Beyblade Crazy! Good, Old Fashioned Fun

What began as a Japanese manga comic book series, and was later adapted for TV and film, has become the latest must-have toy and game craze for the American school-age set.

The story focuses on a group of kids who form teams with which they battle one another using highly powerful spinning tops called Beyblades. The competition gets more and more fierce, and the varieties of game play are endless, with a distinctly addictive feel.

The toy merchandise was originally released in Asia in 2002-2003, but the spinning tops didn’t arrive on American shores ’til August of 2010, and their popularity has been skyrocketing ever since. Our kiddos can’t get enough of the colorful, fast gizmos that are activated with a satisfying pull on a ripcord, accompanied by, “3-2-1 … LET ‘er rip!” With a price tag under 10 bucks each, they’re a relatively inexpensive bribe … I mean, reward … for behavior modification purposes

Beyblades are a surprisingly simple game: just make sure your top spins longer than the other tops after battling and bumping in any makeshift arena. What we really love is that one of the main appeals seems to be that the Bey is something you can actually touch, no screen involved. This is old-fashioned, competitive fun at its finest. Outdoor play is popular, too. Any hard surface can provide game space.

For another measure of of Bey’s move into the pop culture lexicon, take a look at this recent article in the NY Times. Are your kiddo’s into the craze?

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Ellen and Rachel are two old friends and “expert” mamas—one a pediatrician and one a family therapist—with fifty years of parenting experience between them.

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