Gabriel doesn't trust his little brothers at the moment. He's pretty sure they're sneaking into his bedroom and playing with his toys when he's downstairs. So recently he's been employing some classic spy tactics to catch them out - like the old string-across-the-floor trick to trip up intruders (and lucky Mum when she's carrying an armload of laundry), or arranging his books by the door so their disturbance signals unwanted visitors.
But over the last couple of weeks his secret missions have gone up a few notches, with the introduction of his SpyX Micro Gear Set, kindly sent to us by Wire PR. Surveillance, Communication, Concealment is what's promised on the box - and that's exactly what Gabriel's been up to.
Firstly, any decent spy needs a utility belt to keep their equipment safe. Gabriel now has a sturdy and adjustable utility belt, with belt clips on which he can hang his spy tools. He needed some help from me threading the clips on to the belt and adjusting it, but now set up he's having no problems taking it on and off, and attaching and removing his gadgets.
The tool that he's using the most is his Micro Motion Alarm. It detects motion from five feet away and is set up in Gabriel's room during the day while he's at school, so any time I enter his room to tidy or put clothes away I get quite the surprise. It also detects vibrations, though Gabriel hasn't switched it to that mode yet. He really loves it and is getting lots of play out of it.
Gabriel's other favourite tool is the Invisible Pen. It's brilliant, and nothing like many of the cheap ones you get which are disappointingly basic. This one writes at one end and has an UV light at the other, and Gabriel is having lots of fun using it. It's nice and sturdy so I'm hoping it works for a long time - there's no sign of it drying out yet. And because it clips on to his utility belt, Gabriel's got somewhere to store it when it's not in use, so he hasn't lost it!
Another device in the set is the Micro Spy Light. It's been shone in my eyes quite few times during Gabriel's covert operations so I can confirm it's sufficiently powerful. It fits over the ear looking very professional, and has a pointer style LED light that Gabriel's had great fun experimenting with - as well as chasing his brothers around the house with it.
The fourth tool is the Micro Listener, which Gabriel is finding useful for listening in on his brothers' conversations - to determine whether they're posing any immediate threat to his privacy. I've come across him a few times with his ear piece in, earnestly pressed up against their bedroom door.
For the price, the Spy X Micro Gear Set is great value - it's RRP £19.99 but currently less on Amazon. The tools aren't just gimmicks but fully functioning and pretty robust. I was a little sceptical before they arrived, but they work well and are still going strong after a few week's tough play. They've encouraged lots of imaginative games with the boys, and have helped Gabriel a great deal with his room monitoring! One warning though - you'll need a lot of batteries so stock up if your spy wants to start their missions right away.
There are other devices in the SpyX range so I'll be getting a few more to add to Gabriel's arsenal (he wants the Recon Watch for his birthday), or maybe a few for his brothers at Christmas so they can beat Gabriel at his own game.
If you're looking for a toy that will keep the kids entertained (and quiet when they head off on stealth missions) I thoroughly recommend this little set. It's perfect for any children wanting to keep their siblings (or pets, or parents!) under surveillance.
We were sent the SpyX Micro Gear Set for free in return for an honest, impartial review. All thoughts, words and images are my own.
You can purchase SpyX Micro Gear Set from Argos, Amazon and other toyshops.