Parents' Guide to

Puzzle Planets

By Jonathan H. Liu, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 10+

Not much science in fun but repetitive Nat Geo app.

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PUZZLE PLANETS is a game from National Geographic about forming planets: first the tectonic plates are put together; then mountains, rifts, and volcanoes are formed; and finally the continents are seeded with life. Each of the 15 planets plays out in these three phases, with the player spinning the planet to match up tectonic plates, pinching and spreading areas to create continents, and then spinning again to create life. The planet's profile screen will show an imaginary creature in one of three evolutionary stages depending on how quickly the planet was successfully completed.

The gameplay is sort of fun but repetitive; after a few planets the only value in playing again is to improve times to see all three stages of all the creatures. However, with only 15 planets the entire game can be played in about an hour or so. Also, although the game does follow the stages of geological planet formation, there is very little science other than that basic idea.

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