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MLP Friendship Celebration App Review
The MLP Friendship Celebration App was first announced at the NY Toy Fair of 2015 and about a week ago the app was first spotted in the Google Play store, but lacked worldwide availability. As of yesterday, the app seems to be available everywhere.
This is the first of two interactive apps that will be launched for the My Little Pony series, as the Equestria Girls will get a separate app too. Both apps will work with Zapcodes, as you might have heard before. In case you didn't: The Zapcodes are little QR-like codes that are printed on the ponies or necklaces for the Equestria Girls dolls. These Zapcodes have a dotted line around them, which are unique for each character and release (so not for each individual pony). The MLP Friendship Celebration and Equestria Girls app can read those codes and see what pony you're trying to scan, and you'll be able to use that pony in the app.

Getting the app

Installing the app is advised to be done over a Wi-Fi connection, as it's a 75MB download. You can get the app in the Google Play Store or iTunes Store. After this download it may download additional data, so be sure to stay on Wi-Fi at first start: the total app requires 111MB of space on my Nexus 5. If you can't find the app after installing it then here's a little tip: The app is simply called 'Pony' in the app drawer and not MLP Friendship Celebration. Confusing!
Note: The app requires an Android 2.3+ device and can be a little demanding for graphics. It's possible that not every Android phone is able to download or run the app, especially if you have an older low-end phone. For iOS users you need at least iOS 6 and can be downloaded for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch.

The main menu

In the MLP Friendship Celebration App it's all about hosting and attending parties. You're in charge of who's coming and what's being served. Once I started the app for the first time I saw the everything was in Dutch. I didn't expect to see that directly in the first version, but this is of course perfect for little kids who'll use the app as well. Besides a few buttons and pop-ups there isn't much text in here anyway, but the voice acting is only available in English sadly.
Talking about the voice acting: The ponies are not voiced by the official voice actors from the show, and are all off from what you expect. It's weird that the Gameloft game did have official voice actors, but that this Hasbro app doesn't.
MLP Friendship Celebration App Review

The main menu itself looks pretty fun: you start in a Ponyville house filled with confetti and balloons. Around the house are various items you can click on to start activities:

  • Mailbox to check for upcoming parties
  • Calendar to see all planned parties
  • Chest to see all your gifts and unlockables
  • Scrapbook to see all your photos and selfies
  • Partycannon for an instant party

You start off with a little tutorial to learn all those options and attend your first party, which is in your mailbox and will later show on your calendar.
MLP Friendship Celebration App Review
You don't hoof to miss my party! (That pun died in the translation, sorry)

MLP Friendship Celebration App Review
I wonder who's hosting that mysterious party on Sunday!

The first party

On my first day (which may differ per person) I went to Rainbow Dash who was hosting the 'most epic party ever'. You don't need a Zapcode pony to attend to a party, but it's more fun of course! You can scan up to 4 ponies, which enables 4-player multiplayer for the events, but you can always scan less ponies and let the app randomly add more ponies until you have 4.
If you're looking for ponies with Zapcodes, then try our MLP Zapcodes Database, you'll find all supported ponies for this app in there so you can invite your very own ponies into the game!
To scan a pony, simply hold her in front of your camera and focus on the Zapcode. There is a little bug though, which mirrors what the camera is seeing, but the Zapcodes can still be scanned.
At the moment, these are the ponies that are available in the game: Applejack, Rainbow Dash, Twilight Sparkle, Pinkie Pie, Fluttershy, Rarity, Princess Celestia, Blossomforth, Button Belle, Coco Pommel, Lily Blossom, Princess Cadance, Trixie, Nurse Redheart and Starlight Glimmer.

Once you've scanned your ponies you are ready to attend the party and meet Rainbow Dash. On the party screen there isn't much to do, but you can click on the clouds to see Spitfire, Scootaloo and Derpy appear! At the bottom of the screen there is a little button which will show all available activities at the party: Eating, making photos and playing games.
MLP Friendship Celebration App Review

The party activities

The first activity is eating and drinking at a table with all the invited guests. Each pony has a plate and glass which you can add food and drinks to. After that you can eat and drink and restock everyone. Additionally there are presents from every pony on the table which you can open and unlock for your collection. Besides some animations there isn't much to do here.
MLP Friendship Celebration App Review

The second activity is making pictures or selfies. By default the front camera is activated, but you can switch to the back camera. I expected some filters or borders I could add for more fun, but there wasn't any option available next to the default balloons.
MLP Friendship Celebration App Review

