Parents' Choice Foundation: Reviewing Children's Media Since 1978

Disney/Pixar's UP

Disney/Pixar's UP

Fall 2009 Video Games
Ages: 5 - 8 yrs.
Price: $24.99
Gaming System: Leapster
The first thing that you'll notice about Disney Pixar's Up for the Leap Frog Leapster is that it's gorgeous. And if you've seen the film, you'll see that "the look" of the Leapster games has been transformed to a more vintage Disney.

"Trip to the Tepui" is a side-scrolling game where the object is to get Carl's house to Paradise Falls. Along the way, players have to collect numbered clouds to finish the number pattern at the bottom of the screen. The game goes on a little too long, and some ill-timed obstacles can make it hard to play (the only way to avoid a flock of birds is to fly over an incorrect answer), but it's fun to have the film's signature trip represented here.

"Dog Dodge" is in the Frogger school of arcade games. You have to move Russell across the paths of the dogs to lead him to the correct answer to a math question that may include skip counting, addition, subtraction, and greater than/less than problems. Every once in a while, Kevin the bird shows up to jump Russell across. Some players wanted Kevin to be there throughout the game.

In the "Big Blimp Escape", Dug the dog is helping find Kevin, held captive on the blimp. Each room on the blimp has a series of questions, some location words: "find the object in the upper right corner" and some requiring prior knowledge, such as selecting a sarcophagus as something that may have a mummy inside. Although the packaging lists this as an animal identification game, it is a minor part of gameplay.

Though it won't necessarily teach anything new, this is a fine title for fans of the movie looking to take their math skills Up a notch.

Amy Kraft   ©2009 Parents' Choice
Amy Kraft is a freelance writer, producer, and game designer with over ten years of experience making media for children. She writes the blog Media Macaroni and lives in New York City with her husband, daughter and son.

Look for this product at:
LeapFrog Enterprises
Major, Specialty & Online Retailers

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