A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this app.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Angry Birds Transformers is an action/arcade game that combines the popular film and toy franchise with the well-known app games. Rather than flinging birds at structures, though, the birds here are characters with arms and legs that shoot the pigs with a variety of weapons as they cross a plain. That means none of the subtle physics lessons previous Birds titles contained. The game also pushes upgrades via in-app purchase and severely limits play time without them, forcing players to wait semi-lengthy periods or pay to reopen the game.
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What's it about?
Players attempt to cross a plain in their "human" Transformers state, using a firearm to blast pigs or the structures pigs are sitting on, which causes the pigs to die. Flying pigs also frequently appear and must be shot directly (and, inevitably, in the face, since they're bodiless). Aiming is as simple as touching the screen where you'd like the weapon to fire. Falling structures can squash the birds unless they transform into cars (done by touching a button at the bottom left corner of the screen).
Is it any good?
Forget slingshots: These birds are really, really angry. ANGRY BIRDS TRANSFORMERS takes the well-known app franchise in a radically different direction, transforming it into a run-and-gun shooter. You have to give credit to developer Rovio for shaking up the formula, but the move doesn't quite fit. The shooting action is fine, but it feels out of place in a game that defined the physics category. And the push to spend real-world money constantly distracts.
There's a cool-down period after each level, meaning you'll often find yourself out of areas to play until you wait or cough up some cash. There also are upgrades to each character that cost money, and if you've failed to collect enough coins as you play, you'll have to pay to open new stages of the game. The app gives you some in-game currency, but it's entirely out of proportion, and it's this blatant cash grab that ultimately makes this one easy to pass on.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the value of moderating the time they play games. How long is too long? Do games stop being fun after a while?
Families also can talk about how advertising works. How does it make you want things? Would you want them if they weren't heavily advertised?
Themes & Topics
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For kids who love physics puzzlers
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