The Land of Me is a fabulous computer game for children that is in essence like having a series of books in which you can decide what happens next, realising cause and effect and having a whole lot of fun along the way.
It is highly praised by Local Education Authority advisors.
There are 6 chapters, each covering different topics that are educational and mind expanding, giving the scope that is contained therein for children to use their imagination, choose different options and see the visual effects of their own choices.
It’s very exciting watching them see ‘their’ choices unfold, the cause and effect of how they look, sound and some surprises along the way.
The program starts with a picture of a leather bound book that opens its pages flicking past the map of the Land of Me and the table of contents, taking you to a place named ‘Bramble Wood’ where Buddy Boo (a bear), Eric (a raccoon) and Willow (an owl) are sleeping – along with Olive, a sleeping tortoise.
When you select one of the 6 chapters from the buttons below, the characters awaken and make their way to the destination of your choice. Olive remains behind and only awakens when you select the final chapter, Story Time – when she awakens and is the story teller.
Chapter 1: Shape, Size & Colour
Takes Buddy Boo, Eric and Willow to the Hot Springs with Yama-San and the snow monkeys. Yama-San asks the characters who wants to pretend and play and when you select which character, he asks them what they want to be, what size and what colour. e.g. Buddy Boo the bear wants to be a vehicle and you get to decide if this vehicle will travel by land, by water or by air; then choose the size & colour. You then watch him transform in his imagination, with buttons to click changing your original choices through the words displayed at the top of the screen.
Your choices effect how the vehicle appears and can be changed throughout the game. Each of the main characters wants to be something different: a vehicle, a monster and an animal.
You can at any time return to Bramble Wood or choose additional activities in ‘Things To Do’ (with printing, cutting and pasting).
This chapter is available to download free of charge from the website: Made in Me
The other chapters in brief (you have to go and look now and see for yourself)
Chapter 2: The World Outside
Takes Buddy Boo, Eric and Willow to the Cliff Tops of the Mountains to where Mr Rigby, the eagle is waiting.
Chapter 3: Making Things
Takes the characters to the Desert Plains of Me to where Anthony the Anteater is waiting.
Chapter 4: Rhythm & Dance
Takes the characters to the Loch with Mrs Dodo the otter and her children.
Chapter 5: Songs & Rhymes
Perhaps K’Boos favourite is the adventure with Bernard the Crocodile, down by the River Bank. Be careful, you’ll be singing them all day long!
Chapter 6: Story Time
Wakes up Granny Olive, who takes you into the cave at Bramble Wood to tell you a story.
All of the chapters have their own additional activities in ‘Things to Do’ (over 100 in all) with masks, maps, finger puppets, song sheets, etc. to discover, download and continue the adventures.
So what did K’Boo and the HonieHouse think?
The Land of Me is a massive hit here in the HonieHouse. I have at times, struggled to get any work done, with K’Boo over my shoulder wanting to see Buddy Boo, Eric and Willow in the ‘Story Book’ as she calls it. She is a pre-schooler at just 4 years old and it caught me by surprise just how much she could understanding, watching her wide-eyed fascination as she plunged into each chapter eager to discover.
The scenes are very well animated and the voices are so unique and full of character. The background tune in Bramble Wood is so lovely and calming and the sounds change as you move through the chapters, matching the scene set. Obviously there are some very catchy tunes in chapters 4 & 5.
K’Boo has enjoyed some of the ‘Things to Do’ activities (given that there are over 100, there is plenty of scope for new ideas) and after making the finger puppets in chapter 1, she wore them, while at the Hot Springs with Yama-San.
I would wholeheartedly recommend this game to families with children from 2 years, as it can be used with assistance at first and then as your child becomes more familiar with the keyboard (not much to remember) they can play with a little assistance at first and then by ‘all by themselves’. I challenge you to move away though, as watching your child develop in this way is just too lovely an opportunity to miss.
Take a look at the website, download the first chapter for free, contact the Made in Me Team if you have any questions and then as you realise the benefits and the potential of this game – order the entire set! Given that each chapter is the price of a book and the enjoyment and potential for expanded use is far greater – you have bagged a bargain and enabled your child to learn through play, make choices and get very valuable IT skills!