While we have picked our favorite toys from Toy Fair in the past, this is the year that we will be adding it to our new award system, the BSCkids Bestie Awards. What you see below what we consider our top picks from Toy Fair 2013 (of the products we saw), and what we consider the hot toys for the upcoming year. Stay tuned for an expanded list of what we consider notable items from Toy Fair 2013, but now on to our award-winning picks:
Furreal Friends Cuddles, My Giggly Monkey Pet: We are always on the lookout for animal products that blur that line between reality and play and this year Cuddles the Giggly Monkey was one of the top performers. When we first saw it, we knew that this was going to be one of the hottest toys of the season, and once we found out the price point, we knew that it was going to fly off of the shelves. Cuddles the Giggly Monkey is an animatronics plush that responds to a ton of different interactions and has all sorts of responses to keep your child engaged. She responds like a real baby and the tech that is involved here makes her extremely lifelike and super fun to play with. We were stunned watching Cuddles during the Hasbro demo and know that the kids will love her, plus the look of the toy makes her inviting to play with.
FURREAL FRIENDS CUDDLES, MY GIGGLY MONKEY Pet (HASBRO/Ages 4 years & up/Approx. The FURREAL FRIENDS CUDDLES, MY GIGGLY MONKEY pet is lifelike and engaging, and children will be delighted and entertained by her throughout the day! She has over 100+ responses ranging from laugh out loud silly to super sweet and offers a range of interactive emotion. CUDDLES, MY GIGGLY MONKEY pet will respond to many cherished play patterns, such as feeding, diaper changing, cuddling, tickling, swinging and rocking to sleep, and will react to each in a new surprising way each time. When she first awakens, the CUDDLES, MY GIGGLY MONKEY pet will open her eyes and make sweet noises. Snuggle up to her and she’ll recognize when the child is near, leaning in to cuddle closely. Feed her from her banana-shaped bottle and the CUDDLES, MY GIGGLY MONKEY pet will happily make slurping noises, moving her lips in and out. After a delicious snack, it’s playtime for this baby monkey! Swing CUDDLES, MY GIGGLY MONKEY pet, and she will know and respond with lifelike laughter and silly monkey sounds. Then, tickle her tummy and this loveable monkey will burst into a fit of giggles. When you are not playing with her, CUDDLES, MY GIGGLY MONKEY pet will move her head and make sounds to grab your attention once again. When it’s bedtime for your baby monkey, rock her gently and CUDDLES, MY GIGGLY MONKEY pet will know it’s time to sleep and start to snooze, and then slowly close her eyes. The soft, animatronics, plush CUDDLES, MY GIGGLY MONKEY pet is styled to look like the most adorable baby monkey kids could imagine, and comes with a bottle, pink bow, and removable diaper.
EZ PRO DJ: Yes there are a lot of expensive apps out there that do some cool DJ stuff, but the problem is they aren’t geared towards children nor are they very tactile. The EZ Pro DJ from JAKKS Pacific, however, makes it easy for kids to play the role of super cool hip DJ with a free app and a sturdy turn table product. The software makes it very easy for children to get started and even does tempo matching so that all of your mixes actually sound good (and professional). Our kids are super into music and dancing and I think with one of them working this while the other one dances is going to be a non stop party, let us just hope they don’t put a velvet rope in front of their door and start charging admission. This is going to be one of those toys that I think we have just as much fun with as parents as our children do.
Everyone and anyone can loop, mix and sample songs to create unique mash-ups with EZ PRO DJ from JAKKS Pacific. The EZ PRO DJ deck comes with two “turntables,” simple to use buttons to sample, loop, crossfade and scratch multiple tunes with a simple and easy to use interface and audio connection for speakers and headphones. Featuring proprietary music software, EZ PRO DJ does all the hard work of creating great tunes, allowing people of all ages the opportunity to become a beat-mixing, music-loving DJ. Simply download the FREE EZ PRO DJ app on any iOS smart device to get started, and connect your smart device to the EZ PRO DJ deck to access your own music collection and get mixing.
NFL Game Day: With the influx of all the new technology based toys and games, games you play with cards and a board may not seem to be exciting. Yet NFL Game Day is primed to prove you wrong. We were able to play a few hands of a game that is going to please both children and adults. Exciting and fun for both the beginner and NFL Fantasy veteran, you will be fully engaged by NFL Game Day. With an official license, make sure you pick your favorite team to win the big game. We really enjoyed the fact that you have a game board, cards, and even dice to try to score that touchdown, not everything has to be electronic.
NFL Game Day takes the playing field to a new dimension with board game play that teaches the rules of NFL football – engaging the novice NFL fan while challenging even the savviest. This family-friendly game puts players at the coach’s table and tests offensive, defensive and special team play in rivalries of fans’ own imaginations.
LEGO Legends of Chima: With the success of Ninjago, LEGO introduces something new with Chima. Instead of ninjas we have heroes that are different types of animals. Like a good product line from the 80’s, LEGO will be putting out a full product line and pairing it with an original television series. I think they have a winner here, I just hope that they are not competing with themselves in the same market as Ninjago. We were really impressed with the characters and the play sets that they will make available and the goal of obtaining the power of CHI will really get the imagination going. I can already see the TV movies, Comics, and game possibilities.
LEGO Legends of Chima is a new original property that combines the fun of building with role play, social competitive play and digital and video game play. Builders compete via heroic animal characters, such as a lion, gorilla or crocodile, to obtain the power of CHI. Digital games and an original television series will launch later in the year.
