It all started with a birthday party this past winter. My 8- and 6-year-old sons were invited to a pair of brothers’ combined birthday party. The party would be a Beyblade tournament, so the guests were invited to bring their “best” Beyblades and “Let It Rip!”.
It took a bit of research to learn that what my kids were going to play with were actually toys spun-off from a Japanese manga series adapted to Japanese television. My college roommate’s son had asked for a set for his birthday last year and I ordered what he wanted from Amazon and had it shipped. Megan explained to me the concept — customizable tops that have assorted attributes that compete in a battle arena. In a Beyblade battle more than one top launches into a stadium, and the last-top spinning is the winner. My sons didn’t have any, and between their Legos and Kung Zhu pets, we had too many other toys keeping my checkbook active.
For this birthday party, the boys’ mother said there were plenty of extra Beyblades to go around, and my boys were introduced during the party. They loved it! By the time they left, they were talking about which ones to buy first, which stadiums to buy, and which “attributes” each of the Beyblades had. They used some of their own money to buy their first Beyblade “battle tops” and stadiums. The average top is about $10, and the average a la carte stadium is also about $20.
Read more of Patricia Vollmer’s post on how these toys teach science over at GeekMom.