After my recent trip to the 2012 London Toy Fair, I’ve decided that instead of writing a bit long boring column all about people you don’t know and annoying things that happened to me along the way that I’m going to go and put all of my efforts into one of my famous Top 10 lists. I thought that this would be a great way for letting you all know all the best new toys that I enjoyed on the day, and what I think will do really well this year.
As always this list isn’t in any sort of order of importance, it’s just the top 10 products that I enjoyed most at the show this year.
Moshi Monsters were to be found absolutely everywhere at Toy Fair, or is it just that I have a Moshi crazed youngster at home so I see them everywhere I go …..No they were everywhere At Toy Fair!
My favourite of the new Moshi merchandise by far is the new Moshling Zoo Storage Centre Playset from Vivid Imaginations
Last Year’s Moshling Treehouse is great for playing and obviously you can store your Moshi’s there, but this new storage centre is much better equipped for the job. For a start it’s got nice big boxes for your moshlings to stand up in, much bigger than the hidey holes on the tree, and you get to put a little name tag underneath them.
Looks like a Moshi version of celebrity squares!
|Moshi Monsters Moshling Zoo (includes One Exclusive Moshling) (Amazon)||
Got to see the lovely Steve Backshall from a distance, as he put in an appearance at the Character Options stand to launch their new line of Deadly 60 toys.
It’s amazing how much shorter he was than I imagined. Anyway back to the range.
Firstly Deadly 60 will be joining the Character Building line of construction toys, with playsets, blind packs and 3 pack assortments available.
There will also be a line of Deadly 60 Steve Backshall dolls, all in various different adventurey type situations. I saw Steve in a canoe in the Deadly Amazon set, and also Steve in a diver’s suit (which I think was a swimming with Sharks set)
You really cannot underestimate the appeal of Deadly 60 to young boys. You only have to look at the CBBC schedule to see that it’s probably one of if not the most popular programme they have at the moment. So I can see this range being a massive success for character.
It may be a bit controversial at the moment to say this but…I actually think the Lego Friends range of Lego more suited to girls is a great idea. There I said it.
I was speaking to some other parents in the playground this week and they were asking me what toys I thought were good at the moment. As soon as I mentioned the new Lego Friends City Park Cafe, Heartlake Vet and Olivia’s House sets they all agreed that some girly sets from Lego were long overdue.
I don’t see why there is a fuss over Lego Friends, but Lego Star Wars, Batman, Super Heroes, Hero Factory, all more male orientated and marketed are OK. Seems like a lot of fuss over nothing if you ask me.
Anyway the proof will come with the sales, and I cannot imagine such gorgeous and beautifully imagined sets will have a problem.
Knowing my boys taste in toys mostly consist of things that you can collect, and things that you can fight with, I just knew that the Gyro-Botz would capture their imagination
Gyro-Botz are ‘Zero Gravity Warriors” which you can play with 3 way
1) Bounce them as high as you can
2)Pull the cord to Rev up your Gyro-Bot and watch it spin around on the ground
3)Rev your Gyro-Bot and then send them into battle. The one which spins the longest is the winner.
As well as the Gyro-Botz characters, there is also a Gyro-Botz Battle Arena available for all your dueling needs.
Trading Card games are something that my 6yr old son is just getting into. Pokemon, Yu-Gi-Oh, he’s into everything like that.
The only problem I have with this, is that apart from collecting all the cards he don’t do anything else with them. The actual game is just too complicated for me to understand, so there is no way I can explain it to him so we can play together.
That’s why I think Redakai is going to be such a big success. This totally new revolutionary trading card game uses Blast3D technology meaning you can actually see on the card as you play it what damage has been inflicted, how much health you have left, what the attack actually looked like. Finally meaning me and Thomas can have an actual card battle against each other where we know what were doing.
Redakai is really something that needs to be seen first hand to fully understand. You can check out a really informative video on the Redakai Youtube channel which explains the game much better than I can, plus it means you can see the cards in action.
