Every year industry group The Toy Foundation unveils its annual Toy of the Year Awards (see the 22nd annual award winners here) and this week it announced the finalists for the 23rd annual honors, this time representing the past two years in 17 categories, with the final awards coming in November.  Altogether that’s 122 toys vying for top honors, selected from more than 600 nominees by a panel of judges comprising play experts, journalists, academics, retailers, and other toy authorities, and now it’s up to the voters to determine the winners.  All are invited to visit ToyAwards.org to vote for their favorites in each category through September 2, 2022.

Links, links, and more links… check out the full slate of finalists:

ACTION FIGURE OF THE YEAR

Toys that represent a person or fictional character intended for active, imaginative, and narrative-based play.

COLLECTIBLE OF THE YEAR

Toys that compose a set and can be collected in multiples, including novelty playthings, miniature versions of existing lines, licensed collectibles, etc.

CONSTRUCTION TOY OF THE YEAR

Toys that include building as the primary play pattern.

CREATIVE TOY OF THE YEAR

Toys that allow kids to build and/or make items that are unique to them.

DOLL OF THE YEAR

Toys that include baby, toddler, and fashion dolls.

GAME OF THE YEAR

Games for families and children (ages 0-14), including board, card, electronic, or other physical game formats and puzzles. Exclusive of video or app games.

GROWN-UP TOY OF THE YEAR

Toys and games developed primarily for grown-ups/kidults, including party games, board games, collectibles, arts and crafts, and more. These toys are often fueled by fandoms, social media, and adult humor and are not “adult toys” nor sexual in nature.

INFANT/TODDLER TOY OF THE YEAR

Toys developed for ages 0-3 (0-18 months infant/18 months-3 years toddler).

LICENSE OF THE YEAR

Character or property that has had success spreading its brand through the development and merchandising of products developed from the intellectual property.

OUTDOOR TOY OF THE YEAR

Toys designed for outdoor play, excluding ride-ons.

PLAYSET OF THE YEAR

Toys designed to work together to enact some action or event, including characters and role play.

PLUSH TOY OF THE YEAR

Toys made of fabric and stuffed with cotton or a similar filling, including toys with interactive or electronic features.

PRESCHOOL TOY OF THE YEAR

Toys developed for ages 3-5.

RIDE-ON TOY OF THE YEAR

Toys designed to be ridden outdoors, such as motorized vehicles, bicycles, scooters, wagons, etc.

SPECIALTY TOY OF THE YEAR

Toys from manufacturers that primarily do business through independent retailers (neighborhood toy stores, museum shops, vacation destinations and similar venues) or in limited quantities online.

STEAM TOY OF THE YEAR

Toys that encourage kids to develop, strengthen and integrate skills across science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics.

VEHICLE OF THE YEAR

Toy cars, trucks, trains, and other vehicles in all scales, including R/C vehicles.

For more information about the Toy of the Year Awards voting and selection process, visit ToyAwards.org.  Learn more about The Toy Foundation at its website here.

C.J. Bunce / Editor / borg