Walmart Has a Hidden Toy Section That’s Like a Time Machine to Your Childhood

published Nov 18, 2019
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Credit: Walmart

‘Tis the season to do some toy shopping! It’s no surprise that high-tech items like hoverboards, gaming systems, and the interactive Juno the Baby Elephant are topping most kids’ wish lists this year, but we can’t help but feel nostalgic for the simple toys and games that brought us so much joy with so few bells and whistles. Walmart totally gets us and has curated a Classic Toys section that’s filled with iconic favorites that span generations, including Connect 4, My Little Pony, the Easy-Bake Oven, and Trouble (oh, that Pop-O-Matic bubble!). We rounded up some of our all-time favorites that you’ll want to share with your favorite kid this holiday—or maybe even gift to yourself to bust out after Thanksgiving dinner.

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Lite Brite

Sailboats, butterflies. Yup, you can still make those and many more fun light-up designs with Lite Brite. This updated version features a bigger screen and even more colored pegs, which is good, because somehow we always seemed to lose them.

Buy: Lite Brite, $14.97

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Candy Land

Choose a character and follow the path past Peppermint Forest, Cupcake Commons, and more sweet locations all the way to King Kandy’s Castle. But be careful not to get stuck in Chocolate Swamp (although, honestly, in real life that sounds like it would be delightful).

Buy: Candy Land, $7.96 $5.92

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Easy-Bake Ultimate Oven

Before the Instant Pot and the Air Fryer, we were cooking by lightbulb with the Easy-Bake Oven. Well, at least we were as kids. This dazzling edition includes a glittery oven, plus a baking pan and pan tool that budding bakers can use for making sweet and savory treats.

Buy: Easy-Bake Ultimate Oven – Baking Star Edition, $58.85 $34.97

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Poor Cavity Sam. Not only does he have a terrible name, but his health is a complete mess. Thankfully, you can tweeze out that water in his knee or that butterfly in his stomach. But use a steady hand or you’ll set off the buzzer and trigger his red-light nose.

Buy: Operation, $19.99 $13.44

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We’re not buying that a kid drew that artists’ palette in the photo above. Drawing with an Etch-a-Sketch is tricky—but still tons of fun. And the best part is that even if you mess up, all you have to do is flip the tablet upside down, give it a shake, and start over again.

Buy: Etch-a-Sketch, $14.96 $9.99

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There was nothing better than getting to do that sliiiide along the board. And nothing worse than getting bumped by another pawn and sent back to Start again. And let’s be honest, your opponent was never sorry when they did that to you.

Buy: Sorry!, $13.99

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My Little Pony – 35th Anniversary Collectors Ponies

Everyone has blue, pink, and purple hair these days, but My Little Pony did it first, back in the ’80s. As always, every Pony comes with a comb and ribbon for creating flawless horsey hairstyles.

Buy: My Little Pony – 35th Anniversary Collectors Ponies, $12.90

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Connect 4

It’s kind of like tic-tac-toe, only the goal of this game is to get four in a row instead of three, and to experience the joy of getting to pull the lever to release all the tokens after your victory.

Buy: Connect 4, $9.99 $6.88

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Care Bears Large Plush

It doesn’t get much more ’80s than this: a Care Bear and a rainbow. Cheer Bear was just one of the popular personality-packed characters in the beloved Care Bear line, which also included Bedtime Bear, Birthday Bear, Friend Bear, Good Luck Bear, Funshine Bear, Tenderheart Bear, Love-a-Lot Bear, Wish Bear, and Grumpy Bear. Which one did you relate to as a kid, and which do you relate to as an adult?

Buy: Care Bears Large Plush, $17.99 $14.99

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Hungry Hungry Hippos

The object of the game was to “eat” the most marbles with your hippo—and to try to keep those loud clacking sounds from annoying your parents.

Buy: Hungry Hungry Hippos, $19.99 $9.87

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Rubik’s Cube

Don’t mind us, we’re still trying to match up all the colors on the same Rubik’s cube we’ve been turning since we were 8.

