App Review: 'Olivia the Great'

Filed under: Apps

Olivia the Great app for iPad

"Oliva the Great" is available on iPad. Credit: Marcio Jose Sanchez, AP

Rated ON for Ages 5 and Up

What Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that "Olivia the Great" is a game that is part hidden object and part memory enhancement. The game has players hunt down everyday objects in Olivia's room. Once they have accomplished this, they're shown finger swipes that allow Olivia to perform various "magic tricks" for her friends. The further along in the game children get, the more complicated the swipes become -- and the later ones are likely too advanced for young players. There are some stability issues as well, as the app will sometimes crash without warning. It will remember which tricks you have learned, but any audience Olivia has gathered will have dispersed when you return.

The good stuff

  • Ease of play: Gameplay consists of finding objects in a cluttered room and remembering which finger swipes result in which magic tricks. Finding the objects isn't hard, but as the number of spells increases, kids might have trouble remembering which swipes do which tricks.
  • Educational value: Children can use the app to improve their memory skills and object identification abilities.

What to watch out for

  • Violence: Not an issue.
  • Sex: Not an issue.
  • Language: Not an issue.
  • Consumerism: The app is educational, but ties in with the Olivia show, a successful children's program that airs on Nick Jr.
  • Drinking, drugs, & smoking: Not an issue.

Is It Any Good?

Somas Games has already made an Olivia game that targets very young children with Olivia, so it's nice to see them aim a little bit older with "Olivia the Great." the game won't be too challenging to anyone over the age of 8, but younger kids will enjoy the search for hidden objects and the tricks Olivia performs when the mimic-the-finger-swipes shown on screen. The early puzzles are easy even for younger kids, but later puzzles tend to be a bit more complicated, which might frustrate some children. However, the varied difficulty makes the game accessible to a wider age range of players.

App Details

Phones: iPad, Category: Family Games
Price: $0.99, Version: 1.0, Size: 96.8 MB
Release Date: 2/17/2011, Publisher: Soma Creates
Minimum software requirements: iOS 3.2 or later

This review was written by Chris Morris.

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AdviceMama Says:
Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.