American Girls: Mia  Goes for Great  - Review

American Girls: Mia Goes for Great
Ages: Everyone

American Girl games are wholesome their dolls are too. They have avoided being saccharine or preachy. Family closeness, working for what you want, friendship, honesty and perseverance are all there subtly behind the story. And the story is the armature about which is built a figure skating activity.

Mia lives in a town that has plenty of snow before Christmas with all the houses decorated in green and red. Mia has been encouraged by her coach to enter into a figure skating contest in the local winter show. Before she can begin skating she has to pick out music and have a costume, which entails many back and forth trips to the library, her house, the skating rink, and the trimming shop where her mother works. Finally you get to the Program Builder where you link together various steps to create a skating routine which must be the length of your musical selection. The resulting video is impressive. But you still have to practice and this involves matching the arrow keys to the ones on the screen. Miss, and Mia falls on the ice, do well and you are rewarded with seeing Mia in her costume perform. Its much too much fun watching Mia fall and get up again.

You go through all of this again to have Mia compete in the Regionals - but now you know about repeatedly trying out objects on all the players. The game proceeds through the tips from the drop-down dialogue. You move with the mouse or the arrow keys. The only disconcerting thing is that Mias walk looks like she is ice skating. Attaching the foot to the floor has been solved a longtime ago even students know how.

The two mini games, sweepings snow from a pond and picking up beads are modification of the select 3 games although they have added interesting twists of old games. Mia Goes for Gold is the second American Girl game weve reviewed. American Girl - Julie Saves the Eagles was involved with endangered species and had the same wholesomeness about it.

With the interest in figure skating, I am surprised that it has been so long since figure skating games have been produced there have been scads of skateboarding games. In the 90s there was Kristi Yamaguchi Fantasy Ice Skating and Michelle Kwan Figure Skating and in the Kwan game you could put your own face in the skating figure a great touch. How come these designers didnt know about it?

Fun Factor: Nice to have a figure skating game again
Female Factor: Mia is a wholesome, cheerful and determined character
Player Friendly: Mother's hints are OK but could be more specific.

Reviewed by: Editor - 03/08

  • American Girls: Mia Goes for Great
  • © THQ/Valuesoft
  • Platform(s): WVISTA XP
  • To Order: Win $19.99