Blox 3D City Creator
By Christy Matte,
Common Sense Media Reviewer
Common Sense Media Reviewers
Blocky builder is solid but has tricky controls.
A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this app.
Kids can work on spatial reasoning skills and use their creativity.
Ease of Play
Introductory tutorial is minimal. Some kids will get frustrated with mechanics before being drawn in.
Violence & Scariness
If you place a robber and a cop on the same piece of map, the cop will shoot the robber, causing him to explode in a puff of red.
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Products & Purchases
Large buttons promoting the publisher's other apps appear on the menu screen. These have a parent gate, which requires swiping with a certain number of fingers.
Parents Need to Know
Where to Download
Videos and Photos
Blox 3D City Creator
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What’s It About?
BLOX 3D CITY CREATOR is an open-ended block-based building program in the vein of using Lego bricks or designing in Minecraft. Kids start with a mostly empty land block, or they can build on a pre-existing cityscape. They have 50 specific items, such as a helipad with helicopter, a train, an ambulance, a number of buildings, roads, train tracks, etc. There are five people (man, woman, boy, cop, robber) and a bird. And then there are 20 building block items that can be placed in 12 colors. Kids can also control the environment with day, afternoon, night, rain, snow, or black and white settings. Each cityscape has an animation that shows how it was built. When kids save a creation, it automatically uploads it to the global library, which appears on their website.
Is It Any Good?
Though there are lots of features, finicky controls may make this experience too frustrating for some. Blox 3D City Creator does offer cool on-screen elements that you can't get with analog blocks, the best of which may be the animated replay of the building process. This allows kids to watch other people's builds and learn from them. Many of the objects also automatically animate when placed on-screen (the boy runs around, the helicopter lands and then takes off again), which adds to the fun. On the other end of the spectrum, the controls and perspective are frustrating. If you make a mistake, there's no "undo," requiring kids to double-tap an item to delete it. It's easy to double-tap in the wrong place, deleting the wrong item, or adding a new item entirely. As kids rotate the city, the objects in the menu don't move, but their alignment relative to the user does change. This leaves kids having to guess which of the four staircases or two roads will be facing in the correct direction when they are placed in the city. There's also a lack of basic blocks. Kids can add a flag or a windmill, but there's no flat plank piece or bridge (in-game people won't cross roads without a bridge). For kids who love building games and apps, this might be a nice addition, as long as they have the patience to get the hang of the interface and controls.
Talk to Your Kids About ...
Families can talk about building with blocks in real life and Blox 3D City Creator. How can you create the buildings you imagine with a standard set of blocks or bricks?
Families can talk about learning with apps. Do you think this is a good app for learning? Why, or why not? What can you learn?
- Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Android, Kindle Fire
- Subjects: Hobbies: building
- Skills: Thinking & Reasoning: spatial reasoning, Creativity: imagination, making new creations, Self-Direction: work to achieve goals, Tech Skills: digital creation
- Pricing structure: Paid
- Release date: July 18, 2018
- Category: Simulation Games
- Topics: Cars and Trucks, Trains
- Publisher: Arjun Gupte
- Version: 1.4
- Minimum software requirements: iOS 6.0 or later; Android. 2.3 and up
- Last updated: September 10, 2018
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