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Parents' Guide to


By Christy Matte, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 7+

Challenging magical adventure demands coding logic.

Codemancer Poster Image

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What you will—and won't—find in this app.

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An interesting magical twist to typical coding games for kids, but with many of the same pitfalls. Codemancer frames the coding tasks within a magical story that may help draw kids into the experience. The tale isn't particularly strong, but it does at least provide some structure to the puzzles that follow. Much like other coding games, Codemancer doesn't actually teach any code, and there's no space for kids to create something. It's more of a logic game than a true coding experience. This means that it holds onto some of the tedium these games often create. Moving a character through a predetermined set of obstacles using a small set of commands is often slow and cumbersome. Codemancer provides some unique challenges and interesting maps to navigate, but the code gets lengthy and complex. If kids make a mistake partway through, they need to try to isolate what went wrong and then replay the entire thing to test their theory. The editing capabilities for the code are also limited, which makes it easy to actually create additional bugs while trying to fix a simple mistake. This is unfortunate, because if testing and editing were easier to do, it would make the whole experience more fun. There are kids who enjoy this sort of puzzle game, and Codemancer will be an engaging choice for them. Those who are looking to really learn to code may want to start elsewhere.

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