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October 19, 2017

TDmonthly Magazine

December 2012 | Vol. XI - No. 12


20 Top-Selling Mass-Market Toys

By TDmonthly Staff
December 2012

You may sell specialty, but it's important to watch the mass-market to keep abreast of new trends and get tipped off early if your own best-sellers are "crossing over", like the popular Spot It!. TDmonthly Magazine will be updating our list of mass-market top-sellers weekly to make this job easier for you.

HedBanz Game by SPIN MASTER TOYS

HedBanz Game by SPIN MASTER TOYSSpice up family game night with the Hedbanz Board Game, a fun, fast-paced, and simple question game that everyone aged 6 and up can enjoy. In a group of two to six players, players draw an identity card for an animal, food, or common object but with one catch--everyone else will see the card, displayed by the headband on each player's forehead. The goal is for each player to deduce who or what they are by asking the other players questions before the clock runs out.
— As of 11/30/2012 this product had 4.5 out of 5 stars from 208 reviews on Amazon.com. 11/30/2012 (MSRP: $18.00; Age: 8 to 12)


The Settlers of Catan® (4th Edition) by MAYFAIR GAMES INC.

The Settlers of Catan® (4th Edition) by MAYFAIR GAMES INC.In this game designed by Klaus Teber, three to four players who are immigrants to Catan must develop their colony on the island by establishing roads, villages and settlements and making strategic trades of bricks and lumber, livestock or other commodities to obtain necessary resources. Play takes about 60 to 90 minutes. The first player to 10 points wins. "The new edition was released three years ago and has sold more copies in those three years than the first, second or third editions combined," Bob Carty, Sales & Marketing Director, Mayfair Games, told TDmonthly in early 2010.
— In August 2010, five percent of 43 retailers surveyed named The Settlers of Catan an overall top seller. The same month, Steven Levy, owner of Toy City in Keene, New Hampshire, told TDmonthly his store sells approximately three Settlers of Catan games per week.
— “It's real easy to teach, and then you just develop strategies from there," Mike Snyder, owner and manager of Cville's Hobbies, Games and Toys in Charlottesville, Va., told TDmonthly in a February 2012 survey about best selling games. Cville's sells 16-20 copies of the game each month.
— As of 12/17/2012 this product had 4.7 out of 5 stars from 632 reviews on Amazon.com. 3/3/2010 (MSRP: $42.00; Age: 10 and Up)


Rory's Story Cubes by GAMEWRIGHT

RoryThis pocket-sized story generator is designed to provide hours of imaginative play for all ages. With Rory's Story Cubes®, anyone can become a great storyteller and there are no wrong answers. Players simply roll the cubes and let the pictures spark the imagination. "Rory's Story Cubes is unique because of its simplicity, small packaging, low price point and endless story possibilities. It's a great learning and writing tool that can be played with one person or a large group as a party game," Emily Nichols, marketing coordinator for Gamewright, told TDmonthly. Launch date: March 2010.
Awards: 2009 Dr. Toy’s 10 Best Games of the Year; 2010 Major Fun Award; 2010 Parents’ Choice Gold Award, Creative Child Magazine Seal of Excellence Award, iParenting Media Award, Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Gold Award.
— As of 12/17/2012 this product had 4.6 out of 5 stars from 306 reviews on Amazon.com. Pros: Helps develop story telling ability; promotes cooperative play; creative; affordable. Cons: One reviewer said they were bored with it after playing a few times, but that it is very affordable.
— Stacy Kalisz of The Old Schoolhouse Magazine “absolutely loved” using the Story Cubes with her family as they came up with a variety of games. One of their favorite play variations “is to tell a group story, with each person using one die on his or her turn.”
 12/28/2009 (MSRP: $7.99; Age: 8 and Up)


Angry Birds Knock on Wood Board Game by MATTEL INC.

Angry Birds Knock on Wood Board Game by MATTEL INC.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. 2/18/2011 (MSRP: $14.99; Age: 5 and Up)


Cards Against Humanity by CARDS AGAINST HUMANITY INC

Cards Against Humanity by CARDS AGAINST HUMANITY INCCards Against Humanity is a "party game for horrible people." The game is simple. Each round, one player asks a question from a Black Card, and everyone else answers with their funniest White Card. Includes 550 cards (460 White cards and 90 Black cards); over 13 duodecillion possible rounds (10^40) with 6 players; professionally printed on premium playing cards; includes game rules and alternate rules; shrink-wrapped in a custom box.
— As of 12/17/2012 this product had 4.9 out of 5 stars from 865 reviews on Amazon.com. Pros: Very interactive; humorous; great party game. Cons: One reviewer said some of the cards were "a bit too much;" some references might not be known by everyone. 6/16/2011 (MSRP: $25.00; )


Qwirkle by MINDWARE

Qwirkle by MINDWARERequiring no reading from its players, Qwirkle is a simple-to-learn but stimulating game based around matching the attributes of the game play tiles. Players build rows and columns by placing tiles adjacent to tiles they share an attribute with (shape or color), and score bonus points if they can think ahead and put a tile down touching multiple other tiles. While the game is easy to understand, a good eye and quick thinking make Qwirkle challenging enough for a wide range of ages to play together.
Awards: 2011 Speiele des Jahres (German game of the year).
― “We sell a lot of Qwirkle,” Sue Banducci said of popular games in her Danville, Calif., store, Games Unlimited. “Qwirkle was best-selling over Christmas,” said Shirley Reilly, owner of Let's Play in Hillsboro, Ore., in January 2009.
― When asked about his top-selling games in early 2009, Tye Steinbach of Thinker Toys in Portland, Ore. told TDmonthly, “It was probably Qwirkle. We're not huge gamers in our family, but it's really fun.”
— Four of 44 specialty retailers named Qwirkle as a best seller in late fall 2009. Ages & Stages Toy Box in Golden, Colo., sells about 10 Qwirkle games per month, Manager Holly Anvers told TDmonthly.
— As of 12/17/2012 this product had 4.8 out of 5 stars from 483 reviews on Amazon.com and was No. 6 on the top 100 bestselling toys and games. Pros: Exciting; intellectually stimulating, easy to learn. Cons: Some said it took too long to play; only had 3 reviews less than 3 stars, however. (Watch the Qwirkle Video Watch Video) 2/9/2009 (MSRP: $24.95; Age: 6 and Up)


Syma - 3 Channel Electric Helicopter RTF w/ Auto Stabilizing Gyro + Metal Frames + Cool Strobing Head Lights by TOY WONDERS INC.

Syma - 3 Channel Electric Helicopter RTF w/ Auto Stabilizing Gyro + Metal Frames + Cool Strobing Head Lights by TOY WONDERS INC.S032 Syma - 3 Channel Electric Helicopter RTF w/ Auto Stabilizing Gyro + Metal Frames + Cool Strobing Head Lights. 11.5" long helicopter comes with battery, charger and transmitter. The Syma S032 RC helicopter can go forward, backward, left, and right. This S032 even equipped with bright strobing LED head lights, so you can enjoy flying in the dark. The unique co-axial rotors counter-rotate for unprecedented stability. Light and safe, this helicopter will transform any indoor environment into a cool chopper fly zone. Get about 12 minutes flight time per charge. S032 is in RED & WHITE 2-tone colors.
— As of 12/17/2012 this product had 4.1 out of 5 stars from 899 reviews on Amazon.com. 12/15/2010 (MSRP: $70; Age: 8 and Up)


LEGO Ultimate Building Set by LEGO

LEGO Ultimate Building Set by LEGOThis Lego starter kit lets younger children build a house, car, dog, helicopter and more. The set features 405 pieces stored in a durable plastic box with a see-through top. Included are minifigure, a building plate and a wide mix of standard bricks in various colors, as well as house and wheel elements.
— As of 12/17/2012 this product had 4.6 out of 5 stars from 293 reviews on Amazon.com and was No. 19 on the top 100 bestselling toys and games. Pros: 405 pieces and one figurine included; packaged in durable storage container. Cons: Younger children may need help with construction; pieces do not fill up bucket all the way. 7/26/2010 (MSRP: $29.99; Age: 4 and Up)


