Top positive review
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Simpler Than it Seems
on 25 September 2013
I'm not sure quite what I was expecting but I thought there would be more to this than there is, (I suspect the original price may have had something to do with it).
What you get is an approx. 200mm x 190mm toy dog with an all plastic skateboard, remote control, some stickers for the skateboard and a pair of glasses and scarfe for the pup.
It's all pretty lightweight stuff but is not cheap looking.
Obviously aimed squarely at the little girl market, this is bright & cheerful. The pup is covered in glossy and well shaped Nylon fur with effort made to the details like eyes, nose, ears & tongue to maximise cuteness.
Your canine pal comes with velcro'd feet that stick to the velcro on the skateboard. This is where the majority of the 30+ tricks come into play, it's all about how you attach the pampered pooch to the skateboard.
The 'wand' remote is very simple to use with just two buttons that stand out brightly in pink against the turquoise remote. There is the neat idea of dumping 'reverse' and instead having the skateboard either go forward or do a complete turn. This means the pup is always facing forwards and makes for a more satisfying 'trick' as your child doesn't have to spend half the time watching the pup fly around backwards.
Fly is the right word because this is where the whole lightweight bit pays off. This can motor along at a fair old nip. On a flat surface, (floor only - this'll be off the end of a table in a couple of seconds) Trixie will be doing her best F1 impression, whatever position you've velcro'd her into!
Tip the skateboard back gently onto it's rear wheels and it'll wheelie along happily with the toy aboard.
I would say 5+ for this one, definitely not little un's and interest is likely to wane rapidly once double figures approach. The box says 4+ but that may just be a bit young and lead to some frustration in piloting the toy around.
Be aware that 5 batteries are required but NOT included in the package. 2 xAAA + 3 x AA. These power the remote and did I mention that your talented dog barks endlessly & plays the odd tune? (via the remote)
The dog is posable but remains quite a nice toy in it's own right even if not exactly cuddly.
The durability is likely to depend largely on just how ham fisted your little treasure is I suppose. While plastic the skateboard can take some knocks, (although outside use is probably not best and will definitely reduce it's lifespan). The pup is also not as durable as normal soft toys but no electronic toy is. The remote is pretty sturdy and should last as long as the rest of the kit.
For my money the adverts have this aimed at far older children than it probably should be and I do wonder about the whole 'collect 'em all and show off together' bit? Quite frankly this makes for a quite nice toy all on it's own but for pre-high schoolers.
Nicely packaged for use as a prezzie, and pretty well made and easy to use. This gets 4 stars from me despite it's faults, (limited educational value, additional expense for batteries & a question over it's long term appeal) because it has been well thought out and executed. The puppy is easily posed and rather cute and well designed, the lightweight but sturdy skateboard motors about nippily and is easily controlled to pull off some nice manoeuvres and the remote looks nice but doesn't sacrifice it's straightforward use and simple layout.
All in all it's a toy dog that sticks to a remote controlled plastic skateboard! But I can see this being appreciated as a present and giving a reasonable amount of fun. It isn't cheap but I don't think it looks it either so in all it represents good VFM and is worth a look.