Do your kids ever fancy the idea of designing their own toys or running their own toy workshop? You might want to take a look at Bamba Toys, the latest app from Singapore-based developers Mezmedia.
Pitched as an interactive toy designed for kids, the colorful app lets kids build and play with their own toys/action figures. There is an assorted selection of toy parts and accessories to choose from, including “wacky Pirates” and “glamorous Pop Stars”.
Design and Build Your Own Toys
Bamba Toys is a simple and intuitive app with no instructions. The app encourages open-ended play, and kids are free to design their toys any way they like.
The first step to assembling the toy is choosing the head. The app comes with four designs (two girls and two boys) with different skin and hair colors. Kids can also put on various head gears by dragging the desired one onto the head.
The next step is to pick out a torso. There are several designs to choose from, and it is not necessary to match them with the head. The app has a mix of costumes and accessories to appeal to both boys and girls; for example, there’s a robotic armor, a pair of butterfly wings, a rock guitar, and even a rolling pin.
After selecting the torso, kids pick out the legs. Kids can go with either pants or skirts, and add shoes to complete the look.
Once a torso is selected, kids move on to fill up a “heart” for the toy by recording their own voice. Simply press the red button to start and stop the recording, and the green button to listen. The recording can be replayed later by pressing on the little red button on the toy’s chest.
Once the design is completed, kids must now assemble the parts in a game-like activity. Using the joystick, they drag and drop the parts on top of each other to form the toy. Sounds a little difficult, but the app saves kids from frustration by auto aligning the parts so they always stack at the right position.
Once the toy is assembled, it is time to design its packaging. There are several designs to go with the themes, but it is also possible to customize each package with stickers.
Finally, once the toy is packed, kids can choose to play with it or place it on the shelf. The app automatically saves all the created toys, so kids can play with any of them next time. Each shelf holds up to 9 toys, and at the time of this review I am just filling up my second shelf.
Parents Need to Know
Bamba Toys comes with a selection of parts for designing a variety of toys, such as pirate, robot, and cowboy. To go along with these themes, it is possible to accessorize the figures with toy guns and swords.
Personally, I do not mind as the items are shown in a peaceful context, i.e. there is no actual shooting or any display of violence at all in the app. However, I am aware that some parents may have other opinions so I wanted to mention this just in case.
Another thing that I wanted to mention is that the app contains links to other Bamba apps. However, there are no third-party ads and no in-app purchases.
Things I Like
I think Bamba Toys is really cute. The graphics are bright and eye-catching. I love how once you enter the toy workshop, you get to see all of your finished/packaged toys neatly displayed on the shelves.
The assembling activity is also fun and intuitive. I especially love how you can record your own message for the toy to say -- it adds a personal touch and makes each toy a little more special. The DIY package activity wraps the entire toy design process nicely.
One thing that I would like to see in future updates is a wider selection of parts and accessories to make the app even more fun. It would also be nice to see more themes, such as superheroes and professions. Also, this might be pushing it, but I would absolutely love it if I could print out my toys for offline play.
Bamba Toys is a fun and creative app which lets kids make their own toys/action figures. Kids build the toy from a blueprint, assemble the parts, design the packaging, and finally play with it. There is a handful selection of toy parts, accessories, and stickers to create different themes such as princess, pirate, and rockstar. Overall, it’s a nice app to entertain kids ages 3–6.
Bamba Toys is available for iPad
Get it on the App Store: iPad
App was provided for our honest review.