1. cjvitek's Avatar
    Create a Monster HD, by justfun llc.
    $2.99, ****


    • Easy to use interface
    • Lots of design options
    • Fun for kids

    • Lacking some additional settings
    • No picture import

    Create a Monster HD is an iPad app that does exactly what the title says – you get to create a monster. Using a standard section based avatar approach, you get to design a monster from scratch. You choose all the various features – body, eye, nose, mouth, hair, ears, accessories, and get to put them together to form one big, scary (or silly) monster face. The interface is incredibly simple – along the bottom you have the category images (body, nose, eyes, etc) that you can select. Then above those you have the various option – a slide row where you can double tap your selection.

    Once you may a selection, you can then move it about in the main image screen, change its orientation, and alter its size. You even have a tool to create a mirror image (that moves and adjusts as you move the original) which I think it great. No more having to line up eyes manually and just hope they are the same size, orientation, and position. You can also adjust the color, choosing from a variety of color options.

    This app is clearly designed for kids. In addition to include a text based help function, the build in help function also includes a variety of images to show people how to use the various options within the app. This is great – no longer do I need to explain to my daughter how to do everything, or read the instructions to her! Once an image is finished, you can save it. You also have access to the normal various options – email, print, post of facebook, twitter, etc. I didn’t see an option to make an avatar from the monster, but you can save it to your camera roll.

    As filled with features as it is, I found myself wanting more. I wanted the monsters to do something when I finished them – be able to put them on a background, be able to animate them, move them around, or what not. I also wanted to be able to have a free-draw option, or at least create some sort of items to use (create my own crazy hair, for example). Creating your own “stamps” would be something that would elevate this app quite a bit. Lastly, I would have liked to be able to import pictures and “monster-ize” existing images of people (adding a mustache or monster horns to my wifes picture…well, maybe that isn’t such a bright idea). But as a basic “create a monster” image tool for kids, this app is wonderfun.

    All in all, this app was fun. Easy to use, for kids and adults, and lots of features make this something that kids can use creatively and not get tired of after 5 minutes. With as many features as it had, I still found myself wanting a little more – mostly the ability to import existing photos to turn people into monsters. But even without those options that I wanted, I still enjoyed the app, and my daughter and I created some fun, scary, but mostly silly monster faces. At $2.99, the app is a little expansive for what it does, but the quality of the app design and features is apparent. Four out of five stars.

    Rating scale:

    * = No redeeming qualities or features, probably not worth it even if it is free
    ** = Few redeeming qualities, or is simply isn't worth the price
    *** = Some good features but also some clear flaws.
    **** = A solid app, worth the money if interested, a few flaws or problems or slightly overpriced
    ***** = Top of the line app, no problems or drawbacks.

    Price is factored into the ratings. Ratings are lowered if I feel the price of the app outweighs the benefits/enjoyment/features it provides. Likewise, an app that is a good value for the money will have a higher rating. Please comment on these reviews. If you own the app, tell me what your opinion is. If the review prompted you to buy (or not buy) the app, let me know why. If you want more information about the app, go ahead and ask.
    08-04-2011 05:17 PM