The last activity is the game you can play with up to four players and differs for each pony. Every player will take a corner of the screen, so it's best to lay your phone or tablet on a flat surface. At the Rainbow Dash party you have to tap the screen and push a storm cloud around to pop the balloons of the other players and defend your own balloons. The last pony standing wins the round.
If you're playing alone or with less than 4 players you can leave some spots open and the app will take control over that pony.
You're free to restart any of the activities or choose to return to your home and see what's available.
MLP Friendship Celebration App Review

MLP Friendship Celebration App Review

Back at the main menu

After your first party you can check out the unlocked food items and gifts at the chest, or see the results of your photos in the scrapbook. Usually, after you complete a party, you'll also get invites for more parties. Eventually you'll fill up the calendar for up to 7 parties, one for each day. And that's directly one of the biggest flaws in my eyes: You can only attend one pony's party a day, which means that after about 10-20 minutes of playing there isn't much to do anymore and you'll have to wait for the next day to discover more, especially when you only have a single Zapcode pony.
At the calendar you'll also see the party hats you've collected. You can get these by completing events and parties, up to 3 per day. I have no idea whether these unlock anything, though.

The second party

Today I attended the second party, this time by party master Pinkie Pie herself. This party also has a Derpy, but this time in balloon form together with a bunny (perhaps Angel). At Pinkie Pie's party the first two events are identical, but the game is different. At this game you pop piƱatas and try to collect the most candy out of them. This game is lots of fun, but can get quite wild if everyone is tapping on the screen.
MLP Friendship Celebration App Review

MLP Friendship Celebration App Review

MLP Friendship Celebration App Review

The partycannon

At the party cannon you can directly host a party of a pony, without waiting for her party at the calendar, but you'll need to have a Zapcode to decide which pony will host the party. After picking your host you can still add up to 4 attendees or let the app fill these in at random. With the partycannon you can easily and quickly try to get all the unlockables and see what other parties look like!

Conclusion

The app looks, sounds and feels nice and smooth. The vectors and animations are very close to those of the show and the whole app feels like fun and happiness. It's a nice take on making the My Little Pony toys interactive with this app, but it's lacking quite some options in this version. For example: the eating and taking photos activities do not change for every pony and are not very exciting in my opinion. The games are a lot of fun, but won't stay entertaining for a long time. There is a good amount of ponies included now, and as we'll see more and more Cutie Mark Magic releases I'm sure there will be more characters available too.

Pros

  • Great design and animations
  • Making the ponies interactive
  • Scanning the ponies works well
  • Translated
  • Free

Cons

  • Other voice actors
  • Voices still in English
  • No additional borders for the camera
  • Can get boring too quickly

17 comments :

  1. Hey there!
    Is there any way you guys can tell me on which devices the app is available? I can't download it STILL...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Do you have Android 2.3 or higher? If you don't have that you probably can't download it because of that.

      Delete
  2. Princess celestia sounds like a little boy.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Can you play the game without any Zapcodes?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, you can attend the daily party without the need of Zapcodes, but you can always visit our Zapcode Database to get all Zapcodes without the need of any ponies!

      Delete
  4. Thanks for the zap codes database it worked : )

    ReplyDelete
  5. What happened to the zap code data base and the zap coded ponies on the brush able data base there gone? !

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We've temporarly removed them. We hope to be able to add the brushables back to the database soon.

      Delete
  6. As a reminder, the voices are not only available in English, I downloaded it today and it has voices in the Brazilian Portuguese version as well. Sadly the voice acting is performed by a single girl. It works with Celestia, Rarity, Rainbow Dash and Suri, but the others... Meh.
    And also, I somehow attended 5 parties in the same day!

    ReplyDelete
  7. Every time my daughter tries to scan a Zapcode, it says "Hmmm... you need camera and storage permissions to use this app." But there are NO restrictions and the camera and storage should be totally accessible! Any suggestions? I can't find any advice online... It's especially lame because we already own the right toys, we just can't scan them... NONE of the camera games or options work! They all give that same message.

    ReplyDelete
  8. I have the same problem I cannot scan the pony

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. As of the last update there seems to be trouble with scanning the codes for some people, but our apps still work fine. Perhaps it's best to contact Hasbro about this?

      Delete
  9. Anyone have any luck?

    ReplyDelete
  10. I also have the same issue with this app. It doesn't open the camera to scan the ponies.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. As of the last update there seems to be trouble with scanning the codes for some people, but our apps still work fine. Perhaps it's best to contact Hasbro about this?

      Delete
  11. I have a samsung galaxy tab a, i can scan the pony and i get a green v, but then nothing happends... can you help me?

    ReplyDelete
  12. flurry heart can talk but 2 dissapointments 1 its difficult to scan ponies 2 no cutie mark crusaders

    ReplyDelete