MathLand – Review
Follow Genre: Educational, Adventure
Developer: Didactoons
Publisher: Artax Games
Platform: Switch
Tested on: Switch

MathLand – Review

Site Score
7.4
Good: Visuals, Concept
Bad: No story, No voice acting
User Score
7.3
(4 votes)
Click to vote
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Rating: 7.3/10 (4 votes cast)

Educational games don’t always hit their mark, and are often poorly designed due to a lack of budget, or having a staff that actually knows how to make interesting games. Nonetheless, these games pop up from time to time, only to be butchered by online critiques. We did have a few great point and click games in the past, such as the Freddi Fish series. Recently we saw some footage of MathLand, which looked like an interesting combination between a small adventure game and a way to teach your kids some calculus. We were most of all curious to see if we were proper mathletes.

Story

In terms of story, there isn’t much to tell about MathLand. We see a dastardly pirate stealing some gems, and then your character arrives at the scene to get all the lost gems back. That’s it. There’s no written narrative, no cutscenes, or anything to properly motivate you to press on to see the conclusion of the game.

Graphics

It’s clear that the budget was limited for creating the game, but if we have to be completely honest, the game doesn’t look half that bad. The graphics may be simple, the colors fall a bit flat and the different sceneries tend to be copy-pasted material of the previous levels. Nonetheless, the protagonist looks cute and relatable for children, the villain looks stereotypical but he does the trick. The overall world is pleasantly designed and doesn’t have too much clutter to distract kids from collecting their coins, evading traps and enemies and of course, do their math. The UI is simple and allows children to properly work with it.

Sound

The music design in MathLand is simply amazing. The soundtrack fits the pirate theme perfectly and you’ll find yourself swaying along with the music. The pirate theme may be repetitive, it doesn’t really get old when playing for longer periods of time. The sound design, however, feels a bit too simplistic and bland for our taste. Children will probably prefer the music, but we find the lack of a proper voice acting cast a bit sad, as it would certainly be more entertaining for a young audience.

Gameplay

MathLand is an educational adventure game in which you’ll have to submit yourself to doing math, in order to progress in the game. You’ll have to plow through different levels, but can only be unlocked with spyglasses. These spyglasses can be earned by solving math problems within a certain timeframe. The more you solve, the more spyglasses you get, and then you’ll be able to unlock more levels. If you wish to play the problem levels that give you more spyglasses, you’ll have to pay coins, which you get from the adventure levels, making the circle go round.

The offset is simple, you can play levels if you do some work first. When you earn your spyglasses, you can play adventurous levels where you have to collect coins, avoid traps and obstacles and reach the treasure chest at the end of the level. Of course, you’ll have to do a few math problems in these levels as well, in order to get the key that unlocks the way to the chest. It’s fun to see that the different math-zones have different puzzles and that the game does get more challenging as you progress. The game also alternates between roaming around on land, and using your boat to cross bodies of water, dodging cannonballs in the progress.

Overall the game is well adapted to who is playing it, as your age is also asked at the beginning. The game doesn’t punish you too hard for getting hurt in levels, as you’ll respawn at the closest checkpoint without losing any actual progress. During the spyglass levels, you’ll get some time subtracted for solving a problem wrongfully, but even then you’ll have levels you can play without having to dock any coins. The latter allows you to get well acquainted with how the levels work, grooming you for the harder levels.

The way math problems work aren’t always the same. Sometimes you get the outcome of the problem, and you’ll make the summation yourself, while at other times you’ll get the problem and you’ll have to solve it. Sometimes the number in the middle is missing, and so on. You’ll have to do additions, subtractions, multiplications, divisions, and equations.

There’s only one big problem with the game, and that’s the game’s length. When the levels are done, there’s hardly any replay value for children, safe for beating the number of spyglasses you can get when solving problems against time. Other than that, you have a few collectibles, but it would have been nice to have some different costumes for your character, or new flags for your boat, etc.

Conclusion

MathLand is one of those rare educational games that is actually done right. The game offers fun gameplay, a fun format of learning and relatable characters for children. While the game itself isn’t that long (for adults especially) it does have some replay value for kids. If you have a child that is struggling with his math homework, this game might help a little.

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 7.3/10 (4 votes cast)
VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: +1 (from 1 vote)
MathLand - Review, 7.3 out of 10 based on 4 ratings
Ibuki


Aspiring ninja.

1 Comment

  1. […] as both worked together on two great educational games. In 2020 we tried to work with numbers in MathLand, which donned a pirate theme to make things more fun, while last month we battle a nasty virus in […]

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