Flea Symphony

App review by
Kim Alessi, Common Sense Media
Flea Symphony App Poster Image
Clever rhythm puzzle gets challenging quickly.

Parents say

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Kids say

age 6+
Based on 1 review

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A lot or a little?

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

Educational Value

Kids can learn music notation, rhythm, and mechanics. They're introduced to graphic notation, a notation that uses pictures along a musical staff. The distance between pictures determines the song's rhythm. More space means more time between beats; closer pictures means beats are played more quickly. Kids can exercise listening, fine motor skills, and hand-eye coordination by moving the instruments to match the notation on the musical staff. Kids can also explore basic physics by maneuvering the game's mechanisms. While the game's pacing might frustrate young players, overall it's a good introduction to rhythm, strategy, and mechanics.

Ease of Play

Flea Symphony begins as a simple game to play, but it ramps up in fits and starts with easy levels juxtaposed next to hard levels. It's also tricky finding your way back into the game if you explore the numerous in-app links; in some cases, players have to quit the app entirely and restart to get back to the game. 

Violence & Scariness
Sexy Stuff

There are several in-app links that take players out of Flea Symphony, including links to featured games of the day (complete with bold "Free!" or "Download Now!" verbiage and images). The app contains five worlds, but only one comes with the initial purchase; the remaining worlds cost $.99 each to unlock with in-app purchase.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Flea Symphony is a challenging music puzzle game based on rhythm, physics, and strategy. The game is multilevel and quickly increases in difficulty, and has high replay value. The theme is an old-time flea circus where players bounce fleas off musical instruments that are mounted on intricate mechanics -- all in rhythm to a picture-based music timeline. The game's not forgiving, and often, quick two-finger motions are needed for successful gameplay. Still, the synchronized images, sounds, and strategy can rope you for a high-wire rhythmic challenge. Parents should know that the app has options to share via social media and fees to unlock higher levels.

User Reviews

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  • Kids say

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Kid, 10 years old May 16, 2015

Good app, but don't assume that it's associated with music

I own this app, and I think that it's pretty fun. There are levels, and with each level, you unlock different instruments. The little flea is very cute. Ba... Continue reading

What's it about?

The game begins when a flea is blown out of a horn. Using trial and error, kids move musical instruments to bounce the flea into a red bell -- all in time and corresponding to pictures notated on a musical staff. Off-rhythm bounces show up as a blue line where the beat's too early or late. When instruments are properly aligned, the flea bounces in rhythm, which highlights the notation and advances players to the next level. Each world brings more intricate instruments and mechanics, making the game increasingly challenging.

Is it any good?

FLEA SYMPHONY is all about rhythm, physics, and timing. The game is very imaginative and its sights and sounds are great (for even more stunning visuals, Retina iPad can download the Retina asset pack, which is available as a separate 90 MB download). While the game's objective is simple, Flea Symphony is a tricky time-based, trial and error puzzler. The pacing of levels is sometimes odd, with easy puzzles followed by really challenging ones. In either case, the picture notation musical staff is indispensable because it gives kids a visual rhythmic phrase to match -- if your beat's a little early, lower the instrument; if your beat's a bit late, raise it up some. It's really rewarding when everything lines up -- the game lights up and players are washed with a short but very pleasing rhythmic symphony.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Music is made up of individual notes which, when played together, makes a song. Talk about how music can be written down using notes or other forms of representation.

  • Explore the branch of physics known as mechanics by bouncing a ball off different surfaces. Ask kids to predict how a ball will bounce on flat, angled, and curved surfaces.

App details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love puzzles and music

Themes & Topics

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