Space Physics

App review by
Erin Bell, Common Sense Media
Space Physics App Poster Image
Clever physics game can be tricky on small screens.

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A lot or a little?

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

Educational Value

Kids can learn how slope, momentum, and gravity interact with solids, levers, gears, and wheels. Kids come up with limitless solutions to a simple challenge: make the ball touch the star. Each puzzle, or rather scenario, presents kids with a set of opportunities and limitations, and through repeated attempts, kids get better at moving the ball toward the goal. Drawing wheels can be tough -- they often turn out as circles if not precise enough. Space Physics is a playful, open-ended way to learn about physics and simple machines.

Ease of Play

Players draw shapes and lines on the screen to move a marble to the goal. By drawing circles in specific areas, players can create gears and wheels and connect them with straight lines to make more complex structures. Drawing can be tricky and imprecise on smaller touchscreens, but kids can easily erase malformed shapes by tapping them.

Violence & Scariness
Sexy Stuff
Language
Consumerism

A button links to more games from the developer that are available to purchase.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Space Physics is a construction game with Tron-like graphics and realistic physics. In addition to buying the app, players must also install and launch the free "Pack for Space Physics" download from the Android Market to get the actual levels and sounds.

User Reviews

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What's it about?

Each puzzle has its own unique features. A simple one requires the user to draw a line from a ball to a star, and then tap to the side of the ball to start it rolling. A more complex puzzle has a rotating gear attached to an "x"; the ball falls into the "x," gets rotated, and must be guided to the star directly under the "x." The challenge is that the whole thing is suspended in moon-like gravity with no solids to guide the ball (psst: stuff does stick to the "x").

Is it any good?

In SPACE PHYSICS, players guide a ball to its destination by drawing shapes and lines to create bridges, levers, vehicles, and other simple structures. Objects behave with realistic physics, and the game's 80 levels present some very challenging and clever puzzles to solve. The frustration comes in when drawn shapes come out malformed because the touchscreen is too small and imprecise -- something that happened frequently on the device the game was tested on. A larger screen might solve such issues.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Help your kids build a simple wheeled vehicle with items you find in your home. For example, use straws for axles and lifesavers for wheels.

  • Encourage your kids to test momentum on different slopes, like slides or wooden ramps.

App details

  • Devices: Android, Kindle Fire
  • Subjects: Science: engineering, gravity, momentum, motion, physics
    Math: geometry, shapes
  • Skills: Thinking & Reasoning: analyzing evidence, applying information, logic, part-whole relationships, prediction, thinking critically
  • Price: $1.99
  • Pricing structure: Paid
  • Release date: February 9, 2011
  • Category: Puzzle Games
  • Size: 1.70 MB
  • Publisher: Camel Games
  • Version: 1.9.0
  • Minimum software requirements: Android 1.6 and up

For kids who love puzzles and Android apps

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