TOKYO – Drones, robots, yo-yos and board games were among thousands of items vying for attention on Thursday as Tokyo’s annual toy show opened its doors.
The event, considered a bellwether for the toy industry, was hosting 197 companies from all over the world and expecting to welcome over 160,000 people.
“The new kind of toy trending well on the market combines the digital with the traditional,” one of the organizers, Satoshi Yamashita, told EFE.
One of the popular games in Japan at present, “Sakebe! Tonton Voice-Controlled Sumo Game,” in which players control small sumo wrestlers with microphones, is an example of blending traditional concepts with new technology.
While traditional toy makers defend their corner of the market, technology has also been able to make its mark: Interactive robots, virtual reality and drones made way in the industry last year, making up 800 billion yen ($7.3 billion), according to the Japan Toy Association.
A marketing director from United States company Diverse Marketing, Steve Starobinsky, said he was visiting the fair in search of new ideas and toys that could slot into the American market.
The International Tokyo Toy Show runs from June 7-10.