Monday, 22 August 2016

Review: Ravensburger Dora and Friends 3 x 49pc Puzzles

LP and Little Man love puzzles – and they love Dora the Explorer so when we were sent the set of three Dora puzzles from Ravensburger they couldn’t wait to make them.
The Dora Puzzles are aimed at age five and over which is perfect for LP and although Little Man is only three he is amazing at jigsaws and we’re always looking for more that test him a bit more which these are perfect for.
The set of puzzles has three clearly different jigsaws, each one with a different colour border, a different picture and different designs on the back – making it easier to differentiate between the three jigsaws and find pieces for the jigsaw you’re working on.
The set of puzzles also comes with paper versions of the completed puzzles that are great for reference rather than just looking at the box constantly. It also means LP and Little Man can do a jigsaw each in different places without fighting over the picture on the box.
The three jigsaw are well made and a good size. Although each one has 49 pieces they are still nice size pieces, easy for the children to hold and put together. LP and Little Man both really enjoyed these jigsaws, liked pointing out their favourite Dora characters and loved the bright colours of the jigsaws.
The Ravensburger Dora 3 x 49pc Puzzles have an RRP of £5.99
Review by Donna 

Monday, 15 August 2016

Emoji Puzzle review

Here is one of the latest puzzles that we have from Ravensburger. 

It contains 100 pieces which are fairly large as far as puzzles of this sort go. It is designed for kids in mind ages 6 and over. Me and Ryan completed it together and I have to admit I actually enjoyed this one more than the bigger 1000 piece ones (but it is a bit easier).

Ravensburger childrens puzzles such as this one come with perfect age fit which means ideal piece sizes, counts and images per age. The pieces get smaller as the children get older and there are more of them too. I’m not sure how many 6 year olds would beable to complete the emoji puzzle or how long it would take them, but me and Ryan managed it in about 20 minutes.

The finished puzzle image is full of emojis – you know; those smiley faces and other small things you find at the end of txt messages! The smiley faces also remind me of my old raving days too. 

This puzzle gets complicated because there is just so much going on. It’s best to try and work out an order in which to attempt the puzzle. For us; it was edges and straight bits first. 

Then we located the four large image pieces which are smiley faces a heart and heart playing card. We made each of these pieces and connected to the edging where we could.

Then finally the slightly tricky part was just finding where the rest of it went. Looking at the image on the box sort of messes up the eyes after a while so it’s more a case of just trying to work out what piece fits where. 

And here is the finished piece! 

A rather fun but confusing puzzle we thought, with so many emojis to be spotted.

The RRP for this is just £7.99 from toy stores and Amazon.

Review by Evette

Tuesday, 9 August 2016

Ravensburger ScienceX Prehistoric Expedition Activity Set

If you have a budding Palaeontologist like my son Mark, then you need to have a look at the Ravensburger ScienceX Prehistoric Expedition Activity Set. The set is bustling with loads of activities to keep dinosaur lovers amused…
ravensburger science x prehistoric expedition set
Included in the set is:
Tyrannosaurus Rex model parts. Meganeura Model parts, magnifying glass, Ammonite, Thermometer, Excavation Tool, Excavation Block, Triop Basin, moulds, Plaster, Sand, Triop eggs and Triop Food.
prehistoric expedition contents
There is also the most amazing 42 page book included too.
prehistoric reading
The book is amazing, it not only has the instructions for all tasks included inside, but it is a wealth of knowledge with facts, explanations and even a glossary too. It really is a prehistoric treat!
Now I have to say, this set is not a quick activity toy, it is a serious set which involves some degree of patience. However, that being said you can easily split the activities up and do them individually if your child has a poor attention span, but you never know, if they like dinosaurs then it may just grasp their attention and surprise you.
So our first activity was…
Cretaceous: The Deadly Tyrannosaurus Rex. You get included in the set, the pieces that you need to build your very own T-Rex model
prehistoric t rex pieces
and he is totally impressive once built…
prehistoric t rex
They say you can use glue as optional, but we haven’t needed to, he is sturdy enough to stand alone. The facts included in the instructions have been great, telling you how big they were, how much they weighed and even talks about why they are extinct. There is so much knowledge in this book, it really is something that you will keep coming back to.
Next up was creating our models from plaster. We created Ordovician, Devonian, Cambrian, Triassic and Jurassic. The mould comes included in the set, and it was really easy to mix the plaster provided with water and pour into the mould. Again, there is so much information given in the box, each different subject is split up so you can make the models separate, we decided however to make all the models and then discuss them once they were dried and we could touch them.
plaster of paris dinosaur moulding
The end results are amazing!
dinosaur painting
We even decided to paint them while discussing what happened to each one. There is a question at the end of each one, and the answers are in the back. But I found this a great way to engage with Mark and get his imagination going too, even if it wasn’t the right answer, it gave us some great conversations.
The last activity that we have completed was our Excavation! This comes included in the box, along with a tool too. It is super exciting as you have no idea what is going to be inside. There is great guidelines to read that gives you tips and hints how best to excavate.  After all, all the best Palaeontologist’s started somewhere…
dinosaur excavation
There is other activities included in the set too, we are yet to start our Triop growing, but this looks great fun and I love that the plastic base inside the box creates the actual basin too! Again there is so much information in the book about this, it will be great to watch them grow. Once they are growing there is more activities too, such as looking for their eggs, carrying out a science experiment to see how they react to light and even finding out what their favourite snacks are.
This set really is a budding palaeontologists dream, it has everything you need to clue yourself up on everything dinosaur and prehistoric related. It is priced at RRP £29.99, which is a great price. It is not a quick five minute toy, it is a real life activity set that creates hours of enjoyment, I am sure you won’t be disappointed.

Review by Danielle

Friday, 5 August 2016

Happy Days, Edinburgh

I love a pretty picture when it comes to puzzles and the Ravensburger Days out selection have a wide variety of different scenes in which I would wish to be inside.

In my last Happy Days out puzzle I took a long visit to London and this time we travel to Scotland .

 Happy Days Edinburgh shows us the tourist attraction that is The Royal Scotland Acadamy and you get to see a vibrant tourism hot spot as the people walk down Princes Street with a player of the pipes on the side walk.
With the flags flying high on the beautiful buildings , the day is sunny and picturesque and makes us all want to visit this location to just hope we get the same image in our minds . It almost feels as if we are there ourselves.

The Happy Days Selection from Ravensburger are a relaxing puzzle to enjoy building and are wonderful if used as displayed on your home walls if desired.

​You can buy these puzzles for £12.99.
Review by Lisa 

Tuesday, 2 August 2016

Ravensburger Disney Frozen Race to The Palace Game review

As a family we love board games and puzzles. Playing a board game can be quality time together where we can enjoy simple fun and ditch the tablets and TV for awhile.

A big selection of the puzzles in the house that we love come courtesy of Ravensburger so when we were recently sent one of their games we were excited to give it a go.

The Ravensburger Disney Frozen Race to The Palace Game is aimed at little ones aged 5 years + and designed for 2 to 4 players.

The game includes -
* 1 game board – it comes as 4 separate pieces that are connected together to make the game board
* 5 character playing pieces
* 4 character chips
* 3 dice

How to play

1. Connect the board pieces together and add the stands to the character playing pieces

2. Place all the character playing pieces on the bottom of the board no matter how many players are playing. Then each player takes a character chip that is laying face down and keeps the character selected hidden so nobody sees who you have got.

3. Starting with the youngest roll the three dice and then move the character that corresponds to the colour and numbers on the dice. For example, if there is 2, 1 and yellow you would move the yellow character (Olaf) forward 3 spaces. If the white colour is rolled the player can decide to move any of the characters on the board. If the character piece lands on select spaces on the board the character has to either move back or is magically moved forward.

4. Continue up the board until one character playing piece has reached the castle, the player with that character chip them wins and if playing with less players and nobody has that character chip the player who moved the winning character piece wins. However, should Hans reach the castle first you all lose.

As a fan of Frozen Bug was excited about playing the game and he loved that key characters from the film were on the playing pieces.

The character pieces and chips are vibrant and the figures and faces are of high quality with keen attention to detail.

I appreciate the fact that the game board can be broken down to make storing it easier and more compact. However when Bug was playing the game with friends all of whom were getting a tad overexcited the game board pieces did not stay connected all that well at times but this did not affect the enjoyment or game play and with calmer play it did not happen.

After a quick read of the instructions and a little test game, the whole family quickly learnt how the game worked with Bug at 5 years easily understanding the game-play.

The game is great for helping develop manual dexterity, hand-eye co-ordination and encouraging simple maths with the addition and subtraction of numbers rolled on the dice to figure out how many spaces the pieces need to be moved.

Bug loves this game and I can't see him 'letting it go' from his games and puzzles collection any time soon.

The Ravensburger Disney Frozen Race to The Palace Game is available to buy from Amazon and all other good toy retailers priced at £9.99 (RRP).

Review by Where Roots and Wings Entwine

Monday, 25 July 2016

Ravensburger Finding Dory 3D and Giant Floor Puzzles

A few weeks ago we were sent the 60-piece Finding Dory Giant Floor Puzzle and the 72-piece Finding Dory 3D puzzle both by Ravensburger and the Beans couldn’t wait to get started on them.  All of the Beans have always been keen puzzlers and I think it’s a great past-time for them to enjoy because they have to think about what they are doing and it’s great for their motor skills too.
Finding Dory Puzzles
We haven’t actually seen the film Finding Dory yet but they are all fans of Finding Nemo so it didn’t matter to them, they all knew who Dory was.  The colours in the puzzles are beautiful, so bright and cheerful, exactly how you imagine a coral reef to be.  If you do have a Finding Dory fan then both of these puzzles would make a lovely unique gift and both priced at £9.99 they won’t break the bank either.

