As a family we’ve not really played with robotic Artificial Intelligence pets before. I’ve seen the original Teksta puppy being demonstrated, but being sent one of the new generation of Micro Pets was my first change to get my hands on one of these little cuties and try it out for myself.
We were sent Raccoon variant of the new Teksta Micro Pets Adventure Park and what you get inside the box is the interactive pet raccoon, plus several pieces of track that can be fitted together, and a ball for your new pet to play with.
Now, let’s start with the track. This is made of plastic and clips together. With what you have in the adventure park pack you can either make a straight route so your pet goes up a bridge and on to a little see-saw bit, which then releases his ball for him to chase after, or you can clip the curved pieces together to form a wheel for your pet to play in. I found clipping the track together to be quite tricky as it required you to be quite forceful, and it was certainly more than Little Miss C could manage with her six year old hands. On the flip-side though, once the track was clipped together it was definitely staying that way. There are four different play sets available and they all fit together to make bigger, and more complicated tracks.
As for the little raccoon himself. He’s actually quite small and fits into the palm of my hand in a very cute fashion. Just as soon as we’d taken him out of the box Little Miss C declared that she was in love with him and insisted on taking him to bed with her that night along with her usual collection of cuddly toys!
The raccoon required 3 little button batteries to work and comes with some already installed. There is a small slider switch on the back of his head which you use to switch him on and off. If you talk to the raccoon, clap at him, or make other sounds he will walk and make sounds whilst his eyes flash. He will normally move forwards and backwards, but you can program him to move forwards only by pressing and holding the button on top of his head until you hear him beep. To get out of this mode you just press and hold the same button again until you hear another beep.
Now I’m not sure if these Teksta Micro Pets are designed to work with the pitch of children’s voices or not, but I found that if I tried saying something to him I was ignored totally (much like my own children often do!) but whistling at him had the desired effect! LMC and Master C however seemed to not have that problem.
The kids had the most fun putting the raccoon inside his wheel and watching him go forwards and backwards in it whilst they shouted instructions. They seemed convinced that he was actually listening to them when they told him to go forwards and backwards.
The bit that I really wish I had managed to capture on video though is what happened just after I finished filming the above clip. I moved into the kitchen to put the kettle on and then came back through to catch the raccoon snoring sweetly! Honestly. It was incredibly cute, but stopped before I managed to get my phone out again to film it and then annoyingly I couldn’t make the raccoon do it again. Very sweet.
Disclaimer: We were sent the Teksta Micro Pets Raccoon Adventure Park for the purposes of this review. All opinions remain my own.