Ziggy's Present - Picture Puzzles is a different kind of storybook app engaging readers in a hidden picture adventure. From developer RumdeeDum, this iPhone/iPad app follows Ziggy the dog as he tries to determine whose present he has found. Help each character in this interactive story find the objects in their rooms.
This app opens to the story of Ziggy, a little dog who has found a present. He goes from person to person in the castle trying to determine who the present belongs to. The first page is read aloud, but the subsequent pages are not. Each page takes Ziggy to a different person. The King and Queen, and all of the Princesses and Prince don't know who the present belongs to. But they need help finding items in their rooms. The reader must find eight missing items in each scene. A nice twist is that on different readings, the player must find different items. Each page is a different scene, with eight scenes total.
The menu for this game is fairly extensive. Players are given the option of hearing and reading the story in several languages: English, French, German, or Dutch. The player also has the option of turning the music on and off. Additionally, the player can choose to play timed or untimed. Earn stars for beating the clock if you play timed. Though there is no penalty if you don't find the objects in the allotted time. Players also can choose to play with the lights on or off. With the lights on, the player is shown all eight objects they need to find and shown the whole scene. With the lights off, the player navigates a circle of light in flashlight style, looking for one object at a time. The player can access the menu from any page, so the options are fully customizable at any time.
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This app is a cute interactive puzzle game. Kids ages 3-8 will enjoy finding the objects in each scene. While the entire story isn't read aloud, making the story part lost on young readers, they will still easily understand what to do in each scene. It's a nice feature that on additional readings, kids get a different set of pictures to find. This makes the app fun to return to. There is also a nice variety of pictures to find - some are easy to find and a few are just a little more difficult. This makes the app good for the younger and older ends of the age range. I also liked that the app had both time and untimed options. Playing with the flashlight or playing with a fully lit scene was also a neat aspect. Playing with the flashlight made the game seem completely different and new.
Overall, this app is a cute interactive puzzle game. The story aspect may be lost on young readers as the majority of the story isn't read aloud, but the puzzles will be enjoyed by kids in the 3-8 year old bracket. With both the lights on and lights off option, players get twice as many fun things to search for. If you are looking for a fun hidden puzzle type game, this app is a good place to start.
Ziggy's Present - Picture Puzzles is available for download via the iTunes App Store: Universal App iPad/iPhone/iPod
This app was reviewed by Sarah Emerling, a mom, a special education teacher, and a technology coach. She is a self proclaimed nerd with a passion for incorporating technology into education and you read her findings at The iLesson Lady .
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Disclosure: This review was move up the waiting list priority-services. All opinions expressed are purely that of the author.