Interest Level: Primary, Intermediate, Young Adult
Devices Used: Samsung Galaxy On5
Platforms Available: Apple, Android
Developer: DreamTheory Development
Party Catch Phrase Free is essentially the popular Catch Phrase game but in an electronic format. There are five categories of clues to choose from—Entertainment, Sports, The World, Everyday Life & Food, and Miscellaneous—and for each game, you can choose just one, all, or a variety of these categories (as well as custom clues if desired). The game is played by a group of people sitting in a circle with team members alternating. The goal is to have your team guess the clue by describing it without using the word(s) itself or anything that rhymes with it. When your team guesses it, you pass the device on to the next player (from the other team), and this process continues until the buzzer rings after one minute. During gameplay, a counter ticks in the background, increasing speed every 20 seconds. Whoever is holding the device when the buzzer rings, the other team is given a point, and you can choose to play up to anywhere between 1 and 15 points. The free version includes ads at the top of the screen, and the ad-free version can be purchased for $0.99. No internet connection necessary to play.
For those wanting to play Catch Phrase but who don’t own it or have it on hand, this is a wonderful alternative. The quantity of clues is impressive, making it possible to play the game several times and for a very long time, and they are well varied in difficulty. Children (and some adults for that matter) may not be familiar with many clues in the entertainment, sports, and world sections, but the miscellaneous and everyday life and food categories contain well-known clues that are certainly understandable. Also, just as in the original game, it’s easy to skip clues as needed. The layout of the app, though easy to navigate, isn’t particularly fancy or appealing. But then again, the app doesn’t really need to be in order to achieve its purpose. This is an excellent party game and a great way for children to practice using words and increase their vocabulary.