Mental Stimulation as opposed to Violent Computer Games

Sometimes as a parent I think you have to re-think your ideals. When our son was 14 he wanted to play violent games that were rated 18. You may be aware that I did my dissertation on violence in children’s television advertisements, and so really was not happy for him to play them. But, it turned out that, not only were the majority of his peers playing it, but that there were large number of children in our younger son’s class (aged 7) playing it also. It was at this point that we agreed that if he could behave more like an adult (helping around the house etc) that he could play more adult (violent not sexual) games. We monitored it, restricted the times and kept an eye on his behaviour also.

3ds

As we a very technology minded family, it will come as no surprise that 3 of my 4 children own a Ds (the 3D version, though the 5 year old has the 3D bit turned off). Games of a non-violent nature are most welcome, and encourage the 3 older boys to play together (only the oldest is allowed violent games).

So when there was a chance for us to review Puzzler World 2013 I jumped at the chance. This game is not only non-violent, but also mentally stimulating. My oldest son (now 16) took his GCSE Maths a year early (gaining an A*), so knew he would enjoy the challenge of the puzzles.

puzzler

It must be good because my children arguing over it – whose turn it was and how long they’d been on it. And my 16 year old wrote me a review without any argument.

  • A variety of puzzle types, and lots of them.

Wordsearch
Crossword
Sudoku
Codeword
Pathfinder
Silhouette
Fitword
Spot the Difference
Number Jig
Link-a-Pix
Sum People
Backwards
Maze-a-Pix
Split Words
Takegaki
Loko
Suko

  • Three profiles for multiple users.
  • Use of touch screen for puzzles.
  • There is an option to set handwriting, for touch screen drawn letters, although not initially noticeable (timed); and my 9 year old brother had trouble with the handwriting option when playing hangman as it picked up that he’d wrote a different letter to the one that he wanted.
  • Bonus levels to earn hint coins is fairly nice – which can then be spent to aid in a puzzle, though it could be easily abused as coins are easy to earn.
  • Puzzles can be saved for later (one at a time).
  • Teenager found some of the puzzle concepts fun, though some seemed somewhat bland.
  • Some information detailing each puzzle is available but isn’t in the best most noticeable location.
  • List of puzzles could be better organised (especially as there’s many 100s of them) – eg by type or difficulty.
  • No real indicator of the level of difficulty in the puzzles.
  • Menu features mainly icons (little text) for simplicity, but can be confusing for new users that do not know what is what. Nine year old was baffled, and somewhat confusing.  For example, there’s a green button (play triangle) that appears to send you to the puzzle menu, but instead picks your last selected button, which seems pointless as you can also click what you require instead.
  • Could be improved if it at least showed text or tutorials on menu for each puzzle type.
  • It says aged 3+ but it was too complicated for my 5 year old brother.

You can get your hands on it for £21.99 at Play, £19.99 at Amazon and £14.99 at Game

We received a Free copy of this Game for purposes of a Review.