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Ben 10: Alien Laboratory

Reviewing: Bandai Ben 10: Alien Laboratory  |  Rating:
dsnygrl By dsnygrl on
Badge: Editor | Level: 30 | Children & Parenting Expertise:
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My son loves the Cartoon Network show Ben 10. All he wanted for his birthday last year was the Ben 10: Alien Laboratory so being the great parents (suckers) we are, we purchased it for him. If you were to ask him to review it he would give it A's across the board. But since I am the one actually doing the review, my opinion of it is not as high as his.

The Ben 10 Alien Laboratory is a replica of Ben's Grandpa's RV. The RV can be driven around the room as a toy itself but when you open it up, it becomes a full scientific laboratory where you can perform science experiments and other activities. The ages for this toy are listed as 4 and up and my son was 5 when we purchased it.

The set comes with a small container of clay and molds so you can make the 10 aliens that Ben turns into on the show. It also has a science beaker, a test tube spoon and 2 transforming alien rocks. The idea here is to fill the beaker with warm tap water and use the spoon to lower the dissolving rock into the water. There it bubbles and fizzes (think of a really large piece of Alka Seltzer or those fizzy bath things) until all that is left is a little 1 inch alien figure. Ok, this was my biggest problem with this set. First of all they smell really bad. They make me think I got caught in a baby powder factory explosion. I have to leave the room when he plays with these because the smell is so strong. The second problem is that the set only comes with 2 rocks. They do sell refill packs of 2 but they are really hard to find and cost $5.99 for each set. The lab also includes a viewer that allows you to view the collectable animation chips that are packaged with the 4 inch action figures that are sold separately. So if you don't buy your kid some of the action figures, this piece is really useless. But of course being the good parents (suckers) we are, we already had several of the action figures already. The set also has some problems with popping open when you don't want it to and my son has a hard time trying to get everything back inside to close it up. Most of the time he ends up leaving the loose pieces out and closes it empty.

I see all the faults in this toy and would not buy it again for what it costs vs what you get but I do have to say my son likes it and has played with it off and on for months. We have not been able to locate any of the rock refills for a while now so he is bummed that he can not use those right now because that was his favorite part but he still plays with the RV itself and molds the clay aliens so I guess all was not wasted.