The Toy Foundation today unveiled the winners for the prestigious 22nd annual Toy of the Year Awards (TOTY) during a virtual event attended by play professionals and toy fans from around the world.
About the Toy of the Year (TOTY) awards
More than 600 TOTY Award nominees poured in late last summer for the “Oscars of the toy industry”. Of those, 114 finalists were selected by a panel of expert judges. Category winners were then determined based on votes from toy retailers (mass and specialty), media, Toy Association members, and consumers. The “Toy of the Year” winner was determined by an expert panel that discussed all the finalists before rendering a decision based on TOTY votes, holiday sales, and media buzz (traditional, online, and social). The “People’s Choice” award winners were uniquely selected by online consumer votes. All results were audited for accuracy, including the judging and voting process, and The NPD Group validated marketplace acceptance.
During the TOTY ceremony, Squishmallows from Jazwares took home the coveted “Toy of the Year” award, as well as the “People’s Choice” award and “Plush Toy of the Year.” Dubbed the “softest, cutest, cuddliest plush around,” the Squishmallows brand has proven its popularity among kids, adult collectors, and anyone looking for a hug. It was a surprise win given LEGO dominated the 16 categories with 7 wins.
Here are the 2022 Toy of the Year (TOTY) winners:
2022 Action Figure of the Year
Masters of the Universe: Masterverse (Mattel)
Masters of the Universe Masterverse action figures feature highly articulated, premium sculpts of classic characters reimagined for the modern collector. The first wave of product celebrates the Netflix series MOTU: Revelation, bringing the characters to life in exceptional detail. Each figure includes swappable parts and accessories for added storytelling.
2022 Collectible of the Year
Suit up with your favorite superheroes in this awesome LEGO® Minifigures series! Battle for good (or mischief) with characters from Marvel Studios Original series WandaVision, The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, Loki and What If…? including The Scarlet Witch, The Vision, Winter Soldier, Captain America, Loki, Sylvie, T’Challa Star-Lord and Captain Carter. Who will be in your next ‘mystery’ bag?
2022 Construction Toy of the Year
LEGO Marvel Spider-Man Daily Bugle (The LEGO Group)
LEGO Marvel Spider-Man Daily Bugle brings together a cast of 25 classic characters in the Spiderverse in a stunning build-and-display construction project for adults. A 4-story, 32” high, recreation of the Daily Bugle office block provides a towering backdrop for an all-star cast of Marvel heroes and villains.
2022 Creative Toy of the Year
Magic Mixies Magic Cauldron (Moose Toys)
Moose Toys’ must-have toy of the season, Magic Mixies Magic Cauldron, ignites kids’ imagination with the power of real magic. By combining the included mystical ingredients and waving the magic wand, an enchanting mist appears and POOF! an adorable Mixies creature that lights up and interacts is revealed.
2022 Doll of the Year
Ada Twist, Scientist Lab Doll (Just Play)
The singing and talking Ada Twist, Scientist Lab Doll lets kids reenact favorite scenes from the Netflix show, Ada Twist, Scientist. Dressed in her lab coat, the articulated doll moves in fun poses as kids conduct pretend scientific experiments with the included goggles, notebook, gloves, flasks, and 2-in-1 drawing board.
2022 Game of the Year
A Game of Cat and Mouth (Exploding Kittens)
A Game of Cat and Mouth is a fiercely competitive, magnet-powered, pinball’ish” game. In this highly addicting game, players flick colorful balls through a cat’s mouth and onto their opponents side. The first player to fling all the balls to the other side, wins!
2022 Grown-Up Toy of the Year
LEGO Botanical Collection Flower Bouquet (The LEGO Group)
Surprise a friend or loved one with a beautiful flower bouquet that’s anything but ordinary. This LEGO® Flower Bouquet features a host of beautiful blooms in an array of stunning colors – all cleverly made from LEGO pieces. The flower stems are adjustable so it’s easy to tailor the arrangement to suit any vase. Get creative with this mindful project and have fun building an eye-catching display.
2022 Infant/Toddler Toy of the Year
Fisher-Price 4-in-1 Ultimate Learning Bot (Mattel)
Build the fun, bot by bot—the 4-in-1 Ultimate Learning Bot is four toys in one! Loaded with activities, explore each bot individually or put them together to create one big interactive friend with lights, music, sounds and phrases! Plus, level up the learning with Smart Stages as baby grows.
