The private Playmobil room showed off items we can now reveal, as the embargo has lifted. As well as The Real Ghostbusters figures and vehicles, this range included an innovative hologram technology called Playmogram 3D. When the Ghostbusters II set launches on 5 February 2018, you’ll be able to project a hologram into a clear plastic pyramid that sits on your phone, press the trap button and watch the ghost you chose get sucked into it!
Playmobil also secretly showed off new characters from DreamWorks’ Dragons animated series. Snotbut, Hookfang, Fishlegs and Meatlug will all feature in the series later this year, and their sets launch on 10 August 2018.
The 65th annual Toy Fair – the UK’s largest dedicated toy, game and hobby showcase – is currently taking place at Olympia in West London. The annual event at the end of January plays host to more than 250 exhibitors showing off thousands of new toy lines – from start-ups to some of the biggest toy companies.
The event has never been more vital, as 2017 saw UK toy sales decrease by 2.8 per cent, a drop of over £400m. Underperforming licenses, Brexit (particularly the impact on the pound), and the growing concern around counterfeit toys were all blamed for the dip, according to the British Toy and Hobby Association (BTHA) and the NPD Group. Still, having previously enjoyed three consecutive years of growth and a particularly strong 2016, the UK is still the largest market in Europe with sales of £3.4bn overall, despite the small decline.
MyMBuzz.com stalked the halls and walked the balconies to pick out some of our favourite items.
There were plenty of Power Rangers products to see at the Bandai Namco stand (especially as there’ll be 22 new episodes of Power Rangers Super Ninja Steel on Pop this summer), although we were only allowed to take photos of a few items. We liked the Drop and Pop Power Rangers figures (£8.99, out in Feb, not pictured). These chibi-style figures click into a base, which you can then drop to watch them jump back into the air on contact.
A range of ‘Legacy’ Morphin products also caught our eye. This included Micro Morphin figures (£3.99, out this month), some Legacy Auto Morphin figures (£24.99, out in Feb) and the Legacy Zeo Golden Power Staff (a whopping £149.99, out in March).
Those looking to cosplay as classic Power Rangers will also love the look of the Legacy Green Ranger Helmet (£109.99, also out in March).
BIG HERO 6
Disney XD will play host to 25 new episodes of the Big Hero 6 animated series in February 2018, with a range of associated products to follow in July. No pics allowed, we’re afraid, but we loved the Micro Chibi Figures (£5.99 each, £9.99 for a twin pack), although the star of the show was Mini-Max. The stand had a pencil-drawn video showing his entrance in the animated series, and we think this tiny version of Baymax is set to be a fan fave. The Mini-Max figure (£24.99) is a hard-plastic poseable being with set phrases that trigger when you push the button on his back.
We saw a ton of stuff we’d love to tell you about in the private Playmobil room, but you’ll have to wait till 2 February 2018 when the embargo lifts.
Until then, here’s a pic of sets based on The Explorers, which sees three heroes take their dog on adventures through time, with the first trip to Dinosaur Island and a hidden temple. The products are released on 4 June 2018.
There will also be Advent Calendars at the end of the year, with sets building into a Horse Farm, an environment for Top Agents and Santa’s Workshop featuring “lots of festive surprises”. Look for them from 3 September 2018.
They weren’t the only seasonal countdowns on display. Model-kit maker Revell will have an Advent Calendar based on Solo: A Star Wars Story, although all we’ve seen so far is a teasing black box and the news that it’ll be released in September 2018 with an RRP of £29.99.
Three other items tied to the movie (dubbed Solo New Item A, B and C) will also be released in April 2018, costing £24.99 each.
Given that Revell already makes a Millennium Falcon Build & Play kit and a Millennium Falcon Classic, we’d expect the new Falcon seen in leaked LEGO images to be one of those.
SAMBRO PUZZLE PALZ
These gorgeous 3D erasers are almost too good to be used to rub out pencil mistakes.
Each comes in a small plastic box, so you’ll probably want to do some swaps to complete your collection.
They were still “subject to licensor approval”, but the figures from Despicable Me, Incredibles, Toy Story and Paw Patrol looked great to us.
Tomy’s Harry Potter products are already available to buy, but we couldn’t turn down the opportunity to get up close and personal with such a fun and incredibly soft and squeezable range.
From Cushions featuring the major characters (£19.99) and large plushies that include Hedwig the Owl (£16.99) to clip-on characters riding broomsticks (our fave, £7.00) and a massive XXL Plush of Harry (£99.99), there’s something for every Hogwarts fan.
MULTI-LEVEL SNAKES AND LADDERS
This clever twist on the classic game stands 21cm tall and features five levels. Multi-Level Snakes and Ladders comes as a flat-pack that can be built and then taken apart for storage, with full-colour instructions to aid you.
ATTACK ON TITAN
We got drawn to these Backpack Hangers thanks to the Attack on Titan figures, with fan-fave characters appearing in mystery packs for you to collect.
Most are £5.99 a pop, although premium franchises such as Disney/Marvel will be £7.
The Simba Dickie Group was showing off a whole bunch of products built around Bumblebee, who gets his own spin-off movie in December 2018. Options included three different remote-controlled Camaro cars – from small to massive. The RC Ultimate Bumblebee actually transforms and has a live cam in his head that beams images to your phone.
ONE PUNCH MAN
Star Images grabbed our attention with a mock-up of what its One Punch Man figure might look like.
That’s pretty exciting when you see it next to finished figures for Attack on Titan and Tokyo Ghoul.
The company is also producing more figures for Stranger Things (with the boys dressed as Ghostbusters from Series 2), as well as characters from Destiny 2.
With a massive presence at the show, Funko had some interesting additions to its range of POP figures to show off. We weren’t allowed to snap any of the new releases but they included a collection of British Royal Family figures, including Kate (Duchess of Cambridge), Princes William and Harry, Queen Elizabeth II (with a corgi!) and two versions of Diana rincess of Wales (one in a red dress, one in blue). We also loved the full-sized Rick & Morty Portal Gun. Want!
Hit the link to page two below to see who won the official awards at Toy Fair 2018…