Storybook Workshop

 
(i)

 

Record your own fairytale readings in fun Wii game.

What parents need to know

Positive messages

The whole purpose of this game is to make reading fairytales fun.

Positive role models

Aside from the little boy who makes his magical staff hit an evil innkeeper to make her return his stolen items, most of the other stories show admirable characters doing charitable things.

Ease of play

The navigation system is unduly burdensome, making you navigate through numerous menus when selecting a fairytale to read. However, you eventually get used to it.

Violence & scariness

In the fairytale "Boy Who Went to the North Wind," a boy makes a magical staff hit an evil innkeeper on her behind to make her return stolen goods. This tale can be skipped.

Language
Not applicable
Consumerism
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Storybook Workshop turns reading out loud into a game. It comes with a microphone that plugs into the Wii and is most fun when families play it together while all getting into the act of reading books out loud. The cool thing about this game is that it can automatically change your reading voice into the voice of the character by using voice altering software. The "Boy Who Went to the North Wind" fairytale involves a magical staff which is used to hit an evil innkeeper on her behind to make her return stolen goods. You can opt to skip this story.

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What's it about?

STORYBOOK WORKSHOP brings 16 classic and new fairytales to the Wii for an interactive reading experience. You can opt to have the tales read out loud by a professional storyteller, read them to your self while watching the animations play on the screen, or read them aloud and record your readings so that you can play them back later. When reading and recording, you can opt to turn on the Magic Voice feature which alters your reading voice to make it sound like the character who is speaking. You can also bring your favorite Mii into a story where it will appear as a character. In addition to the fairytales, there are also sing-along-songs to record, paintings to create using only your voice, and other learning activities.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

Storybook Workshop makes reading out loud a hoot. It is enchanting for kids to hear their high voices change into a deep one or even one of a robot. This is a fun game for families with non-reading children because they can watch and listen as their parents or older siblings record a story and then join in on saying key phrases. It is fun for children who can read because the voice altering software is interesting to experiment with. This game also allows a visiting grandparent or traveling parent to record a story that can be enjoyed later by a child.

While Storybook Workshop does a great job of making reading fun, its navigation is a little burdensome with multiple menu screens popping up before you can get to read a fairytale. Also, when using the microphone, there is a delay in hearing what you read out loud, which can be disconcerting. We would have welcomed the ability to turn off the background music, because it can, at times, be too much of a distraction. Fortunately, you can turn it down. Please note that these complaints are only minor and that they did not take away much from the overall enjoyment of the game.

Families can talk about...

  • When recording the fairy tales, did you like using the Magic Voice changer, or did you prefer creating your own character voices?

  • Which fairytale was your favorite?

  • Did you explore what it was like to bring your favorite Mii into a story?

Game details

Platforms:Nintendo Wii
Price:$39.99
Available online?Not available online
Developer:Konami
Release date:December 1, 2009
Genre:Educational
ESRB rating:E for Mild Cartoon Violence (Nintendo Wii)

This review of Storybook Workshop was written by

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Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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