Tag Archives: toys

I Wish Lego’s Beautifully Detailed Moon Landing Set Also Included More Accurate Looking Astronauts

Toys and CollectiblesAction figures, statues, exclusives, and other merchandise. Beware: if you look here, you’re probably going to spend some money afterwards.  

July marks the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 mission which successfully landed two astronauts on the moon, and Lego is one of countless companies hoping to cash in on the accomplishment with a new 1,087-piece set that recreates the Lunar Lander with an impressive amount of detailing. But I’m a little disappointed the included Lego minifigures look like astronauts transplanted from a futuristic sci-fi movie.

One small step for man, and one even smaller step for a Lego minifigure.
Photo: Lego

Officially available starting June 1 for $100, the set includes the Apollo 11 Eagle lunar module with detachable ascent and descent stages so you can recreate the historic mission again and again. But for those times when you’re not procrastinating at work, the set also serves as a desk-friendly collectible allowing you to perch and display the lunar lander on an included replica of the moon’s surface—complete with craters, footprints, and a US flag.

There’s a respectable level of detail here for what is technically a children’s building toy, and Lego has even gone to the trouble of creating special gold versions of several parts so that the Lunar Lander set looks as accurate as possible. You won’t be fooling anyone if you try to use the model to snap fake moon landing photos, but for $100 it also doesn’t require you to break out the hobby knives, glue, or paint.

The Apollo 11 astronaut minifigures wear the same spacesuit as the intrepid explorers in Lego’s new Mars-based playsets.
Photo: Lego

What’s disappointing, however, are the tiny spacesuits worn by the set’s astronaut minifigures. They’re the same spacesuit helmets used in other Lego sets, including a series of futuristic Mars-based playsets also released today. The included Apollo 11 minifigures are slightly different, but the set would have felt even more authentic had Lego gone the extra mile and created custom minifigure astronauts with spacesuits that more closely resembled what the real Apollo-era astronauts wore. The company churns out hundreds of new minifigures every year across its various sets and collectible series, so a retro spacesuit doesn’t seem like too egregious a request.

Source: Kotaku.com

The New Tamagotchi Can Marry and Breed

Photo: Andrew Liszewski (Gizmodo)
Toys and CollectiblesAction figures, statues, exclusives, and other merchandise. Beware: if you look here, you’re probably going to spend some money afterwards.  

Twenty-two years after its initial release, and several years after countless revivals and re-releases, Tamagotchis have returned yet again with some interesting features like smartphone connectivity and the ability for your virtual pets to marry someone else’s and have kids. Tamagotchi? More like Tamagotchu for 18 years.

If you’re somehow unfamiliar with the toy, the Tamagotchi is like the modern version of the pet rock, but with most of the responsibilities and care that a real-life animal would require. That includes feeding your virtual pet, caring for it, playing with it, cleaning it, and generally interacting with it on a regular basis to keep it alive, happy, and growing. The latest iteration, Tamagotchi On, expands what you can do with the digital creature, but as an adult with a lot on his plate already, am I the only one who’s starting to feel these are more overwhelming than fun?

The most obvious update to Tamagotchi On is that it’s almost gigantic compared to previous versions of the toy that could hang off a keychain without being noticed. The new version is considerably larger, and as a result, it might have a hard time competing for pocket space against a smartphone.

One thing that hasn’t changed with Tamagotchi On are the three simple buttons used to interact with the virtual pet and to navigate the toy’s menus. It works, once you get used to how the navigation works (the buttons are unlabelled) but as the menus, settings, and options have expanded quite a bit in this version, it might finally be time for Bandai America to consider introducing an alternative—like a tiny touchscreen now that smartwatches have demonstrated they’re not impossibly small to use.

One small gripe: why didn’t Bandai America include a keychain with the new version? It has the holes to attach one, but it’s BYOK.

The Tamagotchi On’s full-color screen isn’t new, that feature was introduced as far back as 2008 with the Tamagotchi Plus Color in Japan, but it’s finally making an appearance here in the US. The colors are vibrant, even in bright light, and given the screen’s small size the lack of pixel density isn’t an issue. Besides, the crude pixelated graphics and stuttered animations are part of a Tamagotchi’s charm and appeal at this point. I’m not sure if I’d want a virtual pet that looked and acted more lifelike—I’d be devastated when it eventually died.