Angry Birds Plush 5-Inch Yellow Bird with Sound by COMMONWEALTH TOY & NOVELTY CO

Angry Birds Plush 5-Inch Yellow Bird with Sound by COMMONWEALTH TOY & NOVELTY COAngry Birds is the #1 app worldwide and has been downloaded over 100 million times. Angry Birds plush bring the characters kids love onscreen into their arms. Incredibly soft and with the authentic sounds from the game, a must for every Angry Birds fan. Officially licensed product. Squeeze the top to hear authentic sounds from the game. Incredibly soft plush.
— As of 12/17/2012 this product had 4.4 out of 5 stars from 41 reviews on Amazon.com. 12/17/2012 (MSRP: $11.99; Age: 1 and Up)


SC-100 Snap Circuits Jr. by ELENCO

SC-100 Snap Circuits Jr. by ELENCOKevin Tjaden, owner of Scientific Wizardry in Boise, Idaho, had this to say: “It's an electronic kit — kind of like the ones we had when we were kids. … It's really taken off. It also targets the right age range: 8-14, which allows for increased market share. It's become easier to use and easier to understand. As parents, everyone remembers it, but certain parts didn't work that well, certain springs would fall apart. … By solving those problems, people say, "This is like what I had as a kid, but better!”
— As of 12/17/2012 this product had 4.9 out of 5 stars from 477 reviews on Amazon.com and was No. 16 on the top 100 bestselling toys and games. PROS:  Fun and educational, lots of possible circuits.  CONS:  Kit doesn't always explain how the circuits work.
— In a late Summer 2012 survey, four out of 12 retailers told TDmonthly that Snap Circuits were one of their best selling Science & Nature toys.
. (Watch the SC-100 Snap Circuits Jr. Video Watch Video) 9/6/2012 (MSRP: $29.95; Age: 8 and Up)


Ultra Stomp Rocket by D & L COMPANY

Ultra Stomp Rocket by D & L COMPANYStomp on the launch pad and a blast of air propels the Ultra Stomp Rocket over 200' in the air. The kit contains four rockets with the OG-1 Nosecone. “We are the original creator. Stomp Rockets started the "stompin' revolution," Cynthia Peeks of D&L Co. told TDmonthly, stressing that Stomp Rockets are known for their name, quality and safety.
Awards: TDmonthly Top Seller 2008
; iParenting Media, iParenting Hot; Dr. Toy Best Children´s Vacation Toy.
— Retailers surveyed by TDmonthly have been naming Ultra Stomp Rocket as a best-seller since 2006.
— Four of 45 retailers who spoke to TDmonthly in summer 2007 said the Stomp Rocket's success makes it a choice gift, reporting unit sales figures from four to dozens a month. Nine percent of 66 retailers named the Stomp Rocket as a best-selling gift for boys in July 2008. "We sell about 75 a month," Marilyn Walker, owner of Play Fair Toys in Boulder, Colo., told TDmonthly in early 2009. Thirteen percent of 47 retailers told TDmonthly in June 2009 that Stomp Rockets are a best seller for boys. “It's probably been the dang Stomp Rocket for about 15 years now. They just fly out,” Tye Steinbach, owner of Thinker Toys in Portland, Ore., said when asked about his most popular outdoor toy. Nine of 37 retailers named Stomp Rockets as a best-selling outdoor item in spring 2010.
— Despite multiple complaints about its durability, the Ultra Stomp Rocket received an average of 4.5 stars among 217 Amazon.com customers for being fun for all ages and pleasantly surprising when it comes to the distance the rockets can be launched. The toy is best used in open areas. Rockets are easy to lose and break, but refills are easy and cheap to find! (12.17.2012)
 12/17/2012 (MSRP: $15.00; Age: 8 and Up)


