A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this app.
Ease of Play
There are no instructions, but there's really no need. Once you see the rag doll, start poking and you'll get the idea.
Violence & Scariness
The entire point of the app is to abuse and torture a rag doll. Users can use a variety of weapons from pistols to bazookas to land mines and more. The doll occasionally begs for mercy and makes moaning sounds, but the worst that happens to it is he gets knocked out.
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Products & Purchases
To get additional weapons, users need to use in-game dollars. If they prefer not to wait to bank enough money through the course of the app, they can purchase them for $1.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Kick the Buddy is an electronic equivalent of a stress release toy. Users fling the rag doll around the screen and assault it with pretty much any weapon you can imagine, from pistols to shotguns to bombs to ... well, baseball mitts. There's no malicious agenda to the violence, though. It's done in a humorous vein. The game does have in-app purchases, but they're not aggressively marketed at the player.
Is It Any Good?
There's unquestionably something cathartic about taking out your frustrations on a rag doll, especially one that flings trash talk your way before begging for mercy. And while KICK THE BUDDY isn't an app for young kids, those old enough to realize it's just fantasy and stress releasing will have fun coming up with creative ways to assault the smiling little fellow.
It's hardly an app that's one you want to spend a lot of time with, though. Even with the variety of weapons, the core mechanic is the same and it gets old after a while. You might return to it from time to time, but you'll wonder why you spent a few bucks on this when you do.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.