Tuesday, 21 June 2016

Secret Life of Pets range from Ravensburger

To celebrate the release of the Secret Life of Pets movie Ravensburger has launched a stunning range of four puzzle sets  and a card game. These will undoubtly make great gifts for fans and are suitable for ages 3 and up.

The range includes a 4 in a box set, a XXL100 piece puzzle, a 3 x 49 piece set a 72 piece 3D puzzle and mini memory set.

Featuring characters from the movie puzzlers can enjoy piecing together Max, Duke, Katie, Gidget and more!

This great range of puzzles is perfect for recreating scenes from the movie  and with prices starting at just £5.99 these also make great gifts for any occassion!

Friday, 17 June 2016

Review - Bugs in the Kitchen from Ravensburger

Bugs in the Kitchen is a fun family game for 2-4 players from Ravensburger for ages 6+ RRP £24.99.
Bugs in the kitchen is a hit in the dragon house, and it has a lot to do with the cute little Hexbug. We have loved these little creature from the first time we discovered them, a game with a Hexbug in it was always going to be fun. Anyone who has played with a Hexbug, will have made a maze for it to travel through. Bugs in the kitchen is based on this style of maze, built from knives forks and spoons, simple and lots of fun.
bugs in the kitchen gamebugs in the kitchen
There is very little assembly needed for Bugs in the kitchen, simply insert the plastic knives forks and spoons into the playing board as illustrated in the instructions. Press out the bug tokens and kitchen compartments. There are a few different patterns to start your game then it is time to play and switch on your Hexbug.
bugs in the kitchen review
Bugs in the Kitchen gameplay is simple, take it in turns to roll the dice, move the illustrated part of the maze, and trap the bug at your end of the kitchen to win a bug token. The winner is the first person to collect five bug tokens. Games are fast and full of giggles,lasting 10 – 20 minutes. Everyone who has played this game with us has enjoyed it and even Granny had a fighting chance of winning if she could stop laughing. Bugs in the kitchen requires no great skill, just speed and a little luck that the Hexbug or dice will turn your way.
bugs in the kitchen game
We love Bugs in the Kitchen, and think this game will be a great hit with kids of all ages, and it has already been voted a Toy Testers TV Gold Award- Voted for as the “Most Fun Toy 2014” by children aged 4-15. Little ones can make up teams and work together to capture the most bugs. While the adult wont be able to stop giggling at the frustration as the little Hexbug changes direction at the last-minute. Visit the Ravensburger website for more family fun games.
Review by the Soup Dragron Says..

Monday, 13 June 2016

Review – Ravensburger What If Jigsaw

I’ve always enjoyed doing puzzles and it’s something that over the years I haven’t had much time for.  Jigsaw puzzles have been limited to wooden ones with the children.  After about the age of six the boys have lost interest in doing jigsaws too which I think is a shame.  So when I was asked if we would like to try one of Ravensburger’s What If puzzles I thought it would provide the perfect opportunity to do something together and also reignite the boy’s interest in puzzles.
We were sent The Racehorse which is the 8th puzzle in the What If range.  With 1000 pieces I anticipated it would keep us busy for a couple of hours.  But this is no ordinary jigsaw, the image on the box shows you Jim buying a Racehorse after having a windfall.  He is sure that Contraflow breed by Patrick Wheeler-Deeley’s stable will make him a fortune. Does Contraflow have a special talent?  the picture on the puzzle shows what happened next.
what if
It means that you don’t have an image to follow when completing the jigsaw.  initially I wasn’t sure about it but if you follow the rules of jigsaw which for me means finding all the pieces which have an edge and putting them together.  Then working my way around the centre of the puzzle.   As there is an element of guess-work over the image so it’s not actually straight forward.
what if1
Initially I made a start on the jigsaw and then after twenty minutes Rowan and Trystan came over to see what I was doing.  Trystan then decided he wanted to help and proved to be quite good at spotting where the pieces went as we went along.  Between us we decided to try and separate the pieces into different colours in the hope it would help us fix some one them together correctly.
I had decided to lay the jigsaw out on our wooden storage table which is in our playroom, mainly because I felt it would enable me to leave it out and go back to the jigsaw throughout the weekend.  I’d forgotten how addictive jigsaw can be and I found myself spending almost an hour at a time both on my own and with Trystan working on it.   I also found being able to go away and do something else for a while before returning to it really helped me to complete the jigsaw.  I’m not going to share the finished image with you as I don’t want to spoil it for anyone who wants to give it ago.   By the end of the weekend we had almost completed the puzzle and I am so determined to complete it, there is only one small section left to complete.  Today I have carefully transferred the puzzle to a puzzle board so that I can finish it later in the week when I have a chance.  It also means while I’m working this week I do not need to worry about the little ones disturbing the pieces or any of the pieces being misplaced.
Trystan and I have really enjoyed working on the puzzle over the weekend and It would be lovely if it could become something we do together from time to time.  Ravensburger’s What if? The Racehorse retails at £11.99 and can be bought via amazon here I think we will certainly buy another one of the What If series as it’s a great twist on the classic Jigsaw.

Review by Mum of 3 Boys

Monday, 6 June 2016

I Love London Ravensburger Gift Collection review

 I've just got back from a three-day school trip to London and it was lovely to take in all the sights, despite dragging round 57 grumpy fourteen-year-olds with us and despite the pouring rain ! We managed to fit in a lot (and I'll be sharing some of the snaps with you over the coming days) - a boat trip along the Thames, trips to the Tower of London, Westminster Abbey and the Museum of London, a shopping spree in Covent Garden (the kids' favourite part, obviously !) and finally a trip to Dicken's World in Chatham on the way home.

