What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Crashmo is a puzzle game only available for download through the 3DS eShop store for Nintendo 3DS. It presents players with scores of challenging three-dimensional block puzzles that will put their reasoning skills to the test. It's completely free of iffy content. The only thing parents may need to keep an eye on are the puzzles that players can create and swap with one another. Kids can only share with their friends, so there's no worry of inappropriate online interactions, but mischievous players could decide to turn their blocky creations into suggestive art.
What kids can learn
Thinking & Reasoning
- solving puzzles
- making new creations
- digital creation
Engagement, Approach, Support
The three-dimensional conundrums are inviting, even when their often tricky solutions don't immediately present themselves. Puzzle-loving kids will be enchanted.
Kids will learn through reasoning, deduction, and experimentation. And by crafting their own puzzles, they'll put their understanding of the game's mechanics to an even greater test.
A lengthy series of tutorials plus additional training levels explain how the game works. Also, the studio mode allows players to create and share their own puzzles.
What's it about?
A sequel to Pushmo -- one of the best downloadable games available for Nintendo 3DS -- CRASHMO returns players to a park filled with blocky towers in need of manipulation. This time out our hero -- a pudgy red cat named Mallo dressed in sumo wrestling garb -- has accidentally scared away a bunch of birds with one of his big stomps. The feathery creatures have nested atop jumbles of blocks, and the only way to get them down is to rearrange these piles so that Mallo can ascend to their peaks. Kids push, pull, and slide individual pieces paying careful attention to where those above will fall in hopes of creating serpentine paths that lead up around, and through the fallen blocks. Outside Mallo's quest, players can explore a studio mode that allows them to create their own puzzles, then share them with other players via automatically generated QR codes.
Is it any good?
Puzzle fans will have a blast with this cleverly conceived sequel. The puzzles feel much the same as those found in Pushmo, save a few important changes. The most important is that the puzzle arena is now a little bigger and players can move the camera all the way around the tower. That means players have to think about the tower in three dimensions, exploring paths that lead up not just its front but also its sides and back. It makes things a bit trickier, but you can always just skip ahead and move on to the next should you run into something you just can't crack.
Factor in the return of the studio mode -- which can be used not only to create new puzzles to share with friends but also to make simple, block-based art -- and you have a wonderful and affordable little eShop game that offers a good deal more entertainment than many full-priced boxed games in stores.
Families can talk about...
Families can talk about puzzles. What sorts of puzzles do you solve outside of games? How do you use logic to figure out solutions to the problems you face every day? Could these problems be translated into a game?
Families can also discuss being creative and making things. When you create something it's often meant simply to be viewed and admired. Puzzles and games, on the other hand, are things that other people end up interacting with. How does that change your approach to creation?