Kids put hot toys to the test

November 20, 2008 4:23:59 PM PST
Attention all you Santa's helpers, you know the holiday wish list has been drawn up, but will the items on that list be hit or toy box clutter?It's hard to know the answer until you turn the kids loose.

If you ask kids what they want this holiday season, you'll probably get a lot of different answers.

So Consumer Reports gathered 47 kids, ages six to 12, to play with two dozen toys that are supposed to be hot sellers this season.

The toys ranged from newcomers like the $30 Bakugan Battle Brawler to old standbys like the $90 Lego set.

Some were hits. Others were misses.

The Bill Nye the Science Guy Paper Recycling Factory for $28 drew a crowd at first. But when the kids couldn't get it to work they quickly lost interest.

So what were the kids' top toys?

The life-sized, pricey pooch tops out at $180 dollars, but FurReal Friends Biscuit was really popular with all the kids.

And the Hasbro Lazer Tag 2-in-1 System for $90 was a hit, too.

For much less, the Fisher Price Color Me Gemz for $20 dazzled the girls.

"All you do is color in these dots and it looks like you can buy it out of the store," explained one tester.

The boys had fun building the $50 Hot Wheels Speed Racer Sky Jump Track and flipped for it when it was done.

If you have a wannabe-secret agent on your list, Consumer Reports testers said the Jakks Pacific EyeClops Night Vision $80 goggles were also a hit.

These toys were tested using age appropriate kids and that is a big reminder to parents. Always make sure the toys are the right age for your kids, that way you can avoid some of the dangers that come with toys, like swallowing little pieces.

Also, most of these toys are still available, but store managers told me that toy shipments seem to be light this year because of the cooling economy. So if there is something on the wish list, it's probably a good idea to get that now rather than later.

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