The ‘must have’ toy of Christmas 2010 was unveiled today – a full set of children’s body armour.
Armouron allows children to dress up as superheroes with interchangeable head and upper body protection.
The toy, which was voted product of the year at the 57th national London Toy Fair, is expected to fly off the shelves when it is launched next week at Hamley’s.
Armouron has been designed and produced by Bristol-based toy company Cod Steaks and will retail at just £30.
Managing director Sue Lipscombe revealed today that the suits will be displayed in the main window of Hamley’s toy store in London – Britain’s biggest toy shop.
She said: ”More than five million shoppers walk past that window in a month, so this really is a big boost for us.
”I was keen to come up with a toy that would encourage children to get away from computers and use their imaginations properly again.
”I wanted them to go out into their gardens, and for little boys in particular, playing ‘war’ has always been a natural instinct.
”We have spent lots of time handing the suits over to kids and filming them playing, so we can try to understand exactly what the children want from the toy.
”It’s amazing to watch the transformation that comes over them when they put the suit on.
”Suddenly they stand more confidently as if they feel they rule the world as soon as they put on the armour.”
Armouron took first place in the ‘role playing’ category at the London Toy Fair awards held earlier this year.
The three-day trade show, organised by the British Toy and Hobby Association (BTHA), featured 180 exhibitors vying to impress the world with their games, puzzles and toys.
Armouron has gone on to win ‘toy of the year’ in France and now features on Hamley’s ‘Top 10 Toys’ list.
Japanese toy giant Bandai, who make Ben 10 products, have signed a distribution deal to produce a full toy line that will hit the shelves in time for Christmas.
The company has also struck a deal to handle further licensing of the products with a book in the pipeline to tell the story of the Armouron.
Talks have already been held discussing future opportunities, including video games and a TV series.