Doodle Hangman Free

App review by
Jonathan H. Liu, Common Sense Media
Doodle Hangman Free App Poster Image
Animated character nervously awaits his fate.

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A lot or a little?

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

Educational Value

Although Doodle Hangman Free was created with some educational intent, we don't recommend it for learning. The vocabulary varies greatly in difficulty, and there are no settings options nor hints to adapt the learning experience. Though the dictionary links in single-player mode are a nice feature, the two-player mode allows players to submit any word, including misspelled, made-up, and inappropriate words.

Ease of Play

Doodle Hangman Free is very simple to start up -- pick a category, and then tap the letters to guess. In two-player mode, the app will ask the players to take turns entering their own words and taking guesses. Some of the categories have slightly more challenging vocabulary.

Violence

The cartoon man makes angry gestures and worried looks as he appears. When you lose, a hooded hangman appears and pulls the lever -- the hanged man drops through a trapdoor and isn't visible when he dies.

Sex
Language

While players can enter any word (even nonsensical words) in the two-player mode for each other to guess, the included words in the one-player mode are unobjectionable.

Consumerism

The main menu has a link for more games from the developer. There is also a prominent button on the main menu screen to purchase the full version. However, the free version fun and playable without upgrading.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Doodle Hangman Free is an app version of the traditional hangman word game for one or two players. When players guess incorrectly, the man's body parts are added to the drawing, and he struggles, gestures, weeps, and ultimately hangs. In addition to the cartoon violence, some of the categories have difficult vocabulary. The cartoon violence and difficult vocabulary in some categories make the app best for tweens and up. The app is connected to OpenFeint, an interactive social network, but participation is optional. 

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What's it about?

Players choose from four gameplay options: single player, two player, \"bump,\" and multiplayer. The multiplayer mode is only available if players have enabled OpenFeint. In single-player mode, players select from 11 categories or choose \"random.\" The app selects a word, and players try to guess the word by selecting letters. In two-player and bump modes, players create a word for their opponents to guess. With each incorrect response, a portion of the hanged man gets drawn (head, body, arms, etc.).

Is it any good?

What if the drawing in hangman came to life? That's the idea behind DOODLE HANGMAN FREE, the free version of Ultimate Hangman. As you make incorrect guesses and the man starts to appear, he makes various faces and gestures, getting more and more anxious. It's an entertaining addition that kids may enjoy but doesn't change much from the actual gameplay. The backgrounds on various types of paper are a nice touch.

The various categories provided are a good way to restrict the type of words you can guess. "Random" can be very difficult, as it could include anything from "face" to the element "technetium." The two-player mode allows players to take turns entering words for the other player to guess, and the game lasts until one player fails to solve a word. Overall, it's a cute adaptation of hangman if you're OK with the cartoon violence.

App details

For kids who love words

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