Get your old toybox out and get to rummaging around, hopefully, you don't find any of these monstrosities in there. The gaming community has been blossoming into the super-giant it now is for decades, looking back on the years there's been truckloads of terrible merchandise that came with this drastic change. From talking plumbers to pathetic plushes, we count down 25 of the lamest gaming toys that no kid actually wanted!
Every kid wants toys that represent their favorite stars from TV, cartoons, and video games. But nobody wants these toys in their collection! As a kid, I always wanted the toys that represented my favorite video game icons. Pokemon cards, Crash Bandicoot plushies, and Dragonball figures made up some of the toys I got my hands on. I was always lucky in the sense that my Father was a keen gamer, so the chance of me ending up with some of this trash was slim to none. We may not have had a lot of money, but we had gaming-sense.
Come with me on a journey through toy-land as we uncover some of the lamest excuses for toys ever made. Let this list stand as a bastion to what bad gaming toys look like. Show your mums, friends, and relatives. Even show that guy next to you on the bus! Let's try to stamp out poor gaming toys for good! Together we can lead the march for more authentic and hard-hitting memorabilia. If not for our children, then for our children's children.
23 Talking Mario & Luigi
The 90's Super Mario Bros film received mixed reviews across the board, most of them were in favor of axing the film. These talking Mario and Luigi figures come jam-packed with dull catchphrases, that, to be fair, use the same voice actors as the films. The figurines come from a time when talking toys were all the rage, but even in these times, the Mario and Luigi figures were still bad. Although they're now considered rare collector's items, it seems there's never been a better time to get rid of that middle-aged Mario figurine.
22 Bootleg Lara Croft
The Tombraider franchise is one that almost every gamer holds dear to their heart. As mentioned earlier in the Dragonball entry, bootleg figures were a common sight years ago. This particular piece takes our beloved low-poly Lara Croft and makes her look almost ill. For younger children who may have got their hands on this figure, my question is: how do you even know what Lara Croft is? (it's a 16+ age-rated game, at least!) For those of you a little bit older: why would you part with your hard-earned cash for this? For the creators of the toy: why? Just why?
21 Chaotic Crash Plush
This plush model of Crash Bandicoot belongs in the era of seaside arcades and grabber machines. When we would pour our hard-earned coins into a machine that, nine times out of ten, would grab the teddy you want with its claw and drop it just before the exit hole of the machine. Eventually, after you spent enough money to get fifty of the teddies, you would get your prize. In this case, the prize is a rather unsettling Crash plush. With little resemblance of the Naughty Dog Mascott. Overlooking the plush's stumpy body, one-word springs to mind: eyebrows!
20 Pokémon Frustration
Ah Frustration, we all remember this board game from when we were kids, right? You take all of your pieces and move them around the board until someone gets all their pieces home, thus becoming the winner. Apparently, some toy manufacturer thought it would be a good idea to combine the two childhood classics: Pokémon & Frustration. What we get as a result is a mediocre board game that didn't sell too well. Pokémon (or Pocket Monica?) Jump-Jupm chess doesn't even play as well as the original. Critics slammed it for having one less piece than it should per player and for been a direct rip-off of the original Frustration game.
19 Street Fighter / G.I JOE Cross-Over
This infamous combination has a reputation for having been one of the worst gaming toys ever made! Created by The Angry Spider, these hybrid figures come boxed as a G.I Joe whilst somewhat resembling their Street Fighter counterparts - they also come with a variety of weapons. Critics slammed the figures for not looking like their counterparts enough. Basically been a run-off-the-mill G.I Joe figure with a slight resemblance to your Street Fighter favorites. It was a decent idea with terrible execution.
18 Scary Sonic Plush
This scary looking Sonic plush has clearly spent too much time in the trash compactor, look how thin it is! Part of me wishes they'd have left this Sonic plush in there. I can't make out whether the body is worse than the face. The eyes are a terrible oval shape and hold no resemblance to Sonic's eyes, except the iris color.
A supersonic example for bad plushies everywhere.
