Pictionary, that game your parents played but didn’t know why, was first released in 1985 and involved gamers who played with two opposing teams. Each team was asked to identify specific words that their teammates would draw. On their turn, a team had to move a piece on the game board that was formed using a sequence of squares. The goal was to be the first team to reach the last space on the board.
Who doesn’t remember the Super Soaker? This powerful pressurized gun was a favorite for many young boys and girls. Even Michael Jackson considered the Super Soaker to be one of his favorite toys! And how could it not be? Safe, harmless fun awaited every summer day with this cool contraption.
How fast can you solve the Rubik’s Cube? Have you ever tried to solve one? If you haven’t, you should, that way you can see why this colorful little riddle box has sold over 350 million cubes worldwide and it is still considered to be one of the world’s best-selling toys.
The Pogo Ball saw huge mainstream success, even with adults, in the ’80s. To play with it, one stands on the plastic platform, balancing one’s weight on the bottom portion of the rubber ball, and jump or hop around in the same manner as if using a pogo stick.
My Little Pony
This game was extremely popular in the ’80s due to its one of a kind concept. Instead of selling human shaped toys, the creators designed magical ponies. Players combed their hair, bought them lots of accessories, and built them little horse doll houses. They’ve recently made a comeback with people that call themselves “Bronies.” We’ll just leave it at that.
Strawberry Shortcake is a licensed character owned by American Greetings, originally used in greeting cards and expanded to include dolls, posters, and other products. The Strawberry Shortcake properties also include a toy line of the character’s friends and pets.
Popples is a series of fantasy characters created by Those Characters From Cleveland (TCFC), a subsidiary company of American Greetings. Popples resemble brightly colored teddy bears or marsupials and have long tails with pom-poms on the tip. The stuffed animals became a huge hit with the children.
The Transformers Robot
Probably one of the coolest action figures ever. It was like buying two toys for the price of one! On the one hand, you got a robot, and the other hand you got whatever the robot turns into!
Mastermind Board Game
The Mastermind Board Game was designed to be played by two players. The first player was tasked to create a row of four colored pegs behind a screen. The second player would then be given nine chances to guess the combination created by the first player.
In the 1980s, only the National Benzole petrol stations in the United Kingdom offered a Smurf Figurine. For several years, this toy was the No.1 toy in the UK and a lot of people started collecting the Smurf figurines.
A popular gaming system in the early ’80s, Atari was a predecessor and eventual competitor to the original Nintendo. Consumer confidence eventually abandoned the system for both Nintendo and Sega.
Want to learn more about video game consoles? You have to read 25 Best Video Game Consoles of All Time!
Barbie and the Rockers
This doll line was created in the mid-1980s by Mattel and was added in the popular Jem doll line series which turned out to be a huge market success.
These ’80s toy is considered to be one of the best activity toys produced by Mattel. This toy allowed the player to create die-cast metal molds that resembled bug-like creations. The user would pour a liquid chemical substance called Plastigood that came in various colors into the mold which would then be heated to about 390 degrees.
The Easy-Bake Oven
Buyers responded well with this toy created by Kenner in 1963. People loved that this was a working toy oven. Other toys just made use of incandescent light bulb as the main heat source, but the “Easy-Bake-Oven” used real heating elements. The oven came with small round pans and packets of cake mix. Water was then added to the pan and mixed. After the cooking process, the cake would be pushed out using the slot in the other side of the toy.
First released in the market in 1982, it was made of plush materials and featured a worm body in pajamas that held a battery powered device which could be squeezed in order for the vinyl head to light up. Sadly, the toy was banned in 2005 for allegedly being “unsafe” for kids.
This game was inspired by clairvoyant individuals like the mother of the person who invented the functional component of the “Magic 8- Ball.” After several improvements to the toy the crystal ball became a huge success in the ’80s up until today. The toy has 20 faces and will answer positively, negatively, or will have a non-committal statement.
The ’80s was the decade where America started getting addicted to the shopping culture. It is no wonder that the game, “Mall Madness,” was received so well. An electronic version of this game was sold in 1989 and had undergone a redesign.
Mr. Potato Head
“Mr. Potato Head” is arguably one of the most famous toys of the ’80s and beyond. Via a plastic potato, players creatively flexible by utilizing plastic parts that can be attached to the main body of the potato. Due to its immense popularity, the creators also baked “Mrs. Potato Head” and accessories like a car and boat trailer.
Nintendo Game Boy
Almost every child in the ’80s and ’90s had their own “Nintendo Game Boy.” It was the start of an amazing technological revolution that ushered a new era of toy gadgets. It gave us a glimpse of the future of gaming consoles and handheld devices.
It’s not hard to understand why this toy became an instant hit in the ’80s. Aside from providing comfort as a pillow, it also served as an immediate toy. The toys come with stuffed hands and feet attached. There were also designs of cats, dogs and other characters like Mr. Sandman, Punky Pillow, Mr. Thunderclap, Sweet Dreams, and Big Footsteps.
Tinkertoy Construction Set
This toy is ranked high on the list because it’s one of those toys that have inspired children to build wonderful creations with their imagination for generations. It did not sell well during its first run, but after a year the company was able to sell over a million sets.
Even in 2018, the “Magna Doodle” concept remains a top selling toy. It is a magnetic drawing board that allows the user to draw any kind of image they want using a magnetic stylus and a few magnetic shapes. This is perfect for children starting to learn how to write and draw. Instead of throwing away paper, the Magna Doodle allows children to write wild and free without waste.
This toy is highly popular because it can be used as a toy, a design item or a collectible knick-knack. It is an egg-shaped toy that when released, the gravitational force or torque brings the “Weeble” back into an upright position.
A game of wits and physical skill, “Jenga” is truly an iconic toy. The concept is simple. Players take turns removing a block from the bottom of the tower and then proceed to place it at the top of the tower in order to create a taller structure. Until the structure becomes unstable and collapses on the loser’s turn!
The Fashion Polly dolls made by Mattel were less than one inch tall and were made of hard plastic, but they inspired creativity and have allowed millions of children everywhere to create role playing games that boosted their communication skills.