Many folks don’t know there is a difference between “remote controlled” and “radio and remote controlled.” I mean honestly, RC is RC. So here they are, the Top Ten Bestselling Radio and Remote Controlled Toys for 2009.
10. Tyco R/C Stunt Psycho Vehicle – Red:
To start with we have an RC car from Tyco (“That’s how you spell “R/C!”). Putting the name “Psycho” in the title of your toy is typically a good idea unless it’s a Barbie (though I’d love to see “Psycho Barbie” in the near future). The Stunt Psycho is pretty simple with two wing-like things on the top that allow you to pop the car onto its back tires and ride around, or flip over and drive upside down while bouncing like a low-rider car. Also, the big wheels help the car hop small obstacles without any problem.
9. Hot Wheels RC Ford F-150 Blue:
Kids like trucks. Ford likes money. So kids and Fords are just a natural fit. The Hot Wheels RC Ford F-150 is a standard RC car that drives around and makes the cool “RC car noise” whenever the wheels spin. You can roll it over most terrains, though it works best on smooth surfaces. No tricks or anything, but it makes for a good remote controlled truck to dink around with.
8. Air Hogs Laser Micro Zero Gravity – Yellow:
And just like that we’ve hit all three primary colors. The Tyco was red, the Ford F-150 was blue, but now Air Hogs surfaces with a yellow model of their Laser Micro Zero Gravity Car. I don’t know what it is about Air Hogs, but the company doesn’t like to follow the rules nature set up, such as “cars can’t climb walls or follow lasers.” Well the Laser Micro yada yada does both of those things. You place it on a wall and it follows the laser as you shine it around. It’s pretty cool is what it is, and for under $40 for something that defies gravity, how can you say no?
7. Spinmaster Micro RC Terrain Titans Hot Shot Red:
So the Spinmaster Micro RC Terrain Titan is small. Very small. We’re talking smaller-than-palm-sized small here. But it’s got an awful lot of zip to it. It also costs a whopping $9.99, so you don’t have to dig too deep to snag one of these for your kids. I watched a review of the Terrain Titan as it ramped over crayons, flying discs, books, and calculators, as well as ride a miniature skateboard. It’s a nice little gift, but be careful when taking it out of the box since it has real suspension that can break pretty easily if you tug too hard.
6. MATCHBOX Rocky the Robot Truck – Deluxe Rocky:
Trucks are cool. Robots are cool. Robot trucks are terrifying, but somehow kind of cool as well. MATCHBOX has a truck named Rocky and this truck can apparently say 80 different phrases and dance. Hold on, I couldn’t have just written that a truck dances. Mm-hm, yes, okay, yeah, the truck dances. It asks your child if it feels like dancing and then groves to its own beat. Rocky isn’t so much remote controlled as he (ooh, that’s weird, let’s call it “it”) is able to respond to various things your child does to it, such as back it up, have it dump blocks, or carry too much weight (it’ll complain when it feels overworked). The commercials show a little boy having a blast until his father joins in dancing with the truck. I assume the commercial cuts out right before Child Services are called in to the scene.
5. Air Hogs Switchblade – Red & Grey 27.195 MHz.:
The cool thing about the AirHog Switchblade models are their ability to hover up into the air from takeoff looking like a UFO and then morph into a flight mode. That’s pretty darn cool, even for toys. A morphing helicopter? I’d like to see more toys that morph with a flick of a button.
4. Air Hogs Switchblade – Black & Yellow 27.045 MHz.:
Didn’t I just recover the Switchblade? Yeah, they’re popular alright, but the black & yellow color scheme seems to be the more popular of the two. Hey while you’re here, I always thought it was odd for companies not to have at least half a dozen different colors for their products. Do they focus group the item and determine that kids will only like a transforming helicopter thing if it consists of the color combinations of black & yellow or red & grey? Why not blue & white? And if such a color scheme exists, why don’t people like it that much? Just things to think about. Oh, back to more toys.
3. Spinmaster Micro RC Terrain Titans Hornet Black:
Hey, I already did these too! Somehow black is more popular than red, so here it is, the Spinmaster Micro RC Terrain Titan in HORNET BLACK! So there are six different colors of these Terrain Titans but only four frequencies for them to run off of (A-D). If you buy two, don’t buy two of the same color as they’ll have the same frequency and won’t work in the same area together. Strangely, there are two instances where a frequency overlaps with two different cars, but Spinmaster doesn’t tell you exactly which one overlaps with which. I’d say the safe bet is to purchase only the first four colors as shown on the back of the box as those probably go A through D before overlapping. Of course, that’s just me speculating.
2. Playskool Tonka Bounce Back Racer (Band B) 49 MHz:
Kids are not the most skilled when it comes to hand-eye coordination right off the bat. They get better over time, but there’s a period of “kinda sucking” when it comes to controlling things with any sort of precision. Playskool saw this fact and made the Tonka Bounce Back Racer, a remote controlled car that has huge tires that bounce off things and allow the car to flip over and continue driving. This means your child won’t have to run over and flip the car back over so that it can be driven again and thus, they learn no cause and effect for poor driving. Wait, was I trying to make a good point here? Oh right, it’s small and bounces around so that it doesn’t damage things. Also, it’s only $39.99 and the two sides mean it has two colors to choose from. That’s two colors for the price of one! What a deal!
1. Air Hogs Havoc Heli:
These just sell way too well for their own good. They’re miniature helicopters that fit into the palm of your hand and can be controlled by a child or a mildly hip adult. They’re a simple concept but they work perfectly, and at a price of just over $40 you aren’t losing too much. However, I’d recommend preparing for the inevitable rotor replacements. More on Air Hogs coming soon.