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What is the appeal of Playmobil?


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#26 5150 Lego

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Posted 23 February 2012 - 07:33 AM

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I wanted this sooooooo bad when i was a kid. Playmobil was very rare in my area and even though i pulled off straight A's that year, my parents were unable to find one. :sad:

I got over it and in a couple years found something even better.. :wink:

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Still wish i could get my hands on the playmobil crane though. That thing is a classic!
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#27 Gryphon Ink

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Posted 23 February 2012 - 08:11 PM

Um, the appeal is in playing, like the name implies.  Kids don't always want to build.  Sometimes they just want to roleplay, and Playmobil is awesome for that.  Over the years, they've had a much more diverse set of historical themes than Lego does.  Their knights have better accessories, and they have a lot of appeal to young kids who haven't yet bought into the idea that every toy has to be branded with a logo from the latest hot movie series or cartoon.  They have tons of animals.  They had hedgehogs and guinea pigs and rabbits years before Lego did.  They have baby-sized "minifigs" and child-sized and doll-sized and adult-sized, and all of them are jointed.  They look great.

They are just different from Lego.  Not worse, just different.  If you compare similar sets, say the $10 Kraken Attackin' (Pirates) set with the same size Playmobil pirates set from about ten years ago, they both give you a dinky little boat with one or two people in it, a few accessories and an octopus in the Lego set.  The Playmobil set is more polished, has a few more accessories, and it doesn't take any imagination to see that it's a boat.  The Lego set is, well, a bunch of bricks that happen to come together in a shape that's sort of raft-like.  It's not as detailed or nearly as pretty.  The magic in it is that you can do whatever the hell you want with those bricks, while the Playmobil boat will never be anything but a boat.

I think the potential for adults to enjoy Playmobil is rather limited, but for kids they make a great toy that scales to a pretty good age range.  My 3YO, who gets frustrated pretty quickly with Lego building, loves them, and my 10YO who prefers Lego will still occasionally play with her Playmobil guys and jealously protect them from her sister.  The toys are very well made, like Lego, and allow the kids to use their imagination, like Lego.  But they're different.
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#28 Wardancer

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Posted 23 February 2012 - 11:02 PM

In his book "Generation Golf", famous German editor Florian Illies describes the 80s as a sort of paradigm shift. LEGO he associates with a "do it yourself"-afterwar-generation (with the VW bus we all know as a symbol for a car which can be repaired by yourself and in which you make self-planned holidays). Playmobil, he says, stands for a new consumerism and a focus on finished, highly elaborated stylish products (in cars, this was the VW Golf, which was supposed to look shiny ).

LEGO in the 80 was much less elaborated than today, that's why Playmobil had a chance then. VERY iconic in the 80s was the Playmobil pirate ship. It could swim in a a bath tub. Everyone had it. LEGO you could buy on flea markets very cheap per kilogram, because it was mainly bricks. With all the good devleopments LEGO has undergone till today, I cannot see a reason to prefer Playmobil anymore.

#29 happymark

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Posted 23 February 2012 - 11:37 PM

I am wondering if we LIKE LEGO more just because we already had a fair big collections?
If I only had one or two sets, and got some some pieces missing. the whole sets would be useless too
(talking about theme sets, not the freestyle ..)

View Postvexorian, on 17 February 2012 - 06:23 PM, said:

Not really.

I am not talking about boxes being bigger than needed. But they are large. The stuff inside the boxes are also large. So kids that want big stuff prefer that.

Eventually, you grow up and figure out that the 'play' part of playmobil is just as fun as the play part of minifigs. But all the sets you had are now useless because you lost 10% of the pieces. In the case of LEGO, even if you had only 10% of your collection left, it is still useful.

The most annoying thing is that playbill stuff are often just too hard to disassemble.


#30 slovakiasteph

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Posted 24 February 2012 - 04:09 AM

View PostPlastic Nurak, on 20 February 2012 - 05:52 PM, said:



Maybe with an igloo :cry_happy: ?

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Yes, that's it!  I still have it, of course.  My sister had the dog sled and kayak.  :classic:
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#31 Plastic Nurak

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Posted 24 February 2012 - 01:31 PM

View Postslovakiasteph, on 24 February 2012 - 04:09 AM, said:

Yes, that's it!  I still have it, of course.  My sister had the dog sled and kayak.  :classic:

I loved that set :wub: .
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efferman said:

but anyway we are all lego Users. i dont care which nationality the people have.

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#32 Palathadric

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Posted 24 February 2012 - 04:47 PM

I think, well at least before, Playmobil used to have a lot more accessories than a toy like Lego did. More animals are available, although Lego are starting to pump them out, it seems, as well, but at least in the past, they had more detail in their accessories. You know, the small things that kids really like. My thoughts seem a bit scattered right now, don't know why, but I used to quite like Playmobil when I was small, although I think Lego has always been my preferred choice, only my big brothers would never allow me to play with theirs. :cry_sad:
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