I’ll freely admit that I’m way too old for Pokémon, but my two sons (7 and 12) are at the age where they either remember Pokémon or still think it’s something cool. I know I’ve scattered Pokémon toys throughout past holidays, but none have been enjoyed as much as two new releases from TOMY.
First up is Battle Moves Pikachu. When I first saw this, I absolutely thought they would be too old to enjoy this, but to my surprise it’s become one of their favorite things… to torment each other with.
This football sized Pikachu rolls along, makes noise and fires projectiles all when you push his stripes. When I say he rolls along, he travels pretty quickly and makes a good bit of noise, hence the reason my kids love him. If one of them is quietly watching TV or in their room reading, the other will press the stripes and send Pikachu screaming into the room, disturbing the other one. Battle Moves Pikachu has received way more attention than I expected and it’s actually been quite fun. They also love using him for NERF target practice as one will send Pikachu running while the other tries to hit him as many times as possible.
Next up is Ash’s Arena Challenge. While not as fun as Battle Moves Pikachu, my youngest son has had a blast pitting all of his small Pokémon characters, LEGO people and Minecraft toys against Ash and Pikachu. Sure, it comes with a Wobuffet figure (yes, I had to look that up) but he was quickly dispatched and replaced by larger, much more menacing fare. Ash stands on one side of the area with Pikachu placed in front of him. With a few presses of the Pokéball buttons, you can send Pikachu careening toward his opponent with a variety of attacks.
To be truthful, the play value on this has worn off a bit and seems accustomed to Beyblades other such battle toys. Once you’ve done everything with it a few times, there’s not a whole lot left. If there were some way to hook two of these together, allowing each kid to control one side, I can see the battles lasting much longer.
As it stands, I’d recommend Battle Moves Pikachu for older kids and siblings. Be aware, it’s loud. This would make it the perfect gift for a grandparent to give their grandchild. I know my parents love loud toys because they know the kids use them to torment me and each other. Ash’s Arena Challenge is a fun toy too, but only for the die-hard Pokéman fan.