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This is such a fun game for kids to learn more about Mayan history and archeology. It’s told through an adventure of trying to save artifacts from treasure thieves.
Disclosure: I received a free copy of this product for review, all opinions are 100% my own.
My children thrive on visual and interactive learning programs so I was thrilled to have the chance to review Dig It Games Mayan Mysteries Online game.
Dig It Games was founded in 2005 by Suzi Wilczynski a former school teacher and archaeologist, who found there was a real lack of materials to teach the importance of archeology to middle school children.
Robert Sharer also a leader with Dig It Games, was an archaeologist and professor of anthropology for over 30 years. He oversaw excavations in Central America and discovered the tomb of an ancient Mayan king in 1993.
I have to say I think Dig It Games has done a wonderful job with their games!
What is Mayan Mysteries?
Mayan Mysteries is an archeology adventure game for grades 5 to 9, where students must track down the looter Ladrone. Professor Alex Quinn is called in to track down Ladrone and his niece Fiona and nephew Charlie are coming along to help!
Ladrone seems to be digging up archeology sites looking for something specific, what could it be? Team Q must solve mysteries to find the mythical city of Ich’aak.
The game starts out in comic book style with a local police officer talking to Professor Alex Quinn about a stolen artifact that had been recovered. He believes it may have a connection to the mythical city of Ich’aak biased on an old family book.
There are so many interesting games along their journey. Players have to dig up and identify artifacts, travel back in time to see how they are used, solve math problems and learn about the Mayan money system and calendar.
Throughout the game are quizzes to see if the student is understanding what they have learned. In the quiz, they are being chased down by thieves and as the question are answered correctly their car moves ahead.
If they are wrong the thief starts to catch up!
When you first login you are taken to the Portal area. Here you can view the game high scores, your achievements and see what artifacts you have found.
After clicking on launch game, you’re taken to another screen where you can choose to continue your last game or start a new game.
One area of the game is exploring a map of Central America. When you click on an area it will tell you about that location. Then you enter it to explore a dig site.
As you explore areas people will have information to share with you. You can tell by the red “!” over their heads.
After clicking on the red “!” a book opens to share the information this person has. In the text are linked words to follow and learn more about each topic. After reading the information you move into an interactive game or puzzle.
What our 11-year-old daughter thought of the game.
When I first saw it I thought it was really cool because I really like reading and quizzes. My favourite part is when you get to dig up artifacts and answering the quizzes.
What I thought of Mayan Mysteries
I find children learn very well through interactive play. I love historical games and when I was younger this is exactly the type of game I would have loved to play!
This game teaches a lot about the history and culture of the Mayan people. There is a lot of reading in this game!
Our oldest daughter has a hard time reading off a computer screen because of the size of the text and screen glare. One thing I love about Mayan Mysteries is that there is an audio option to have the text read to the student.
However, my daughter didn’t see the little speaker symbol on the bottom left hand of the book until I noticed it. Because of this, she wasn’t moving along through the game at the speed she would have liked.
I wish the speaker icon was a little more visible, perhaps placed at the top of the page so you can see it easily when you start to read.
One thing to be aware of with Mayan Mysteries is that there is time travel involved in the game. To me, this is not a big deal just part of sci-fi. However, the way Mayan Mysteries does their time travel is through Mayan spirit guides.
This is not something that fits in with our family beliefs. However, spirit guides are something the Mayan people believed in and many other cultures. Since we have already been studying Native cultures it’s something our children are familiar with and was just another teaching moment for our family.
I loved that the game is non-violent and has no graphic content. The information presented is interesting and the games are challenging, the kids have to think! Ok so does momma when they needed help.
However, I was surprised that at the end of the game you don’t actually solve the mystery! Instead, you have to wait for the sequel to come out to complete the game. While we are looking forward to the next game, I wish this was a little more upfront since the main focus of the game is solving the mystery!
Mayan Mysteries is suggested for grades 5 to 9, but, our grade 3 daughter also loves this game! Although the game is a single user license when one child is done playing you can start a new game fresh for another child to play.
Overall we’ve really enjoyed playing Mayan Mysteries and I have a feeling I’ll have to pick up their other game a Roman Town too!