Holiday Hit List 2011

The goblins are now gone, and the elves are putting their finishing touches on a new batch of toys. Here at The Noise on Toys, our own little testing elves have had a tour of the workshop. Here’s what they say are the top and most noteworthy toys from over 500 new toys they play-tested this year.

Count 'n Crunch Cookie Monster (18m+, Hasbro)

Our kid-testers never tired of stuffing their favourite blue monster with cookies, and thought it hilarious when he burped and said excuse me. A very popular toy.

Full Review

Slide & Talk Smart Phone (2+, VTech)

Not only are there lots of activities to keep young minds busy, this phone is so realistic kids even stopped asking to play with the adults’ phones - parents loved that!

Full Review

Great Pretenders Spider/Bat Reversible Cape (3+, Creative Education of Canada)

Easy to get on and off; fun to play in; and a lot snazzier than a dish towel. Our testers loved how it flaps when they run; parents loved that it hides dirt and withstands so many adventures.

Full Review

uKloo Early Reader Treasure Hunt Game (4+, uKloo Kids Inc.)

A fast, and easy way for parents to set up treasure hunts. So much fun, our kid-testers didn’t even care if there was a “treat” at the end; it’s the hunt they loved – over and over again, all the while practicing simple word recognition.

Full Review


A great set-up! Kids love that the extra height makes the cars go really fast; parents love that the track is off the floor and out of the way.

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Connect 4 Launchers (5+, Hasbro)

You still have to get four in a row, and, you're still trying to block your opponent from doing the same, but in this version you're catapulting your pieces onto the board – both at the same time. Chaotic and fun!

Full Review

Opti-Art Ornaments (5+, Creativity for Kids)

Everything you need to make eight pretty pastel-coloured snowflake ornaments. Our testers especially loved the facetted plastic opti-art dome that made their artwork pop with holiday magic.

Full Review

Wild Horses (6+, Playroom Entertainment)

Easy to learn, quick playing, and it's good for the brain. Kids have to really look carefully to find the right horse, and it helps if you can remember which ones have already been played.

Full Review

Pop-Art Pixies Ice Chandelier (8+, Crayola)

Like the icy feathery swirls Jack Frost leaves on winter windows, this ink sends out crystalline patterns as it dries. The ice-like patterns look spectacular on the metallic paper discs, which showcase beautifully on the mobile.

Full Review

Stomple Board Game (8+, Spin Master Ltd.)

A very unique new game with intriguing strategic possibilities. And, it’s just plain fun to push the marbles through the board and hear them clunk and rattle around in the wooden storage below.

Full Review

Hedgehog Escape Brainteaser Puzzle (8+, Popular Playthings)

The unusual shape of the "nest" of hedgehog babies requires that you think a little differently about how to move it around. Our testers loved trying to avoid the weasels while rolling, flipping and turning the baby hedgehogs until they could “jump” the wall back to mother hedgehog.