Let's Explore the Jungle With Buzzy is a great game simply because it delves into subject matter which most kids love. While Let's Explore the Airport With Buzzy and Let's Explore the Farm are informative, they aren't subjects which most kids are really excited to learn about. The jungle, however, with all of its interesting animals, is a natural choice to build a fun educational resource around.
In the jungle exploring area, you can choose from the Asian, African or South American jungles and check out the myriad plants and animals which live there. Each main jungle screen leads off into three or four subscreens, some of which have subscreens of their own. On each subscreen there are plenty of things to look at and sounds to hear. Clicking on a hot spot will make a gibbon swing around on its branch or cause a monkey to jump out of the bushes and scramble up a tree. Clicking the same spot again will often cause a different response, and in at least one area there is a series of events which occur if you keep clicking: in Africa, clicking on some bushes will bring a monkey out of hiding. It will stand next to a crocodile and hold a stick. Continued clicks will make the monkey poke the crocodile with the stick until the reptile turns and snaps its jaws at the monkey, which makes him run away. Discovering these little treasures is a big part of what makes this package so much fun.
The mini encyclopedia is also very well done. Clicking on the "What is This?" button and then clicking on an animal or plant with the question mark cursor will bring up an encyclopedia entry, which can be read aloud by Buzzy. Some of the words in the entry are also links to other entries, and holding the cursor over a word will make Buzzy read it to you. Finally, clicking on the globe below the animal's picture (no photos, unfortunately) will bring up a globe which highlights the animal's natural habitat.
Beyond the exploring aspect of this package, there is also a game area with different activities. The Trivia section is quite challenging and can be played on one of three difficulty levels, as can the Find It game, which is basically a treasure hunt wherein the player is shown a picture and has to locate it somewhere in one of the jungles. There is also a word scramble game which is enjoyable and a coloring area. They also included a game called Feed the Anteater which consists of clicking on ants going by on a screen to find the player's anteater. Unfortunately, this one is a little too one-dimensional and lacks any real excitement once the player has mastered the ability to click on the slow-moving ants.
Overall, though, this is a great product which is sure to keep kids interested during their "let's read about all these cool animals" phase.
Graphics: Excellent. My only nitpick is that there aren't any photos of the animals and plants.
Sound: The sounds of the jungle are all here in addition to the goofy ones, such as a crocodile smiling and making a silly sound when clicked.
Enjoyment: Kids should really enjoy exploring this CD and playing the games.
Replay Value: There is enough depth in the material that they could explore just the jungles for hours before even getting into the activities.
This game allows children to explore Humongous versions of the South American, African and Southeast Asian jungles, and learn about some of the animal and plant life there. Like "The Airport" and "The Farm" titles, this game features Buzzy the Knowledge Bug as a guide. He reads aloud questions, answers, and the names of objects. In addition, he provides tips and suggestions and points out interesting facts. Kids can explore the three environments, each of which has quite a few locations, where they can click on things for fun animations or instead ask "What Is This?" and go to a micro-encyclopedia for each item which describes the item and shows where they are from. The 210-item encyclopedia also has an index, so kids can jump right to items - clicking on the picture on the page will take you a place where that bug, bird, plant, or animal can be found. The encyclopedia has text, but will also read to the child if they wish - you can have it read each word by just holding the cursor over the word too. The pages also have colored hyper-linked words that are topics of other pages in the encyclopedia.
The game also has 5 mini-games, such as Trivia or Find It (shown game-related images and then have to go find them), or a 15-page coloring book (which can be printed out and has mixable colors) and Jungle Jumble (spelling/unscramble game). The Anteater Feeder mini-game is just for fun, an 100-level arcade version of the old carnival shooting game except the weapon is an anteater's tongue and you eat bugs. These games have difficulty settings, to make things harder or easier.
People who downloaded Let's Explore the Jungle have also downloaded:
Let's Explore the Farm, Let's Explore the Airport, Freddi Fish 2: The Case of the Haunted Schoolhouse, Freddi Fish and the Case of the Missing Kelp Seeds, Freddi Fish 3: The Case of the Stolen Conch Shell, Putt-Putt Saves the Zoo, Putt-Putt Goes to the Moon, Magic School Bus Explores Inside the Earth
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