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I Spy Castle Nintendo DS Review

My kids love to play brain teasers in the car like I Spy or 20 questions so when I was asked to review I Spy Castle for the Nintendo DS by Scholastic I jumped at the chance.

I Spy Castle for Nintendo DS offers 36 I Spy riddles set against 12 castles scenes where you need to find over 400 items. Reveal 12 mini games hidden among I Spy riddles and play three logic puzzles to unlock additional new rooms of the castle and new I Spy riddles.

Shae was super excited to play I Spy Castle and did require some help from Sabreena but Shae is only four but did really really well for her age. Shae is easily bored but played I Spy Castle for well over an hour and enjoyed every minute of it. After Shae played the game Melinda took a turn and enjoyed playing the game so much she took the game with her when she went to Shaun’s Cub Scout meeting and played it for almost an hour herself. From what I can tell this is a game that will challenge your brain but won’t bore you easily which is something my kids need.

I feel brain teaser games keep your mind sharp as well as help younger kids think more than they might under normal circumstances. I Spy Castle is a game that will not only make you think but will also provide entertainment which only makes the game more enjoyable to play.

I Spy Castle for Nintendo DS is available at most major retailers and sells for a suggested retail price of $19.99.

I Disclose

Nintendo 3DS Specs – Coming on 03/27/2011

Nintendo plans on launching its 3DS, the handheld video game system featuring 3-D technology with no glasses on March 27, 2011.  Thirty games will be available for the 3DS between the device’s launch and this June’s Electronic Entertainment Expo, the company says.

Shaun’s birthday is 3/31 and I think this would be a really cool gift for hime but I am having a hard time with the $249.99 price tag.  It seems like a lot of money for his age but probably worth it for the technology.

Below is a ton of information on the 3DS.

Nintendo 3DS Hardware Specs

Launch Date March 27, 2011

Price $249.99 MSRP*

Included in Hardware:    The following is included in the hardware set:

  • Nintendo 3DS system
  • Nintendo 3DS charging cradle
  • Nintendo 3DS AC adapter
  • Nintendo 3DS stylus
  • SD Memory Card (2GB)
  • AR Card(s) (view the cards using the outer cameras to play supported AR games)
  • Quick-Start Guide
  • Operations Manual (including warranty)

Characteristic Features:

  • 3D screen, enabling 3D view without the need for special glasses and the ability to adjust or turn off 3D effect with the 3D Depth Slider.
  • Stereo cameras that enable users to take 3D photos that can be viewed instantly on the 3D screen.
  • New input interfaces including the Circle Pad, motion sensor, gyro sensor SpotPass, a feature that lets Nintendo 3DS detect wireless hotspots or wireless LAN access points and obtain information, game data, free software, videos and so on for players even when the system is in sleep mode.**
  • StreetPass, a feature that lets Nintendo 3DS exchange data automatically with other Nintendo 3DS systems within range, even in sleep mode once this feature is activated by the user. Data for multiple games can be exchanged simultaneously.
  • Convenient features that users can access without stopping game play such as the HOME menu, Internet Brower, Notifications, etc.
  • Plenty of built-in software such as the Nintendo 3DS Camera, Nintendo 3DS Sound, Mii Maker, StreetPass, Mii Plaza, AR Games, Activity Log, Face Raiders, etc.
  • Nintendo eShop where users can view trailers, software rankings and purchase software.
  • System Transfer which enable users to transfer already purchased software from one Nintendo 3DS system to another. DSiWare purchased for the Nintendo DSi or the Nintendo DSi XL can also be transferred into a Nintendo 3DS system.***
  • Compatibility functions where both new software designed for Nintendo 3DS and most software for the Nintendo DS family of systems can be played.
  • Parental Controls which enable parents to restrict game content by ratings as well as use of specific wireless connectivity, 3D functionality, etc.****

Size (when closed):   2.9 inches high, 5.3 inches long, 0.8 inches deep.

Weight:   Approximately 8 ounces (including battery pack, stylus, SD memory card).

Upper Screen:   Wide-screen LCD display, enabling 3D view without the need for special glasses. Capable of displaying approximately 16.77 million colors. 3.53 inches display (3.02 inches wide, 1.81 inches high) with 800 x 240 pixel resolution. 400 pixels are allocated to each eye to enable 3D viewing.

Lower Screen:   LCD with a touch screen capable of displaying 16.77 million colors. 3.02 inches (2.42 inches wide, 1.81 inches high) with 320 x 240 pixel resolution.

Cameras:   One inner camera and two outer cameras. Resolutions are 640 x 480 for each camera. Lens are single focus and uses the CMOS capture element. The active pixel count is approximately 300,000 pixels.

