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Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Tonka XT Ricochet Tricksters


Here’s a remote control vehicle that’s got every kiddo in my house fighting over it, whether they are 2 or almost 12! 


Watch the “Tonka XT Ricochet Trickster Buzzsaw in action:

This little guy will make even your wee ones experts at performing vehicular acrobatics.  In addition to the regular forward and backward levers, there’s a special “trick” button that makes performing your Trickster’s specialty simple enough for even old fogies (like me).

Tricksters come in 2 varieties:  Buzzsaw and Rampage.  The Buzzsaw’s special trick is spinning.  Press the trick button once to spin in one direction and again to spin in the opposite direction.  The Rampage’s special trick is flipping.  Both cars can be made to do both tricks without using the “special” button.  We received the Buzzsaw for review.

Tonka XT Ricochet Tricksters are small and rechargeable.  You just plug the car into the remote to recharge.  The remote takes 4 AA batteries (not included). Tonka says charging takes about 20 minutes and lasts about 15-20 minutes.  We found that the first charge only took about 13 minutes and lasted 25 minutes.  Subsequent charges on the same batteries take slightly longer and last a slightly shorter time, but the figures they give seem to be the average. 

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We’ve been playing with this for a couple of weeks, have charged it multiple times, and are still using the same set of batteries, so it’s no battery hog.

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The cord is as short as it possibly can be, but it’s not too difficult to plug in (the place where it goes is on the side of the car, between the wheels).  The compartment that hides the cord is also as small as it possibly can be, there’s exactly one way to stow the cord away if you want it to fit.

Although these cars are designed for ages 6 and up, the controls are ultra simple.  Even my 2-year-old (with supervision) has no trouble controlling the Buzzsaw. 

There are 2 levers, one each on the right and left, to control the car’s direction.  If you flip one lever in one direction and the other in the opposite direction, the car will spin.  Press both levers up, and the car goes straight forward.  Press them down, and it goes backwards, but not straight (it turns unpredictably).  When the car is flipped, the controls are reversed. 

You’ll notice that the profile is so low that it tends to drive under things.  It also tends to get stuck under things and the car doesn’t seem to receive signals from the remote when it is under something.  No biggie, but sometimes frustrating for youngers kids.

Flipping the car is pretty easy.  You can flip by running into something or quickly switching direction.  Even I can do it!

The car also runs on 3 different channels (there’s a switch on both the car and the remote for changing channels), making it easy to run multiple cars in one room.

This one is definitely a keeper!  I like that it’s small and easy to put away, with no unruly antenna to get in the way.  The kiddos like the ease of use and tricky nature of the Tonka XT Ricochet Trickster, although the oldest wouldn’t mind having more control over the car. 

If you want precision driving, the Ricochet Trickster isn’t for you.

If you like a little quirky unpredictability, the Trickster is a fun ride and a good pick for under your Christmas tree.  Look for it at Toys ‘R Us and other area stores. 

Tonka XT Ricochet Tricksters are suggested for ages 6 and up, though I think most 5-year-olds could handle it..

Disclosure:  I received this toy for free from Tonka through BzzAgent in the hopes that I’d  like it enough to talk about it.  I received no compensation.  The opinions expressed here are my own and I was in no way obligated to write a positive review.

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