Game Dev Story

Common Sense Media says

Hidden instructions hamper fun in video-game company sim.

Age(i)

2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17

Quality(i)

 

Learning(i)

What parents need to know

Ease of play

The app isn't all that intuitive to start with. The game leads you through the initial steps, but there's very little guidance as to why you would make one decision over another. The actual instructions are buried in the in-game menu. 

Violence
Not applicable
Sex

There is almost no sexual content in the game, but it does make reference to "booth babes." Although it's not really portrayed in the game, they are usually skimpily/sexily clad women who work at trade shows selling/demonstrating products.

Language
Not applicable
Consumerism

An in-game link connects to the publisher's website.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable
Privacy & safety
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Game Dev Story is a fun simulation game for players willing to dig around a bit to find the instructions. The game follows the growth of your video game development company as you hire employees, choose game genres, pay for advertising, and make as much money as you can. Great games can earn awards at an annual ceremony or get a best-seller nod. As time passes, new consoles are released and you'll have to purchase license rights in order to stay competitive. You have 20 game years to get the best score possible. After that point, you can keep playing (without a new score) or start a new company.

What kids can learn

Subjects

Language & Reading

  • following directions
  • reading comprehension

Math

  • subtraction
  • money
  • statistics

Social Studies

  • power structures
  • the economy

Skills

Thinking & Reasoning

  • strategy
  • applying information
  • decision-making

Self-Direction

  • initiative
  • time management
  • achieving goals

Emotional Development

  • persevering
  • handling stress

Collaboration

  • group projects
  • teamwork

Engagement, Approach, Support

Engagement

Learning Approach

Aspiring game developers will discover some of the aspects of managing a game development company like salaries, skills, reviews, awards, and genres, however, it's not always clear how a particular decision impacts the overall results.

Support

The actual instructions are buried in the in-game menu. The company secretary guides kids through the basics and then prompts and offers clues throughout play, but there's very little guidance as to why you would make one decision over another.

What kids can learn

Subjects

Language & Reading

  • following directions
  • reading comprehension

Math

  • subtraction
  • money
  • statistics

Social Studies

  • power structures
  • the economy

Skills

Thinking & Reasoning

  • strategy
  • applying information
  • decision-making

Self-Direction

  • initiative
  • time management
  • achieving goals

Emotional Development

  • persevering
  • handling stress

Collaboration

  • group projects
  • teamwork

Kids can learn to read and follow directions, monitor monetary and human resources, and discover some of the aspects of managing a game development company. Kids must persevere and monitor timelines while handling the stress of low sales or so-so reviews. Kids can decide whether to develop a new game, do contract work, or change their usual genre. Game Dev Story is a moderately engaging sim app that might spark some business enthusiasm in dedicated gamers.

This Learning Rating review was written by Leslie Crenna

Parents say

Kids say

What's it about?

The app immediately establishes the game development simulation. Kids must select and double-click menu and dialogue items to hire, develop a new game, or enter into a contract to generate revenue. The secretary prompts and offers clues about strategies to increase sales, earn good reviews, and win the yearly game grand prize.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

GAME DEV STORY suffers from the lack of clear instructions early on. Unless you browse through the entire menu and stumble across the instructions, you're likely to feel a bit lost. You'll know what to do, but not why. The game includes plenty of subtle humor, and the gameplay is engaging, but It's not always clear how a particular decision impacts the results. Still, if you're feeling patient and video game development appeals to you, this one might be worth it in the end.

Families can talk about...

  • Help your aspiring game developer research a particular "dev" company.

  • Bring your kid to work and spend some time demonstrating teamwork.

  • Does your kid have a favorite game developer? What are some of the things about that developer's games that appeal to your kid? Are there common themes?

App details

Devices:iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Android
Price:$3.99
Release date:October 9, 2010
Category:Simulation Games
Publisher:Kairosoft Co.
Version:1.0.0
Minimum software requirements:OS 3.1 or later

This review of Game Dev Story was written by

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

Find out more

Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

Find out more

Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging, great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging, good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging, good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging, okay learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

Find out more

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What parents and kids say

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Teen, 14 years old Written byThe Review Guy October 13, 2011
AGE
12
QUALITY
 

Creative,Fun,and Unique app looks into the video game Industry

Parents need to know that is app,which looks into the video game industry,will most likely not interset kids,but this app is very tame,and if they do get the chance then they're in for a treat. Educational Value:2/5 This app is very educational and shows gamers how to run a video game company. Ease of Play:3/5 Although it will take gamers time to get use to the cluttered menus,learning how to play the game is very easy. Messages:4/5 The messages here are positive,it show gamers how to run their own company,which will help them in the future. Role Models:3/5 Yes the people in this app promote video games,but they also promote running your own company which do make make them positive role models. Violence:1/5 There's no actual violence,but there are video game types such as "Action" and "Shooter" that are actually violent,but gamers don't actually see their created games. Sex:1/5 No Sexual Content,but there are reference's to "booth babes"and gamers do see booth babes scantly clad,but because it's all pixel,nothing actually sexy is shown. Language:0/5 Not an issue Consumerism:1/5 There's a link that leads to the developer's website,but there's no actual product placement. Drinking,Drugs and Smoking:0/5 Not an issue Privacy Concerns:0/5 Not an issue Is it any good:Combining Strategy/Simulation and Video games can have good results.Kairosofts's debut app will be known as they're game that started it all,with witty writing,cute visuals,and a good amount of creativity,Game Dev Story will have those with ideas for their next big games in this app.It could have been deeper,but this is already a great app,and an excellent start for a long running series of apps relatable to this. Why it's on my Favorite's list:For those not familar with Game Dev Story,it's a Simulation app where you run your own Video game company.There's no more to explain,because Game Dev Story is a Unique and deep app that let's gamers express they're creativity.Getting plenty of positive reviews and talk of another app,Kairosoft has crafted excellence in just one app,and that's why we should all hail to Game Dev Story.
What other families should know
Educational value
Great messages
Great role models
Parent of a 12 year old Written byHedgieguy11 January 15, 2011
AGE
8
QUALITY
 

FUN

FUN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! very very fun.
What other families should know
Too much sex
Educational value
Kid, 11 years old April 9, 2011
AGE
10
QUALITY
 

WARNING: You might not get sleep

I love this game! Theres nothing bad about this game at all. It might be a little confusing and hard for younger kids though, and yes its pricey. But its fun! Heh, but the sounds are really annoying. Its easy to become an millionare, and to make a big hit. You should buy it, no matter what the price (:
What other families should know
Educational value

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