FAIL! 5 Toys/Games that need improvement

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We don't spoil our 2 ½ year old, but he has collected his fair share of toys and games, especially over the last year or so. Here are four that hold a special place in our hearts (read: make us laugh every time we hear them).

1. The O Sole Mio Dog

By the sound of it, you probably think our batteries need replacing. But guess what? This is what the dog sounds like whether the batteries are fresh or not! And, no, we did not buy this for him... a kookie relative did, who'll remain anonymous. The jury is still out on which version is the most lackluster: the Italian or the Ragtime (wait for it!)

2. Matchman

Our son LOVES my iPhone. In fact, more than 50% of the apps on my six pages are his games. Most of them are really good and he's already learned how to spell, which is better than I could do at 2 ½. But this Matchman game is lacking, big-time, especially in the sound-effects department. Listen to the guy they got to record the colors, for instance. He sounds like he's asleep, or possibly stoned. Plus, dig the severe hiss each time he speaks, as if the sounds were recorded on a cassette tape and then transferred to mp3. It's unreal!

3. Tozzle

So Tozzle is actually an amazing app. Our son mastered the many puzzles that come with it long ago, yet they're still entertaining him"¦ which is hard to do. But the girl they got to record the names of the letters in the alphabet puzzle isn't a native English speaker, and you can't tell many of them apart, especially the R, Y and I. When he's playing this one, my son likes to say, "The phone is making a mistake, Daddy." He couldn't be more correct!

And here's our son Jack, telling us about it:

4. The Phillie Phanatic Musical Doll

When you squeeze the hands on the Phanatic, he plays different tunes. The right hand tune, the trumpet/"charge!" works perfectly fine. But the left-hand tune, ""Take Me Out to the Ball Game," has serious note/rhythm issues. Have a listen.

5. Spirograph (the new one)

When I was growing up, one of the best parts about being sick was my mom getting out the special "home-from-school" toys from the closet. My favorite of the bunch was Kenner's Spirograph, as seen in the below commercial:

Long discontinued, Hasbro now makes a couple versions that pale by comparison. They only give you circles (no cool shaped gears) and they're flimsy ones, at that, almost so cheaply made you can't even use them.

But rather than just complain, I'm trying to do something about it! Join me and more than 100 other people as we try to bring back the original Spirograph! That's right, if you're on Facebook, you can Fan our BringBackSpirograph page and help us make a statement.

How about you all? Own a toy or game that makes you shudder? Tell us about it!

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April 19, 2010 - 4:30am
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