Whats the age of a kid before they can get to grips with a ROTF toy?

Discussion in 'Transformers Toy Discussion' started by tikgnat, May 9, 2010.

  1. tikgnat

    tikgnat Baweepgranaweepninnybong. TFW2005 Supporter

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2002
    Posts:
    23,668
    News Credits:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    422
    Location:
    Beneath the Loft, London, UK
    Likes:
    +1,575
    Ebay:
    Twitter:
    This is actually a *shock* serious question I'm posing today.

    I like my Transformers, complicated isn't necessarily better, but suitably complex is always satisfying for me. But I'm not wanting to know about adults.

    Now I'm of the age where friends of mine have kids of their own. They also like Transformers, after I've given the '86 movie on DVD and wotnot. All the usual stuff.

    But at what age do kids become coordinated enough to sucessfully 'play' with a ROTF Transformer?

    A 3 year old boy I know has absolutely NO CHANCE to transform anything from a Scout upwards.

    A seven year old girl I know (and actually their dad too) cannot transform a deluxe ROTF Skids at all. I suspect this particular example isn't a good one, as I have big problems with that mold too.

    I know a 10 year old boy who can't transform his Deluxe Sideswipe properly either, with or without instructions.

    Now I know thats the whole point of the Fast Action battler line, its for the younger kids, but if the mainline is supposed to be for 5+, and kids around 10 can't transform them, at what age are kids actually able to properly Transform them?

    Are they meant to be puzzlers in the vein of a Rubiks cube, or are they supposed to be 2 toys in one? Discuss, I really want to know your thoughts on this.
     
    Last edited: May 9, 2010
  2. jorod74

    jorod74 Psycholagnist (Ret.)

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2007
    Posts:
    7,559
    News Credits:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    176
    Likes:
    +2
    Ebay:
    i know what ya mean.

    i know an 8 year old now that i wouldn't give a RotF figure (not even a scout) to until he was 12. His dad brought him over to my place and all he did was tell me how he could "thanfoam" *his word* any figure i had.
    yeah, right. after popping a part off a figure, then dropping it on the floor and grabbing a second figure, i gave up on him. told him to leave my collection alone.


    i think it's a case by case basis. some kids are better at the deluxes than others.
    i got problems with a few deluxes at my age. Never have transformed my Dirge, or my Blazemaster. heck, my Bludgeon is among that group.


    still, the age groups the toys are listed for are 5+...What the hell? i don't know a 5 year old who can handle any Deluxes without destroying it. Like the RotF Arcee.
    i doubt they were designed as puzzle/education toys, though.
     
  3. Moroni Prime

    Moroni Prime #TFYLP Podcast

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2004
    Posts:
    4,104
    News Credits:
    30
    Trophy Points:
    212
    Likes:
    +31
    Um, 26?! o_o;

    *sulks off muttering something about icecream trucks*
     
  4. Magnus' Mate

    Magnus' Mate Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 27, 2008
    Posts:
    2,706
    News Credits:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    167
    Likes:
    +5
    Indeed. I'm 29, and still haven't mastered the "fun/play" element, so... 30?

    Seriously, besides Legends and Scouts, I can't see any kid actually playing (as in a narrative story play as opposed to just banging his toys together) with many modern TFs. They just take too long to transform. One (accomplished) poster here said he took almost 45 mins to completely transform Leader Prime successfully. What chance a child?
    The G1 figure took about 20 seconds, but was still fun.

    Moan, groan, whine etc.
     
  5. Auto Morph

    Auto Morph Gimmick Bot

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2010
    Posts:
    8,449
    Trophy Points:
    176
    Likes:
    +0
    I'm not ashamed to admit I often have difficulty transforming some of the movie figures. Mainly because the instructions are so piss poor nowadays. Ah, I long for the colour photos of the G1 instruction booklets... I can't see what piece it is I need to move half the time!

    The problem is that some joints are too stiff, so they seem like they aren't supposed to move at all, whereas other won't clip in or unclip, and you're afraid to force it.

