Parents' Guide to


By Chris Morris, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 12+

An easy way to learn game creation, with some small risks.

App iPhone , iPod Touch , iPad Free Other
Playbyte Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this app.

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Is It Any Good?

Our review:
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Encouraging STEM skills in kids without it being preachy can be challenging, but this app succeeds in making coding interesting and fun, without seeming like an extension of schoolwork. Game creation in Playbyte is easy, but once you've played a few titles from people who have mastered the skill, you'll want to make your own creations more involved and challenging. You might want to beef up the story element. Or you might want to start over and create a new title in a different universe. While it's nice to get hearts and comments, the real joy is in creation, which is a nice change of pace.

The games themselves are rudimentary by design, but that doesn't mean they can't be fun. And because they utilize a smiling, cowboy hat-wearing emoji as the hero, they're accessible to pretty much anyone. Non-player characters, companions and other faces on screen are emojis, which can be set to a wide variety of races. There's the possibility you'll encounter harsh language or inappropriate content, since it's all user-generated content, but the reporting system is easy to understand and most games included don't aim to shock its players. Overall, Playbyte is fun -- and it makes learning fun. And these days, that's a rare combination.

App Details

  • Devices: iPhone , iPod Touch , iPad
  • Pricing structure: Free
  • Release date: October 5, 2021
  • Category: Other
  • Topics: STEM
  • Publisher: Playbyte Inc.
  • Version: 1.5
  • Minimum software requirements: Requires iOS 14.0 or later
  • Last updated: October 20, 2021

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