Product Type: Octonauts baby toys
Newest Review: ... front which they can see out of. The clear part at the front opens to allow several of the Octonauts to fit inside. It has two little bump... more
Now we have 3 Captain Barnacles'...
Octonauts Gup A
Member Name: bush1
Octonauts Gup A
Advantages: Fun Octonauts toy, fits with other toys in range
Disadvantages: Not much play value on own, quite expensive, front plastic section falls off easily
We already have a growing Octonauts toy collection, but as it is one of my daughter's favourite shows and she keeps playing with them, we have allowed her to get more of the toys. She already had the Gup-B and received the Octopod for Christmas from her grandparents. She then got this Gup-A from her uncle for Christmas as well when she was 3 and a half.
The Octonauts are a series of cartoon characters created by Meomi (Vicky Wong and Michael Murphy) who have undersea adventures in their Octopod. Their mission is to explore, rescue and protect which they do while having lots of adventures. Their leader is Captain Barnacles and there are several other characters based loosely around other animals, most of them land mammals! The programmes can be seen on CBeebies or you can buy the DVDs.
---About the product:
The Gup-A is one of the submarine style vehicles the Octonauts use for getting around under water. The Gup-A is generally driven by Captain Barnacles but it is one of the larger gups and often carries more than one of the Octonauts. This toy version comes complete with Captain Barnacles in a red outfit (I don't think he wears this very often on the show...); a hook and net that can affix to the front of the gup; and a small red angler fish.
The Gup itself looks very similar to the Gup in the TV programme being made of blue plastic with a clear plastic section at the front which they can see out of. The clear part at the front opens to allow several of the Octonauts to fit inside. It has two little bumps in the front which allow you to stand two of the Octonauts onto them with the corresponding holes in their feet. The back section also opens and has another two bumps to stand two Octonauts on. Right at the back of the Gup-A is a yellow propeller which can be wound up so that the Gup moves either on a solid floor or in water.
The Gup-A is a perfect addition to my daughter's Octonauts collection so she was very excited to see it when she opened it at Christmas. She already had several of the figures so was able to play with this straight away. We were at her grandparent's house that had laminate flooring so we decided to try out the movement on hard floors. You can wind the propeller easily as an adult although my daughter struggles a lot with it as it unwinds again before she has finished. When we put it on the floor I have to admit I wasn't expecting much, but to my surprise, it actually moved quite well across the flooring. Obviously this doesn't work so well in water, but then I have never found a wind-up toy that does move well in the bath!
My daughter has found many play opportunities with this set both in and out of the bath. The biggest fault I have found with it is that the front clear plastic section falls off very easily. Whilst the back section is hinged, the front section is not and comes off too easily and is a bit too fiddly for my daughter to put in herself. For her, this is not a massive issue, but it is a pretty bad design flaw overall.
Everything else about the Gup seems to work fine as the extra attachments are easy to fit to the front for her and the whole thing provides a good amount of play value. It allows her to engage in imaginative play or to act out scenes from the programmes. She has managed to be able to get the Octonauts to stand on the little bumps so it is helping her to develop her co-ordination skills as well. You may need to help little ones who still struggle with this.
This retails at around £24 but can often be found on offer in various places. I would recommend waiting for an offer as it is really not worth this amount for a piece of plastic! I got it for around £16 before Christmas, which I think is a reasonable price considering the amount of play my daughter has managed to get from this. She is able to play with it in and out of the bath and enjoys both aspects of the play. It is quite annoying that she now has 3 versions of Captain Barnacles but she seems to think this is great! On its own, it does not allow for much play, but as part of a collection, it is a worthy addition.
Summary: Good for an Octonauts collection, not much play value on own
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