Sweet Suite 2016

Barbie Launches #YouCanBeAnything Campaign in Canada

BarbieYouCanBeAnythingBarbie will celebrate Take Our Daughters and Sons to Work Day on April 28 with a #YouCanBeAnything campaign in Canada. From April 28 to May 2, Barbie encourages families across Canada to share photos on Facebook and Twitter of kids living out their career ambitions using the hashtag #YouCanBeAnything. They can also upload their photo to the You Can Be Anything event page, where four winners will be selected to live out their dream career for a day in real life.

Barbie recently surprised four aspiring veterinarians with a trip to the Toronto Zoo for a day to work alongside animal technicians to care for baby animals, examine penguins, and experience a day in the life of a trained animal doctor.

TIA Leads Advocacy Day for TSCA Reform Legislation

Toy Industry Association (TIA) representatives and several TIA members met with members of federal congressional offices and the Environmental Protection Agency to discuss the passage of Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) reform legislation.

TIA led the TSCA Advocacy Day to encourage key policymakers to collaborate, finalize legislation, and propose a joint bill to President Obama, which he can sign into a federal law before he leaves office next year.

State chemical regulatory programs have resulted in complex and costly compliance procedures that often do not increase the safety of children’s products. Both bills include preemption language that would prevent states from banning chemicals in the future.

Hasbro Expands with New Space in Media Studios North

Hasbro LogoHasbro Inc. announced the company’s plans to relocate and expand its West Coast presence. The company will move from its 45,000-square-foot North Hollywood Way office in Burbank, CA, to an  80,000-square-foot office space on 3333 West Empire Ave. in Burbank’s Media Studios North office park.

Media Studios North is a 1.2 million-square-foot office park owned by Shorenstein Properties LLC and The Worthe Real Estate Group, Inc. Home to companies like Technicolor and Kaiser Permanente, the property is adjacent to the Bob Hope Airport, and offers quick access to Downtown Los Angeles.

Employees will have access to a range of amenities, including two full-service commissaries, a first-class health club, and outdoor activities such as basketball, volleyball, tennis, and a jogging track. The building is LEED Gold certified, and features enough space for over 300 employees. Hasbro intends for the move to happen in the fourth quarter of this year.

Nintendo, Sonic Partner for Kids Meal Toys

Nintento Paper Jam Sonic ImageSonic and Nintendo have partnered to bring Mario and Luigi to kids’ meals across the country. Between April 19 and June 30, Sonic Drive-Ins are offering customers a toy based on the Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam game with each purchase of a Wacky Pack kids meal. [Read more...]

The NPD Group Says Video Game Sales are Steady

Total video game sales from March 2015 to March 2016 stayed about the same, according to The NPD Group. In addition, total software sales went up by seven percent, video game hardware sales went down by nineteen percent, and video games software and video games accessories sales increased by eight and nine percent.

The top 10 games for 2016 include: Tom Clancy’s The Division, Far Cry: Primal, The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess HD, Grand Theft Auto V, UFC 2, MLB 16: The Show, Pokken Tournament, NBA 2K16, Call of Duty: Black Ops III, and Minecraft.

Chris Cocks Joins Hasbro as Wizards of the Coast President

Chris Cocks 1 2013Chris Cocks will replace Greg Leeds as president of Wizards of the Coast, the game and entertainment subsidiary of Hasbro. Leeds has resigned from the position, and served in his position since 2008, and started at Hasbro in 2001.

Cocks most recently served as vice president, OEM technical sales at Microsoft Corporation, where he led a global sales and technical engagement team. Prior to his eight years at Microsoft, Cocks served as vice president of educational games at LeapFrog, where he led a cross-discipline team to drive hardware planning, software design and development, and marketing and channel management.

Drones Rulemaking Committee Makes Recommendations to FAA

The Micro Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) Rulemaking Committee submitted recommendations to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to establish framework for classifying and flying drones above people, according to the Toy Industry Association. The recommendations will be used as a basis for an FAA-proposed rule that will be issued this year. [Read more...]

Massachusetts 5th Grader Awarded ‘Top Banana’ At Inaugural Bananagrams Challenge

BananagramsTopBananaEleven-year-old Keely Cahoon, from Ralph D. Butler Elementary School in Avon, Mass. defeated 10,000 other 4th through 6th graders in New England to win the first-ever U.S. Bananagrams Challenge. The fifth grader was crowned ‘Top Banana’ after triumphing over 11 other kids at the live Grand Final of the word game tournament, held on April 9 at the Omni Providence Hotel in Providence, RI, home state of Bananagrams. [Read more...]

The NPD Group Reports on Consumer Viewing Habits of eSports, Streaming Gameplay

According to eSports and Streaming Gameplay, the latest report from The NPD Group, 44 percent of current gamers have watched either formal eSports competitions or informal video streaming of gameplay in the past six months. [Read more...]

Hasbro, Indiegogo Launch Second Crowdfunding Challenge

unnamed-1The Hasbro Gaming Lab Spring 2016 Next Great Game Challenge is now open to game designers in the U.S., the UK, Canada, France, and Germany. Following its successful debut in the U.S. last year, Hasbro and Indiegogo’s challenge provides a platform for independent game designers to get visibility for their ideas and allows Hasbro to celebrate the growing gaming community and discover and develop new games. [Read more...]