As my son’s eyes bugged out of his head like a cartoon character, he exhaled his breath, squealing, “that is SO AWESOME!”
I had just opened the box which contained my review set of Edo’s cardboard interlocking bricks. The Edolini set, with 27 bricks that are intended to make up to three robots, was the preview pack provided for media and will cost either $53 (for early birds) or $60 on the Kickstarter.
As long time Lego brick lovers, the idea of giant size interlocking bricks was pretty awesome. A few years ago, the local children’s museum had invested in an Imagination Playground set, which we thought was pretty excellent but far exceeded our price range. Edo combines Imagination Playground with the interlocking building block concept in an eco-friendly (and space conscious) manner.
That sounds like a super lot, huh?
It’s really not. Basically, the blocks are pretty niftily constructed cardboard blocks. Delivered in a space conscious flat box, the construction of the blocks is nicely simple, leading to a sense of zen repetition. The 27 blocks took about an hour and a half to fold and construct, which wasn’t particularly onerous. I definitely suggest that you watch the video instructions for folding the blocks.
I, well, being me, did not. This led to some mis-building of the “one-peggers,” as my son calls them. The written directions, while mostly clear, don’t clearly show how to fold in some of the tabs to keep the blocks more secure and stable. Most of that is simply the inability of written pictorial directions to show movement well. Since Edo provides the link to the video directions with the box, it’s not even as though you need to go searching for them. I’m just a very “do-it-myself” overconfident (and apparently hubristic) person. The most awkward part of the building process is putting the “pegs” on top because all four tabs need to go in almost simultaneously in order to keep the shape, while the tabs need to be on the outside of the inner folds so that the block walls stay sturdy.
Speaking of sturdy, the engineering of these blocks is pretty awesome. The folding pattern leads to a reinforcement of the sides that make the blocks not only stand up but have enough strength to support a little bit of weight. Given that I have a small dog and a rough seven-year-old son, the blocks needed to be able to hold up to the rambunctiousness of my home. And they do. Despite being sat upon and leaned upon, they didn’t crumple immediately.
An earlier version of this review discussed whether the blocks were sturdy enough to hold up to being made into a chair. The good news is that if your child wants to build a throne, s/he can. In fact, I openly admit that when my son said he was going to build a sword, for a brief moment in time, I worried that he was trying to make a mini-version of the Iron Throne from Game of Thrones. For anyone particularly curious? My kid’s Edo Throne held all of his 48lbs of body weight and no crumpling of the cardboard occurred.
The excitement of life-size Lego-style blocks exceeded my child’s ability for self-restraint. Without even waiting for me to finish the construction of the blocks, he jumped right in to build his tower that then became Manny the Robot. Refusing to slow down (as well as refusing to help with construction), he continually squealed words like “cool!” And “Awesome!” And “Ohmigod check this OUT!” He asked for two-peggers and then eagerly awaited the one-peggers. He stood right by me as I constructed the blocks, tearing his attention from Phineas & Ferb just long enough to finish the next bit of his building and drawing.
Normally, I wait until my posts go up to share my review items. With Edo, however, I openly admit to posting them straight to my personal Facebook account to share with all my other Lego loving friends. The lightweight but sturdy blocks are insanely awesome.
Let’s just say, Edo blocks are the toy that will cause your kid to ignore Phineas & Ferb. ‘Nuff said.