Most helpful critical review
44 of 47 people found the following review helpful
frustrating assembly. falls apart.
on July 25, 2012
Having put together two other Ravensburger Puzzle Balls (Times Square 270 Piece Puzzle Ball and Underwater World 40 Piece Puzzle Ball) with my 4.5 year old son, I thought this 180 piece Puzzle Ball would be a quick and easy build. Unfortunately, it was not so.
My son and I started assembling the puzzle ball using the same method we used to assemble two previous puzzle balls - I was sorting pieces and he was putting the puzzle together. However, the puzzle kept falling apart and we had to switch. My son sorted and laid out all pieces in front of me well ahead of me getting to them. The area that includes pieces 69 through 75 was especially frutrating as those pieces just would not stay together.
While some pieces won't stay together, others were difficult to attach. During the build, the ball would fall apart at a lightest application of force when attaching stubborn pieces. I spent well in excess of 15 minutes attaching the last piece. As I was applying the pressure to attach the last piece, surrounding or other random pieces kept falling out. The frustration level was so high that I was ready to smack the ball against the floor.
The included assembly stand helped to hold the puzzle for the assembly of the last few rows, but it was absolutely useless in the beginning because pieces kept falling off and I had to hold the ball in the palm of my hand to keep it from falling apart. A child with small hands would not have been able to hold this puzzle like I did. An hour later I was finally done, and, by that time, my son had lost all interest long before.
The final product looks like a small globe. It is colorful and spins easily. Unfortunately the fun was drained from this toy by unnecessarily difficult assembly. I like challenging puzzles, but this one is annoyingly frustrating due to poor design or manufacturing quality. It seems like a few other reviewers had a similar experience. I do not recommend this toy to anyone. It is not challenging as a puzzle because pieces are numbered. It is nothing else but a small globe when assembled. The assembly is frustrating.