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March 2011 | Vol. X - No. 3
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Top-10 Toys at Toy Fair 2011

These buzzworthy toys deserve the attention


Out of the thousands of toys presented by more than 1,000 exhibitors at the American International Toy Fair in New York, several hotly anticipated toys have emerged into the media spotlight. The eclectic mix includes preschool toys, girly robots, movie tie-ins, board games, and more. You can see the full list of Top-10 toys below.



MSRP: $49.99
Age Range: 6 and up
Gender: Girls
Category: Interactive
Dolls
Robotics



Made of soft, tactile skin that enables lifelike movements, girls can poke and squeeze a Fijit Friend for a verbal reaction.  With word recognition capability, Fijit Friends can understand and respond to more than 30 verbal commands, culling from more than 150 built-in phrases and jokes. Girls only have to turn up the music dial to transform their Fijit Friend into a dancing machine. With Beat Detection functionality, Fijit Friends can recognize different types of music and perform different dance moves for each beat. Fijit Friends includes four original songs of their own. Fijit Friends come in an assortment of four that each feature distinct colors, voices, ears and personalities and feature integrated Sonic Chirp technology - special audio coding embedded into an external device or media platform (mobile applications, webisodes, television commercials and more), that when detected by Fijit, triggers various programmed reactions. Launch date: Fall 2011.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 31700      (added 2/18/2011)
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MSRP: $59.99
Age Range: 8 and up
Gender: Boys
Category: Construction
Action Figures



The Kre-o Transformers Optimus Prime set comes complete with more than 500 pieces, the largest amount featured in any of the 2011 KRE-O sets. Builders can assemble the popular Optimus Prime character in ‘vehicle’ mode as the notable semi-hauler or in ‘robot’ mode to create the leader of the Autobots. When in ‘vehicle’ mode, the truck’s removable cab converts into a mini-command station and the trailer opens to fit the two motorcycles and four unique Kreon mini figures included with the set. The trailer can also be disassembled and built into a command center playset for the Kreonmini figures. When in ‘robot’ mode, builders can blast into action with a projectile launching brick. The Kre-o Transformers Optimus Prime set includes orange traffic cones and cool decorative decals. Launch date: Fall 2011.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 31708      (added 2/18/2011)
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MSRP: $69.99
Age Range: 2 and up
Gender: Boys And Girls
Category: Interactive
Plush
Preschool



Dressed in a concert style tee, Elmo takes the stage singing and making music. Elmo comes with his very own microphone and two instruments, a tambourine and a drum set. Preschoolers can choose which instrument Elmo plays, and he recognizes which one he is given. Kids can also play along on Elmo's instruments. Elmo also interacts with other Let's Rock instruments (each sold separately); he knows when kids are playing the instruments, and plays along. The Let's Rock Elmo toy sings six songs. Requires six 'AA' batteries, included.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 31709      (added 2/18/2011)
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MSRP: $49.99
Age Range: 7 to 14
Gender: Boys
Category: Action Games
Construction
Action Figures



Kids place their characters on the spinner, arm them with 14 different weapons and use the battle cards to spin their way to victory. Watch out for the deadly flick and ball shooters. Set includes 2 minifigures with special accessories, 2 spinners, 14 weapons, 2 character cards and 8 battle cards.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 31712      (added 2/18/2011)
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MSRP: $74.99
Age Range: 4 to 9
Gender: Boys And Girls
Category: Electronics
Educational
Electronic Games



This multi-function tablet is like a starter laptop for kids. It offers interactive reading, gaming, and creative activities. It features a 5inch color touchscreen, a tilt sensor for game control, microphone, interfaces for USB, SD card and a headphone jack, and plays MP3's. VTech will offer more than 100 software titles for InnoPad including Dora the Explorer and Toy Story programs.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 31715      (added 2/18/2011)
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MSRP: $7.99
Age Range: 3 and up
Gender: Boys
Category: Electronics
Robotics
Novelties



The regular Hexbugs and the HEXBUG Nano Hive Habitat Set won the Specialty Toy of the Year Award at the 2012 American International Toy Fair. This glow in the dark version features the same motion sensors and scuttling capabilities that made the original version so popular. Glow in the dark habitats are also available. Batteries included.
— Jamie Merlavage of Tree House Toy Shop in Cumberland, Md., told TDmonthly in a Summer 2011 survey that they sell about a dozen HEXBUG Nanos each month.
— Mary Porter Green, owner of The Curiosity Zone  in Ashburn, Va., told TDmonthly in a Summer 2011 survey about best-selling toys that she sells a dozen HEXBUGS each month.
— In a March 2012 survey, 2 out of 12 retailers told TDmonthly that Hexbugs were their best selling product. Mike DiAndrea, manager of Hardware Toys in Paoli, Pa., said that they sell dozens of different styles of Hexbugs each month, and that the line has been a best seller for more than a year now.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 31716      (added 2/18/2011)
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MSRP: $49.99
Launch Date: September 2011
Gender: Boys And Girls
Category: Interactive
Plush
Preschool



Mickey is decked-out in rock star gear. Kids can listen to him play a concert, or they can learn to play along with him. He sings, dances, and performs three classic rock songs. Launch date: September 13, 2011.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 31718      (added 2/18/2011)
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MSRP: $14.99
Age Range: 1 and up
Gender: Boys And Girls
Category: Electronics
Electronic Games
Infant & Toddler



The Baby iCanPlay is an iPhone protector. Babies and toddler's can explore apps and games on their parent's iPhone without damaging it. The protector features large handles for gripping and chewing, a rubberized screen protector, mirrors on the back for added entertainment, and a special cover over the "home" button so baby can't exit out of the app. Launch date: July 2011.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 31719      (added 2/18/2011)
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MSRP: $14.99
Age Range: 5 and up
Gender: Boys And Girls
Category: Board Games
General Games
Licensed Products



One player draws a construction card and builds the structure shown. Next, an opponent loads an Angry Bird onto the launcher and catapults the bird to knock down structures and pigs. The player with the most points and knockdowns wins. Features three Angry Birds, four green pigs, one slingshot-style launcher, structure pieces and multiple mission cards. For one or more players. Launch date: May 2011.
— As of 12/17/2012 this product had 3.9 out of 5 stars from 252 reviews on Amazon.com. Pros: Great alternative to the app for parents who want to reduce kids' screen time; fun for the family to play together; helps kids develop dexterity and patience. Cons: Certain structures are too elaborate to build and don't seem to be grouped in the correct level of difficulty; kids with short attention spans may lose interest in building the structures; structures are easy to knock down, which can be frustrating for younger players.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 31720      (added 2/18/2011)
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MSRP: $14.99
Age Range: 4 and up
Gender: Boys And Girls
Category: Plush
Collectibles



This line of Plush and collectible toys corresponds to the incredibly popular MoshiMonsters.com. Many of the products can be used along with the website. Launch date: Fall 2011.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 31699      (added 2/18/2011)
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Justina HuddlestonWriter's Bio: Justina Huddleston graduated Magna Cum Laude from Emerson College with a BA in Writing, Literature, and Publishing in 2009. After graduating she was the on-site director of the Boston Children's Museum gift store for a year, selling educational, developmental, and creative activity toys that tied in with the museum's exhibits. Justina also interned at children's book publisher Candlewick Press before moving from Boston to Los Angeles, where she is now Editorial Director of TDmonthly Magazine. Read more articles by this author

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