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Shark bite is another game that I bought my son for Xmas this year when it was on offer at Argos. I wouldn't pay more then £6 for it. The game is quite simple and is similar to buckaroo only the other way around, you have to remove the items instead of add them.
In the box you have the pack of plastic shapes such as an anchor, fishbone, skull, water jug etc (a sea theme of things you may find at the bottom basically), then there is the sharks body and the two fins which are packed separately to fit in the box. There are two long hooks and four small black rubber bands which are used to cause the tension of the shark's mouth.
The object of the game is to put all the items in the shark's mouth and then take it in turns to hook out an item without dislodging the shark's mouth and causing him to BITE!
To set up the game you need to slot the shark's fins into the slots on the body. These then have little hooks on them which you attach the two black bands, the other end of the band is attached to a hook on the sharks lower jaw. Without any items on the mouth it will stay shut so pulling it down to put the items on adds weight which will keep it open.
Each player then takes it in turns to choose an item to pick up with their fishing hook (each item has a loophole of some sort for the hook to go in to) and hopefully not dislodge the balance to cause the sharks jaw to spring back. The player that makes the jaw snap loses the game.
This is a very simple game, it does state on the box from age 5 and I think I would say they are being a bit cautious as it can be quite fiddly with all the little items in the mouth all bundled together but a four year old would still get some enjoyment from this game. Also I find that there are probably too many items and they don't all fit in the bottom jaw in the first place. Many times we set it up and some of the shapes would fall off before we had even begun. What we tended to do is put everything inside the shark, close the mouth and tip it up so all the shapes fell forward into the mouth and carefully place it back down on the floor and within seconds you are ready to play again. Each game only lasts about 4-5 minutes so your little one won't get bored. (some of the games that last half an hour seem to lose their appeal)
You do need to take the fins off to put it back in the box properly but it's quite easy to do so no big deal there. The fins are what make the shark sit up slightly and also have the hooks for the bands so they are definitely needed and not just for decoration. I would imagine after a lot of continuous use the elastic band may become looser or snap but they are just your normal little bands and so easily replaced.
This game makes the child use their directional skills, use a steady gentle hand and also to try and calculate which item won't move too many other items.
We also played this a different way where we played solo. Each player tried to take as many items off one by one before the shark snapped shut and then the other player did the same. So although it states 2-4 players it could be played alone I suppose.
My son and I have played this a few times now and he does enjoy it but I wouldn't say it's one of his favourites. At first he was a bit heavy handed and after one or two items taken off the game would be over but now he is bit wiser with it and his hand eye coordination is definitely benefitting from this game. After you have taken a few of the items off you can see the jaw slowly rising, my sons face lights up at this point as he knows at any moment the shark can bite.
Overall this is another cheap game by Chad Valley which provides simple but great fun. Can be fiddly to put the band on in the first instance but once its set up then off you go. I would say you don't have to use all the items if they keep falling off!
Shark Bite is a simple yet effective concept. It is essentially a large plastic shark with a wobbly jaw, from which you need to extract as many items as possible before his jaw finally snaps shut.
There 24 pieces of 'junk' for you to fish (see what I did there? Lol) out of his mouth, including: fish bones; cameras; anchors; mobile phones; and worryingly, hands!
To make sure your own hands don't end up like the ones you are trying to salvage, you are provided with two long, slim poles with hooks on the end, they kind of resemble something the dentist would use in your own mouth.
The shark will need to be put together before you can play.
It is a simple process: you just push the fins into each side of his body, stick on two 'eye' stickers, and attach the jaw.
This is done by looping an elastic band around each side of his jaw, then hooking them onto hooks inside his mouth.
His mouth is quite small so you will probably scrape your hand on the sides of the plastic (as I did) when trying to attach it, but it is a relatively painless process.
The whole assembly procedure will take around 2-3 minutes.
After piecing together the shark you need to prepare the game. This is also a simple process. You should put all the 'junk' pieces into the shark's mouth, then hold it upside down with his jaw closed, you then need to carefully lay him down and slowly let his jaw fall open so the pieces are hanging out ready for extraction.
Sometimes they don't always stay in his mouth, but if you just repeat the process it should be fine.
You are now ready to play.
There is an instruction leaflet which tells you how to attach the pieces and to play the game but after a quick glance, you should no longer need it as it is an extremely simple game to play, and the shark can stay as it is after you initially put it together.
The game is for 2-4 players and consists of each player taking turns in taking a piece of 'junk' out of the shark's mouth, the game ends when his mouth finally snaps shut. When we play, the 'loser' has to re-set the game.
This is actually a really fun game to play as you can see the shark's jaw slowly rising as the weight of the pieces decrease. My son (5), loves this as every time the shark's jaw rises it creates a little more tension in the game and adds to his excitement.
You can usually get around ¾ of the pieces out before his jaw closes, which means that a game tends to only last a few minutes, which is great as you don't need to set aside a certain amount of time to play as you would with some other games.
I also think that the shark looks quite cool as it is so instead of packing it away in the box, we put all the pieces into his body and put him on display on a shelf in my son's room. This makes the game easily accessible so we tend to play a quick game or two more often than we might have done if it had been put away in a box.
