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Tuesday, 17 April 2018

Review: It's Spring Again


Review: It's Spring Again

It might be time to child-proof your Nintendo Switch.



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It's Spring Again
Baba Yaga Games | Nintendo Switch | Digital Only
1 Player
Reviewed by: Curtis Chapman | 17th April 2018

* Review Code Provided by: Sometimes You *







If the dreary weather we've had recently hasn’t given you any indication of what season we're currently in then this game's title certainly will, It’s Spring Again attempts to educate the younger folk on what to expect from the weather throughout the year. Out today on the Switch and priced at a ridiculous £1.79, are you willing to let your little one get their hands on your console in the name of education?

The media has told us time and time again not to plonk your child in front of a screen, to limit their screen time and never let them play video games (unless you want to one day be harbouring a serial killer) but with the rise in technology and its ability to engage the user better than anything else that has come before it, coupled with the worlds growing dependence on technology as a whole, there is an argument to say that having your child avoid TV, computers, tablets, and phones outright would put your child at a disadvantage in the future by missing out on the early years development, the hands on experience with tech and all of the educational opportunities that they offer.

It’s Spring Again is a short interactive title available on smartphones, PC, and handheld consoles and aimed firmly at children aged from 2 to 5. Utilising bright colorful animations and a full voice acted script to the game explains the visual and geographic changes that take place during the seasonal changes that happen throughout the year.



Spring Again Screenshot 1


More a co-operative title (for the lowest age recommendation) than something to let your child tackle alone, It’s Spring Again offers parents the opportunity to contribute to the experience. The title has less than 10 minutes of actual content, looping around once it has finished, and much like reading a storybook requires those guiding the young player to actively participate in the process, asking questions and giving hints on the areas of interaction they should be focussing on for them to really achieve a full experience.

Children have a short attention span and the title is just the right length and provides the right amount of content to cover the subject matter. You will find that children will either want to loop through the content several times, requiring less parental input each time or will simply return to the title often, drawn to the color images and soothing voiceover. This pays praise to Baba Yaga Games' ability to understand their target audience and produce a title that caters to their strengths and understanding.

While the game does require the touchscreen to function, the game can also be set onto auto-play, allowing children who are unable to grasp the concept of the touchscreen controls or for those parents who would rather their child watch the experience instead to simpl watch the content unfold infront of them automatically.

One of the biggest issues with the games four interactive screens are the relatively small interactive areas in which the child is supposed to individually select. These areas can often be spaced close together, with some occasionally overlapping and during testing occasionally nearly impossible to select. With no instruction on what the player is actually supposed to do and no ability to progress without selecting all the interactive areas, this has the ability to both confuse and frustrate both parent and child.



Spring Again Screenshot 2


With high production quality and a price to reflect the extremely short length of this title, it’s a solid purchase for any parent wanting to explain seasons to their children. With a few of the bugs worked out and more content covering a wider range of material, this series could be a good starting point in convincing parents that the Nintendo Switch isn’t simply a machine to play games with and that it could also function as an effective teaching tool, with the potential to help grown young minds.


FOR THE WIN OR FOR THE BIN?



+ First Educational title for Nintendo Switch.
+ Colour art and a soothing voiceover.
+ Autoplay mode for those who cannot use touchscreen

- Awkward touch areas that do not always register.
- Lacking in content.
- No real support for Docked Mode.

Verdict: Above Average – Worth a Try



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