If you have a car-crazy youngster -- particularly a toddler or young preschooler -- Sago Mini Road Trip puts your kid in the driver's seat to visit friends in far-off places. Kids help Jinja the Cat pack her suitcase, select a car, and then control the speed of the driving as the cat speeds along on a side-scrolling road.
How to Play
Players start by choosing which of three friends to visit and at what location. There are six destinations which include the beach, mountains, a city, and others. With simple tap controls, kids choose items to go in the suitcase, including clothing, sunglasses, and hats. But road-warriors can also pack a birthday cake, a sunflower in a pot, and a goldfish in a bowl!
The car choices include speedy roadsters in red, pink, and yellow; but the more attention-grabbing options are a pickle car, an ice cream truck, a rolling bathtub, train, and a shoe-on-wheels! When on the road, drivers can put their finger on the arrow in the lower right to move the vehicle forward, and then go backwards by switching their finger placement to the lower left. But kids can also use their finger to have the car adhere to it and control its driving, or even flying if they wish.
The road's terrain varies somewhat from trip to trip. Sometimes you go through a tunnel, and other times through knee-deep water. Driving through a giant cupcake results in Jinga getting a face-full of icing. Yum.
Sago Mini Road Trip makes tooling around the landscape easy. It has some of the best driving controls we've seen for toddlers. However, occasionally a car can get stuck when driving over a ramp; so parents might need to show their little ones how to use a finger to pick up a car.
Trips last about two minutes if your child simply drives. However, each trip offers two stops: one for gas and one for washing the vehicle. The latter is a two-step process of using a sponge to clean the car and then squirting slowly dripping water to rinse. A more powerful spray of water would have made this activity more exciting.
While we recommend this app for a first driving adventure, we think Sago Sago missed some learning moments. When kids are packing their suitcases, they can't try anything on. If your child tries to drag the cowboy hat to Jinga, it just falls off the screen. And the possible clothes to pack don't relate to the location you are visiting. Likewise, the background scenery doesn't stay consistent with say, going to the pyramids. You aren't seeing desert terrain until at the very end when you arrive. We also long for different rest stops along the way instead of repeating the same two.
Here's the bottom line, Sago Mini Road Trip would be a nice addition to a toddler's virtual toybox -- particularly for kids who can't get enough of cars. With a parent's help, this app can be a springboard for making up travel stories about the characters in the app.
Sago Mini Road Trip is best for toddlers who love all things that go vroom. While the vehicles change and the road varies a little, these road trips will seem repetitive to older kids.
This Sago Mini Road Trip app review was written by Jinny Gudmundsen.
All tech products are judged on a five star scale by looking at the following factors: fun, education, ease of use, value, and technical.