Thursday, April 25

Review: Theatre Tales [Nintendo Switch eShop]

Reviewing games that are intended for children can be tricky, as obviously when you’re playing them as an adult they’re not meant for you. Educational games then present an additional layer of challenge as their intent and focus is on entertainment second. However, as a parent who has two grown children I believe I’m able to take an objective look at these sorts of games and provide fair criticism.

Theatre Tales provides a means to enjoy classic fairy tales in a semi-interactive fashion with your kids. While currently only the first story, Little Red Riding Hood, is available (I’ve confirmed the other stories that are currently locked are tied to the initial purchase, though I’m not sure of the time frame for the other stories) I was impressed with both the relative variety and simplicity of actions involved. To progress the story you’ll need to click on specific objects, and the game is good about prompting you my moving them if you don’t know what to do next.

In addition to simply clicking on items to grab or manipulate them there are also a few mini games sprinkled in, in this case a pretty simple color-matching game with some flowers. By mixing in some variety of tasks, and having a few silly alternative choices to some of your options, there is some care to this, at least showing some effort to be simple and approachable and yet offering a few surprises as well.

While I can’t comment on the entire package, and it’s a bit of a bummer that I’m unsure of the timetable for when the rest will be available, for its very low price the semi-interactive storybook style of Theatre Tales is pretty nice. While obviously it doesn’t have a load of content and once they know how everything works there’s not much left to discover for younger children who enjoy repetition I could see some elements like putting the Wolf in a silly costume being a consistent source of amusement for them. If you’re looking for a way to help your younger children enjoy the Switch this isn’t a bad option.

Score: 6

  • A very low-budget asking price
  • The semi-interactive nature of the story and variety in actions gives a well-known fairy tale some added life

  • While other stories are promised they’re currently locked and it’s unclear when they’ll become available
  • Obviously outside of the target audience of younger children this likely has very limited appeal