Australian Council on Children and the Media

Pocket Worlds- Learning Game - Tuxedo Games

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Pocket Worlds- Learning Games in an educational app for children. Caution: in-app purchasing and advertising

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No gambling content found in the levels played

This review of Pocket Worlds- Learning Game was completed by the Australian Council on Children and the Media (ACCM) on 11 May 2016.

About the app

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

Name of app: Pocket Worlds- Learning Game
Developed by: Tuxedo Games
Platform reviewed: Apple App Store, Google Play
Cost: Free
Developer’s suggested age: Google Play Store: General; iTunes Store: 4+
ACCM suggested age: 4+ with supervision; 14+ due to in-app purchasing and advertising.
Gambling content advice: No gambling content found in the levels played

ACCM review

This review of Pocket Worlds- Learning Game contains the following information:

The level to which the game was reviewed

This app was reviewed to completion.

App description

Pocket Worlds: Learning Game is an educational app for children. The objective of the game is to solve a variety of basic puzzles and progress through different ‘worlds’. The central skills involved are shape and pattern recognition, basic comprehension, as well as motor skills to utilise the functions of the app

Reviewers comments

When the app is initially opened, players are shown a series of brightly coloured cartoon-style planets, each of which have different names. There is only one planet unlocked at the beginning of the game, called Party World. The subsequent planets titled School World, Ocean World, and Zoo World involve an in-app fee to unlock ($4.17 for each additional planet). In the bottom left-hand corner of this menu, there is an icon which takes players to drawing/painting canvas. There are no specific goals or requirements within this section – players are merely able to draw and create as they please.

 

When the player selects one of the aforementioned worlds, there are a variety of activities to choose from. Players can match pictures to examples (e.g. placing two images of hats next to one another), and are rewarded for each correct match. A voice states the name of the matched item, and also loudly exclaims “Yay!” – this is accompanied by a musical tone. As tasks are completed, such as placing like-coloured objects into respective containers, the app further rewards players with a yellow star in the corner of the screen.

 

Players are tasked with activities such as shape recognition, counting skills, and basic pattern recognition, as well as stacking objects by size, and matching objects to silhouettes of the same shape. The game contains numerous references to unhealthy food, and no healthy food is displayed. Many of the challenges offer players the ability to see and arrange food, but the food shown primarily consists of cookies and cake.

 

In the top right hand corner of the app, there is a section titled “Parent Centre”. Pressing and holding this icon presents the user with a basic mathematical problem (e.g. 7+1=___) that must be correctly solved before being allowed access to this area. Within this, parents are encouraged to read the parents guide, rate the app, and are able to purchase a bundle pack of in-game content for $7.99. The in-app purchasing within this game is unavoidable if the player wishes to proceed past the initial ten “Party” levels. Users are also encouraged to purchase and connect a device called a Phillips Hue. The price of this device is not stated, and you are unable to purchase it through the app.

In App purchasing

Users can purchase in-app content either as a single planet pack $4.17, or as a value pack containing all of the in-game planets for $7.99.

Gambling

No gambling content was found during this review.

Advertising and product placement

A product called the Philips Hue is advertised within this app in the parents section. The product is a type of LED lighting.

Game playing behaviour which may be of concern to some parents

No game playing behaviour which may be of concern to parents was found during this 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.