China Toy Fair


Dark Horse Announces Upcoming Game of Thrones Figures

tyrionDark Horse has partnered with HBO Global Licensing to provide the Game of Thrones audience with a line of collectibles from the hit series. Building on a collection of highly anticipated figures, three new Game of Thrones characters are making their worldwide debut this week: Tyrion Lannister, Ned Stark, and Khal Drogo.

After public display at New York Comic Con, all three will appear in Diamond‘s Previews catalog later this month for retailer and collector advance orders. They join the already-solicited figures of Jon Snow and Daenerys Targaryen, unveiled this summer at Comic-Con International: San Diego, in Dark Horse’s growing Game of Thrones figure line. The non-articulated figures measure from 6.25 to 8.75 inches in height and are based on the likenesses of the respective actors, all of whom have approved the sculptures. The paint application reproduces the nuances of each character’s overall appearance.

The figures will be presented in deluxe window-box packaging, further underscoring the aesthetic of the HBO series with their graphic design. These figures arrive on shelves in April.

COMMENTARY: Putting It Together

Ever since I was a kid, I have been a huge fan of puzzles. I am, by no means, a patient person, but there is something so calming and relaxing about trying to figure out how 1,000 pieces fit together to create a picture. New puzzles on the market are taking the traditional toy to a whole new level for all ages. With additions like a fourth dimension, augmented reality, or sound effects, puzzles are keeping up with the changing times and adapting for new generations. Here are some of my favorite puzzles on the market, each with its own little added twist.

4D Cityscape History Puzzle - New York City 2013The puzzles from 4D Cityscape are quite the undertaking, but they are definitely rewarding and educational at the same time. The key to 4D Cityscape puzzles are the fourth dimension: time. Puzzle builders put together a 3-D puzzle of a city, and then add the buildings, structures, and landmarks in order according to a provided timeline, learning the history of the city as well as the layout. This 4-D adventure allows you to explore the cities of the world, including New York, London, Paris, Tokyo, and more. A personal favorite of mine is the upcoming 4-D puzzle of Westeros, that was introduced by HBO at Comic-Con International: San Diego (and that I gushed about, along with other great Game of Thrones products, here). Whether you’re exploring the real world or a fictional one, 4D Cityscape puzzles are an entertaining way to travel—without all those pesky airline regulations. [Read more...]

COMMENTARY: Comic-Con Exclusives Bring the Fantasy Home

Comic-Con: A once-in-a-lifetime (annual) experience. Fans come from all over to get autographs, take photos, and experience the thrill of oversized Lego structures and men-in-costume. A place full of Hobbits, heroes, and happiness, Comic-Con allows consumers to share their love of all things fantasy. Best of all, the licensed merchandise and exclusive product offerings are abundant. These products allow consumers to get a little bit closer to the franchises they love, bridging the gap between fictional worlds and reality. From classic brands like The Power Rangers, to new favorites like Game of Thrones, the product arrays are seemingly endless, and everyone comes eager to take home their piece of Comic-Con history. Here are some of the limited edition and exclusive products we were most excited about in our office:

LEgacy Power MorpherThe Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers was by far my favorite show growing up. Though the brand has expanded to include multiple modern versions, the classic series is still my favorite. For other nostalgic Power Ranger lovers, Bandai America released the retro-style, limited-edition Legacy Power Morpher in a Green Ranger/White Ranger Edition. The 24-karat gold-plated Morpher comes with two die-cast coins. With only 1,000 available, each Morpher is individually numbered.

Spider-Man, Iron Man, the Hulk, oh my! Though Marvel superhero merchandise is never in short supply at Comic-Con, the limited-edition Marvel exclusives are always something to look forward to. In preparation for the upcoming film, The Wolverine, hitting theaters this Friday, Diamond Select, in partnership with Marvel, has unveiled the Marvel Minimates Wolverine Saga Box Set. This four-pack features 2-inch versions of Symbiote Wolverine, Spacesuit Wolverine, Ultimate Wolverine, and Logan-san in Japanese robes with a variety of interchangeable parts. [Read more...]

COMMENTARY: Winter Is Coming with New Game of Thrones Products

As an avid reader of George R.R. Martin’s book series and a regular viewer of the HBO TV series, I could not have been more excited to receive HBO’s announcements of their Game of Thrones-licensed products that were debuted at Comic-Con International in San Diego. New figures, books, puzzles, plush and more are sure to delight Game of Thrones fans and collectors. The new products feature favorite characters as well as cuddly versions of even the prickliest of Westeros’ creatures. (There are probably some spoilers from the series, so proceed with caution.)

NedStarkComicConPOP (1)Game of Thrones Comic-Con Exclusive Pop! Ned Stark Figurine: Ever find yourself watching the show and thinking, Ned Stark never would’ve let this nonsense go down? Well, the sad, defeated, yet honorable late Hand to (also the late) King Robert Baratheon is back with the Game of Thrones Comic-Con Exclusive Pop! Ned Stark Figurine, from Funko, that pays homage to the head patriarch of the Stark family that we all miss so dearly. Held together by two magnets, his bloody neck from his beheading in the penultimate episode of the first season is revealed when you remove his head. This iteration of the classic Pop! Ned  Stark Figurine is a great collectible to keep intact on your desk or in separate pieces to honor the memory of our beloved Ned. A limited quantity of this figure is on sale HBO online store. [Read more...]