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Our household seems to have a ridiculous amount of board games available, the latest addition to our collection being Pirahna Panic. My mum's excuse for buying this one to add to the collection was that it looked unique to all the other ones around and the fact that it didn't need batteries was definitely a plus.
The game can be picked up for around £13 - £15 in stores like Toys R Us or Argos, however I've also seen it on websites such as Amazon for the same price. It's rated for those above 6 years old, and I'd say it could be played with those who are younger as it does get quite simple once you grasp how to play. Between 2 - 4 players can play the game, which makes it a great family game or just one that children can play with friends.
The box itself is quite big, however it also is sturdy so there hasn't been any issues with it breaking or the pieces falling out. In the box you get:
- 16 marbles - There is 12 marbles with pictures of 4 types of fish in and then 4 marbles with pictures of piranha's in. They look quite cute actually, however you have to make sure they don't get lost like most tiny pieces in board games.
-1 dice - not the typical dice it has the numbers 1 and 2 on two sides of it, a fish on one and a piranha on another.
-The board and it's pieces - the area where you play the game consists of 4 pieces which you have to click together. The set up of this part is quite easy and doesn't take that long. There is the main board which has 20 slots for marbles which can move to show individual piranhas in each of the spaces and 4 spaces for the bigger marbles I spoke about earlier. Then below this board is a tray which collects marbles that fall through. Attached to these sections is the backboard and legs that add a bit of decoration to the board and raise it up.
The main aim of the game is to get your group of fish marbles safe before a pirahna pops up and eats it. Each player takes three marbles which each have the same fish design and then pick a colum on the board for which they'll play in. Then you use the dice and if a 1 or 2 rolls you move to that slot in the colum you've picked. When a fish rolls, you have to miss a turn and then if a pirahna rolls you have to roll the dice to see what pirahnas go into the game board. The pirahnas are then released into the gameboard and if they hit a person's fish they have to start all over again. The main aim is to get your fish to the top of the board.
The gameplay is relatively simple to grasp, and my younger sister understood it fine. I find it better to play with the maximum number of 4 players, However, while the gameplay is quite simple, this can also be a downfall of it, as it means that sometimes a game will finish really quickly or just be quite dull.
It does have a unique feel to it as I don't think there are many games like this around, however it probably isn't the best one in our collection. I do think it is great on a rainy day or just to spend 15 or 20 minutes on, as it's not too complicated and is fun.
Overall, this is a fun game despite the fact that sometimes it can be slow. I prefer playing with 4 players as does my sister, because it makes it much more enjoyable and last longer. However, unlike some board games, I like it's unique look and the fact it doesn't take ages to set up!
Now, here's a game I bought for my son quite a few years back, I remember it was the day he broke up for the summer holidays and the children had all been allowed to take a game to play at school. He came home that day raving about this game a friend of his had bought in "Piranha Panic" I'd never even heard of it before, anyway I kept the game in mind and as his birthday was in September I decided to see if I could get him this game that he so badly wanted. I checked out the Argos website and reserved one, for me to pick up the following day for £16.79 from my local Argos store, I put it away for him until his birthday.
Piranha Panic was produced and distributed by a company called Mattel, here is Some Mattel History
Mattel are a huge toy company and have been around since 1945, during this time they have produced many great toys and games. In 1959 the Barbie doll was introduced, she was introduced by a woman called Ruth Handler, who named the doll after her own daughter Barbara, who's nick name was Barbie. In 1960 Mattel became a publicly owned company then later in 1961 Barbie's boyfriend Ken was introduced. In 1965 Mattel entered the educational market, producing the "See and Say" talking toy.
It wasn't until 1977 when Mattel decided to venture into electronic games. The next big hit for Mattel was He Man in 1982. The sales for He Man action figures out did the Barbie doll with over 200 million pounds worth of sales by 1985. In 1989 they acquired Corgi games Ltd. In 1993 Fisher Price joined them, a year later they were joined by Kransco and J W Spear and sons. 1995, Mattel acquired the rights to manufacture and distribute "The Cabbage Patch Kids". 1996 saw the "Tickle me Elmo" craze begin, this being one of the biggest toy crazes of the decade. 1998 saw Mattel taking over the infant and preschool character brands toy line. This year also saw them purchasing Blue bird Toys Plc. The current license holder of "Polly Pocket".
In the year 2000 Mattel were granted the licensing agreement for Harry Potter TM.
In 2002 the Co founder for Mattel, Ruth Handler, the creator of the Barbie doll, died aged 85.
The Mattel company have gone from strength to strength, I haven't mentioned all of Mattel's achievements since they launched in 1945, but I have given you a good idea of their ever growing success as a toy company.
This is a game of luck rather than skill, the aim of the game is to escape the jaws of the piranhas.
16 marbles: These include 12 small marbles, these are split into four different groups, each group of three marbles have a picture of the same fish inside them, this enables four people to play the game at once. The remaining four marbles are much bigger and these contain a picture of a piranha inside.
5 game board components: These are the five individual pieces of the game that fix together to make up the game, so your ready to play. These consist of:
1. The main game piece: This is a plastic rectangular shape compromising of 20 evenly placed marble slots, which swing round to reveal 20 individual piranhas. at the top of the rectangular game piece are four spaces in which to place the four big piranha marbles, this is actually one piece that is attached to a little lever at the side of the board, used to release the piranha marbles. At the very top of the board is a space in which you put your fish marbles that have made it to safety.
2. A plastic tray: This attaches to the bottom of the main board piece, this is used to collect the marbles that fall through once a piranha is revealed on the main board piece.
3. The back board: This piece simply slots into place at the top of the main game board piece. This is just for decoration as it sports a picture of the fish and piranhas.
4 and 5. The feet: These pieces are exactly the same they are slotted into the main board piece underneath, in order to raise the top end so the whole game slants downwards.
One dice: Which displays the number 1 on two sides the number 2 on two sides a fish on one side and a piranha on the other side.
An instruction sheet, telling you how to assemble and play the game.
How to play
Each player takes three of the same fish marbles, and chooses a column in which they want to play. The idea is to get your three fish marbles to safety before the piranhas get them.
Youngest player goes first and that player then rolls the dice. If a 1 or 2 is rolled one of their marble fish are placed in either the first or second slot in their column, depending on what was rolled. If a fish is rolled, a turn is missed, if the piranha is rolled, that player must roll again to establish how many piranhas are to be placed in the orange slots at the top of the game board which is connected to the lever, that they then pull to release the piranha marbles which, once released will fall through knocking several of the piranhas round on the game board knocking some, if any of everyone else's marble fish off the board so they have to start again. If a blue fish is rolled after the piranha has been rolled the piranha is cancelled out for that turn.
Play continues with the next player rolling the dice and so on. You play by getting them to the top, one marble fish at a time The first player to get all three fish marbles safe at the top of the game board, wins the game.
Piranha Panic is for children aged 5+ for 2 to 4 players, currently being sold at Argos for only £8.99
Our experience and my opinion.
I got this game for my son quite a while ago, but he does still play it from time to time, he was thrilled when he found out this game was amongst his birthday presents. We have all had a lot of fun playing this game together. After several years, it is still in excellent condition, no pieces have been lost including the marbles which surprises me somewhat, so the longevity of this product, in my opinion is excellent. The game is also very well made and stands rather sturdily once fixed together, which incidentally is very simple to do.
What makes this game more appealing to me, is the fact of not having to spend hours assembling and placing stickers, this is one of my pet hates of children's toys these days, it always takes so much time to put all the stickers on correctly, and if you don't do this before you wrap the gift for the child you intend to give it to, they get rather frustrated and impatient, whilst waiting for you to put them all on. So this game is a big plus for me, as you can play more or less as soon as it comes out the box. The box states the game is for 5+ but I think older children can enjoy this game also, it's very easy to get the hang of and it actually works when you pull the lever to release the piranhas, not like some games, where you can spend ages assembling it, only to find some parts don't work as they should once your ready to play the game.
My son has been enjoying the fact that I am reviewing some of his older toys and games that have been put away for a while, as I have dragged them out, this has encouraged him to want to play with them again, and because most of his toys and games have been kept in such good condition, they are all still playable with the various different pieces all present and intact. Not only do I put this down to them being well looked after but also to the company brands I choose to buy from.
I have to admit I've found Mattel games are always of good quality and it is most definitely a brand I trust and would recommend. By reading the history section at the beginning of my review you can see for yourself just how well Mattel have done over the years and their success just continues as the years move on.
I'm giving Piranha Panic 5 stars because I think it's an all round winner.
Thank you for reading my review also posted on Ciao
Piranha Panic from Mattel is a fun simple game for up to four players and is suitable for 5+ years.
This comes in a very eye catching box as you can see above so won't bore you with the details of it.
Basically, the aim of the game is to get your four fish marbles to swim upstream towards the 'safe area' without getting eaten by the hungry piranhas that lurk beneath the water!
This game comes with 12 small marbles with four sets of different coloured fish on and a die with 1, 2, a blue fish (who is friendly but basically means miss a turn) and of course a piranha together with four larger marbles that contain the piranhas themselves.
If you roll a number you can advance up stream that number. If you roll a blue fish, you stop to chat to him and so miss your turn and if you roll a piranha you have to roll again to find out your fate - the friendly blue fish will keep you safe, a number will mean that either 1 or 2 piranhas will swim downstream and a piranha means that all 4 piranhas will swim and that mean PIRANHA panic. You must pull the orange level and see where the piranhas will strike! (They do this when the marble rolls under the space and flips it over so that the piranhas are revealed and means your fish marble rolls back to the bottom. You may stay safe, your opponents may not - you may all stay safe or all need to start the treacherous journey again! This is what makes it fun - the unpredictability!!
The first person to get all their marbles to the safe area wins!
My five and six year old love this game and it is fun to play. The only down side is there is a question mark over it's durability. One of the piranha fish came off and although they appear to just slot on, it keeps coming off every now and then.
I would highly recommend this game as there is always laughter and screams whenever it is played and it's nice to see your children get so animated over it! It is easy to assemble, widely available at all good toy stores and retails for around £25.
Mattel's Piranha Panic was greatly advertised on Channel five's milkshake show every morning in the run up to christmas and my daughter always followed the advert by 'I want that' !!
I didnt take much notice as she said this after most adverts but on a trip to see Santa in December she asked it of Santa!
So, two weeks before christmas began the hunt for Piranha Panic. Searching online the prices varied from £19.99 to £26.99 but in these days of online shopping Im becoming quite reluctant to buy anything full price.
It was by a mere fluke that I found the desired game on a food shop trip to Tesco. Priced at £16.99 I was glad that I hadnt dragged my daughter to the supermarket on this particular trip.
Christmas was a hit in out house as everyone got what they'd asked for. My daughter is still only four so Im getting away with pressies from Santa for under twenty quid!
Before the other presents were unwrapped my daughter wanted to play with her new game so came a frantic rush to assemble and read the instructions!
Pirannah Panic is by Mattel and comes in sturdy decent sized box with a bright cartoon like design all around.
In the box I found a sloped Piranha Panic tray which came in 4 pieces, 2 legs, a back board and a marble catch tray, these all snapped together easily. There were then also 12 marble shaped fish ( 3 each of yellow, orange, purple and green ) 4 large Piranha marbles and a special die that is required for the game.
THe game is for up to four players but can be played with as much fun with just the two players. Each player must decide which colour they want to be and retrieve their three respective coloured 'fish'. By taking it in turns to roll the die the object of the game is to 'swim' your three fish up into the safe area at the topof the slope. Obviously it wouldnt be much of a game without the 'perils' that you will encounter!
THe die is numbered only with a '1' and a '2' as there are only five steps on the slope to reach the top. There is then also a fish pictured side which is a safe side to roll or the all important piranha side to the die. If a piranha is rolled then the played must re throw the dice. Depending on what number they roll next, this is the number of large piranha marbles that need to be placed on the top of the slope. If another Piranha is rolled then all four piranhas are let loose. Pull the arm on the side of the slope and P I R A N A H P A N I C !!! These piranha marbles will take out various fish swimming up the slope so be aware !! The players whose fish are 'eaten' must re-start that piece again from the bottom of the slope. The winning player is the person to get all their three fish to safety in the safety zone.
This game can get extremely noisy ! THe marbles crashing down the slope and the wails from the players that loose their fish make this a noisy game thatll be sure to wake a snoozing grandad!
THe game was easy to assemble and required no tools or batteries. THe instructions are in five different languages and are easy to follow. THe game is made from colourful strong plastic and seems durable. It is recommended for ages 5+ but my four year old picked it up really quickly. Weve played it with her cousins aged 5 and 8 and its been quite a hit. Weve also played it with the grandparents are they are SO competitive!
I find it a little infuriating that the little ones purposely want to roll a piranha but it seems to tickle them. A game can take anything from 5 minutes to around 20, depending on amount of players and obviously how often the piranhas take away your fish.
The one thing that annoys me is that it doesnt fit back into the box unless you take apart the slope. Its also a little hard to keep track of all the marbles as the game would be rendered useless without them all really.
My daughter obviously saw something about this that caught her eye in the adverts and it really didnt disappoint. A great unisex game for players aged 4 to 64 !