The appeal of a fun arcade game never fails, even if that game has a hidden educational agenda.
Warp Factor, designed by My Turn Mobile, intends to help kids practice identifying factors of numbers with a fun space theme. The problem with many educational games is that they only really nail one part; in other words, it’s a game but not so educational, or it’s educational but really just a quiz with bright colors and graphics.
Not so with Warp Factor. The educational part is clear; in order to earn points, you must understanding factoring, plain and simple. But it truly is a rather addicting game as well.
Set against a space backdrop, you control the “fuel pump” by tilting your iPhone back and forth, causing the pump to slide along the top of the screen. The pump responds well, accelerating more the steeper your angle. A number is written on the pump, and behind it you can see the other numbers in line. Tapping Drop at the bottom releases your number.
Along the bottom of the screen, various space crafts fly by waiting for fuel, each with a number. When you see a number float by that is a factor of the number in your fuel pump, line it up and tap drop to fuel the ship and send it flying off into space.
There is a fun bit of dexterity involved for kids as they tilt the phone and try to line up the drop just right. And each time they drop correctly, the equation showing that the number in their pump was indeed a factor of the ship’s number is displayed without interrupting the game. The occasional ship with a “1” floats by – an easy score! But sometimes a blank ship will go by too, creating an obstacle if you accidentally drop any number into it.
The instructions are laid out clearly in the beginning, along with a set of helpful tips on factoring for those who are new to the concept (or perhaps have forgotten!). And the game is easy enough to manipulate for even the smallest of hands.
At $1.99, the bottom line is this is a fun and addictive game to help your child with math.
Warp Factor is compatible with iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad and requires iPhone OS 2.2.1 or later. A small expedite fee was paid by the developer to speed up the publication of this review.