A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this game.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this game is based on the Bratz brand of toys for kids and that it's a direct tie-in with the 2007 DVD movie Bratz Super Babyz. Note, too, that the baby Bratz -- very young girls who toddle around in sleepers and have glamorous hair, makeup, and earrings --are a bit creepy, and send a misleading message to younger players about how they should look. While the Bratz characters have a reputation for being obsessed with fashion and consumerism, the primary objectives in this game are refreshingly altruistic in nature: players run errands for neighbors, find lost animals, and prevent other kids from being bullied. Unfortunately, the difficulty of tasks in the game is wildly inconsistent. Players should have at least a second- or third-grade reading level to be able to read and comprehend the game's text dialog, which contains vital mission instructions.
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What's it about?
Based on the 2007 film of the same name, BRATZ SUPER BABYZ stars four toddler girls who come into possession of various super powers, including the ability to fly. Players control each of the Bratz in turn, guiding them to complete four separate missions in each of six chapters. Most of the action is set in free-to-roam 3-D settings, including their grandmother's neighborhood and a carnival in the Adventure Universe. But players are occasionally pulled out of the area they're currently exploring to play a variety of short mini-games.
Is it any good?
With their puffy, glossy lips and oversized celebrity hair, the dolled-up baby dolls that headline this game are somewhat disturbing and provide young girls with inappropriate ideas about how they may want to make themselves look. That said, their behavior is actually quite commendable. Most missions see them helping animals and people, like one in which the player must find a carrot to feed a lost bunny, and another that has players throwing rubber ducks at a bully to get him to leave another kid alone.
Unfortunately, the game suffers from inconsistent levels of difficulty. Some missions involve little more than running a quick errand (in essence, moving a Bratz character from point A to point B) while others, such as a dungeon-like maze filled with traps and secret bridge switches, require advanced problem-solving skills. Worsening matters, the game is buggy. The camera sometimes swings through walls and into buildings and objective markers occasionally fail to appear on the map. We even encountered one instance in which a required item simply disappeared, forcing us to quit the game and restart the mission.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about helping others. You can discuss the importance of being ready to lend a hand when people need your help (but that you shouldn't help strangers unless your parents are with you and give their permission). The game may also spur a discussion about age appropriateness concerning makeup, accessories, and glamorous hairdos.
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