|LeapFrog? Leapster? 2 Learning Game System - Green
|List Price: $69.99
Our Price: $44.00
You Save: $25.99 (37%)
With this smart handheld system, children learn valuable school skills through a variety of animated games and activities. Kids use the interactive touch screen and stylus throughout 30 educational games featuring characters they love. The Leapster2 System also offers several options for creative play. Little learners can easily connect online for extra activities and rewards. And best of all, parents can use the Leapster2 to connect to the LeapFrog Learning Path, an online, interactive tool in which parents can get updates and see firsthand what their children are learning.
Leapster2 System comes with built-in starter games; additional software sold separately. Requires 4 "AA" batteries, not included. Measures 13"W x 10.5"H.
Put innovative creativity and fun at your kids' fingertips -- and watch them learn in the process -- with the The LeapFrog Leapster 2 Learning Game System. This battery-operated handheld game system goes where your children go, and brings plenty of learning fun along. It comes with two pre-installed educational games, and many more are available: purchase an optional SD card separately for access to additional online games and to take advantage of other online features; or you can purchase game cartridges to add to your Leapster 2 repository. The included games have skill levels suitable for children ages 4 to 8.
Children will love playing the educational games. View larger.
Insert different game cartridges (sold separately) for endless fun. View larger.
The console has a comfortable, curved shape, although it may be a tad large and heavy for smaller hands. It features a full-color touch screen and sound that's a far cry better than the beeps of old-school handheld consoles. (Parents will appreciate the volume control and a jack for headphones!) Control and manipulate the console with the included stylus and with the videogame-style D pad and other buttons.
|What We Think |
(what this means)
The Good: Battery-powered console goes where your child goes, offers versatile, educational fun.
The Bad: An SD card, which must be purchased separately, is required to take advantage of many Leapster 2 features.
In a Nutshell: Handheld game console offers fun, educational games that accommodate your child's learning curve.
|At a Glance |
Ages: 4 to 8
Requires: Four AA batteries
We found the initial set-up to be relatively easy: install the four required AA batteries, and navigate through the self-explanatory screens to create user profiles for up to 3 children (which come in handy for accessing online features). After this quick set-up, a menu screen will appear, where you can choose to play the pre-loaded games, go online, or insert a game cartridge.
Fun and Learning
Leapster 2 games are designed to grow with your child ages 4 through 8. The console is pre-loaded with two games: The "Dragons to the Rescue! Learning Game," is a "video game" type activity with four different levels, the first helping kids identify letters and numbers, the most advanced giving them spelling and multiplication practice, all while navigating a dragon past monstrous storm clouds and scrambling to collect magic crystals. The "Creativity Castle Art Studio" is a rather low-tech art program. Players can select a background scene to "color" using the stylus and "decorate" with fun animated stamps. While it does foster creativity, this program is somewhat clumsy -- your Paint program on your PC does a much better job. But "Dragons" was fun enough to keep even an adult tester enjoyably diverted.
Unfortunately, an SD card is required for taking advantage of much of what the Leapster 2 has to offer -- which is a drawback, because it must be purchased separately. Without the SD card, which offers more memory, you cannot save artwork, download new games, or take advantage of the online "Learning Path," which will be available August 2008. (This online program allows you to register and upload your children's Leapster 2 profiles to show you their learning activities and their progress.)
In the meantime, without the SD card, you can still purchase game cartridges. And you still can plug your console -- with the included USB cable -- into your PC for your children to view and print "rewards" for completing different game levels (for Dragons to the Rescue, they're certificates of achievement) or to print pictures to color with actual crayons (to encourage some "old-fashioned" creativity!) You must first install the Leapster 2 software on your computer, which comes on the included CD-ROM.
What's in the Box
Leapster 2 Game System, USB cable, CD-ROM
All Leapster games work with all Leapster systems.
