Learning through Play – Playing Games to Learn : Part 1 Reviews of: Kami and Wuzzle Trouble

The first installment in a series focusing on games that teach or strengthen logical thinking or skills through play.

My challenge is to find games that aren’t loosely veiled apps offering curriculum or workbook style repetitive flashcard style activities. I look for apps that hold the attention of the user, offer repeat gameplay value and along the way have something to offer in terms of education – be it physics, art, math, logic, science, history, English, etc.

Above all the games have to be fun.

Two Mini Reviews:

Kami & Wuzzit Trouble

Kami – an app by @state_of_play games on iOS. Described as a puzzle game of Fold and Fill, the origami nature of the puzzle is accompanied by a folding paper sound. The challenge is to get three to four colors of paper turned into one color in the fewest moves possible. You “pour the colors” onto existing colors by selecting them on the sidebar and then touch the play screen. We were immediately hooked. Puzzle categories offer evolving patterns that interweave the colors. Just about to be released on Steam for Mac & PC.

Overall: A wonderful visual logic puzzle which is age bending. Adults and Kids can play at the same level. We’ve already spend hours on this game.

 

 

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Screen Shot from Wuzzit Trouble

 

Wuzzit Trouble in an iOS game by Inner Tubes Games (a division of Brain Quake). A Math-driven visual combination lock. The challenge is to turn the rotator to the desired numbers in as few turns as possible to unlock keys and prizes. The number of ticks in a turn is determined by the counter on the small gear dial. You use math (multiplication, division, addition or subtraction) to calculate the distance divided by the number of turns. The process of completing the puzzle unlocks the cute Wuzzit creature from its cage.

Overall: Fun and challenging. I like that the visual twist of looking at multiplication through addition and subtraction using the turn of gears. It drives home the practical mathematical concept of integer partitions. We spent about 30 minutes this morning – achieving Level 20.

 

Resources

I didn’t find Wuzzit Trouble on a general search. It was written up on the KQED Mind/Shift blog. I encourage you to check it out.

I use Touch Arcade and App Shopper most frequently to find new apps. Both are great to get a better idea of what you are purchasing from the App Store.

Touch Arcade reviews are usually pretty good for games (although there isn’t an educational games category).

App Shopper keeps track of pricing for apps and shows sales/reductions as well as offers user ratings.

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