There’s no denying that Jurassic World and its Indominus Rex roared into the North American International Toy Fair in a big way this year. There are figures and role play and plush (oh, my!) and so much more inspired by the upcoming film—and they’re all really exciting. But, as a big prehistoric fanatic myself, I was excited to see that dinosaurs themselves were quite trendy this year (Finally! The world is catching on!), even if they won’t be appearing in a major motion picture later this spring.
Zoomer Dino—Jester (Spin Master)
The very popular—and TOTY Award-winning—Zoomer Dino gets a class clown makeover this year as Jester. Jester is a goofy, silly, brightly colored, and all around fun robotic pet that likes to play pranks, and—of course—make fart noises. He’s really super cute and perfect for kids looking for a prehistoric pet that isn’t quite as ferocious as the others out there on the market. And who wouldn’t want a dinosaur as a pet? Domesticated animals that aren’t currently extinct is SO ’90s.
Sand Glove Dinosaur (HABA)
Let the imaginative play begin! This flexible dinosaur skull toy is perfect for open-ended role play. It has a hinged jaw feature that allows it to double as a digging tool. Kids can take their dinos on fun excavation adventures, digging up fossils and more in the sand. Dig down into the sand, let the sand run out of the dino’s mouth, and hang on to your excavation finds!
WowWee’s MiPosaur proves that dinosaurs fit in just as well in the future as they did in a land before time. MiPosaur is a highly intelligent, robotic dino pal with an evolving intelligence and personality. It can sense its own surroundings and interact with kids in a unique and lifelike way. MiPosaur features WowWee’s GestureSense technology to control it with the swipe of the hand (the future is here, folks!). It also comes with an interactive TrackBall that features BeaconSense technology, which allows MiPosaur to chast, play with, and guard the track ball.
Super Tooth (Gamewright)
Super Tooth is the “Dino-mite” card game that’s super fun for kids ages 6 and up. Kids race to capture sets of matching dinosaurs in a ferociously fun fast-paced game. The bigger the set of dinosaurs kids trap, the bigger the reward they receive. But watch out! Like any good dino game, this one is full of obstacles such as a Velociraptor, a volcano, or (cue dramatic music) the T Rex! The player who collects the most sets wins. The artwork on this game is absolutely adorable, and with a short playtime of only 15 minutes per game, kids will surely love to get in on the prehistoric fun.
CogniToys (Elemental Path)
This little guy is like a super fun version of that annoying “Okay Google” commercial that’s always on while I’m Hulu-ing my shows. This little dinosaur pal is interactive for even the youngest dino lovers, and answers any questions that kids ask him—which also gives parents a little break from all the “But whyyyyy?”s in your life. This dino features a patent-pending technology that allows it to listen, speak, and even evolve, learn, and grow with kids. It brings a new kind of personalization and an educational play pattern to kids’ toys, especially for younger learners who may not have a plethora of toys with this sort of technology involved. The toy learns kids’ favorites colors, foods, and more, as well as their interests, and will engage in an intelligent conversation, answer questions, or even take part in storytelling. Check out their Kickstarter page to support CogniToys!
In Dino Meal, kids are challenged to rescue the eggs before the T Rex gets them. Players simply pull back the dino to set him up, and try to save the eggs from the nest, without causing the dino to attack. The dino also lets out a “Roooooooooooar!” to add a little extra oomph to this game, and a bit of a shock factor to your rescue mission (without being too terrifying, of course). Goliath also has some really cool cardboard 3-D puzzles that build up into impressive dinosaurs.
For more commentary from Ali, check back often. Views expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Toy Book as a whole. We hope that you will share your comments and feedback below. Until next time!