We were really thrilled to be asked to review a new game from Drumond Park. Released in September 2012, Spin Mania is an action game for children which combines the skill of plate spinning and the intensity of an against the clock challenge!
For 2 or more players, Spin Mania is aimed at children aged 6+ and has an RRP of £22.99. In the box you get the Spinning Machine which has a built in timer (this needs 2 ‘C’ batteries which are not included) 3 stands for the spinning plates, a ‘spin-spike’ and three orange rotary plates.
My first observation was that, although well packaged, the box is really oversized for all the bits that are included! It could almost be a third of the size which would not only save on storage space, but also would be better for the environment!
Getting set up was quick and easy (apart from finding the batteries in our kitchen draw!), so we were ready to play in no time.
The concept is simple. You have to ‘spin-up’ the spinning plates on the Spinning Machine, one at a time, and then use your ‘spin-spike’ to transfer them to the three separate stands. All three plates have to be spinning to then get back to the timer and stop the clock. You can then use a tiny peg to mark your time. Then the next player or players take on the challenge, trying to beat your recorded time!
To make it simple, we kept the stands next to the spinning machine – the boys are only 5 and 7 and for the first times of playing we knew they would have to master the skill of actually transferring the plate to the stands!
Of course, to develop the game and make it more difficult, your opponents can make it more tricky for you. Once you have agreed a ‘play-area’ (a specific room or space inside or outside) the other players can hide your plate stands before your turn so the challenge then extends to not only having to transfer the spinning plates, but you have to find the stands to transfer them to, check the plates are all still spinning AND race back to the timer to get the best time! When I say hide though, they have to be reasonably easy to spot and not in a tricky place to get to (we don’t want any cheating!).
The hubby and I find the game quite easy, managing to transfer the plates with no trouble and of course, the plates for us were next to the machine, so we didn’t get to experience the thrill of racing round the room (though I am sure this will be on the cards soon!)
The boys on the other hand found it a bit more tricky! My eldest managed to transfer 2 of the plates within the timer, but ended up throwing the last plate across the room! A bit more practice needed here I think until we can introduce the hiding element!
My youngest, on the other hand, couldn’t manage at all. He couldn’t get the angle of his hand right and managed to knock the spinning plates off the machine each time he went to take one off! It is a case of practise make perfect… and that is just what they boys attempted to do, for a while at least! I think because they found it a challenge and seemed to not be succeeding too well, they got bored fairly quickly, mostly through frustration, so it will be interesting to see how many times it comes out for them to skill up in order to develop the game further!
So what do we think? Well, there is a mixed review from Me and the Boys…
A thumbs up and an 7/10 from my 7 year old who thought it was quite good but a bit hard to do!
A thumbs down and a 1/10 from my 5 year old who said it was not good because it was too hard and not really fun.
And a 5/10 from Mummy and Daddy who think whilst it may be a good game to play with the family, you would lose interest in it fairly quickly!
It is, however, interesting to see that the pice has been dropped in a few places recently to as low as £9.99, which to me is a good price to snap up for those rainy days! It seems a lot better than paying over £20!