Little Charley Bear: Toy Box of Fun (Nintendo DS) Review

By Adam Riley 30.03.2013

Review for Little Charley Bear: Toy Box of Fun on Nintendo DS

Quite frustratingly, there are hardly ever any games that quite approach the children's market with the right attitude. Whilst there are indeed good examples of those aiming to teach children in an engaging manner, such as Miffy's World, Lola's Math Train and Learn with the PooYoos, most of the time parents end up buying quickly made cash-ins that lure the uninitiated in with appealing licenses attached.

Little Charley Bear: Toy Box of Fun starts off well, and from the catchy rendition of the theme song from the show that this is based upon it looks positive. Bright-yet-simplistic, a pleasing variety of 15 activities included, spread across three difficulty levels and ranging from simple memory quizzes and reflex trials, through to tile switching, jigsaws and games that put children's attention span to the test. Still looks good so far!

Whilst there are three difficulty levels to mess around with, though, the in-game challenges barely change much and the majority sadly prove to be insulting even to someone at the lower end of the age scale. It would have been great to have the game automatically adjust to cater for player's skill levels. Instead there is not much in terms of differentiation overall.

Screenshot for Little Charley Bear: Toy Box of Fun on Nintendo DS

The idea is that children can "join in the fun with Little Charley Bear and his Toybox friends as they go on exciting adventures and discover new things about the wonderful world around them." However, there is no story progression or special cut-scene action to engage youngsters. What is here is mere repetitive games and activities such as Where is Charley Bear? (Where's Wally, basically), Charley Flies a Kite (use the stylus to dodge birds in the sky and collect both stars and wind swirls), Charley Goes to Space (keep tapping the spaceship at the bottom in various places to blast asteroids), and various others that will sorely disappoint after the first half an hour of play.

With the CBeebies show proving extremely popular since starting at the beginning of 2011, and the narrator voice coming from the likeable British comedian, James Corden, it would have been great to make a proper tie-in that took advantage of the show's settings and themes. Sadly, though, it really feels like a waste of a good license as there is no real expansion related to the goings-on of the TV programme, nor is there much in the way of voiceover work or even varied music to keep youngsters glued to their DS screens. Any parents reading this should be extremely wary of laying down money on this.

Screenshot for Little Charley Bear: Toy Box of Fun on Nintendo DS

Cubed3 Rating

Rated 3 out of 10


Sadly, and this is not being biased against children's games here, Little Charley Bear: Toy Box of Fun shows how little effort goes into many titles aimed at the younger market, merely cobbling together a basic formula that adult developers believe will appeal and then merely slapping an enticing license on the package. Insulting at times, overly frustrating at others; little ones will certainly not be impressed, despite two or three redeeming mini-games featured.









C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  3/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date None   Japan release date None   Australian release date None   


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