Oz Wizard iPhone App Review.
Oz Wizard on the iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad is the interactive storybook that tells the famous story of Dorothy, Toto and their three friends, the Scarecrow, the Tin Man and the Cowardly Lion, as they travel to the Wizard of Oz to make their wishes come true. There's no doubt that the story of "The Wonderful Wizard of Oz" has traveled across the world both in book and movie form, and that children all over know of Dorothy and Toto's adventures. The development team from Blue Finger have their own version of this true classic and they're bringing it to your mobile device of choice.
One thing to note is that Oz Wizard tells a shorter story than Baum's original version. The original book has a lot more adventure in it and does provide more insights into the whole story, not to mention the characters themselves as they undergo their own transformations. However, kids 4-6 won't really care about all these insights, so it may prove that the shorter iPhone version is ideal for the kids to learn reading through an interactive story.
There's no point in providing the plot summary of the "Wonderful Wizard of Oz" here, and neither is spoiling the plot of the iPhone version. So let me just say that Oz Wizard has managed to bring out the four-year old in me. The wonderful water color artwork in this book is all hand-made and original. I would imagine the app brings more benefit to children, so I would leave that to all the parents reading this and trying out the app to let me know of how Oz Wizard helped your children.
There are two ways to go through this interactive book. Children can choose to read the story themselves by following the on-screen story and illustrations. The default however is a nice lady reading it to you, as you follow along. The interactive elements in the app are scarce however, and there are no instructions as to how and when they are available. After each small chapter that's read, you can touch the screen and have various things happen, from apples and pairs dropping from the trees, Toto barking or one of the characters saying something. You can also make Dorothy go home at the end of the story by tapping three times on the screen. Although not abundant, kids will surely appreciate these small gimmicks.
Oz Wizard is available in both English and Korean for $1.99, which does seem a bit steep.
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