Developer: Andrey Alexandrovich
Price: $8.99 Download on the App Store
Pinocchio is a classic tale that (like so many others) could be reinvented and brought to life on iPad to be enjoyed by a new generation of kids. While the ebook revolution has both supporters and rebels, the iPad is the perfect platform for children’s stories – after all, children’s stories are meant to be interactive. Taking a stab at the reinvention of a timeless tale, RealPinocchio Interactive Book HD is a modern version of the classic fairy tale about the original little liar and features all the favorite characters, including Geppetto and the cricket with a conscience. RealPinocchio is told in a slightly different way than the original, presented in ebook format and interspersed with 28 different interactive animated scenes. RealPinocchio is also free for a limited time.
One of the primary advantages of RealPinocchio is its storybook length. With 36 (short) chapters and a total of 236 pages including animated interactive ones, RealPinocchio could serve well as a bed-time story that spans several nights. Each storybook page is accompanied by detailed artwork and the story sticks fairly close to the original prose of Pinocchio, but is not a verbatim translation of the original story to ebook format. Assuming this is because of copyright issues, it’s easier to forgive the re-telling, but it doesn’t get praises.
As much potential as RealPinocchio has to be a charming and delightful interactive storybook, it falls a bit short of carving out a place in the App Store archives as a brilliant reinvention of a classic tale. Its biggest flaw is in the editing of the story, which has unfortunately been neglected. Minor mistakes and even some blatant ones (such as repeating paragraphs) keep the story from rolling off the tongue and leave the flow a bit sloppy from time to time. Those listening may not notice, but the reader definitely will.
To even come close to perfection, RealPinocchio would have to make up for sloppy editing with some superb interactive scenes. While it’s true the animation in RealPinocchio is nicely done, these interactive pages make up approximately 12% of the storybook and though some pages are quite well-designed and relate to their position in the story, some pages have only minimal interaction when there could have been so much more. That’s not to say that the interactive pages are boring or poorly done, just that with only 28 pages out of 236 being interactive animation, they should be fully taken advantage of so that kids are aptly rewarded for thoroughly exploring each scene.
At the end of the day, if RealPinocchio had had stronger editing and more attention to detail, it would have been a splendid interactive storybook. If you can snatch it up for free, you’ve nothing to lose and the story can serve nicely for introducing kids to a character they may not know. RealPinocchio isn’t the greatest rendition of the story, but flaws aside, it is a decent attempt at converting the tale to a fully interactive electronic HD storybook app for iPad.
Check out this video sample of RealPinocchio Interactive Book HD: