“ Brand: Diamant „
We started out with Fun Bricks by accident. After a rather unfortunate event at a local store - mouse poo in the baps, I took the remainder of the bag to the shop and demanded a refund. The fellow I gave them too was quite nice, but said the manager would have to refund and took my details. They ended giving me £40 worth of gift certificates and Christmas gifts for each child. One of the gifts was a set of Fun Bricks. In all honesty I wasn't very impressed with the toy itself, but it was a very nice gesture, and I went ahead and gave it to the children. They took to the blocks right away and I was forced to rethink my original opinion of these toys. In fact they loved them so much that I bought a second set, and more recently , when I was looking for a third set I noticed the motorised version and added this to our collection.
Fun Bricks are petty much like Thistle Blocks, Stickle Bricks or Bristle Blocks. They are small plastic shapes which are covered in tiny plastic nubs or bristles. These interlock together much like Velcro. My children do seem fascinated my different textures, and always did like the feel of these. While all of these brands look like basically the same thing, the size and distance between the bristles has to be the same to interlock, so my understanding is that you can not always mix and match sets. This means that since we started with Fun Bricks, we have to stick with this brand, but I've also found this to be the lowest price of this type of toy, so that suits me.
However, being the lowest price among these ranges does not make this toy cheap. In fact I do feel these are overpriced for the number of bricks you get, and the fact that they are just bits of plastic. But considering the vast amounts of time my children have spent playing with these, they clearly see more in the toys than I do, and for the amount of joy these have given, I can not really begrudge the price. Of course that doesn't mean I have to pay full price, I very rarely pay full price for anything. This set sells for £20.37 from Amazon with free delivery. I bought our set from Amazon Warehouse Deals for half the price, without the original box. I just love damaged packaging deals as I wouldn't have kept the box anyway. We keep all of these in a plastic storage box.
There isn't an awful lot to this set. It only has 75 pieces. The main selling point is a big red rectangle with a motorised axle. This opens up to hold 2 AA batteries and means you can build various small vehicles and watch them go. My son however usually has a propeller ( included with this set) attached and is using this as his personal fan - not that he needs one in this weather. It can be made into a toy helicopter - of course it can not fly, but the boys like watching it spin. They also like building robots and tanks with the motorised base and making them crash into things. Surprisingly, they have not made very many cars, trains or more traditional vehicles. I really like the fact that this can be made into so many different things though. I think it is this variety that keeps it from growing old.
As soon as we bought this, it was immediately mixed in with our other two sets, so I can't say anything has really been built using only these blocks. However, there was a air amount of wheels, a few small bases to build vehicles, some rather poor people shapes and various tiny bits. There are enough parts to make a few simple vehicles, but I really don't think this set would be that much fun on its own. Having extra pieces gives the children so much more range to be creative and make different projects, but this is true of any construction set. I will not rate down for this, because all of construction sets, Lego, Duplo, wooden blocks, Magnetix etc.. have so much more play value when you have more than one set.
My sons really do love this set. They love all of their Fun Bricks. My children are now ages 4 and 8, but we have owned the original set for years, since my boys were ages 2 and 5. I would caution that this is intended for ages 3+ and does contain small parts which represent a choking hazard. I do feel that a child's behaviour is more important than age though. If my child were over 3, but still mouthing small toys, I would remove all the small parts or wait until they were older. In this set though, removing all the small parts would leave very few pieces. As my son outgrew trying to eat anything non food at an early age, and he was well supervised, I did allow to him use this at an earlier age. While I would not give the smaller bits to a child who still mouths things, my son did absolutely love the texture of this at a young age and I could see some of the bigger blocks being wonderful for supervised play with babies and toddlers. At age 8, my oldest still really enjoys these toys so I feel there is a wide range of suitable ages, and if this is bought for a younger child it may have many years of use. These do appear to be well made. There is no way to tell the difference between the older and new blocks, they are all in equally good condition.
Both boys think this should have 5 stars, and considering the fact that they have had hours and hours of fun and creative play with these bricks, I will let their rating stand, even if they really do not look all that exciting to me. I do still feel these would be better with extra bricks, and if you decide to buy a non motorised set, I would note that Smyth's Toy Stores sell these for £9.99 for 100 bricks. As much as my children do enjoy this set, I can't say that the motor really adds a great deal to the play value. They do use it, but more often than not, they just build things. I do feel that the 100 piece set has more play value, and costs less, but if you already own a couple of other sets, this is a very nice an add on.