App review by
Chris Morris, Common Sense Media
Numberlys App Poster Image
Charming story will spark imaginations as kids learn ABCs.

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A lot or a little?

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

Educational Value

Kids can learn the alphabet in a unique and engaging way, through the combination of an entertaining story that plays out much like a feature film and mini-games that help them "create" letters. With its just-right pace, Numberlys is an alphabet app kids will want to play and watch again and again. 

Ease of Play

Most of the games played to form the letters are pretty easy, though some might be challenging for younger players. All can be skipped without penalty, though. 

Violence & Scariness

One of the letters is formed by "shooting" a gun at a series of numbers.

Sexy Stuff
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Numberlys is an incredibly creative app that is designed to teach kids the alphabet. Made by a designer who formerly worked at Pixar, the app is more story than game but is engaging and will capture children's imaginations.

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What's it about?

Set in a gray, dystopian world where only numbers exist, a quintet of friends decides to create the alphabet. Players assist them in a series of mini-games, such as touching lights on the screen, positioning the hands on a clock to form a letter, and shooting "number cannons" to break blocks into numbers. If the games prove too challenging, players can skip them without penalty.

Is it any good?

NUMBERLYS isn't good -- it's great. It's created by a former Pixar designer, and the story behind this imaginative telling of the creation of the alphabet is charming, funny, and beautiful. It's certain to capture a child's attention -- perhaps more so than any learning app on the market to date. 

As much a story as a game, the app is fun for kids who enjoy playing games but easily doubles as a storybook, since all games/puzzles can be skipped without penalty. The characters are cute. The lessons are useful in real life. And the price, although high, is not unreasonable for the quality. 

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about alliteration. Encourage kids to come up with other words that start with each letter and make up silly sentences.

  • Play an alphabet game in the car, searching for specific letters of the alphabet in the environment -- on signs, license plates, and more.

App details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love to learn

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