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Transformers Bumblebee Helmet

Submitted by on August 23, 2010 – 9:49 amNo Comment

Very disappointing. I think this is a lot to spend on something that’s really just a dressing up helmet with not terribly impressive sound effects.

Buy online at ToysrUs

Price £39.99


Initial thoughts: This came in the usual small-car sized box with CIA-level security fittings – it took two adults the best part of 20 minutes just to unpack. When it comes out what you have is a helmet with four smaller, plastic pieces that fit over the top of the head. These are – I have to say – incredibly hard to put together. I handed it over to a strong man, who struggled for ten minutes before asking me to make a note of the fact this toy can “reduce a father of two to tears”. We got there in the end though. And on the bright side – batteries are included.

Once it’s all assembled, you get a big plastic helmet with an adjustable strap under the chin and around the forehead. There are blue plastic see-through eye holes, and a small microphone in front of your mouth. On the left side of the helmet are three buttons to control the various sound effects.

We liked: When Flea first saw this helmet, there’s no denying she thought it looked pretty cool. And the adjustable strap makes this suitable for a wide range – on the smallest setting it was actually too small for Flea (who is four) and on the biggest setting, grown men could wear it. And did. Obviously. The little flip-up antenna on top also have tremendous comedy potential.

We weren’t keen: Pressing the buttons on the outside of the helmet triggers various phrases from the Transformers movie, with the idea that children can pretend to be Bumblebee and join in with the cool phrases and battle sound effects. Then the voice mixer in the helmet changes your voice and lets you be a Transformer. Cool, right?

Er, not really.

The sound effects on the helmet were a bit crackly and once you’re wearing the helmet they’re hard for smaller kids to reach and even harder to hear properly. As for the ‘voice mixer’? It’s a small microphone. Yes, you too can sound as though you’re using the microphone at a bad wedding, to the backing of what sounds like a crackly video game soundtrack. It’s not quite the ‘voice transformer’ we were expecting. After five minutes Flea looked up and said, “It’s not very good, is it?

Overall: This is retailing at up to £40 and personally I think that’s a lot of money for a toy that I don’t think has a great deal of play value. My bet is that in most homes it will be played with for a week then forgotten about until Dad needs a fancy dress outfit.  The box seemed to promise so much more than it actually delivers, so we were disappointed. I think if you’ve got a child who is really mad about Transformers then it might go down well – just be aware that this isn’t a “voice transformer’.

[By Sally, Who’s the Mummy?]

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