Fisher-Price Imaginext Ocean Submarine
It's a whole new adventure every time you play. Includes sub, 2 figures, one scuba tank and a pair of scuba fins. Age Range: From 3 years
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Review of "Fisher-Price Imaginext Ocean Submarine"
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Like most parents, I try to find bargains and items reduced in price all year round to set aside as presents for my boys ready for Christmas or birthdays. This toy submarine was one such item, purchased when the sale price rapidly plummeted on Amazon a couple of years ago.
The ProductThis is an attractive fittingly yellow submarine and is part of the extensive Imaginext range from brand leading toy manufacturer, Fisher Price. This is a surprisingly large toy made entirely out of very thick plastic and, thankfully, requires no assembly or setting up prior to its first play - aside from wrestling the toy free from its packaging.
What's IncludedThe set comprises the solidly built large plastic submarine complete with:
- Two plastic torpedoes
- Two small figures
- Removable diving flippers
- Removable scuba diving tank
The diving gear and flippers are interchangeable with both of the figures provided and should fit other figures from the Imaginext range as they all seem to be of standard proportions, complete with large shaped feet that are used to unlock/operate different functions on the sets.
In PlayAlthough this toy is a submarine it is, bizarrely, not actually designed as a bath toy. It is actually intended for use out of water and features wheels underneath to enable this toy to be pushed along carpet or hard surfaces. As the toy is pushed along, the turbine on the rear of the submarine spins around, creating a satisfying whirring noise as it goes. The effect is lessened underwater as the turbine doesn't spin to the same degree and it can't be pushed along in the bath in the same way. The submarine is very heavy and is prone to filling with water and toppling over. This doesn't appear to disappoint my son at all and doesn't lessen his enjoyment of the toy. Ours has been used mainly in the bath rather than as a general toy, which seems more fitting for a submarine. There are no electrical elements and everything is waterproof so there is no obvious reason why it should not be used in this way.
The submarine features a number of doors and roofs to open, to maximise the play value. The interior cabin can be accessed by doors on either side which are easy to open and click back into place. This is useful as when all the doors are closed all the figures and accessories can be stored securely between uses to avoid any of the smaller pieces getting lost.There are rails across each of the door and the hands of each of the characters are flexible and shaped to allow them to cling on to the rails securely, so that the all important rescue or spy missions can be carried out safely. Both arms can be moved independently and the waist is jointed so the figures can be bent over or seated. The figures are a good size for small hands to manipulate easily and to move in and around the submarine.Inside, there is a little seat so that the figures can be positioned inside and the seat can be raised or lowered using the external periscope which is easy to slide up and down. There is also a roof opening so that the figures can be positioned in the look out position and keep a full eye on proceedings from a suitable vantage point.
The best feature is, undoubtedly, the ability to shoot the torpedoes included from the base of the submarine. These kinds of things can often be somewhat of a disappointment but the range on this is actually pretty impressive and the innocuous looking little torpedoes go a long way! Unfortunately, they are small and easy to lose as they inevitably end up under the sofa or behind the toy box. The torpedo shooting function is operated via a dial at the top of the submarine cabin. It can be manually turned but is designed to be rotated by positioning one of the little figures inside the foot holes and twisting. This is a simple manoeuvre for an adult or older child to complete but might be a little tricky for children at the lower age range as the move involves downward pressure at the same time as twisting.
DurabilityThis is made from strong and sturdy plastic and, despite being owned and played with for a couple of years, my son has not managed to cause any damage to any of the doors or openings. Surprisingly, everything remains intact and functional, with no noticeable signs of wear and tear. The only real disadvantage is that the toy can start to smell after water play and I have found it difficult to remove the smell from the interior, having to resort to scrubbing with antibacterial wash and detergents. Fortunately, this doesn't seem to attract that unpleasant black mould or mildew that can afflict many bath toys, even in some of the interior nooks and crannies.
Given the size of some of the small accessories, I would err on the side of caution due to the potential choking hazard and recommend this for children over the age of three. This is great for both practical enjoyment and imaginative play for older children, with my now six year old son happily continuing to play with this at bath time, in conjunction with other toys and figures to create his own bath time adventures.
Price and AvailabilityDespite the popularity of the Imaginext range, this particular submarine no longer seems to be in production. A batman themed penguin style submarine was subsequently introduced to the range but neither version seems to be readily available at present. With an original selling price of around £25, it is still possible to pick up second hand examples of this toy from sites such as eBay. These can sell for anywhere between £5 - £20, depending on factors such as condition and supply and demand. An online search does indicate that this is available new via an independent online toy retailer (snazzytoys.co.uk) for £23.99.
This is a well built and well designed toy that can be used both in and out of the bath. It has enough different features and functions to keep a young child happily engaged and stimulated. Ours has lasted for a couple of years with regular play and is showing no signs of damage or visible wear and tear, despite being used as a bath toy. The only issue is likely to be availability which is a real shame as this is such a fantastic interactive toy.
Product Information : Fisher-Price Imaginext Ocean Submarine
Manufacturer's product descriptionIt's a whole new adventure every time you play. Includes sub, 2 figures, one scuba tank and a pair of scuba fins. Age Range: From 3 years
Type: Water Vehicle
Age: 3 Years +
Listed on Ciao since: 30/06/2010