Children's Software Review:    Zoombinis Island Odyssey

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We love the Zoombinis. Not only are these little blue creatures endearing, they take kids on amazing journeys that truly work their brains. Yet it doesn't always feel like "work". This third title in the series sometimes does, however. That is not to say it isn't exceptional, because it is. But it is challenging.

A very welcome new feature allows children to adjust the difficulty levels of the activities downwards while they stay in adventure mode. Of course, the practice mode feature is still available (this allows kids to pick and choose their activities and difficulty levels). 

Once the activities are understood (and many of them take quite some effort to truly "get"), they are very compelling. The goal of the game is to lead Zoombinis through various challenges in order to reestablish the food chain for the Zerbles. The Bloats have devastated the island and the ever-courageous Zoombinis are ready to turn it around again. Kids will choose 12 Zoombinis per batch this time around and they engage in fewer challenges altogether. Also different is the fact that most activities don't really directly involve the Zoombini characters. Much of the time, one of the party of Zoombinis just holds watch over the activities. Also new is the overall theme -- while the journey involves plenty of the series' trademark logic puzzles, there is a science spin to Island Odyssey. Bits of Astronomy, Physics, Social Sciences, and so on, are featured. Nevertheless, I would still consider this game to be predominantly a logical thinking software title.

If you are new to the series, absolutely start with Zoombinis Logical Journey. It is the easiest to "get into" and master. If you've already played that game, then you will most definitely want more, and both Zoombinis Mountain Rescue and Zoombinis Island Odyssey will deliver just that. 

See more screens from the game and our comments in our screenshot gallery.

For more information, user reviews, or to buy: Zoombini's Island Odyssey

Pros:
  • Exceptional educational content.
  • Compelling story line.
  • Blend of science and logic.
  • Highly original content.

 

Cons:
  • Quite challenging -- not for kids who don't want to work their brains.
  • Less variety of games than previous editions.

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Published: 2002 By: The Learning Company Ages 9-up Win/Mac
 

 

 

This title is one of 4 bundled titles in:

Adventure Workshop Mix 6 ,1st Grade - 3rd Grade (PC & Mac)

which includes SpongeBob SquarePants Typing, Zoombinis Island Odyssey, ClueFinders Adventures, and Reader Rabbit Math.

Our Rating:

A

To Buy this CD-ROM:

Buy Zoombini's Island Odyssey at Amazon.com

 
Reviewed November 2002   Comments? Email us.
 

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