* Prices may differ from that shown
Postman Pat: Special Delivery Service for the DS retails at just under £13 on the Amazon site, and we found it secondhand in a local secondhand games and DVDs shop for only £6 in mint condition. After playing it for a bit with the grandson, I'm so impressed I'd have happily paid full price for it.
There isn't too much reading involved in this, but after a while your child will be able to recognise which options they should select to get through to their favourite games without being able to read much. As long as they can recognise and remember a few key words they'll be fine. The writing is all simple and in a large font though, so some early readers will find they can use this alone. I think the game is best suited to 4-6 year olds, and I'd say that any older would find this too easy, and any younger would find this too hard.
There are lots of simple but challenging games for children to play, which all have a Postman Pat theme to them. One game involves spotting the odd one out, and as you go up each level, the difference becomes more subtle and harder to spot. The van game, where you have to direct the van to the other side, is also trickier than it first looks. You have to keep tapping the square in front of the van to find the right shaped piece to get Pat across (different pieces are available each square). If you don't do this quickly enough, Pat crashes!
Other games include things like jigsaw puzzles and pick your pairs style games. Lots of variety, and all easily accessible through selecting from one of a handful of top catagories, then one of a few choices from a smaller sub-menu. The layout is very child friendly and easy for a youngster to navigate their way around I think. No scrolling around and lots of picture icons too so that non-readers can find their way around just as well as readers can.
Definitely recommended for young gamers who are new to having a DS. This is an ideal first game to buy because there are so many different mini games included on the one cartridge. It's easy to use, and yet offers challenges through the increasing difficulty levels of the puzzles at the same time. Well worth the price tag and not just for kids who like Pat - it's a good game for any youngster in the 4-6yrs age range.