My Fixie Town: Collection of Games for Childrens App Review
Price: Free In-App Purchases
My Fixie Town is a collection of game activities for the very young. Preschoolers are challenged to various types of coordination, placement, matching and sorting games as they help the main characters solve “incidents” and put the town to rights after trouble strikes.
13 different mini games
Earn presents by completing missions
Variety of different games presented at each round
Play games in any order
My Fixie Town is a high quality app that includes a variety of game formats. Each game includes brief instructions to the user to explain how to play, but these are somewhat difficult to understand at times due to the speaker’s accent and intonation. Game play is quite intuitive, but some younger players might have difficulty. Developers may wish to consider a protected parent area containing written game descriptions, instructions, and pointing out the benefits of each game.
This app activates many important skills that will help preschoolers practice skills to control the device and nurture readiness skills. The various games activate eye-hand coordination, attention, observation, shape matching, figure-ground, closure, and more. Players also discover a lot about dragging and dropping, tapping, following instructions, and so forth, which will help them play more complex games as they grow.
Little users will feel powerful as they solve the puzzles and put things right in their role as the heroes of Fixie Town. The puzzles and games are perfect for the preschool users in the intended audience, including things like catching spiders to drop in a jar (the spiders pop in and out, so kids need to be observant and quick), dragging misplaced items to their matching outlines on the shelves to clean the room, and even moving cows off of rail lines by guiding a cow-catching helicopter. Developers display quite a sense of humor, and have included a wide array of game challenges to keep children’s attention.
This app offers a lot of content for free, making it a good value. However, there are many risks associated with young children using this system. Parents should be aware that there are unprotected in-app purchases, and those who choose not to make them have the option to play more games by watching advertisements, which connect to the open internet.
This app is not particularly child friendly, which is a shame. There are frequent ratings request pop-ups. The Fixie Town tasks are randomly presented in groups, and some have video icons on their access symbols. Those that have the video icon ask players to either watch an advertisement to continue or make the one-time in-app purchase to remove all ads. There is no parent gate protecting access to the App Store, and the ads may or may not be appropriate for young children, and all open the web browser to connect to the advertisers’ websites. For example, one ad showed an extensive scene from a movie that was emotionally intense and could be frightening to young players. It would be much better if developers would put these things (ads, purchase and ratings requests) behind a parent gate. Furthermore, the app presents a ratings screen every few levels, and requires that parents turn on location services in their device. There are margin advertisements constantly displaying that will drop an unsuspecting child out of the app and onto the internet
My Fixie Town: Collection of Games for Childrens has a lot of potential to be fun for the target preschool audience, with thirteen engaging minigames and a fun premise of being a super hero and saving the day. However, the requirement to watch ads, the ease of accessing unauthorized purchases and getting out into the open internet, and the request to turn on location services are entirely inappropriate for an app designed for young children to use.