Perchang

App review by
Galen McQuillen, Common Sense Media
Perchang App Poster Image
Lovely minimalist Rube Goldberg puzzler with a techno edge.

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A lot or a little?

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

Educational Value

Kids will have to problem-solve as they begin each level and figure out how to reach the goals of the game. As they play, they'll have to figure out each contraption and the physics that propel the marbles where they need to go.

Ease of Play

Perchang's controls are extremely easy: Press the red button to control red elements and the blue button to control blue elements. Tap elements to change their color. Everything's very responsive, and all menus are easy to navigate.

Violence & Scariness
Sexy Stuff
Language
Consumerism
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Perchang is a puzzle game with Rube Goldberg machines where players control various elements to successfully guide a continuous stream of balls to an endpoint within a given amount of time. There's no violence, sex, language, flashy characters, or in-app purchases -- just 60 levels of finessed puzzle fun for two bucks. It's possible to access Facebook via the app, so parents can decide if they want to give their kids access. Read the app's privacy policy to find out about the types of information collected and shared.

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What's it about?

PERCHANG is a procedural puzzle game where players press red and blue buttons to control various elements in a complicated machine. Through all kinds of mechanisms, users guide a set of balls from their origin to a fixed endpoint. Each level requires pressing the right sequence of buttons and changing the color of platforms and ramps to alter their controls to get a certain number of balls to the goal within a specified time. Completing levels faster earns bronze, silver, and gold stars, depending on the time, and as levels are cleared, more difficult areas open up for a total of 60 puzzles. Later levels add fans that float balls in the air with realistic physics, requiring a light touch and plenty of finesse to clear. Players can compare scores via Facebook.

Is it any good?

Plenty of fun with very light time commitments, this puzzler has levels that only take a few seconds to complete and give a nice sense of satisfaction when earning those gold stars. Perchang's controls all are very responsive, making finesse plays possible, and the charming instrumental soundtrack adds a bit of character to the otherwise spartan experience. The minimalist grayscale color scheme sets the game apart from competitors, as do the nicely rendered 3D graphics. Some kids may find the time limits anxiety-provoking, but even if you fail a level, you can always try again, so the pressure is minimal. Parents may want to set expectations around the link to Facebook; though not in your face, it's still readily accessible. For kids who like puzzles and projectiles, Perchang is a direct hit with lots of charm.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about procedural problem-solving like the kind Perchang requires. Sometimes getting past a tough level (or a tough homework assignment or a chore at home) can require a set of carefully timed steps. How can we make a careful plan by watching for patterns, experimenting, then working out a solution before jumping into the action?

  • Also discuss the value of persistence. It's not always possible or easy to get something right the first or even the 15th time. Sometimes lots of practice is required to earn that gold star, and sometimes it comes pretty easily. 

App details

For kids who love puzzle and engineering apps

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