Roominate is a line of wired building systems designed for young girls to promote creativity while designing their own structures with circuits, modular pieces, and universal joints.
This article was originally published in the July/August 2014 issue of The Toy Book. To read the entire digital issue, click here.
The construction play pattern has always allowed kids to create buildable worlds and adventures straight from their imaginations. But with a recent surge of licensed toys entering the category, kids are able to build more and more familiar worlds based on their favorite existing properties. According to The NPD Group, dollar sales of licensed building sets grew by 6 percent from 2011 to 2013. As the world becomes more multi-media driven, licensed properties are deeply integrated into kids’ daily lives. Established building toy companies, as well as those looking to get their feet wet in the category, are jumping on the bandwagon with characters and environments that are already a staple among kids—and even collectors. [Read more...]
McFarlane Toys is unveiling new brick building toys based on AMC’s The Walking Dead. These building sets and figures will be available this fall at Toys “R” Us stores nationwide and online at toysrus.com.
The initial McFarlane Toys’ The Walking Dead brick building line will feature realistic and detailed sculpts, light-up and shaped features, iconic environments, and fan-favorite characters and walkers, allowing collectors and fans to recreate their favorite scenes.
The building sets include Daryl Dixon with Chopper, The Governor’s Room, and Prison Tower with Gate. Blind bag figures include Daryl Dixon, Michonne, The Governor, Carl Grimes, Riot Gear Walker, Michonne’s Pet Walker, and Herd Walkers.
OYO Sports, a manufacturer of licensed mini-figure building toys that look like popular professional athletes, is building a vertically integrated e-commerce business with real-time U.S.-based manufacturing. Seed investors include Boston Seed Capital and Atlas Venture.
OYO Sports features players from multiple fan-favorite sports, including football, baseball, and hockey. The company currently features over 2,000 unique athletes.
The new business venture is aimed to extend beyond toys, and bring out the kid in all sports fans.
Funnybone Toys has a new line of products for the specialty toy and games market that combines form, function, and minimalist design. Products in the line include Disruptus, which uses disruptive thinking to help users innovate by encouraging different ideas and approaches. Another product, Arazzles, lets players explore geometrical configurations. Each set features cards with one of five different patterns of slots that allow abstract building and design opportunities.
Funnybone’s Array is a colorful take on dominoes that utilizes multi-color cards. Special slice and splice rules allow players to use more cards in each turn. Spectrix is a fast-paced, colorful take on the classic game Rummy, in which the objective is to get rid of all the cards in one’s hand. Lastly, Cubu plays on visual illusions to confuse players as they try to follow number and color sequences. The game forces players to use both sides of their brain at the same time.
K’NEX Brands, in partnership with Twentieth Century Fox Consumer Products, has released its first line of officially licensed building toys inspired by the animated comedy series Family Guy. The new product line combines the K’NEX building system with iconic characters and elements from the TV show, and is suitable for kids ages 8 and up.
Buildable Family Guy figure two-packs come in Brian & Meg, Stewie & Lois, and Peter & Chris Buildable Figures. Family Guy: Stewie and Time Machine Building Set includes a buildable Stewie figure dressed in his pajamas, as well as enough K’NEX rods, connectors, and bricks to build his time machine complete with working door. Family Guy: Peter and Station Wagon Building Set includes a buildable Peter figure dressed in his work suit, and enough K’NEX pieces to build a moving replica of the family’s red station wagon, which has a work seat for Peter.
Mega Brands Inc. and Activision Publishing Inc. have introduced a new premium line of Mega Bloks Collector Construction Sets, based on the Call of Duty franchise. The new line brings a level of sophistication and detail never before seen in the highly collectible construction category.
Call of Duty Collector Construction Sets are part of a multi-year, global license with Activision that expands upon the two companies’ development of innovative, creative, and entertaining construction collectibles. The sets offer a range that includes buildable vehicles, themed locations, and collectible micro action figures. The action figures feature a level of articulation that includes unique joint design and poseability.