Pinocchio3D

Pinocchio3D

Anything but wooden

Combining the text of author Carlo Collodi’s classic children’s book with an audio component and ‘3D’ scenes, Italian publisher Avagliano Editore’s illustrated digital storybook aims to bring the story to life via interactive touchscreen content. Although it’s not quite as innovative as it could be, Pinocchio3D provides a competent enough take on the popular tale of the wooden boy.

The title is a little misleading, however; the interactive 3D illustrations simply employ a visual trick in which layered images shift – much like a lenticular – as you tilt your iPad in various directions. It’s a novelty, but the overall effect is lacking as far as the 3D claims go. The app also defaults to the Italian language settings, although switching it to English is fairly straightforward, while anyone after a contemporary interpretation of Collodi’s original story will be disappointed; the original, often dark tale is all that’s on offer here, both in the original Italian and a generally solid English translation.

Gripes aside, though, the English spoken-word audio recording is relatively engaging, and the new illustrations – accompanied by snippets of music and sound effects – provide a fun distraction from the 36 chapters of unrelenting text. A swipe of a finger might result in a rudimentary animation or physics effect amounting to the most basic of motion comics, at just 13 full-page scenes (32 in total), we’d have liked to see more, though.

Rated 3 out of 5

A diverting, if gimmicky, introduction to the world’s most iconic wooden boy.

Screenshots


  • TITLE= DragonBox – The Coolest Algebra App Ever for Kids (Seriously!);RATING=5;If you have a child who loves playing mobile games, let me introduce you to Dragonbox. Dragonbox is a revolutionary new game that will help your child to learn algebra while progressing at their own pace. I´ve seen some great iPad apps before, mainly on this website, but this cool game deserves a special post. The people behind Dragonbox have created a game that enables children experience algebra concepts as a real game that is actually brilliant fun! After only one hour of playing, they´ll be able to solve mathematical equations and have fun doing it too – you could say a “win-win” situation. Move the picture boxes around the screen using the game rules (the rules of algebra) and try to isolate the dragon box. The DragonBox game has been tested in schools in Norway, where the results showed significant increased understanding of basic mathematics and the improved ability to solve complex equations. My own 11 and 14 year olds enjoyed competing to complete the DragonBox+ version (with 100 extra levels), my daughter even replaying levels to get to the full 3 reward stars available to collect in each level. I also caught my wife moving the colourful boxes around the screen and muttering how addictive it was. I´ve read that children as young as 5 years old have learned the ideas behind solving algebraic equations using this very clever game. It really is a great game for parents to play along with their kids – and freshen up their own maths skills. Starting with removing starbursts, and moving on to adding negative dragons to both sides, DragonBox introduces deviding and multiplying terms in the same step-by-step, easy to understand way. The game is great for young kids who have never heard of algebra as well as older kids who don´t completely understand the usual ´we move this one over here and devide this one´ type explanations. Read the reviews on iTunes and Google Play to see how much kids (plus parents and teachers) are loving this game. DragonBox+ contains an additional 100 standard equations featuring good old fashioned letters, to help your child become a master of algebra, even finding the most difficult looking equations easy to solve. DragonBox and DragonBox+ are universal apps. Buy once and play on your iPad (like my kids) or on your iPhone (like me and my wife). The games are reasonably priced – DragonBox costs £1.99 and DragonBox+ that comes with an extra 100 games costs £3.99. DragonBox has definitely got me smiling this summer – http://www.dragonboxapp.com