Windows XP or Windows Vista operating system
Pentium III 500 MHz processor
Monitor resolution of at least 1024 X 768
Available USB port
256 MB of RAM (512 MB recommended)
300 MB free disk space
Microsoft Internet Explorer version 6 or higher
Mac OS X 10.4+
PPC G4 or any Intel-based Apple computer
Monitor resolution of at least 1024 X 768
Available USB port
256 MB of RAM (512 MB recommended)
300 MB free disk space
- The preschool gaming handheld that connects to the LeapFrog? Learning Path, an online experience that lets you see what your child is learning.
- Play and learn school skills on the go or connect online for extra activities and rewards.
- Library of over 30 exciting learning games featuring characters kids love.
- Included and additional games teach skills in a range of subjects, such as language arts, reading, mathematics and science.
- Parents can connect online to the LeapFrog? Learning Path to see what their child is learning. Kids connect online for extra activities and rewards.
- leapster game
my grandsons christmas present and even tho he wanted a DS he loves the leapster. it is educational but fun. within the first 2 days he went through 5 sets of batteries. Definitely get the recharger if you order. would definitely order from this seller again....more info
- gift for 2yr old grandson
I purchased this for my 2 yr old g-son because he always wants his sister's game-boy while in the car. He's happy, my g-daughter is happy and my daughter is extremely happy - which makes me very happy. ...more info
- Great educational toy
The leapster 2 is fantastic, great quality, my son has dropped it several times and nothing has happend to it. He loves the new games that came out to go with it and even the ones that are already on the system.
Its very educational too, he's learned to write all of the letters in he alphabet and do addition and subtraction. It really makes learning fun. Better than a game boy.
- Pre-installed Game is Awful
We ordered this Leapster for our four year old who was SO excited since his last one broke. Immediatly after turning it on he was directed to the pre-installed game which seemed entirely inappropriate for kids. It's a dragon game with a very scary villian saying he 'hates' the sun and has a scary laugh. I know this may not seem so bad to many parents but to us it was awful. We try hard to not expose our kids to ugly monsters, dragons, and evil and were dissappointed to see that Leapster would have this as a standard game on their Leapster. We have returned this Leapster and are going to just order the other version so as to aviod this game. ...more info
- Tips from a Hopeful Owner
I just bought a Leapster 2 for my daughter and thought I would offer some tips, since I read all these reviews in making my purchase.
First of all, I found great deals at the Leapfrog website, but FYI they do not do price matching or price adjustments after the fact.
We got a pink Leapster 2 with a slew of accessories.
- The Leapster itself I am pleased with. The colors are cute, buttons easy, it is heavier/bigger than I expected (I have more experience with Nintendo DS).
- A pink hardcase - it holds the leapster itself with room for a game or two. I think this is a good investment to keep the unit clean and operational.
- A charger - I was not going to get into the AA battery replacement game. This is actually a replacement for the battery panel that is on the unit, as opposed to charging the original unit, which was disappointing to me because it is blue and our leapster is pink (but I will live).
- An extra AC Adapter (the charger can act as one as well, but it was cheap).
- Headphones (upcoming airplane trip)
- Case that holds 6 games, was way cheap and well designed.
- A pink backpack --> this is great! There are two pockets inside, one that perfectly holds the case of games and one that perfectly holds the leapster inside its hard case. And the headphones fit great in the front pocket. I adore the backpack, I am so glad we got it.
- Games: Backyardigans, Diego, Two Dora Games, Princess Learning, Letterpillar, and Rock the Word (that game was free).
My daughter is only 2 1/2 and so far most of the content seems too difficult for her. I am hoping she will grow into it in the next 6 months. The Diego game has a shapes mini-game, which I had hopes for, but she still needs to learn to use the stylus to precisely drag and drop. ...more info
- Better then the original
My 4 and 6 year old girls had the original and loved it! Now they have Leapster 2 and love it even more! I love the fact that they trimmed it down it makes it easier for them to hold. 2GB SD works great! Took a while to link profile online due to heavy x-mas traffic but works as described! Thank you leapster for making great products!...more info
- Problems from Day 1....
