by Artgig Apps
It seems fitting that our 130th app review will post on the day of this apps launch. Artgig Apps will add to the App Store, Alien Buddies. An educational app which encourages colors, shapes, letters and numbers as your little one (preschool to kindergarten aged student or child) travels into outer space as they play and learn through a variety of games. Designed to be explored and played on your Apple device from your iTouch, iPhone or iPad, continuous enjoyment can be had. As your imaginary astronaut games for a reason, they will encounter the most adorable aliens and eye popping graphics. These little creatures are far from scary, they couldn’t be more friendly in appearance as they guide your little one on this educational journey.
With an easy to navigate menu and game play, this early learning app will introduce, develop, and reinforce the youngest of fingers. Alien Buddies encourages learners of all styles. Upon entering, users will have the option to play a matching, build multiple size puzzles, connect the dots or design an outer space background with those stickers that you earned along the way. If a user should choose to play a colors, letters, shapes or numbers match, then simply click the orange pod and its waving paper like alien. Here players will be given a variety of age appropriate academic choices. Depending on a users learning need(s) or style, they will be developing such skills as following directions as they either listen or see the necessary skills being taught or reinforced. You may choose from basic colors and shapes, however, when deciding to match with letters and numbers, players will be provided more options for further mastery and comprehension. Learn the difference between upper and lower case letters or master numbers from 1-50. With a “moon” of correct answers, aliens are saved as your young astronaut is verbally reinforced and rewarded with stickers. Worried about making mistakes, don’t be! Artgig Apps allows for multiple clicks without being penalized. Within the matching menu, if users and/or parents are looking for some form of a progress report, a green checkmark will appear at each level of play, audio or visual. Although games do not need to be played in any particular order, users might find it useful to begin with the fundamentals as they play a matching game.
Dot to Dot will reinforce sequential counting as it provides audio feedback and develops ones fine motor skills. After clicking the rocket ship, users will be given what appears to be “empty” images. Through a simple dot to dot game, players will then complete images in one of two modes: please help or I can do it myself. The “please help” mode, highlights in purple the numbers that are to be clicked. As you magically touch the purple number, a new one appears. The object of this game is to sequence numbers from lowest to highest. To continue support of all users, as a player makes a finger to number connection, numbers are announced for reinforcement. Like the matching game, with each correct build, users will earn more stickers. The “I can do it myself mode”, does not provide any color reinforcement. It is assumed that you are aware of number sequencing and can function on your own. Although there are only eight empty images that need to be built, players can rebuild and earn a totally different sticker for their collection with each return visit. A note to the developers – in a future update, might it be possible to offer more puzzles? Or the option to change sequencing directions, from highest to lowest? Or to offer alphabetical order as well. This would be a nice extension to the Matching game(s) level of play. To further extend the matching game option, once stickers are connected, might it be possible to tap that sticker and announce the object name. Another great way to encourage vocabulary development.
As a player uses their imagination in outer space to gain new knowledge, it is now time to let that expand to ones artistic side. With all their hard work came rewards. These rewards have been stored in the Alien Buddies Sticker option of your main menu. Here users are given eight different landscapes and 40+ stickers that can be added to tell an amazing story. Stickers can be manipulated in a variety of ways by rotating, dragging, and scaling them to size. In addition, backgrounds can be saved to your mobile devices Photo Gallery. As Applicable2U experimented with this application, we were encouraged to see an alternative opportunity that the Alien Buddies Stickers might have on a classroom environment. Through this simple sticker building activity, users can re-experience their imagination and share their creativity. If printing of Photo Gallery items is possible, users could tell that story to an adult as it is scribed on paper or your mobile device. Writers workshop just took on a whole new level of writing.
Recently, the buddies were transformed into puzzle pieces. As you explore the Alien Buddies Puzzle mode you will be introduced to eight “Monster Inc.” like characters which are super adorable. Although there are only 8 friends, each can be put back together in three levels of difficulty: 4 pieces, 6 pieces and 8 pieces. Simply click on a piece and drag to it to the correct spot within the puzzle. As you manipulate with your finger, pieces will move and even rotate for the user as you near the correct location. A note to the developers – might it be possible to allow users to rotate the pieces on their own as they build within the more difficult level. This would truly set the challenge expectation even higher as they navigate smaller pieces to a puzzle.
Overall, Applicable2U was impressed with the possibilities that Alien Buddies had to offer. We loved exploring the outer banks of space with these adorable aliens and we can’t wait to share it with our own son. If you would like to learn more about the other apps that Artgig Apps has to offer, please visit their website here. Can’t resist these little guys? Then begin downloading Alien Buddies today to your iTunes Library here.