Before this quiz starts, let’s take a moment of silence for Toys R Us. As a kid in the '90s, there’s something magical about walking into a Toys R Us store: the aisles of action figures stretching to infinity, the already assembled Lego dioramas behind glass windows, the racks of bicycles in every size and color imaginable, and the walls filled to the brim with various video games. If school was Mordor, teeming with Orc teachers ready to dish out lava embalmed homework, then this was The Shire (i.e. a pastoral place where time and innocence stood still).
But as we grow older and turn our attention to things like money, work, women (or men), the toys we once cherished are condemned to collect dust—or to be kept away in a moldy basement for eternity. Even though our toys might be rotting away, a short glimpse of them is still enough to tug our heartstrings in the name of nostalgia. And why not? After all, we’ve spent countless hours with our imaginations with them. But are those memories enough to pass this quiz? For those born in 1999, don’t worry—there might be a sequel quiz for 2000’s kids soon.
1What is the name of this oven for mini-mad scientists?
This is one of the most dangerous toys on the list. Seriously, why would anyone let kids have their own mini-furnaces like they're in Maoist China? The toy company can claim they're a lot safer than their '60s predecessors--which were infinitely a lot worse because...well, it was the '60s--but the questionable fumes might say otherwise. The cheaper alternative that kept our respiratory systems intact was going out and collecting insects in jars. They also had edible ones. What is the name of this toy?
2What's the name of this Lego for the nerds?
Let's be real: anyone who grew up with this toy is not taking quizzes on this site. He/she is probably doing something more productive like working on a new type of renewable energy as a mechanical engineer. All kidding aside, this toy is the smart kid's Lego. Instead of mini-figures of Star Wars characters and dragons, this toy favored practicality. One could devise all kinds of Rube Goldberg contraptions with this brand. What's the name of this Lego for the nerds?
3What was the name of this proto-VR toy?
When video games and the internet were still considered as luxury items, this was most '90s kids' alternative form of entertainment. In some ways, this toy was superior because although the kid was subjected to still images, it was up to him/her to fill the gaps with his/her imagination. But still, you can only pull on the lever so many times and look at the same images until you chuck the thing out. What was the name of this proto-VR toy?
4What is the name of these figures that only a mother could love?
These toys were just...ugh. They didn't do anything useful like burp out an annoying catchphrase or ooze out some kind of slime. The only real thing you could do is comb their hair. Real fun. The story behind them is a lot more entertaining than the toys themselves: they were originally carved from wood by a Scandinavian fisherman for his daughter. But it wasn't until the '90s when they really exploded in popularity due to a dizzying array of flamboyant hairstyles. What is the name of these figures?
5 What's the name of this virtual toy?
If a kid could kept this virtual pet alive, he/she was crowned as the guardian of all living things. But for the 90% of kids who pressured their parents into buying one--or got one from a happy meal? Let's just say that the virtual farm is filled to the brim with our former pets. Like the bag of flour baby of yester-generations, these toys tested whether or not kids were reliable. And just like real life, it rarely forgives. What's the name of this virtual toy?
6What were these stuffed animals called?
These stuffed animals were the '90s kids version of bitcoin: useless but worth a lot of money for some reason. "Yeah, let's not buy stock, Sharon. Let's get some stuffed animals as sound financial investments." Oof, it must suck to be the person who fell for the Beanie Babies economy scheme and found himself/herself with boxes full of stuffed animals and not cash. Miraculously, they still hold some worth--just not the ones you found in your happy meal. What were these stuffed animals called?
7What was the name of this brand of miniature dolls?
This toy was supposed to be a more affordable alternative to dolls and action figures. As their popularity grew in subsequent years, so did the size of the toys. Ultimately, the original smaller variants were phased out in favor of their larger counter parts. A similar toy line was also marketed towards young boys called "Mighty Max." Choking hazards were probably common due to the small size of the figurines--this author remembers such a case. What was the name of this brand?
8What's the name of this Jenga-esque game?
