September 22, 2018

TDmonthly Magazine

March 2007 | Vol. VI - No. 3

Mass Market: Combo Games

Latest Games Capitalize on Multiple Trends

By Bridget White
March 2007

“Even board games are starting to have a high-tech or electronic component.” Ellen Davis, NRF
The modern idea of a game can include anything from traditional board games to cutting-edge video games to interactive DVD games — but some of the latest combine all of these elements, utilizing both the latest technology and a little nostalgia.

High-Tech Hype

According to Ellen Davis, senior director of strategic communications with the National Retail Federation (NRF), Christmas 2006 was dominated by high-tech games. Research by the NRF showed that both boys and girls listed the latest gaming devices — specifically Playstation 3, Nintendo DS and XBOX 360 — in their top-10 toy choices.

“But it’s more than just video games,” Davis explained to TDmonthly Magazine. “Even board games are starting to have a high-tech or electronic component.”

Two examples of low-tech gone high are the Sorry! electronic card game and interactive UNO.

Standards That Sell

In contrast, there’s also a resurgence of decades-old board games such as Monopoly and The Game of Life. Last year, Hasbro released a 70th Anniversary Edition of Monopoly, and Winning Moves Games introduced Monopoly 1935 First Deluxe Edition, a replica of the original board game.

“Old board games have been selling really well, especially the standards that we all grew up with,” said Stacy Black, toy department manager at Target’s Chicago South Loop location. “We ran out during Christmas.”

A License to Play

For games that want to keep the electronics out of the box, updating can simply mean licensing, Joel Wildman, a toy-industry sourcing specialist with The Rep Org Company, reported to TDmonthly. “More and more games are tied to TV or movies like American Idol. ... There has been a heavy influence from buyers that they want licensed products instead of generic games.”

Monopoly alone has more than a dozen licensed variations, including SpongeBob SquarePants and Disney editions.

What’s In the Middle

With the mass market focusing its game offerings on the ends of the spectrum — retro and high-tech — there’s plenty of space in between for specialty retailers to identify and capitalize on unique games.

Here are some of the most popular games for children and adults:

Sorry! Card Revenge Game by HASBRO INC.

Sorry! Card Revenge Game by HASBRO INC.A new twist on the family favorite, Sorry! Card Revenge Game is a fast-paced interactive electronic card game. The giant talking pawn comes to life and directs game play, but instead of moving game pieces around a board, players try to match colors or build numeric sequences from their hand to play as many cards as possible. The player who plays his or her entire hand and moves all four pawns home wins. It is suitable for two to four players. 2/8/2007 (MSRP: $19.99; Age: 6 and Up)

Deal or No Deal by iTOYS INC.

Deal or No Deal by iTOYS INC.Players can experience the fun and excitement of the hit TV game show at home. Deal or No Deal electronic tabletop game lets players match wits against the electronic banker and up to three other players in a head to head battle for the highest dollar amount. Featuring scrolling messages on an LCD screen and a rotating turntable, this version secretly keeps track of each player’s decisions until the final round when all players reach the end of the game. It received the Toy of the Year award from Family Fun Magazine. Launch date: July 2006. 2/9/2006 (MSRP: $29.99; Age: 10 and Up)

Trivial Pursuit Totally 80s Edition by HASBRO INC.

Trivial Pursuit Totally 80s Edition by HASBRO INC.Now players can test their knowledge of the ‘80s — an outrageous decade filled with big events, bigger fads and over-the-top personalities. Trivial Pursuit Totally 80s takes players back to that decade with 2,400 all-new questions in categories such as headlines, television, movies, sports and leisure, and wild card. It includes four pawns decorated to symbolize the decade, and accommodates two to four players. 2/8/2007 (MSRP: $29.99)


Pipeline Game by UNIVERSITY GAMESChildren can tap into hours of constructive fun with this 3D strategy game. Players try to be the first to build a pipeline that crosses the water to the opposite side of the board. They roll the die to find out which piece to use to construct a pipeline, or play a “blocker cap” that will seal off a pipeline. The game includes a game board, 80 pipe pieces (20 of each color) and a die. It accommodates two to four players. 2/8/2007 (MSRP: $21.98; Age: 6 and Up)

Win, Lose or Draw by MOBY GAMES

Win, Lose or Draw by MOBY GAMESThis video drawing game brings the classic TV drawing game home. A word or phrase is displayed on the drawing pad, and players must draw a picture that will help teammates guess the word before time runs out. Each team sets its own difficulty level. Consoles connect quickly to the TV, and drawings appear in real time on the TV screen. It contains 1,500 drawing clues in three difficulty levels, and is suitable for an unlimited number of players. 2/8/2007 (MSRP: $19.83; Age: 8 and Up)


