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MAIN Arrow to Home LifeHome Life Arrow to ShoppingShopping Arrow to Most Popular Toys 2005Most Popular Toys

Top Ten Most Popular Toys for the 2012 Holiday Season

Time once again for updates, reviews, and splashy announcements as the holiday gift-giving season approaches in 2012.

Just up ahead, here are the Top Ten most often-mentioned as this year's toy must-haves, based on a survey of review sites, recent toy fairs, and expert lists of releases predicting the hottest toys ahead for the Christmas season:

also see -> 2014 Most Popular Toys | 2013 Most Popular Toys

Bouncy, the happy to see me pupBouncy, The Happy To See Me Pup

Besides her big eyes and cute, floppy years, Bouncy The Happy to See Me Pup is a hi-tech wonder. Fitted with motion sensors, Bouncy acts just like a real dog as it reacts to anyone coming near her with enthusiastic jumping and yapping!

Along with the motion sensor there are is also a touch sensor on Bouncy's back that allows her to react when you softly cuddle or pet her, eliciting gentle puppy noises of happiness.

In short, Bouncy is the kind of toy kids can't help falling in love with. Although the Hasbro's "Furreal Friends" have other similar toys in the line (the $500 Baby Butterscotch pony, for example) Bouncy is really the star of the show this year and a lot easier on the pocketbook.

Suggested retail price: $36.99
Requires 4 "AA" batteries (demo batteries included)
Ages 4 and up

Spiderman web shooterSpider-Man Web Shooting Figure

What young boy doesn't love Spiderman? Jump on this new toy from Hasbro - super fast! - as we see the Spider-Man Web Shooting Figure being this year's Cabbage Patch Kid -- disappearing from shelves as swiftly and suddenly as the superhero himself!

The 13-inch figure features a motorized string web shooters accompanied by cool web-slinging sounds that activate with every blast! Two buttons on the back allows kids "double barrel" action that activates the web-slinging action from either the left or right hand. Kids can also imagine that they're battling one of Spiderman's most powerful enemies as they take aim at the cutout target of The Lizard, included. (We know one 6-year-old who is going to love this...)

Ages 4 and up
Require 4 "AA" batteries (not included)

furby 2012Furby

He's baaack! ....

Slated for a September 16, 2012 release, the new version of the late 1990's sensation is back and better than ever. One of the first interactive toys for kids of all ages, your new Furby arrives at your house speaking only "Furbish" but the more you talk and interact with it the quicker it learns to speak English and react to conversation.

The 2012 version features more expressive LCD eyes, a wider range of motions, and its own iOS app. Besides teal blue, (see photo) new edition Furbies also come in yellow, orange, white, black and purple.

Suggested retail price: $59.99
Requires 4 AA batteries (not included)
Ages 8 months - 8 years

Sphero the robotic ballSphero The Robotic Ball

Described by manufacturer Orbotix as "the ball, evolved", Sphero the Robotic Ball is controlled from your iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, or Android device. Controlling Sphero from your mobile device is supposed to be intuitive -- just tilt, gesture, or swing, and Sphero responds.

Having said that there does seem to be a learning curve for new users, but once you master the Sphero you're bound to get hooked. That is, especially with all the different apps you can download for free including Drive (maneuver through obstacles or play against your friends) Golf (Sphero is the ball and your phone is the club), and lots more.

Suggested retail price: $129.00
2 Lithium ion batteries required (included)

LeapFrog LeapPad2 Explorer

leapfrog leappad2One of the hottest toys last season, The Leapfrog LeapPad Explorer or "the iPad for kids" was praised by parents and kids alike for its kid-friendly size, rounded-edge shape, and range of educational and fun apps.

Now LeapPad 2 offers a whole slew of improvements on the original including still and video cameras at a higher resolutions than the original LeapPad. It also features a faster processor, bigger memory, and improved battery life. Although the suggested ages are 3 - 9 the LeapPad2 is easy enough for even young toddlers to make the leap.

Suggested retail price: $99.99
Ages 3 - 9

flying super groverFlying Super Grover 2.0

Awww... it’s Super Grover!

