'80s Kids Should Be Able to Identify All of These Toys!



By: Lauren Lubas

6 Min Quiz

Image: susaro / DigitalVision Vectors / Getty Images

About This Quiz

If you think there's no market for the toys that were around when you were growing up, think again. Nearly every kid that grew up in the 1980s thinks back fondly on the toys they played with, the toys they wanted and the toys their friends had. Each toy is a memory in and of itself. These toys held magical powers that could take you to whole new worlds. Although there was a clear line between "girls'" toys and "boys'" toys back then, anyone with a sibling of the opposite gender would be able to spot those '80s toys from a mile away.

Toys and television came together to create backstories and intricate plots for the action figures and stuffed animals that we had in our toy boxes. Every character we saw on screen could be in our homes, for a not so nominal fee. This inspired even more playtime with even more creativity. Additionally, toys started doing more in the 1980s. They could transform from one thing to another (and we're not just talking about the Transformers toys). 

If you have a strong connection to the toys that came to the market in the 1980s, you probably think you're going to ace this test. However, we'll warn you now, we went pretty deep with some of the finds. Do you have what it takes to name all of them?

What are these little figures called?

We all remember the "Smurfs" cartoon series, but the biggest fans also remember the Smurfs toys and playsets. If you collected them all, you probably had multiple Smurfettes as well.


What was this yellow slide called?

Anyone who has ever been on a Slip 'N Slide probably doesn't let their children play on them. However, as long as you cleared the area of rocks before setting up the large yellow tarp, you probably sustained minimal injuries.


Can you name these magical creatures with wild hair?

My Little Pony figures were among the top-selling toys of the 1980s. They were colorful and came with accessories. For many girls back then, My Little Pony figures became Barbie's pets.


Do you recognize this video game that nearly every '80s kid had?

Few know that the original name for the Atari 2600 was the Atari VCS (Video Computer System). However, stand-alone video games broke away and made names for themselves separate from computers.


These toys are currently worth a small fortune. What franchise are they from?

Star Wars toys have an interesting history. A small toy company, Kenner, created them and made quite a bit of money in the '70s and '80s. Today these toys are collectibles, worth quite a bit of money.


Can you name this puzzle game?

The Rubik's Cube was one of the most frustrating games around. The majority of children who had one simply never got it back to a solid color on each side. On the other hand, there were the kids who could solve it quickly (or change the stickers around).


This bear helped children learn how to read. Do you know his name?

Teddy Ruxpin was a talking bear that came with books and cassette tapes. You'd put the tape into Teddy and press play ... then his mouth would move! This innovative toy gave children hours of educational playtime.


Do you remember which dolls came with birth certificates?

When changing your Cabbage Patch Kid's diaper, you probably came across the Xavier Roberts tattoo on its bottom. While it was a clear stamp of ownership, it was also an odd placement.


Can you name these toys that gave children vehicles and robots at the same time?

The majority of '80s boys had at least one Transformer action figure. These were definitely a work of ingenious engineering, as the robots looked like actual vehicles when they were transformed.


Who are these monochrome boxers?

Back in the 1980s, boxing was pretty big. However, in order to keep children from hurting each other, parents would generally get this toy for kids to take out their aggression. Whether you chose the blue guy or the red guy, your goal was to pop the opponent's head off.


Which action figures used to be about the size of Barbie, but were much smaller in the 1980s?

G.I. Joe dolls were originally marketed as bigger action figures with real clothes. However, all of that changed in 1982 when G.I. Joes were relaunched at a smaller size. This helped them nix the "boy-doll" characteristics of the toys as well as create an entire line of affordable vehicles.


On a nice day, children could go riding on these without worrying about falling down. What are they?

Whether you had a brand new Big Wheel or a hand-me-down, you knew that this toy made you look cool. If you had to play with friends who didn't have Big Wheels, you'd simply flip it over and play ice cream machine.


If you didn't go on vacation, you could always grab one of these. What is it?

View-Masters were around since the 1930s, but in the 1980s, you could get reels with your favorite characters. They were perfect for long car rides or situations that didn't involve television sets.


What are these collectible cards called?

Garbage Pail Kids were card sets with stickers. They were a spoof on Cabbage Patch Kids, without the actual dolls themselves. In 1987 a movie was released about the Garbage Pail Kids, which any collector had to see.


Can you name these floppy stuffed animals?

Puffalumps were stuffed animals that didn't have a whole lot of stuffing. They were made of nylon and soft cotton. If they ever needed to be washed, you knew it was the last you'd see of them — they didn't hold up well in the washing machine.


Which toy helped children become fashion designers?

Children could create their own outfits by switching these plates around and transferring them over to a piece of paper with a crayon. Once they completed an outfit, they could color and design it any way they pleased.


Which toy helped kids make their own bugs and spiders?

The "boy toy" equivalent to the Easy-Bake Oven was the Thingmaker II Creepy Crawlers machine. Children would squeeze a heated gel-like substance into a mold and let it cool until the toys became jiggly and, well, creepy. Unfortunately, this version didn't work nearly as well as the original Thingmaker of the 1960s, which featured a small oven that could burn fingers.


This toy made learning to spell fun. What is it?

