Australian Council on Children and the Media

Maleficent Free Fall - Disney

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Short takes

Maleficent Free Fall is a match three puzzle adventure game based on Disney’s live action film Maleficent. Caution: In-app purchases, advertising

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No gambling content found in the levels played

This review of Maleficent Free Fall was completed by the Australian Council on Children and the Media (ACCM) on 24 June 2014.

About the app

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

Name of app: Maleficent Free Fall
Developed by: Disney
Platform reviewed: Apple App Store, Google Play
Cost: Free
Developer’s suggested age: Google Play Store: Everyone, iTunes Store: 4+
ACCM suggested age: 13+ due to In-app purchases, advertising
Gambling content advice: No gambling content found in the levels played

ACCM review

This review of Maleficent Free Fall contains the following information:

The level to which the game was reviewed

This review focuses on levels: 1-15.

App description

Maleficent Free Fall is a match three puzzle game where players slide gems across the screen in an effort to match three or more of the same kind, and create cascading combinations of gems. The objective is to play through the multiple levels of increasing difficulty, learning new combinations and matching more gems where possible. The skills required to play are spatial/visual, lateral thinking, and problem solving.

Reviewers comments

When the app opens, players are greeted by an IAP Disclaimer stating ‘Additional content can be purchased in Maleficent Free Fall. Purchasing this content costs real money and will be charged to your Google account. You can adjust your device settings to lock the ability to make in-app purchases.’

Players then click on Level 1, ‘Light Up The Board’ – they are given a target of 12,000 points to reach, as well as a companion. Players begin as a young Maleficent, and eventually journey through the map to follow her life story – players unlock other characters such as the raven Diaval, and can develop skills to rearrange the board when they wish. When the play begins, players are presented with a board of different coloured and shaped gems. Within each level, players have a set number of moves to achieve both a scoring goal as well as a performance one. The performance goals can become quite complex, and range from converting dark sections of the gaming board to light by creating a match, up to chaining gaming pieces by creating matches. Matches of more than three can generate bonus items, as well as eliminate entire rows of gems.

When beginning a level, the game instructs players to swipe the gems to match three of the same colour. Doing this earns the player points and increases their score. The game highlights suggested gems that could be swiped, and also has a countdown number of times a player may actually swipe. Once players run out of moves, they are given their score out of the target that was suggested at the beginning, told if they have completed all the objectives allocated (e.g. ‘Light up the entire board!’) and are asked if they would like to ‘Use yellow magic (+5 moves) to continue this level?’ Players are then given the option of purchasing a jar of magic (100 magic for $1.07, 250 magic for $2.14, all the way up to 9000 magic for $53.88). Players need to complete various objectives in order to conquer levels, and must retry them if these are not accomplished. When a player combines gems in a certain way, the gems will free fall and explode themselves. As a result, players will obtain some magic (e.g. +6 magic), and receive the option to progress to the next level. They also are given a total score when they finish a level.

After a player levels up, the board increases in difficulty. When players reach level two, they are told to ‘Match 4 colours in a row to create a gem power-up! Match it again to break all the tiles in it’s path’.

Players may also refill the number of lives they have by purchasing 5 lives for $1.07. However, waiting 20 minutes will provide the player a free life. In total, the game has 75 levels which are spread across 5 chapters, with each representing a stage within Maleficent’s life.

In App purchasing

Yes: Players have the option of purchasing jars of magic within a range of packages: 100 magic for $1.07, 250 magic for $2.14, all the way up to 9000 magic for $53.88. However, as soon as the app is opened, it provides a warning that in-app purchases are present and informs device users that it is possible to lock the ability for children playing with the app to use real money to make in-app purchases.

Gambling

No gambling content found during the review.

Advertising and product placement

It is possible to click on a Disney icon in the top right-hand corner of the screen – doing this takes players to a list of other free apps to download that are Disney-related.

Game playing behaviour which may be of concern to some parents

None found during the review.

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About our colour guide

Content is age appropriate for children this age

Some content may not be appropriate for children this age. Parental guidance recommended

Content is not age appropriate for children this age

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.