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Platform: Nintendo Wii|Change
Price:$35.79+ $3.99 shipping
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on December 13, 2010
I've never seen such a creative game like this before. You don't play against a computer or somebody else, it's all up to you to figure out the challenges on each level on your own. Plus, it's up to you to create how the background environment looks.

You start out with a tutorial level where you learn the basics of Create. I suggest not skipping the tutorial otherwise you might get completely lost and confused as to what you're suppose to do in the game.

There are about 10 puzzle challenge levels in each floating 'World' with several floating Worlds to play through before reaching the end of the game. In each world you also score points by creatively decorating the world using the given textures, objects, stickers, and tools throughout the game. As you progress, more and more objects and textures and stuff become unlocked. You can also score additional points by doing decorating 'chains', explained in the tutorial, which are very helpful in boosting your score so you can progress to the next world.

If you are familiar with any of the Sims games, imagine the decorating part to be very similar to Sims build mode, adding wallpaper, flooring, and stuff. In Create, you can also add various re-sizable objects such as animals, furniture, trees, stickers, skies, etc, and like I said, unlocking more as you progress through the game. What's really amazing is that you can decorate almost EVERYTHING seen on the screen, including the sky around each world. Even the background music, which is also customizable by clicking on which tune you'd like to hear, offers more and more unlockable choices.

The challenges are puzzles with each level different from the previous. You have to complete some in order to unlock others but not necessarily in any particular order even though they are numbered. In each puzzle, you are given a scenario where you must complete an objective with as few of the specific game object tools provided. Each level tells you exactly what you're objective is, then it's up to you to create the solution. The puzzles get progressively more challenging as they go along. Once you find a solution to each puzzle, you can take a snapshot of what you created, and save it to your Gallery. The snapshots play back more like little video clips than still photos, giving you an opportunity to review the solution you created at a later time.

I'd say this game is more for older kids and adults because the puzzles involve having to think about engineering solutions using some laws of physics. For example: You might be given a scenario where you have to get a small moving truck across gaps and spaces filled with obstacles using a few tools such as attachable balloons that lift objects into the air, spikes to break the balloons so the object falls, fans to blow the balloons that are attached to objects in a certain direction dictated by you, or things like temporary glue to hold the truck in position for timing purposes in order for other objects to catch up to it in order to reach the final objective of what might be -- getting the truck to its final destination on the other side of the screen. You can check how well your 'solution' is or is not working out at any time by clicking on the 'Play' button on the top right of the screen in each level.

In some puzzles you actually have to build a moving contraption from scratch using what parts are offered by the game in order to find the solution. Again, based on the laws of physics such as... how added weight of each part can affect the speed and mobility of whatever contraption you built, timing, wind direction, speed of the moving objects, etc.

You are given a limit to the amount of game object tools you can use in each level, and the fewer you use, the higher your final score will be, which will ultimately affect whether or not it will allow you to progress to the next level. If you don't score high enough, you must find a better solution until you do. With the exception of one level in each world where it is the opposite and you are expected to use as many tools as possible in order to find and complete the solution.

Many of these puzzles are simply mind boggling and can entertain and frustrate even an adult player for hours on end. Highly recommended for brainiac kids who dream of one day attending schools like MIT and for adult 'tinkerers' and puzzlers.

I give it five stars because of its sheer ingenuity, creative aspects, and that it takes a long time to play through each world. Definitely worth the money if you love to create things, have the patience to solve one challenge after another, and the intelligence to do it!

UPDATE: I've spent TWO solid days, over 16 hours total, stuck in World 4, level 8. There are 10 Worlds, 100 levels total. I've been pulling my hair out trying to figure out ANY solution to this level. In this game there are no right or wrong solutions, whatever works to achieve the objective and get the highest score you can in order to move on to the next levels and Worlds is fine. But it DOES get a lot harder as you go along, starting at the 4th World.
If anybody has a solution to that level, please comment on it, I'd really really appreciate it! :)
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on December 12, 2010
I can't believe how much fun I had playing this. I really enjoyed the game once the tutorial was completed. You have to enjoy thinking games, otherwise you will either be annoyed or irate. It is intricate and interesting if you have patience and can think outside the box.
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on March 6, 2011
We have had this game for about a month. It is being played by me (I'm 41) and my two daughters, ages 8 and 10. We all love it! That being said, I can understand why some people hate this game.

It is critically important that you go through the tutorial at the beginning. In fact, I went through it twice, since I didn't quite "get it" the first time through. But, once I got it, wow!

There are almost endless ways to solve each puzzle. Half the fun in our household is to see how each of us comes up with solutions to the puzzles. My daughters often tell me, after I solve a puzzle, that they did it totally differently.

One of the things I love most about this game is that it forces us to use items in ways they were never meant to be used. That might sound simple, but it's actually quite hard to get past the intended purpose of an item and use it for something else. I often feel a bit like McGyver while playing this, for those who get the reference.

Lastly, I want to say that I am NOT good at puzzles. In fact, I usually hate them, because my brain just doesn't think that way. Yes, this IS a puzzle-type game, but not in the typical sense. This is more like throwing things together and seeing what happens.

