Wappy Dog

Game review by
Mark Raby, Common Sense Media
Wappy Dog Game Poster Image
Novel game+toy concept makes for unique virtual pet romp.

Parents say

age 5+
Based on 1 review

Kids say

age 10+
Based on 1 review

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this game.

Positive Messages

There is mainly one central message in this game: take good care of those who entrust their care to you. Players are rewarded for ensuring their pet 'Wappy Dog' is played with, fed well, and cared for. At no point is negative behavior ever encouraged or rewarded. This game is about building a bond with a virtual pet and/or toy.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Players become a role model of sorts for their pet dog. The game rewards players for good, responsible behavior.

Ease of Play

This game uses simple point-and-click controls, allowing players to easily search through menus to provide their pet dog with food or toys, or play a mini-game to raise its spirits. When connected to the physical Wappy Dog toy, the controls are just as seamless. The interaction with the toy is presented in a user-friendly and easy-to-control way, making it accessible for any player.

Violence & Scariness
Language
Consumerism

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that the Wappy Dog is both a tech toy and video game. The video game functions similarly to most other virtual pet games -- players can feed, groom, and pet the dog as well as play mini-games with it. What sets this game apart is the physical robotic toy dog that comes with the game. The toy connects wirelessly with the Nintendo DS, allowing communication between the two (for example, the toy dog makes barking sounds, which the game "translates" for players). The robotic toy stores information from the game and changes over time, making it appear as though it becomes more familiar with the player and adjusts its attitude accordingly. The game can also be played without the toy nearby.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Parent of a 7 year old Written bydarylj3 December 26, 2012

forutne telling

Wappy told my 7 year old that his fortune was that he was going to have a bad day. Is there a setting to turn this off or preset positive fortunes?
Teen, 13 years old Written bySnoopylove87 February 4, 2013

Wappy Dog: Pawsome Fun For Your Family!

It is so easy to play, I finished it in two days! Well sorta. I kinda deleted the data. But I learned a lesson by doing that, and it is DON'T FORGET TO FEE... Continue reading

What's it about?

WAPPY DOG consists of two elements - the Nintendo DS game and the physical Wappy Dog toy. The game is presented like a standard pet simulation game, offering players the full scale of pet customization options, giving it a name, playing games with it, etc. The robotic toy that links up with the game works to enhance the experience by giving players a physical object to make their work within the game seem more real. The dog moves and barks in reaction to events that happen within the game, though the interaction does not go far beyond that.

Is it any good?

Wappy Dog provides a great experience just for the sheer novelty of the robotic toy that reacts in real-time to the game. It should be noted that Wappy Dog's interaction with the game are limited. The toy makes sounds and limited movements in response to actions that happen in the game, but these are all pre-defined and not truly customizable by players. It is not a sophisticated robot, but it does not need to be. The point of the toy is to make the hard work and dedication of caring for a virtual pet seem more tangible and real, which this game/toy combo accomplishes. Aspiring pet owners will no doubt find the charm and novelty of this game well worth it.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about how much time should be spent tending to a virtual pet. How much game time is too much?

  • Does the inclusion of a physical toy make you feel more like you're caring for a real pet?

  • What isn't in this game that you need to take care of with a real, live pet dog?

Game details

  • Platforms: Nintendo DS
  • Price: $49.99
  • Available online? Not available online
  • Developer: Activision
  • Release date: November 8, 2011
  • Genre: Simulation
  • ESRB rating: E for No Descriptors

For kids who love animals

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