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Showing 1-10 of 43 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 51 reviews
on September 6, 2016
Purchase this item for my nephew who is 10 years old. He tore into the box and set it up immediately. He then took it over to his grandparents house and set it up again so his cousins could join in on the fun.
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on December 16, 2012
Bravo to the young inventor of this game! I think seeing the inspiration this young inventor gave my son (who's always been VERY much into "inventing" even drawing, to my complete amazement, a fairly accurate schematic drawing of how he thought the moving sidewalks at the airports worked, and a drawing of the different layers of a rock we'd found when he was like 5!?)

Kids not totally plugged into video games LOVE the simplicity of creating a marble run and watching how they can tweak components to control the marble's movement to the end. This game would be a great introduction to logical/physics thinking for kids (but don't tell them that) as in, "I wonder how to make the marble do this?" or "How do I get it to not fall off the track?" The basic key is to encourage them to start VERY simple/gradual-just with the objective of getting the marble to run the full course (thus teaching them patience to gain knowledge, experience to work up to multi-jumping courses. There are actually videos of massive marble runs for this on Youtube that will blow you away!).

Unfortunately, as in other cases, I think I discovered this toy when my son was too old (10, almost 11 at the time), more into video games than marble runs. I purchased the base kit along with the "deluxe" kit (really a must to go beyond a traditional small scale marble run). Essentially, it's a bunch of plastic tracks, tubes and funnels you stick to your wall using the included plumber's putty (note that and just go buy a small $3 jar of it so that you have enough to stick the pieces on the wall).

He and I initially had a blast sticking the pieces to a large wall and created a fairly complicated track covering about 6'x 6' with jumps and ramps. Unfortunately, I didn't take the baseboard heating element along the wall into consideration and we quickly lost several of the included lightweight marbles (plastic, not standard glass marbles) since many MANY of the marbles just fell off the track. Some angle adjustments and speed controls helped. The included tubes, which you're supposed to bend into shapes with included rubber bands are too rigid to bend into tight turns as you'd expect.

Here are a few helpful hints;

1)Make sure you have a clear "drop zone" for marbles that fall off of the track
2)Use only pea-sized balls of the putty AND soften/squish/recondition the putty before reusing (you can reuse it several times).
3)Start with gradual angles-it's far more satisfying to watch the marbles travel the *entire track* than go fast and fall off, especially in the beginning.
4)REMOVE THE PIECES *IMMEDIATELY* WHEN YOU'RE DONE PLAYING! We left our "working" track on the wall for several weeks, then when I decided to pack it up, it ripped deep holes in the paint/drywall when I removed it, no doubt because I'd left it in place for so long-(prior to that, the putty left NO marks or damage to the wall at all).
5)This doesn't use standard glass marbles-it comes with lightweight plastic marbles. Maybe it could be adapted to use regular marbles, but I think they're just too heavy for the putty.

The pieces fell off frequently, adding to the frustration level (on top of several marbles just falling off the track into oblivion). He had some of his friends over and *they* were really into it-but after pieces kept falling off, they also quickly lost interest.

If I'd purchased this for him when he was say 6 to 8, I'm *sure* he would've LOVED it and it was a fun way for us to "build" something together, use creativity, apply basic physics, have a HUGE customized marble run, but again, at his age, sadly, it just wasn't as exciting as video games.
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on February 12, 2014
We got this for Christmas and were hoping for hours of fun. Instead, the sticky tack does not hold well. When I get the time, a stickier solution might be found. In the meantime, the set is sitting in its box largely unused.
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on December 26, 2013
Bought this for my kids, age 11, for Christmas. The concept of a changeable wall mounted marble run is great, however..... The design of the system leaves much to be desired. First of all, I would suggest getting better tacky putty, what came with it pulled the paint off my wall and not because we pulled it off, it fell off. Secondly, I would suggest a redesign of the tubes, maybe have half of them be closed tubes. You have to design this so the marbles fall slowly or they jump out - what fun are slow marbles? I am being generous with 3 stars as I really do like the concept for the kids to be able to manipulate on their own vs. the really complicated types. I think I can improve it with some flexible clear tubing and a few clear aquarium tubes.
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on October 18, 2013
This item is great if for no other reason because you can leave that day's creation set up, it's not out on a floor, on a table or in the way so that it needs to be taken apart and put away--because of this, my boys (ages 6-13) at various points in a day will wander by, switch pieces around, and constantly change things up. It stays where it is and they come back to it later. They've even added parts from other plastic marble run sets that we have, as well as snorkle parts and other random household items whose original intent wasn't to function as part of a marble run--their ingenuity of adding to this starter kit has had endless creative results. We really love this and will buy more sets for future presents to keep adding to it. They originally complained a little about the putty that came with it, so I bought a couple different options from the store, it's not a perfect system by any means, but it's worked well enough for our purposes. Yes, the wall is now dirty and showing signs of wear, but well worth the sacrifice to me.
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on September 24, 2016
Awesome idea. Horrible product. The sticky tack does not stick well AT ALL to the wall. It can barely keep up the plastic tracks, much less when marbles are whizzing through them. It was a very disappointing purchase as, had this worked, it would have been a lot of fun. All the pieces ended up thrown in the corner of a closet because they were basically useless. I don't think the kids used this more than for a few minutes and were frustrated with it.
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on February 26, 2014
The walls we used are in badly in need of paint so the puddy did not stick as well as we liked. About 50% or more of the marbles jumped the track. That being said my kids spent a solid week working the track over. We bought two variety kits and we built a track along the stairwell together... about 4 of us working together and it was great fun. Just wish the parts hadn't jumped off the wall so much.
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on January 12, 2015
This is an absolutely wonderful toy and I can not wait to buy some add on sets. My 5 year old needs some help to get the track set but after we build an initial run he can change it to make it faster or slower. My 2 year old will drop the marble over and over and over. The neighborhood kids come over and they work together for hours. I love that my 5 year old has started explaining to the other kids if a piece is too steep, too far away, or how to make the marble slow down. GREAT TOY!!!
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on January 4, 2014
Bought this as a Christmas gift for my 13 year old niece. Turns out that she had this on her Christmas list and didn't get it from Santa! She opened it and put it on her bedroom wall immediately. Lots of configurations to make and lots of track. It stuck well to her wall and she has been having fun with it. I also bought the Extreme Stunt Set for her brother. The only thing I would recommend for the set is to have something at the end of the track to catch the ball in.
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on January 31, 2015
While this surely can be fun, once it's mounted on the wall, it is clearly not suited for a six year old (and one that is adept at building for his age). His Dad had to help him, and it took up considerable space; plus, figuring out how to get the marbles to pass in one smooth run. Also, it is mounted wth tacky putty that pulled the paint off the wall, when removed. We also purchased the ladder add-on, and I would say the same about that, too.
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