A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this app.
Ease of Play
Written help is provided throughout the game, and it's fairly easy to figure out.
Swear words aren't options within puzzles, but words like fart can be entered.
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Products & Purchases
Packages of hints to help solve the app's word puzzles are sold, but the puzzles are free to play. Kids will see ads, unless they pay to remove them, but they aren't overwhelming.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Wordjamacallit is a word puzzle game for iOS and Android devices. The gameplay has a fairly simple premise, and gamers will see detailed instructions on how to play, including descriptions for each type of word they need to enter. After they start playing, they'll see a message letting them know they can play for free and see ads or pay $3.99 to remove them, although the ads are fairly subtle. They can also pay $1.99 for a package of 20 hints to use when trying to solve the word puzzles -- or $9.99 or $19.99 for larger amounts. Generally, the word choices in games are benign, although kids may occasionally find some slightly dubious options can be entered, such as shat.
Is It Any Good?
The potential words you can use in this game aren't too complex -- younger kids should be able to recognize and spell some in each level. Kids can't just enter random guesses in Wordjamacallit. They have to follow directions listed on cards to read the instructions, such as "Swipe a word containing the letter 'T' to collect this card," which makes figuring out what to do next easy. Once they've satisfied all the card requests, they'll have finished the level.
The game involves a couple of unclear elements -- one card, for instance, appears periodically asking you to find a hidden word using clues you'll get from completing the other cards. Doing that doesn't always make a specific answer obvious, though -- particularly because you can enter one word that applies to multiple cards to complete more than one card at a time. If you do, the cards -- and potential clues -- disappear quickly. Kids may find they've accidentally guessed the hidden word in the process and that card is gone, too. Older kids may feel the word guesses are a little easy, since many, if not most, involve just three to five letters, and it's not uncommon to see some of the same options pop up in the next level. But there are some nuances in the gameplay. For example, in addition to entering a word that will satisfy two or more cards at once, words that include all the available letters also provide bonus points. While the game's workplace theme is a creative idea, the graphics could be more compelling -- kids can see grapes accumulate and a character descend into a pipe as the next level starts, but there aren't many other visual bells and whistles. But despite its simplicity, the game can be surprisingly addictive. Even though kids are essentially doing the same thing -- swiping on the screen to select letters and enter words -- repeatedly throughout the game, the different tasks they need to consider for each word selection help Wordjamacallit's subsequent levels continue to feel fresh.
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