The book starts with Hagar sitting an Huffaloo Wood, a quite gloomy forest. Harfowls live in trees, and Hagar is the poor guy living in the smallest tree in the whole forest. The other harfowls won’t let him climb up onto their large trees. One day a storm comes and breaks down all the large trees, only Hagars small one survives.
At this point the story becomes interactive: you can chose in which way Hagar should react: he can either help the other homeless Harfowls, or you can click “they got what they deserved”.
In the first storyline Hagar decides to help the other Harfowls by planting new trees. First he gets rejected because it takes a lot of time to grow a tree, but when they come back after a while the trees already blossoming.
The second storyline starts sad: Hagar is alone and then his tree is being from him taken by birds. The birds eventually start to like Hagar, so they bring magical seeds and start magically reforesting the forest.
All in all a simple but lovely story, transporting exemplary morals and values in both storylines.
Playfulness and Interaction
There is no classical page turning in this book, the story develops through vertical scrolling only. That works pretty well and the images are connected nicely. It has a certain feeling of discovery to it.
The largest part of the book is static, only some scenes are slightly animated when you arrive. Additionally to that you can find a total of 17 small animations by tapping on parts of the images. This results in a Harfowl coming out behind or similar small eastereggs.
Unfortunately the entire book is lacking sound. There is no music, sound effects on interactions, or reading voice avaliable.
The video below gives some more insight on how the scrolling works:
Illustration and Mood
The characters are very lovely drawn and you can very well see their current emotional state, which is really cute. Also the vertical scroll and therefore stitched images work fine. Only drawback in our opinion is that the mood in the forrest is quite dark and uncomfortable. It lightens up towards the happy end, which is nice, but it’s still not a feel-good-environment.
Reading modes: only text, no voice
iPad orientation: only Portrait
Duration to read and discover: about 10 minutes
Retina Display optimized (iPad 3): no
Memory used: 36,8 MB
Conclusion and Rating
All in all a very adorable experience. It’s more on the simple side, not a high end production, but the lovely illustrations are more emotionally accessible than some high end renderings. We would have loved to hear some sounds here and there.