One of the Toys high on my 3 childrens Christmas list was Zhu Zhu Hamsters, and as it was something which all three asked for, I thought they were a good idea.
So on Christmas day morning when Santa had been and left a selection of Zhu Zhu hamsters and Kung zhu Hamsters there were three happy children.
I've been meaning to do a review on these toys for a while, and when I heard Toys R us, were holding another competition to find there new 2011 Toyolgists on their facebook page, I thought we would finally get round to reviewing these Christmas toys.
So heres our Review.
The toys we have are:
The Kung Zhu Battle arena : £29.99
The Kung zhu Headquarters : £19.99
Sgt Serge : £9.99
Rocko : £9.99
Kung Zhu Special forces Armour : £9.99 x2 pieces
Kung Zhu Alpha training ground : £14.97
Kung Zhu Bravo Battle training Ground :£14.97
Rockstar Hamster - Pax : £9.99
Rockstar Hamster - kingston : £9.99
Grooming Salon - £19.97
Initially I thought these toys were expensive, and perhaps wouldn't be worth the money. You have to buy several sets to get anything like what is portrayed on the pictures on the boxes, but that being said, the main draw of these toys was the fact that all three children seemed equally interested in them, and this turned out to work as I hoped and every time they play with these toys they do so together happily, the oldest who is 9 now, and the youngest who will be 4 in a few days, all seem to be able to interact with these toys and make up various games to suit their age.
The sets clip together with the same connection mechanism which is simple enough to use, and with or without instructions the sets are easy to piece together, there is no 'right' order to place the different sections of the training grounds so they can be made up into different arenas and create a new game each time. each piece is plastic and sturdy enough, there are a few 'extras' such as flags and guns on the kung zhu sets, and brushes and shampoo bottles in the grooming salon, which are perfect child sized not too small that they get lost straight away! With the Kung Zhu toys, the idea is to set up your arena and training grounds, then place your hamster at the start of your course and watch him make his way over the obstacles and into the main arena, where you can meet with another hamster and they will bump into each other until someone falls over and a winner is found, but my children seem to make up different versions of games each time!
The grooming salon has plenty of features, including a light up mirror and a real spinning fan dryer, which start up when a hamster is clipped into the dryers seat.
The grooming salon also comes with a selection of small brushes and hair dryers and such like which my daughter loves!
All the hamsters take 2 x AAA batteries which come supplied, and as yet we haven't had to replace ours. The hamsters start up when a button on there back is pressed, and they make several sounds and move around, they can go forwards or reverse and turn, they interact with various sections of battle ground or grooming saloon where there are raised areas on the tracks, they also react to the armour when it is placed on the hamsters and then make new sounds.
The hamsters are cute looking handsized toys, and when not in use ours are kept on the window sill, and often get brought into various games even when the battle arena is not set up.
The main downside to the whole zhu zhu range is the overall size of the sets. The grooming salon on its own is an ok size to be left up, but the battle arena and training grounds cover the majority of any of our rooms floor space, so are not kept out set up, therefore in order to play with the toys the children need to first get out and set up the arena, but I think in some ways this is half the fun for the boys as they seem to enjoy re arranging and creating different courses for their hamsters to venture through.
Overall these toys have been played with a fair amount of times, and have been enjoyed by all three children equally, there is plenty of range of sets to occupy any child, it is something which can be added to time and again if you want to, and each time you add a different set you will rejuvenate interest in previous sets. I would definitely recommend the hamsters, they are fun and seem to have a variety of play opportunities as they do not need the sets to be played with. As for spending lots on the whole range of sets I probably won't be adding any more to our collection due to the size of them, but may well increase the collection of hamsters.
hereis our video review: