Author: Maddie Michalik

LeapFrog Tops Children’s Tablets Sales, Unveils Learning Video Series

The LeapPad line of learning tablets from LeapFrog Enterprises Inc. was the top-selling children’s tablet brand in 2013, according to year-end sales data from The NPD Group. LeapFrog’s LeapPad family of tablets—including the LeapPad2, LeapPad2 Power, and the 7-inch touchscreen tablet LeapPad Ultra—outsold competitors’ learning tablets and Android-based kids’ tablets. LeapFrog has also partnered with Lionsgate Home Entertainment to release the first in a series of full-length learning videos featuring the next generation of popular frog characters made famous in the original Letter Factory DVD collection. LeapFrog Letter Factory Adventures: The Letter Machine Rescue Team includes problem solving and reading exercises, new songs, sing-a-long videos, and curriculum commentary for parents. The video will be available for download from the LeapFrog App Center, on DVD, and digital HD beginning March...

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Activision Publishing’s Call of Duty and Skylanders Continue to Top NPD Charts for 2013

Call of Duty and Skylanders continue to top U.S. NPD charts for last year. Call of Duty: Ghosts was the No. 1 best-selling title overall in December and No. 1 best-selling next generation console title of 2013 on both Xbox One and PlayStation 4. Call of Duty sustained its spot as the No. 1 franchise for the fifth year in a row in the U.S. in both software units and dollars. Skylanders Swap Force was the No. 2 best-selling title overall in December and No. 1 best-selling kids video game franchise in the U.S. for the second consecutive year. It was also the No. 3 video game franchise overall for the third year in the U.S., including toys and accessories. In addition, the latest two Skylanders games, Skylanders Giants and Skylanders Swap Force, both ranked in the top 5 of kids’ video games in 2013....

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Toys “R” Us Great Trade-In Event Reaches One Million Milestone

The Great Trade-In event by Toys “R” Us has resulted in the removal of more than one million pieces of used and potentially unsafe cribs, car seats, and other products since the program began in 2009. The company’s ninth “Great Trade-In” event began January 24 and run through February 17 in Babies “R” Us and Toys “R” Us stores nationwide. This year, Toys “R” Us has issued a call for action for customers to rid their homes of unsafe and old baby products and exchange them for savings on new items. During the event, stores will accept any used cribs, car seats, bassinets, strollers, travel systems, play yards, high chairs, toddler/twin beds, swings, walkers, bouncers, and entertainers in exchange for a 25 percent savings on the purchase of a new baby item in any of these categories. This program gives customers an opportunity to remove or replace old and hazardous products from their homes, garages, and attics. In addition to the event, Toys “R” Us offers supplementary resources to help parents and caregivers keep their children safe, such as the company’s dedicated safety...

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eKids Launches High Tech Stylus Creativity Crayons

eKids has launched a new line of Creativity Crayons, a new tablet and smartphone stylus designed for kids. The stylus comes with a soft rubber tip to make the mobile devices more user friendly. The Creativity Crayons came after the launch of the eKids Disney Creativity Studio app, where Disney artists provide step-by-step instructions to trace, draw, and color classic Disney characters. The Creativity Crayon takes the real life feel of a crayon and combines it with the advanced technological capabilities of the app. The styli come in a variety of characters, including Doc McStuffins, Minnie, and Mickey...

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Toys “R” Us Brings Lego Movie Anticipation to Life

Toys “R” Us has created nearly 20 movie-inspired products in anticipation for the first feature length Lego film. These new items, coming to Toys “R” Us stores nationwide and on toysrus.com/lego, will be available from January 30 through March. The products will be showcased in feature shops in Toys “R” Us stores, including play sets that replicate adventures from the movie, minifigures, and vehicles. Fans can join Emmet, an ordinary Lego minifigure, on his quest to stop an evil Lego tyrant from gluing the universe together. Toys “R” Us will also host an in-store event and offer additional gifts with Lego product purchases. On February 8, stores nationwide will host an event from noon to 2 p.m., where participants can construct and take home Emmet’s car. Customers can also try out the new The Lego Movie Nintendo 2DS video game. There will also be two raffle contests at the event and the prizes will be a $10 Toys “R” Us Gift Card and the Lord Business’ Evil Lair construction set. In addition, beginning on February 2, customers who make a $50 or more Lego construction purchase in-store will receive a complementary ticket to see The Lego Movie in theaters. The Lego Movie will be in theaters beginning February...

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Discovery Kids Partners with Cypher, Tek Nek for New Lines of Adventure Products

Discovery Kids has partnered with Cypher Entertainment and Tek Nek Toys to develop new lines of kids’ products. Cypher Entertainment will debut a line of 3D Jurassic Action toys, including the Dino Excavation Kit and Interactive Dinosaur Kit, which will use augmented reality technology to trigger an interactive dinosaur via any smartphone. The kits will come with digging tools and protective glasses to excavate fossilized bones and reconstruct a dinosaur. The line will also come with a trading card mobile game.  Tek Nek Toys will introduce a line of outdoor adventure and role-play products that will include a ride-on vehicle, bug vacuum, light-up viewing scope, big pocket vest, wrist/watch compass, periscope, magnifying glass, creature catching net, and pop-up critter hamper. The line will also come with an electronic talking puzzle map of the U.S. and a number of play sets designed to let kids step into the roles of firefighters, police officers, soldiers, and handymen. The products will be available across mass-market retailers, specialty retail stores, toy stores, consumer electronic stores, mid-tier department stores, and Internet retailers later this...

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Comic Images Launches Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Plush Line

Comic Images will launch a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles plush line in advance of the animated film in development. The products include key chains featuring Michelangelo, Donatello, Leonardo, and Raphael; Back Pals 3D backpacks featuring Leonardo and Raphael; and Golf Club Head Covers featuring Raphael and Leonardo. The products will be available in major retailers this spring. The TMNT products will be just a part of the wave of nostalgic properties made new again. This spring, Comic Images will also feature six Classic DC Comics characters key chains and Batman and Superman Back Buddies Backpacks in time for next year’s Batman-Superman...

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Sprout Orders The Good Night Show Spinoff

Little Nina will be the newest addition to Sprout’s portfolio of original series. The animated series will feature the adventures of Nina, the host of The Good Night Show, as a young Latina girl. The series is expected to debut mid-2015. The network has ordered 52 11-minute episodes of the animated show that will take viewers into the vibrant, multicultural neighborhood of Nina and her best friend Star. The show’s multilingual approach will incorporate English, Spanish, and sign language and will emphasize the value of communicating across multiple languages and appreciating other...

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“Weird Al” Yankovic Guest Stars as Cheese Sandwich on My Little Pony

“Weird Al” Yankovic will guest star as Cheese Sandwich and compete with Pinkie Pie for best party planning pony on the February 1 episode of My Little Pony Friendship is Magic. An excited Pinkie Pie plans the best party ever for Rainbow Dash, but Cheese Sandwich will plan another one that will make every pony forget about Pinkie Pie. With Pinkie Pie’s reputation challenged, she won’t go down without an ultimate goof-off showdown. The episode will air on February 1 10:30 a.m. ET/7:30 PT on the Hub Network....

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Saban Brands Offers Fan Promotion and Online Game for Digimon Fusion Series

Saban Brands will air the Digimon Fusion series on an additional TV network, offer fans online promotions, and release a new online game to engage fans with the series. The sixth season of the animated series will air January 25 on Vortexx on The CW every Saturday, following its fall 2013 debut on Nickelodeon and Nicktoons. In addition, Saban Brands has partnered with toy licensee Bandai to produce a product line including toys, trading cards, and digital apps for the series. The Digimon Fusion Collectable Card Game will be the first product available in this line. The game is now available for purchase. Saban Brands and Bandai will reveal card artwork through a “Tuesday FUSEday” online promotion running throughout January, where three cards will be unveiled on the Digimon Fusion Facebook page each week. Additional Digimon Fusion products will be available for purchase beginning mid-February at various retailers. The Digimon Fusion Shoutmon Smash online game will be available this month on digimonfusion.com, myvortexx.com, and other websites worldwide. Saban Brands will supply additional digital games and digital assets to support TV partners globally for Digimon...

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