Hexbug Nano V2: This was the year that the Hexbug products hit it big with our boys and even our young girl. They setup tracks and would race them in the playroom, giving each Nano their distinct name. They would then fill up notebooks of racing records for them. It was easy enough for our daughter to play as well and a great time was had by all. This year Hexbug has upped their game introducing the Nano V2 that will climb through tubes and make exciting drops. We love the fact that you can build the track UP rather than OUT saving some space on the floor. The kids are really looking forward to starting some new races with the Nano V2.
An all-new breed of gravity defying HEXBUG Nanos that can now climb up, vertically, horizontally, around corners, loops and through tubes, to the tip top of any Nano V2 habitat set. Kids can build an infinite variety of environments for their HEXBUG Nano V2 collection, with the Starter Set, Tower Loop, Barrel Roll, Crow’s Nest and Black Hole Sets. HEXBUG Nano V2 engages the whole family in fun creative building time.
Zoomer: Spinmaster made us rethink toys this year with the introduction of three products that made our list. Zoomer was the first product that really amazed us with its ability to play the role of Lectronimo (Look up that Jetsons reference). Zoomer is voice activated and has tons of different things he can do and learn, but they have put together the full package. Zoomer looks like a quality product and does well on the carpet or hardwood floor. So many different thoughts on this product. You could use it to test your childrens ability to take care of a real dog, you could use Zoomer as your dog if you are allergic or live in a place that won’t let you have pets, and many other things. Zoomer really is the next best thing to a real dog.
Zoomer: Zoomer is the perfect family pet! This cute, silly and interactive dog is all of the fun and none of the responsibility. Kids can easily play with Zoomer because he actually listens and learns. And just like any other dog, he even sometimes forgets! With life-like expressions and voice activated commands, Zoomer is the most technologically advanced robotic dog ever made.
Flutterbye Fairies: When I was younger I had dreams that toys like this would exist and now we have Flutterby Fairies (there is a sphere version for boys). For all those kids that want to see that flying faerie, this product actually delivers on the promise of flight. If you played that game where you try to keep the balloon from touching the ground, it works like that. You can hold your hand underneath it and guide it around the room or have it just hover off of the floor. I wouldn’t mind seeing the same system for a soldier type product either for the boys, but Flutterbye Fairies really delivers in play time.
Flutterbye Fairies: The magic of fairies is real! This is the only fairy that a girl can fly, simply by the palm of her hand. These beautiful fairies are inspired by flowers and star dust, bringing love and sweet dreams to all little girls who fly her.
Spy Gear’s Panosphere 360 Spy Cam: I just can’t believe that kids have access to such cool products now, this is a spy cam that would make James Bond jealous. This is a spy cam that you can put somewhere and not have to worry about making sure you capture all of the action because it gives you a full 360 access to the video with special software after you have recorded. Yes, that does mean that after you recorded and you want to see behind you, that is ok, because you have access to do that. It is also nice that they allow you to upgrade the memory and it comes with all sorts of different mounting tools. What this really means is that as parents we have to be a little bit more careful around the house!
Spy Gear’s Panosphere 360 Spy Cam: Taking covert surveillance to a new level, the Panosphere 360 Spy Cam is a revolution in camera technology. It features full HD video capabilities with a twist. No longer do you have to worry about getting your target in frame, the Panosphere Cam takes video in a full 360 degrees, capturing everything around it and above it at the same time. Complete with special software, the Cam allows the viewer to capture the best action and have full control during playback to decide what they want to view, which makes for a new video every time you watch it. Each Panosphere comes with multiple mounting tools to allow you to deploy it into action, as well as a 2GB Micro SD card that can be removed and upgraded. The Panosphere 360 Spy Cam is the perfect camera for any mission.
Disney Infinity: Disney Infinity is just a game changer, with the best license in the world. We were able to see actual gameplay as well as interact with the product and we were left with our jaw on the floor. The “Toy Box” mode was amazing because you were able to actually build your own world, and then re-skin it in an instant to another licensed theme. So your TRON park needs to be turned into a Nightmare Before Christmas park, no worries they have you covered. The game itself was awesome, with the ability to play as many of the different characters in their own licensed area.
Disney Infinity: Welcome to Disney INFINITY! A new video game where a spark of imagination unlocks the freedom to play with some of your favorite Disney and Disney/Pixar worlds like never before!
Barbie™ Digital Makeover Mirror: If you have ever seen your child come out of your bedroom with all sorts of your expensive makeup mashed on their face you will appreciate what this product brings to the table. As for the fact that it needs an iPad, just think about how much expensive carpet, furniture, and make-up will be saved with a product like this.
Barbie™ Digital Makeover Mirror: Enjoy a fabulous, makeup-free makeover with the Barbie™ Makeover Mirror. Transform an iPad® into a digital mirror by sliding it into the vanity frame. Girls can then look into the “mirror” and select options like eye shadow, lipstick, color, and glitter. Use the included applicator to apply virtual makeup to the girl’s live image on the iPad® screen! Facial tracking technology keeps the digital makeup in place as the girl moves, just like she’s really wearing it! Girls can make a digital scrapbook of their favorite makeover looks.
BSCKids Besties – Toy Fair 2013 Edition has shown you what we have picked as our favorite products from the show, and what we consider the hot toys for 2013. You can also find our larger list of notable items from Toy Fair 2013 and let us know if you had a favorite that we did not mention. Congratulations to all the winners of the BSCKids Besties Award for 2013 and stay tuned as we provide a bunch of videos in the coming weeks.