Funky Barn for the Wii U is a fun and interactive farm game for younger kids and is in some respects similar to the once popular and thoroughly enjoyable Farmville on Facebook.
At the start of each game, you are presented a rundown, ramshackle farm which needs a great deal of TLC to make it into a going concern. Fear not, this is not like the ill fated farm left behind in the Grapes of Wrath, the animals are cute and cool (some are even sporting sunglasses) each with its own personality, and the farm machines are more wacky than wacky (but work). The object of the game is to keep expand your farm and make it function productively. It's appeal to smaller kids lies in the animals as they require lots of love and attention. As these young players continue to care for their animals they can order new cuddly animals every 15 minutes. They must also carry out tasks necessary to the running of a farm such as collecting eggs and milking cows. Shearing sheep is great fun when using the funky shearing machine.
The touchscreen of the Wii U interacts with the game well. If your cow needs more love, you can take your stylus and stroke it, if it itches you can scratch it. Fruit can be made to fall from the trees one shake from the handset. Seeds have to be sown, seedlings have to be watered and crops have to be harvested with another inventive machine, the super Haybale-coptor.
Customize your animals.
Watch your bank balance grow as a result of selling crops and using the money to buy more wacky farm equipment such as the egg robot sucker-upper.
Trade with your neighbours.
Since it's based on three actions, collecting, buying, and selling it can get a bit tiresome.
Sounds are a bit monotonous and will get a little tiresome boring.
It's sometimes glitchy.
In terms of the cons, the three actions should keep a child under the age of 8 happy enough and you can always turn down the volume. The glitches can be overcome by the usual cure all of restarting the game. Also, as there is no autosave, you can save manually by pressing the plus sign on the Wii U game pad.
In terms of actually playing the game, the touchscreen is probably the best way to play, but you cannot ignore the handheld controls altogether. As there are only three actions, it's not hard to learn or figure out. There are plenty of forums on line with hints and cheats to guide you through your Funky Barn Experience.
Funky Barn is a single player game. It will keep younger children occupied for a couple of hours, but probably won't hold their attention for much longer than that. With that said and the retail price of Funky Barn being around £29.99. you may not consider it to be a little expensive except for a Christmas gift, but you can rent a copy and in that case it is probably worth a try. Personally I think the cooky machinery alone make it worth the money.