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Review CornerSoftware
Pajama Sam 3: You Are What You Eat From Your Head to Your Feet
Rating: four and a half stars
The Bottom Line
Another excellent title in the outstanding Pajama Sam series, PS3 is a real winner. Kids will love this engaging adventure that gets them thinking and solving problems, learning about the importance of a balanced diet, and having fun!
Award of Excellence
Ages: 3-8   Subject: Adventure  Brand: Humongous Entertainment
Review Sections: Product Overview  Entertainment Value  Technically Speaking  Design  Skills Covered  Replayability  Educational Value  Dollar Value
 
 
Pajama Sam 3: You Are What You Eat From Your Head to Your Feet Product Overview
Pajama Sam is back, though this time he is not overcoming his fears, he's helping the inhabitants of Mop Top Island restore order. This magnificent adventure begins with Pajama Sam bent on collecting enough cookie box tops so he can get a special action figure of his favorite hero, Pajama Man. The only thing is, he has eaten far too many cookies, and his mom has informed him that it is almost time for dinner! The dinner-spoiling cookies come to life and roll off into the pantry, so Pajama Sam dons his cape (after players help him find it) and embarks on an adventure that opens his already wide eyes to the importance of nutrition and a balanced diet — not to mention peaceful relations.

Mop Top Island is filled with food-come-to-life, but there are problems brewing in this surreal land that resembles the inside of a human body. The Sweets are threatening to take over and a peace conference has been called to prevent war. Two of the six delegates are in attendance, but where are the other four? Each delegate corresponds to a different food group, and Pajama Sam needs to help find characters such as Chuck Cheddar and Pierre LePain.

Littered throughout the Island are cookie box tops, and players help find 20 of them along the way. Other mini-games and activities include the Powdered Sugar Slopes that involve skiing down the slopes while avoiding rocks and signs, a Bean Counting and Sorting Machine, and Jumbled Jokes in which kids must help unscramble the punch lines to a comedian's jokes. There are more activities to be found throughout the game, but be sure to play the game in different pathways in order to play them all! The adventure can be different the next time around, though the general mission is the same.

Our copy came with an activity book and a Pajama Man comic book too! We always appreciate goodies inside those fair-sized software boxes.

Pajama Sam titles never fail to draw a (mostly) pint-sized crowd around the computer. This series is one of the most engaging and truly spectacular lines of software around. Pajama Sam is so personable that kids easily and readily identify with him — he is curious, a little mischievous, and really quite polite and thoughtful, too.

Though this title is remarkably creative and original, its predecessors were slightly more so. The quality of the artwork is a little lower, and the adventure itself is a bit less challenging than the first two titles in the series. Though I personally find Pajama Sam 2 the best of the bunch, PS3 will not disappoint! It contains loads of visual appeal, delightful imagination, and opportunities for kids to put on their thinking caps without complaint. The nutritional theme is a practical one and helps kids learn the importance of a balanced diet. A secondary message is one about restoring order, negotiating, and making peace.

An important thing to remember is that the younger kids in the suggested age group will love to watch their older siblings play, and perhaps do a few simple things, but will not have the ability nor the follow-through to take on the challenges. This is probably perfect for kids aged 6-10, and even better when there is more than one child involved — two or more heads are better than one. It is an excellent program for teamwork and collaboration.

Technically Speaking
Minimum requirements are Windows 95/98, a Pentium 90 processor , 16 Mb RAM, and 4X CD ROM. Mac users require an 80 MHz PowerPC with 16 Mb RAM, System 7.5.3 or higher, and at least 4X CD ROM.

Skills Covered
problem-solving, awareness of nutrition and the importance of a balanced diet, inductive and deductive reasoning, listening, decision-making, sequencing, memory

Educational Value
It doesn't cover typical curriculum, but it is a wonderful exercise in logic and critical thinking skills. Kids must complete multi-step tasks in order to complete this adventure.

Entertainment Value
A feast for the imagination on all levels, this title will entertain kids like few other programs on the market. The characters are heart-warming and quirky, the story line is fantastic, and Pajama Sam himself is great fun.

Design
It doesn't take long for kids to figure out how to navigate through the program. Pressing F1 will pull up a detailed help screen when kids get really stuck.

Replayability
The objects are randomized so that each game is different. As well, there are different pathways that create more challenges.

Dollar Value
Most parents will agree that the suggested retail price of $25 US is more than worth it.

Released: 2000
Reviewed: May 2000