Exclusive: Playing to win – the Games & Puzzles category

Published on: 6th April 2023

Toy World takes a look at how the Games & Puzzles category is shaping up this year, and discovers the biggest themes, events and licences making their mark on the space.

It’s now a little over a month till one of Britain’s most exciting events for decades takes place, the coronation of King Charles III on 8th May, and the Games & Puzzles sector is ramped up for the celebrations. Winning Moves is releasing a special edition Kings & Queens of Britain Monopoly, Tomy has created a new Best of the Royals addition for its Logo range, while Ravensburger, Jumbo and Gibsons have all unveiled new puzzles. These new offerings are already proving popular, so retailers should act quickly if their shelves are ‘royally lacking’.

2023 marks 100 years of Disney, so a raft of Disney licensed games and puzzles has been released. Cartamundi is continuing its Princess Race Home game, part of the Shuffle Disney collection, while Ravensburger is marking the occasion with a Disney Labyrinth 100th Anniversary edition and six Disney 100 300-piece Puzzle Moments.

Disney isn’t the only one celebrating an anniversary: this year, Scrabble celebrates 75 of being ‘fun beyond words’, and Cranium – billed as the mother of all party games – is 25 this year. Fans of both Scrabble and Cranium can enjoy new innovations to mark both milestones.

The overall Party Games subcategory continues to perform well, with the likes of Tomy and Big Potato telling us consumer demand for both adult and family-friendly titles continues to grow. True Crime and licensed games also remain popular among gamers, with properties including Super Mario and The Traitors shaping this category this year. Generic themes such as music and unicorns are also holding their own – Curious Universe and Orchard Toys are releasing unicorn-themed games this year that they feel will be best-sellers.

Away from the games table, we’re also seeing iconic game brands brought to consumers in imaginative new ways. Hasbro recently invited players to solve the murder of Boddy Black via its immersive Instagram experience, and a new Dobble ride, Dobble Tea Party, has arrived at Thorpe Park. As part of the partnership, Dobble will also create a special Thorpe Park Resort edition of the game.

To find out what else is shaping the Games & Puzzles category, and to hear from a number of major suppliers including Big Potato, Tomy, Ravensburger, Gibsons and Vivid  about their thoughts on 2023, click here to read the full article published in the April issue of Toy World.


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