Centipede: Origins

 
(i)

 

Learning(i)

New take on old classic includes aggressive purchase push.

What parents need to know

Ease of play

The touchpad is a good substitute for the arcade's trackball -- certainly better than the joystick ever was. Centipede was always a very difficult arcade game, and that remains true here, but it's still an easy game to pick up and learn. 

Violence & scariness

Players try to destroy attacking insects via a gun (which doesn't make traditional gun sounds) and bombs. No gore is shown, and it's all done in a less-than-cartoon-like fashion. 

Sexy stuff
Not applicable
Language
Not applicable
Consumerism

The game actively promotes in-app purchases, specifically encouraging players to purchase power-ups and additional levels. These tools aren't necessary, however. 

Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable
Privacy & safety

Some privacy concerns. Players can opt in to Apple's Game Center to track scores and achievements, and for some games, challenge friends. Players can send and receive friend requests using an email address or Game Center nickname, revealing the first and last name associated with each party's Apple ID and, in the case of email requests, the sender's email address. With iOS 5, players can opt to have a private or public profile, which can include a photo. With a public profile, your real name is visible to all other players, and Game Center will recommend you to other players using your real name. With a private profile, only your friends can see your real name, and Game Center will not recommend you to other players.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Centipede: Origins is a new look at the old arcade classic. The gameplay remains the same -- shoot the centipede and other insects before they hit the bottom of the screen -- but it now has a barely-there story on top of it. The app is low cost, but parents should know it aggressively pushes in-app purchases, which kids might not realize are unnecessary. Players can share high scores via the Game Center social network, but participation is optional.

What kids can learn

Skills

Thinking & Reasoning

  • problem solving

What Kids Can Learn

Centipede: Origins wasn't created with educational intent, and we don't recommend it for learning.

What kids can learn

Skills

Thinking & Reasoning

  • problem solving

Centipede: Origins wasn't created with educational intent, and we don't recommend it for learning.

This Learning Rating review was written by Chris Morris

User reviews

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What's it about?

Centipede: Origins players try to stop the descent of a centipede by shooting it, but every time they hit a segment, it turns into a mushroom, which blocks the remaining parts, letting the insect approach in a very zigzag fashion, making it hard to hit. While this goes on, other bugs, such as a beetle, march down the path, placing more mushrooms. Players can buy power-ups, such as bombs to clear mushrooms out of an area or a rapid-fire option for their gun.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

While the tacked-on story and polished graphics aren't a real draw, Centipede: Origins remains true to the original arcade game and should be a fun trip down memory lane for people who fondly remember the quarter gobbler. While the aggressive push of in-app currency is annoying (and unnecessary), nothing being sold is essential. And, in fact, it's more fun to play the game without power-ups and remain true to its heritage. 

Adding gnomes to create a bare-bones background story really does nothing for the game, though. And in the rush to make Centipede pretty, developers actually made it a bit harder. And given that the original was one of the hardest arcade games out there, that's saying something. 

App details

Devices:iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Android
Price:$.99
Release date:June 21, 2012
Category:Arcade Games
Size:113.00 MB
Publisher:Atari
Version:1.0
Minimum software requirements:iOS 4.0 or later; Android requirements vary with device

This review of Centipede: Origins was written by

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Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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