Reviewed by: Mary McDonach
Where to Buy: Find Bubbles at the iTunes Store
Developer: Hog Bay Software
Devices: Compatible with iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch
Operating System: Requires iOS 4.0 or later
Categories: Cause & Effect
How it Works
Bubbles is a simply beautiful game.
Your child can create one crystal neon blue bubble by tapping the black background screen. And that could be all he wants to watch; one hypnotically mesmerizing blue bubble "floating" gracefully downward, into oblivion.
Or you could help your child draw his fist across the screen to create a fistful of bubbles!
The slow descent of the bubbles gives your child time to focus on them. Remember, that's all there is on the screen; no distractions, no adverts, no hallelujah chorus or additional drum solo... just you, your child, lots of time, and endless amounts of bubbles.
Using Bubbles like this is not really a game, but more of an engaging and relaxing way to pass time interacting with your child and allowing them the opportunity to become accustomed to tracking objects with their functional vision.
Or you could encourage him to create bubbles, lots and lots of bright, well contrasting bubbles,and then try to touch them again... hear them pop, see them burst and disappear! And the more he creates, the more he can pop!
A whole hand touch will burst many at once; a one finger tap (which is more difficult for many) can be encouraged in an effort to pick up those pesky solo ones getting away.
As I mentioned above, other than the "pop," which is quiet, discrete and lacks the volume to be frightening, there is no sound. This allows parents to include their own soundtracks or leave it quiet for undisturbed, concentrated play.
I think this is a lovely app and it can be as much or as little as you and your child make of it. Above all, there is no pressure, just fun!
At $0.99 Bubbles comes pre-loaded with the bubbles game I describe here and a "Claymation" version. In Claymation, the game is the same, but the bubbles have grotesque-type features and they look unhappy. I didn't like this version as much.
At an additional $0.99 a "pop" (pun intended), you can add on extra versions, such as Dandelions, Disco Balls, Balloons or even holiday inspired Jack-O-Lanterns or Snowmen.
Bubbles in Action
Here's what the app looks like on the iPad: