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Peekaboo! Guess Who? an inviting game for the smallest of iPad users

David Winograd

Peekaboo! Guess Who? (US$1.99) from Bacciz Apps is a lovely little educational iPad game for toddlers and young children. It teaches kids to identify the sounds animals make.

Gameplay is simple and features both a "Kids Mode" for very young players and a "2+ Mode."

First, kids choose a setting -- Farm, Ocean, Jungle or Circus -- and are guided to the appropriate screen. Players next hear a sound made by a hidden animal (in 2+ Mode, the animal is briefly displayed at the start of the turn). Next, three animals appear in circles and the player taps their choice of who made the sound.

If correct, the circle changes to a smiley face and the child is rewarded with a big "Yay!" or "Yippee!" The animal's name is displayed as it emerges from behind a curtain, barn door pile of leaves or forest of seaweed, depending on the level being played.

If the wrong animal is chosen, the face frowns and another choice can be made.

The game also fosters independent play. For example, kids are prompted through gameplay by a dopey, Wallace Shawn-sounding voice. Also, if a player hesitates for a certain amount of time, a hand appears and points out the hidden animal's location. Finally, you can switch between Kid Mode and 2+ Mode at anytime with a tap.

Gallery: Peekaboo! Guess Who? Gallery | 12 Photos

Most elements are brightly-colored and all the animals look happy with huge, friendly-looking blue eyes. In fact, they look like early animated Disney characters. The full version features over forty animals to be found across four locations. There is also a free lite version with one location and six animals. I would suggest that this be downloaded first since it gives one a feeling for the game. I will bet that after looking at the free version, parents will be more than happy to plunk down the two dollars to get the full app.

In the past, Bacciz released confusing apps which threw in everything including the kitchen sink to show potential clients what they could do. The loser in that approach was the child. With Peekaboo! Guess Who?, they have apparently changed direction, to the player's benefit. This game is focused like a laser beam and does one thing very well, with enough variety in the graphics and sound to keep kids coming back. I recommend it highly for the smallest of iPad users.

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