China Toy Fair


Domo Ghostbusters Co-Brand Comes to Life with New Partners

Domo.GhostbustersBig Tent Entertainment has lined up more partners to represent the pop-culture mash-up of Domo and Slimer. Underground Toys, Kelly Toy, and Funko will be releasing products portraying Domo as the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man, Slimer, and a full-fledged Ghostbuster.

Underground Toys will create a line featuring plush, mugs, stickers, and more for department stores, specialty stores, stationery and gift stores, catalogs, and Internet retailers worldwide (excluding Asia). Kelly Toys will create multiple sizes of soft-sculptured toys for amusement parks and carnival and prize games in the U.S. and Canada.

Funko will be involved in a line of Domo/Ghostbusters-inspired pop vinyl figures for worldwide distribution (excluding Asia) at specialty stores, supermarkets, drug stores, catalogues, stationery and gift stores, online retailers, and mass market. [Read more...]

All Aboard for Thomas Land in North America

Thomas Pop-Up CardA full-scale Thomas & Friends attraction is set to debut in South Carver, MA next summer. This marks the largest permanent Thomas & Friends attraction in North America.

This family amusement park – which is currently in development with HIT Entertainment, a division of Fisher-Price – will be conveniently located within Edaville USA, near the greater Boston and Providence areas.

Thomas Land will cover 11.5 acres and feature 14 rides based on the Thomas & Friends Island of Sodor. The rides will feature iconic characters Thomas, Diesel, Toby, Cranky the Crane, and Harold the Helicopter.

Rovio and Hasbro to Mash Up Transformers and Angry Birds

AngryBirdsTransformersRovio Entertainment and Hasbro Inc. are bringing together two of the world’s biggest entertainment brands and their fans through Angry Birds Transformers, to be brought to life in multiple forms, including a mobile game, consumer licensed goods, and a product line from Hasbro.

Later this year, Hasbro will introduce a product line featuring Telepods technology, which will enable fans to teleport their favorite Angry Birds Transformers characters into the game and gain unique powers. The Angry Birds Transformers franchise follows successful collaborations between Hasbro and Rovio, including the Angry Birds Star Wars and Angry Birds Go! product lines, as well as the upcoming Angry Birds Stella Telepods line, which will be available in September.

This year, the companies announced an expanded licensing agreement making Hasbro the premier toy and game licensee. More Angry Birds Transformers products and content will be revealed throughout the next few weeks.

Fibre-Craft Names Dan Shure as President

Fibre-Craft Materials Corp., a manufacturer of creative activities and toys under the Creative Hands, The Springfield Collection, and Bendastix brand names, has named Daniel B. Shure as its president effective immediately. Shure will report to John Abens, who assumes the new title of chairman.

Most recently, Shure was president of BeShure LLC, a consumer products consulting company, and prior to that, he managed toy and gift companies, including Strombecker Corporation, Processed Plastic Company, and Tootsietoy Corp. He also served several terms as a director of the Toy Industry Association.

World Tech Toys Signs Deal with WWE

WorldTechToysWorld Tech Toys has signed a licensing agreement with World Wrestling Entertainment Inc. (WWE) to design and manufacture licensed R/C helicopters based on WWE superstars Hulk Hogan, John Cena, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, and others.

“The WWE deal adds more muscle to our already robust portfolio of top licensed R/C helicopters and other vehicles,” said Ben Ibarra, World Tech Toys Vice President. “We’re beyond excited to bring WWE R/C to market, and expect both R/C and WWE fans will be as well.”

World Tech Toys is behind electric-powered R/C copters featuring built-in gyroscopes that automatically stabilize the craft, so users can focus on flying or hovering. Along with its own proprietary line of R/C toys, the company offers a variety of flying and driving R/C toys based on pop culture brands.

Grumpy Cat Attends Toy Fair with Gund!

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COMMENTARY: Indoor Toys to Defeat the Colder Weather Blues

I could have sworn that yesterday was the first declared day of summer. Man, it totally flew by! Though I love autumn now, I remember hating the changing of the leaves as a kid—it meant no more pool parties or beach days, and very limited outdoor play as fall turned to winter. Fear not, kids of 2013: there are so many new toys to make indoor play equally as exciting as those water guns and slip ‘n slides. Though I can’t help you with the pool situation (even I will miss the sunshine and water combo), I can give you a list of some of the hottest remote-control and robotic toys for indoor play to get you through the colder weather.

zoomer-150x150For parents who don’t allow dogs in the house, get rid of the constant begging and pleading from your kids with Zoomer, from Spin Master. He does everything that a real dog does—except shed hair and pee in the house! He’s cute and interactive, and he listens and learns commands. The trainable robotic pet will sit, bark, run, play, and even roll over on command. He even lifts his leg when commanded to “Go pee.” Kids can teach Zoomer more than 60 tricks, and the more time spent with him, the more he does—a lesson in pet responsibility. He responds to Spanish, French, and English. He is spotted like a Dalmatian, and he answers to his name, Zoomer! It’s absolutely adorable, doesn’t need regular vet visits, and won’t beg you for food. Win-win! He loves when you pat his head or tickle his tummy; like a real dog, he can’t help but wag his tail. [Read more...]

VTech Unveils Go! Go! Smart Wheels

Smart Wheels Train-StationVTech has launched Go! Go! Smart Wheels, a new line of vehicles and play sets. Go! Go! Smart Wheels enhances a popular play pattern, vehicle play, while teaching important learning skills, encouraging interactivity, and providing an outlet for kids.

Each play set features SmartPoint locations recognized by Go! Go! Smart Wheels vehicles. As a vehicle rolls over a play set’s various SmartPoints, the car flashes and plays greetings, fun sounds, short tunes, and sing-along songs. The line features more than 20 different play sets, vehicles, and accessories, including a train station, a construction site, and an airport that can connect into an expansive toy world.

Go! Go! Smart Wheels is available at www.vtechkids.com, Amazon.com, Target.com, Toysrus.com, and Walmart.com.

Disney Planes the Video Game Launches Exclusively for Nintendo

Disney PlanesDisney Interactive has announced that Disney Planes the video game is available at retailers worldwide. The game is exclusive to all Nintendo platforms including the Wii and Wii U systems, as well as the Nintendo 3DS and Nintendo DS handheld systems.

Inspired by Disney’s animated comedy-adventure film, Disney Planes continues the storyline with Dusty, a big-hearted, speed-loving crop duster voiced by actor and comedian Dane Cook. Players can embark on races and global adventures with Dusty and other characters from the film including Ishani, voiced by Priyanka Chopra; Echo, voiced by Anthony Edwards; and Bravo, voiced by Val Kilmer.

From Propwash Junction to China, players will soar across different environments inspired by the film, playing as any one of 10 of the film’s most memorable characters. Co-op play for two players is available on any console mission. Meanwhile, handheld players will enjoy six different film-inspired skies and the option to play as any one of six characters.

Four different modes of gameplay include Air Rallies, Story, Free Flight, and Balloon Popping. Free Flight mode is exclusive to console play, while the handheld has an exclusive Challenge mode.

Hasbro Releases Kre-O Star Trek Line, Stop Motion Digital Short

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Hasbro, Inc.‘s new Kre-O Star Trek line is now available at retail locations. Hasbro also released a stop motion animated short featuring Kre-O building sets and Kreon figures based on the iconic Star Trek film franchise. Fans can watch the video, with a new stand-alone Star Trek storyline, now on the official Kre-O YouTube channel. The digital short will make its television broadcast premiere May 13 at 7:30 p.m. EST on Cartoon Network.

The Kre-O Star Trek stop motion digital short animation was produced through film director J.J. Abrams’ production company, Bad Robot, with special effects for the piece created by Kelvin Optical, one of the visual effects teams also working on the soon-to-be released Star Trek Into Darkness from Paramount Pictures.

The Kre-O Star Trek line, under license from CBS Consumer Products, is based on the upcoming film Star Trek Into Darkness, in theaters on May 17, and features a variety of intergalactic space vehicles from the movie. Also featured in the line are 18 collectible Kreon figures based on iconic Star Trek characters, to be released throughout this year. The new Kre-O Star Trek line marks the unveiling of Lighttech, a light-up feature within every Kre-O Star Trek building set that allows kids and fans to bring the fantasy world of Star Trek to the next level.

The flagship item of the line, the Kre-O Star Trek U.S.S. Enterprise building set allows kids and fans the chance to build an 18-inch long star ship toy with light-up warp engines, a bridge play area and five Kreon Star Trek characters, including favorites such as Captain Kirk and Spock. A total of 11 individual Kre-O Star Trek building sets will be available this year ranging in size from 32 to 432 pieces, including four micro-build ships and one set available exclusively at Toys “R” Us.

The full line of Kre-O Star Trek building sets and Kreon figures available now from Hasbro include the following: U.S.S. Enterprise Building Set, Klingon Bird-of-Prey Building Set, Spock’s Volcano Mission Building Set, Transporter Trouble Building Set, Micro-Build Ships Assortment, Space Dive Building Set, and Kreon Figure Packs.