An a-MAZE-ing App

By Dan Hinckley

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Its not every day that you come across a beautiful iPad app that also brings back the sense of games you played to pass time while a child. Roxie’s a-MAZE-ing Vacation Adventure by OCG Studios is just such an App.

The game is based on a new maze created by Roxie Munro that combines the maze puzzle solving with a “Where’s Waldo” type hunt and search for objects on each page. Finding the objects and exploring the maze in full rewards you with Stars, a way to keep score of how well you’ve done during your adventure.

Roxie_s a-MAZE-ing Vacation Adventure for iPad.jpg

The interface and controls of the game are well done. You start by selecting a car that will be your main transportation through the maze (although you’ll explore parts by foot, boat, and even skis. You select the color of the vehicle for your adventure and quickly get set traveling through your journey.

Children Love It

Any game that appears to be targeted towards children instantly get tested on my 3 and 5 year old children. They both loved this game and finding objects in each panel of the maze. As they travelled through I found them quickly finding objects that were difficult for me to identify. My eyes must be getting old faster than I expected.

The part I love about this game is while its entertaining to the children it includes a level of puzzle solving that keeps my kids thinking. Too many games on the iPad don’t do that and they should.

Graphics

Its amazing to think that the entire graphics for the game were drawn by hand. They’re visually stunning and unique in a way that helps a-MAZE-ing Adventure stand out. The entire design process must have taken weeks and you can tell that each section of the maze includes a very high level of detail and attention. Quality games truly stand out on the iPad.

Hand Drawn.jpg

From the Studio

We were lucky enough to discuss the App with OCG Studios, the developers of the game. Below you’ll find their responses to our questions including details about future projects for iOS devices.

1. How did OCG Studios come about and how did you get into iPad game making?

When the iPad came along we could immediately see the possibilities, the aim we have as a company is do the things we like. This is not always possible but most of the time it is. My 2 children are a huge fan of Roxie Munro’s books and one evening when my daughter and son (5 and 10) where reading/looking at her books the first ideas started to come. I contacted Roxie and so the co-operation started. My original company called OC Graphics is in the architectural 3D presentations business and we do lot of interactive development. So the transition wasn’t that difficult. I wanted to start another company for tablet development, OCG Studios was born.

2. What age range do you target with the creation of this game?
Initially we thought 5 to 10 would be the perfect age, but the testing we done on elementary schools show us that some 4 year old up to 12 years old really like it . But since the app is already a month in the appstore, we know now that a lot of adult really like the maze and the drawings.

3. What was your inspiration for game’s main themes?
Roxie’s books are the main inspiration. This game is build from scratch, Roxie spend almost 3 months on the huge drawing and we 3 months on the development. It is a very clever maze.

We wanted it to be a sort of journey and so the Vacation Adventure was born.

a-MAZE-ing Ski.jpg

4. What was the most challenging aspects of making the games?
The most challenging was the design of the original maze and gameplay, We have a huge drawing divided in 16 screen with almost 400 animated spots in the game. It is an a-maze-ing amount of work.

5. What do you like most about the game?
I like the fact each and every child (or adult) we show it too or who is playing really likes it, within second the knows how it works and keep playing it. My two children where involved in the development from the very beginning, they have played every test version we made and they still like it a lot. The funny thing is they still find new stuff.

6. Tell us about the games you’re currently working on. What can we look forward to?
Currently we are working on a existing book from Roxie Munro which we are adopting for the iPad, this books will be fully interactive but will be more like a book and less a game.

We are working on an update for the Roxie’s a-MAZE-ing Vacation Adventure with a lot of new stuff.
Furthermore we are working on a secret project, but that is in the designing stage at the moment.

Roxie’s a-MAZE-ing Vacation Adventure is available in the iTunes store and is currently priced at just $2.99 (For the next two weeks). A steal for hours of educational, thought provoking, adventures for your children.

The Lite version of the app is also available for Free in the app store.

About Dan Hinckley
Dan Hinckley is an experienced Mac user who converted to Apple products when they introduced them on Intel Processors. He loves helping others get more out of their devices! Subscribe to Maciverse.com to get the latest from Dan and the Maciverse Team!! Find out more about Dan:

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