Toca Robot Lab

Toca Robot Lab is a great app for technically minded kids (or anyone who thinks robots are way cool!)  The way the app works is that you build a robot using one of three pieces each for legs, torso, head, and arms.  Then, you test the robot by flying it around the lab collecting stars until a conveyer takes it away to be approved.

The app has great sound effects—screwing and welding noises when the parts are being attached, sputtering flying noises when the robots fly, and satisfying clanks when it gets taken off on the conveyor belt.  The background music is non-intrusive and doesn’t make you want to stab an ice pick in your ear, so that’s a big plus.

There weren’t any glitches during use.  There were enough obstacles in the lab to make flying interesting, and children caught on to what they needed to do to make the robot fly around obstacles very quickly.  The robot parts had enough “wear” on them to make them look like recycled bits, and were satisfyingly interesting to look at, with things that looked like old computer screens, astronaut helmets, pinwheels, old hoses, etc.

There are some free robot lab apps out there, but the in-app purchases can quickly become irritating. Toca Robot Lab was well worth the price at $2.99.