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ZX Spectrum 48K

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Rosetta McLeod
Chris Bourne

This electronics sums game is, I suppose, an attempt to make arithmetic more enjoyable, but it really is not too far removed from the drill and practice routines which no longer assume such an important role in the school curriculum. This package makes the mistake of trying to be all things to all people we are told that it is 'a superb mental arithmetic challenge for all ages ' , that there is ' a vast amount of game settings', and that there are over 2,000 possible options'. Admittedly, the program is extremely flexible, but all it is doing is giving practice in using two numbers to create a third for no obvious reason.

In the first game, Sunflower the player has to answer the sums correctly so that the sunflower will grow. If the correct answer is input, a bird flies off and the player is rewarded with a 'Well done'. If the player answers incorrectly the deadly weevil moves closer to the sunflower. The next game uses a similar format, except this time the right answer causes a shower cloud to move across the sky to a point where it Waters the roses. In spite of the number of options available, this is really a very limited kind of program since it can only be used with one child at a time in order to reinforce work which has already been taught. Neither is the aim of the game sufficiently exciting or interesting to motivate children to produce the correct answers, or strong enough to hold their attention for very long. As an attempt to make sums more enjoyable, I' m afraid the program is a dismal failure.


Control keys
Use of colour: quite effective
Graphics: dull and uninspired
General Rating: This program fails to make use of the potential of the micro as a teaching aid, and does not help the player towards a concept of number.

Not Rated