Top positive review
7 people found this helpful
it's absolutely perfect and my nephew loved it to bits
on 27 December 2014
Apart from some minor gripes, it's absolutely perfect and my nephew loved it to bits. If you've got the space, it's a really excellent toy.
Assembly is a little difficult, and really I don't think a child could put it together very readily. It took three adults half an hour to assemble it out of the box and there was a lot of humming and hawing and "Am I doing this right?" moments. The joints don't really click together, and you often have to brute force things. Despite this, nothing broke, and the joints were all watertight (although my nephew quickly managed to splash water everywhere. No real surprises there). Once assembled it was sturdy and we were able to move it with no bother.
The other wee problem was the boats that come with it, which I think are just kind of naff. Some of them aren't watertight, so wind up filling up with water, making them totally useless. In general they're just a bit too big and fat. The canals themselves are massive, and you could scoot decent sized boat toys around them no problem, but the ones that come with it are just a little unwieldy. Not holding this against it, though, because it's easy to get- or make- other boats to put into it. What you're buying here is the canals, and they're beyond reproach.
I looked through a few Big Waterplay sets before finding this one, and it seems to be the only one with a lock/pump/slide mechanism. This is the best part- allowing your child to raise boats up with the pump, then send them down the slide on a torrent of water. It's great fun and a very cool mechanical lesson too. I was a little dubious as to whether it would all work at first, but it works a charm. The pump, the watertight gates and the lock all work. If you're after one of the Big Waterplay sets but don't know which one to choose, I'd highly recommend this one for that mechanic alone.
I think this is a really fantastic "uncle" gift- tons of fun, but does tend to get water everywhere, so if you can give it to a niece or nephew and then clear out before you have to clean up, it's the best!