App Name: Think Fast!
Capabilities: iOS and Google Play (Android)
Subject(s): Social Studies
Grade Level: 9-12
Description: Test your knowledge of early US history and help your character accomplish their mission. There are two characters from different periods in US history the user can choose from and all questions will center around that period. Royce is from 1770 (American Independence Era) and all of his questions center around the foundation of the United States. In order to reach the end of the ‘mission’, the user has to answer 10 multiple choice questions correctly. For the mission to be successful, this must be done in under 5 minutes. Lucy is from 1850 and her questions focus on slavery. As with Royce, the user has to answer 10 questions in 5 minutes but Lucy’s questions are True/False. For both missions, the user is provided with a short but detailed explanation of the answer to each question. The game automatically pauses once a question is answered so the user can read the information provided at their leisure. As each question is answered correctly, the characters also ‘move’ through a map of major landmarks of the time.
FUTD’s Rating: 3 / 5 stars
This app is fun, graphically appealing, and it gets users thinking. However, it pales in comparison to their online program. The missions are a good way to get the user engaged with the task and the timer adds an additional challenge. Character movement along a map helps the user feel like they are progressing and the information the app provides is detailed and accurate. Despite these strengths, the app does not meet its full potential. Many of the questions require more obscure knowledge than what would be covered in a typical class. It is still good information to know and pushes the user to think, but it can quickly become frustrating. Another frustrating element is that even though the user reaches the ‘end’ if they are able to answer 10 questions correctly in the given time period, they will still fail their mission if they answered a question incorrectly. If a student makes it through the entire task, I would want them to feel like they have succeeded. In both regards, Lucy’s mission is better Royce’s. Finally, each ‘stop’ the character makes on the map carries importance and while its cool to see them show up on the screen, no further information is provided. I would have liked an option to click on the image and receive more information about the landmark and its importance. Ultimately, each mission is good a fun for a couple of playthroughs, but it is not an app for consistent or long-term use.