Review: HexBug Nano Zip Line Starter Set, Hexbugs Inch Closer to World Domination

by nessel on March 29, 2012

Hexbug Zipline Starter Set

HEXBUGs are awesome, and I’m not just kissing up to them because one day they will rule the world.  I know I should be objective when doing a product review, but I also think full disclosure is important, so I am now disclosing that I am a huge HEXBUG fan.  I love the way they vibrate, skirt around and are somehow completely mesmerizing to watch.  Apparently I am not alone, HEXBUG Habitat sets have won a Toy of the Year Award (TOTY) for the last 2 years running.

My love of Hexbugs is exactly why I was scared to test out the new HEXBUG Nano Zip Line Starter Set.  What if the Zip line set was a flop, would it tarnish my image of all things HEXBUG?  Fortunately, we will never know the answer to that question, because the Zip Line set adds even more fun to the world of HEXBUGs…and one step closer to their plan of world domination!

Let’s Take a Look At Our Video Review of The HEXBUG Nano Zip Line Starter Set…

A Simple Backpack and The HEXBUGs Are Ready To Fly

As the video shows, the whole zip line idea is perfect in its simplicity.  Clip the “backpack” onto any HEXBUG Nano and when they come to a zip line, they attack on, slide down and then they get off.  No buttons to push, no levers to pull, in classic HEXBUG form, the little Nanos just fly down the zipline and then continue to scurry about.

What Exactly Comes in the HEXBUG Nano Zipline Starter Set?

The HEXBUG Nano Zip Line Starter Set includes 23 easy-connect pieces and one extremely rare Nano mutation with removable zip line backpack.  In total you get 4 backpacks, so if you already have 3 Nano Hexbugs, they too can play on the zip line.  Basically the video shows all the tracks and curves you get in this starter set, except we did add one straight track in the video setup.

If you have other HEXBUG habitats or play sets you can of course combine them with the Zip line starter set.  The kids had a lot of fun building different structures and seeing how they could work a zip line into the habitat.  If the Zip Line Starter Set is going to be your child’s introduction to HEXBUGs, it is a great place to start.  Kids will have fun watching  the HEXBUG race around and then go down the rope, but things really get more exciting when you add more HEXBUGs and more tracks.

The Not So Nano HEXBUG Issue

The kids all had a great time playing with the Zip Line starter set, but there is one issue that arises with the addition of the backpack to the Nano HEXBUGs.  The Nanos are just a little bit less Nano sized with that zip line back pack clip on.  Normally if two Nanos are coming at each other, there is enough room on the track for the Nanos to squeeze by and continue on.  As we show in the video, this is not true with the backpacks on, so you need to intervene and help them out.  Also, some low overhangs from other sets can cause problems.

How big an issue this is, really depends on how your kids like to play with HEXBUGs.  If your kids are into letting the HEXBUGS go, with no human interaction – sort of like real bugs fighting it out in a survival of the fittest game – the Nanos getting stuck more often is a problem.   On the other hand, if your kids like pushing the little Nanos all around and being hands-on with the bugs, the backpack size issue does not create many problems.

Conclusion: HEXBUG Nano Zip Line Starter Set,  Takes Nanos To New Heights

Going down a ramp is so 2011.  For 2012, really the only way to get from a higher level down to the ground is a Zip Line!  The HEXBUG Nano Zip Line set is simple, mesmerizing fun.  We love how you don’t need to attach the HEXBUGs to the zip line, they just automatically attach on and off at the bottom.  Yes, the extra width of the backpack causes some problems, but it is a price we will pay to have flying HEXBUGs!

More Information:

The HEXBUG Nano Zip Line Starter Set Retails for $24.99.  Visit the HEXBUG site.

Buy the HEXBUG Nano Zip Line Starter Set at Amazon.Com

Watch our Video Review of the HEXBUG Nano Zipline Set

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  • Anonymous

    My son says this looks pretty cool

  • LibrarianNoelle

    We love HEXBUGS in our house.  Isabelle asked for more for her birthday.  Great fun!

  • Mary

    When HEXBUGS first came out a few years ago, I wasn’t “sold” — what’s the big deal?  Well, we now have the HIVE and a HABITAT and nanos that glow in the dark, etc. etc., and my boys and their friends spend HOURS making up mazes and games for their bugs.  We have the zipline, it encourages alot of play and design. 

  • Martin Exner

    Dear Nessel! The Nano is simply incredible…i love it!-) But im not a fan of the habitat-sets…to me they are too expensive and you have too little room for creativity. My 4-year-old son and I made some minigames with a bunch of Nano’s and a hole lot of LEGO Dublos…
    cat vs. mouse, robosoccer and Capture The Flag.

    I would love for you to read my blogpost about it here: (I explain the learning potentials)

    and see the video documenting the progress here:
    Feel free to tell me that Im all wrong and an idiot, or maybe the opposite ;-)

    Thank you very much!

    Martin Exner
    Masters of IT Didactic Design
    University of Education
    Copenhagen, Denmark

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