His clothing raises more questions than he answers, what on earth is he wearing? I'll cut some slack to the plush in terms of hands and feet, the oversized look is actually quite adorable. Sadly, this plush looks closer to homemade than factory-fresh.
17 Virtual Boy
The efforts of Nintendo and Atari in the 80's to recreate both augmented and virtual reality in the home console is bewildering. Atari had its mind-control console and Nintendo had the Virtual Boy. People who played the virtual boy knocked it for giving them headaches and its strange multi-layered system made some users drowsy and feeling sick. It's no surprise that Nintendo dropped its efforts with the Virtual Boy. Now, in 2018, it finally feels like we are getting closer to making the console ideas of old a reality.
16 Bootleg Dragonball Z Figures
The term bootleg is given to any illegal re-distribution of goods. These few bootleg figures shown above belong to a vast pile of trash toys. This entry brings back memories of all those unlicensed toys been sold near you that would strike pain into the hearts of genuine fans. These figures are truly a work of non-art and deserve to be put in the deepest, darkest, toy box, far away from any human contact. The saddest part about bootleg figures is that they sell and therefore corrupt the image of the franchise.
15 Mc'Donalds' Happy Meal SEGA Games
These SEGA handheld Happy Meal toys go down as yet another lame gaming toy nobody really asked for. It's not that the initiative and overall idea wasn't good, but given the cheapness of McDonalds' toys, it was never going to work. These handhelds each come with a built-in game, each one different than the next.
Considered collector's items now, rest assured no-one is buying them for their functionality.
I remember these games as a kid, the Tails game was always my favorite. The games were restricted to LCD screens and never actually had much to them. Cheap games, easy to break, and nothing to them in terms of playability.
14 Lego Minecraft
Lego is one of the biggest money-makers in the toy industry, worldwide. It has a variety of products for sale from tons of different franchises. One confusing, yet obvious combination, belongs to the Minecraft Lego set. In a way, Minecraft is the modern day lego, only players play on their TVs rather than on their living room floors and purchase sets for cheap in the game. Why on earth we need a Lego set for something that ultimately trumps Lego is beyond me. I understand that in this modern day, fans will literally buy into anything that has their favorite franchise's sticker slapped on it, but this one just seems pure bizarre.
13 Alien Bull-Head
This bull-horned figurine variant of the classic Xenomorph from the Alien series has definitely got some issues. Many Alien toys have seen re-vamped varients that represent all manner of things.
This particular model was nicknamed the Alien-Toro.
Issues with color, shape, and design are frequent with this toy. As if the Xenomorph wasn't already scary enough, now it has horns and a miss-shaped body. Another eye-sore that should have never left the planning room.
12 Wind-Up Pac-Man
Check out this wind-up Pac-Man toy. Such treachery on a beloved gaming icon. This Pac-Man toy isn't a traditional wind-up, it's a genuine attempt at recreating the iconic Pac-Man character, as a wind-up toy. Many things about this particular toy will pierce your heart in the worst possible way. Aside from the hands and feet looking out of place, the top half of the head extends above the body, when it should only be half. Its eyes are also screaming poorly-made at me. My advice? save your money for a more authentic toy!
11 Tiger LCD Handheld Games
These cheap LCD screen handhelds came jam-packed with a whopping one game built in. Although the history books have seen many portable game console knock-off toys, these specific products really take the biscuit. Coming packed with a standard LCD display delivered limited graphical quality and the limited functionality meant that the handhelds didn't sell to well. Tiger Electronics were also the geniuses behind the Furby toys and Giga-Pets. This is the toy bought for the child whose parents don't understand gaming.
10 Mr. Potatohead Star Wars
Mr. Potatohead is without a shadow of a doubt one of Toy Story's biggest stars. Darth Vader is hands down one of, if not, the most iconic characters in Star Wars. Playskool decided it would be a great idea to slam them both together, how wrong they were. The limited functionality presented to users when they unbox the toy is something that all critiques have knocked it for. You're better off getting an older Mr Potatohead for his true purpose. Then again, the toy makes a nice looking paperweight or dust catcher.
