We’ve come to expect high quality productions from developer StoryToys, but were still pleasantly surprised by their previous app Dino Dog. Pairing an adventurous tale with lovable characters and TV-quality cartoon animations, it was quite an entertainment.
Today, they’re following up on their achievement with a new app called ShipAntics: The Legend of Kiki Beast. It takes kids on a seafaring adventure led by Captain Fred and his crew to find the legendary Kiki beast.
Chapter 1: Grounded!
Opening the app is a cartoon episode that introduces kids to the Kipper Squad: kind-hearted Captain Fred, his precocious daughter Amanda, Otto the tall-tale touting octopus, and their nemesis-friend Maggie. The crew is heading to Kiki Island, where a legendary beast is said to live.
After a messy incident on the ship, Captain Fred instructs Otto to monitor the engine room and Amanda to mop the bridge. Kids can view these places, as well as the other parts of the ship, on a map. However, only the bridge is unlocked initially.
At the bridge, kids will help Amanda perform her duties by swiping or shaking the device. Then, they are off to the engine room to help Amanda and Otto find the missing pipes in the main ship engine. They will explore the ship, collecting clues and solving puzzles along the way.
For example, crew member Scoot would only give away the pipe he’s holding if he gets his favorite candy. Using the discarded candy wrapper as a clue, kids must select the candy with matching wrapper from the vending machine. They may also be required to solve other problems with the vending machine before they can actually get the candy.
Along with puzzles, kids may also encounter interesting riddles. In Ms. Sparks’ lab, for example, she would give them the item they want if they can answer the following question: “What walks on four legs in the morning, two at mid-day, and three in the evening?”
Parents Need to Know
ShipAntics is suitable for kids ages six and up. Reading skills are required to play as the game includes dialogs and riddles. The app is also available in French, German, and Spanish.
The initial version of ShipAntics consists only the first chapter. The next two chapters will be available via in-app purchase in the coming months.
In the first chapter, kids can explore five parts of the ship. They can earn up to three stars in each part by completing the puzzle, finding all the mystery items, and collecting the missing creatures. They can also get additional rewards such as clothes and accessories for Amanda and Otto.
Up to three game slots can be saved in the app. Thus, siblings can use the app together without disturbing each other’s progress.
Things I Like
I really enjoyed the TV-quality cartoon animations integrated into the game. They’re funny, and they help introduce the storyline to new players. The characters are easily likable as well.
Playing ShipAntics, I couldn’t help compare it to a Nintendo DS puzzle adventure game. The puzzles are quite clever, but still suitable for the app’s target audience. I like that kids are required to understand the storyline to progress through the game. On the other hand, it is quite fun to explore the ship to find the necessary parts to complete the big puzzle.
ShipAntics is an excellent puzzle adventure game for early readers. Kids will have their wits tested by solving various puzzles and riddles. They can also laugh along with the characters’ comical antics in the TV-quality cartoon animations integrated into the game. I enjoyed the first part of the series, and look forward to future appisodes.
App was provided for our honest review.