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An engaging introduction to coding for young children. Players solve puzzles using clearly explained coding commands that progress in difficulty. Parent caution: contains an easily accessible link to further related internet sites that offer the choice to share via social media.
This review of Lightbot: Code Hour was completed by the Australian Council on Children and the Media (ACCM) on 6 June 2019.
This section contains details about the app provided by an ACCM Reviewer.
|Name of app:||Lightbot: Code Hour|
|Developed by:||SpriteBox LLC|
|Platform reviewed:||Apple App Store|
|Developer's suggested age:||4+|
|ACCM suggested age:||Parental Guidance recommended up to age 13 due to easy access to internet and social media.|
|Gambling content advice:||No gambling content found in the levels played|
This review of Lightbot: Code Hour contains the following information:
All levels were played by the reviewer and all elements of the game were explored.
Lightbot: Code Hour is an educational game in which the player learns commands/codes in order to direct the actions of an animated robot avatar with the aim to solve a puzzle. There is a choice of a blue or pink robot. The commands direct the robot to walk, jump, or light a square up. Each puzzle requires the player to light up a number of marked squares using a limited number of commands to direct the robot. With increasingly complex combinations of codes and limited space to express the commands, the player learns to be economical with their puzzle solution through applying coding shortcuts and loops. All new coding content is simply explained in very achievable steps. The final puzzles in level 2 and 3 are more challenging. The game provides four individual save spots so that up to four players can play from the start without interference or assistance from the others’ game play.
Lightbot: Code Hour’s measured pace for introducing new information means it is a very accessible game, though a co-player may be needed to assist children (up to eight years) to comprehend what is required to complete a puzzle. The more complex commands, including for example; grouping commands and looping, introduce concepts that are both applicable to coding and general mathematics. The current reviewer found the final puzzle quite challenging - but satisfying to complete.
The Developers’ notes clearly state there are no in-app purchases in the game and the reviewer found this to be so, but there are links that take the user out of the game and to sites that require personal information (see Online Information). There were no parental blocks or codes protecting players from accessing the internet. Parents should note that this game is able to be played entirely without access to the internet, so by disabling the internet access on your device, parents can eliminate this issue.
There is no In-App purchasing in this game.
It is important to note that from the menu page it is easy to scroll beyond the game levels to two icons that will take the player out of the game and open pages on the internet. One of these icons leads to the code.org website and offers players a certificate of completion that requires the player’s name. This certificate can be shared via Facebook and Twitter and can be printed. Below the certificate on the link page, advertisements for further educational material relating to computer science education were present, where options to ‘sign in’ or ‘create an account’ were made available. A child could select the sign in via Facebook/Google/Microsoft link - however, there may be little incentive to keep searching for younger players.
At the time of review, the reviewer found no simulated gambling content. If you discover simulated gambling content in this app, please contact us with the details so we can update our review.
There is no advertising or product placement in this game.
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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