Parents need to know that Blox 3D City is a block-based, sandbox-style building program from the same publisher as Blox 3D Junior and Blox 3D World Creator.
There’s a brief tutorial animation, a short help section, and some sample files. Still, kids may need help figuring out what to do and how to do it. Younger kids will likely struggle with the settings as well as the perspective of the items.
BLOX 3D CITY Creator is an open-ended block-based building program in the vein of using LEGO bricks or designing in Minecraft. Kids start with a mostly-empty land block, or they can build on a pre-existing city-scape. They have 50 specific items, such as a helipad with helicopter, a train, an ambulance, a number of buildings, roads, train tracks, etc. There are five people (man, female, guy, cop, robber) and a bird. And then there are 20 building block items that can be placed in 12 colors. Kids can also control the environment with day, afternoon, night, rain, snow, or black and white settings. Each city-scape comes with an animation which shows how it was built. When kids save a creation, it automatically uploads to the global collection which appears on their website.
Blox 3D City Creator
Though there are lots of features, finicky controls may make this experience too frustrating for some. Blox 3D City İnventor does offer cool on-screen elements that you can’t get with analog blocks, the best of which may be the animated replay of the building process. This allows kids to watch other people’s builds and learn from them. Many of the objects also automatically animate when positioned on display (the boy runs around, the helicopter lands and then takes off again), which also adds to the fun.
İn the other end of the spectrum, the handles and perspective are annoying. If you make a mistake, there’s no “undo,” requiring kids to double tap on an item to delete it. It’s easy to dual tap in the wrong place, deleting the incorrect item, or adding a new item entirely.
As kids rotate the city, the items in the menu don’t move, but their positioning relative to the user does change. This leaves kids having to think which of the four staircases or two highways will be facing in the correct direction when they may be placed in the town.
There’s also a lack of basic blocks. Kids can add a flag or a windmill, but there is no flat plank piece or bridge (in-game people won’t mix roads without a bridge). For kids who love building games and apps, this might be a nice addition, as long as they have the patience to get the hang of the interface and controls.
Families can talk about building with blocks in real life and Blox 3D City Creator. How can you create the buildings you imagine with a standard setup blocks or bricks?
Families can discuss learning with apps. Do you think this is a good app for learning? Why, or why not? What can you learn?