That being said, all the features that have been added to the Tamagotchi line over the years are starting to make the toy’s menus feel a little bloated. You’ll find yourself randomly digging through endless sub-menus to find an option you’re looking for, and a display with more resolution would allow more options to be squeezed onto each screen.

The ability for two Tamagotchi Ons to wirelessly communicate over IR isn’t new either, that feature was first introduced with the Tamagotchi Connection back in 2004. But it now facilitates more interactions between Tamagotchis on different devices. You can have playdates, send your virtual pet off to visit a friend or a hotel, and even propose marriage to another Tamagotchi. If they say yes, your virtual pets will consummate their relationship (presumably off-screen) resulting in each one receiving an egg that will hatch and grow into a child that looks like both its parents. Up to 16 generations of a family can exist on a device at a given time, which sounds exhausting. To make things a little easier, there’s even the option for your younger Tamagotchi to spend the day being babysat by its parents.

Tamagotchi On will be available starting in July for $60—which is the least appealing feature of the latest version—they’re no longer a cheap $15 impulse purchase. But when it launches, Bandai America will also be releasing an accompanying mobile app (it wasn’t available for testing yet) that the Tamagotchi can wirelessly connect to to further expand what your virtual pet can do, where it can go, and who it can meet—including Tamagotchis all around the world. Instead of trying to compete with smartphones, Tamagotchis may have finally embraced them so kids have more incentive to keep their pets alive.

Note: at the time of publication both of the writer’s Tamagotchi were still alive and well.

Source: Kotaku.com

Another Terrific Persona 5 Figure

Good Smile Company is back with another excellent Persona 5 figure, this time for the game’s most misunderstood asshole, Ryuji.

Releasing in October, he comes with three different faces, pipe, shotgun, calling card and alternative hair piece.

He’s retailing for just under USD$60.

Source: Kotaku.com

Please, LEGO, Make This Pirate Island

LEGO’s Pirates sets dominated my Christmas wishlists when I was a kid. But as good as they were, from Sabre Island to the Barracuda, none were as detailed or as cool as this new design called The Pirate Bay by Bricky_Brick.

Made for LEGO’s IDEAS site, where fans vote on sets and LEGO picks some to actually get made and sold, it’s a pirate island that’s as detailed as it is massive, using wrecked ships and foliage to hide everything from a tavern to gun emplacements to a jail cell.

To get a shot at being made, an IDEAS project has to get over 10,000 votes on LEGO’s site. This is already at around 8500 after less than a month, so things are looking good!

To vote for The Pirate Bay, head here.

Source: Kotaku.com

Anyone For Sonic The Hedgehog LEGO?

LEGO Ideas—the community program where fans can get their dream sets made—currently has a Sonic submission up for voting, and it looks great.

Based on 2017’s Sonic Mania, it would include Sonic & Eggman minifigs, a giant Eggman mech, a bunch of enemies, a Phantom Ruby, rings and some Green Hill Zone terrain modules that could be moved around.

It’s far from the first Sonic submission to the site, but I like how this one tones it down a little, focusing as much on the landscape as it does the minifigs. That, plus the fact it’s based on a recent and successful game, means it might actually get a shot at being made (provided Sega were willing to play ball).

There are more pics of the playset pitch here.

via Go Nintendo

Source: Kotaku.com

Hasbro Is Releasing Overwatch Action Figures Later This Year

Photo: Hasbro

Hasbro has announced that they are partnering up with Blizzard Entertainment to release a series of action figures and other toys based on the popular hero shooter Overwatch.

Nine Overwatch heroes are getting turned into figures, which will be available Spring 2019. Lucio, Sombra, Tracer, Reinhardt, Anna, Soldier 76, Pharah, Mercy and Reaper are the first heroes you’ll be able to buy and add to your toy collection. The action figures will stand 6 inches tall and will feature props and articulation, letting you pose them however you desire.

Some of the figures will be sold individually for $23 each, while Pharah & Mercy and Soldier 76 & Anna will be sold in double packs that will, according to Gamestop, each cost $50.

Reinhardt is a slightly wider and more complex figure and will cost $50 by himself. Though he does come with a pretty awesome and large shield.

Get behind me!
Photo: Hasbro

Hasbro also revealed they will be releasing an Overwatch themed Monopoly board game and some blasters based on Lucio’s weapons he uses in Overwatch. The blasters will cost $10 and the themed Monopoly set will cost $50.

