Wednesday, 26 September 2012

Toyologist Review: Rhyme Robber

What's the most annoying show on television? Big Brother? No. I like that show. Not that I watch it, I just like the fact that a bunch of really annoying people are locked up for a couple of months. Suddenly the world seems a little more pleasant. At least until eviction shows...

I could list a bunch of other things on TV I don't like, but the clear winner is Rhyme Rocket. I really, really hate that show. There's a lot of good stuff on Cbeebies - Justin, Octonauts, the endless repeats of Come Outside - but I cannot stand Rhyme Rocket. It makes me want to put my finger into my eye and swirl it around.

If only I could turn the thing off.

But I can't, because my 3 year old loves the show.


Here's a game that's perfect for lovers of Rhyme Rocket: Rhyme Robber. Actually, I think 'Rhyme Robber' was something of a missed opportunity when it came to naming. The alliteration is nice, but, well, shouldn't this game have been called something like 'Rhyme Crime'?

Hmm, I ought to copyright that.

But on with the show...

For a 5-9 year old game, the box strikes me as a little 'babyish'. It seems more like 3 year old game artwork, but maybe that's just me. Maybe that's why I had trouble getting my 5 year old to play. I tried, I really tried but he simply wasn't interested.

The Rocket-loving 3 year old was, however.

We had to modify the rules a bit, but it didn't take long before he caught on to what rhyming was and he started to match up some of the cards and pile them on his robber. Some were a bit tricky for him to suss out from the picture alone and needed someone with reading-ability to tell him what the picture was supposed to represent (he thought the picture of a foot was 'foot', not 'heel' for example) but he did pretty well on his own.

The playing pieces are on nice thick card which will take a hammering before showing signs of wear. Pieces were in the hands of my (almost) 2 year old for several minutes and she wasn't able to destroy them in that time. Which is pretty good going indeed.

The advice on the box is 5-9 years. I think you'll have trouble convincing a 9 year old to play. My 5 year old thought it was a bit too much like something he'd do at school. 'I've got school tomorrow,' he said, 'can I play cars now?' It seemed foolish to force him to play a game when he didn't want to, so off he went. If he'd stuck around longer I'm sure he'd have enjoyed the 'stealing' aspect of the game, which is sure to be a big attraction for mean older brothers who like taking things away from siblings with a smug look on their faces.

It's the addition of this thievery which makes what could have been a fairly dull rhyming game into something a lot more exciting and spread the appeal to those children who might otherwise have not been interested in an English lesson.

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