Years ago and as one of my first serious online activities I became a top author at the public opinions and review website epinions.com. As I own the rights of my own reviews that I wrote via alias 401402 I republish them here in my archives.
It’s not only Christmas time again, every year end (when our children celebrate their birthdays around the holidays on top of all excitement at this time of the year) we have the blast to find “the perfect gift” again for them. Being a German family we have kept most of our cultural and historical roots and habits alive and so our love for Playmobil toys carried on while residing in the United States, fortunately the German company has expanded to the States and the huge success proves the perfect concept for their toys. See company facts and interesting background information at the end of the review.
2. What you get
3. What it is!
5. Additional Resources
1. Introduction (being repeated in all my Playmobil reviews)
If you have children between 3 and 10 and want them to explore the world and develop fantasy and craft skills with the help of their favorite toys, consider Playmobil as a serious option. Although it’s a bit of a pricey undertaking, especially if you want to add on to existing sets (which is, by-the-way, one of the beautiful and impressive options with Playmobil), the quality and fantasy of these sets in all sizes is unmatched. Not only will you find countless options within the sets to re-assemble them one way or the other, thus constantly change landscapes, but you will find your children stick to their series like treasures. Playmobil has managed to offer little toy worlds out of reality and fantasy to meet extended educational and fun attributes while providing the perfect environment to pick up craftsmanship, motor and concentration skills at the same time as loads of fun and excitement to share among friends and siblings.
The quality is outstanding, every single piece fits perfectly, all parts are exchangeable to open up countless possibilities. The material is un-destroyable by ordinary play habits. All plans and manuals that come with the toys are extremely well drawn and understandable by all kids of the assigned age groups. We have never found a box or set with missing or not fitting parts! The great love to the detail is what makes this series so attractive and beloved by so many children around the world.
2. What you get
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Other than the bigger police station with number 3957, this is not only a building to be completed by several smaller sets (like police car set 3904, etc.) but you already have a lot of stuff to find a little play world completed here. The set comes with the (above mentioned) police car plus two policemen, a biker with “Harley”, a gangster (just like a bad guy has to look like – unshaved – that will put me in trouble and I am only wondering when I will be thrown in jail from my son the first time after denying the daily shaving routine at Christmas time ;-))), several street signs and road construction items, chairs and tables for the police office and even “wanted” posters and a satellite dish are included in the package.
Assembling the station (where you will find a little jail, that can be locked) is very easy for adults and should not be a problem at all after showing and trying one or two times for children to repeat the steps and even try new things to put the pieces together (and apart for that matter). The explosion plans show every single detail for assembly and the parts involved at every single step.
By-the-way: the police sets are available in different colors and layouts depending on region Playmobil sells these sets to. In Germany for example you will find the car green/white like in reality and some police sets that are sold in the States feature African American policemen to match reality better.
3. What it is
The set is a fully equipped one-story police station building with office space, jail and entrance area. For better reach the house is cut in half and accessible from the closed side through doors and windows too. Other than the single parts that you have to combine to complete landscapes or environments this set features several additions already.
The police car with policemen: nice blinking lamps that can be switched on with a push button but switch off automatically after 5 seconds so the batteries don’t get drained too quickly when your child would forget to switch it off. Plus the office staff and equipment like phone, fire extinguisher, the biker with motorcycle and construction zone items.
Your child will find a complete, realistic and fun to play with police environment that will not get bored too quickly and Playmobil offers a lot of add-on’s like the police helicopter (part number 3908, see other review about the item) that we bought for December 6th, the day when children get their first Christmas related gift in Germany – Santa Claus day.
Founded as a small German company that focused on compatible vehicles some 27-30 years ago, the concept of offering smaller toys to be matched together to whole environments (LEGO has been doing this as well) has been expanded and made perfect in quality, marketing and strategy over the decades. Meanwhile the company has sold some 13 billion (!!!) pieces of little plastic dolls, vehicles and parts and develops new little worlds every month. You can find hospitals, farms, pirate ships, castles and many other environments with thousands of add-on sets that all match together in size and type of assembly.
Playmobil’s homepage (http://www.playmobil.com) gives you a pretty impressive start by switching heads of all available dolls when viewing their collection. On top of the wonderful toys they offer Fun Parks in Germany, Greece, the United States and France (check their web site for details). You will find Playmobil a company with great dedication and strong focus, a very aggressive (smart) marketing concept that does not allow to copy or abuse their branding concept and tight guidelines for dealerships and online sales. The quality they offer is dedicated to meet the most important goal a toy manufacturer should have: to provide a long lasting fun and educational experience for children of all sorts and ages.
5. Additional Resources
Playmobil interactive, fun web site, featuring Playmobil interactive games and software:
Retired Playmobil items:
Playmobil motorcycle fanclub, features new, current and retired items and discussion groups:
Here is a web site from a Japanese Playmobil collector, pretty funny and impressive:
Everyone who knows Playmobil toys (and you can certainly see that on the average ratings here at Epinions.com) is in love with their work and with whatever they own from the huge collection of sets, figures, vehicles and buildings. It would be interesting when the first collectors start global shows to show off their complete fantasy (or reality) worlds made of Playmobil items. The mix and match of reality and fantasy, combined with the educational potential and fun every child can experience with Playmobil makes it an option to look into, especially as compared to so many useless and even disturbing toys.
Please, dear parents, do your kids the favor of their and your life and think hard about the signal and effect any toy might have on their development. Buy your children toys that support their positive development and enable them to view and influence their environment with optimism and joy, fantasy and creativity, respect and love.
If you want to do something heroic this Christmas, invest a couple of bucks into a useful, positive toy and give it to a child with little hope for the future. You might end up changing the world with this little gesture!