Have fun learning the alphabet with Elmo Loves ABCs for Windows 8 and RT

You know a platform like Windows 8 is hitting the mainstream when the high-profile kids games starting showing up. The dinky little ones with crappy artwork and design come first, followed by professional games starring popular characters. Characters like Elmo and the cast of Sesame Street, for instance!

Elmo Loves ABCs definitely falls into the professional category, as it's an extremely robust learning game for the preschool and kindergarten crowd. The game is available now as a premium Windows 8 and RT app. Head past the break for our quick impressions!

Introducing the alphabet

Elmo Loves ABCs apple

The main interface in Elmo Loves ABCs is a window surrounded by the letters of the alphabet. Within that window, authentic live-action clips of Elmo and the Sesame Street gang will guide young players through the basics of the English alphabet.

After selecting a letter, Elmo's voice will instruct children to trace the uppercase and lowercase versions of that letter. Having successfully filled in both versions of the letter, the app will display three photos of things that start with that letter. Tap one and a short video featuring the object or person will play in the main window.

Kids can take a break from the letter learning by moving a slider on the right of the window to the crayon icon. This launches coloring mode, in which budding artists can draw on a blank canvas using 11 colors. There aren't any tools beyond finger painting, but the game does let kids save their pictures by tapping the save icon.

Move the slider to the bottom position (a magnifying glass) to play hide and seek with the selected letter. The window will be covered in objects like balloons for kids to clear away. Swipe at the clutter enough and the three objects that start with the target letter will be revealed. A decent minigame, but the performance is a little slow on the original Surface RT.

More fun features

Elmo Loves ABCs turtle

Tap the gear at the bottom-left corner of the screen to access a few additional modes and features. There are four alphabet-related songs with videos to sing along with, including the traditional Alphabet Song.

Move the awkward little slider beside the video icons to the right and you'll launch a more advanced letter game. Elmo will ask your child to select the correct letter or object starting with that letter from a field of four choices. It's sort of like a quiz for kids who have already picked up some of their letters.

Elmo Loves ABCs is a great learning game for Windows tablet and PC users. Although the menus are on the clunky side, the art design and activities are all bright and intuitive. Kids who love Sesame Street (as they should!) will have a blast studying their letters and watching Elmo, Cookie Monster, Kermit, and other Sesame Street characters in the included videos.

Those videos do result in a fairly hefty file size, which might explain why Sesame Workshop hasn't published the game on Windows Phone. But if your kid is the right age for the material and has access to a Windows tablet, Elmo Loves ABCs is worth the download.

  • Elmo Loves ABCs – Windows 8 and RT – 704 MB – $4.99 (with trial) – Store Link (opens in new tab)
Paul Acevedo

Paul Acevedo is the Games Editor at Windows Central. A lifelong gamer, he has written about videogames for over 15 years and reviewed over 350 games for our site. Follow him on Twitter @PaulRAcevedo. Don’t hate. Appreciate!

  • K
  • Second to comment
  • Let's not make worthless comments like that.
  • I thought they banned that
  • Isn't this article pointless? If you don't know the alphabet, how you gonna read it?
  • Because parents?
  • Pointless why? Some of us, wait for it, ARE PARENTS WITH YOUNG CHILDREN. Mindblow right.
  • He tried to be smart... Back fired.. O.o
  • PWND
  • Looking at your article, I can see you've made quite some progress thanks to Elmo, Paul. Well done. ;P
  • That made my day, lol.
  • This is awesome. With a 4yr old, I'm always looking at different educational apps to keep her attention without sticking to the same ones and her getting bored.
  • 704MB?, WTH!
  • All those images I imagine.
  • Videos. It has lots of videos and they are stored within the app, not streamed.
  • Lots of videos.  Looks just like the iOS version my son uses.  The "Banana" and "Pie" videos with Bert and Ernie are funny and the "Ladybug" one has a catchy tune.
  • The iOS version is 700MB as well.  Its all the video content.
  • Excellent. I've always wanted to learn the alphabet, and now I can do it with Elmo.
  • My son loves Elmo!! He already has the other sesame street interactive app and now i can add this to his app selection! Hope these apps keep coming. Oh and my son is 3 and is rocking an Asus vivotab note 8 and he never complains about windows 8 being confusing :-p and he loves to use the pen input.
  • The Windows 8 is not confusing
  • Alphabet is getting old, we need new letters :P
  • Use Cyrillic alphabet
  • क - ka ख - kha ग - ga घ - gha ड - da च - cha you can start with these... Once you learn... Let me kno I will add a few more...
  • Let me finish Japanese first ok ;) I'm willing to learn another language after.
  • Cool, I used to study Japanese! Wish I had time to go back and learn more. Polish is next on my list though.
  • I'll let Elmo teach me Japanese! Take my money
  • My daughter love this app and she is two years old.
  • Awesome, I need this. :^) Posted via the WPC App for Android!
  • very nice app, i bought it for the little one