Finding Dory 3D Puzzle

Enjoy piecing together this highly detailed plastic 3D puzzle that has been cut into 72 shaped pieces. All of the pieces fit together perfectly to form a strong and sturdy spherical puzzle. Featuring a beautifully coloured scene from the Great Barrier Reef, piece together Dory, Marlin, Hank, Destiny and Bailey. 3D plastic jigsaws are perfect for any fan aged 6 and up. Comes with a plastic stand so you can place your completed 3D puzzle on display in your room for everyone to admire! Measures 13cm in diameter when complete.
When I opened the box I (wrongly) assumed that the Beans wouldn’t have the patience but I should have given them more credit.  Little Bean was about to head out to Brownies when the puzzles arrived so she was only able to help Beanie Boy make a start on the 3D puzzle before she had to leave.  The puzzle pieces are made from a tough curved plastic and each piece has a number on the reverse.  You can do the puzzle traditionally by working solely from the picture on the pieces or you can follow the numbers on the inside which have little arrows pointing you in the direction of where the next numbered piece needs to attach.  They decided to follow the numbered pieces.
Finding Dory puzzles
This is where Beanie Boy really surprised me because although he has been learning numbers in Reception class I didn’t expect him to be able to follow the numbers all the way to 72, but follow them he did and he did an amazing job so I was very proud of his efforts.
Dory 3
The only time he asked me for any help was right at the very end to put in the last 3-4 pieces as he found this a little fiddly, though he did insist that he pushed in the very last piece (just like his Mum – I always want to put the last piece in too).  The end result is a beautiful, bright Finding Dory globe complete with a stand for it to be displayed on.

Finding Dory Giant Floor Puzzle

Set deep in the Great Barrier Reef, follow Dory as she goes on an unforgettable adventure to find her parents. Will she remember everything along the way? This stunning 35 piece puzzle, is perfect for children 3 years and over, who enjoy a challenging puzzle. Featuring colourful characters from the movie, piece together a fantastic group image of Dory, Nemo, Hank, Marlin, Destiny and Bailey. The puzzle measures 26 x 18cm when complete and is suitable for children aged 3 years and up.
On Jelly Bean’s days at home with me you will often find us doing puzzles, he will disappear into the playroom and come back armed with a pile of puzzles for us to complete on the kitchen or lounge floor.  Up until now he has been doing puzzles of around 20-30 pieces so I was a little worried that this 60 piece puzzle might be a little too big for him.
Dory 2
I helped Jelly Bean to create the outside frame of the puzzle first as he can sometimes find this a little bit tricky but once the frame was done he pretty much asked me to leave him alone.  Every now and then he would say “can’t find it Mummy” and I would help him to find a specific piece but each time he knew exactly what he was looking for.
Dory 4
The puzzle pieces are all a great size for little fingers and are robust enough to stand up to their less-than-gentle ways.  They are made from premium grade cardboard and finished with linen finish print to minimise glare on the puzzle image.  It probably took Jelly Bean a little over half an hour to complete the Finding Dory Giant Floor Puzzle and I was super impressed.  Since completing it the first time he has probably done this puzzle another 5-6 times and particularly likes to show off to family members how clever he can be.

Monday, 18 July 2016


BFG Big Friendly Giant is the forthcoming adaptation of Roald Dahl’s children’s classic to CGI film and it’s out just in time for the summer holidays!  To celebrate this new film, Ravensburger has launched this XXL 100 piece puzzle for your little fan to enjoy.  This is suitable for children aged 6 and above.
BFG 100XXL Ravensburger PuzzleThis brand new puzzle features the two main characters: the feet of Big Friendly Giant and ten year old Sophie standing on his shoe.  This puzzle comes in three tones of colours.  My children did struggle slightly to do this puzzle.  It is definitely a new challenge for them.  It measures 49.3 cm by 36.2 cm when complete in Portrait.  If you have a big fan of puzzles, I’m sure they will love this puzzle.  This is available to buy on Amazon.
This is our fifth time reviewing Ravensburger puzzles. We had similar Ravensburger puzzles before, with Zootropolis, The Muppets, Big hero 6 and How To Train Your Dragon 2.  Again, we are very impressed with the quality of this one.  The pieces are chunky for young children to hold and piece together.
This picture is simple yet stunning with its colours.  Both my children enjoyed and find it challenging to piece it together and it was a nice distraction from their usual electronic toys.  The pieces have a matt finish and are thick, strong and easy to join up. The only problem is that there are a lots of blue bits coming off the backing which seems to happen with all the puzzle sets.  Once the bits are brushed off, it is fine afterwards. The puzzles can be done over and over again and kept safely in its box when not required.  We had to disassemble it as we don’t have space to keep it out.  We love doing jigsaw puzzles at home as they are a great work out for the brain and can be beneficial for improving problem solving, motor skills and eye co-ordination for children and adults.  This BFG puzzle is a lovely puzzle that we will do again and again in future.  Do check them out on Twitter @RavensburgerPC as they regularly host giveaways!
BFG Ravensburger puzzle 100xxlWe all can’t wait to catch this classic story by Roald Dahl!  It follows the adventure of ten year old Sophie when she meets the Big Friendly Giant who is actually quite gentle and charming.  As their friendship grows, Sophie’s presence attracts the unwanted attention of Bloodbottler, Fleshlumpeater and other giants.  After traveling to London, Sophie and the BFG must convince Queen Victoria to help them get rid of all the bad giants once and for all.
Review by Eileen