The 2018 holiday season will see high demand for toys involving augmented reality, collectibles, slime, dinosaurs, unicorns and interactive pets, according to Nicole Jansen van Vuuren, Toys R Us marketing manager.
The toy company is seeing growing demand for toys that encourage kids to get more interactive, whether it’s taking a journey through A.R.I.A's adventures or playing with the Furreal Rock-a-Too show bird.
Parents are looking for toys which encourage their children to spend less time in front of screens, and more time playing games that get them moving.
Some of the other most sought-after gifts this festive season are expected to be the Scruff-a-Luv Fur Balls, and the Nintendo Switch Labo Kit.
There is also the return of a number of bestselling toys from last year
The toys expected to top the sales chart for Christmas 2018 are:
A.R.I.A’s Adventures is an educational interactive that uses augmented and virtual reality to educate children about animals. You can use your smart device, or a VR headset, which opens up 3 augmented realty virtual worlds: 3D colouring, interactive cards and a VR animal park.
The Nickelodeon star, singer, and YouTube personality with 8.1 million subscribers is seeing linked toy merchandise flying off the shelves. Of the ten Jojo Siwa items on the Toys R Us online store, 9 of them are sold out.
L.O.L Surprise is the top selling toy in the United States, Australia, the United Kingdom and ten other countries, according to American market research company NDP Goup. The name stands for Little Outrageous Little Surprise. The latest Under Wraps Series 4 comes in a capsule form, as opposed to the older generations which were balls, and you’ll need a secret code to open it.
Even the packaging of this toy is a game. It contains secret messages that require the included decoder spyglass to figure out. The multilayered packaging gave rise to a trend of "unboxing" videos on YouTube, where parents spend hours with their kids unpacking them.
“The enduring success of properties like L.O.L. Surprise! and Fingerlings is fuelled in part by the continued interest in social media and unboxing videos, as well as the introduction of new items to stimulate consumer demand and pique the interest of consumers,” said Frédérique Tutt, global toys industry analyst at The NPD Group.
The toys are made by MGM Entertainment, an American manufacturer founded in 1979.
Enchantimals is a toy franchise owned by Mattel, the same company that makes Barbie and Hot Wheels.
It is popular among South Africans because it encourages pretend play, and also teaches kids about friendship and the bond between children and animals, according to Mommy Blog site You, Baby and I.
Pony-lore goes all the way back to 1983 when some of today's parents were playing with their own My Little Pony. Hasbro has tried to rejuvenate the franchise four times since, and in 2010 struck gold with a multilayered animated series and toys that closely mimicked the originals.
Likewise Transformers, also made by Hasbro, have ridden the wave of a successful rejuvenation of its movies and TV series that dates back to the anime which first hit screens in 1984. The latest transforming robot is the much loved Autobot Bumble Bee , which releases just before the block buster origins movie is due on December 21.
In 2017, Hasbro reported their Transformers and My Little Pony toy empire was worth $2.7 billion (R38.5 billion) in retail sales.
Your Scruff-a-Luv arrives as a sad, matted ball of fur – but once you bathe them, dry them, brush them and love them, they reveal their true beauty. Each Scruff-a-luv species comes in a range of colours and is only revealed when washed.
With the Labo Robot kit you can transform your creation into an on-screen robot. The pack comes with cardboard box templates that fold into backpacks and handles. These sync with the Nintendo Switch. The end result is your very own building-smashing robot avatar. The alternative Labo kits are just as entertaining, allowing you to make cardboard motorbikes, pianos, and even fishing rods.
The Hatchimals are hidden in colourful, speckled eggs. Kids need to play with the eggs for about 25 minutes, to help them hatch. The furry toys are interactive and respond to noises, feeding and playtime.
Another Hasbro toy, the Rock-a-too Show Bird, is an interactive pet with more than 50 sound-and-motion combinations. It sings dances, and makes jokes.
Zoomer Enchated Unicorn moves and has a multi-coloured light-up horn to show you exactly how she is feeling. Using a magic wand allows you to unlock her secret game.
Powered by batteries, this critter hugs your finger using low-tech rubber arms. Sensors respond to sound, motion and touch. Motions include the ability to turn the head and blink its eyes.
Who doesn't enjoy enjoy playing with slime? Just add water.
Inspired by viral challenges that have gathered billions of views across the net, Don't Lose Your Cool tests the ability to remain calm under pressure. Players wear this strange Cool-O-Meter headgear that measures heart rate, and the opposing team rolls the dice that will determine how they’ll try to get a player to get flustered.
The Remote Control Smart Driver watch will listen to voice commands to activate the vehicle.
Drones will be bigger than ever, with lower price points and wider availability.
And this sweet ride, a licensed Mercedes Benz GTR 12V officially recognised by Mercedes, which can be operated by child or parents with two speeds on remote control.
Also from Business Insider South Africa