According to Polygon, Hasbro has said all of the figures and other toys will be available at most major toy retailers nationwide.

About the author

Zack Zwiezen

Zack Zwiezen is a a writer living in Kansas City, Missouri. He has written for Gamecritics, USgamer, Killscreen and Entertainment Fuse.

Source: Kotaku.com

Transformers Meets Ghostbusters in This Totally Tubular ’80s Toy Mashup 

I might have had dreams like this.
Photo: Hasbro
Toys and CollectiblesAction figures, statues, exclusives, and other merchandise. Beware: if you look here, you’re probably going to spend some money afterwards.  

Think of the ultimate tool for separating grownup ‘80s kids from their hard-earned cash and it’s hard to imagine it will look any different than what Hasbro’s revealing at the New York Toy Fair this weekend: a Transformers meets Ghostbusters mashup that sees Ecto-1 transforming into a ghost-trapping robot toy. And io9 is giddy to exclusively show it to you today.

Put this character in the next Ghostbusters sequel, please.

Do transforming robots from Cybertron turn into ghosts when they’re dead or deactivated? Neither the ‘80s animated series, nor the recent run of Hollywood Transformers movies have answered that question, so Ectotron, who comes with his own proton pack and paranormal activity-detecting goggles, might only be designed to battle human specters.

A non-transforming Slimer figure is included.
Photo: Hasbro

Ectotron transforms from a seven-inch long replica of the Ghostbusters Ecto-1 vehicle to a robot (and back again) in about 22 steps, which isn’t terribly complicated as modern Transformers toys go. It doesn’t come with the Ghostbusters themselves—you’ll have to leave that part to your imagination—but it does include a transparent Slimer figure so Ectotron will have an actual ghost to bust right out of the box.

You’ll have to wait until early June to add this $40 piece to your collection when it will be exclusively available in-store at GameStop. But you can get it online too, with pre-orders starting today at GameStop’s site, HasbroPulse.com, and EB Games Canada.

For more, make sure you’re following us on our new Instagram @io9dotcom.

Source: Kotaku.com

Jurassic World’s T-Rex Fighting Mecha T-Rex Is the Lego Set of My Childhood Fantasies

Photo: Lego
Toys and CollectiblesAction figures, statues, exclusives, and other merchandise. Beware: if you look here, you’re probably going to spend some money afterwards.  

Lego’s partnering with Universal for a new 13-episode animated mini-series called Lego Jurassic World: Legend of Isla Nublar that takes place before both of the Jurassic World movies. It’s a thinly-veiled attempt to sell more toys, but I’m totally fine with that since one of the sets features Jurassic Park’s much-loved T-rex battling a robotic doppelgänger. Did Lego somehow find a trove of my childhood drawings?

The toymaker sold me at Dino-Mech, which is how the robotic T-rex is described in this 716-piece set that will be available in the fall for $90. But I’m even more in love with the idea of this mechanical thunder lizard given it features the same color palette and designs as the tour vehicles in the original Jurassic Park: a film I will never tire of.

The set also includes a volcano in mid-eruption that opens to reveal a treasure chest inside, four new minifigures including Chris Pratt’s Owen Grady and Bryce Dallas Howard’s Claire Dearing, a boat, and baby versions of Grady’s trained velociraptors—including Blue.

Lego Jurassic World: Legend of Isla Nublar will also spawn three additional sets including the $60, 447-piece Lego Triceratops Rampage, the $60, 434-piece Baryonyx Face-Off: The Treasure Hunt, and the $20, 168-piece Dilophosaurus on the Loose. They’ll also be available come the Fall, presumably closer to when the new animated series will air. They’ll each add more dinosaurs to your Lego collection, but only one comes with that magnificent mechanical park menace.

For more, make sure you’re following us on our new Instagram @io9dotcom.

Source: Kotaku.com

This D&D/Stranger Things Crossover is What Barb Would’ve Wanted

Hasbro is releasing a Stranger Things-themed Dungeons & Dragons starter set to help you kill time before the Netflix drops the third season.

Right now, you can pre-order Hasbro Stranger Things Dungeons & Dragons Roleplaying Game Starter Set for $25. In addition to all of the necessities you’ll need to start (a rule book, dice, character sheets, etc.), you can also look forward to the “Hunt for the Thessalhydra,” the scenario dreamt up by Mike Wheeler and played during the show’s first episode.

