Tomy Aquadoodle Animal Magic Sounds
"Simply fill your Aquadoodle pen with water, choose from you favourite farmyard friend from the images on the mat and doodle away to the sounds"
Opening this toy served as a reminder to have a cross head screwdriver and batteries at the ready on Christmas Day.
The play mat was bigger than I expected and beautifully colourful, but in the time I spent fiddling around trying to find what I needed to make the Animal Magic pen work, my 2 1/2 year old lost interest and went back to watching CBeebies.
I did eventually find a screwdriver (and a few other interesting items in my husband's drawers that I shall have to have words about!!) and after a quick dash to our local Morrisons for buy one get one free Duracell triple As (plenty of spares now) we were up and running.
For this review, I think I will leave my daughter to show you in her own little way what she thinks of the Aquadoodle.
As you can probably see from the video, my daughter does love to doodle and she can be a bit indiscriminate as to where she doodles and with what (permanent markers, yoghurt...). If this doodle mat can satisfy her scribbling urges and stop her colouring in my kitchen cupboard doors, it would be worth every single penny of the retail price!
The Magic pen is very comfortable to hold and the process of refilling with water is not fiddly at all.
There are a couple of slightly disappointing things I should mention.
Firstly the fact that you can only doodle in one colour because of the nature of the mat means that you do end up with one big green splodge (with an enthusiastic doodler) until the surface dries and returns to an inviting white blank canvas.
Secondly, in order to make the animal sounds, the wide end of the Magic pen is pushed onto plastic discs located on the border of the mat near to the images of the 'farmyard friends'. The cunningly designed discs press the appropriate combination of three little buttons on the base of the pen to produce each of the farmyard sounds. If you don't place the pen accurately on the disc it is a bit hit and miss as to which sound you end up with. For some reason (maybe a simple manufacturer error) the disc that corresponds to the tractor image on our play mat cannot be made to produce the correct 'brmm' sound. This doesn't really impair my daughter's enjoyment (so what if the tractor quacks) but my son may be less forgiving when he is old enough to have a turn.