Was Jenga too frustrating for you because you kept making the wrong first move? Then enter this game, which was far more forgiving given its simplicity. The rules seem simple enough: just keep removing the sticks from the tube and don't let the marbles drop. This is one of the rare times where picking the shortest straw would be in a player's best interests. Judging the Amazon reviews, the newer ones pale in comparison to the original ones. What's the name of this game?
9What's the name of this game?
Although these were played long before the '90s--at least since the 1600's--it took a school teacher in Hawaii to skyrocket the game's popularity worldwide. See, Blossom Galbiso wanted her students to have a peaceful alternative to games such as dodgeball, so she introduced a game from her childhood. The irony is that when this game grew in popularity, some school districts banned the game because it was perceived as "gambling" and it became a distraction in classrooms. What's the name of this game?
10What's the name of this toy?
This was honestly the coolest thing in the '90s. If anything, this toy taught us the importance of teamwork: if we all form a bond and act according to our roles, we can overcome any obstacle in our way. Especially if that obstacle happens to be a huge sea-monster that shoots lasers from its mouth. Unfortunately, in the '90s, there were a lot of bootlegs. But as a kid, that didn't matter as long as you got a toy. What's the name of this toy?
11What's the name of this toy?
At best, this toy was annoying and at worst, it was pure nightmare fuel. Has no one ever seen Child's Play? Granted, the movie was about 10 years earlier than this toy's debut, but still...the warnings of sentient toys should've been fresh in everyone's minds in the '90s. The worst thing was this thing coming alive in the dark for no reason. The only solution was to drop it in a vat of molten metal like in the ending of Terminator 2. What's the name of this stuffed nightmare?
12What's the name of this toy?
The people who created this toy were probably like, "Hey, these girl toys aren't nearly as dangerous as the toys for boys. Let's change that in the name of equality!" Well, that's not 100% correct, but who would've thought that little girls would launch these aerodynamic Barbies at each other? The 2000s kids missed out on this because it was recalled sometime in 2000. Like most '90s toys, it even had a TV show. So the true '90s kids should be able to guess this toy.
13What's the name of this anxiety-inducing game?
This game is probably the reason why a lot of '90s kids have anxiety now. For some reason, a lot of games in the '90s pit you against time, which is nifty because time is an unbeatable opponent--almost like Ingmar Bergman's The Seventh Seal. Sure, you can beat it in a few matches, but are you really the victor when you could be doing something else? The rules are simple: the little figures pop out of the board and you have to match their shapes in the board. What's the name of this anxiety-inducing game?
14What's the name of this thing?
Another trait of '90s toys: giving inanimate objects anthropomorphic features. Looking back, there's an existentialist story behind this toy: A bucket that has been given the gift of life but hungers nothing except for balls--OK, grow up because that's not the intention here. And yet. after it gets fed its spherical desires, the bucket spits them right out and the cycle of hunger continues. Is this not the Myth of Sisyphus for Kids edition? This is probably what Camus was getting at because the kids don't seem to mind this mindless task. What's the name of this thing?
15What's the name of this morning alarm clock?
Ah, Nickelodeon. What happened? It used to be a fun, vibrant channel with unlimited creativity and now it's just...contrived and corporate. This alarm clock is the embodiment of the channel in its heyday: loud, zany, and unconventional. The only thing missing is that it didn't shoot out green slime. Sure, one could opt for a conventional alarm clock, but does it have 10 annoying alarm sounds? Maybe if more kids had this, they would actually look forward to school. What's the name of this morning alarm clock?
16What's the name of this brand of toys?
Like the Capulets and the Montagues, the Jets and the Sharks, and the Greasers and the Socs, these toys were rivals to the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Both toys featured sea creatures who were always up for a throw down. Unlike the Ninja Turtles, however, the show was anything than memorable. A crossover would have been great, but sadly that never came to fruition and the world will never know who is is the stronger sea creature. Most people remember the toys--and how could they not? What's the name of this brand of toys?
