Product Review of CodeSpells
The game is still in development and was built by two graduate learners, so it lacks the polish of similar games. There will likely be some confusion early on, as the game still needs to scale activities and guide the player a bit more. But as the developers add these features, the game will realize its full potential quickly.
While this game holds a lot of fun possibilities, they won’t be apparent to novices, and learners may be confused or unmotivated. This is especially true because there isn’t much else to do beyond tweaking and trying out spells. As a result, learners will benefit from closer teacher guidance in the first half-hour so they can get oriented and see the game’s possibilities. After this initial orientation and the completion of the prescribed activities, learners can be free to continue with CodeSpells on their own or not. In this way, it can serve as a nice introduction to all learners and then an optional extended learning for those looking to dig deeper. And since it’s a sandbox environment, learners could also be encouraged to break out into small groups to create and then showcase the coolest spells, providing the class with a peer learning opportunity.
Overall User Consensus About the App
This game won’t easily convince kids without an interest in coding, but for the already interested or curious, it could be just what they need. Certain players could be hooked for months.
Curriculum and Instruction
Players finish a few guided challenges at the beginning that just scratch the surface, and then are left to their own devices in a sandbox that’s ready for experimentation.
Developers have yet to add a help menu or tutorial, and they still need to scale the quests a bit to guide players early on. This rating should go up as they develop the product for market.