App review by
Erin Brereton, Common Sense Media
Plank! App Poster Image
Frequent ads mar otherwise enjoyable puzzle experience.

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A lot or a little?

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

Ease of Play

Players see instructions initially and get some information about new developments as they advance; more would be great, though, as it isn't always clear what new avatars and other elements mean in relation to gameplay.

Violence & Scariness

Players fall, presumably to their death, if their plank isn't the right length, but there's no blood or gore shown.


Sexy Stuff

The app shows ads frequently -- between pretty much every round; users can pay to remove them. (Typically that costs $2.99; the app is currently offering the option for $1.99.)


Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Plank! is a puzzle game for iOS and Android devices. The gameplay initially seems simple, involving players estimating distance and length. Much of this involves guesswork more than actual skill. Players can also take advantage of an augmented reality option, if they have access to Wi-Fi, to play the game in a whole new way. Users will see an overwhelming amount of ads as they play. There seems to be an ad playing almost every time you're not, and some are fairly lengthy, which can only be avoided by paying a fee. Otherwise, there's no inappropriate content in the game.

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What's it about?

In PLANK!, players swipe across the screen to determine the length of a board that will stretch across a divide so that they can cross. If the board is too long or too short, they'll fall into the abyss, and the game ends. A bar at the top of the screen shows how far they've progressed in the round. Along the way, they'll pick up points and other items, such as pets, which then follow them across each plank, and new avatars, like a carpenter. An augmented reality (AR) option lets players project 3D structures and play within their current environment.

Is it any good?

This app-based puzzle game isn't overly complicated and is generally fun to play, as long as you can handle the flood of ads that run during the game. In addition to getting slightly more difficult with each round, Plank! adds new pets and avatars to the mix periodically, which helps keep the game interesting as you progress -- although including more information about what purpose they serve in the game would be helpful.

Some of the avatars are oddly named -- one, for example, is called Old Woman, and another is referred to as Casual Woman, which seems somewhat random; figuring out how long to make each plank can also be a little confusing. Occasionally, you're able to draw an arch to help determine distance and length, but there are no numeric measurement tools to work with. The ads, though, are what pose the real problem in the game. You'll see one after pretty much every round. Since misjudging the plank length means you'll fall and the game will immediately end, some rounds can be really short -- and the ads can start to feel really intrusive. The augmented reality (AR) version of the game is better, because in addition to offering a cool new viewpoint, players are allowed to fall a few times without the round ending, so games last longer. Players need a Wi-Fi connection to use the AR option, though. Reducing the number of ad-related delays and/or including a similar do-over option in the regular version of the game would help make the playing experience less frustrating. Otherwise, even though the game is fun, gamers may not be interested in playing Plank! for long.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about setting screen time limits. How much time is too much to spend on an app? What are some other things you could do that don't involve extra screen time?

  • Families can talk about not giving up, even if you get frustrated. If you keep falling off structures in the game because you can't figure out how long to make the plank, how can you view it as a learning experience, instead of a failure?

App details

  • Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Android
  • Pricing structure: Free
  • Release date: May 24, 2019
  • Category: Action Games
  • Size: 121.00 MB
  • Publisher: Kwalee Ltd
  • Version: 1.1.0
  • Minimum software requirements: Requires Android 4.3 and up or iOS 10.0 or later.
  • Last updated: February 12, 2020

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