Monday, October 26, 2009

Kids Love Their Didj!

Well, I'm only assuming they love it, they could possibly hate it. While shopping for a new coffee maker yesterday, I ran across LeapFrog's Didj handheld. Didj, pronounced "dij" as in the first half of "digital", is touted as a Custon Gaming System for children 5-10 years old. As it is developed by LeapFrog, it is also a covert teaching tool. Thankfully, unlike the Pico the Didj games actually look like fun.

The Didj game that attracted my attention was Sonic the Hedgehog. As recent years have taught us, naming a game Sonic the Hedgehog does not necessarily mean that it will be a straight port of 1991's Sonic the Hedgehog. As Didj is a learning tool, I was skeptical of this being a port so I checked out the box and played a demo.

The box itself is rather cool. New school Sonic holding a ring (what is this, Chaotix?) with a drawing of Green Hill in the background. Nothing eye popping, but at least some effort was put in to make it look more than a piece of stock art on a white background. The game itself is rather interesting. Sort of a mashup of Sonic 1-3 featuring 3D Sonic moves (homing attack and wall jump) and a remix of the Mushroom Hill Zone theme. From what I can tell, each stage features gadgets that must be destroyed, similar to hunting down and destroying machines in Sonic CD. In the Didj Sonic, gadgets are word games featuring cannons, badniks gears and other devices that are controlled to fill in the blanks of words. While the game is pretty elementary (it IS for 7-10 year olds) it's rather fun. Think of it as Typing of the Dead meets Sonic the Hedgehog. If you have a little one, or must own every Sonic game ever made, both the handheld and game only cost $55 total.

1 comment:

  1. Wow. Sonic definitely wins for best educational videogame starring a popular videogame mascot. I'd play that especially if I was six.