Vtech Sit-to-Stand Learning Walker by VTECH

Vtech Sit-to-Stand Learning Walker by VTECHThis product is for children ages six months and up. With a barnyard of friends to cheer baby on, little ones will love learning to walk with the Sit-to-Stand Walker. Start out with the easy-to-remove play panel for floor play or fun on the run. Then step it up with the fun-to-maneuver walker. There are three spinning flowers, five piano keys, colorful rollers, three light-up shape sorters and a telephone handset. The Sit-to-Stand Learning Walker keeps baby on track by teaching shapes, colors, animals, music and more. Requires 3 "AA" batteries, included. Measures 5.8"L x 20.9"W x 15"D.
As of 12/17/2012 this product had 4.3 out of stars from 472 reviews on Amazon.com. Cons: Wheels don't have enough traction; too "loud and obnoxious;" too expensive. 5/6/2011 (MSRP: $37.99; Age: 1 and Up)


Angry Birds Plush 5-Inch Black Bird with Sound by COMMONWEALTH TOY & NOVELTY CO

Angry Birds Plush 5-Inch Black Bird with Sound by COMMONWEALTH TOY & NOVELTY COAngry Birds is the #1 app worldwide and has been downloaded over 100 million times. Angry Birds plush bring the characters kids love onscreen into their arms. Incredibly soft and with the authentic sounds from the game, a must for every Angry Birds fan. Officially licensed product. Squeeze the top to hear authentic sounds from the game. Incredibly soft plush.
— As of 12/17/2012 this product had 4.3 out of 5 stars from 44 reviews on Amazon.com. 12/17/2012 (MSRP: $11.99; Age: 1 and Up)


Perplexus Original by PATCH PRODUCTS INC.

Perplexus Original by PATCH PRODUCTS INC.The first member of the Perplexus family, this see-through sphere houses a 3-D labyrinth game with 100 barriers, turns, twists and cliffhangers that serve as obstacles to getting a small steel ball to the end. Invented in 1970 by Michael McGinnis, a design teacher, Perplexus helps develop motor and dexterity skills, along with hand-eye coordination.
― As of 12/17/2012 this product had 4.4 out of 5 stars from 393 reviews on Amazon.com and was No. 12 on the top 100 bestselling toys and games.
— At Izilla Toys in Seattle, "Perplexus is selling really, really well for us," Co-owner Jude Larene told TDmonthly in late fall 2009.
— In summer 2010 this game was a top-10 best seller at Dancing Bear Toys in Asheville and Hendersonville, N.C..
Awards: 2012 Parents’ Choice Awards - Silver, 2011 Time Magazine – 15 Smartest Toys for Young Geniuses, 2011 Parent Tested Parent Approved – Seal of Approval, 2011 Grand Prix Kidexpo – Elu par les Parents (Parents’Choice), 2011 Children of Museum of Indianapolis – Top 10 Toys of 2011, 2011 Canadian Toy Testing Council – Children’s Choice, 2011 Babble List – Best Kids Toys, 2010 Toy Insider – Hot 20, 2010 The National Parenting Center – Seal of Approval, 2010 Prémio Brazil – Award of Excellence, 2010 Parents’ Magazine – Top Toys, 2010 NAPPA – Gold, 2010 ASTRA – Best Toy for Kids 12/2/2009 (MSRP: $24.99; Age: 6 and Up)


LEGO Walkie Talkies by DIGITAL BLUE

LEGO Walkie Talkies by DIGITAL BLUEThese walkie-talkies with cool LEGO styling stay connected up to a mile away. They are easy to use - one channel, simple push-to-talk-button and volume control.
— As of 10/26/2011 this product had 3.9 out of 5 stars from 37 reviews on Amazon.com. Pros: Easy to use; fun design. Cons: Batteries run out quickly. 11/17/2011 (MSRP: $24.99; Age: 7 to 15)


Disney's Jake and The Never Land Pirates - Jake, Hook and Croc Pirate Pack by FISHER-PRICE INC.

