A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this game.
Kids can learn about math and explore the world in this entertaining adventure game, which features number problems suitable for middle-school students. Players get to practice their skills recognizing numerical patterns, calculating weight, and carrying out basic mathematical operations ranging from addition and subtraction to multiplication and division. In addition to playing mini-games that use middle school math, kids also visit locations ranging from the United States to India and absorb a bit about local cultures and landmarks. Like all Carmen Sandiego products, this game delivers on being educational -- and fun.
This game makes math fun by challenging kids with problems that fit within the context of the adventure. It shows kids how math can be useful in real life situations.
Positive Role Models
Kids listen to and read dialogue from several helpful game characters, including ACME agents, subject matter experts, and civilians. The player's character, a male or female detective, focuses on chasing after his or her suspect and ensuring justice is served. Many different ethnicities are represented in the game.
Ease of Play
All of the puzzles are suitable for the game's intended audience of middle-elementary school kids. Instructions are clear, and hints offer guidance rather than just giving answers away. The investigation, meanwhile, is linear and without any significant obstacles that could lead to kids getting stuck.
Products & Purchases
This game is a part of an educational media franchise that includes books, games, television series, and films.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Carmen Sandiego Adventures in Math: The Great Gateway Grab is a short but fun educational game that will help kids practice math skills they're likely studying in school. Players will learn the basics about different kinds of angles, work on a couple of shape symmetry puzzles, and organize mixed decimals and fractions. They'll also learn a few essential facts about the landmarks and cultures of India, Brazil, and Greece, and eventually use logic to determine the identity of the game's villain. There is no offensive or contentious content.
Is It Any Good?
The Great Gateway Grab is a fine learning game for kids. Its math problems are well balanced, suitable for its target age group (middle-elementary school kids), and make sense within the context of the investigation. Plus, its story has some interesting twists and turns, not least of which is a dilemma concerning the containment of a solvent that can dissolve any container. (We'd still like to know whether the novel solution used in the game has any basis in reality!)
You get what you pay for -- the production values are decidedly low, and it's no longer than an after-school special -- but the educational value is good and the mystery is compelling. The math problems are fun, and kids can replay them over and over again.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.