on 20 April 2001
Having completed LTS German 8, it has taken me from complete beginner to intermediate standard (ready to take on something more advanced) in about two months. The opportunity to role-play and interact with the computer is a good idea, probably the nearest thing you'll get to an actual conversation without meeting a native speaker. But, as with most language software, the speech recognition is a little dodgy at times. For a few words, just shouting SEAWEED at the top of your voice into your microphone (not included) sends the recognition guage to "native". But, that is only for a few words. And remember, speak clearly and fairly loudly into the microphone. It does not like timidity. The other minor pain in the neck is that the internet lessons do not seem to function. I have tried to access the website many times, with no joy. But, of course, the web has ample other sources if you wish to expand your language skills. If you can live without the promises of internet lessons, and cope with the occasional peculiarities of the speech recognition, the product has (I estimate) a vocabulary of approximately 1,000 words (more than adequate for a quick trip to see Man U lose in Munich), and all the relevent grammer sections to get round the dreaded German sentence structure. An all round good package, if you're prepared to put in the time to practice. Well worth the money.
on 26 March 2002
I used to work in Germany 20 years ago, and, haing not spoken the language since, wanted to brush up. The basic course is excellent. Full explanations of all verbs and nouns are given. The tests are well explained and easy to get to grips with.
Having completed the basic course there are three other courses to get to grips with; "Travel", "Everyday German", and "Business use". Although I can not fault the content of the material, the presentation leaves one wondering what he( or she ) is expected to do next. Perhaps if there were more prompt screens or help icons, it would be an easier package to work with, but in its present state comprehension is very difficult.
Having said that it is a difficult package to understand, once you have sussed out what is required it is very good. Especially when it comes to the interactive conversations.
In conclusion, I would not recommend this pack for anyone who has no knowledge of German, but would recommend for those who have.