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Updated: 9 weeks 3 days ago

G.I. Joe “Action Battle Toys”

19 September, 2017 - 02:37
This 1984 Ben Franklin advertisement should make all of the G.I. Joe fans happy. Look at those prices! $16.88 for a Skystriker. $10.97 for the APC. Wait. What is a “Twin Battle Fun” when it comes to G.I. Joe toys of the eighties. Based on the prices and images, I think they wanted to list the Fang there, but “Twin... Read more →
Categories: Designer Toys, Toy News

Mego Dukes of Hazzard Action Figures

19 September, 2017 - 02:22
December 2, 1981. The Dukes of Hazzard television show was quite popular there for a time in the early eighties, with millions of people across the U.S. watching each week. And it didn’t take toymakers long to capitalize on the success of the series, with even Mego getting into the fun with a series of Dukes of Hazzard action figures... Read more →
Categories: Designer Toys, Toy News

“He’d like to have a few words with you.”

19 September, 2017 - 01:45
This advertisement for the Star Wars Episode 1 action figures comes from the January 2000 issue of ToyFare magazine, showing us just how hard Hasbro was trying to sell a line of unpopular action figures. The flooded shelves of 1999 and 2000 were not forgotten in 2002, as this 2002 newspaper article proves. Still, it is nice to see that... Read more →
Categories: Designer Toys, Toy News

1997 BattleTech CCG Game FAQ

19 September, 2017 - 00:30
As a Wizards of the Coast trading card game, the old BattleTech CCG managed to get a little space in different issues of the Duelist magazine*, including a small number of articles dedicated to introducing the game, introducing expansions, and offering up card lists. And in those early days of the internet, Wizards of the Coast also took to publishing... Read more →
Categories: Designer Toys, Toy News

ReSaurus MechWarrior (BattleTech) Toys in ToyFare Magazine in 2001

18 September, 2017 - 02:55
As near as I can determine, the ReSaurus MechWarrior toys shown below (from the June 2001 issue of ToyFare magazine) were never produced. There’s a page at Raving Toy Maniac with pics and some info, as well as this post with some other pics, but all signs point to these toys never existing for sale. That seriously sucks, because... Read more →
Categories: Designer Toys, Toy News

Betty Debnam’s “The Toy Story” in 1981

18 September, 2017 - 02:04
You could read dozens of books about toys, scan through hundreds of old magazines, and participate in the sale of toys and games at various toy shows around the world each year to learn about the sales cycle and process of making and selling toys. Or, if you don’t have that kind of time, you could always check out this... Read more →
Categories: Designer Toys, Toy News

“Super Holiday Toy Collectors’ Guide!”

18 September, 2017 - 01:58
Here’s a 1997 advertisement for ToyFare magazine (find at*) that makes me question what was happening in the world of action figures when this was new. Clearly, something was happening with Kenner’s Total Justice action figure line when this was new, but just what else does issue #6 of ToyFare hold inside?
Categories: Designer Toys, Toy News

TSR Dice Commander’s Manual 1997 Advertisement

18 September, 2017 - 00:26
I think it is safe to say that TSR’s Dragon Dice collectible dice game of the nineties (find at*) was the most popular game in the collectible dice game class when it was new, and it comes as no surprise that TSR took their experience and created a book for the game. What is surprising, though, is what the... Read more →
Categories: Designer Toys, Toy News

Star Wars 15% to 30% Off at JCPenny in 1984

17 September, 2017 - 06:06
This ad block comes from a 1984 JCPenny newspaper advertisement that I first posted in 2015. I was searching for a Care Bears newspaper advertisement when I ran across this Star Wars action figure sale, and after realizing that I hadn’t zoomed in on and shared just the Kenner Star Wars portion of the ad, I decided to fix that... Read more →
Categories: Designer Toys, Toy News

Knickerbocker’s Dukes of Hazzard Wrist Racer in 1981

17 September, 2017 - 02:52
We’ve seen newspaper ads for the Dukes of Hazzard Wrist Racer toy a few times before (here and here), so today’s ad from Walmart in 1981 doesn’t exactly offer up anything new. Still, each time I stumble across an ad for the Wrist Racers I find myself asking: Just how big was this line, and has anyone attempted to create... Read more →
Categories: Designer Toys, Toy News

