This post was brought to you by Hasbro, but the images and opinions are my own.
My son loves his iPad. He loves video games. You know what he remembers about our two trips back to Montreal? Playing video games. I am not especially gifted at video-game-playing, although I could get my Sims to make a lot of babies back before I had my own. When Cub is enjoying his screen time, he often requires assistance with his game of choice. I am not much use, particularly with his recent favourite, Minecraft. He watches a lot of YouTube videos of people playing Minecraft (a phenomenon I am sure many parents are as bewildered by as me), so he has a lot of ambitions for things he can do in the game. But he’s only five! And I may be almost thirty years older than him, but that doesn’t make me any more qualified. You know what I can do though? Arts and crafts, man. Arts and crafts. That was always my go-to activity when babysitting. Give me scissors and glue, give me markers … give me a rainbow of Play-Doh!
The folks at Hasbro must have heard my desperate cries when they came up with Play-Doh Touch. Play with Play-Doh in the real world, then bring your creations into the virtual world of your iPad or touchscreen device! Old school meets new school! Cub and I can meet halfway at playtime!
It was super easy to get started with Play-Doh Touch. The app is free to download, and the box contains everything you need to play. You’ve got seven cans of Play-Doh compound, five molds called “Digital Stampers,” six molds called “Action Stampers,” fifteen cookie cutters plus four tools.
To get the game started, you pick one of the five characters (aka “Digital Stampers”) to scan into your world using the Shape to Life Studio (that’s the white, space-ship-looking doohickey). The first character we wanted to make was the sheep.
We placed Sheepy in the centre of the Shape to Life Studio, then held our iPad over top of him, following the on-screen guides to scan him into our Play-Doh world.
And there he was! Squeals of delight and laughter ensued as Cub navigated the screen with his little ovine creation. Next up, you can try one of the “Action Stampers.” These five shapes: a music note, a balloon, a thunder cloud, a beaker and a butterfly, all cause different things to happen to your character. Cub’s favourite is the thundercloud, which makes the character spin up in a sort of tornado.
You can also use the cookie cutters to add different objects into your world with which your characters can interact. Each character creates a different landscape, and the “Action Stampers” create different effects depending on which colour you choose! You can also create completely unique forms and scan them into your world.
Cub started all-day kindergarten in September and on Tuesdays and Thursdays after school, he gets to be “home alone” with me for a couple hours after I pick him up from the bus since his sister is at daycare. The first thing he says off the bus is: “Can we play Play-Doh Touch?!”
Miss Cub is a fan too: but she’s just into the tools and the Play-Doh. This is perfect because I can have both of them playing at the kitchen table at once, with minimal (although inevitable) conflict. As long as you save your game, you can also continue playing Play-Doh Touch on occasions when the Play-Doh isn’t around. Your airline will appreciate you not bringing a bunch of modelling compound on board, and your child will enjoy continuing their on-screen adventures! Cub’s favourite thing about Play-Doh Touch? He says he loves that there are no bad guys and you can’t die. This was shocking to me, since I was under the impression that the threat of annihilation was high up on his list of video game criteria.
If you’re still not convinced, take a look at our very professional demo video! It actually turned out pretty well considering the toddler was also at the table!
Retailing at around $25 with the associated app free to download, I think Play-Doh Touch is a wonderful gift option that really does provide infinite play possibilities both on screen and on the table. Rolling out the dough and using the cutters helps with hand-eye-coordination and fine motor skills. Playing the open-ended game feeds your child’s imagination.