Most applications on the App Store aimed at teaching kids are boring, un-entertaining and simply not fun, but the developers over at Icelandic Games Studio and Radiant Games has gone and changed that with their new educational game Box Island. You play as Hiro a Blue Emoticon like box. Hiro’s friend, a Green Boxed friend has landed in a Volcano surrounded by what we can only assume to be are the baddies. You are tasked with rescuing your friend and saving him from these baddies.
Box Island plays differently to any other puzzle game I have played on iOS. You aren’t presented with the standard D pad to progress through the level, instead you must plan your path by placing the correct directions in the start menu in the top left of the screen. Put in the correct directions and you will complete the level, but get it wrong and risk falling in to the water or getting caught by the baddies.
The levels increase in difficulty the more you complete implementing new elements that the player is tasked to work with. Such as boxes which can be used to push the baddies into the water, and prevent their beams from grabbing you and a repeat button which allows you to repeat moves without having to place them in the start box more than once, but only to the special designated red square. Whilst at first the game appears to be simple, even I, an experienced mobile gamer failed levels early on, quite often forgetting an extra forward move.
Box Island would be a perfect game for parents who want to teach their children at an early age directions and counting, and according to Radiant Games even helps kids in early stages of coding . Through the game they will learn left from right, forward from back and also learn to count spaces. As the game goes on they will learn how to deal with challenging tasks where they will have to adapt to the situations.
The levels are well designed and I felt that the level of progression throughout the game felt right. The characters are well designed, show relevant emotions dependent on the situation, and don’t complicate the game for the younger players, the same can be said about the games environments. If you want to teach kids the basics of coding, or even basic directions then Box Island is worth picking up, or at-least trying.
Box Island comes with 10 levels free, you can unlock 20 more levels for $2.99, 50 for $5.99 and the whole game for $7.99. The game has 100 levels in total. The game can be downloaded on the App Store.