Magnetic Toys

Despite being one of the smaller sectors in the industry, having been plagued with court cases and safety issues, there remains a great deal of innovation in magnetic toys. ToyNews finds out about the latest offerings...
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Despite being one of the smaller sectors in the industry, having been plagued with court cases and safety issues, there remains a great deal of innovation in magnetic toys. ToyNews finds out about the latest offerings...

MEGA BRANDS - 01844 350033

With growing excitement for the August launch, Battle Strikers bring magnetic attraction to a range of controllable, customisable and collectible battling tops. The magnetic feature allows the spinning tops to be guided and controlled so boys aged eight to 12 can take on their mates.

With a host of different products from starter kits and additional collectible tops, through to Battle Strikers Battling Arenas, the new range offers opportunities for retailers to become a one-stop-shop for this product.

A high profile summer launch for the brand will include sampling, a TV campaign starting early August and PR activity. Mega will continue to support Battle Strikers with further heavyweight TV and PR to ensure a strong emphasis on building the brand and supporting gift sets as Christmas approaches.

The multi award-winning MagNext range continues, providing infinite build opportunities and a creative construction experience. New elements expand play pattern including tricks and character play, with improved storage solutions, after-play experience and new colours and graphics across the range.

New system assortments with hundreds of build possibilities will strengthen the collectability of MagNext. This includes System Tricks, available in solid colours at a low price point, so kids can create magnetic tricks.

The System Tube, System Deluxe and System Ultimate Assortments all come complete with free ideas booklets featuring a range of build ideas, while the System Ultimate Vehicle featuring Jack, a MagNext man, and hundreds of build possibilities is the hero product in the range.

Designed to support strong sales of MagNext in the girls market is the new MagNext Creations range. Offering new themes, play patterns and appropriate colours and graphics, MagNext Creations features a variety of assortments including the Core, Tube, Deluxe and Ultimate sets, introducing new parts for more customized builds with decorative finishing touches and, girly build ideas including jewellery box, pictures frames and more.

For gadget loving kids, MagNext’s iPark is a magnetic amusement park and high-tech construction set. The iPark set boasts an improved iCoaster design featuring brand new stunts, 20 extreme build options, a new light effect magnetic elevator and MP3 compatibility.

FLAIR - 020 8643 0320

With the second series recently launched and the Atomic range out in the summer, boys will want to collect each of the five 12cm Gormiti Magnetic Figures, swapping body parts from each of the characters to create their own unique Gormiti.
Gormiti is a collectable assortment of hero actions figures, trading cards and play-sets and was the fastest growing boys’ brand in the UK for 2008 (NPD 2008). A PR and TV campaign for the brand is planned for 2009.
Flair’s licensed Magnetic Play-Sets are themed around characters from In the Night Garden, Thomas & Friends and Peppa Pig. Ideal for travelling, each set contains background sheets and themed magnetic pieces for creating scenes in the lid of the tin.

In the Night Garden and Peppa Pig Mega and Mini Doodle Fun are magnetic doodling boards, which incorporate characters from the shows. Draw and doodle on the screen then slide the eraser to start again.

The Mini Doodle Fun items have been particularly successful owing to the moulded Peppa and Iggle Piggle characters, which hold the mini board.

Alternatively Flair offers the Hello Kitty 12cm Magnetic Plush Assortment –plush characters with magnetic hands and feet.

TREASURE TROVE - 01285 762039

Treasure Trove first introduced Magnetic Construction in 2001. 2009 sees the launch of the new breed of Supermag; Tryron. Tryron retains many of the features which made magnetic construction such a compulsive and successful category. The new Tryron piece is targeted at children aged three plus. Its unusual shape challenges the model builder to create multiple geometric designs as well as models of objects with which we are more familiar.

Tryron is available at retail from August 2009 and the Treasure Trove sales team will be selling it from July 1st. There are 11 sets in total over three main retail price points, £14.99, £24.99 and £29.99. There are four different themes, blue (boys), pink (girls), green and glow in the dark. Treasure Trove will support the brand in 2009 with point of sale material and PR.

In 2000 Treasure Trove Toys started trading with Quercetti as one of its main brands. Central to that brand is the classic magnetic letters category.

The range has recently been through a packaging facelift which stresses the Italian manufacturing heritage. The magnetic letters now come in hanging acetate packs, while the magnetic play set comes in the re-engineered Combi laptop design. Finally there is the Magnetic Mandala Mosaic set which has become another staple in the line over the last five years.

It is now also five years since Treasure Trove introduced Magnetic Mosaics from the small Canadian manufacturer, The Orb factory. Magnetic Mosaics are re-useable and there are four key sets in this year’s line.

Firstly Magnetic Mosaics Kids features over 700 foam cubes and 20 re-usable templates. The advantage of this product is its lower age range of four years plus, which enables children to experience the mosaic activity earlier. Magnetic Mosaics Metal is a more sophisticated set for age seven upwards with 2100 metallic foam mosaics. There are also two smaller tin sets, Magnetic Mosaics Metal Junior and the Wooden Magnetic Colour Cubes.

Treasure Trove launched Hair-EE Magno-Z in 2006. The company’s most successful sets are the singles, sold in canisters and retailing at £1.99 and the triple packs at £5.99, where one piece is sold blind so the consumer does not know if it’s a collectable piece or not. This simple marketing ploy has proved very successful in building collectability of this magnetic novelty.

JOHN CRANE - 01604 774949

John Crane has new magnetic additions to its GoGo Toys range. The Flower Park playing board features flowers housed under a Perspex cover, keeping magnets and other small parts safely tucked away - even the magic stylus is attached so nothing can ever get lost from the game.

Based on the award-winning Dino Egg Counting, the aim of this game is to take flowers to their rightful places using a magnetic magic wand.

For more brain taxing, there is the Magnetic Labyrinth also from GoGo Toys. Again being housed under Perspex, and with the wand attached, the labyrinth is carved into the wooden frame and is a complex treat for puzzling kids. The magic wand takes small ball-bearings around the maze picking them up either from above or below the board.



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