Ice Math Ninjas: ZERO
What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know Ice Math Ninja: ZERO is a Fruit Ninja style arcade slicing game where kids slice numbers instead of fruit. Kids will dig the rapid search-and-slice gameplay, the interactive character-based narrative and feedback, and, of course, the cute little bear Tushka, and his penguin buddy, Pookie. Math skills covered include evens, odds, addition, and multiplication. In-app links to Facebook and Twitter can be toggled off/on by any user.
What kids can learn
Thinking & Reasoning
- applying information
- academic development
- working efficiently
Engagement, Approach, Support
Arcade-style play is fast-paced and fun, and characters are tough and cute at the same time.
Concepts are sparse, data isn't saved, factor explanation is a bit flawed, and kids can't control or ramp up difficulty other than increasing pace.
Help text is small, and the upside-down 6 and 9 numerals can be a challenge to identify as numbers are flying.
What's it about?
ICE MATH NINJA: ZERO has five games in the full version. Sub-Zero Mines asks kids to slice everything but zeroes; in Polar Pair, kids are asked to slice even or odd numbers; and Cool 21 asks kids to slice a series of numbers adding to 21. Antarctic Add and Ice Factor provide addition or multiplication problems, and kids must slice the sum or factors. Kids can choose easy, medium, hard, or lightning difficulty.
Is it any good?
Ice Math Ninja: ZERO is an addictive and adorable set of arcade style slicing games (think Fruit Ninja) that'll be a blast for kids who need a little extra practice with math facts, but is also great fun for older kids and adults who simply enjoy the gameplay. Kids help Tushka the Polar Bear and Pookie the Penguin (who do not live in the same hemisphere in real life) slice up frozen numbers to preserve the energies of the Icelands. Gameplay keeps kids on their toes scanning for target numbers and avoiding others, and throws in variety with frozen Pookies, gratuitous slicing opportunities, and other bonuses. In all five games, if kids miss or don't work quickly enough, they freeze, but can retry endlessly. Childlike Pookie and Tushka voices provide encouragement and humor throughout.
Unfortunately, there is no way to add greater difficulty with multi-digit numbers, and data is not saved from one session to another. The app lacks games focusing specifically on subtraction and division (for example, a subtraction equivalent for the Antarctic Add game). Explanation of factors is a bit inaccurate, and download size is off the charts. Still, for quick-hit practice Ice Math Ninja: ZERO will get your kid trying and engaged.