Each and every single year a new list of the “Best New Toys” hits the market (usually right before Black Friday and the kickoff of the holiday season), and each and every year most of those toys miss their mark and never really reach the kind of popularity that people had expected them to.
However, when you visit the annual New York City Toy Fair and see the kind of lineup that 2016 has produced, you’re looking at an all-star cast of heavy hitters and big-time sluggers that will make for a very, very interesting upcoming holiday season.
Toys aren’t “toys” anymore
Toys have always been shifting, changing, and evolving almost from the moment that the first toy was made, and today is no different. These toys are a little bit like the toys that you used to play with when you were a child, but at the same time something else entirely.
It’s been very exciting to watch as the world of toys changes and evolved over time, but it’s also difficult not to remember (usually clouded with a heavy dose of nostalgia) what it used to be like playing with your favorite toys and how simple they seem now by comparison.
That’s why it is so important to remember that toys aren’t exactly “toys” any longer.
New kids toys are something else entirely, not just something used to distract or to entertain children, but something that can help them better understand the world around them, expedite their development, and make sure that they are as well-adjusted and as happy as humanly possible. Often they can also be tied in with the latest movies like the Minions.
It’s a lot to ask of toys, but the new ones seem to be up to the task at hand.
Technology focused toys are probably the hottest options on the market today
You are definitely going to have a bit of a struggle finding too terribly many toys that aren’t somehow infused with the latest and greatest advanced technology available on the market today. Ever heard of Webkinz? This a great example of the online push for technology toys and kids are crazy for it!
Gone (almost for good) are the days of the yo-yo and paddle ball, replaced completely by digital versions of those two traditional favorites and so many more. Kids toys today almost always run off of batteries (sometimes replaceable and sometimes rechargeable), and it’s a bit of an uphill battle trying to find any “analog” toys that aren’t going to be ignored faster than you ever thought possible.
RC Cars and drone toys are two categories that have become really popular of late. Technology has come a long way from the days of batteries running out after an hour of use and they can provide a lot of entertainment for a reasonable cash outlay.
Traditional toy favorites are being revamped and overhauled almost completely
Legos are still some of the most popular toys on the planet (and likely always will be), though even they have been revamped and overhauled somewhat in the last few years.
Sure, they are still everyone’s favorite building blocks, but they are now being sold in all different kinds of configurations and kits – many of them licensed from other popular properties – that gives them a bit of a different feel than they had in the past.
Then of course you have toys like the Viewmaster (one of the hottest toys in the 1980s) that has been overhauled completely with the help of Google to provide a virtual look into the world around kids. The end result is something similar to the original Viewmaster, but something else entirely at the exact same time.
Toys that focus on education, social skills, and development are becoming a lot more fun than they ever were in the past
Finally, you’re going to recognize that the hot toys today are less focused on playtime and playtime alone but instead more focused on making sure that children are educated, are able to build valuable social skills, and enjoy an expedited developmental process while enjoying everything that these toys bring to the table.
It’s not all bad news as far as the new toys of 2016 (and beyond) are concerned!