Pluto Learns Piano HD: iPad Written App Review
Pluto Learns Piano HD is a great new iPad app from Pluto Games. With the help of one debonair penguin, this game introduces popular songs in a fun new way and gives you hands-on piano playing practice, without leaving the comfort of your iPad. We love that this app helps kids learn very basic music theory through gameplay, and the fact that it’s free. We hope our iPad app review of Pluto Learns Piano strikes a chord with you.
There are two distinct types of gameplay in Pluto Learns Piano HD. First you will use a slide control to guide Pluto through the water in pursuit of the perfect tone. The idea is to avoid all the bad guys and incorrect notes and only hit the correct notes as they are played. If you run into enemies or hit too many bad notes your score drops. Notes are labeled with their actual tone values and appear on an unmarked music scale. The second gaming style is in the My Piano section, where you can earn stars for playing along with the same songs on a digital keyboard. Granted, it’s not a full keyboard, but it is two full octaves.
Pluto Learns Piano HD starts with two unlocked starter songs. Players must successfully gather stars to unlock the rest of the game as they go. Some of the songs are pretty difficult, especially as the app progresses. So it’s possible that you or an older child may need to help if small children are playing the game. Of course, you could just unlock them via in-app purchase, but it’s much more fun, in our opinion, to play, especially since the app is free.
We love the song selections, especially some of the holiday themed offerings. There’s something extremely fun about playing Jingle Bells and Deck the Halls on an iPad, and we bet this app will be a big hit with musically inclined folks ages four and up.
Layout & Design:
Not only is Pluto Learns Piano HD interesting and engaging, it’s also really well made. We love the quirky underwater theme and the variety of obstacles to overcome in pursuit of the perfect pitch. There’s also a great iPhone version of the game. The HD version makes amazing use of the iPad’s expansive screen.
That being said, we do wish the wrong notes were a different color, because they look very similar to the correct notes and that can be a bit confusing, especially for new players. We also wish the slide game instructions were a bit clearer. You can control Pluto anywhere on the screen, not just in the slide bar on the side, but we had to play around to figure that out.
Pluto Learns Piano HD is interesting, well made and a lot of fun. It’s not going to teach children about note values or reading time signatures, but it does familiarize them with the piano and many classic songs. And, c’mon, it’s free. If you have a little bit of patience the game won’t cost you a dime, so you have nothing to lose and only cheer to gain by downloading this app.
Pluto Learns Piano HD iPhone app requires iOS 3.2 or later and is compatible with iPhone, iPod touch and iPad. A small expedite fee was paid by the developer to speed up the publication of this review.
The iPhone App Review’s rating: