Pirate Dinghy
By: Playmobil
4″ (ish) scale
$11.99 at Tuesday Morning

I can’t say the last time I bought a Playmobil item, but I’d imagine it was when I was a wee tyke. I believe somewhere in my leftover toys there is an old Playmobil figure, because I assume they are indestructible. They do nothing for me, but when I saw the Blind Bag figures I decided to give them a second look.

Truth be told, I was more drawn to the giant pirate ship for $11.99 more than anything. I recently picked up some other pirate figures that desperately need a ship and I thought this would be fun to use for it… But more on that another day, in a different review.

You get a pretty standard box with a decent depiction of the set on it. I notice that Playmobil mostly does these big blue boxes. I don’t know if that helps them stand out on the shelves or makes them all seem to disappear into a hazy blue mess.

The only cross sell I could find was the Skull Island on the front, but it doesn’t do much to inform you that Skull Island is another set available. The back gives a simple parts breakdown.

Playmobil figures, like Lego, are pretty uniform in design. Playmobil is definitely like a more kid friendly version of Lego in many ways, so the designs are even more dumbed down in my view. That doesn’t mean they can’t be good, but the figures themselves are pretty plain.

Right out the gate you’re hit with a lot of parts in bags.

I’ve never been particularly good at Legos or building stuff, so I found this a bit daunting at first glance.

Once everything was out of the package, I began to assemble the boat first.

The boat is pretty big for a dinghy… Heh. Seriously it’s right at a foot long.

And for the first time in my entire history of toy collecting, this required a lot of knot tying. Unfortunately I was never a Boy Scout, so I struggled a bit with these knots. There’s like a half dozen different knots you have to tie. I started to feel like I was a real Pirate!

I was able to assemble most of it though without too much trouble. Aside from the knots, everything goes together easy. The ship itself is quite sturdy and it’s sealed up on the bottom, which means this BOAT FLOATS! Talk about fun in the tub or pool!

The sail is made out of a felt-like material and it has some cool rips and tears in it. The mast has a mechanism to allow you to lower and raise the pirate flag. This really has a lot of fun little details in it. Far more sophisticated than your typical child’s toy and a lot more realistic than even Lego’s pirate stuff.

The set comes with two pirates. The first almost looks like he might have been a part of the Royal Navy or perhaps he is supposed to be a member… I’m not sure. The scruffy beard makes me think perhaps not. Maybe he pillaged this outfit from a Navy man. His shirt cuffs are separate pieces that you have to put on. Nifty!

The other guy looks a bit more like a pirate with the eye patch, but his outfit is more of a cabin boy than captain. Overall neither pirate figure is going to sell you on this set, but they’re okay for what they are I suppose.

Articulation is very limited but what you get works smoothly. Swivel head, arms and wrists. The legs are held together as one piece, which I don’t care for and work on a simple hinge. There are not many poses you’re going to get out of this crew.

The accessories here are really nice and help raise this set to another level. In addition to all the little details on the boat such as the anchor and such, you get a lot of genuine add ons.

You get two flintlock pistols, a flintlock rifle, a parrot, three barrels, two different swords, a bottle of booze and a compass with lenticular sticker.

And a working chest with a TON of gold in it.

The gold is particularly impressive as it has three different denominations. Each of the different gold piece denominations have their own sculpt.

Finally you get a working rocket launcher cannon. The cannon has a really great sculpt and looks good with or without the cannonball missile.

The missile is pretty clever, as it has a rubber ball on the end to make it look like a cannonball being fired. There are two of these included in the set.

I believe this originally retailed for about $20. At that price this is a decent, but not amazing value. Still it offered a lot for kids. However, if you’re able to find it for about $12 like I did, this is more than worth it. The ship alone is worth the $12 and the extras are just icing on the cake.

Score Recap:
Packaging – 6
Sculpting – 7
Paint – 8
Articulation – 5
Accessories – Cannon, 2 Swords, 2 Pistols, 1 Rifle, Parrot, Gold, Treasure Chest, Booze
Value – 9
Overall – 8 out of 10

The figures aren’t very exciting, but all of the accessories and the nice boat are definitely what make this set worth the price. If you need a boat for some pirates, you’d be hard pressed to find a better one at this price. This would go good with the new Minimates pirates too, I’d bet. If the boat does float, you must gloat!

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