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My sister bought her son this toy for Christmas last year, and I was watching him play with it the other day, and it still confusing me as to how a child can have so much fun with a simple little toy, I always wonder what they are thinking about when they play it. Then again, my nephew says he wants to be a pirate when he grows up so I think that question is answered. She paid £150 for it at Christmas, which I thought was an absolute waste of money when she told me what it was, but when I saw it, I could understand the pricing. It isn't just a small plastic boat, it is so much more. Not only is it a lot bigger than I imagined it to be, but there is much to you can do with it.
First of all, there are lots of little attachments that kids can play with, with windows and doors that can be opened and closed. The ship has parts that can be separated or opened to reveal the inside. I wouldn't recommend playing with it in the bath like my son does with his toy boat, at it is too heavy and would sink to the bottom of the water. Even though, a child would have endless amounts of fun with the Pirates of the Caribbean Ship, with all the realistic features like the way it is shaped the extras such as netting and poles, to be honest a true replica of the actual ship from the film. Definitely go out and buy it, although when I have searched around to get one for my son, who is extremely jealous of his cousin, I haven't been able to source one yet. Will update when I do to tell the location and price.
I have also posted this review on Ciao-under the name Passion10
I bought the Mega blocks Pirates of the Caribbean Black Pearl for my son for his third Birthday. It came in a huge box so it looked very impressive all wrapped up when he got up. It took a long time to assemble it, which I had to do myself as my son is three and my husband is an academic and not remotely practical. It took me a few hours the next evening to build the ship and the extras that came with it, it took my son a few minutes, the following day, to destroy all my hard work.
It was quite a surprise to open the box and pull out everything that was featured on the box and more. I wasn't really expecting this as when you normally see a scene on a box you only get the main part of the scene and the extras are for illustration only. With the ship there was also two kind of islands, a rowing boat, a giant squid and various figures and barrels, skulls and general pirate trappings.
The ship is simple to build, I think I spent most of the time finding the parts in all the other stuff that was there. It can be fiddly at times but the instructions are clear and easy to understand. It's not that sturdy once built, well not for a three year old, but for a six or seven year old it may be better, although I think it would still come apart fairly easily. I might glue it together before I get it out next time and use it as a toy rather than a lego type toy. The detail on the ship id very good and it looks hugely impressive.
The islands are a quick build but they too come apart easily, I think these could do with gluing.
The squid is brilliant, it's made out of rubber but put together the same way as lego, there are lego attachments on it's tentacles so that the little figures and various other stuff can be attached to it in preparation of being dragged into the depths.
The other stuff that came with it the figure and such are very good likenesses to the characters in the film. There are a few Jack Sparrows in the figures and I think more than twenty figures, although I haven't counted, My son had fun role playing with these and the treasure chest and the rowing boat after he had destroyed the ship. The cannons were really good fun as they actually fire cannon balls out and can be used in a battle with a noahs ark (this is the nearest we had to another ship).
All in all an impressive looking thing once built with very good details on it but fragile and easily disassembled during the course of play so this is a little disappointing. There were a lot of extras with the ship which were more fun for my three year old than the actual ship. The squid scared a few of his friends when they came to visit so maybe it's not for timid children. I don't think it's really suitable for the under sixes due to the ease of the ship breaking up during play but if glued together it would be better. I paid £15 for it in the sale I think it should have been about £40. Once the main ship is glued together I think it will represent really good value at the moment though it's hidden in a drawer having frustrated my son so much by continuously breaking up.
The Pirates of the Caribbean Black Pearl Pirate Ship is available as end-of-line stock from a few places for a bargain price these days. The Bargain Warehouse have it on sale for only £45 as their normal selling price! When this was new in the shops, it retailed for nearly £100 and that doesn't include any figures even.
The box that this comes in is absolutely huge. It's about a meter long, and a good size round. There's quite a lot of assembly that goes into this, unfortunately, so you have to be prepared to put in a good hour of construction time before this toy is ready to be played with.
There are some reasons for the construction being so necessary, including lots of special additional features. This ship has got lots of great interactive features included such as a trap door or two, lots of windows, doors and cells that open, and little cannons that actually fire. There's also a few sections of ship that open up, and some dualling discs too. To use the duelling discs, you just stand a couple of characters on them, and spin the cogs that poke out of the side of the ship to make the characters appear to really duel. On top of that, if you put some batteries in, you can get lots of little sound effects from the various buttons around the helm too. The sound effects are all in clear, reasonably loud authentic pirate accents which I thought was good.
There are absolutely loads of features included in this ship, and although £45 sounds like a lot of money, it's actually a very reasonable price for a large play set that comes with as many features and special functions as this does. There are definitely a good few drawbacks to consider though, the first of which is that you have to buy the characters seperately. Thankfully these can be picked up quite cheaply since the theme has declined in popularity, but you do have to look around (especially to places like ebay).
Also, the nets that attach to the mast will just not stay together at all, and one of the masts doesn't want to stay erect. If you want these bits to stay put, you have to glue them, and this then means that you can't fully disassemble the toy to put it away. As it's such a big toy, this is a bit annoying. You really want to be able to break it into parts and put it away after use, and you can't do that if you've glued it can you?
Other than that, this is a lovely play set that offers amazing value for money. I think most little boys between about six and ten years would be thrilled to receive this as a present. It's definitely not for younger tots due to all the small, fiddly parts involved, and all the special features will make it a playset that hopefully appeals to the slightly older child. Really this deserves three and a half stars, so I've gone for four to err on the generous side. For the price, you can't grumble a lot even if you use it with the mast down.