Wolverine and the X-Men (Leapster)
What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Wolverine and the X-Men integrates educational math, geography, and reading activities into a superhero adventure story that also features robot battles with no apparent educational value. Images of men with guns, explosions, and the hero's slashing claws are repeated throughout the story. Also, be aware that Wolverine's female teammate, Emma Frost, wears a very tight, midriff revealing costume.
What's it about?
In the WOLVERINE AND THE X-MEN Leapster game, the evil Mutant Response Division (MRD) has kidnapped innocent mutants all over the world, including most of the X-Men. Wolverine must travel around the globe, rescuing his teammates and fighting off the MRD's laser-blasting sentinel robots. He follows patterns during motorcycle chases, slashes his way through doors in specified geometric shapes, and uses shape codes to get into locked rooms. His teammate Emma Frost solves spelling problems on her computer and deciphers map coordinates to help him locate the mutants.
Is it any good?
The integration of the educational content in Wolverine and the X-Men works very well in some areas (using the map to locate countries, using geometry to break codes and slash through metal doors) and less in others (using letter sounds to locate kidnapped allies). Most notable here, though, is the violent imagery. Yes, the game is based on superheroes who, by definition, will get into fights, but the inclusion of flat-out fight scenes with no educational content is surprising. And the presence of guns in the game is actually quite shocking, even if they are never used.
Online interaction: Leapster 2 users can win rewards, like certificates or coloring pages, which can be downloaded from the LeapFrog.com website when the Leapster 2 unit is connected to a PC via USB cable. With an online account at LeapFrog.com, parents can also track their children's progress through this same connection.
Families can talk about...
Families can talk about Wolverine's eagerness to fight. He fights to rescue his friends, but would there be a different way for him to save them? Is fighting always necessary?