I recently acquired 3 of the Battle Machines Laser Battle RCs From Jada Toys. One, the red Ford Mustang GT came from a single pack. The other two -- a blue Chevy Camaro SS and a silver Chevy Silverado Dooley -- were in a twin pack. My son Tyler and I and my friend Kyle love having laser battles. All my other friends once they got a chance to play said that they are going to get one as well. I can see it now -- this is going to develop into a team competition thing whenever we can all get together.
Body Styles and Vehicle Differences
The Battle Machines RCs have 3 body styles to choose from: 1969 Chevy Camaro SS, Ford Mustang GT, Chevy Silverado Dually. The Camaro and the Silverado Dually have 3 different variations. The Mustang has four different variations with the fourth one being a police car which resembles Barricade from the first Transformer movie. All three body styles have the same three basic colors -- Red, Silver, Blue -- with the exception of the Mustang GT Police car. This give you a total ten different Battle Machine RC to choose from, but only six can run at a time without frequency interference.
There are differences between the single and twin packs. The single pack not only comes with a transmitter and RC but also a targeting laser scope attachment that fits on the transmitter. This allows for solo play.
The Battle Machines RCs have a setting that is called auto pilot mode which causes the battle machine RC to run around on its own. This will let a single person use the targeting laser scope attachment to shoot at the Battle Machines RC to sharpen their aiming skills. Or, two people could share a vehicle -- competing by seeing who can tag the RC in the least amount of time.
The twin pack doesn't come with a targeting laser scope attachment for the transmitters because there are two RC battle machines to play against one another. The RCs are controlled by the transmitters and take aim at each other in a game of laser tag. They are a lot of fun to play around with especially if you have three or more running about.
Frequency Selection for Multiple Players
The auto pilot setting on bottom of car is for single player mode with a Battle Machine RC.© M. James
There are two main frequency channels to choose from: 27MHz and 49MHz. Within those two frequencies there are three selectable bands of A,B and C on both the transmitter and the RC vehicle itself. This allows for a total of up to six players to do battle as a team effort of three on three or to have an all out "you're on your own" laser battle scenario.
If you do plan to use 6 Battle Machines at once, be sure to get 3 on the 27MHz and 3 on the 49MHz frequencies for a total of 6 individual frequencies for group play.
Batteries and Battle Grounds
With every toy grade RC (or any electronic toy) comes the age old question, "How many and what kind of batteries do I need?" If you're giving these as a gift, give the batteries too. For the transmitter you are going to need a 9 volt battery. The RC car or truck will need a total of 4 AA batteries. If you bought the single pack version you will need two AA batteries for the laser scope attachment.
Now for the battle grounds. You will definitely want to make sure you have a lot of room to run around. Why? Because for every hit you take your Battle Machine will lose control for a brief second to let the driver know that he or she has been hit. This continues for a total of two hits after you get tagged for the third time your Battle Machine will take off and drive erratically for a few seconds and make a crashing sound to signify that you are totalled and no longer in the game (at least until you reset and start over). So make sure to have plenty of space for the out of control reaction of the vehicles in the game -- such as a parking lot or basketball court.
Age Recommendation for the Battle Machines Laser Battle RCs
The gun on the back of truck looks cool but it's just for show. You can only tag opponents from the hood-mounted cannon.© M. James
In my opinion Battle Machine RCs are suited for all ages 6 and up. Even adults will find that these RCs are a lot of fun. If you are going to do battle in a parking lot situation I strongly suggest that an adult be present for the safety of the children. Roping of a section of the parking lot if allowed would be a great idea just to be safe. I would also suggest that barriers be set up for the RCs to keep them from getting run over by a real car or truck. That would put an unpleasant, premature end to your laser battle.
See page 2 of this review for more on game play, durability, and pros and cons of the Jada Toys Battle Machines Laser Battle RCs.