Fantasy Mosaics 2 and 3--not the best teaching tools
Fantasy Mosaics (FM) are designed for young beginners, but may be inappropriately frustrating for them. This has not stopped me from solving all of them, erasing them, and doing them again.FM is a 4 for people who have a mouse. It's a 2 if you have a keypad because the app reads many right-clicks as left-clicks, which means completed areas can't be x-ed out. Left click sometimes inserts errors for me, but I'm not a keypad expert and this may be my fault.FM 3 is a big improvement over FM 2 because of a fix to the hints and two modes of playing.Fantasy Mosaics (FM)Pros--Large print is good for beginners--maximum puzzle is 15x20--Cursor counts squares --A unique beginner's help is that the numbers corresponding to completed squares are crossed out in order, which makes puzzles much easier to solve. --another beginner's help is that rows/columns are auto-filled in when completed. --the nonograms themselves are creative and artistically interesting--good hints in FM 3--f.lux friendly--can play as blue light is eliminated, making it a good bed-time game for players who want to get sleepy--power-up hint--I suspect would be helpful if I figured out how to use it. Also suspect young players will know how to use it.Cons--grid lines disappear as puzzle is filled in --cursor loses track of count when cursor slips--completed picture disappears too quickly --poor explanation of how to solve puzzles--frustratingly low error limit--must re-start puzzle if hit error limit--in FM 2 it is almost impossible to see hints, which flash randomly and briefly (very nice fix with FM 3).--poor instructions for play Nonogram app designers are beginning to appreciate that these puzzles are intrinsically rewarding and, as they get harder, require trial and error to solve. Thus they are eliminating error limits, error counts, negative consequences for errors, and clocks/timers For Macs, the best examples of nonogram apps designed for instrinsic enjoyment (as of this date) are the Color Cross Collections and Dot By Dot. Color Cross is targeted at younger learners and allows users to make beautiful, multi-colored puzzles. Dot by Dot has a range of puzzles with an emphasis on trial and error (it even includes an eraser). It progresses to the most difficult puzzles I've found in any available for Macs.For the best interactive nonogram teaching modules, see Color It Back and/or Mystery Riddles. Color It Back has an optional detailed training program plus a help function which can be turned on to continue training as users run into difficulty. Mystery Riddles covers the same ground quickly, but each time you reset and replay it, you have to go through the training module again.