A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this app.
RedRoverGame wasn't created with educational intent, and we don't recommend it for learning.
Ease of Play
This game isn't all that easy to grasp at first, especially for younger players. Kids have to read the tutorial (there's no audio tutorial), and the explanations aren't that clearly written. Even if a kid has played Red Rover in real life, the game has mini-games within the main game as well as some other features that don't make intuitive sense. If kids haven't played the game in real life, this app will likely make even less sense at first. The music can be turned off in the options, as can sound effects and autozoom.
Violence & Scariness
Kids run and try to break through the line of a hand-holding team on the other side of the playground. In Arcade mode, "bullies" try to break through your team's line and the app instructs kids to "defend at all cost." Nothing dramatic or violent here, although the same might not be said if kids take the app game to the real-life playground without any guidelines.
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Products & Purchases
In-app purchases are available for deluxe badge ($1.99) and "sticky glue" ($.99). Banner ads scroll at the bottom of the main screen, some for games that are clearly not for kids. When a round ends, kids see an icon to "Buy Deluxe Version."
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that RedRoverGame is an app version of the traditional playground game, but it may not be as fun as in real life (even if it is a little safer). Many kids may find RedRoverGame confusing, and the only tutorial is a lengthy, text-based set of instruction screens. In addition, the onslaught of ads on the free version includes some that aren't kid appropriate such as ads for online chat sites and poker.
Is It Any Good?
REDROVERGAME gives the old playground standby an overhaul but not in a good way. The added mini-games aren't related in any direct way to the actual Red Rover game that's played on the app or on the playground, so they're just distracting. If kids don't intuitively understand the main game, the long written instructions may help, but it will likely be a challenge for kids to read them. Even more problematic, though, is the word "BAD" popping up when kids don't succeed in a game, the instruction to "defend at all cost," and the constant ads selling iffy games and other online entertainment. Even though Red Rover is a game in real life that's played by younger grade-school age kids, this app is definitely not for them. And many older kids most likely won't enjoy it either.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.