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19 October 2019

FEATURE: Christmas Gift Guide 2019 #2


Credit cards at the ready!

As the time ticks down, and the weather gets worse, so we edge ever closer to Christmas. As we explored in our previous Christmas Gift Guide for 2019, there are lots of new and fun things to look forward to buying. Because buying things is fun, right? If your kids are already making demands via their passive aggressive wish list to Santa, check below to see if any of this kit is on it.



Monopoly Voice Banking


Monopoly Voice Banking

Okay, full confession: we are NOT fans of Monopoly. Blame bad experiences in childhood when so-called "friends and family" would take great pleasure in bankrupting us and laughing when we went straight to jail without passing go. Fortunately we're all grown-up now, and actually do own several properties on Mayfair (lolz!) so we were a little better prepared for the new Monopoly Voice Banking edition.

Monopoly Voice Banking

Monopoly has seen several new releases over the years, from city specific versions, to themed and character sets. However, this new Voice Banking adds a fun and interactive element that will make you look at the game in a new way. The biggest change here is the lack of physical money, and the addition of the central unit that speaks. Instead of handing cash over to your opponents, you make a voice request to Mr. Monopoly and he updates accounts. This makes for faster play and less cluttered coffee tables.

When it works. As good as it was, there were occasions when the voice unit failed to recognise our voices correctly. This didn't impact the game too much, and nothing ever went wrong, but it was necessary to occasionally repeat oneself. Just saying. Still, for fans of Monopoly (or haters) this new version adds a fun and innovative element to Christmas games.

£29.99

Available from www.amazon.co.uk



Mr. Potato Head Movin' Lips


Mr. Potato Head Movin' Lips

Another new version of a classic toy, Mr. P himself is back and this time he's talkin'. The Movin' Lips edition of everyone's favourite editable toy features a remarkable new feature with lips that move and actually talk. Build him up, slap on the lips, then press a button. He'll utter one of 40 random phrases, while the lips move, and he'll sing along to four different songs - including a parody of 'Lips are Movin' by Meghan Trainer.

Mr. Potato Head Movin' Lips

This is still a conventional Mr. Potato Head, however, and kids will be happy to hear all the other parts, like arms, eyes, and nose, are compatible with other Mr. Potato Heads. You could even stick the lips onto a Mrs. Potato Head, should you have one, for gender-bending Christmas fun! Something we all love.

With a refreshing and interactive twist on a family favourite, Mr. Potato Head Movin' Lips is sure to be a hit this festive season.

£16.99

Available from www.amazon.co.uk



Fortnite Action Figures


Fortnite Action Figures

One range of toys which will definitely fill many under-tree spaces this year, will be Fortnite. The online games has gone from strength to strength this past year, hitting headlines and diversifying with new and fun toys. Action figure fans will be pleased to see that all their favourite characters are represented in plastic form in time for Christmas, and in several different sizes.

Fortnite Action Figures

We've been sent a selection from maker Jazware's range, from the smaller Squad Packs, with non-articulating figures, to the larger and more playable 7 inch characters. Each come with accessories, weapons, and some even with terrain. Larger playsets are also up for grabs, including the Battle Bus itself, and buildable forts with modular parts. Creating a landscape, then pretending to blow the crap out of it and each other is very doable.

Our favourite line from the range has to be the 4 inch action figures. The packs, which weigh in at only £8.99 (ish) feature a figure with 19 points of articulation, several weapons and accessories, and a small piece of terrain. They are a great way to build up a fighting force for smaller hands, and offer pleasing pose-ability for grown up fans to enjoy, too.

Discover the full range at www.amazon.co.uk



Baby Shark Puppet


Baby Shark Puppet

If we asked you to name an annoying song, what would you choose? For us it has to be the internet sensation Baby Shark (do do do do do do) which, once stuck in your head, will remain there forever. Which is why we're happy to introduce you to a toy that will wedge that song even further into your mind. The Baby Shark Puppet not only acts like a glove puppet of said Baby Shark (or Mummy Shark and Daddy Shark) but it will also sing along... as controlled by you.

Baby Shark Puppet

The first time we played with it we thought it was broken. That's because once you stick you hand in there and start moving, the Baby Shark song starts. However, if you don't keep moving your hand, the song slows down, sounding like the batteries are dying. That's because it is tempo controlled, meaning the faster you move your hand, the faster that lovely song goes. So... not only does it play the song, it also gives kids the chance to make it go painfully fast or achingly slow. Nice.

That said, our little testers really loved it - more so than anything else they played with in this guide. The puppet itself is soft and plush, so makes a great cuddly toy, then offers a bit of interactive fun thanks to the tempo control. If you love your children more than your own sanity, get them this.

£19.99

Available from www.amazon.co.uk




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