App review by
Chris Morris, Common Sense Media
Monkonomix App Poster Image
Puzzle game confuses with unclear instructions, iffy humor.

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A lot or a little?

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

Ease of Play

The game's instructions aren't made clear at the beginning, and the onscreen text is hard to read. As a result, players fumble around trying to figure out what to do -- even after reading the help screen. The small size of the gems you manipulate don't work in the game's favor, either. 


There's no cursing, but the lead character does mumble (via onscreen text) things like "Are you &[email protected]$#* with me?" and uses phrases like "Shut up."

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

One monkey refers to another as a "drunken haggard."

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Monkonomix is a puzzle game that incorporates physics and balance. The game elements are fine, but the "banter" between the monkeys might be objectionable to parents of younger children, due to the use of words like "Shut up" and cartoon-level swear words used in context (i.e. "Are you &[email protected]$#* with me?"). The game's instructions are unclear, which might cause some confusion and frustration as well.

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Is it any good?

Attempting something new in the dropping puzzle genre is certainly admirable -- and MONKONOMIX has the gem (pun somewhat intended) of a good idea, but it falls short on execution. Barely legible onscreen text and the lack of a clear objective and tutorial in the early levels throws the player in the deep end without any solid idea of what they're supposed to so. An onscreen question mark pulls up a help screen, but even that information is less than crystal clear. 

The game's attempts at humor are hit and miss. The attitude of the main character is one that might alienate some parents and seems out of place with the otherwise family friendly puzzle game. Should the developers go back and rework how players are introduced to the game, this might be worth your while -- but as it stands now, it's an easy pass. 

App details

  • Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad
  • Price: $.99
  • Release date: November 18, 2011
  • Category: Puzzle Games
  • Size: 22.20 MB
  • Publisher: Big Boot Games
  • Version: 1.2
  • Minimum software requirements: iOS 4.0 or later
  • Last updated: August 25, 2016

Our editors recommend

For kids who love puzzles

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