The Tonka Rumblin' Chuck is an interactive companion designed for kids ages 3 and up, and if you've seen any of the commercials around children's programming this holiday season, you've probably seen this guy, so we're including him in our 2010 Holiday Gift Guide. This cheerful electronic truck aims to captivate your child with more than 50 sounds and phrases. In addition, Chuck features several fun animations: he'll wiggle, pop wheelies, and can even dump the load he's carrying. Rumblin' Chuck also includes an accompanying storybook, Friends for the Long Haul, which promotes a positive message about the value of friends and having fun. You can pick him up from Amazon for $37.57, which is 16% off the normal price.
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When Nintendo announced Wii Sports Resort at E3 a couple years back, it was in conjunction with the Wii Motion Plus add-on, a Wii Remote attachment that sent much more precise data about how you were moving the remote to the Wii console. It took them a while, but now you can finally ditch that dongle and go with a Wii Remote Plus controller instead. It's the same Wii Remote that you know and (maybe) love, but with the Motion Plus technology built-in, and that's worthy enough of being included in our 2010 Holiday Gift Guide. You can get them from Amazon for $38.99, a 3% savings.
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As much as we hate to admit it, Justin Bieber is all the rage right now, and the new Bieber singing dolls are going to be one of the hottest sellers this holiday season, so we've gotta include it in our 2010 Holiday Gift Guide. Currently available for pre-order, if you check Amazon, you'll find ridiculously high resale prices, which we'd recommend you stay away from. Instead, go with Target. They've got the whole collection of the Bieber dolls for $25.99 each. They'll ship on December 12, which gives plenty of time to arrive--just make sure you purchase soon, because they'll sell out for sure.
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It's no secret that Toy Story 3 was one of the biggest animated films of all time, and it's certainly good enough to sit in your collection as well. That's why we've added it to our 2010 Holiday Gift Guide. The Blu-ray combo pack offers the best bang for your buck, since it packs in a copy of the film on Blu-ray, a second Blu-ray disc with special features, another copy of the film on a standard DVD, and finally, a digital copy of Toy Story 3. Basically, this means you get the superb copy for your home theater, the DVD for use in computers or in the car, and the digital copy to watch on computers and portable devices. Even better, while this combo pack normally sells for $45.99, Amazon has it for $24.99, a 46% savings, and they also throw in a $4 credit for Amazon Video on Demand as well. This is a great gift for kids and families alike.
Be sure to check out other Amazon Blu-ray specials.
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Microsoft's been hyping up Kinect for over a year now, and the motion sensing Xbox peripheral has finally arrived. Our verdict? We love it, and it feels like the future. If you know anyone with an Xbox 360 console who doesn't have Kinect, then we'd recommend putting this one on your gift list. The Kinect sensor costs $149.99, and includes Kinect Adventures, a disc full of mini-games that let you try out a bunch of Kinect's features. You can also do video chat with other Kinect users and Windows Live users as well, and you get voice control over your Xbox 360. Seriously, this is the video game accessory to have this holiday season--especially during your holiday parties with friends and family around.
Aside from the sensor itself, here are a few Kinect games that we think are worth picking up as well:
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Here’s one that the kids are sure to love - Kota the Triceratops is a rideable dinosaur. Did you catch that? A life-sized baby dinosaur to be exact, Kota is 40-inches long, and has a spring-loaded seat and handle. He also sports a smile on his face, which should mean that children won’t be scared of him. Kota has 11 sensores, so it reacts intelligently to sound as well as touch. He will react by turning his head, tail, horns, or even by roaring. You can also feed him some leaves, which will cause the dino to make a munching sound. The best part? Kota sells for $299 - but Amazon is currently selling him for just $150 - that is 50% off! Better hurry though, no telling how long that deal will last.
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Growing up the way I did - barely getting by, fully understanding what hard times meant, and dealing with some messed up family stuff - we never really made Christmas a big deal. At least, it never really was to me. For example, one year we couldn’t afford a Christmas tree (but when we did, we kept that thing for like a decade), my mom made us get some fallen twigs outside our apartment and she delicately wrapped them up in tin foil. We put it in a green vase and I think my sister actually tried decorating it by coloring the tin foil red and green. Ah, youth. Well, I couldn’t totally blame her for her attempts to make something bad into something good, afterall, she had a perm and actually thought it looked cool. But, heck, it was the mid-80s, so the poor choice made by my nine-year-old sibling could be forgiven in retrospect.
In all honesty, the last Christmas I remembered before this particular one I’m about to tell you about when I was eleven, was when I was five. I got a whole bunch of Micronauts and this huge plastic Spider-Man doll that had a grappling hook, which was supposedly a web that he could “climb.” Mind you, I don’t blame my parents for any of this lack of remembering several years in between as they always did their best, God bless their hearts, and I’m glad my sister was always in the Christmas spirit, but I knew what was up. Okay sure, I was a Holden Caufield without knowing I was at the time, but whatever. I dealt with it. You couldn’t fool me, I tell ya.
But, this particular Christmas, I got fooled.
I was nine years old and I was a huge Star Wars fan. I was looking forward to Christmas like every kid and I hoped to get a ton of Star Wars stuff.
Christmas morning finally came and back then I would try to sneak out of bed at four or five in the morning so I could start playing. Sometimes I would get caught and I was told to go back to bed, but I always came out later after the coast was clear.
That Christmas I woke up early and quickly ran to the living room to start opening my presents. Every gift I opened was a toy. I don’t remember all of the stuff I got, but as I said it was all toys!
I went searching to the back of the tree to see if there was anything I missed and I found a present in the shape of a rectangle. This meant it was shirt box – clothes! Ugh. I tossed it back and buried it under some of my sibling’s presents.
Once again, Elmo is here to take over the holiday, causing parking lot brawls between otherwise-normal parents. Back in 1996, Tickle Me Elmo flew off store shelves. 12 years later, Elmo Live tells jokes, sings songs, plays games, and tells stories. Oh, and he still laughs too. The biggest change, though, is thatElmo’s mouth actually moves when he talks, along with the rest of his body. He also moves his arms, nods his head, stands up, sits down, among other things, all with a squeeze of his foot. I was at Target the other day, and almost every shopping cart with a kid in it had one, and at one moment, I literally heard 7 of these things going at once, simply due to the carts being in close proximity. This is one of the big toy gifts this year. Elmo Live sells for $65.99, but we found it on Amazon for 9% off, at $59.88.
Here’s the cool thing about Hasbro’s Lazer Tag Multiplayer Battle System - you can play and shoot each other in a group, running around as you normally would during a game of Laser Tag, which is always fun - or you can go it along with the television attachment, which turns the system into a one-player video game where you shoot the bad guys on the TV. The set includes the TV attachment, two tag guns, and two pump-action shot blast attachments. When your hit, a rumble pack makes it obvious, you’ve got a manual reload button to refill your shots after every ten that you fire, and a shield button. The set retails for $79.99, but we found it for 13% less on Amazon, at $69.96.
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