This kind of crossover is the type of thing you kind of knew was bound to happen (seeing as Stranger Things ostensibly brought D&D back into the mainstream) but you’re still stoked when it does.

Stranger Things fans and D&D enthusiasts can all share in the terror of facing the Demogorgon when the set arrives in May.

(But if you can’t wait til then for some dungeon crawling fun, the o.g. Dungeons & Dragons Starter Set is still on sale for less than $10.)

Source: Kotaku.com

An Exclusive Look at the Amazing New Zord Toys Coming With Power Rangers: Beast Morphers

It’s time for some Zord power!
Image: Hasbro
Toys and CollectiblesAction figures, statues, exclusives, and other merchandise. Beware: if you look here, you’re probably going to spend some money afterwards.  

You know the drill, ranger fans: a new show, a new team of rangers, and a new bunch of zords to combine and transform into the Megazord. With Beast Morphers on the way, that’s happening all over again—but there’s a bit of a twist on the toy front this time, thanks to the arrival of Hasbro’s era of Power Rangers.

[Full disclosure: the Power Rangers franchise was created, and previously owned, by Haim Saban, who has ownership interest in Univision Communications, which itself currently owns Gizmodo Media Group, the network of websites io9 is part of.]

Beast Morphers marks the first Power Rangers series released under the franchise’s new owners, Hasbro—which doesn’t just affect the show itself, it affects the toys, which are now also under Hasbro’s auspices.

Ahead of New York Toy Fair, the company has been revealing its plans for the Rangerverse of toys in bits and parts, from roleplay accessories to action figures, but io9 can now exclusively reveal what is sure to be one of the highlights of the first waves of Beast Morphers merchandise: the transforming Zords you’ll be able to collect to form the mightiest weapon in the Beast Morpher team’s arsenal: the Beast-X Megazord and Beast-X Ultrazord.

Arriving in Fall 2019, the new Zords fit into two categories: three of them are dual converting Zords that can transform between vehicle and animal modes, while two are triple changing Zords with vehicle, animal, and individual Robotic modes of their own.

Let’s kick off with the three dual-changing Zords, which will retail for $25 apiece. The Blue Ranger’s Beast Wheeler Zord can turn into both a mechanized Gorilla and a “wheeler” truck form, while the Yellow Ranger’s Beast Chopper transforms between a Jackrabbit and, you guessed it, an attack helicopter. They’re joined by the mysterious Beast Jet Zord, which can switch between Scarab and Jet modes.

The two triple changing Zords will set you back $30 each—the Red Ranger’s Beast Racer can transform from bike mode to a Cheetah form and its very own Robot mode, forming the base for the Beast-X Megazord. Meanwhile, the Gold Ranger’s Beast Wrecker can transform between Robot, mantis, and a construction “wrecker.”

While each separate Zord has its own play functions, the real morphinominal magic happens when you merge them all together: combining the Zords of the Red, Blue, and Yellow Rangers will form the Beast X-Megazord, which you can check out below, while adding the Beast Wrecker and the Beast Jet Zord into the mix will allow kids to form the ultimate Beast-X Ultrazord.

The Beast-X Megazord, made when you combine the Beast Wheeler, Beast Chopper, and Beast Racer.
Image: Hasbro

Got a younger kid (or are a kid at heart yourself) and want to introduce them to the wild world of Power Rangers Zords? Well, it’s not Beast Morphers, but we can also exclusively reveal the next Zord in Playskool’s line of Power Rangers Heroes Zords for young fans: the legendary Dragon Thunderzord from later seasons of the original Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers.

Clocking in at a whopping 14 inches tall, the Playskool Dragon Thunderzord includes lights, sounds and moving arms and wings, all activated by pressing down on the Zord’s tail. If you place the included 3-inch tall version of the Red Ranger (complete with famous Dragon Shield) on the Zord, he’ll activate a secret pop-up projectile launcher to barrage any unfortunate foes with!

The Playskool Dragon Thunderzord will also release in fall alongside the other Beast Morphers Zords, and set you back $30. Looks like later this year is gonna be a hell of a time to be a Power Rangers fan!

For more, make sure you’re following us on our new Instagram @io9dotcom.

Source: Kotaku.com