17What were the names of these mini-whips?
If putting on bracelets were too much work, then these were the best solution. But did anyone really have that problem in the '90s? Let's be honest: most kids used them to solve disputes on the playground where one could hear loud cracks followed by mysterious red markings on children's arms. Then they would turn back into bracelets when an adult was nearby. Looking back, banning them in classrooms were probably a smart idea. What were the names of these mini-whips?
18What's the name of these trading cards?
For a lot of kids, this was the gateway to anime. In fact, this was probably the first anime to make a huge impact in the Western world. Granted that the west was already familiar, but more people in the West knew more about this anime than something like Yu Yu Hakusho. It was first launched as a Game Boy game, then there was a TV show, and then trading card games. The final step is to have a Jurassic Park-style theme park filled with these monsters. What's the name of these trading cards?
19What's the name of this bear?
Apparently, these stuffed teddy bears had an audio cassette behind its back to tell children stories. One can't but help be tempted to replace the cassette in the bear's back with Darkthrone's Transylvanian Hunger. Well, evil-doers and Norwegian metalheads, beware! Because there's some kind of technology that can detect cassettes types and just outright ignores the ones it doesn't recognize. There's also all sorts of outfits you could buy for your bear like pajamas, winter coats, etc. What's the name of this bear?
20What's the name of this art tool for toddlers?
This was for people who thought the Etch A Sketch was too technical for them, yet they both probably used the same technology. This was just a nice doodle board without making anything permanent--especially if the kid loved to draw on walls. It was likely that anyone who drew on this toy didn't use it to recreate the drawings on commercials or on the box--it was mostly abstract art. Hopefully, it gave most '90s kids a greater appreciation for abstract art, but that's unlikely. What's the name of this art tool?
21What's the name of this brand of mini whips?
This toy brand rivaled Hot Wheels. Unlike Hot Wheels or other miniature toy car brands, however, this toy company wasn't limited to just cars. No, this company had all sorts of vehicles and play sets from multiple franchises. For example, they had play-sets for Star Wars, Star Trek, and even Aliens. Hot Wheels, on the other hand, tried to reinvent the wheel by making cars that fit a certain theme. An example is them making a car that has all the features of a Tie-Fighter, but not actually selling the actual Tie-Fighter itself. What's the name of this brand?
22What's the name of this game?
Let's face it, most board games are so boring that you would rather be doing your own homework. This game, however, was actually not that bad. The objective of this game was to not be the icebreaker (i.e. be the person who makes the figure in the middle slip through the cracks). There are variants of the game where words are written on the ice blocks so that kids can expand their vocabulary. Honestly, that sounds boring. What's the name of this game?
23What's the exact name of this Star Wars toy?
When The Phantom Menace came out, we were given a shoddy movie and an even shoddier era of Star Wars toys. The problem with these toys were their guilt by association. This toy in particular was a little too...bleh. Anyone who has ever seen Monty Python's The Meaning of Life will be reminded of the scene with Mr. Creosote. The irony is that anyone who grew up playing with this is probably doing the same after a good time. What's the official name of this toy?
24 What was the name of these toys (and the show)?
The previous questions were soft balls, but it's time to crank up the difficulty for the next two questions. At first, this toy line was a movie from Troma studios called "The Toxic Avenger," a cinema classic about a nerd who falls into radioactive waste. He turns into a mutant superhero, falls in love with a blind girl, and mops up crime--literally. For some reason, it spawned a TV series that was way tamer than the original movies and lasted for 13 episodes. What was the name of these toys and the show?
25What's the name of this line of action figures?
In an attempt to make one of the previous toys a lot more palatable to boys, this brand was conjured but failed to make any lasting impressions like TMNT or Captain Planet. This is the premise: a lousy rock band finds some gems and turn into a bunch of trolls. Not the type who browse on the internet all day and make mean comments; like, actual troll creatures. There was an SNES game and a TV show. What's the name of this line of action figures?