Loved by many and loathed by others, the Tamagotchi is one of those toys that swept the globe. Many children owned or still own a Tamagotchi, but you're probably wondering how it makes it into this list? The Tamagotchi only had a handful of features to present players, they were cheaply made and programmed to deliver a representation of a somewhat 'pet owner' themed experience. Crazy stories of people neglecting their real-life responsibilities to keep a pre-programmed creature alive is the icing on the cake for this one.
8 TMNT Troll Dolls
These Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle Troll Dolls are some of the strangest crossovers on this list. Many continuity errors exist within this image, for a start, look at Raphael's weapons, why are they blue? The Troll Dolls made numerous appearances in the toy scene and this is but one of the many failed attempts at cross-over varients of the dolls. These items are now considered collector's items selling for nearly $20 each! Do we have a bad toy collector anywhere? This one is for you!
7 Prince Of Persia Lego Set
I've searched high and low looking for an entry into the list that depicts the worst Lego set ever made. This Prince of Persia Lego set has renowned infamy across the board from all the collectors and gamers alike.
The worst piece of the set has to be this Ostrich run.
Containing pathetically small amounts of content for a hefty price tag, this set was slammed hard for these reasons. Personally, what does it for most gamers is probably the fact that the sets are derived from the films rather than the games. Warrior Within Lego sets anyone?
6 Super Mario 3 Watch
Super Mario Bros. 3 was one of the last great games of the 80's, it was one of the NES generation's greatest hits. He had a place on the television screens of gamers across the planet. Which begs the question, why would we want to combine him with the time? This barely playable, low-grade combination is ambitious, but terrible, to play. It's amazing how the consoles of old are now been taken seriously in this generation. However, even the smartwatches today aren't the most reliable gaming platforms, yet. It's now considered a collector's item and sells for around $75.
5 Skylanders' Spyro Plush
The idea behind the Skylanders is great and something all gamers can praise. One thing we can't forgive is what they did to Spyro. They completely redesigned him and broke him, leaving a bad taste in many a gamers mouths. This particular plush is an example of what they did to him. Spyro may never be the same again, but we will always remember the days of PlayStation when Spyro was still great. How far the mighty have fallen from grace.
4 Lazarus Gomba
Oh dear... This one... I'm gonna need a minute. Okay, I don't know where this abomination came from? But I would gladly shake the hand of the person who puts it back in the toy box. This combination of Mario, Luigi, and the Gomba enemy of the Super Mario universe is going to stay with me long after this article. Clearly, the toy is deliberately restyled to look like a mix-match gone wrong. The Mario's M logo on Luigi's head, combined with the Gomba head as a makeshift body gives me a real case of discomfort as a gamer.
3 Knockoff Consoles
The vast waves upon waves of cheap and underpowered consoles have decreased as time passes us by. It seems now in the age ruled by Microsoft, Sony, and Nintendo, that we no longer have a place in our hearts for the Game Joy - not that we ever did. Gaming has risen as a culture in the past few decades and now nobody wants to buy a console they don't recognize. Let's raise a toast, to the Moms who decided the 3rd party systems were better to play - and to how wrong they were!
2 Mattel Halo's Fred
Mattel is one of the cornerstone video game-related toy manufacturers in the world, responsible for a wide variety of gaming toys that have been distributed across the globe. When Mattel decided to craft the Halo 5: Guardians figures, they seem to have overlooked some important details. The biggest one of these details being the size of Fred's Magnum, it's bigger than his head! Combining this with the paint smearing in sections leaves a bad taste in our mouths. It's a shame to see these small imperfect details because the figure is pretty much solid apart from this.
1 Angry Bird's Build-Your-Own Sets
Angry Birds is without a doubt one of the most groundbreaking and beloved mobile games on the market. That said, it strikes me as odd for a toy to be based upon building your own real-life Angry Bird scenarios.
The idea on paper is cool, but you can only get so far with it.
I can't think of any person who owns the free Angry Birds game on their mobile devices that would want to buy sets of Angry Birds toys to build it in real life. For a start, you can make your own Angry Birds levels online, and we all know the in-game experience will make less of a mess in the living room.