As I am writing this I am looking at an advert displayed next to the picture that advertises it at £14.99 from Amazon - DO NOT PAY THIS!
When Amazon sells out of toys, other sellers list theirs on the site at ridiculously inflated prices. People go to Amazon expecting the usual bargains and so buy stuff like this thinking that they are getting it for a good price (v.sneaky, and annoying!). It is currently £5.99 in Argos and is similarly priced in most other shops so do look around if you are interested.
The box says that it is suitable for ages 5+ but my son was 4 when he received it and was still able to play. I would say that that is the lower age range though, so it is probably suitable for ages 4-8, and possibly older.
As my son and I like this game so much, I bought it for a friend's son for Christmas, he seems to like it just as much as we do so it really is an all round winner. And when you factor in the super low price tag, it really is a bargain!
I brought this for my son as a little stocking filler (even though it is much bigger than would fit in a stocking!!) because it was on offer in Woolworths for half price at £4.99. They are currently selling it for £6.29 and even at this slightly higher price I would snap it up as it is a really good game that you can play with your children.
You basically get a shark body, two shark fins, a shark lower jaw and all the items that the shark has swallowed, along with two long fishing hooks in the box. You have to put the shark together before you can start playing but this is certainly no hardship and is simply a case of slotting the fins in either side of the shark's body. You also have to attach the lower jaw via two elastic bands clipped to the jaw and then stretched onto hooks inside the body, which mean the lower jaw can open and close on a spring basis. This is a little fiddly and you will need the fishing hook to help you reach inside, but certainly not too difficult. This is all the assembly needed and would take no more than a few minutes.
The aim of the game is to load the shark's mouth (lower jaw flap) with all the items of paraphernalia and then hook them out one at a time taking it in turns. The player who makes the shark's mouth snap shut while they are picking their item is the loser.
This is such a simple game, following on in the Buckaroo genre. My son was completely bored with Buckaroo though as the donkey never seemed to remain standing too long and would always buck before we had even finished loading the saddle on! The shark was a much preferred animal as well, the ferocity appealing to the mind of a six year old far more than a docile donkey chewing a piece of straw. And in fact he has played with this shark as a shark toy in addition to the actual game it was intended for so it does have diversity on its side too.
I have played countless games of this now since Christmas and the fun of it has not worn off yet. It takes roughly two or three minutes for a game to be finished so it is quick and easy to play several games in between something else. The fact that each game is so short is great for little minds who get bored waiting for their turn. My daughter watches as I play with my son, and she doesn't get the chance to get impatient and moan about wanting her turn which is wonderful. You could play with more than two players, swapping the hooks around, but it is more exciting with only two, as you get to have a turn quicker and you can retrieve more pieces each time.
It is extremely easy to set up as well. We keep the fins in the shark sides all the time, as these are what supports the body in 45 degree angle and it still fits more or less into the box with the fins on. So all that is needed when you want to play, is to chuck all the pieces inside the shark's mouth. Then I hold the mouth closed and tip up the shark so it all falls into his mouth area. Slowly I stand him up and let the mouth fall open, allowing all the pieces to be balanced on the lower jaw, ready for retrieval. My children find this a little difficult to do but my son is starting to get the hang of it, so they can play it themselves without needing me sometimes as well.
We have found that we can use a lot of the pieces from our Buckaroo set in this toy as well, which for us is great, as the smaller pieces do often get lost and as our Buckaroo was broken we have added all those pieces to this game meaning we should stay well loaded for a while yet.
I love the simplicity of Shark Bite and the fun it creates with my kids. My daughter especially loves it when I lose although she seems to accept it pretty well when I don't too. However, for a four year old and a six year old (my kid's ages) it is an excellent way to help fine motor skills as they have to be exceptionally gentle at times and angle the hook into some funny positions to allow for a good grasp on the item they want to pull from the shark's mouth. A steady hand is required at times too so control over what they doing is well practiced.
For £4.99 I think this may be one of the most played games we brought this Christmas and is something I will be happy to replace if it ever gets broken. The only small issue we had when it was new was that the elastic bands used to make the jaw spring shut as the weight is offloaded, were a bit too tight in the beginning. We found the jaw sprang shut after only one or two items had been removed. However after a couple of weeks of continuous playing we found they had stretched enough to allow the game to last longer. We now expect to retrieve around five or six pieces each before the mouth snaps shut. Obviously if the bands ever snap they could be easily replaced as they are simple elastic bands you could purchase in any stationary shop.
Overall, my children and I love this game. It is played frequently and is easy to set up and put away - a bonus on the tidying up front. We actually store everything inside the shark's tummy helping to keep it all together. The length of the game is perfect for keeping it interesting and for the age of my children, when the excitement is in the build up and snap of the jaws.
I would recommend this as a toy for your children to keep but also if they have been invited to a party it makes a perfect, not too expensive, present for another child.
The object of this game is to remove the treasures from the jaws of the shark - but watch out for his teeth, this is one hungry fish!