Carnival Tycoon HD

App review by
Christopher Healy, Common Sense Media
Carnival Tycoon HD App Poster Image
Fun, simple sim with a fast pace and cute animations.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this app.

Ease of Play

Moving customers to the attractions they want to see requires only a simple point and drag. Tapping to buy new attractions or upgrade old ones is just as simple. The rules and controls all seem simplified to appeal to a younger audience.

Violence & Scariness
Sexy Stuff
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Carnival Tycoon for iPad is a fast-paced, but not overly complicated, business simulation. Each day, you'll have to meet certain goals, such as a certain number of customers, a certain daily profit, a certain number of rides or food stands built, etc. Once you bring your carnival to its full potential, you can move on to one of several other locations (including Beijing, New York, Greece, etc.) There are only a few factors to keep under control -- getting customers to the rides they want, spending your money wisely to build and upgrade attractions, and repairing any mechanical malfunctions -- so it's a simpler kind of sim game. A version of the game called Carnival Tycoon HD is available for iPhone and iPod touch.

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Is it any good?

Many business sims are incredibly detailed, making them too complicated for younger kids to handle, but CARNIVAL TYCOON FOR IPAD boils the concept down to its main objectives and is thereby a great intro to the genre for younger children. Not that older players couldn't enjoy the game as well. It's sort of a mash-up of standard "tycoon" games (in which you manage your money to buy and maintain buildings and lure customers), and time-management games (in which you speedily tend to the specific requests of customers who enter your establishment). The combination works well. You watch wandering visitors, looking for one who, say, wants to go on the water slide; then you drag him to the water slide; and watch him ride it. Cha-ching! You've just made some more cash to build more rides and hopefully meet your daily goals before closing time.

App details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love simulation games

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