We managed to spot lots of the unmissable iconic things that London instantly brings to mind for tourists, such as the Queen's Guards and the Beefeaters, Tower Bridge and red double deckers.

There was even a pink one parked up on the South Bank, which the kids took more pictures of than the London Eye which was just a few yards away ! 

They did all take snaps of Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament though, because that was apparently THE London snap that they all had to have !

What I always love about London is the way the old and the new stand side by side, such as The Shard and Southwark Cathedral rising up majestically next to each other.

It was interesting to see which iconic images Ravensburger had picked for the I Love London 170 piece puzzles that they recently sent us to review. The blue box is called London Bobby and features a policeman surrounded by Tower Bridge, The Shard, Westminster Bridge, Big Ben and The Natural History Museum, as well as the classic London black cab and the new Routemaster Bus. In the red box, the London Guardsman puzzle features a Grenadier Guard on duty at Buckingham Palace, alongside The London Eye, the Gherkin, St Paul's Cathedral, Buckingham Palace, a traditional red telephone box and a London tube train. All things that we managed to show to the pupils on our trip so I think we did a pretty good job !

The puzzles measure 15.3 x 36.2cm, have an RRP of £4.99 and as they're only 170 pieces, they're not too challenging, making them a great family activity for a rainy Sunday afternoon. I'll be taking them into school for the end of term so that the pupils can have fun putting them together and remembering the things we saw on our school trip. The scrapbook style of the designs means that they serve as a wonderful souvenir of our time in the capital.

Review by Madhouse Family Reviews 

Tuesday, 31 May 2016

Labyrinth: Family Game by Ravensburger

Labyrinth by ravensburger box
Labyrinth is a great family game that is suitable for 2 to 4 players and is recommended from age 7 and above although Alison who is 6 picked up the game play easily.
Labyrinth is a tile moving puzzle game where the aim is to get to the item on your cards. You can shift a pathway by one tile to try to open a direct route or get as close as you can to the item card you have turned over.
Labyrinth by ravensburger
The winner of the game is the first player to collect all of their object cards and return to their starting space. Younger players can look at all of their object cards and choose which one to go for on each go whereas older players have to go for them one at a time as they turn them over.
Labyrinth by ravensburger lay out

Tuesday, 24 May 2016

Ravensburger African Friends XXL300 Puzzle

So last time you may remember we had a little fun with the What If? Puzzles .
This time it was the kids turn to have a little fun and being that we were sent another of the fantastic Ravensburgers finest we were more than happy to start our new project but I also wanted to join in .

I have come to realise that all the puzzles we seem to be getting lately are rather busy and I am not complaining , I love busy puzzles. It means there are many details , objects , varieties of shades of colour and pattern to work through and to me that means keeping the mind working and thinking which is always a good thing.

This week our family puzzle was the African Friends which was one of the 300XXL puzzles which means less pieces with a bit bigger pieces.

A little smaller than the adult ones we have done previously but no different other than it is a different theme with even more pretty illustrations and colour to work with .

African Friends is one of my favourites so far and although the children wanted to do this one I felt the need to join in too , well it is after all a family thing .

As you can imagine the African Friends is about Africa but not the place as such , its about the Jungle and its beautiful creatures inside it.
Bringing you the most amazing mammals of our world from the Prickly Hedgehog to the most stunning Elephant , African Friends puzzle is a beauty in its self and I for one feel it is more than worthy to be put in a frame after placing together and sharing on our wall for all to see and if costs just short of £10 to buy .
I often find the smaller ones a little more appealing not just for the children but also for us lazy adults who if your like me have been feeling under the weather lately.
With not feeling to great I still wanted to do our puzzles but I was suffering with terrible earache and head cold which made me feel a little all to pot so to speak so doing a puzzle that was not the giant 1000 felt a little relieving this week.
This puzzle Considering this was for the little ones I was actually surprised at how little I knew the animals names , I mean I know the main ones such as the Elephant, monkeys, lions , zebra, giraffe, hippos and such but when it came to the smaller one like the birds I really did not have any idea so I had to look them up which was a little educational trip for me and the little ones .

The puzzle is aimed at children ages 9+ and we found that this was appropriate but as I've expressed previously , I find all puzzles age appropriate unless of course the theme is not suitable so we all tend to join in on even the larger ones.

As with all puzzles we find starting with the edges always makes it an easier start for us and once that was established it all started getting interesting from there.

With all of the different varieties of animal prints we already knew it was easy to give a good understanding to what pieces went with what animal at first but then once those were finished the left overs were a guessing game , unless of course we looked at the box cover which as a personal task we were trying not to .
We love to make little extra challenges for ourselves.

We spent only two evenings enjoying putting this puzzle together , quite fast compared to the 1000 which usually takes us longer .

As always the finish was beautiful and the detail was perfect.

I am wondering what our next weeks puzzle is going to be , anyone want to take a guess?

Review by Beauty and the Prince 

Monday, 23 May 2016

Ravensburger WHAT IF? No.13 - The Safari Park, 1000pc Jigsaw Puzzle

As with all others from the series you approach the compiling of the puzzle without any picture to reference or to guide you. What is different about What If? Is you compile a surprise outcome pictorially of that which appears on the box. So there really is a puzzle to solve! Though if you’d like a picture to help, you can request (by post) a small print. The contact information is on the box

So what happens to the family stuck in their car at the Safari Park? With the car not starting and the wild animals approaching looking and behaving rather ‘beastly’? All I will tell you is that it’s all a bit chaotic and the animals are employed, but not ‘employed’ in making trouble but in something far more entrepreneurial and positive!

A fun, and busy, busy comic illustration from Geoff Tristram for Ravensburger. Some subtle and comical additions appear in both pictures

Review by TSS