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spacer all reviews > > > science

Mia 2 Romaine's New Hat

Kutoka Kids

ages 5 to 11

Rating Scale
5 = great,    1 = poor
Educational Value
3.0
Kid Appeal
4.0
Ease of Use
4.0

Mia2 Screen Shot System Requirements

PC / Mac Price Survey

Product Support

This animated tale of Mia the mouse begins with her being washed down a drainspout during a sudden storm. She loses her mother's new hat which she had been playing without permission. Her hat is swept down the sewer and found by the evil rat Romaine and his cousins. Players help Mia find her way home as she discovers hidden adventures along the way. By answering questions to various games and being observant and resourceful, Mia earns Sparklies to help her replace her mother's hat.

Romaine's New Hat is filled with amusing characters Mia encounters in her explorations. Each provides the setting for one of eight different activities. For example, at Freddy's sundial, weather and solar system games are played; Simon the Scientist quizzes players on plant parts; and Mr. Icon focuses on energy, forces and matter concepts.

Four different levels of play allow children to tailor the program to their abilities. The background music is optional and the games can be played by themselves without having to explore Mia's neighborhood.

Educational Value
Romaine's New Hat introduces the younger set to very basic concepts involved in heat, energy, forces, plants, animals, electricity, magnetism, the solar system, and earth science. Much of this is done by recognizing patterns in nature and science and reinforced with a variety of fun repetitive games - arcade, matching, card, etc. This is not a program that offers in-depth explanations.

Kid Appeal
The animated graphics in Romaine's New Hat are extremely engaging. Much attention has been given to creating engaging characters who will appeal to both girls and boys because of their playfully independent mannerisms and humor. Younger kids enjoy matching games, squirting slime at objects, clicking the mouse on bright gleaming objects, and skateboard manuvering. The program moves slowly enough for youngsters to navigate but perhaps a little too slowly for many 10 and 11 year olds who can handle a little more technical and scientific information. One 10 year old found it fun but awfully slow moving for his tastes.

Ease of Use / Install
Romaine's New Hat installed easily on our Windows 98, Pentium II test machine. Younger children may find it awkward to switch back and forth between the 2 disks when playing the various games. The instruction booklet is fairly complete and really does help in guiding players through the program's nuances. Make sure you keep the short cut command buttons instructions close by for easy reference. We kept forgetting to press F3 to save the game and had to start Mia's adventures from the beginning which was a little tedious (especially after you've done it a few times).

Best for... / Bottom-Line
This game is recommended for the very young. Children older than 10 may not have the patience to explore with Mia. This program is easy enough and moves at a slow enough pace for most younger children to enjoy without having to be guided by an adult after the first few times.

See SuperKids' comparisons with other Science software titles, and the Buyers Guide for current market prices of the PC and Mac versions of this program.

System Requirements
PC: Windows 95 or later, Pentium 166 or faster, 40 MB hard drive space, 32 MB RAM , 640 x 480 x 256 color display, 6x CD-ROM drive, SoundBlaster compatible sound card .

Mac: System 8.1 or later, PowerPC 275mhz, G3 233 mhz, iMac, or faster cpu, 40 MB hard drive space, 32 MB RAM , 640 x 480 x 256 color display, 6x CD-ROM drive.

Reviewed on:

  • PentiumII-400 with 64MB and 12XCD
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