Yoda's Challenge - Box

Yoda's Challenge
Ages 6 - 8

As an edutainment title - this has more going for it than some. Of the six activities, the best ones are jamming with the cantina band and exploring the caves. Playing along with the cantina band is fun. There are colors and sounds to help you duplicate the introductory themes to songs that the band will play for you. If you decide to make your own music you can experiment with different types of chords to accompany your melody. The chord bit is novel. Most music activities stop with a simple single line melody. Teaching chords could be something that might interest a lot of people.

For teaching how to follow directional instruction like left and right and North and South I haven't seen a better example. The cave exploring activity starts out with simple left and right directions and graduates to the cardinal points of the compass. A triangle on a simple plan tracks your progress, so you get a little map reading experience. The choice of an equilateral triangle was a poor one because it does not clearly indicate the players change in direction. Maybe next time it will be perfect.

In Trap the Droids you have to match the pitch and tempo of drum beats to spring the traps. It has amusing animations but the background drumming is confusing. In the races between Jar Jar and Queen Amidala you not only have to evaluate what is the shortest route, you have to select a course that takes advantage of the racers innate skills. Interesting concepts, but more work should have been done on the cursor control since quick and accurate response is important.

The tangram puzzle is standard stuff, the matching word shapes is weird and I'm not sure useful. I mean, what can you do with the knowledge that the word till is made up of a tall, a short and two tall shapes?

It still adds up to a pretty good game. With a little more care some of the annoyances could have been avoided. While there is little replay value, by the time you get through all the puzzles you have gotten your money's worth.

Reviewed by Genevieve Katz

  • Yoda's Challenge
  • © Lucas Learning Ltd. $29.95
  • Windows 95/98 and Mac - System 7.6 or higher
  • 11/99