Finding Dory: Just Keep Swimming

App review by
Dana Anderson, Common Sense Media
Finding Dory: Just Keep Swimming App Poster Image
Help forgetful Dory collect bubbles and make funny stories.

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A lot or a little?

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

Ease of Play

Very easy to play with audio directions, reminders, and a detailed explainer for parents in the menu. Fine motor control and hand-eye coordination necessary.

Violence & Scariness
Sexy Stuff
Language
Consumerism

The app ties in to the Disney movie Finding Dory. Links to other Disney apps are hidden behind a kid-lock screen in the parents section.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Finding Dory: Just Keep Swimming is a game developed to promote the Finding Dory movie. The side-scrolling, bubble-collecting adventure is a story-driven game. Kids move Dory through underwater worlds such as shipwrecks and kelp forests as she looks for her parents. She collects bubbles for points, avoids obstacles, and finds her movie friends, such as Nemo, Hank, and more. Read the app's privacy policy to find out about the information collected and shared.

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What's it about?

Tap and hold the area around the screen where you want Dory to move in FINDING DORY: JUST KEEP SWIMMING. Move Dory in the direction of the bubbles to earn points (bigger bubbles equal more points). Avoid hazards -- such as spiky fish -- so you don't lose points, and collect the friends that Dory requests: "If I could find six crabs, I bet someone will know where my parents are." Kids also get to choose objects based on Dory's descriptions to complete Mad Libs-type stories, though it doesn't really matter which objects kids choose. You can earn three stars on each level and must complete one to move on to the next. There are 11 levels until the pre-movie release and two more after the movie is in theaters.

Is it any good?

This easy, side-scrolling game is oceans of fun for Dory fans, and the stories add a creative touch. There are so many levels, each with unique characteristics but consistent gameplay to keep it interesting but not too challenging for young app users. One thing to watch for: When it's time for a player to choose one of three objects, Dory says some silly clues that don't make much sense, which may confuse some kids until they get further into the game. Once kids understand how their choices appear later in the silly story, however, they'll likely have some good laughs. It's not necessary to see the movie before playing on this app, but knowing the movie's storyline likely adds to the experience. Since Dory's poor memory is featured in the game, it's too bad kids don't actually have to remember anything for her, though they're instructed to. Also, gameplay might get repetitive for older kids, though the story might carry them along.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about marketing to kids. Why do companies make apps to promote movies? Does playing the app make you want to see the movie or vice versa?

  • Talk about the underwater world you see as Dory moves along the game. Encourage your kid to learn the names of coral, fish, and other sea life and objects that Dory passes.

  • Encourage your kids to anticipate how Dory will use the objects they choose, then talk about what really happens in the silly stories. Consider making up some yourself using a homemade or purchased Mad Libs-style book.

App details

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For kids who love Disney characters and animals

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