Recently, I came across Mardles while I was at Toy Fair 2016. You might be wondering what they are! They are stickers that come to life via a free app on your smart device! They have been designed, developed and produced right here in the UK.
These stickers were been brought to life by Sharon and James. Their journey began in 2014 when Sharon saw Augmented Reality in a furniture brochure and wondered why this kind of technology has not been used for kids to enjoy. Sharon contacted her friend James, and they came up with the concept of Mardles. After months of research, questionnaires and focus groups with kids, parents and grandparents, Mardles was born!
At the moment, there are five different packs: Bugs & Beasts, Little Critters, Really Wild, Top Speed and Cuties. Each pack features six different characters and there are two of each character in the pack. Simply stick the Mardles on to any flat surface, open the free app and watch the Mardles come to life!
The AliveLab App is free and can be downloaded from the app store for Apple, Google Play store for Android devices and Amazon Appstore.
Each Mardles character has realistic movement and sound, you can even take control of your character using the on-screen joystick. You can also take a picture of the Mardles by pressing on the camera icon within the app to take a picture.
Watch my children having fun playing with the Mardles: https://youtu.be/P-dewANdHfI
This is quite an inexpensive way for younger children to enjoy virtual reality. The animated characters fascinated both of my children. The stickers are reusable as long as you stick them on the right surfaces. The stickers didn’t leave sticky marks on the surfaces we tried.
This can be played by just one person but it all depend on the weight of the device. My children struggled to hold onto the iPad while playing with it. So we ended up having one child hold the device while the other played with it. If you are using your smartphone, it should be alright!
I think this is great filler for birthday goody bags, parties, Christmas stocking fillers etc. Currently these are on sale at Amazon, Argos and via TV shopping channel QVC featuring everything from Dinosaurs to Rockets and Racing Cars to Unicorns.
Disclosure: We received the samples for the purposes of writing this review however all thoughts and opinions remain our own. Images used with permission.