Professor Kim – What’s Missing Here? is a charming nautical twist on a popular children’s matching game. Designed for ages 2 to 5 years old, the app relies on images and music to communicate the progression of the game. Users are presented brightly colored graphic images of an underwater scene, beginning with three sea-related items. Below the scene you are shown four corresponding items; the goal of the game is to select the item that is not displayed in the scene above. When the correct item is selected, a live fish flies across the screen and into your “fish bucket” on the side of your user panel. If an incorrect item is selected, a fish skeleton flies across the screen and lands into your “fish bucket”. Each bucket has five place holders that can be filled with live or skeletal fish. Once five turns have been taken, the level is over.
As each level is achieved, subsequent levels follow with increasingly more items to track. Beginning with just 3 items in the first level, by the fifth level goes up to 8 items- with each of these levels take place during the bright daytime. The final level (level 6), has 8 items, but now takes place during the evening, making the items darkened and harder to identify. The player is left to rely more on the shapes and less on the colors for identification purposes. Once this level has been successfully completed, the game is over.
The app can be alone or with a partner. During partner play, each player is competing against the other to locate the item that doesn’t belong. Five rounds are played per level.
The app can be played alone or with a partner. When playing with two players, the screen has a colorful user panel for each player displayed on each end of the screen, when held in portrait orientation. Players compete against one another; the first one to select an item receives the corresponding fish. Once one player has filled all 5 spots in their bucket, the game is over. The level score screen displays scores for each player on their side of the screen, with a rotating dial in the middle, spinning while it calculates the scores. Scores are rather ambiguous, but it appears that the person with the most live fish ultimately wins.
- The graphics and music are delightfully charming and the muted colors are easy on the eyes.
- Each level becomes progressively more difficult.
- There is no central language required to understand how to play the game, making it accessible to most everyone.
- Under the information section, there is a privacy graphic indicating that there are no ads, social interactions, location detection, web connectivity or in-app purchases.
- A “how to” section would be helpful, although the game is rather intuitive once you begin.
- It is unclear how the points are awarded.
- The timer doesn’t appear to have any impact on the game play.
- Perhaps adding more levels to the game or additional scenes would provide the end-user with more bang for their buck.
I would highly recommend this app to anyone with a young child. As a parent, I enjoyed the calming images and the very slight animation, giving the game a more interactive quality. This is a wonderful tool for matching and determining which items belong and which do not.