New Furby to terrorize stores this fall

Hasbro is reviving the 1990s toy with high-tech bells and whistles -- and a $60 price tag.

By Kim Peterson Aug 27, 2012 2:51PM
Credit: © Diane Bondareff/Invision for Hasbro/AP Photo
Caption: Jennifer Buxton plays a ‘Furby’ game at a Hasbro event in early August
Image File Name: Furby_082712_RM_300Is Hasbro's (HAS) new Furby the cutest thing ever or a harbinger of the apocalypse? Depends on whom you ask.

According to Gizmodo, which tested the $60 toy debuting next month, the new Furby is grotesque and horrible. "If you're not 5 years old and dumb, exposure to the Furby is about as bad as smallpox spores," Gizmodo's Sam Biddle writes."The gimmick quickly wears off, and it's then a constant, gnawing source of aggravation. It's like a device designed specifically to annoy."

But Biddle concedes that children "will probably love this more than any toy they've ever owned."

Hasbro is clearly hoping for a repeat of 1998, when Furby mania dominated the holiday season. Parents lined up at toy stores, desperate to nab the robotic fur ball. Classified newspaper ads offered them for hundreds of dollars.

The new Furby still looks like a bug-eyed, big-eared gremlin but with noticeable upgrades and a several high-tech enhancements (see this video for more). The biggest change is the glowing LCD eyes. It also works with translator apps that can tell you what those squawks and whistles really mean.

Hasbro needs a success with Furby 2.0 after its big gamble this year on the movie "Battleship." The adaptation of the company's long-running game was trashed by critics and unable to compete with "The Avengers," leading to disappointing box-office results for Hasbro and Universal Pictures.

Will Furby 2.0 become the king of the holiday season? The new version seems to have all the ingredients for success -- though its $60 price tag is definitely a deterrent in this economy.

Like it or not, this is the future of toys, Biddle writes. "The mushy minds of an entire generation will love this thing, and everything like it, until we're all just playing with holograms and battling our siblings with lethal lasers in front of Grandma," he adds.

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7Comments
Aug 27, 2012 3:24PM
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I like itwhen Furby bats its eyelashed at me.

Aug 27, 2012 3:35PM
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Good Lord! I still have nightmares just thinking about the original Furby my niece got for Christmas back when they first came out! The only way to shut the damned thing up was to remove the battery!
Aug 27, 2012 5:19PM
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the battleship movie bombed because they did everything sooo stupidly...ive played many a game of battleship,and not once did aliens ever attack....and if they did,they certainly wouldnt have attacked by sea....maybe by space....

 

as for the furby,i saw one furby last time they were around,i expect to see fewer this time

Aug 27, 2012 10:37PM
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Get ready, here comes the 90's again.
Aug 27, 2012 8:11PM
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