What Toys Were Popular In The 1980’s

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The ’80s was a great time for grew up. This was arguably one of the greatest decades in history to be a kid with an allowance burning a hole in your pocket, and a free afternoon to spend at a toy store of course. The world was simpler and a nice place back then. Playing with the toy was one of the great recreational issues for children and as well as for the adults too in some cases. That time was very primitive and colorful and it was full of inventions for science. Do you know who grew up in the ’80s almost everyone has a classic collection of toys? Here is some short information about 20 toys that were used to play back then in the ’80s. Let’s have a look!

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1. Atari

Atari What Toys Were Popular In The 1980’s

A very popular gaming system in the early ’80s responsible for gaming companies and grown up with this was an era. Unfortunately dying over with a hard competition with Nintendo and Sega.

2. Barbie and the Rockers

Barbie and the Rockers

On the name of daughter “Barbara”, Ruth handler had invented barbie doll in 1959 and introduced in American toy fair in new york city. A warm love was captured by the children for barbies and rockers was noticeable.

3. Retro Planet

Creepy Crawlers

In 1964, ‘Mattel’ has made this game and considered as a most active toy back then and also known as thingmaker. The kids were supposed to mold their own spiders and bugs out of plastic. Though this was known as a toxic game to play.

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4. Glo Worm

Glo Worm

It was in the market in 1982, created by Hasbro’s Playskool division. Glo worm was a stuffed toy for kids. There were batteries on the puffs to glow lights on the eyes of the toy and this toy was also named “unsafe” nowadays and got banned in 2005.

5. Magic 8 Ball

Magic 8 Ball

Magic 8 Ball is an easy way to answer a yes or no question with some interesting wording along with it! It is one of the popular toys that are still very popular. a Yes or No and the non-committal statement will lead you to the answers to the future. Isn’t it works like a bit astrology?

6. Magna Doodle

Magna Doodle

It is a top-selling toy even in 2019 for its consuming ability. This is a magnetic drawing toy, consisting of a drawing board, a magnetic stylus, and a few magnet shapes and for kids, this could be a perfect thing to start writing practice. Easily draw, magically erase and savings of papers keeps this toy on higher demand.

7. Mall Madness

Mall Madness

Are you a shopping maniac? Shopping culture in the ’80s was one of the big approaches in America. In 1988 Milton Bradley had introduced it to America. After a huge response, an electric version of this game was on board with a new design in 2004.

8. Mastermind Board Game

Mastermind Board Game

A code breaking game for to players invented in 1970 by Mordecai Meirowitz. A deduction game where two players take turns for a limited guess to hit the board. You need to guess the color of the hidden pegs to make a progress in mastermind. By using logic one has to deduce what pegs the opponent has hidden.

9. Mr. Potato Head

Mr. Potato Head

Mr. Potato head is a very famous toy with a potato head and some different components which can be arranged adding by different plastic parts and in a different shape. Invented in 1952 by  George Lerner. Due to its popularity, Mr. and  Mrs. Potato head had gone through television commercials at the beginning of 2000.

10. My Little Pony

My Little Pony

In the early ’80s, this hits as a popular toy line and also media franchise with targeting girls mainly. American toy company Hasbro has invented this by the author Bonnie Zacherle in 1982. Do you know how much it sold back at that time? One hundred fifty million ponies were sold due to its popularity.

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11. Nintendo Game Boy

Nintendo Game Boy

Who hadn’t his own Nintendo game boy in ’80s and ’90s?  Is an 8-bit handheld game developed and manufactured by Nintendo at 1989. This toy is too good to be true. Today a bunch of peoples keeps Gameboy as a kid and they have fond memories.

12. Pictionary


Pictionary is a word guessing game invented by Robert Angel and was first published in 1985 by Angel Games. This is a team game trying to identifying specific words from teammates. Achieving the last space as first team is the goal.

13. Pillow People

Pillow People

An interesting one, right? Rectangular shaped stuffed toys with hands and feet attached with bodies. First invented in 1986 by Penny Ekstein-Lieberman and got popularity on the mid-’80s with an income of 120 million dollars. Besides “Man” shaped pillow there are pets pillow lines such as cats and dogs.

14. Pogo Ball

Pogo Ball

Pogo ball also known as Lolo ball is a rubber boll locked into a structured plastic platform. It was not only popular to kids but also adults. To play with this one stand on the plastic platform and balance weights on the bottom and jump over with using of polo stick! In 1969 two peoples of Belgium named Van Der Cleyen and Ribbens have invented this.

15. Rubik’s Cube

Rubik’s Cube

Have you fast solving skills? Rubik’s cube normally known as the magic cube is a puzzle consisting of colored faces made of 26 colored blocks attached to a spindle in the center. The objective is being to rotate the blocks until each face of the cube is a single color. In 1974 Emo Rubik has invented this and it is the best selling toy all over the world.

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16. Smurfs


The Smurfs is a Belgian comic franchise which looks-alike small, blue and human-type creature first introduced in the 1980s. In the United Kingdom, this toy was in the no.1 chart for a long period and peoples used to have Smurfs as a collection.

17. Strawberry Shortcake

Strawberry Shortcake

Strawberry Shortcake is a cartoon character for using in greetings card mainly. This character is licensed to use with American Greetings and currently owned by Canadian children’s television company. various types of characters of these toys are available on market now for its huge popularity. This theme was introduced by Muriel Fahrion in 1979.

18. Super Soaker

Super Soaker

In every summer the demand for super soaker can nevertheless goes down. Its a recreational water gun with higher accuracy, power, and range than conventional sports pistols. It almost generated 1 billion in its total sales and you can assume the demand we suppose. Originally sold by Larami from the early ’90s.

19. The Transformers Robot

The Transformers Robot

This is one of the coolest toys ever because it could be turned into various forms. So don’t you think you have bought two things at only ones’ price? This robot was also the beginning of showing the era of technology at that time.

20. Weebles


How about to use a thing as a collectible knick-knack, a design item, and a toy! The versatile using of this toy made this too popular and high demandable. A Weebles object must have only one position in which it can achieve stable mechanical equilibrium.

Final Verdict

But one important thing that never goes out of style is the cool toys from the ’80s and ’90s that every kid back on that time just had to have. Many of them remain popular today, and some are worth a decent amount of money. So after having this article you can probably say that “everything that’s old is new again”.

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A journalist who won several awards, I have held the main editorial positions in The World Press and Pow Jones. A former student of literature, art study and art history with a deep knowledge of finance and business work, I explore global art markets and cultural analysis. My reviews of major museum and gallery openings have been published in major newspapers and media platforms around the world.

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