Wireless Communication:   2.4 GHz. Enabling local wireless communication among multiple Nintendo 3DS systems for game play and StreetPass. Enabling access to the Internet through wireless LAN access points (supports IEEE802.11 b/g with the WPA™/WPA2™ security feature). Recommended distance of wireless communication is within 98.4 feet. This can be shorter depending on the enviromental situation. WPA and WPA2 are marks of the Wi-Fi Alliance. Input Controls Input controls are the following: A/B/X/Y Button, +Control Pad, L/R Button, START/SELECT Circle Pad (enabling 360-degree analog input) Touch screen Embedded microphone Camera Motion sensor Gyro sensor

Other Input Controls:   Other input controls are the following:

  • 3D Depth Slider (enabling smooth adjustment of the 3D level effect)
  • HOME (HOME button brings up the HOME menu)
  • Wireless switch (can disable wireless functionality even during game play)
  • POWER button

Connector: Connector includes:

  • Game Card slot
  • SD Card slot
  • Cradle connector
  • AC adapter connector
  • Audio jack (stereo output)

Sound:   Stereo speakers positioned to the left and right of the top screen (supports virtual surround sound).

Stylus:  Telescoping stylus (approximately 3.94 inches when fully extended).

Electric Power:  AC adaptor (WAP-002 [USA]). Nintendo 3DS Battery Pack (lithium ion battery) [CTR-003].

Charge Time: About 3.5 hours

Battery Duration:  When playing Nintendo 3DS software about 3-5 hours. When playing Nintendo DS software about 5-8 hours. Battery duration differs depending on the brightness setting of the screen. The information regarding battery duration is a rough standard. It can be shorter depending on what functions of the Nintendo 3DS system are used.

Game Card:  Nintendo 3DS Game Card. The size is approximately the same as Nintendo DS Game Card.

This is NOT a sponsored post but the opinions and descriptions presented belong solely to LookWhatMomFound…and Dad too! Your experiences and reactions may differ from ours.

Do You Understand Video Game Rating?

We have a Wii, Xbox and DS and we are always having discussions on game ratings and what we feel is appropriate for Shaun to play.  A few weeks ago I had the pleasure to speak with Entertainment Software Rating Board President Patricia Vance and GameStop video game expert Mike Dzura.  We spoke about game rating and where you could go if you needed more information.  We also touched on GameStop and how they have 2,500 games under $20 for this holiday season.  So if you have a little gamer on your holiday list this season check out my video interview.

This is a sponsored post but the opinions and descriptions presented belong solely to LookWhatMomFound…and Dad too! Your experiences and reactions may differ from ours.

Checkout Nintendo’s Awesome Red Holiday Bundles – Limited Time!

On November 7th Nintendo released the Limited Edition Red Nintendo DSi XL and the Limited Edition Red Wii™ Console system bundles to celebrate Super Mario Bros 25th anniversary.

Limited Edition Red Wii Console (MSRP $199.99)

What’s Included:

• Red Wii™ console
• New Super Mario Bros.™ Wii game disc
• Wii Sports™ game disc
• Red Wii Remote™ Plus controller
• Red Nunchuk™ controller

Limited Edition Red Nintendo DSi XL system (MSRP $179.99)

What’s Included:

• Red Nintendo DSi XL system featuring special artwork
• Mario Kart™ DS video game
• 3 pre-installed titles, plus built-in software
• A large stylus tailor-made for easy use

This is a Press Post that was provided by Nintendo.

Pokémon HeartGold and SoulSilver Review

Shaun loves his DS and plays it daily so needless to say he was pretty excited when we received Pokémon HeartGold and SoulSilver for review.
Pokémon HeartGold and SoulSilver Version returns you to the scenic Johto region first introduced in the beloved original Pokémon Gold and Pokémon Silver games nearly a decade ago.  They have been enhanced for the Nintendo DS and Nintendo DSI with enhanced graphics and sound and now include a new touch screen feature as well as a ton of other surprises.  To be honest with you I know nothing about Pokémon but from watching Shaun play and react it looks like he does and it looks like he is happy with the new game play and features.


Another new feature of the Pokémon HeartGold and SoulSilver games are the brand-new Pokéwalker.  The Pokéwalker is a pedometer that you carry with you that lets you take Pokémon fun whereever you go.  You are able to transfer a Pokémon onto your Pokéwalker using an infrared connection between the Pokéwalker and your game card.  As you walk around with your Pokéwalker it will allow you to earn experience points  to gain a level.  The Pokéwalker has a clip to hook it on your belt, and a hole for attaching a strap so you can take it with us while on the go.  The Pokéwalker adds a whole new dimension of gaming allowing it to never get dull or boring.
Shaun has been playing Pokémon for a few years now and is really enjoying the Pokémon HeartGold and SoulSilver games.  If you are new to Pokémon or an old time player you need to check out these two games.    
This is a sponsored post but the opinions and descriptions presented belong solely to LookWhatMomFound…and Dad too! Your experiences and reactions may differ from ours.