WANT to amuse your children for up to 300 seconds? Buy them one of these hot items:
You yearned for a lightsaber when you were a kid. You dreamed about one. But your children aren’t into Star Wars because the new films are tedious and will hit their lightsabers against each other for around three minutes before leaving them, still gently buzzing, on the ground.
Some kind of robot
‘Over six billion different interactions’, the adverts claim, ‘will delight kids for days’. So in the hope of some peace and quiet you bought one and spent two hours setting it up and downloading the inevitable app. Turns out it does around six things which entertain for way fewer than six minutes.
What child wouldn’t love a drone? Surely only one without preternatural motor skills capable of making tiny movements on a joystick to control a vehicle in three dimensions while taking wind speed into account. After zooming off uncontrollably a few times, not worth the trouble of retrieving from next door’s rose bush.
All the fun of visiting Laser Quest in your own home, without teenagers who secure key sniping positions and spend the whole game racking up points off you. But your kids end up shooting each other at point-blank range, then hitting each other with the guns, then getting the guns taken off them with 90 seconds still on the clock.
Enormous Lego kit
Fun to build, great to look at, impossible to play with. So delicate that all the bits fall off the minute it’s picked up, so complex you can’t piece it back together without consulting the instructions. Was Lego always like this? Or have adults ruined it, like everything else?
In all honesty the kids could have hours of fun with these if given free rein. But adults swiftly tire of being shot, it turns out, especially with a belt-fed repeater that delivers 30 shots per minute each hard enough to break a flat-screen telly.