Quercetti has been making education toys for over 60 years from their headquarters in Italy and their marble runs are often touted as the best money can buy. The 80 piece Vortis set is a fantastic base set for any child who is new to building marble runs. There are enough pieces to keep them entertained and have the open ended ability to build new tracks but it won’t overwhelm them like the Vorbis 224 piece set might.
Marble runs tend to work best when placed on harder surfaces such as a table or laminate floor but this Vorbis set has extra large bases so work well even on carpet although the higher you build the less stable it becomes, particularly if you put a spiral piece near the top. This set comes with a vortex chamber which if the marble enters at some speed will send it whirling round and round until it drops through the hole. The spiral tracks are a lesson in momentum as the marble speeds up as the spiral gets tighter and tighter which the extra long bridges mean the marble run can grow out as well as up.
Quercetti have always given a lot of attention to quality and while some cheaper sets can feel fragile or lose when you fit the pieces together, the Vorbis set is made from tough, durable and washable plastic. The locking mechanism is strong and secure but not too tight and if your child loves playing with it so much you can always buy additional sets to allow them to experiment with building even bigger marble runs.
The video below shows this 80 piece Quercetti Vortis marble run in action. You can see the size of the marble kit, which takes some parents by surprise.
This marble run has an age rating of 8+ but it does seem many parents are buying this for their 4 or 5 year olds and then having concerns about how easy it is to construct. The feedback seems to be that if the child is 6 or younger they will need help to build this marble run as it can be a little bit complex. Another concern is that the included marbles are plastic rather than glass and that the heavier glass marbles do not work as well on this set.