science concepts, aimed at ages five to eight, featuring the Cat in the Hat, which is pretty great. They'll teach your kids, whilst they rhyme, which is pretty impressive, doing both at the same time.

The list of apps can be found below, just in case you wanted to know:

Books


Collections

Netwars - The Butterfly Attack Review

+ Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad
By Jennifer Allen on May 30th, 2014
Our rating: starstarstarstarblankstar :: INTERESTING STORYTELLING
Incorporating interactive elements and promising new forms of media to explore, Netwars - The Butterfly Attack is an interesting take on the interactive graphic novel.
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bookkeep Review

iPhone App - Designed for iPhone, compatible with iPad
By Jennifer Allen on March 11th, 2014
Our rating: starstarstarhalfstarblankstar :: STRAIGHT TO THE POINT
Its simplicity is both its strength and its weakness, but Bookkeep will be a handy companion for avid readers not fussed about wanting to share what they're reading with others.
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SHERLOCK: Interactive Adventure Review

+ Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad
By Jennifer Allen on March 7th, 2014
Our rating: starstarstarstarblankstar :: FRESH TAKE
A classic murder mystery with plenty of interactive content; what more could one want from a story?
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The Great Photo App Review

iPad App - Designed for iPad
By Jennifer Allen on January 7th, 2014
Our rating: starstarstarhalfstarblankstar :: CLEARLY LAID OUT BASICS
Teaching the fundamental basics to photography and busting some tricky jargon, The Great Photo App is a useful starting point for the most inexperienced of photographers.
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Robotslayer - Volume 1 Review

iPad App - Designed for iPad
By Jennifer Allen on December 11th, 2013
Our rating: starstarstarhalfstarblankstar :: INTRIGUING STORYLINE
Some text issues aside, Robotslayer - Volume 1 tells an entertaining story of when good robots go very bad.
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Blinkist Review

+ Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad
By Mike Deneen on December 6th, 2013
Our rating: starstarstarstarblankstar :: CHEAT SHEETS FOR THE MODERN AGE
Blinkist will be right up the alley of anyone who has ever enjoyed SparkNotes as a kid.
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A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving Review

+ Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad
By Jennifer Allen on November 19th, 2013
Our rating: starstarstarstarblankstar :: DELIGHTFUL STORYTELLING
The classic TV special comes to the iPad in storybook form, and it's lovely.
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Niko and the Sword of Light Review

iPad App - Designed for iPad
By Jennifer Allen on September 20th, 2013
Our rating: starstarstarstarblankstar :: GLORIOUS STORYTELLING
Combining various forms of media, Niko and the Sword of Light is a comic book like no other.
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Marvin Review

+ Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad
By Jennifer Allen on September 16th, 2013
Our rating: starstarstarstarhalfstar :: DELIGHTFUL READING
Marvin offers a fantastic reading experience for those who regularly view DRM-free eBooks.
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Will Luton's Free-To-Play Book Is Chock Full Of Good Info For Developers

Posted by Rob LeFebvre on July 17th, 2013

Book: Free-to-Play: Making Money From Games You Give Away
Author: Will Luton
Price: $12.99


I just finished reading Will Luton's new book, Free-to-Play: Making Money From Games You Give Away. It's a $12.99 purchase in the iBooks store, making it a better deal than, say, the current paperback version, at $21.38 over on Amazon.

The book is a healthy roundup of what makes free-to-play (F2P) games tick, with sections on the economics, gameplay, monetization, marketing, and analytics--the underpinnings of any successful free-to-play game on any app store.

The examples he uses within the book are Farmville, naturally, Dungeons and Dragons Online, and Bejeweled Blitz. In this way, Luton is able to illustrate his points with concrete examples from real world games that use the principles within.

The author believes that free-to-play games are a win/win proposition, letting developers quickly and inexpensively release games that have a chance of making some money, and letting players who wouldn't typically touch a $60 console "gamers' game" experience fun for no money down. It's a delightful ideal, and I hope most, if not all, developers take it to heart: free-to-play games should be good games first, and monetization engines second. Luton continues to make this point throughout the book, though the message tends to get lost in the discussion of variable reward schedules (the same type of reinforcement schedule slot-machines are built on) and how to analyze key performance indicators.

As a non-developer, I did get lost within the many industry acronyms and other such jargon, but Luton does a good job of helping the novice reader get through it all. The title is clear: this is a book on making games that make money, and the information between the front cover and end flap is focused on that part of game making.

The level of depth and detail that Luton brings to the explanation of how free-to-play games work is astonishing. While the gameplay section, for example, tends to focus on player retention, play sessions, and triggers to keep your players coming back rather than actual game mechanics, it's an interesting read nonetheless. I've definitely increased my understanding of what a complex achievement successful free-to-play games have attained.

I'd highly recommend this book to anyone who develops games for iOS or other mobile platforms, as well as readers and writers who want to get a better grasp on the breakout phenomenon of the free-to-play genre. Luton has created a fantastic resource, here.

The book Free-toPlay: Making Money From Games You Give Away, by Will Luton, can currently be found on the iBooks store for $12.99.