PlayStation 3 by SONY ELECTRONICSPlayStation 3 is a seventh-generation video game console. The console has a powerful 3.2 GHz Cell Broadband Engine with 1 PPE and 7 SPEs. Users can buy games such as the popular "Resistance: Fall of Man" and can also use the PlayStation Network to play interactive games with others. The console supports BD-ROM, DVD-ROM, CD-ROM and Super Audio CD technology. Most PlayStation and PlayStation 2 games also can be played on this new console. Launch Date: November 17, 2006. 12/28/2006 (MSRP: $499.00; Age: 6 and Up)

American Idol All Star Challenge DVD Game by SCREENLIFE

American Idol All Star Challenge DVD Game by SCREENLIFEExperience all of the excitement and thrill of one of America's most popular television shows, "American Idol." The American Idol - All Star Challenge DVD Game will transform your living room into a TV talent showdown! With this game board and DVD packed with clips and songs from the show, players will journey to auditions, Hollywood and, if they have what it takes, the Finals round where they have a shot at being America's next hot superstar. In this game that features real television clips from the first five seasons of American Idol, and hosted by Ryan Seacrest, players will experience the unique personalities of Paula, Simon and Randy and see their favorite Idols. Players can also find out how much they know about the show with questions and performance challenges. 5/31/2006 (MSRP: $34.99; Age: 9 and Up)


Nintendo DS by NINTENDO OF AMERICA INC. Using dual screen technology, this new handheld video game console comes with PictoChat software allowing users to draw, write and send messages wirelessly to each other within a few miles. The touch screen also includes a planner feature. The system plays old and new games, which sell on average for $40 a piece, complementing the $150 console. For roughly $200, the system comes with a case, car charger and a game along with the system itself. - Norma Yacoub. 4/15/2005

Xbox 360 by MICROSOFT

Xbox 360 by MICROSOFTXbox 360 delivers high definition gaming and entertainment experiences for the whole family, with games such as the classic "Pac-Man" and the new generation blockbuster "Halo 2."  With a 3.2 GHz PPC Tri-Core Xenon CPU and 500 MHz ATI Xenos GPU, the Xbox 360 provides great graphics and audio for realistic games. Xbox 360 also features high definition downloads on Xbox LIVE, access to digital music and pictures stored on a PC and voice and video chat capability via the Vision camera.  Xbox 360 is available in three models: Xbox 360 Core, Xbox 360 (with a 20 GB hard drive) and the new Xbox 360 Elite (with a 120 GB hard drive and black finish). Launch Date: November 22, 2005. 12/28/2006 (Age: 6 and Up)


UNO Spin by MATTEL INC.This spin-off of the original UNO game adds a little more fun to the goal of trying to discard all the cards. The spinning board may direct players to trade hands, show cards to opponents, or play a variation of war.  It received the 2007 Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Platinum Award. 12/7/2006 (MSRP: $15.99; Age: 7 and Up)

The Game Chamberô by DAZE PRODUCTS INC.

The Game Chamberô by DAZE PRODUCTS INC.The Game Chamber is an innovative locking storage unit for games, movies or videos. These models, for Nintendo Gameboy Advance, Gameboy Advance SP, Nintendo DS, and DS Lite come in blue, pink and silver shades.
— The product “prevents kids from losing or damaging their games, because they have to put the game cartridge or CD/DVD they are playing with away if they want to play with another,” Sherri Sklar, VP of sales and marketing at Daze Products, told TDmonthly. “There is currently nothing else out there in the market that singlehandedly organizes the games, protects [them] from being lost or damaged, and teaches children personal responsibility.” For price, contact Daze. Launch date: February 11, 2007. (Watch the The Game Chamber™ Video Watch Video) 1/12/2007 (MSRP: $14.95; Age: 4 to 15)

1 vs 100 by PRESSMAN TOY CORP.

1 vs 100 by PRESSMAN TOY CORP.This exciting DVD game for two to four players is based on the popular NBC game show “1 vs. 100,” in which one player tries to outlast 100 competitors by answering a variety of trivia questions. In the home version, one player answers trivia questions while the others decide how their 100 "people" will answer. The more one player outwits the other players, the more money he earns. Launch date: April 2007. 2/23/2007 (MSRP: $20.00; Age: 12 and Up)

Scene It? Movie 2nd Edition Deluxe DVD Game by SCREENLIFE

Scene It? Movie 2nd Edition Deluxe DVD Game by SCREENLIFEThe second edition of this DVD game is loaded with all-new movie clips, trivia questions and puzzlers from Hollywood’s finest films, including “Walk the Line,” “Dodgeball” and “The Devil Wears Prada.” The game tests players’ powers of observation and puzzle-solving skills through a variety of on-screen challenges. According to Nancy Jenkins, director of public relations at Screenlife, the Scene It? game “started the DVD game craze and revolutionized the board game industry.” Launch date: July 2007.  (Watch the Scene It? Movie 2nd Edition Deluxe DVD Game Video Watch Video) 2/19/2007 (MSRP: $49.95; Age: 13 and Up)

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