    I see almost on a daily basis ROTF figures that are listed on eBay, with a comment in the item description along the lines of "selling because my child can't transform it", then you look at the picture and the figure is just a half transformed mess of limbs and kibble.

    As for the age needed to successfully transform a ROTF transformer... perhaps no younger than 10, and even then maybe a really smart 10 year old.
     
  6. biscuits

    biscuits Sin from Genesis

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2008
    Posts:
    8,537
    Trophy Points:
    192
    Likes:
    +7
    im 12 (13 this month =D) and i only have problems with ROTF leader prime.
     
  7. Human Beastbox

    Human Beastbox The Murdinator

    Joined:
    May 15, 2008
    Posts:
    3,720
    News Credits:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    151
    Likes:
    +1
    This is a really tough question to ask.

    Between the pose-ability of todays figures, coupled with the sometimes stiffness of joints, things clipping in, joints popping off ball joints, they can be difficult for anyone at any age to transform.

    I gave some Transformers as X-mas gifts to my fairly smart 8 year old cousin and he had a hell of time with them. So do I, most of the time, when they're like Alternators or something.

    Meanwhile, my G1's I can transform 5 times in the time it takes me to Transform ROTF leader Prime.

    So, I guess the age thing is relative, but I'd never give a current Transformer to a kid younger than 8 that I liked. :D 
     
  8. SharkyMcShark

    SharkyMcShark Hi. I'm better than you

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2006
    Posts:
    1,838
    News Credits:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    142
    Likes:
    +14
    Possibly better than the grown man that takes 45 minutes to transform a toy that takes a normal collector 5 odd minutes to transform.

    Anyway, I'm glad that the ROTF line isn't designed for the lowest common denominator/new entrant to the line. To be honest I couldn't care less if a non collector or proficient child can't transform Rampage or Sideways - they're still selling like hotcakes and I love the added complexity.
     
  9. SPLIT LIP

    SPLIT LIP Dry built

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2005
    Posts:
    66,380
    News Credits:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    407
    Location:
    agile house
    Likes:
    +868
    If Leader Starscream's is any indication, those may be making a partial return.
     
  10. brr-icy

    brr-icy G1 Collector

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2008
    Posts:
    15,699
    News Credits:
    6
    Trophy Points:
    282
    Likes:
    +154
    Ebay:
    my friend's 8 year old has never transformed any of his deluxes and up by himself,
     
  11. MaxGoof

    MaxGoof Preordained Soul

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2002
    Posts:
    300
    News Credits:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    111
    Likes:
    +3
    Haha. KIDS? I'm 27 and have been transforming Transformers all my life, and *I* can't transform most of the damned ROTF toys myself...
     
  12. MidnightBliss

    MidnightBliss Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2008
    Posts:
    4,131
    Trophy Points:
    167
    Likes:
    +4
    The movie Transformers are a completely different beast. For whatever reason, they are extremely complicated. 31 years old here and still have a bitch of a time with most of them. I collect them but, I don't actually play with them.

    BW,A,E,C---These toys I play with. Sure some of them are a pain to transform but, overall, they are fun to play with. These are the figs that are aimed for kids.
     
  13. Foster

    Foster Super Mod

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2003
    Posts:
    32,061
    News Credits:
    7
    Trophy Points:
    312
    Likes:
    +11
    I think the complexity is to give older kids a bit more of a challenge, keep them working at it a bit longer. Getting from one mode to the other takes more time that previous lines, probably to aim the mainline at 8-12 and the simpler stuff from 5-8. That way the seven-year-old who got into TFs in 2007 isn't bored by what's on the shelf in 2010 now that he's ten.
     
  14. jestermon

    jestermon Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 10, 2006
    Posts:
    7,599
    Trophy Points:
    232
    Likes:
    +8
    Well the guidelines are always on the package.

    Age appropriate toys are a big problem if parents don't pay attention.

