Picky Kid Rating: 3.1
Trucks and Things that Go might be best described as peg-puzzles on steroids. If your toddler can’t get enough of vehicles and puzzles, they’re sure to love this app. The illustrations are great, but read our review before buying — there are some issues to consider before you commit to it.
This app is super-simple, and generally well-executed. Upon starting, you’ll be presented with a home screen where you can select which puzzle to play. There are eight different puzzles to choose from. Each is essentially a digital peg puzzle — you’re presented with a object that must be dragged to the correct “hole”. In this game, all the objects are vehicles, locomotives or wheeled equipment of some sort, including everything from a surfboard to a rice harvester. The different puzzles represent different categories — like farm equipment or emergency vehicles.
When you “pick up” a puzzle piece to place it, a narrator tells you the name of the vehicle. This is a good thing for those of us who are not sure of the difference between a wheeled excavator and a truck excavator, which both look like backhoes to me. When you drop the puzzle piece in the correct hole, you’ll hear an appropriate sound effect for that particular vehicle. Completing a puzzle will provoke cheering and fireworks effects.
When you’ve completed a puzzle (or at any time, actually), you can return to the home screen by tapping an arrow in the lower left hand side of the screen. All in all, the interface is very intuitive, and the drag and drop actions seem just about right for the level of the puzzles. These puzzles are more difficult than the most basic peg puzzles because the object silhouettes generally fairly complex. I debated getting it for B at all since we already have peg puzzle type apps, but she saw it on our Apps-to-try Pinterest board and specifically requested it. Because of its relatively high level of difficulty (remember — we’re talking about peg puzzles here!), I’m not sorry we got it.
However, there are several issues to consider before you buy. The most serious, in my opinion, is the inclusion of several vehicles that I’m not ready to explain to my not-quite-three-year-old quite yet, including a fighter aircraft, a bomb-disposal robot and a missile. That’s right, a missile, complete with an explosion sound effect!
Other minor issues: There is no way to turn off the music, but keep the voiceovers. The music only plays on the home/puzzle selection screen, but it’s fairly annoying, so it would be nice if there were a way to turn it off. (The only option in the app is a language selector between (American) English and Hebrew.) Also, when a puzzle piece is correctly placed, the next piece isn’t presented until the sound effect is complete. For objects with long sound effects, I find this lag annoying, though it does not seem to bother B. We’ve also experienced a few crashes, some of them severe enough that we have to restart the app completely.
The graphics and motion effects are very nice in this game. The object illustrations are detailed and seem fairly accurate, and are friendly in appearance without looking like cartoons.
Bottom Line: Trucks and Things That Go is worth considering for an “advanced” peg-puzzle app, as long are you are OK with the military equipment shown in it. There is a free version, so you can check out the style before fully committing.
[The developer of this app requested a Picky Kid App Guide review.]Review: Trucks and Things That Go iPad App,
Truck and Things That Go
Played on: iPad 2, iOS4
- Gil Weiss