Pros: easy to store, durable pieces
Cons: not very creative or fun to put together
Last Christmas when my son was 5 we noticed he was developing a keen interest in building things. We bought him LEGO's as one of his gifts, but when my sister in law wanted holiday gift ideas I suggested she look for a set of Lincoln Logs.
Under the tree was Lincoln Logs: Frontier Sheriff's Office.
Okay, maybe she half heard me. These were the "logs", but this came in a clear backpack and was designed to build a particular building - still I thought maybe we could work with them, or even adapt them to more free style type of buildings.
From the company:
"Save the day in the Old West by building a Frontier Sheriffs Office. Each backpack includes real wood logs plus colorful figures and accessories.
- Packaged in a vinyl backpack for portability and storage.
- Real Wood Logs
- 63 pieces"
It comes with various sized logs, and a map inside with a few different variations of the same "jail" area. It also comes with 2 men (the sheriff and outlaw), a water trough, and a rope.
Okay, in theory it's a really cute set, and the backpack idea makes it really portable and easy to clean up and store.
The problem is this isn't what he wanted. It didn't even take me saying it - he got frustrated from day 1 when he couldn't "free build" the logs into a "tower" he was trying to make. Since the logs come in certain sizes, and those sizes are limited, and they really can only go together in a few variety of ways, he really could never build "what he wanted to."
After a few frustrated tries he decided we should consult the maps and try to make at least a few of the intended designs. Though set with pictures and instructions, it was frustrating for all of us. There was no way he was going to be able to remotely do this on his own, and I found myself often confused as to what pieces to put together!
Most of the time we tried to play with this, it wound up with him leaving to go do something else, and me calling him when it was finally put together. Even then it wasn't fun to play. He just wasn't interested in a Sheriff's Office, or jail, and he wanted to use characters he had (like Transformers and Teen Titans) to create buildings and such they could hide and and then destroy - not play cops and robbers.
The toy was a huge bust in our house and I haven't had the heart to get rid of it. It sits in our toy box and I push it aside any time we need to get to another toy.
Lincoln Logs: Frontier Sheriff's Office just wasn't what we were looking for!