Toy Fair lives at the intersection of serious industry and fun playthings — where suited business people and poseable action figures coexist harmoniously. This past weekend, we descended on the Javits Center to see what’s new and cool in toyland (though, admittedly, it is odd to be witnessing such fun stuff when no children are allowed on the show floor).
Ashley Carman contributed to this report
- Forget the car, Barbie now has her own drone.
- The Batman Voice-Changer literally makes anyone sound like Bruce Wayne. The mask alters users’ voices as they talk. The mask seems ideal for terrifying someone in the middle of the night.
- Fisher Price’s Think & Learn Code-a-Pillar isn’t just cute — it teaches the basic concepts of coding to kids.
- Barbie unveiled three new body types last month: tall, curvy, and petite. The original model is staying put, but the more realistic body types are a refreshing change to the iconic doll.
- Nerf has introduced an HD 720P camera that can mount on the top of its foam launchers. Those battles can now be recorded in all of their uncomfortable glory.
- It’s a big year for gaming birthdays: not only is Pokémon turning 20, Sonic the Hedgehog is turning 25.
- Who better to welcome you to Toy Fair 2016 at the Jacob Javits Center than Pokémon all-star Pikachu, who turns 20 this year.
- Mattel’s ThingMaker is a 3D printer that allows you to design and print action figures, jewelry, or toys of your own design.
- Who else is super pumped for the new Ghostbusters movie? In anticipation of the film’s release, Mattel introduced these figures of the all-woman crew last month, and they will be available later on this year.
- The Hello Barbie Dreamhouse is the internet-connected dreamhouse of the future. Kids can issue commands to the house, like one that instructs it to go into dance party mode. The house will start blasting music, turn the stairs into a slide, and flash the lights.
- Lego’s new City set is a collection of figures a kid would see walking through a park. There’s an older woman, a food vendor, a dad pushing a baby stroller, and a figure in a wheelchair. It’s part of a visible trend where toy companies increasingly are depicting the world kids live in with their products.
- This new Nerf gun shoots 68 mph — siblings beware.
- Hasbro’s new Elmo lets parents get involved in their children’s playtime. The doll can be controlled through an app. Not only can it be instructed to teach kids their ABCs, Elmo can also get involved in day-to-day skills. Essentially, parents can tell the doll to encourage their kids to get potty trained or eat their vegetables. One spokesperson described it as having a celebrity in the house.
- GoldiBlox aims to get more girls interested in STEM and, down the line, increase the number of female engineers through toys that combine storylines and construction projects.
- After Rey’s absence in the Star Wars-themed Monopoly caused an uproar, Hasbro responded and released the newest addition.
- Sphero’s Sprk lets teachers and fans connect their device to an app and share patterns for the ball to follow. They can tell it to move certain degrees in any direction and to light up. Users can then look at the code that makes it work and learn from it.
- To celebrate Pokémon’s 20th anniversary, TOMY is releasing quite a few plush toys and figures. These specific ones will be released one a month exclusively at Toys R Us.