Buy: Rubik’s Cube, $9.97 $3.44

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Mr. Potato Head

He’s 67 years old and still has all his parts! The “Toy Story” legend comes with 11 accessories that you can use to create Mr. Potato Head’s traditional look or do a complete mashup.

Buy: Mr. Potato Head, $6.88

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It’s all about that Pop-O-Matic bubble. Give it a press, move your pegs along the board, and keep pressing and popping until you send them all Home.

Buy: Trouble, $9.99 $6.88

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Original Slinky

As the song goes, it walks down stairs alone or in pairs…. aaaaand that’s pretty much all a Slinky does. Still, that’s pretty entertaining when you’re 4, no?

Buy: Original Slinky, $5.99 $3.39

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Set the timer and then quickly fit all the shapes into the matching holes before the board pops up and the pieces explode everywhere. Not stressful at all, right?

Buy: Perfection, $19.99 $13.59

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Polly Pocket Sweet Treat Cupcake Cafe

Polly Pocket’s cupcake-shaped compact is filled with doors that open up to lots of sweet surprises. In the cafe, you can lift the table to transform it into a stage where Polly and her friend Shani can perform. The best part is that the new Polly includes something called “stick technology,” which keeps her securely in place and prevents her from toppling over and embarrassing herself while performing.

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The classic board game includes new tokens like a rubber ducky, Tyrannosaurus Rex, and penguin, but the objective remains the same: Buy up as much property as you can, then build hotels and houses. Oh, and try not to get sent directly to jail for no apparent reason and with no real legal explanation.

Buy: Monopoly, $19.99 $11.88

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Magic 8 Ball

Will today’s kids find the Magic 8 Ball fun? It is certain. Will they grow tired of it after a few weeks? Ask again later. Will you find a better price elsewhere? Don’t count on it.

Buy: Magic 8 Ball, $8.97 $5.69

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Chutes and Ladders

The goal of the game is to be the first to make it to the 100 spot by climbing up ladders and avoiding sliding down chutes. Now that we’re adults, we’ll take sliding down chutes over climbing ladders any day, because it’s much less strenuous.

Buy: Chutes and Ladders, $8.88 $5.92

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LEGO Classic Medium Creative Brick Collection

Everything is awesome about this set, which includes 484 brick pieces in 35 different colors for building motorcycles, castles, and even a tiger! Sure beats the square houses we built as kids.

Buy: LEGO Classic Medium Creative Brick Collection, $34.99 $27.99

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B8? No? G7? Missed again? C3? Nothing?!! Keep trying until you get enough red pegs to take down one of your opponent’s battleships.

Buy: Battleship, $14.99 $11.92

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Strawberry Shortcake 35th Anniversary Doll

Though she’s gotten a more modern makeover in recent years, we’re “berry” happy to see this Strawberry Shortcake rag doll, wearing her classic uniform of a bonnet, red dress, green striped stockings, and signature strawberry scent. Nothing wrong with being stuck in a fashion rut.

Buy: Strawberry Shortcake 35th Anniversary Doll, $14.49

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The Game of Life

Get in your car, spin the numbered wheel, and steer your way through life, building a career, starting a family, and even adopting pets along the way. Of course, all of this will cost you money, and the ultimate object of the game is to retire rich. We can all dream, can’t we?

Buy: The Game of Life, $13.44

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Magna Doodle

More grown up than Etch-a-Sketch, Magna Doodle includes a pen for making precise drawings or writing messages, plus X and O “stamps” for creating patterns or playing tic-tac-toe. To clean the board, simply slide the orange tab back and forth. Wait, we could use one of these now!

Buy: Magna Doodle, $14.97 $12.88

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You know the drill: Grab seven tiles (pray that you don’t get the Q and no vowels!), use them to form a word on the Scrabble board, and try for that coveted triple-word-score spot. Be sure to have a Scrabble dictionary  on hand for challenging those words you’re convinced your friend made up.

Buy: Scrabble, $19.99 $13.44

This post originally appeared on Apartment Therapy. See it here: Walmart has a Hidden Section that’s Basically a Time Machine to Your Childhood