2022 License of the Year
For 25 years, Pokémon has been one of the world’s most iconic and successful entertainment franchises, encompassing video games, apps, the Pokémon Trading Card Game, animation, movies, competitive events, publishing, and licensed products. The Pokémon Company International manages robust licensing programs spanning toys, gaming, apparel, accessories, home décor, and more.
2022 Outdoor Toy of the Year
ZURU Crazy Bunch O Balloons (ZURU)
Fill your water balloon battles with a spark of color with the craziest, most wacky water balloons ever! Simply FILL and TIE 100 ZURU Crazy Bunch O Balloons multi-color water balloons in less than 60 seconds – no hand-tying! Now made from natural latex rubber, they are now 100% recyclable!
2022 Playset of the Year
LEGO Star Wars Boba Fett’s Starship (The LEGO Group)
Build Boba Fett’s signature Star Wars starship and play out exciting missions with The Mandalorian! Jump into the cockpit and launch a bounty-hunting mission. Fire the stud shooter, target enemies with the rotating dual blaster cannons and freeze them in Carbonite. Land in Tython and use the transporter to move the starship (or display it in an upright flying position).
2022 Plush Toy of the Year
Squishmallows is a range of colorful, cuddly, collectible plush toys each with unique names and biographies. Loved by all ages, Squishmallows offers fun and comfort, coupled with a diverse and inclusive online community who creatively take to social media to express their fandom for the 1,000+ Squishmallows characters.
2022 Preschool Toy of the Year
LEGO Disney Ariel, Belle, Cinderella and Tiana’s Storybook
Adventures (The LEGO Group)
Adventure anywhere with some of your favorite Disney Princess characters. Explore the castle and spend time with Disney’s Cinderella, Tiana, Belle and Ariel. Join Ariel in her chariot at the dock or visit with Cinderella and Gus the mouse by the water. Spend time in the library with Belle and Lumiere, then visit Tiana in the kitchen. Customize the castle with cool stickers to make it yours!
2022 Specialty Toy of the Year
LEGO Everyone is Awesome (The LEGO Group)
Construct your own tribute to positivity and kindness with this LEGO® Everyone is Awesome (40516) building kit. Presented in a spectrum of colors, this buildable display includes 11 monochrome minifigures against a rainbow backdrop. Each minifigure features its own color scheme with matching hairpiece, showcasing the diversity we see in the world around us. Display your model with pride to show that although we are all different, we join together in a celebration of inclusivity and love.
2022 STEAM Toy of the Year
LEGO CREATOR 3-in-1 Ferris Wheel (The LEGO Group)
Step right up and enjoy all the fun of the fairground! Take a seat on the Ferris Wheel and experience an exciting rotating ride in the sky! Grab some popcorn and a balloon when you’re back on the ground. Next, rebuild it into a cool bumper car ride to have fun racing around, or a swing boat ride for even more thrills. Enjoy the ultimate day out with this spectacular 3in1 set.
2022 Vehicle of the Year
PLAYMOBIL Volkswagen T1 Camping Bus (PLAYMOBIL)
PLAYMOBIL delivers on this iconic vehicle’s signature styling, from its slick red & white paint job to flower-power 60s details and accessories. The VW Camper perfectly delivers that carefree “California feeling,” ready for adventure! Complete with roof rack, fully-equipped seating and sleeping areas, travel kitchen and plenty of storage!
Pamela Mastrota, executive director of The Toy Foundation, said:
“We are thrilled to unveil this year’s much-anticipated TOTY winners, all of which are outstanding examples of the toy community’s talent in designing innovative, magical, and creative playthings for kids and adults alike. We congratulate Squishmallows, each of the category winners, and all the nominees for their wonderful achievements and thank the industry for coming together in support of The Toy Foundation and its critical work of bringing toys, play, and healing to millions of children in need.”
During the event, four toy industry visionaries were officially inducted into the esteemed Toy Industry Hall of Fame – the late Johnny Gruelle, creator of Raggedy Ann & Raggedy Andy; the late Lucille King, founder of the Playskool Institute; Jim Pressman, president of Pressman Toy Corporation; and Bob Wann (retired) of PlayMonster.
Descriptions of all TOTY finalists can be found at ToyAwards.org.