Wednesday, 24 January 2018

Arckit Play for Young Designers and Architects - Review


Arckit Play is a new play set for budding young designers and architects made by the creators of Arckit. Arckit is a professional modelling tool for architects to quickly realise designs in 3D.

We love Arckit at Tech Age Kids and spent a lot of time making lots of different projects, including adding LEDs, 3D printing accessories and using a craft cutter to add textures. We even added a micro:bit to one of our models!


Disclaimer: Arckit sent us the latest product Arckit Play to review on the blog. Our views are always our own.

In this post I looked at the Arckit Play range, designed for ages 6+ with my 7 year old. He really enjoyed following the instructions and creating his own designs with the kit.



Arckit Play is a construction kit that helps children explore urban design.

There are three smaller kits called Tiny Town 1, 2 and 3. They are sold separately and are compatible with each other.

Each town has a different theme with different roof designs.

The box becomes part of the play with a cityscape, desert and marina printed in the different boxes. They are sturdy enough to also be used for storage.



The kits come with an instructional leaflet. My son was adamant to build the example on the leaflet first. It gives you a good idea of how pieces fit together. He quickly broke it up and started making his own designs. “I want to build the tallest building.” “Let’s see how the different roof designs shape the way the building looks.” “Can I make a flying building?

It wasn’t long before he wanted to add other things - people, cars, trees! The scale is pretty small on these urban landscapes, so anything we had at home was too big. But his imagination took over and we had a version of “The Adventures of Gulliver” played out in his cityscape.

Of course, if you have a 3d printer at home, you could solve this problem! Something we’ll be looking to do in the future.



Cityscape - A Bigger Kit

There’s also a bigger Arckit Play kit called Cityscape with 155+ pastel colour pieces and some really interesting roof designs. There are also some round shapes in this kit, which broadens the design capability.

Cityscape also comes with textures (grass, water, stone-effect) which you can cut out and add to your design. You can also print other textures from the Arckit website.

The more construction pieces you have the more you will be able to do with it. Also if you have more than one child, you probably want more than one kit, unless you get the Cityscape Kit, which has enough pieces for two children to make their creations, without fighting over the one base plate.



Verdict


Arckit Play is great for design-conscious parents, who like their kids playing with good looking toys! But more importantly, it’s a brilliant tool for developing creative thinking and user design. If you put a building here, how will people access it? Can you have so many buildings next to each other without a gap in-between?

Arckit Play is a completely different building experience from other construction toys. The pieces are robust and come in gorgeous colours.

If you have a child interested in architecture and construction, then Arckit Play is a great option.


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