Toca Mini review: Kids can make cute digital people
Toca Mini, like many Toca Boca apps, gives you the chance to create your own little 3D person, or ‘mini’. It has the layout like designing a new doll, giving it packaging to add to the effect. The pattern on the inside of the box can give you inspiration and ideas too, with themed patterns which you can base your mini’s look on: for example a background of waves for a mermaid or a sea captain. The potential for creativity is (almost) limitless.
The actual designing is slightly limited, but very creative. There are many mouth, noses, eyes, and eyebrow designs to choose from to customise your mini, but it does not have the option of adding 3D objects such as sticking-out ears or eyes on stalks. There is also a limit of two eyes, two eyebrows, one mouth and a nose, and you can only put them on the head.
Personally, I would prefer it if the features weren't limited and gave you the choice to place them any where, as this is a creative game.
To color the skin you have to drag your finger over, where you're able to use as many colors as you want.
Toca Mini lets you rotate your character around 360 degrees to let you look around your mini, and add details with shapes and markings in a variety of color tones sizes. There are many different styles of shapes to design with, including some familiar outlines such as spider webs, suns, and leaves. I like the way that the facial features are animated, and the mini moves and throws out poses when you're not designing—giving it a personality that can work with any design.
Overall I like the style of Toca Mini, giving older kids a chance to do more advanced designing, but not too complicated. I think this game is more for young, imaginative thinkers, who like to redesign one shape again and again.
Compared to other Toca Boca apps (which are largely for pre-schoolers), I would say this is for older children: kids who can understand how to change the colors, and have it look the way they imagine it. For these, Toca Mini is a lot of fun.