Moving Christmas (iOS) Review
- Nice illustrations
- Well produced
Not so much?
- "Environmentally-Aware" story line might upset some parents
- Not very interactive
In this eco-aware children’s storybook app, pollution has caused the north pole to melt, and it’s up to Frank Duffy to help move Santa’s operation to the south pole in order to save Christmas.
Moving Christmas is a Christmas-themed, interactive storybook application for children. It is probably the first holiday book I’ve read that carries with it an eco-aware story line.
You see, there is a problem this Christmas. A REALLY big problem. Global warming and pollution has caused some dramatic temperature changes, which have started melting the snow and ice in the north pole. Conveniently, a massive fault-line runs right through Santa’s workshop causing massive damage and everything is destroyed! Christmas is ruined!
Thankfully, that’s not quite the case!
After explaining pollution and its effects on the environment to his elves, Santa declares that Christmas will continue, but the only place that has enough ice to continue his operation is the South Pole! “We’re going to have to move! At least until the north pole stops melting,” says Santa. Hence, the title of the app: Moving Christmas.
In order to get to the South Pole, Santa is going to need a lot of help. Thankfully, Frank Duffy, environmental activist and friendly mover, who bends over backwards for his clients, is asked to help with the enormous task of moving Santa’s workshop to the south pole. Can he do it in time to save Christmas? Can the north pole be saved?
The illustrations were done by Max Miceli and are really nice looking! Miceli has worked as an illustrator for Nickelodeon and Disney. The narrator, music, and sound effects are also nice. All together, Moving Christmas feels well produced.
Each page typically has some sort of animation, and while it is an interactive storybook, it’s quite a bit less so than other storybook apps that I’ve reviewed for Games Fiends. In Moving Christmas, the items you can interact with will have sparkles around them, but after awhile the visual indicators disappear and you’re left tapping everything on-screen until you find a pop-up. The kids are pretty fast at spotting them, but us old timers who focus on the story might be left hen pecking at the screen like the confused adults we are.
On certain pages, a recycle logo will appear in the upper-right corner of the screen. Tapping it will present the reader with environmental facts.
I thought the story was cute and the my kids, ages 5 and 3, liked it as well.
More politically-opinionated parents may take issue with the underlying and environmentally-aware story line. It didn’t bother me, per se, but I was definitely caught off guard by heavily-pro environment themes, mainly because I wasn’t expecting it. I was just expecting it to be a cute Christmas tale for the kids, and I’m sure I did a double-take when the Santa’s workshop was destroyed and pollution and global warming was the culprit, while using the app with the kids.
So, be aware: this is a Christmas tale with a message about the environment.
Moving Christmas is available for $2.99, and only works on the iPad 2 and above. It looked really nice on the retina screen of my 3rd-generation iPad.