EPIC Adventures - Kids Stories

App review by
Christy Matte, Common Sense Media
EPIC Adventures - Kids Stories App Poster Image
Unique tale has links to offscreen activities, no narration.

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A lot or a little?

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

Educational Value

Kids may work on their reading and reading comprehension skills, but without narration, that may be limited. Kids may also be encouraged to think creatively.

Ease of Play

Easy to navigate overall, including a fun map to get from chapter to chapter. Lacking narration. 

Violence & Scariness

Mild violence and peril, including a number of different monsters, some of whom are unfriendly.

Sexy Stuff
Language
Consumerism

Each chapter has a link to an activity on the website. It's blocked by a parent gate, but the activities are heavily pushed.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that EPIC Adventures - Kids Stories is a quirky ebook adventure story called Havoc in a Hippo. It's tied to a subscription service called "The Adventurer's Club," which is meant to promote creativity and curiosity in kids and will eventually include even more offscreen materials. Since there's no narration option, kids will either need a decent reading level or an adult to help them out. The tale itself includes some peril and mild violence: Kids meet a number of monsters, and some of them are not friendly. Between each chapter, kids are encouraged to visit the website to take on an activity related to the story, such as a craft. The links are blocked by a parent gate, which consists of questions like what's the purpose of a VCR, what's the answer to 7 x 7,  and being able to recognize a scientist's name out of a lineup. They may or may not keep your kids from progressing, depending on their pop culture knowledge. Read the app's privacy policy to find out about the information collected and shared.

User Reviews

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What's it about?

EPIC ADVENTURES - KIDS STORIES weaves a tale about brothers Oscar and Hugo who go through a magic door with their pet potato Mr. Pots. They find themselves inside a hippopotamus on an unusual adventure involving all manner of creatures, friendly and not. The brothers must work their way through, avoiding danger, making new friends, and working together to stay safe. Each chapter has an activity tied to it on the website, such as making vampire slug jelly and making a "Hook-a-butterfly" game. There are two interactive games: One has kids flinging the brothers at vampire slugs and another asks kids to tickle the hippo's nose.

Is it any good?

This creative tale will appeal to some kids with a sense of adventure, and an unusual set of characters, but note that there are no reading supports at the time of review. It's always nice to find something that isn't just the same old story, and the corresponding activities look like they'll be fun for kids who have a grown-up with some free time. By conscious development choice, the app lacks interactivity through most of the tale, so kids shouldn't expect lots of content to tap. And when suddenly there are a couple of in-app activities toward the end, they seem out of place. There's no narration, making it less accessible for a range of ages and skills. Though it lacks some features that many parents expect in an ebook, there is a great focus on offscreen adventures and learning, which is appealing in its own right.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about using imagination. Does EPIC Adventures - Kids Stories help you imagine? What would you like to find behind a magic door?

  • Talk about family. Why is family important? What are some times when your family worked together like the boys in the story?

  • Talk to your kids about screen use and limits. How can kids enjoy digital media in balance with other activities?

App details

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