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Robotis Play 600 Pets Review by Kelly BurgessRobotis
26228 Enterprise Court
Lake Forest, CA 92630
The Robotis Play 600 Pets kit allows kids ages 7 and up to build their own working robots! With the pet theme of this kit, you can build a cricket, a bluebird, or a puppy. An instruction book is included with full-color, step-by-step illustrations giving assembly instructions for each project. It's available for just $39.90.
I was really excited to use this kit on an especially rainy weekend with my 8-year old son. He and I took turns with the assembly. He mostly needed me to help him interpret the illustrations, mainly because he has attention issues and has trouble focusing on details. But he was able to work on the assembly with minimal help from me. The pieces easily snap into place.
There is just one motor included, and the pieces are shared among each project, so you can only assemble one project at a time. At first, I thought the disassembly was difficult, as it's much harder to take apart than it is to put together, but then I realized there was a handy and efficient tool included that made disassembly a breeze! I was impressed at how well the pieces stayed together once assembled, allowing children to handle the completed project without fear of it falling apart every 5 minutes. That's a key factor to consider if you have an active boy!
We found it easiest to use the parts list for each project to pull out the necessary parts and sort them into little plastic tubs to make assembly more orderly. We assembled each of the three projects and really enjoyed the finished products! In fact, we took little videos of each one making their way across our dinner table and shared them with friends on social media! Even my 17-year old son was really impressed with the projects. They are well-constructed and just plain adorable in the end! The dog and the cricket both "walk," while the bird rolls along smoothly on skinny little rubber tires that fit onto wheels. The fine details of the construction (eyes, antennae, wings, movable ears, etc.) are a nice touch in making the creatures look the way you'd expect each animal to appear!
Some of the projects are a little more advanced than others. I found the cricket to be the most challenging one in this kit. I found it necessary to assemble that one myself, so it would probably be more appropriate for an older child. It took me quite a while to finish it!
We all agreed that it would be fun to construct each project over and over again and play with each pet as a toy for a while before turning it into another pet. I view this kit as an educational toy that will be brought out again and again to be enjoyed over a long span of time. And it's also a great way to improve fine motor skills and increase attention span.
As if it wasn't great enough with what's included, I discovered that we can also download the RoboPlus Design software for PC from the company's website or the RoboPlus Design app from Google Play or Apple to gain four additional design plans for this kit! That will allow us to make a whale, a goldfish, a polar bear, and a tank!
It sounds like there are plenty of projects to keep us busy for the foreseeable future. This would make an awesome gift for the little builder in your life. I look forward to trying out other kits in the Play line in the future. In fact, I have my eye on one for Christmas. Give it a try!
-Product Review by Kelly Burgess, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC, October, 2016