A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this app.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Ed Emberley's Shake & Make is a surprisingly challenging picture puzzle game based on the artwork of famed illustrator and art teacher, Ed Emberley. You start with one of Emberley's drawings, shake your device to scatter the pieces, and then put it back together. The tough part comes from so many of the pieces looking so much alike -- many are just straight black lines. Younger kids can choose to play without a timer, and hints are available with a simple tap. In addition to just being puzzles, though, each image -- composed of simple shapes and lines -- is meant to be easy for kids to recreate in their own artwork.
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What's it about?
Kids shake the device to break apart pictures, many of which may be familiar to kids from Ed Emberley’s books like Go Away Big, Green Monster and Drummer Hoff. They'll then drag the shapes and lines back into place to recreate the picture. Kids have 60 seconds to solve each puzzle, but the timer can be turned off. Kids can get a hint, which shows the completed picture, but will lose five seconds off the clock for taking a hint. Solving easier puzzles unlocks more challenging puzzles.
Is it any good?
ED EMBERLEY'S SHAKE & MAKE is fun, first of all, in that it lets you play with the famed illustrator's unique and whimsical artwork. And while it may look like a game for very young kids, it's got a pleasantly surprising amount of challenge for older kids and adults. The pieces continue to float around the screen as you try to piece them together, which in itself adds quite a bit of difficulty. But there are enough aids to help younger kids make it through and have a lot of fun with the puzzles. In addition, separating and reconstructing the clean, simple shapes and lines of Emberley's illustrations is a de facto method for teaching you how to draw them yourself. If you see that a bird, for instance, is made up of an oval body, a circle head, a triangle beak, and a few lines for legs -- you can recreate that bird drawing yourself with paper and pencil. It's pretty ingenious.
Talk to your kids about ...
- Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad
- Subjects: Arts: drawing
- Skills: Thinking & Reasoning: memorization, solving puzzles
- Price: $1.99
- Release date: April 30, 2011
- Category: Puzzle Games
- Size: 58.90 MB
- Publisher: Night & Day Studios, Inc.
- Version: 1.0
- Minimum software requirements: iOS 4.1 or later
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