Making his debut in September 2012, this new addition to the Sesame Street line was a big hit at this year's New York Toy Fair. One look and you'll see why (check out the video, below.)

Add in the new sound effects, and the raised arms as he flies, and this may be prove to be the hottest toy for the young set in 2012.

Forget's Grover all over!

Suggested retail price: $29.99
Ages 2 - 5

Play-Doh Candy Cyclone

play-doh candy cycloneIf you have kids who love Play-Doh, you know that they already love to make pretend food from the classic play material.

Taking the hint, Play-Doh has premiered the Play Doh Candy Cylcone this year so young fans can crank out pretend pretzels, lollipops, gumballs and other candy treats to their heart's content.

The colorful set comes with a plastic knife, 2 dishes, 4 popsicle sticks and, of course, generous amounts of Play-Doh modeling compound. Sweet!

Suggested retail price: $24.99
Ages 3 and up

Crayola Digital Light Designer

Crayons? They're so 2011.

Crayola really enters the electronic age this year with the debut of the Crayola Digital Light Designer. This hi-tech dome, filled with LED lights, allows kids to create images that are limited only by their imaginations.

The stylus also allows kids to erase and redraw on their creations. If kids get bored, the gadget also comes with interactive games and activities that should keep them busy for hours (and just try that with mere paper and crayons!)

Suggested retail price: $49.99
Ages 6 and up

Razor Pro Scooters

razor pro scooterMore than a toy - especially as more grownups have adopted the Razor scooter to navigate urban streets - the popular modern Razor kick-scooter is due for an upgrade this year to "Razor Pro."

In fact, three new models have been introduced including the Razor Pro X, the Razor Pro XX, and the Razor Pro XXX. The different versions feature varying deck sizes, wheels, and bearings -- and hold up to more than 200 lb. passengers!

In addition to being the toy for kids of all ages -- and sizes? -- the new extra heavy duty versions are also more stable for doing all those neat tricks at the scooter park.

Suggested retail price: $89.99
Ages 8 and up

Hobbit LegoHobbit Lego

"The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey" is the theme Lego set to be released on December 1, 2012 just in time for the opening of part one of Peter Jackson's epic film, "The Hobbit". The set features six minifigures – Gandalf the Grey, Bilbo Baggins, and the four dwarves – Dwalin, Bombur, Bofur and Balin.

There's some lovely detail here to spark young imaginations including the grassy top and chimney, the round windows and doors (pictured) that make up anyone's idea of a fantasy Shire.

Ages 8 - 14
Suggested retail price: TBA

More hot toys for 2012 gift giving

For action gadgets just for boys, Ben 10 toys are once again predicted to go 5-alarm hot in 2012 with a new "ultimate" line and more action figures available in the popular series.

Meanwhile, continuing buzz surrounds Transformers toys which lead the pack of sci-fi entries along with equally popular Bakugan Brawlers spawned by the popular anime TV series.

Also still making red hot news in the kids digital camera market is the Kid-Tough See Yourself Camera by Fisher-Price. Featuring a rubber casing that's virtually break-proof, the new kiddie camera also allows young shutterbugs to take self-portraits or shoot HD video.

Harry Potter paraphernalia also continues to be a must-have, while anything to do with Dora the Explorer, Power Rangers, and the latest computer video games always remain perennial favorites year after year.

also see -> Shop for Toys Online | Educational Toys

Most Popular Toys of All Time
Holiday Shopping Guide | Eco Friendly Toys


More about popular toys around the Web

Elsewhere around the Web, browse even more top toys on other "hot" lists recommended by major toy stores and parent associations, plus reviews from comparison shoppers sites, and additional ideas for that perfect gift, game, or educational toy for everybody on your shopping list...

Toy News International - The hottest, latest and greatest in action figures coming down the pike, with reviews, feature stories and industry reports, a Top 100 list, and related resources

Dr. Toy's Guide on the Internet - Find recommendations by an expert PhD in toys covering the current market with a list of 100 best, a review of classic toys still found on store shelves, toy history, trivia & fun facts, related resources


also see -> Toys & Game Reviews Toy reviews

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