Version Reviewed: 1.3
Device Reviewed On: iPhone 5/iPad Mini Retina
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First off, if you’ve only got an iPhone you should give CodeQuest a miss for a bit. While the app promises an enhanced version for the iPad, suggesting that there’s still a purpose behind the iPhone iteration, that’s not really the case. The iPhone version concludes all too quickly, giving you a heads-up that there’ll be more content at some point. It’s not a particularly nice way of doing things. The iPad version is pretty cool, though.
Primarily focused on teaching your kids the basics of HTML and CSS, it can be useful regardless of your age. It teaches the subject in a slightly roundabout way by demonstrating what different pieces of code can do. One stage involves picking a color before dragging the created code across, in order to add it to your webpage. Similarly, you can create lists of images and CodeQuest provides the relevant piece of code. By the end, you’ve created a webpage that can then be shared elsewhere. Privacy features mean you do this with your family but it’s all tightly secure for those worried about what their kids share online.
In many ways, you’re learning by accident and the code starts making more sense as you progress. More game-like experiences are in there though, such as when you have to use a slingshot to propel different pieces of codes into barrels, corresponding to whether they’re HTML or CSS.
It’d be nice if CodeQuest expanded on some concepts or had a freestyle mode, allowing kids to get to grips with things themselves, but as a good foundation for young children it’s got some potential. By normalizing such pieces of code, it should hopefully make a more hands-on experience logical for them, rather than seeming like an alien language. Although hopefully there will be future updates expanding on the idea as it is a little brief.