There are hundred’s of stalls at Toy Fair, and so many people milling about and thousands of different things to look at, That it takes a lot to stand out from the crowd.
However the magician guy (I’m so sorry I didn’t get his name) showing casing the Fantasma Magic range over on the Wowwee stand did an astounding job, and left me truly stunned with some of his tricks.
He really got my interest when he started blowing ordinary bubbles that then suddenly turned hard into bouncy balls. Then he carried on astounding me with a trick in which he seemed to bite a chunk out of an Oreo, only to then spit it out and it be whole again. Amazing!
All of the tricks he showed me could apparently be easily learnt thanks to the included DVD instruction video, made especially easy for younger magicians to understand and learn.
There were a few different sets he talked me through, but all the makings of an excellent kiddie magic box. I will definitely be purchasing one of these sets when I see them available.
However much of a sucker I am for the latest cartoon series action figures, or playsets based around the latest blockbuster film, I’ll always love a beautifully designed and well made wooden toy that little bit more.
I’m pleased to say that there were plenty of wonderful wooden toy retailers at Toy Fair with some stunning pieces that really make me wish that I had another little one so I could start collecting younger toys all over again. I say this as most wooden toys seem to be aimed at the baby and toddler stage.
One exception to that rule seems to be the Heritage Playsets from Bigjigs Toys. There are lots of different playlet environments to choose from, my personal favorites being Dino Island, Polar Glacier, Rose Cottage and King Arthur’s Castle.
Each Set comes with all the figures, animals or accessories that you need to create a wonderful playtime adventure. In my opinion the Heritage Playsets are one of the rare wooden toys that your child will enjoy long after they are up and off to School and Reception. The Dino Island especially is something that I can see children even as old as 8 or 9 having fun with.
Bigjigs Toys don’t sell directly to the public as they are keen to support local independent toy shops. Luckily you can easily check for your local Bigjigs Toys stockist on their website.
With all the glitz and glamour of the Toy Fair, this new edition of a classic board game might seem like a bit of a weird choice.
The thing is I had a go of this, and it is really fun. Exactly the kind of game I can see us as a family playing on a Sunday night, and having a right laugh doing so.
The rules and premise of the game are simple enough. Press down on top of the Poppin Hoppies, and catch them when they pop up. You need to catch specific colours in order to collect the right pieces to complete your puzzle man and win the game.
The only problem is that you never know when the Poppin Hoppies are going to pop, they might all pop at once, they might not.
It sounds so simple, and it really is, but I bet you toddlers will love this.
University Games had loads of other great games and puzzles on their stand too like Pointless (which I’m going to review shortly), 20 Questions for Kids, 5 Second rule and a wonderful Little Suzy’s Zoo range.
Mike The Knight Action Playsets
This set immediately caught my eye on the Character Options stand.
I just love big playsets that totally capture the look and feel of the tv or film they are based upon so wonderfully, and the Mike The Knight Action Playset does just that, Instantly transporting your toddlers into Mike’s medieval world of Glendragon.
Apart from the Action Playset the whole Mike The Knight range was pretty awesome too, with lots of plushes and dolls of Mike and his dragon friend Squirt. The Mission sets which come with a foam sword, and mike style helmet are too cute.
Being an 80’s girl I just had to have the new Thundercats range on the list didn’t I.
I’m very pleased to say that both Thomas and Jacob are following in mine and hubbys footsteps by absolutely;y loving the new show. For us it was the highlight of our Christmas TV.
I always wanted some Thundercats toys growing up, but alas it was not to be. So this time around now I hold the purse strings I’m going to make it happen!
The figures are all amazingly cool, I love that as well as the new style of Lion-o, Tygra and friends you can also get some them in the classic version too.
The star of the show has to be the one and only Sword of Omens though doesn’t it. It lights up, plays sounds and phrases from the show, plus it’s an extender!
What more can you ask for?