Australian Council on Children and the Media

4 Pics 1 Song - Game Circus LLC

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Short takes

A quiz-based music game involving images that offer clues to song titles. Caution: In app purchases, advertising and some content that may concern parents.

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No gambling content found in the levels played

This review of 4 Pics 1 Song was completed by the Australian Council on Children and the Media (ACCM) on 21 October 2014.

About the app

This section contains details about the app provided by an ACCM Reviewer.

Name of app: 4 Pics 1 Song
Developed by: Game Circus LLC
Platform reviewed: Apple App Store, Google Play
Cost: Free
Developer’s suggested age: Google Play Store: Medium, iTunes Store: 12+.
ACCM suggested age: 16+ In app purchases, advertising and some content that may concern parents.
Gambling content advice: No gambling content found in the levels played

ACCM review

This review of 4 Pics 1 Song contains the following information:

The level to which the game was reviewed

This review focuses on levels: 1-10

App description

This is a quiz-based music game where players are offered a range of picture clues, and are asked to guess a song title. The objective of this game is to identify as many song titles as possible. This game requires the skills of general knowledge, pop culture and music, as well as basic motor skills to input the titles.

Reviewers comments

Upon opening the app, players are taken to a screen that displays four pictures in a cube. There are small squares where players must input letters from a panel – this panel contains a reduced keyboard, with some letters needed for the correct song title, and others to mislead and confuse individuals. Incorrect tries of inputting the song title are met with a popup screen stating to players ‘Try Again’. Once the correct title is inputted, a screen appears stating ‘You Guessed The Song!’, offering the title and artist in full and indicating the percentage of a level that the player has completed. At a random point during gameplay, a popup appears asking players to rate the app. Players have the options of ‘Yes, rate it!’, ‘Remind me later’, or ‘Don't ask again’.

The game also offers players hints to assist them in establishing the song titles. There are two options in regards to this: players may remove all incorrect letters, or place one letter in the correct place. Players begin with 2 free hints of either variety, but as players progress through the levels, these cost coins. Players are able to earn coins by watching videos or installing other apps, or purchase them in packages from the in-game shop.

The game also features an option to choose a set list of songs from a selection of eighteen. These include set lists such as ‘Now Showing Broadway’, ‘Cartoon Classics’, ‘Music for Foodies’, ‘Colourful Tunes’. Specific amounts of coins are needed to unlock different set lists. There is a home button in the top left-hand corner of the screen that contains images of vinyl records.  These indicate how much of a level has been completed, and which level the player is currently on. In order to unlock later levels, players must use coins or alternatively watch a video advertisement.

Players also have the option to connect via Facebook and Twitter. During gameplay, a popup appears stating ‘Hey, you can always ask a friend on Facebook for help!’. This screen does not require player action to remove, however, as it disappears after a few seconds.

While it appears that the majority of the 4 picture combinations do not contain material that would be considered inappropriate for children, various songs do. Instances of such material include:

  • suggestions of mild violence: for the song ‘Killer Queen’, one of the four images contains a woman looking aggressive whilst holding a knife. The song ‘Shots’ contains images of both a firing gun, as well as a syringe,
  • substance use: for the song ‘Drunk in Love’, several of the images contain references of the consumption of alcohol with people drinking glasses of wine), etc. There are also song titles that are potentially inappropriate for children, including titles such as ‘Talk Dirty’, ‘Stupid Girl’, and ‘I Kissed a Girl’ – however, these do not have any inappropriate images associated with them.

In App purchasing

Yes: Players can purchase packages of coins ranging in price from $0.99 to $9.95. The packages include purchasing 250 coins for $0.99, 600 coins for $1.94, 2000 coins for $4.95, or 5000 coins for $9.95 The game also allows players the option to remove ads entirely from the game by making a purchase of $2.13 - this purchase does not garner players any particular reward, other than the removal of ads.

Online information

Players are able to connect via Facebook and Twitter, in order to ask friends for help in their efforts to determine what song titles are.

Gambling

No gambling content found during the review.

Advertising and product placement

There is a panel along the bottom of the central home screen that contains advertisements for external apps. The advertisements may be removed from the game itself by making an in-app purchase of $2.13.

Game playing behaviour which may be of concern to some parents

No game playing behaviour which may be of concern to parents.

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Gambling content advice

Simulated casino style gambling. Not suitable for minors

Contains some elements of gambling. Some content is not recommended for minors. Parental guidance recommended

No gambling content found in the levels played

About games and gambling

Most games contain elements of risk, chance and knowledge, that is why they are fun to play. There is growing concern about the impacts of simulated gambling games on the health and wellbeing of children. That's why we are identifying games that contain gambling elements on our site.

The State Government of South Australia's web site http://nogame.com.au/ contains information about these concerns.