    But I think it varies, and you have to take in account people's general motor skills and creativity to understand how to visually spacalially work them.

    I work at a store and I usually show customers where an item is but if i tell some one it's on ilse 12, and I point to a nearby ilse and say it will be right there on isle 12 some people will start to go down the nearby isle instead of going to 12.
     
  15. Bumblethumper

    Bumblethumper old misery guts

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2007
    Posts:
    8,807
    News Credits:
    6
    Trophy Points:
    192
    Likes:
    +20
    While I enjoy the screen accuracy, I find the difficulty takes a lot of the fun out of the toys in some cases and it adds a lot of frustration. I don't think they found quite the right balance on ROTF.

    I'm not against complexity, because some figures can be complex, and still transform with ease. That's why I like ROTF Voyager Starscream over something like Mixmaster. Starscream is a joy to transform, but Mixmaster is fiddly and awkward.

    Some molds are a lot more kid-friendly than others. If you want to introduce a kid to transformers, bear this in mind and choose carefully. ROTF Gears/Movie Stockade is a nice one in this regard.
     
  16. Wars

    Wars Regular At Swerve's™

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2009
    Posts:
    14,890
    News Credits:
    13
    Trophy Points:
    282
    Location:
    The Emerald Isles
    Likes:
    +167
    Facebook:
    Twitter:
    Instagram:
    Flickr:
    Tumblr:
    Im thirteen years old and I can transform ROTF leader Optimus Prime in about one minute and Masterpiece Skywarp in about two and a half. I think it doesnt matter what age you are, as long as you have a bit of patience in transforming the two. My brother is eight and he can transform almost all of my ROTF deluxes and a few of the voyagers, so again I say, it just takes a bit of patience and strong willingness to transform a figure.
     
  17. Evil_the_Nub

    Evil_the_Nub Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2009
    Posts:
    200
    Trophy Points:
    56
    Likes:
    +0
    That's true, a lot of people are idiots. The store I work at is really bad because the aisles are numbered in an asinine way. The shelves are numbered, so each aisle is between numbers. I tell people what they're looking for is between 5 and 6 and they say "aisle 356?" and then they go between 3 and 4. It doesn't matter how old you are, a smart 7 year old would be able to transform a RotF figure when a 30 year old idiot can't.
     
  18. chrisr291

    chrisr291 Master of the Unknown

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2009
    Posts:
    12,358
    News Credits:
    5
    Trophy Points:
    227
    Likes:
    +33
    Ebay:
    I think this complexity will have its backlash in the future. If we had ROTF toys during our eras (G1, BW, etc) I doubt many of us would have grown to the love the franchise. We would of grown frustrated and said "hey look.... Spiderman... ooohhhh... aaaawwww...."
     
  19. SharkyMcShark

    SharkyMcShark Hi. I'm better than you

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2006
    Posts:
    1,838
    News Credits:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    142
    Likes:
    +14
    I don't think the complexity will have a backlash so much as a change in the structure of the line - which we've seen already to be fair. Each major character gets their own 'main' figure now (a deluxe, leader, voyager, whatever) and also a Fast Action Battler (/whatever the Animated equivalent was called).

    To be honest I find the complexity compelling. I'd rather have RotF Mixmaster, with a realistic alt mode and finicky complex transformation than something like Animated Bulkhead or Universe 2.0 Silverbolt, which are meant to be apparently more 'playable' because the transformations essentially just involve straightening the limbs and positioning kibble.
     
  20. Feralstorm

    Feralstorm I ship Nick & Judy TFW2005 Supporter

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2003
    Posts:
    17,110
    News Credits:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    327
    Likes:
    +58
    Like most said, depends on the toy and depends on the kid. Many movie/ROTF toys are probably on the edge of being 'beyond' their intended market though. Hasbro didn't go from Beast Machines and RID to much simpler and more gimmicky Armada toys (and their related success) just because they hate the fans. ;) 
     

Share This Page