So there's the basics of what to expect from the app, but let's dig into a little more detail. As I mentioned in the intro, the application is free. However, the game does allow in-app purchases, which is something to definitely watch out for if your kids are using the app.
Within the app, you can buy the teacher edition (which allows you to play without lives and time limits, so you can focus solely on the learning activities) and you can also purchase more coins within the game. Personally, I would recommend turning off in-app purchases in your settings menu if you're letting your kids use this (or any) game, just to avoid unexpected charges.
And other than that, you can let your kids have free reign of the application. It's well-designed, includes great learning activities, and has the potential to get kids engaged in math and logic practice. When you first sign in, you'll have the option of connecting via Facebook (which, especially for early elementary students, I would recommend against), or skipping that step and starting the game.
The basic premise of the game is that you're trying to help restore your kingdom to its former glory by repairing the surrounding magical towers, each of which requires a different (and increasingly difficult) set of math or logic skills to complete. As you complete each tower, you earn stars, which are then used to unlock new towers.
While playing you earn coins, and when you make mistakes you lose lives (which replenish over time). You can then use your coins to expand your kingdom, add new buildings, and purchase upgrades.
When you're not busy earning stars and repairing towers, you can spend time in your kingdom, creating new buildings, and expanding your world. And, if you do decide to connect via Facebook, you can share your kingdom with your friends and exchange gifts as well.
As for the math and logic puzzles, they are very well designed and hit upon numerous different skills. They start out easy and proceed to ever-increasing difficulty levels. Overall, I think the game would be perfect for mid to late elementary students, although early elementary students would be able to work through many of the more basic puzzles. Here are samples of a few of the challenges:
On top of all that, there are also plenty of unlockables and extra quests to keep students engaged throughout the learning process. You can visit your castle any time you want to check out any secrets you've unlocked or to see the quests you've completed.
And overall, that's the app! Personally, I think it's a great combination of math/logic skills with the type of game play that students will enjoy. It's an excellent way to get students playing beneficial, educational games on their own time. As mentioned earlier, my only qualm is the in-app purchases, and my worry that students would make purchases on their own if parents haven't turned off that feature. But, aside from that, I would absolutely recommend letting your kids try out this application!
The opinions expressed in this review are my own. I was not compensated for reviewing this application