RollerCoaster Tycoon Story

App review by
Erin Brereton, Common Sense Media
RollerCoaster Tycoon Story App Poster Image
Speedier gameplay would make these puzzles a more fun ride.

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A lot or a little?

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

Ease of Play

Main character you interact with provides detailed instructions before each game and before players test out any new features. Players can view a list of tasks at any time.

Violence & Scariness
Sexy Stuff

In-app purchases ranging from $0.99 to $99 are offered. This is the latest game in the RollerCoaster Tycoon franchise.


Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that RollerCoaster Tycoon Story is a puzzle game for iOS and Android devices. The game is a spin-off of a long-running franchise that centered on building a theme park. The action here primarily involves playing matching games, although as gamers advance levels, they'll help fix up the amusement park and access new areas. The app is free to use, and players can fund some activities involved with currency they earn while playing. But the app also sells a number of items to advance gameplay that cost real-world cash, with packages ranging from $0.99 to $99.99.

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What's it about?

In ROLLERCOASTER TYCOON STORY, players work to restore a theme park that's in despair by solving matching games. They can line up items in various ways, such as shifting tracks they're on to match a requested amount of light bulbs. Tickets they earn help them complete tasks, such as repairing rides and cleaning up the grounds. Sam, a mechanic, helps you before each mission and explains what's next. Players also earn boosters to help clear items quickly from game boards, and unlock additional park areas and classic rides from previous games in the series.

Is it any good?

The puzzles get progressively more challenging as gamers play, thanks to elements you don't always see in similar apps. RollerCoaster Tycoon Story changes gameplay up by letting players line up items in an L-shape, for example, to clear them from the board, instead of just putting three together vertically. After a few rounds, they're no longer just sliding items back in forth in horizontal and vertical rows. In addition, players get hints at times and are rewarded for finishing games in fewer moves than have been allotted, which encourages them to pause and think about a strategy.

Players also get a number of bonus items to help them remove items from game boards faster. While those definitely help, introducing one in essentially every round really slows down the pace. A character has to explain how it works, and players test it out before they can actually start playing. The ongoing storyline also moves somewhat slowly, since players continually complete and receive tasks to renovate and access more areas of the park. Hitting the skip option to bypass a character's dialogue just takes players to the next line, so that doesn't save much time. As a result, you may wish the puzzles moved a little more quickly. If players stumble as the rounds get more challenging, they can replay one stage for a balloon. They'll have to go through the entire description of the new bonus item before they can use it again, though, and they could potentially burn through the six balloons they're given and run out of lives. They'd then have to buy a life with coins or wait a half-hour for one to replenish. That system could potentially add even more delays -- which might make it hard for gamers to be excited about what will happen next in RollerCoaster Tycoon Story.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about strategies to use when problem-solving. How can players create a plan to complete puzzles in RollerCoaster Tycoon Story?

  • What can players do if they get stuck? Can you discuss ways to work around issues that crop up in life, and what steps to take to start to figure out a solution?

  • What's involved in running a business? What tasks -- such as keeping track of money -- seem to be important to make an amusement park a success?

App details

  • Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Android
  • Pricing structure: Free
  • Release date: March 20, 2020
  • Category: Puzzle Games
  • Size: 810.00 MB
  • Publisher: Atari
  • Version: 1.2.5159
  • Minimum software requirements: Requires iOS 9.0 or later and an Android 4.4 and up.
  • Last updated: April 2, 2020

Our editors recommend

For kids who love puzzles

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