When I found out about this a few weeks ago, I was pretty excited to get a few sets. When I told my 7 year old son about it being a big Mario and Luigi fan he is, he was even more excited than I am. We finally received 3 sets of these for review so here’s my impressions. For this review, I’m going to be talking about the Motorcycle Mario, Kart Yoshi, and Kart Mario.
There’s not very many pieces at all for these K’Nex sets. The motorcycle set has 31 pieces and the kart has 65. Although there’s an instruction on how to put together the Mario and Yoshi figure, they came in a separate plastic bag built already. Also, the blocks are slightly bigger than your typical Lego block so they’re easier to put together. The pullback motor for the car is probably the biggest piece (for the car). One of my favorite feature is the fact that you can use the box as a ramp. How often do you buy toys for yourself or for your kids and have to get rid of the box after? You can either use the box as a ramp itself, or download a few tracks on the K’Nex website and stick them in the ramp. I also want to point out that the figures are a lot bigger than your typical Lego minifig which is a really great thing. The kart sets also came with a banana peel for Mario, and a mushroom for the Yoshi set.
Since there weren’t a lot of pieces, constructing these things were quick and easy. For the 7 year old, it took him about 8 minutes to build the motorcycle and around 11 minutes to build the car (not including putting the stickers on, I did that for him). Like I mentioned before, the blocks are slightly bigger so they’re a little easier to handle. It’s really not hard to put it together. If your child or you get a little intimidated by the fact that there’s a lot of little pieces, don’t! They’re easier than the usual K’Nex toys believe me!
When you read a review, you normally get either a pros and cons so why not with this one.
One of my main concern with the kart is the fact that the exhaust part comes off so easily. People who played with Lego’s before know this before hand as the building sets are extremely fragile once built. As for the motorcycle, Mario barely goes down enough so his feet are touching the pegs at the bottom. The other half of the figures, the leg part, are not very consistent with each set. The legs we got from the car was slightly open while the one that came with the actual motorcycle set was a little bit squeezed thats why it was harder to push it down on the seat.
Another issue I had with the set is the fact that you have to separate the figure to place it onto the car. I had to constantly remind my 7 year old to make sure he attaches the legs either on the top of the pullback motor or just put it away in a safe place where he can remember it easy. And that’s another thing, the leg part of the figure also has these huge holes at the bottom so i’m not sure if it’s meant to be like that or if its also meant to stand on a K’Nex board/surface. As for Yoshi’s legs, you can’t really place it on top of the motor since it comes off very easily.
For $7 and $12, these are an absolute must for kids ages 6 and up. Especially if they’re huge fans of the Mario Kart series. There have been a few Mario Kart related toys in the market in the past and today as well and my son and I have went through every single one of them from the pathetic wired-RC’s to the recent pullback cars made by Spin Master – which broke on the second day. These sets are much better than those junks and you can tell once you build them.
These sets are really nice and despite the problems we had, my son had a blast building and playing them and we look forward to the other sets they have coming out in the future. I was told by a rep from K’Nex that they will be releasing the bigger sets (seen on my Nintendo World post a few weeks ago) later in the summer time. A Bowser set is planned for a fall release (can’t wait). At the moment, you can buy these sets at the K’Nex store online or at your local Toys R Us stores (or online as well). It’s a little tricky to find them everywhere at the moment, but I was told that soon all the major department stores in the U.S. will carry them as well.