What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that this game is based on Hasbro's Littlest Pet Shop toy line and animated TV show, and is part of a series of Littlest Pet Shop Nintendo DS games. The game features two types of online multiplayer gameplay: in Party Hall, players can plan a party by setting the date and choosing up to six minigames to be played, then allowing up to three friends who also have copies of the game to "attend the party" by receiving invites at the appropriate time. Any of the minigames can also be played with friends over a wireless connection. There is no chat.
What's it about?
LITTLEST PET SHOP - SPRING is the latest in a series of Nintendo DS pet sim games based on Hasbro's Littlest Pet Shop toy franchise and animated television show. Like all games in the series, the goal is to adopt pets and bring them the Pet Plaza -- one of four worlds that you'll end up unlocking -- to lavish them with love, attention, food, and adorable accessories like caps, sunglasses, and dresses.
In addition to the new Spring theme, this latest game boasts six exclusive new pets: a lop-eared bunny, a fox, a Jack Russell terrier, a dwarf bunny, a porcupine, and a new kitty, as well as four new mini-games including Snack Sort, where players use the stylus to guide blueberries and strawberries into the correct bowls. By playing minigames, players earn \"Kibble,\" the game's currency, which can be used to adopt more pets, purchase new accessories and toys, and buy new playsets which unlock more minigames.
Is it any good?
Littlest Pet Shop - Spring does everything right in terms of appealing to its target audience. The pets - which include a variety of kitties, puppies, bunnies, horses, and other animals – are all super-cute, and the game boasts 120 accessories, 34 playsets, two toys, and 54 goals to complete. The game's not as polished, nor are the animals as expressive and interactive as those found in Nintendogs (still, after several years, the golden standard of pet sim games on the Nintendo DS).
But the addition of entertaining minigames that can be played with friends via the Nintendo DS's WiFi connection, helps to prolong the game's appeal after all of the pets and accessories have been collected. Plus, each of the minigames offers three levels of difficulty to accommodate players of various skill levels and reflexes. Players can switch between any of the pets they've adopted, and can zoom in to give them some one-on-one attention, such as petting and feeding.
Families can talk about...
Families can talk about the differences between adopting a virtual pet and caring for one in real life. What real-life pet responsibilities does the game gloss over, such as cleaning the litter box, taking the animal to the vet, or dealing with the aftermath of a chewed up shoe?