DisneyJAKE AND THE NEVER LAND PIRATES characters come to life in these Action Adventure Pirate Packs. The characters are in cool action poses and are ready for an island adventure. One pack includes Jake and his Telescope, Izzy and her Pixie Dust pouch, and Cubby and his Treasure Map. The second pack includes Jake and his sword, Captain Hook and Tick Tock Croc. 12/17/2012 (MSRP: $10.99; Age: 3 to 6)


Stomp Rocket Jr. Glow Kit by D & L COMPANY

Stomp Rocket Jr. Glow Kit by D & L COMPANYWhen kids stomp on the launch pad, a blast of air propels the Stomp Rocket over 100 feet into the air. This kit comes with four glow-in-the-dark foam rockets.
— As of 12/17/2012 this product had 4.6 out of 5 stars from 291 reviews on Amazon.com. PROS: Simple to use, no assembly, rockets fly high, and foam construction of rockets doesn't damage people or property. CONS: Could use a sturdier base and wingnut/screw connection.
— In an August 2010 TDmonthly survey of 43 retailers, three cited Stomp Rockets as an overall top seller.
— Stephanie Dupuy of Playville in Covington, La., told TDmonthly in a November 2011 survey that their best selling flying toy is Stomp Rocket. They sell between 12 and 18 each month, depending on the weather. 7/26/2010 (MSRP: $14.99; Age: 3 and Up)


Spot It! by BLUE ORANGE GAMES

Spot It! by BLUE ORANGE GAMESSpot It is a party game for two to eight players. It's played by laying a random assortment of cards on the table and all players racing to find one image that matches between two cards. This fast-paced game is designed to never be the same twice, and though it has very few rules to remember it requires a sharp eye to master. The set of 55 round cards transports in its own carry tin. Watch Spot It: Top-5 Video, Toy Fair 2010
— Spot It has been been a top seller for retailers surveyed by TDmonthly since early Spring 2010.
— In a March 2012 survey, 3 out of 12 retailers told TDmonthly that Spot It was their overall best selling product, and had been for more than a year.
— Dean Smith, Co-owner of JaZams in Princeton, N.J., told TDmonthly in a Summer 2011 survey that he sells 50-60 copies of Spot It each month.
Awards: 2010 TDmonthly Top Seller, Dr. Toy 100 Best Children's Products - 2010

Where to buy:
SOUTH
NORTH EAST
NORTH WEST (Watch the Spot It! Video Watch Video) 2/11/2010 (Age: 6 and Up)


Ticket to Ride by DAYS OF WONDER

Ticket to Ride by DAYS OF WONDERBorrowing a Beatles song as its title, this 2004 Spiel des Jahres ("Game of the Year")winner is extraordinarily popular among the board game cognoscenti with sales just over 250,000 and availability in six languages and 30 countries. Players embark on a “track trip,” collecting train cards to connect cities in an effort to claim the longest rail route in North America. - Andrew Robinton
— As of 12/17/2012 this product had 4.8 out of 5 stars from 463 reviews on Amazon.com. (Watch the Ticket to Ride Video Watch Video) 1/18/2005 (MSRP: $39.95; Age: 8 and Up)


SC-300 Snap Circuits by ELENCO

SC-300 Snap Circuits by ELENCOSnap Circuits make learning electronics easy and fun. Kids follow the colorful pictures in the manual to build exciting projects, such as FM radios, burglar alarms, doorbells and more. Parts are mounted on plastic modules and snap together with ease. “Children can play with this kit for hours and hours and still have not completed all the projects the snap circuit kits have to offer,” Walter Larsen, national sales manager for Elenco, told TDmonthly.
— One retailer said in summer 2007 his store sells 25 Elenco units monthly. Five percent of 64 retailers said in August 2008 that Snap Circuits are a best-selling science product, reporting average sales of six units per month. Four of 38 retailers echoed the same a year later. “They’ve gone back to this game six or seven times,” between January and July 2006, said TDmonthly's homeschooling mom Susan Ledford.
— Any time TDmonthly asks specialty storeowners about top-selling science toys, Elenco's Snap Circuits heads the list. This simple electronics kit appeals to both girls and boys. By making science fun and easy, Snap Circuits earned a TDmonthly Classic Toy 2007 award.
—  As of 12/17/2012 this product had 4.8 out of 5 stars from 575 reviews on Amazon.com. Cons: One user said that her grandchildren were "not all that interested" in the Snap Circuits, and told her that they would prefer LEGOs on their birthday. (Watch the SC-300 Snap Circuits Video Watch Video) 10/27/2005 (MSRP: $59.95; Age: 8 and Up)






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