Bought this for my 3 year old son. We had the Leapster L-Max that died after about 3 years. While it was working my kids loved it and played with it often. Thought the new Leapster 2 was a better option this time because you can download and save stuff on the SD card. We rarely used the plug into the TV option of the L-Max (very grainy image on TV, really didn't add much to the fun factor, and the potential for kids doing something to the TV). My son was very excited to receive the Leapster 2 for Christmas. This was short lived because the machine wouldn't work properly and my son just got frustrated and upset. The problems we had were: 1) screen freezes up, 2) machine shuts down by itself during middle of the game, 3) won't recognize the cartridge and continue to loop back to the very begnning of the menu. I had bought 2 more Leapter 2 for my nephews so was very concerned that all 3 were defective. So far, it seems like it's just ours. [...] Leapters are the only "video games" we allow our kids so it would be a big bummer if this doesn't work......more info
- 1 in 4, so far
that's 1 in 4 that work, so far!
i've bought four of these handhelds. the games are phenomenal, and the possibilities of the leapster 2 over the original are awesome--to say the least. but so far 3 out of the 4 i've purchased were non-functional.
one had a bad screen, 1/4 of the screen was cloudy and dark. i didn't notice at first, and my kid didn't know better... but it was really pretty bad.
another had a non-fuctional SD card slot... that actually disabled LeapFrog Connect when it was plugged in (i had to reinstall several times to fix issues and figure it out, support was no help).
another had the 'touch' feature of the touch screen go out on the second use, plus it didn't remember the fact that i had already chosen a profile (i heard there's a fix for this that requires multiple key sequences at startup and recalibration of the screen. but on the second use? it's so going back to the store listed as broken!).
only one of the leapster 2's i've had so far has worked, but even then the screen image is lower quality than what i'd expect after having an original leapster. and some of the games have choppy motion to them (even the built in ones), which surprised me a lot.
however, when you can get one to work, they are so beneficial for young children vs the DS and PSP, that if you must have a gaming system besides a Personal Computer. the leapster is really the only way to go (i was severally unimpressed with v-tech products too). the benefits of the truly educational games and the Learning Path (which has major issues currently) make the leapster 2's worth buying, if they work.
i think leapster 2's may have been seriously rushed to market for xmas '08....more info
- Major disappointment with the Leapster 2
My 5 year old son received the Leapster 2 as a birthday present in August from his grandparents. We had used the original Leapster for several years with both my 5 year old and my 7 year old. The cartridge system had worked well and they had enjoyed the games. When I found that the new Leapster2 would have an online component I thought, "about time". This is such a no brainer for expandability these days. Boy was I wrong! LeapFrog has given a new meaning to "no brainer" with its (clearly premature) release of the Leapster2.
We started by turning the device on and creating a "player profile" for my son. Without connecting it to the internet, or using any of his old Leapster cartridges, there is one game available. It is called Dragon Kingdom, but should be called "Short and Boring". Clearly, the online content was the next thing to try. I installed the LeapFrog Connect software and received any updates. The software then told me to connect the handheld with the included USB cable and link my son's player profile to the online connect program. I plugged in the cable and waited ... the small info space at the top of the screen said "checking Leapster2 handheld" with little bars moving across the screen. After about 20 sec, the screen displayed "connected". However, under the section that says "pick player profile to connect", there were no profiles. I tried disconnecting and reconnecting ... nothing. I made another profile for my daughter ... nothing. I searched the website for help with this issue ... maddening! I wondered if deleting the profiles and starting over would help ... nope! In frustration, we put the game aside into my "to do" pile and my son moved on with his other gifts.
Several months later (we all know how those "to do" piles go), I found enough time to try to solve the problem again. I basically went through all the same frustrating steps with the same results and decided to just call customer service. Oops! - no customer support phone number on the website. Just a place to email my question. Does anyone else hate this? You finally find the time to solve a problem and you can't even talk to anyone. You have to email your question and wait several days for an answer from India ... (sorry for the rant). So, here was my email ...
** "I have the Leapster2 and have put a profile (actually 2) on the handheld. I then installed the connect software and received the latest updates. When I connect it and turn it on the connect program says "checking Leapster2 handheld" with several green bars moving from left to right. After about 20 sec, it displays "Leapster2 connected" for about 3 sec, and then disappears. Then, no profiles come up on the left hand side. I've tried deleting a profile and remaking it, but this still never shows any of the profiles. Now what?"
