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Article:    Adventure Games

 
 

What better medium than software to send your kids on adventures through a circus, into a spooky castle, and even inside a human body? The following are our favorite adventure-style programs originally produced by Humongous Entertainment (now published by Atari) that take kids (under age 9) boldly where they've never been before—or to "places" they've been, but never in quite the same way. These titles are wonderfully original, at times stumping, but always fun—not to mention the fact that they do have some educational value! 

Each program plays much like an interactive scavenger hunt. Kids need to solve a larger problem step by step. They lead their hero through adventures, paying attention to conversations with other characters, and collecting items (such as ropes and french fries) that will help them solve smaller dilemmas. The cartoon-like graphics are topnotch, and mini-games only add to the fun. Kids use memory and mapping skills in order to move about the environment.

Pajama SamPajama Sam is an animated boy who is always ready to overcome his fears and investigate his concerns. Though his head looks like a pale green mop top, he's a believable little boy whose adventurous spirit and determination will appeal to kids—whether he's tackling his fear of darkness in Pajama Sam No Need to Hide When It's Dark Outside, conquering his fear of thunder in Pajama Sam 2 Thunder and Lightning Aren't So Frightening, or learning about the importance of proper nutrition in Pajama Sam 3: You Are What You Eat From Your Head to Your Feet. These titles feature gorgeous graphics, compelling story lines, and plenty of head-scratching problem solving for children approximately 6-9.

The first title, No Need to Hide, is generally available at a discounted price, and is excellent. The second in the series, Thunder and Lightning, is probably the best; and Pajama Sam 3 is the easiest. For kids under 8, expect to help out a little.

 

Putt-Putt PictureFor kids just a little younger, Putt Putt is a fun software companion. Kids will enjoy helping out this polite purple car and his puppy pal Pep as they find displaced baby animals in Putt Putt Saves the Zoo, retrieve school supplies (and Pep!) back in time in Putt Putt Travels Through Time, prepare to race in the Cartown 500 in Putt Putt Enters the Race, and save the circus in Putt Putt Joins the Circus. For newbies, both Putt Putt Saves the Zoo and Putt Putt Joins the Circus are predictable enough once solved to be comfortable. Kids who prefer a "new" adventure the second time around will enjoy the other titles mentioned here--objects are randomized so that new challenges await kids in subsequent plays. Fun music, mini-games, adorable graphics, and problem solving all contribute to make these adventures fantastic.

 

Freddi Fish is an underwater sleuth who is always determined to get to the bottom of any kind of fishy happenings under the sea. She has starred in a total of five adventures to date. The latest adventure, Freddi Fish 5: Creature in Coral Cave is probably the most challenging of the bunch, and Freddi Fish 3: The Case of the Stolen Conch Shell is our favorite, but difficult to find. 

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Of the three Junior Adventure series mentioned above, Putt Putt tends to be the easiest (good for grades K-1), Freddi Fish a tad more challenging (best suited for kids in grades 1-2), and Pajama Sam is probably better for kids in grades 2-3.

Though each of these adventure-style programs can be played solo, the richest experience will be enjoyed when more than one child (or parent!) teams up to brainstorm and think through the games together.


Putt-Putt Saves the Zoo - $ 4.95

Retail Price: 19.99
You Save: $15.04

Putt-Putt Travels Through Time - $ 4.95

Retail Price: 19.95
You Save: $15.00
From: Family Savings Outlet

Putt-Putt Enters the Race - $ 4.95

Retail Price: 29.99
You Save: $25.04
From: Family Savings Outlet

Putt-Putt® Pep's Birthday Surprise - $ 4.95

Retail Price: 19.95
You Save: $15.00
From: Family Savings Outlet

Freddi Fish™ 3: The Case Of The Stolen Conch Shell™ - $ 4.95

Retail Price: 29.95
You Save: $25.00
From: Family Savings Outlet

Freddi Fish™ 2: The Case Of The Haunted Schoolhouse™ - $ 4.95

Retail Price: 39.95
You Save: $35.00
From: Family Savings Outlet

Freddi Fish™ 4: The Case of the Hogfish Rustlers of Briny Gulch™ - $ 4.95

Retail Price: 19.99
You Save: $15.04
From: Family Savings Outlet

Freddi Fish™ 5: The Case of the Creature of Coral Cove™ - $ 4.95

Retail Price: 19.95
You Save: $15.00
From: Family Savings Outlet

Pajama Sam® 3 You Are What You Eat From Your Head To Your Feet™ - $ 4.95

Retail Price: 19.95
You Save: $15.00
From: Family Savings Outlet

Pajama Sam in No Need to Hide When it's Dark Outside™ - $ 4.95

Retail Price: 39.95
You Save: $35.00
From: Family Savings Outlet

Spy Fox is a "Get Smart" type of secret agent whose adventures are both hilarious and educational. Kids uses their logical thinking skills in Spy Fox Operation Ozone, in which they lead Spy Fox on a mission to thwart a money-hungry poodle's diabolical plans to destroy the ozone layer. This title is excellent, and appropriate for children ages 8 or 9 and up. If you can find Spy Fox Dry Cereal and Spy Fox Some Assembly Required, grab them as well. They are uniformly excellent. 

Spy Fox 3: Operation Ozone (Jewel Case)

 

 

 

 


 


 


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