Video Games

DragonBox Elements Review

Dragonbox Elements Splash Educational games have been around almost as long a video games have as a genre, but there still seems to be debate about how much game to include in all this educating. While some developers take the “chocolate covered broccoli approach,” obscuring the teaching moments in as much fun as possible, the makers of geometry game Dragonbox Elements have succeeded in making the teaching moments the fun.

Using Euclid’s Elements as inspiration, Dragonbox Elements teaches the fundamental rules of geometry by establishing those rules as the rules to solving puzzles, which when you think about it, is really all math is. Puzzles, governed by rules. Just like any good video game.

Dragonbox Elements Avatar Creation Before starting, you are prompted to create an avatar. There are four characters to choose from and in addition to giving your character a name you can also choose the difficulty level and whether you are left handed or right handed. This is great for parents with more than one kid playing the game, or a married couple like me and Rick who share one tablet.

Dragonbox Elements Rule Things start out simply enough, with identifying and tracing different shapes. However, from there things start getting more complicated with the addition of rules about angles, lengths and parallels. While the game is designed for children 8 and up, younger children would probably also have fun with the first few levels, although they probably wouldn’t be able to apply what they learn in the game to school lessons yet.

Dragonbox Elements Map The lessons are divided into levels and every twelve lessons there is a new geometric concept added to the puzzles. In this way play progresses up a precarious mountain. Each proof you solve rewards you with little geometric warriors who will aid you in your battle against evil.

Dragonbox Elements Battle Also every twelve lesson are little boss fights where you drag and pitch all the little warriors you created at evil glowy spider things. It’s a great little reward for mastering math concepts and keeps the “game” in educational game well.

Dragonbox Elements Final Level Theorems are introduced as powers and as the levels progress you’ll need to be able to identify which rules apply where and when as well as what powers need to be introduced to reveal new rules. The work is straight up math study, but the puzzles are so well crafted and compelling that you won’t even realize you’re learning, you’ll just want to get to the next level. It’s brilliant for teaching mathematical concepts without the numbers that can often scares kids off math, as well as being a very compelling time waster for those of us who left geometry at school years ago.

Dragonbox Elements is available now on iOS or Android for $2.99 and will be coming to PC and Mac later this fall.

You Might Also Like

10 Comments

  • Reply
    kaycreate
    August 18, 2014 at 10:38 am

    I love games like this. Combining learning and gaming is such a good learning platform! At least for me. 😀

    • Reply
      Mariko
      August 18, 2014 at 10:51 am

      I was actually surprised at how fun this game was. It was really just a great puzzle game, but the puzzles just happened to be teaching geometry principals. I heartily recommend it!

  • Reply
    Megan
    August 18, 2014 at 10:59 am

    This game sounds pretty cool. I love anything that makes learning fun!

    • Reply
      Mariko
      August 18, 2014 at 11:05 am

      It’s very cool and the art is great. I’d be interested to check out their other games too.

  • Reply
    Heather Sander
    August 21, 2014 at 11:36 am

    Dang I gotta stop using the wrong wordpress account. Dx

    • Reply
      Heather Sander
      August 21, 2014 at 11:38 am

      It looks like a really adorable game though, as i said in my other comment that seems to have disappeared now that i changed to my other account. >.> ‘ sorry for the excessive comments.

      • Reply
        Mariko
        August 21, 2014 at 12:07 pm

        I was actually surprised at how much fun I had with it, especially considering it’s an educational game aimed at kid’s. I’d definitely recommend it for anyone who likes puzzle games and is looking for something new.

    • Reply
      Mariko
      August 21, 2014 at 12:06 pm

      No worries. I deleted your other comment for you. 🙂

  • Reply
    Jenn
    August 22, 2014 at 2:06 pm

    I love the art for this game. I’m always looking for new puzzle games to play so I’ll have to keep this one in mind and check it out when it comes to PC. Unfortunately, my phone doesn’t handle games too well.

    • Reply
      Mariko
      August 23, 2014 at 4:28 pm

      That’s too bad. And yes, the art! I can’t believe I forgot to gush about it in my review. The backgrounds and character designs are lovely and detailed.

    Penny for your thoughts...