Well-chosen, sturdy, impeccably-crafted toys and games — such as Blokus Trigon, pictured at left — often (almost always) repay their purchase price many times over. A toy that fits these criteria is one that children tend to return to, time and again, because it lends itself to a growth of experience and understanding.
Cheap junk can be had almost anywhere. As a consumer, you don’t have to look hard to find sloppy, uninformed, and uninterested service from sales staff — that’s everywhere too. Independent toy stores sell good toys. We want to. We have to. It’s why we exist. Here’s a quote from the Hartford Courant:
“… For discount marketers like Wal-Mart, Target and Kmart, “toys are typically used as loss leaders to get people into the store.”
“They can afford to sell toys at cost as a means of driving people into the stores to buy other stuff,” (Richard Gottlieb, an industry expert) said.
But while you’re shopping for toys, don’t forget to visit local independent toy stores, said Kathleen McHugh, president of the American Specialty Toy Retailing Association.
“It’s untrue that because they’re independent toy stores they’re expensive. They have plenty of toys and games under $20,” McHugh said. “You can buy a lot of inexpensive toys and put them under the tree and in an hour the kids won’t pick them up again.
“Focus on the best you can buy for the money, toys that are going to give your children hours and hours of play value.
“It’s not about flashy boxes or razzmatazz, it’s about the value that toys have for children. A few really good, well-chosen toys provide hours and hours of play value for children.” “
And that’s advice that you can take to the bank.