Several days later I got this response (from Jobelle M) ...
** "Try creating again a player profile on your Leapster2 handheld. Launch first your LeapFrog Connect Application, then the application will tell you when are you going to connect your device to the computer. Link the player profile to your LeapFrog account and activate the Learning Path, click the Parents button and sign in. On the Parents Home page, click "Link player profiles" to link the player profile. Create a child footprint for him or her before you link the player profile."
OK, the exciting grammatical syntax aside, this is exactly what I had already tried to do (several times). You can't "link the player profile" if there are NO PLAYER PROFILES! Although I read this response in late November, I didn't have time to try to play with the thing again until this morning. I figured I'd try again to walk through these steps. When I started up the Leapster 2 connect software I was informed that there was an important new update (surprise .. wonder if anyone else had concerns). After downloading and reinstalling the new software I connected the handheld and ... it miraculously came up with our player profiles!! Amazing. I guess Jobelle hadn't known that there was a critical update coming ...
So, I now went through the (somewhat confusing and involved) process of linking the profiles to the online "learning path" for parents. I was surprised to see that in the drop-down box for selecting the profile to link to contained all of the current profiles, and the ones I had deleted. Now I had to select from one of the three "Jack's" and two "Claire's".
Next I went to the "games" section of the connect program and found 2 games that were free to download .. Letterpiller and a numbers game. I had a spare 256mb SD card and popped it in. The manual says the card will be reformatted. I downloaded the games and the Connect program said they were now installed on my handheld. I disconnected and tried to load up ... nothing. Not even able to click on the SD card icon on the handheld. Hmm, I took out the card and popped it in my computer's card reader. It hadn't been formatted and in fact still had old pictures on it! No leapster content whatsoever. I reformatted it (with FAT32 selected) and tried again. Now the Connect program said I didn't have a card in the handheld at all. I reformatted (again) with the FAT format option and tried again. Now when I connected to the online system the program said it was syncing to the handheld. When finished, I disconnected and turned on the handheld. Now it recognized the card was there!! Hallelujah! But when I clicked on the SD icon, the handheld said, "click on a game to get started" ... but there were no icons on the screen to click. I tried to go back but the handheld was locked up. Turned it off and tried the whole connect thing again ... essentially re-installing the 2 programs. This time when I clicked on the SD icon, it showed one picture (Letterpiller), but the other picture was blank. I was able to play the Letterpiller game, but there was no way to back out of it and get back to the home screen. I turned it off and back on, and then was instructed that the game was not working and to "have my parents reconnect the handheld to the internet to download the games again". Oh joy ... here we go again!!! Maybe I'll email Jobelle ...
Just so it is clear, I am an engineer with years of tech experience and plenty of history of solving other computer problems. This is a prime example of a product that was rushed to market with very little (if any) beta-testing, poorly designed online system, and scanty, disappointing product support. I wonder how many of these have ended up in the junk drawer .. or the trash can. That's where ours is going.
- Daughter LOVES this....
Mya daughter is 5, and she loves this! My son is also 2 and he enjoys stealing this from "sissy" so he can color. I think it's educational. It provides me with a little quiet time in the evening... Looking fwd to buying more games....more info
- 2GB SD Works Great
My son has only had his Leapster2 for two days now, so a review is a little premature, but I wanted to comment on the SD card as several reviewers have reported problems with sd cards over 256 mb. I had an extra 2 GB Kingston mini-sd card laying around. It worked great without any manual steps. I just inserted the card, connected the leapster to our computer, ran the leapster software, and was able to copy the two games onto the sd card....more info
- Lots of fun
I definitely recommend getting the recharging station as it goes through regular batteries frequently. Both of my girls love it, and are learning from the games....more info
- Video Game Lite
The Leapster2 is a nice alternative to those who do not want to purchase a real video game system. It's look and feel is close enough to a Nintendo DS so that pre-K and early elementary school users will feel like they are interacting with a big kid toy. A child who has access to a DS, Game Cube, or Wii will likely be bored.
