Leappad Ultra – Changing my mind


We have always had a leappad console in our house ever since Elizabeth was old enough to use one. We got the Leappad Explorer and the Leapster GS and five games which can be used on both consoles.

We love Mr Pencil as it is fun for the kids but is also educational. In fact they are all educational in their own way which is something I have always liked about the Leapfrog games.

When we were sent the Leappad Ultra earlier this week I was very happy to see that we could use our current games with it too.


Size comparison of the Leappad Explorer (left) and the Leappad Ultra (right)

The Leappad explorer has always had some bad points, the need for batteries, the battery covers falling off, the cheap plastic feel to the case. It has always felt like a toy and not like a decent piece of technology. The Leappad Ultra is so much better. It feels like a very well protected tablet, the screen is bigger and had better resolution and colour depth, the wifi is brilliant and allows you to download games without connecting it to your computer which always drove me mad. The rechargeable battery pack has to be the best bit though. Alison has already used it so much that it has been charged three times.

We were sent the Leappad Ultra with a Doc McStuffin game and a £15 voucher for the app store, I added in a £15 voucher that I had from a recent event goody bag and logged onto the app store through the Leappad Ultra to see
the different types of apps available. The app store includes apps from £2, with lots for apps available for £3.50, £5, £7.50, £15 and £20. There are 10 apps included on the Leappad Ultra and an 11th app that you can download from a choice of three. When looking around at the apps I wanted to choose a variety  of different app types and this was really easy to do as the site makes it obvious what sort of app each one is. There are also trailers for some of the apps in the app store which help you choose which apps to buy.

Games – There are lots of games and apps available and the playability varies between each game. There are lots of licensed games and earning games. Using lots of different skills and brilliant graphics. The games can include actions such as tilting the Leappad Ultra, touching the screen and using the d pad.

Ultra book – The ultra book is a story with a difference. With different reading levels (1,2 and 3) the same story is told at difficulty levels that grow with the child. There are also different reading modes which either read entire to you book, read each page at a time or to let the child read themselves. Other menu settings allow you to choose a page to start at, select a game from the story or record your voice as you read the story. The stories have songs, animations, interactions, games and learning included. Interactions include tapping inanimate objects such as bushes, trees and animals, sounding out words and shaking the Leappad at certain points in the story.