The act of traveling around the world hunting for hidden treasures has always piqued many people's interests, including mine. Today, we see the release of a new app, Wombi Treasures, which allows juniors to experience the excitement of a treasure hunt.
X Marks the Spot
Wombi Treasures is a unique little game aimed at juniors ages 4 and up. Designed to intrigue interests in geography, archaeology and history, the app allows you to travel around the world in search of precious artifacts.
You will be playing as Scouty, an adventurous raccoon who pilots his own airplane. Your journey begins with a world map that has been marked with five randomly selected locations spread across the continents. A simple tap on any of these locations will immediately take you there.
Once you arrive at your selected location, you need to find the exact excavation site. You do this by comparing the treasure map that you have with the terrain that you see through Scouty's telescope. Three green lights on the left-hand side of the screen are your indicators - if they light up, then you have found the correct location.
On the excavation site, you need to select the appropriate tools on Scouty's tool belt to dig through and find the hidden treasure. This is necessary because each location has different terrains and environments. Sometimes, you may find a two-layer site where you need to apply one tool after another to get to your bounty.
After you complete all five challenges, a local newspaper will recognize your accomplishments and take a picture of Scouty with the treasures that you managed to collect. Then, you can tap on the play button again to restart the game with five newly randomized locations.
Parents Need to Know
With over 100 unique treasures spread in various locations all over the world, the app has a great replay value. In addition, I personally found the locations of the buried treasures geographically accurate, reflecting the developers' love and passion for history and geography. However, even without great knowledge of archaeology, Wombi Treasures is still a great app to enjoy with your juniors.
Designed with juniors in mind, the app is easy to navigate and play. It also lays many helpful hints to guide juniors as they play. For instance, there is a big red hint button to quickly find the exact location of the excavation site in addition to the clues shown in the telescope view. Another example is the use of different sound effects to indicate that the tool being used on the terrain is incorrect.
After playing several games, I have a few tips to help you find the correct tool for a specific surface. First, you need the pickaxe to clear any hard surfaces like stones or ice blocks. If you are facing sandy or muddy landscapes, you can use a trowel to clear them. With both of these tools, you can use taps to apply them across the entire screen.
If the surface is very thin, use a brush to clear it. If it is pitch-dark where you are, use the metal detector to clear the way. You can also tap, hold and drag both of these tools to quickly clear the screen.
Finally, if you find yourself facing a swarm of colorful insects, use your gloves to pick and swipe them away from the screen. It's a shame really, but we have a treasure to find.
Things I Like
I really appreciate the variety of digging tools introduced in this app. By choosing the appropriate tools, we minimize the accidental damages that we can do to the artifacts. This helps to teach our juniors that we need to appreciate and preserve the condition of these precious articles. Hopefully, this would bring up some creative questions from your juniors and spark off many interesting discussion sessions on the topics of archaeology and geology.
I also like the map reading activity because I know that even adults sometimes have difficulty in reading maps. By learning to match the treasure's location with the hint provided in the telescope view, my 3-year-old junior can practice his spatial reasonings.
Recently, we have seen the emergence of plenty of toy-like apps which allows juniors to safely play and explore without having to follow complicated instructions. Wombi Treasures is one of these apps. It is also an excellent way to get juniors to learn often underappreciated subjects like history and geography.
App was provided for our honest review.