For most people, our happiest Christmas memories occurred when we were children – waking up and running to the tree to open the bevy of presents underneath. And then – of course – getting to play with whatever toys we got until the sun went down.
Now that we’re adults, a lot of that excitement has been lost on us. A lot, but not all. In fact, we still find ourselves yearning for toys – both those that we had as kids and new ones that have come out recently. And if you know anyone like that in your life, you’ve come to the right place. The following list is a collection of toys both new and old that you can buy this holiday season as a gift for the big kid in your life.
The Key Armory
Everyone carries keys around with them on a daily basis. That doesn’t mean yours have to look like everybody else’s. Infuse your keys with some pop culture style thanks to the Key Armory. Whether you’re a fan of LoTR, Star Wars, Zelda, or Final Fantasy, you can find a key here that you’ll be proud to keep on your carabiner.
3D Skull Silicone Ice Mold
For enjoying whiskey, most aficionados agree that a sphere of ice beats out a handful of cubes any day. But why should an ice sphere be only an ice sphere, when it can instead be much cooler – like, say, a skull. These flexible silicone ice molds will let you turn regular water into skeleton heads, adding just a little bit of morbid style to your next dram of scotch.
Nerf Dog Tennis Ball Blaster
Few things are as blissfully simple as playing fetch with your dog. But instead of risking blowing out your shoulder, you can pick up this Nerf gun that will send a tennis ball sailing up to 20 feet in the air – giving your pup a harder target to run for and saving you the risk. You can even pick up the ball hands-free, allowing you to avoid getting slobber all over your fingers.
The Fidget Cube
While the fidget spinner fad has thankfully died off, there are still plenty of benefits to be had from the act of fidgeting. If you or someone you know could benefit from the mindless act of fidgeting (studies show it helps with focus), then you’ll want to check out the Fidget Cube. It’s far less obnoxious than spinners, has 6 sides offering a different kind of fidgeting on each, and it actually looks good enough to keep at your desk.
BittBoy Retro Handheld Gaming Console
To this day, Nintendo’s Gameboy is widely considered to be the greatest handheld console of all time. The BittBoy takes all of the great thing about its style, pares it down a bit smaller, and adds in loads of modern technology – allowing you to play games that were previously only found on larger plug-and-play home consoles. If you know anyone that appreciates good retro gaming, you can’t go wrong with this one.
.30 Caliber Mini Cannon
While we’d certainly not encourage anyone to use this at their place of work, the .30 Caliber Mini Cannon in a very fun little desktop-sized ballistic toy. It operates just like an old school full-sized cannon, but at just a fraction of the size. For those with an appreciation of firearms, oddities, and perhaps a bit of war history mixed in, this is an excellent gift. You might even find that it’s small enough to consider a stocking stuffer.
StatGear Pocket Samurai Titanium Knife
Measuring up at less than 5 inches in length, this minuscule samurai sword is more than just a neat tchotchke. It’s actually an incredibly tough, durable, and useful EDC keychain knife. With a blade made from 440C stainless steel and a frame lock titanium handle, this miniature katana is equal parts everyday carry miracle and interestingly styled keychain addition.
Slot car racing is very cool, but its also a little old hat. Anki Overdrive takes everything that’s great about it and blitzes it into modernity with up-to-date tech. And not only does this kit let you race your friends and/or family around a build-able track, but you can even use virtual weaponry to sabotage your fellow racers.
LEGO NASA Apollo Saturn V Set
At a scale of approximately 1:110, this meter-tall lego kit is a loving recreation of the Apollo Saturn V rocket sent to the moon by NASA decades ago. It’s a challenging build – clocking in at 1,900 pieces – but it’s a must-have gift for fans of LEGO building blocks and space travel.
Sphero R2-D2 App-Controlled Droid
Probably the most iconic character from the Star Wars franchise, R2D2 is a long-time fan favorite. And now you can own a little astromech droid of your own, with Sphero’s loving smartphone-controlled recreation of the little robot. It features authentic lights and sounds and can even run in a self-propelled mode, if you want the most authentic droid experience.
BRNLY SlingPop Pocket Slingshot
For the Dennis the Menace and/or Bart Simpson in all of us, there’s nothing quite as special as the classic slingshot. This reimagining of that clever and useful tool is a much more grown-up version – featuring an American-made machined aluminum body with a built-in bottle opener – but it still captures the same childlike wonderment found in the old wooden ones so many of us had growing up.
Justice League Ultimate RC Batmobile
Say what you will about the DC films that have come out in the recent past, but one thing that will never lose its cool is the Batmobile. And while most of us aren’t playboy billionaire vigilantes who can afford such a vehicle, you can still find similar enjoyment in this R/C version. It even features authentic lights, sounds, and emits smoke from the pipes. As far as toys go, it doesn’t get much cooler than this.
Analogue Super NT Retro Gaming Console
Nobody does retro consoles quite as well as the folks at Analogue. And now they’ve turned their talents to recreating a long-time fan favorite: the Super Nintendo Entertainment System. With the ability to play literally thousands of game cartridges, this HDMI compatible console also features a wireless 8bitdo controller to match.
Star Wars: Jedi Challenges
Until space travel becomes commonplace and someone figures out how to build an actual lightsaber, we’re going to have to relegate our Star Wars fantasies to things like this virtual reality kit. Dubbed Jedi Challenges, this set includes everything you need to augment reality and live out your dreams of being a Jedi. With it, you can choose to duel Sith Lords, play Holochess, or even test your skills as a galactic military strategist.
JL Customs Nerf Guns
Nerf guns are some of the best toys of all time. Our one complaint: their bright colors don’t always look very cool. These custom recreations from JL Customs, however, feature much more aggressive styling – with some even looking like real firearms. In fact, you’ll probably want to make sure you play with these foam dart shooters in the safety of your own home.
DJI Spark Drone
Their smallest and most accessible drone ever, the DJI Spark is still one of the best out-of-the-box remote-controlled flyers of all time. It features airtime of up to 16 minutes, a speed of up to 31 miles per hour, and an onboard camera that can shoot HD footage. You can even use gesture controls to fly it around.
Berg Toys Compact Jeep Adventure
It’s a little bit of a stretch to say that this pedal-powered Jeep is ready for adult-usage, but it’s an excellent gift for anyone with kids. It features a swing-axle for off-road driving, a powder coated steel tubing construction, and a brake-forward-reverse system for backward pedaling.
Traxxas RC Land Rover Defender
Land Rover’s Defender is one of the greatest vehicles ever to grace this Earth. And this R/C recreation oozes the same kind of cool, just in a much smaller and more attainable package. It features innovative portal axles which offers incredible ground clearance and nearly entirely avoids chassis torque twist, has locking differentials, and even features waterproof electronics. Yes, all that in a small remote-controlled car.
2nd Gen Boosted Board
Pushing your skateboard is looking like a thing of the past, thanks to things like the Boosted Board. This electric-propelled stand-up 4-wheel vehicle has a top speed of up to 22 miles per hour, a range of 7 miles, and can even climb a 25% grade. Truly, this skateboard is top notch.
Love Hulten Cary42 Portable Retro Arcade
Though this device looks like a smart wooden briefcase on the outside, within you’ll find a fully-functional standalone 2-player retro arcade. It also comes with 100 pre-loaded games, but can support up to 10,000 via its onboard emulators. This might be the most beautiful portable console of all time, but its limited to just 50 examples, so act fast.
Best Board Games For Grown-Ups
For those times when playing a game involves more than just one person, you can always turn to our list of the best board games for adults.