Meet Paint Sparkles Draw – My First Coloring Book HD – to use its full name. It’s available free (with in-app purchases, of course) from the App Store.
I’ve always found it kinda strange that iOS doesn’t come packaged with some sort of native drawing app. Y’know, effectively MS Paint for smartphones; something to doodle on.
As such, I recently jumped into the App Store and somehow (I think I possibly just typed “Paint” into Search and looked for the first thing with decent reviews) found Paint Sparkles Draw.
The Kids Game Club app has your basic drawing needs covered, with a range of colours (including a palette), and other features you’d expect like fill (represented by a paint can, natch) and different thicknesses for the brush.
The first thing you’ll notice is that every time you draw, the paint is accompanied by a fancy effect that looks almost like a glitter explosion. Similarly, there’s a “Magic” brush that randomly changes colour as you draw. Heck, even I’m not too old to appreciate that.
Another fancy feature invites you to shake your phone, at which point fireworks filled with paint fly onto the paper and cause an almighty mess. Brilliant.
Taking advantage of the fact that we’re on a smartphone, you can take pictures with the camera, and import existing pictures from your photo album. Painting over your face? Hours of fun!
As for those in-app purchases (hey, the developers have to make money somehow), there are plenty on offer.
Incidentally, you might want to go to General > Settings > Restrictions > Enable Restrictions > In-App Purchases, lest you find yourself with a great big App Store bill. Buying lots of individual features will quickly land you in double figures.
Conversely, you can actually unlock all features of Paint Sparkles Draw for £2.49, which includes loads of fancy brushes (draw love hearts, draw flowers…) and a ton of pictures (230+) to colour in.
Generously, the first picture in each of the 11 categories is free, so there’s plenty to keep little ones busy even if you’re not willing to fork out for additional content.
The only cons that spring to mind are the lack of an Undo button, as it’s quite easy to accidentally fill the screen with paint or whatever, and the inability to turn off the aforementioned glitter explosion effect.
But otherwise, Paint Sparkles Draw comes highly recommended, and there’s even a vaguely educational element with a lovely American woman shouting the colour names (“Aquamarine!” “Pink!” “Beige!” “Gold!”). Good stuff.
- The magic brush (randomly changes colour)
- The paint-filled fireworks
- Import/take pictures
- The glitter effect as you paint
- No Undo button
- Lots of in-app purchases (careful!)
Summary: Paint Sparkles Draw is an effective painting application primarily aimed at kids, but even I’ve been having loads of fun messing around with it. Take care with the multitude of in-app purchases, or heck, just pay £2.49 to unlock everything.
Developer: Kids Game Club
Price: free @ App Store
Compatibility: Requires iOS 4.3 or later. Compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. This app is optimized for iPhone 5.