Tips:
- Go through the tutorial at least once, and do EXACTLY what it tells you to do.
- Press the "Go" button at the beginning of a puzzle to see what happens before you do anything to manipulate it. This is something I do often, because sometimes I just don't get what needs to be done, but seeing it in action will help.
- Watch a puzzle through to the end, which will be one of three things: 1) You win, 2) You lose and a message pops up telling you to try again, or 3) You end up in a situation where you are stuck and nothing further happens, regardless of how long you wait. This is something my children keep reminding me to do. Often I THINK I know what the outcome will be (that I won't win the puzzle) so I end it. But, I have found that watching what happens can help me do better in my next try.
- Ask family members for suggestions if you are truly stuck. You might be amazed by the solutions other people come up with.
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on December 1, 2010
I bought this game for my 12 year old daughter and she enjoys it very much. She likes challenge puzzle type games. This game really gets your kid thinking, they have to use different items to build bridges, etc. She has only had it two weeks, so I am not sure how advanced it gets, but so far she enjoys playing it.
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on January 15, 2012
So, my daughter gets this for Christmas and she starts to play around with it while I'm not around. She stumbles through stuff not really understanding how she got where she went. She's 11 1/2. Then I sit down and start to play a new profile from the start. I follow the tutorial and low and behold completely lost. I'm asking her how she got as far as she did and she said she really didn't understand what she was doing but just kept playing with it. Okay, so I continue. I'm determined to figure out what the heck is going on. After two hours of experimenting, reading the guide and looking online I figured out how to get to level 1! Yes, level 1. Nobody seems to have the "CREATE" stage walk-thru online anywhere. I'm not one that wants to use a walk-thru on a game because that's cheating, however, after hours of being lost I thought it was warranted. Even the makers of the game have a video online explain how easy and fun it is. Of course it is to them! LOL

With every video game I figure there are goals and there certainly were with this one although it doesn't really explain it that well in the guide. You're lost until you get the gist (IMHO). Once we understood the process we enjoyed the game. During play you will be presented with different types of goals. They are either creating your landscape goals (not explained) or accomplishing some puzzles(which are explained). Every time I entered a world I would get the landscaping goals (the icon that appears in the upper left hand corner) accomplished and then start on the puzzles. That seems to work really well.

Once you get going the game makes you think and work on solutions. It's an interesting game. You MUST have patience. No doubt. My daughter currently has a love/hate relationship with this game. She's playing it more than not which I find amusing at this point. It's interesting to hear her work out the problems/experiments out loud. LOL

PROS:

- Inspires creative thinking
- Promotes working out problems
- For the price it gives you hours of entertainment

CONS:

- The remote is shaky and not too precise
- The graphics look a bit dated compared to other games
- Every time you earn a new object it gets put at the end of the list so you're scrolling through everything to finally see/use the new stuff. The new stuff should really be added to the beginning based on how this game works
- The landscape goals should have a better explanation in the guide. It tells you there is an icon in the upper left corner, yes, but we kept trying to click on it. It's just a visual icon telling you what part of the landscape needs work. Duh! Sounds easy but in a world where you click on everything it didn't make sense at first.
- I believe this game is geared for more of a 10+ age group. Definitely not for younger than that unless they are crazy about puzzles and a pretty smart logical thinker.
- The font could be bigger. We have a pretty good sized TV but it was still difficult to read.

Overall, I'm hoping they make a better version of CREATE. I would be interested in seeing how far they can take it. There should be a tutorial "world" that is better explained and walks you through some mock examples while giving you a better explanation of what to expect throughout the game.
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on December 25, 2010
I haven't been able to play this game as much as I would have liked but for the few times I was able to I really enjoyed it. I took it to babysit with me the day I got it and at first the kids thought it would be stupid but then they were begging me to leave it with them and wanted to keep playing.

There is a tutorial that I STRONGLY suggest paying attention to or else it may be hard to figure out what you are doing. Even with watching the tutorial it took a little while for us to figure it out.

The game makes you think and you use your brain to think of creative answers and ways to solve the puzzles. I definitely would recommend this game to older kids and adults.
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on March 24, 2013
In my rich inner life, I am an architect - my son is 8 and I am convinced that he will grow up to be an engineer...... we love this game. It's not flashy or fast paced - but it is BRILLANT and it nurtures creativity and problem solving. If you have a child who is a thinker and who loves to imagine solutions, this is well worth buying. Some of the interfacing in clunky and until you figure out some of the controll tricks it can be frustrating - but it is a perfect one player celebration of individual creativity.
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on June 24, 2012
I wrote a previous review & it wasn't posted. I'm glad. My first review rated this game as horrible. I was having a hard time understanding any of it to be honest.
I decided to sit down alone with it & within about 15 minutes I had mastered the ways to move & what was expected of the puzzles. It's not a simple game. I taught my 7 year old how to play it. He has made it through about 15 levels on his own, but you need to be there with them to offer them suggestions or they may get frustrated. You also need to understand how to work the game yourself if they get "stuck"
This is an excellent game if you are willing to sit with your young child while they play it.
It teaches children how to think through difficult situations & find a solution. We now love this game. We have about 30 Wii games & this is our favorite. Everyone fights over who gets to play it first.
Younger children can just "free play" They can paint the sky, build rockets, cars & things that blow up. You basically build a giant scene & then press a go button. The scene comes to life.
My biggest tip is to follow the initial turorial. It will not let you advance to the levels unless you follow it exactly. I did not do that at first (who needs directions?) & I thought there was something wrong with the game.
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on August 1, 2011
I enjoy this game, but the kiddos aren't super impressed. It's a little too slow for their taste. It's a little difficult for younger children to catch on to how to "place" the objects to get the correct response, but it's a nice challenge for my older children (they actually have to use their brains occasionally, and I think that's wonderful!)
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on September 18, 2011
My son is 8 and really loves this game. I've not played it so my comments are based on second-hand observation but it seems like this game is a engaging and original. There are a series of engineering/physics type puzzles and the environments in which these challenges occur can be modified by the player (animals, various colors and patterns, etc).
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