Toys from the 1990s

The ultimate list of toys and games from the 90s!

The super soaker was a "souped-up" water gun that was extremely popular throughout the nineties. If you were equipped with one of these in a water fight, the rest of your opponents were no match (especially if they were using one of those DIY water bottles with the small hole in the cap).

Originally launched in 1993, Beanie Babies were a line of soft toys that included characters such as "Legs the Frog" and "Squealer the Pig". Ty Warner Inc., the company that made them, deliberately made some of the characters scarce in order to increase their value as a collectable.

I can still remember the annoyingly over-the-top advert for "Bop It" (Youtube Link). Personally, I found this toy to be incredibly frustrating, but that's probably because I sucked at it.

Crocodile Dentist was first released back in 1990. The goal of the game was to extract teeth from the crocodile's mouth without touching the (hidden) sore tooth. The person who touched the sore tooth was deemed the loser as the crocodile's jaw came crashing down.

Tech Deck fingerboards were tiny working replicas of skateboards. Back when I was in school, a lot of us would have a few of these stashed away in our pencil cases so that we could play with them whenever the teacher wasn't looking.

The Furby was an electronic teddy bear that "learned" how to speak English as time went on. Within a year of its release, the toy sold over 27 million units. At one stage, there was such a demand for the toy that there were people selling it at auctions for over $300 dollars.

Although the Game Boy was released in the last 80s, it was very much a toy of the 1990s. I still remember playing the colourless version of Super Mario Land on this thing.

Jurassic Park figurines became all the rage after the first movie in the series was released in 1993 (It's hard to believe that over 20 years have passed).

It seems like laser pens / pointers just exploded in popularity overnight. They became such an issue in my school that they were immediately banned.


Pogs were another toy that seemed to appear overnight. At one stage, our school yard consisted entirely of students battling it out with one another. Each player would have a heavy plastic / metal "slammer", which was used to try and overturn the opponent's pogs. During the game, you usually got to keep what you overturned. I also remember how popular the "World Tour" pogs were.

Various makes and models of the "Easy Bake Oven" have been hitting shop floors for decades!

Do you remember catching a pink and green tennis ball with these velcro pads? I'm also pretty sure that they lost their "stickiness" over time :(

Pokemon cards became so popular that even people who didn't watch the show started to play with them. I remember having a large stack of these back in 1999.

Polly Pocket was a line of tiny dolls and accessories. A lot of the time, they came packaged in little cases that folded out into houses.

Who could forget the Transformer figurines? I have an extremely vague memory of owning the red dinosaur.

I loved the Sega Game Gear, even though the batteries didn't last too long. I remember playing The Terminator on this thing, which was loosely based on the first movie in the series. If my memory serves me correctly, the first level starts off with you, Kyle Reese, lobbing grenades at Skynet-controlled machines.

The Talkboy was a fictional toy in the movie Home Alone 2 until Tiger Electronics decided to make it a reality. Basically, it was a hand-held cassette recorder that allowed you to adjust the speed of playback.

The Tamagotchi was a hand-held virtual pet that you had to feed and water. If you were careless and failed to attend to its needs within a certain period of time, it would die, forcing you to start all over again. These would grow from an egg into a small pet that you had to take care of.

The 1990s saw the release of a new brand of Action Man, with characters such as Dr. X (shown below) making an appearance. There was also a character whose camouflage would appear if he was exposed to sunlight. The Dr. X character below had an arm that fired missiles. This particular generation of Action Men were first released back in 1993.

I know, I know... these weren't actually created in the 1990s. However, many kids that grew up in the 90s had one of these at some point or another.

G.I. Joe figurines were extremely popular throughout the 80s and the 90s.

Lego is another toy that has been around for decades. I remember having the ship below as a child.

Army Men with Parachutes!

The SEGA Genesis / Mega Drive had iconic games such as Sonic the Hedgehog, Streets of Rage, Aladdin and Mortal Kombat 3.

The Talkgirl was a pink version of the Talkboy.

The Tickle Me Elmo first appeared in 1996. Based on the character from the Muppet television show, it was a robotic toy that would laugh whenever you tickled it. The release of Tickle Me Elmo resulted in a bit of a frenzy, as shoppers caused stampedes in order to get their hands on it.

The Tyco rebound was a 4x4 remote control car that had two sides. If it flipped over, you could continue to drive it. I can still remember the sound that this thing made.

Believe it or not, the Spice Girls dolls sold millions. Later on, extra accessories and a concert stage were released as well.

Almost everyone had WWF figurines at some point in time. Below, you can see wrestlers such as The Big Boss Man and The Warrior.

Surprisingly enough, this toy version of Buzz Lightyear from Toy Story was actually pretty big and heavy. If my memory serves me correctly, the buttons on the front of his suit would play sound bytes from the movie.

The PlayStation 1 (PSX) was first released back in 1994. I still remember the demo CD that came with it (it had a walking dinosaur with cool graphics!). This console hosted classics such as Doom, Air Combat, Gran Turismo, Resident Evil, Tekken 3 and Final Fantasy VIII.

Barney the talking dinosaur sprung to fame in the early 1990s, much to the dismay of many people who found him to be insufferable. Throughout the decade, various toy versions of Barney were released.

Surely you remember the Echo Mike?

The Nintendo 64 was another popular gaming console that was released in the 1990s. Probably best known for having had the iconic game "GoldenEye 007", which had an extremely memorable multiplayer feature.

Yu-Gi-Oh! cards began to appear in 1996. They were based on a Japanese manga series about gaming.

The SEGA Dreamcast first appeared in 1998 and 1999. Unfortunately, SEGA discontinued their production of it back in 2001 after it decided that it wanted to focus its efforts on software.

Groovy Girls were a line of fashion dolls that were first released back in 1998.

Micro Machines were a brand of toy cars and trucks that were extremely popular throughout the eighties and the nineties. I remember having this Dodge Viper when I was a kid. It was probably my favourite one of all (I was a sucker for the cool looking stripes).

The special Holiday Barbie, which was released in 1990.

Batman and Robin figurines from 1995 (based on the movie with George Clooney).

The Talkback Dear Diary was a big hit with the girls.

Sky Dancers, which were released in 1994. They had foam wings and a string that you could pull if you wanted them to fly / spin off into the air.

The Mighty Max pocket toy!

Surely you remember slime, the green gooey plastic that left a strange rubbery smell on your hands!

Foam-based planes that would glide if you threw them up into the air!

Who could forget the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and their figurines.

The Fisher Price Great Adventures Castle, which was first released in 1994:

And finally, Stretch Armstrong!

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  1. Awesome retrospect! :D

    I still have fond memories of my Pogs...

  2. Do you still run the youtube comments blog anymore?