A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this game.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Active Life Magical Carnival is a collection of fantasy-themed mini-games that are intended to keep kids up and active while playing. The game uses both the standard Wii remotes and a special floor mat that track their foot movements. One or two mini-games feature mild, very unrealistic cartoon violence. The games are set in themed worlds including circus, pirates, and wizards.
What's it about?
ACTIVE LIFE MAGICAL CARNIVAL invites families to step into a fantasy theme park full of motion-controlled mini-games. You will tame lions and walk tightropes under a circus big top; you'll ride broomsticks and chase ghosts in a wizard's castle; you'll climb masts and duel buccaneers on a pirate ship; and more. Games are played with both the Wii remote and the Active Life floor pad.
Is it any good?
Active Life Magical Carnival, like the rest of the Active Life series, makes excellent use of its distinct, two-person floor pad. Having to step, jump, run, and hop throughout a game definitely increases the overall physicality of it. And most of the time, the actions fit well with the game's designated activity (pedaling, lunging, etc.). There are times, mostly when steering vehicles (including broomsticks), when leaning would have felt more natural, as opposed to stepping. But if the game used, say, the Wii balance board instead, then you wouldn't be able to jump on it. So nothing is perfect, but the developers here have done a great job with the hardware they chose to use. Plus, it's fun to see the kind of active gaming moves usually reserved for sports titles applied to a fantasy-adventure setting.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about active gaming. Is it a legitimate way to stay fit? In what ways can you supplement active gaming in order to lead a more physically fit lifestyle?
How does it feel to play competitively with friends or family members? Are you able to be a good sport? Or does it sometimes cause arguments or resentments?
- Platforms: Nintendo Wii
- Subjects: Hobbies: sports
- Skills: Health & Fitness: body awareness, gross motor skills, movement
Thinking & Reasoning: memorization
- Price: $29.99–$49.99
- Available online? Not available online
- Developer: Namco Bandai
- Release date: November 1, 2011
- Genre: Exergaming
- Topics: Magic and fantasy
- ESRB rating: E for Cartoon Violence
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Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.