One Drop Kraken
Reviewed by Chris Rhoads
January 29, 2017
Back in 2015, One Drop announced that it had partnered with video game developer Re-Logic to bring real world yo-yo products to their extremely popular 2D sandbox game Terraria. While Terraria brought the real world into the digital realm, One Drop returned the favor by bringing the Terrarian to life in all its wide-bodied aluminum glory. The Terrarian has gone on to become one of One Drop’s best sellers, showing that you should never overlook the power of a high-quality tie in. It looks like both companies have decided to extend their relationship with another real-life counterpart being brought out of the digital realm in the form of the One Drop Kraken. The Kraken is the second real life yo-yo from the game and the third most powerful in game, behind the Eye of Chthulu and the Terrarian. The Terrarian was a super wide, Side Effect compatible yo-yo that was fun to play, let’s see what wacky hijinks One Drop has packed into this one.
• Diameter: 60 mm
• Width: 45 mm
• Gap: 4.45 mm
• Weight: 65.25 mm
• Bearing: One Drop 10-Ball
• Response: Flow Groove Pads
Where the Terrarian was an ultra-wide design, the Kraken goes in a different direction making the Kraken a 60mm super diameter design. The Kraken profile is an organic H-Shape with bulbous rims that transition to a rounded catch zone with a step at the gap. The massive cup is cavernous in design with a small, flat cut under the rim that transitions to the swooping inner walls that lead to the nearly flat floor. The floor does angle up to an ever so slight point at the center but you really have to go hunting for it. The Kraken comes in several splash finishes, all named for regions from the world of Terraria, as well as a nickel plated finish. All Krakens come tumbled in One Drop’s Pyramatte finish which I found grinds quite well on this large but light yo-yo. While the Kraken may appear to be quite unwieldy with its large design, it is extremely easy to hold and comfortable both in the hand and during play, a quality that many have come to expect from a One Drop design.
The Kraken is deceptive. Once pulled from the box you would expect it to be an absolute brick on the string. What you get is a featherweight 65-gram giant that moves quickly with stability and ease on the string. It was actually quite jarring when you throw it for the first time. From personal experience, I gave it a hefty throw because I expected it to need it… that was a mistake and I almost took my head off. That old expression about not judging a book by its cover also applies to yo-yos.
Response and Bearing
The Kraken ships with One Drop’s standard set up, their 10-Ball Bearing and their Flow Groove pads. The pads have become a staple in the community thanks to their stopping power, long life, and quick break in time. The bearing has also become a staple in the community due to their deserved reputation for being smooth, quiet, and giving incredible spin times.
As I said in the Construction section, the Kraken takes a design spec and amps it up. Just like its sibling, the Terrarian, did. Where the Terrarian played with the width, the Kraken is maximizing the diameter. That being said the 60mm diameter Kraken is a seriously large yo-yo. While it may look like it could be cumbersome, it actually plays quite well on the string. It is quick, it is nimble, and I never found I was having a problem with getting it caught on the string when it shouldn’t. In fact, I would say this is an extremely easy yo-yo to use. Why… because it is such a large target to hit. Black Hops, Gyro Flop, Hooks, and Suicide, even my mediocre horizontal play… all these were easy for me to pull off on this large chunk of aluminum flying through the air. The only thing I could see being an issue is Chopstick Mounts for those with small hands. Grinds were quite serviceable thanks to the Pyramatte finish, although I would have preferred One Drop’s new blast finish. At the end of the day though, I can see that it was a welcome compromise in order to hit the $65 price point that the Kraken retails for.
I am not usually one for oversized yo-yos. While they are fun at first, they grow frustrating over time. I have found that they have a noticeable kickback on the initial throw and are slow and sluggish on the string. The Kraken is none of those things and ends up being a yo-yo I am really quite fond of. Not only that but it has me rethinking my opinion of oversized yo-yos and now searching out others that can give me the same level of fun that this one did, especially when you factor in the $65 price point. You end up getting quite a bit for your money.