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I racked my brain for the perfect present for my 3 year old and eventually decided the VTech V.Smile motion games console as he is already a lover of technology. To compliment the purchase I also decided on Thomas & Friend Game.
The console itself is similar to the old Megadrive or Nintendo games console and takes cartridge games. It has motion controllers meaning you can chose to play either with the more standard joypad or instead tilt the pad to move. This is particularly good for the younger children.
The console has been designed for 3-7 year olds and there are a large selection of games available aimed at differing age ranges meaning that the console can "grow" with the child.
Graphics for the console are very basic although I doubt this is an issue for the younger children.
Thomas & Friends Motion Game
The Game is aimed at 3-5 year olds and is based around the childrens classic Thomas the Tank Engine. It costs around £14.99 and comes packaged in a plastic outer. The cartridge itself has no box (although the console provides an area to store the cartridges). The costs of the cartridge varies quite alot so shopping around is definately recommended. I managed to pick it up for £6.20 plus postage from Amazon.
It offers to teach the basic skills required by young children such as Colours, numbers and Letters however the game play is very difficult for a 3 year old (in fact there is a part where it asks questions to which you have to press the coloured button to answer but the questions can be vague and hard to follow even as an adult).
There are several different games to play including the main game where you make selections to pick the correct route along the tract and a sing along section. It does indeed attempt to teach children about number letters and colours. Unfortunately though the game play is not good and it lacks any excitement.
The controls are easy to handle but the instructions during game play is not very imaginative. It does look and soung Like Thomas The Tank Engine though so if your child is a Thomas fan it will probably have more appeal.
Not enough to the games on this Cartridge and a little complicated for the younger end of the age rage. Would only recommend for Children that are already fans of Thomas The Tank Engine
This game is for use with the V smile game system. It is designed for ages 3+
The Thomas the Tank Engine game is very colourful and the object is to guide Thomas and friends through a series of tasks. The child learns various subjects as they progress through the game such as counting, colours etc as they need to master these skills to complete the tasks. The game is also good for helping with consentration and also learning co-ordination skills as they have to press the correct buttons etc to guide their characters.
The game cost is about £10. I think it would hold a childs interest level up to about 5 years old but no older as it is quite basic. I have a 1 year old who also enjoys watching the game and seeing what the characters do although at 1 she is too young to use it herself but it is something we can play with together.
There are lots of colours and music which do grab the attention.
A good game with learning benefits too.
Hop on board and go on a learning journey with Thomas and friends, like Harold and Bertie. Teaches spelling, counting, animals, logic, colours, shapes and problem solving.