Well, this is a lovely way to end 2013: a marvellous “motion adventure book” for iPad called Alph and Betty’s Topsy Turvy World.
It’s the work of developer Electric Circus, whose team have worked on films (Harry Potter, Who Framed Roger Rabbit), TV shows (BBC, Disney, Cartoon Network) and comics (The Beano, The Dandy).
That experience shines through in the app, which was released this week, and which we’ve been playing with this morning. Aimed at 3-8 year-olds, it tells the tale of two rosy-cheeked characters, Alph and Betty.
The app gets kids to explore the pair’s house and garden, collecting objects along the way, while playing dozens of mini-games – all based on letters of the alphabet. Each room acts as a mini platform game in its own right, with animated scenes occasionally appearing to take the story on.
It’s thoroughly charming, with lots of neat touches – including a scoring system that appears as a sum at the top of the screen: when your child gets another point by collecting an item, it shows up as “1 + 13 = 14″ (for example). The music fits in really well too.
Alph and Betty’s Topsy Turvy World costs £1.99 for iPad on Apple’s App Store. We’re hoping to see more from the pair – and their developer – in 2014.