It’s been a big year for toys with re-imagined classics and tablet technology trickling down to the playroom. We turned to toy reviewer Dan Nessel of DadDoes.com for his picks for the Most Memorable New Product Launches in the toy category this year.
Nintendo is looking to shake up the video game industry with the Nintendo Wii U. Rather than compete with the PS3 and Xbox 360 on purely power and graphics, the Wii U introduces a whole new way to play. Every Wii U will come with a GamePad controller, basically a tablet that works with the Wii U. The GamePad introduces a second screen and changes the way video games are played.
Nintendo has held a number of Wii U Experience events for the press and video game lovers to create a buzz around the system and it looks to be working. Within days of the announcement that the Wii would be available on November 18th, stores such as Target, Best Buy and Toys R Us had stopped taking pre-orders due to high demand.
Furby is back! While it is unlikely the new Furby will match the craziness that surrounded the original Furby in 1998, Furby is still looking to be a hot toy for the 2012 holiday season. The new Furby has new features to make him/her more interactive and you can now use an iPhone/iPad App to play with Furby.
Hasbro has done a big social media push for Furby and retailers are expecting high demand. Furby has already been named to the Toys R Us, Walmart and Kmart Top Toy lists.
Razor puts a spin on the classic 3 wheel trike…literally. The Flash Rider 360 turns and drifts on dual inclined caster wheels, so kids can easily do full 360 spins. In addition to the spinning fun, The Flash Rider 360 has a Spark Bar, so now kids can spin and spark.
The Razor Flash Rider 360 was a hit at the 2012 International Toy Fair in NYC and was featured on ABC’s The View. In addition, The Flash Rider 360 was named a Most Wanted Toy by Time To Play.
The original LeapPad was a hit and all indications are that the LeapPad 2 will be even more popular with technology loving kids. At its June 2012 release, the LeapPad 2 sold more units in two days than the LeapPad 1 did in a week.
The LeapPad 2, is the next generation of the #1 kid’s learning tablet (LeapPad1), bringing higher performance, new features and an extensive library filled with learning and creative content.
A hot trend this year is remote control (R/C) toys that do more than just drive or fly. Air Hogs has created the ultimate R/C toy for boys – the Air Hogs Hover Assault. The Hover Assault is a car that you can drive, but with the press of a button the car takes off and becomes a flying car. It gets even better, press another button on the remote and fire missiles from your flying car.
Air Hogs has created buzz for the Hover Assault with a number of commercial spots, online videos and via social media. Air Hogs Hover Assault was named to both the Walmart Top 20 Holiday Toy List and the Kmart Fab 15 Holiday Toy list.
What do you think of Dan’s picks? Check back for more expert product selections, and for the results of the Most Memorable New Product Launch survey coming later this year.