2002 Moore Action Collectibles X-Files Action Figure Advertisement

17 September, 2017 - 01:20
If you run a search of X-Files action figures on*) you will find several figures for sale, but none produced by Moore Action Collectibles. Despite the below advertisement from 2002 (from an issue of ToyFare magazine), the figures were never produced for sale. has a thread on the line, and a bit of searching online ran across this... Read more →
Categories: Designer Toys, Toy News

Shadowrun: The Trading Card Game “Size Matters” Advertisement

17 September, 2017 - 00:09
Coming late to the party, Fasa’s Shadowrun CCG (find at*) was slightly too late to capitalize on the popularity of collectible card games in the nineties. And too bad, because the BattleTech CCG — produced by Wizards of the Coast under license from Fasa — was incredible, and the Shadowrun brand was so strong in the mid-nineties that if... Read more →
Categories: Designer Toys, Toy News

1993 Marvel Masterpieces from SkyBox

11 August, 2017 - 05:05
The 1993 Marvel Masterpieces trading cards by SkyBox (find at*) is a set from a different time, and this advertisement from Hero Illustrated shows what was considered to be some of the best superhero painted art of the early nineties. At the time, the artwork in these types of card sets always looked impressive, but now I can see... Read more →
Categories: Designer Toys, Toy News

“Squarbles. Square Marbles. Coming Soon From Hasbro.”

11 August, 2017 - 02:47
I wish I had been in the meeting where Hasbro gave the green light to Squarbles. I have no idea how the discussions could have gone when someone said “marbles should be square,” but I bet the marketing meetings for the Squarbles product line would have been fascinating to watch. Advertising the new product in G.I. Joe magazine was a... Read more →
Categories: Designer Toys, Toy News

Ewok Village and Star Wars Action Figures

11 August, 2017 - 02:24
Last weekend’s Fang G.I. Joe newspaper ad also included more potential material for a new book of Star Wars ads in the form of a blend of 1983, 1978, and 1989 Star Wars toys all in one block. You don’t often see Obi-Wan, Luke (X-Wing Pilot), and the Ewok Village playset all in one place, but that’s exactly what Playland... Read more →
Categories: Designer Toys, Toy News

More Photos of A Galaxy of Action Figure Savings

11 August, 2017 - 02:08
My latest book project closes on Kickstarter today — Kickstarter page — just as the copies of the previous book, A Galaxy of Action Figure Savings, continues to reach the supporters of that project. I am loving the pics that are being posted online, especially this shot showing five of my books all neatly together and ready to be read.... Read more →
Categories: Designer Toys, Toy News

Chuck Norris Karate Kommandos Action Figures in 1986

10 August, 2017 - 03:00
Kenner’s series of Chuck Norris Karate Kommandos action figures, created in support of the short-lived animated series, reached stores in 1986, and this Albertsons newspaper ad from that year shows us that kids were paying $5/figure if they wanted the toys. That price tag aligns nicely with some of the other Chuck Norris ads we’ve seen (here and here), and... Read more →
Categories: Designer Toys, Toy News

“Who puts the future in your hands?”

10 August, 2017 - 02:52
We follow up yesterday’s Robotix newspaper ad with this full-page advertisement from G.I. Joe magazine. Milton Bradley’s Robotix strikes the nostalgia chord again, making every child of the eighties instantly remember just how awesome this toy looked in the Robotix television commercial. Build and control your own robots? What kid wouldn’t want this toy?
Categories: Designer Toys, Toy News

G.I. Joe Ground Attack Jet at Walmart in 1985

10 August, 2017 - 02:43
November 28, 1985. The Kickstarter project for my new book of G.I. Joe newspaper ads closes tomorrow, so it is fitting that I run across this 1985 Walmart advertisement featuring the Cobra Rattler. And yes, the new book definitely includes a two-page spread showing the Rattler as it was advertised to us kids back in the eighties. How could I... Read more →
Categories: Designer Toys, Toy News

Review – Transformers: Titans Return Autobot Clones

9 August, 2017 - 17:47
Just in case I haven’t made it clear, the Transformers: Titans Return toyline (find at*) is my favorite official Transformers series of toys in a long time. Hasbro has done an incredible job on these toys, and I continue to snatch up as many of the different releases as I can. There have been very few that I didn’t... Read more →
Categories: Designer Toys, Toy News
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