The Speak & Spell was an excellent learning tool for young children. While many games and toys in the 1980s focused on whimsy or destruction, the Speak & Spell showed kids that learning could also be a form of play.


Can you name this toy that helped young children learn new words?

If you were younger in the 1980s, chances are you had one of these educational toys. With the See 'n Say, you'd turn the dial to the image you wanted the toy to say, and then pull a string. These days, the toy has a lever, but you got a pull string in the '80s.


Can you identify this electronic sports game that had a whistle sound?

Handheld electronic games were really booming in the 1980s. Electronic Football was a great game for children and adults alike. You could play multiplayer or against the computer, giving you the ability to move dots around on a calculator screen.


Can you name these monsters that had slime coming out of them?

This was the type of toy that was heavily marketed around Halloween. However, once you ran out of the ooze that came out of these figures' eyes, ears and mouths, the fun ended rather quickly ... and your mom was probably mad that you got it on the couch.


Can you name this toy that gave children a delicious dessert?

The Snoopy Sno-Cone Machine gave children the ability to crush their own ice and make their own snacks ... as long as their parents purchased (or made) flavored syrup to go on top. It was a great summer toy for any child.


Do you recognize these little furry dolls?

The Monchhichi was a mix between a stuffed monkey and a Cabbage Patch Kid. It had a hard face, hands and legs, but its fur was soft and pettable. It could hold onto its own feet and put a thumb in its mouth as well.


Before the iPad, this contraption helped teach children. What is it called?

The Talking Whiz Kid read game cartridges and allowed children to swap them out, depending on what they felt like learning. While the screen looked very much like a calculator of the same time period, the programming of this toy was intense.


Which '80s toy was Earth's first line of defense?

Starcom toys were pretty simple, but they came with a lot of accessories. Though the line isn't the most famous of the 1980s, they did make interesting commercials that explained how the Earth needed to be saved from outer space forces.


Here's a blast from the past! Can you name this fighting toy?

Food Fighters looked like pretty mean food. This toy line gave a new meaning to playing with your food. They seemed a little docile, but they were actually some intensely fattening foods with bad attitudes.


It's not an old-school cell phone. Do you know what it is?

Merlin was an electronic game without a screen. However, it did have a speaker, and you could play various one- and two-player games on it. This game gave children hours of fun play and learning time.


What are these anthropomorphic animals with weapons?

If you don't recognize these toys, you may be looking at the wrong ones — there were 84 different kinds of Battle Beasts on the market. These were small fighting/war toys for young children.


This Fisher-Price product put some extra power into children's hands. What is it?

The Fisher-Price Cassette Player gave children their own personal boom box to play with. Not only did it play your favorite tunes, but it also recorded them for you (for personal use only, of course).


What is the name of this doll that challenged Barbie?

All '80s kids remember seeing "Jem and the Holograms" on their TV screens, and most girls wanted the dolls that went along with the series. Jem was the opposite of Barbie — she had wild hair and was an '80s rocker through and through.


What army toys had squishy butts?

The Army Ants had very interesting and catchy commercials. They would fight the flying ants. For the most part, however, young boys added them as mutants in their G.I. Joe war games.


Children could make their own stories with which quiet-time toys?

Colorforms let children use their imaginations while playing with their favorite cartoon characters. The clinging vinyl shapes could be arranged and rearranged on a background, allowing children to create their own stories over and over again.


With this toy, you got to play with a lot of slime. What is it called?

This toy was so weird, it was even marketed as "gross" and "disgusting" for little boys. The inside of the alien you were going to dissect was covered in slime, and each of the pieces was a little dirty. It was a gross toy, but somebody played with it.


Do you know these toys that were created to fight computer viruses?

In the age of Transformers, companies wanted to market things that changed into other things as much as possible. Computer Warriors hid in random things like Pepsi cans and clocks. They were cool toys, but we aren't sure that the creators really understood what computer viruses were at the time.


What is the name of the toy series that included good wizards and bad wizards?

The Saga of Crystar collection included crystal warriors that were either good wizards or evil wizards. While these are obscure toys, you might recognize some of the body types and weapons from the Masters of the Universe collection.


What was the name of Rainbow Brite's horse?

Starlite was a stuffed horse that could stand on its own and actually hold a Rainbow Brite doll of about the same size. This toy had rainbow yarn for hair and a star embroidered on its forehead.


Which toys turned rocks into bugs?

Rocks & Bugs & Things were equal parts simple and frightening. What originally looks like a pile of rocks opens up to reveal a terrifying face. They didn't last very long, but they were an attempt at expanding the Transformer craze.


Do you remember these self-healing monsters?

With options like dragons, lizards and demons, who could resist wanting at least one of these things? They came in their own eggs, and you could pretty much do anything to them, and they'd return to their original form.


Do you remember these short-lived robot vehicles?

Chargertron toys were basically a docking system with a car that transformed as it drove away. You needed batteries for them. While the commercial for them was rather exciting, they didn't work very well.


These Tonka vehicles were intricate and pretty cool. What were they called?

Spiral Zone army vehicles were some of the most intricate toys of the decade. They had moving parts that worked in conjunction with the wheels, so when you pushed the vehicle, a large arm would move toward the opponent in a very aggressive manner.


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