Sunday, 7 August 2011

iball 3...Fascinating and Infuriating!

HTi have introduced the iball 3 - the unique can't-put-down interactive memory game.  It is a clear ball with an electronic display inside with six lights and sound features.  Designed for ages 8-80, it will fascinate and infuriate in equal measure.  Tipped by Hamley's to be one of this Christmas's top toys, it is fast, fun and interactive and an aid to brain training for all the family. The Gadget Show on Channel 5 named it their number 1 toy at the London Toy Fair for 2011.
The iball 3 is stylish looking, a real executive toy for the 21st century, designed by computer genius and inventor Andrew Reeves who has been seen on TV shows including The Dragon's Den.

The idea of the puzzle is to work out the light sequence and switch all six lights to the same colour within a time limit.  Each light has a choice of three colours initially, creating over a million permutations.  There are two levels of play, the second of which sees you working with four colours!  Once you have succeeded a unique icode is displayed  which allows you open up all the interactive aspects of the puzzle and track your progress against other players at on their online leaderboard.

We were sent an iball3 to try out for ourselves.  I loved the look of this high tech gizmo!  It looks great sat on the black stand like something out of a Sci-Fi movie.  The ball is really tactile and the lights and sounds create a really addictive toy.

I would like to tell you at this point how we have mastered the iball3 and are now experts.  Sadly, it's not the case.  I've matched the 6 lights twice but nothing seems to have happened...maybe I'm too slow.  We are clueless!  It sounds simple enough, we just haven't worked out how to progress.  We are truly infuriated by how puzzling it is.  I've delayed publishing this review just in case we cracked it so I could write about how clever we are!  But I couldn't wait any longer.  I have had to come clean.  

I'm sure many people will love the challenge of the iball3...I just don't get it.  Whatever we do just doesn't seem to work.  Lights light up...numbers flash on the LED display but we're not sure why.  The instruction leaflet does not help at all. To say we're confused is an understatement.  Even the kids can't get their head around it and they are the ones who usually grasp concepts and leave their parents standing!  My teenager refused to be videoed for this review because she doesn't get what she is doing with the iball3!  Maybe we are just not techy enough...I'll be getting my computer geeky 22 year old to have a go next time he visits...I'm sure it'll be right up his street and he'll complete the level in no time and tell us where we're going wrong!

If anyone can offer me any advice or help I'd be very grateful, because this is a great product.  It is intelligent and challenging.  But too frustrating for me!  

Their strap line is CAN YOU DO IT???  (Me?  I'm not so sure that I can!)

The retail price is around £16.99. (Amazon currently have it on sale for £11.75 + p&p from Gameseek.) 

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