The games are fairly simplistic. Skills include identifying numbers, identifying letters, and finding the next step in a sequence. While games have a number of levels, children are neither rewarded nor penalized for their answers. The educational questions are embedded in other activities; therefore, children may ignore the questions and still have a satisfying gaming experience. This negates the value of the parental website which purports to measure the child's success. Without watching the child's interaction, it is impossible to know whether s/he is trying to answer correctly or engaging in alternative play. The parent's web site is most valuable for its feedback on the amount of hours played over the number of sessions per week. This is not an alternative to tutoring for a struggling academic.
Games cost between $25 and $30 a piece, which is not an insignificant investment. The instruction manual encourages parents to purchase an SD card to store games downloaded from the web site. However, according to LeapFrog's customer service representative, there are only two games available for download (both free) and no plans to add more. Given this scenario, the SD card is an unnecessary investment.
LeapFrog has created an acceptable, entry-level gaming system for the youngest audiences. Future versions would be improved by the ability to play music, download additional games, save and share art projects, and a more sophisticated educational approach. Before purchasing the system, parents should consider their goals and the amount of money that they will deem an acceptable investment to achieve them.
- Great stand alone game machine, but crappy otherwise
My son has fun with the cartridges sold at the retail store, but the sync on PC and SD card matching is very unstable. The software and website for your account is not so intuitive either. I basically gave up on any feature that requires the SD card or Sync to PC.
I would recommend Leapfrog to include a SD card that works, since it seems that all the SD cards I own make it hang/crash. (And I'm using ones that are less than 256MB as instructed.....)...more info
- my son is 7 and this is the first handheld game that he will not put down
I bought this for my 7 yr old and he loves playing it. we have bought other hand-helds for him and he loses interest immediately. I think this is a great step before buying him an actual psp or gameboy...more info
- SD card feature does not function
I purchased two Leapster2s from different stores and neither one could detect an SD card. They could not detect a new SD card nor a used one that I cleared. This negates what was a major selling point for me which is being able to download free games and for my daughters to be able to save artwork and such to the cards. I might as well have bought the regular Leapster and saved my money. I checked out the Amazon comments a little too late. Others have complained about the SD card feature with the Leapster2 and their are complaints about picture quality with the Leapster Lmax. When companies give you less than what you are paying for it is called a "RIP OFF". I used to expect more from Leap Frog. Boy do I wish Sony made a competing product....more info
- Worst piece of technology ever produced.
My 2 daughters each received one of these for christmas of 08. I have since attempted to download games for them from the website because this is supposed to have online connectivity.
The online connectivity is a JOKE. There are 2 games to download, which when you go to play them you have turn off the device to play another game. The HOME key brings you back to the beginning of the game, not the home screen of the device.
The SD card is a joke. Leapster recommends you have a 256MB card for this. I don't know where they pulled this number from, we can all guess. I had a 1GB card and a 2GB card in these at first because I thought it would be plenty of storage for the "online" content that I could download on it. Well the 2 games that I downloaded for them takes up a whopping 7MB ( for those of you that don't know: MB = Megabyte and GB = Gigabyte. There is approximately 1000 Megabytes in a Gigabyte, yes technically 1024 MB in a GB depending on who your talking to.) So I was using less than 1% of the card. So I decided I would put a 16MB and 32MB card in so that I could use the other ones for better use. Well the cards are not recognized by the Leapster. I have tried every which way to get the cards recognized. I have reformatted them many times and they still don't work.
I have not called Customer Service but it seems from what I have read they will blame the problem on it not being a 256MB card.
The kids like to play the leapster, thats about it.
The graphics are subpar even for 1990s standards. You would think with all the technology today in handhelds (my PHONE does 3D!!!) you would think they would have something better. This device was definitely built with the absolute lowest tolerable graphics.
If these weren't gifts I would never have bought one. I would have spent my money on a Nintendo DS where the graphics are better and there is more of a selection of games. There are a lot of Edutainment games for the Nintendo DS as well.
We also have a LeapFrog TAG which I do like, so I don't have a complete problem with the manufacturer. Just think they should have tested their product a wee bit more before releasing it....more info