Doodle Fit 2: Around the World

App review by
Leslie Crenna, Common Sense Media
Doodle Fit 2: Around the World App Poster Image
Souped-up spatial-reasoning puzzler sequel still challenges.

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A lot or a little?

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

Educational Value

Kids can learn about spatial reasoning by trying to fit geometric shapes into a geography-themed shape set on a grid. Doodle Fit 2: Around the World blocks mirror the classic four-unit Tetris shapes with a few extras thrown in: a single cube, two- and three-unit rods, and three-unit corners. Kids will study the shapes given and assess how blocks fit together through mental and virtual trial and error, learning along the way that some shapes are more flexible than others. The "Around the World" theme sets the game on a rotating globe, and kids may absorb some geography tidbits as they play. Timed mode forces kids to think about time management as they complete challenging puzzles against the clock, and sandbox mode lets them experiment and use their imaginations. Overall, Doodle Fit 2: Around the World does the original proud and boosts learning potential along the way.

Ease of Play

Super easy, just like the original Doodle Fit, but a tad busy and confusing in places.

Violence
Sex
Language
Consumerism

Free version has lots of for-pay in-app extensions and third-party app ads that interrupt play. At least they wait for transition times and can easily be dismissed.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Doodle Fit 2 is a souped-up version of the original Tetris-style puzzle game Doodle Fit, with each level taking you "around the world" with themed puzzle shapes such as "American football" and "Statue of Liberty." Although it keeps most of its original fantastic features plus a new create-your-own mode, there are quite a few opportunities for sharing information (Facebook, Game Center, multiplayer mode), so keep an eye on younger players. 

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What's it about?

As with the original, kids must place a collection of Tetris-like blocks over a larger shape without leaving any empty spaces or overlapping pieces. The inability to rotate shapes makes the game a bit easier than its predecessor, but, as the game ramps up in difficulty, the larger shapes can really challenge. Kids can choose to play alone, connect with friends or anonymous players, create and publish their own puzzles, or solve community-published puzzles.

Is it any good?

DOODLE FIT 2: AROUND THE WORLD is even better than its popular predecessor: Enhanced features include a serious graphics upgrade, a new sandbox mode, and community puzzles. The level creator is just flexible enough to allow kids to create anything that fits on the grid, then edit, publish, or delete with ease. Community puzzles are well-organized, and kids can now play with a countdown in time-attack mode and even learn a little geography, since levels are themed by countries displayed on a rotating globe. However, the addition of scoring and gaming networks really transform it into a product that's more suited for older kids and teens. 

At first, play might appear to be completely progressive, but savvy kids likely will discover they can tap on the dots on the routes or the white arrow buttons to select any of the puzzles in a level, so they can do the hardest one first if they like. Third-party ads and in-app purchase opportunities can be distracting, though at least the full-screen ads only interrupt at transition points and are easy to dismiss. The $0.99 no-ad version is totally worth it. Doodle Fit 2 may not be the best for the youngest puzzlers out there, but its appeal has skyrocketed for the older set.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about puzzles. How does it feel to finish one? How does it feel to be stuck? Discuss puzzling strategies, such as starting with the most limited pieces first.

  •  Challenge your kid to create a full set of themed puzzles, and hold a family tournament to see who can solve them the fastest.

App details

For kids who love puzzles

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