Price: $3.99 Download on the App Store
What’s in a name? That which we call a book, by any other name would read the same. Unless of course it’s SlimCricket’s newest children’s ebook, The Witch With No Name. In this curious, interactive adventure tale kids follow a quirky little witch who has lost her name on an adventure to help her find it.
Accompanied by her trusty side-kick, Batina, the witch hunts down ingredients for a potion that will help her find her name. Kids can interact with all sorts of various objects, hunt for the hidden cricket on each page and play different mini-games interspersed throughout the book.
As far as interactive ebooks go, The Witch With No Name is top shelf. The 3D animation is well done and designed to catch the primary audience’s attention. Interactive objects are obviously marked to encourage children to engage, but do not detract from the scenes themselves. The story progresses logically and the narration in “read to me” mode is great, with each character taking on its own unique voice. All told, it’s a very well done production.
The Witch With No Name has two modes for reading – Read to Me and Read By Myself. The “Read by Myself” mode isn’t as fluid as the narrated mode and readers will have to wait until the continue arrow pops up in the upper right hand corner to continue, but there are still things to explore on screen to keep their attention. There are also adjustable difficulty levels – easy, medium and hard – to tailor the mini-game difficulty to different age groups. The mini-games include a jigsaw-like puzzle, a game of sorting objects, a firefly collection game, a quest to make a giant sneeze and a musical score that involves timing (and, um…farting). Kids can also unlock a surprise mode by completing certain tasks.
While the story itself is cute, the lines are a bit quirky at times and the bat says some pretty off-the-wall stuff. Still, it’s really part of the charm of The Witch with No Name. The biggest surprise comes at the end of the story when the witch has all the ingredients for her potion and then looks into her see-all crystal ball one last time. Most kids will love this part as it reveals the person who can give the witch her name –and surprise – guess who it is?
The current sale price of The Witch with No Name HD is a good value as this interactive ebook has some reread/replay value that others are lacking. There is also the SD version for iPhone and iPod Touch for just .99. For a good story that’s a bit unconventional and full of hidden surprises and fun, The Witch with No Name is a great interactive ebook for kids.