A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this game.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that this software requires the VSmile TV Learning System to play. Using the stylus can be difficult: Kids have to push down on the stylus to make the head retract, and then they must continue to hold it down while drawing. This can be very challenging for kids younger than 5, and difficult for those ages 5 to 8. It does teach kids a wide variety of skills, from tracing and color mixing to some animation basics.
Is It Any Good?
In addition to open-ended play, the software offers 11 interactive art lessons and activities. Kids practice fine-motor skills by tracing gray lines to create shapes, learn how to click and drag geometric shapes to create pictures, and play video games that require them to draw. Also good is a color-mixing activity that teaches kids how to make secondary colors by mixing the primary colors of red, blue, yellow, and white.
The stylus is sometimes unresponsive, requiring multiple attempts to make it react correctly, and testers were frustrated by the unit's inconsistent acceptance of their tracing. Because the stylus requires dexterity and patience, the VSmile Art Studio isn't a good fit for children younger than 5. If you don't already own the required system, this game doesn't make it worth investing in it. But if you do, this digital art desk will provide your kids with plenty of activities to explore.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.
Suggest an Update
Our Editors Recommend
Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.See how we rate