In Project USA (Impression Software – ages 6-9), you work for NOGAK (National Organization of Geography and Kids). Your mission is to become a “Geomaster” (i.e. an expert in geography). Everything is presented so that you can click your way through space age doorways, fly around the U.S. in a mock flight-simulator, and access other high-tech type apparatus in pursuit of your goal. The games are quite good, with many topics to choose from. They’re geared, appropriately, towards geographical and historical knowledge. An exception is the “Who am I?” game, which had so many ill-conceived clues that it wasn’t fun. “What state is 237 miles by 266 miles with 32 inches of snowfall?” West Virginia, of course. One serious shortcoming that detracts from the whole program is the poor quality of the photos and video. The imagination that went into creating the snappy interface is absent in this area. Arkansas is illustrated with a photo of baby chickens. The Empire State Building is dwarfed in the worst-ever picture of the New York Skyline; The White House, Capitol, and Supreme Court are shown using strange, low-quality stagnant videos, while the Air and Space Museum is illustrated by a still of a man on the moon – a missed opportunity for a shuttle blast-off. More attention to first-rate multimedia elements would give Project USA a up-to-date look, and would provide a lot more of interest.
– August 1995