Sprinkle: Water splashing fire fighting fun!

App review by
Chris Morris, Common Sense Media
Sprinkle: Water splashing fire fighting fun! App Poster Image
Cute water puzzler where you fight fires with physics.

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A lot or a little?

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

Educational Value

Kids can learn problem-solving skills and critical thinking as they use the physics of water to put out fires. Kids can learn from previous levels what works and how the water will interact with the obstacles, so they can strategize the best way to use the limited resource and the surrounding environment to put out the fires quickly. The backstory for the game provides an interesting perspective on how our actions can impact others. Sprinkle challenges and entertains kids as they exercise problem-solving skills in this physics puzzler.

Ease of Play

Learning the game is easy, but mastering trajectory and aim with the water cannon is difficult. 

Violence & Scariness

If you fail to complete the level, the aliens' houses burn and they're sad -- but they're not hurt. 

Sexy Stuff
Language
Consumerism

A link on the main menu promotes other games by the developer. To move past the first two worlds, you'll need to either achieve a perfect score on every puzzle or pay via an in-app purchase. 

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Sprinkle: Water splashing fire fighting fun! is a puzzle game that puts players in the boots of a firefighter on Titan, a moon orbiting Saturn. Meteors have set off a series of fires on the planet, and you'll have to save the Titans' homes by successfully aiming a water cannon with a limited supply of water. The game is made in a cartoon style but features some challenging puzzles that might be too difficult for young players to figure out. 

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What's it about?

Kids put out fires on Titan, one of Saturn's moons, by adjusting a crane holding a hose to direct the water through obstacles to extinguish the flames. The game progresses from simply pointing the water at a fire to extinguish it to increasingly more difficult scenarios. The water supply is limited, too, adding another challenge. The less water used to put out the fire, the greater the score -- making resource management is an essential lesson to learn in this app.

Is it any good?

What makes SPRINKLE: WATER SPLASHING FIRE FIGHTING FUN! so enjoyable isn't its aim-your-water-cannon-just-right puzzles (though those are certainly fun), it's the water. It pools, it splashes, and it drains slowly, giving it a heightened sense of reality. It's odd praise, admittedly, but in a game that revolves so heavily around water, it's gratifying to know that the developers have focused so closely on the star of the show.

Having to buy your way into the third level/world is annoying, though, and makes the game feel rushed. (Technically, you can unlock it for free, but that requires a perfect performance on every prior level -- and given the level of difficulty with the puzzles, most won't be able to do that.) It's a notable gaffe, but otherwise this is a title that physics-based puzzle fans will love.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Allow kids to see water physics in action by using recycled plastic bottles and other objects to create a water wall on the backyard fence or on the shower wall.

  • Discuss the backstory with your kids, noting how the tourists' seemingly innocent actions wreaked havoc on this tiny moon. Talk about how things we do can have significant impact.

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