"Big Trak is back, enabling parents of today to buy one of the most memorable toys from their past and bring it back to life for their own children to enjoy..." - Yeah, right! Who is honestly going to let their kids anywhere near their Bigtrak?
There are a lot of subtle differences between this and the original - but they are subtle; it's still great fun. The battery cover is now screwed in place rather than held on with a plastic tab. It is far more shiny than the original and actually white rather than "kind of white". The little red cover on the power switch actually stays put, the keypad is matt finish rather than glossy and the colours are brighter... Well you get the idea, little details. Many are improvements, some are just minor differences.
Size wise I think it is unchanged. It still has the slightly quirky programming with a single "x2" and angles measured in minutes (so a complete revolution is 60, rather than 360) just like the original.
What's wrong with it? Well the stickers are still a pain to get on straight (though I fancy I did a better job than I did as a child). They haven't done the transporter, or even said they will (it would be nice). Oddly I miss the original "MB" logo... weird I know. The light for the "Photon Canon" is far dimmer than the original (which was really bright) but it's an LED now so won't need replacing (the old one had a screw in bulb that used to be easy to buy - not sure where you'd get one now... so it's probably just as well). But all in all this is an excellent reproduction and very faithful to the original, it captures everything that matters really well. The biggest cosmetic change is the blue cover over the "Photon Canon" doesn't have a gap at the front anymore (which is how I know they used the original artwork - they haven't noticed this on the back of the box).
In the important things this is the same as the original; the same little tune before and after running the sequence of instructions, and yes, the "Photon Canon" noise is still very loud (it'll bring back happy memories of your mother complaining about it - and your "significant other" will probably have a similar tone). All the original detailing is faithfully reproduced.
Your pets will still absolutely hate it. You'll still wonder around the house measuring in "bigtrak lengths" (every "1" forward or backward is it's own length) to get it to go where you want. Even the box is the same (it actually has the original artwork, which doesn't quite match the new model - just the old "MB" stickers have been blotted out in favour of the new logo). It's all gloriously familiar.
If you liked the original Bigtrak, you'll like this. If (like me) you think the original Bigtrak was the best toy from your childhood, well you are going to absolutely love this. I've been looking forward to this since I first heard they were bringing it back, and it doesn't disappoint. If I were going to pick one toy for them to bring back, it would have been Bigtrak, and they've not ruined it with "improvements" that really aren't.
Will today's children get as much from Bigtrak as my generation? I don't care, they're not paying with mine!