Robotic finger puppets have been crowned one of the hottest toys to buy this Christmas by local retailers. The small toy animal, called a Fingerling, hugs the finger and responds to touch and sound.
It comes in three different forms: a monkey, a unicorn or a sloth. While a young person would be overjoyed to receive any WowWe Fingerling toy, the monkey has been a favourite.
Unfortunately parents late in their Christmas shopping will find it nearly impossible to find the toy on store shelves.
Hudson’s Bay at the St. Albert Centre only receives boxes of 12 at a time, and it’s unknown when those shipments will arrive. The toy is priced at $15.99 and usually sells out the same day it comes in.
Best Buy has also run out of WowWe Fingerling stock. The toy went for $14.99 in store.
Similarly Walmart is out of the toy, which they sold for $19.48 per toy. Staff say that it’s highly unlikely Walmart will see another shipment of Fingerlings before Christmas.
For those desperate to wrap their fingers around the small hand-sized plastic toy, they can try finding it online.
Amazon is selling Fingerlings at an average price of $37. One set of two Fingerlings is going for as much as $106.29.
Local posters on Kijiji are selling the toy for $35. One poster not only sold a version of the toy, but sounded the alarms for buyers beware. When one poster purchased four Fingerlings on Amazon for $15 each, the small toys came precariously wrapped in plastic.
The poster is now trying to sell the fake Fingerlings for $14 per toy.
“Purchased on amazon (sic) for $15.00 a piece, this is how they came. Didn’t come in packaging. Maybe someone wants them for stocking stuffers? Will even take $14.00 a piece, just save me the trouble of returning them!” the post read.
Fingerlings aren’t the only item to disappear the moment it touches store shelves.
Those looking for a gift to test the wits will have a difficult time finding the popular card game Codenames. Consumers are flooding to Mission Fun and Games in St. Albert, the only place left with the popular game.
“It’s holding it’s own amazingly,” said John Engel, owner of the game store. “We’ve been finding people have been telling us that we’re the last ones to have it in stock.”
He said all other Canadian retailers who sell the game sold out two weeks ago.
The game sells for $28 and is at the top of the hottest board game list at Mission Fun and Games for the second year in a row.
Codenames launched in 2015 and quickly gained global attention. The interactive game tasks players with detecting who the spies are on the other team.
“It’s a game that’s a tremendous amount of fun to play. It’s not complicated, it has a whole bunch of replay value to it,” he said.
Mission Fun and Games prepared in advance for the Christmas season. Each month the store releases a list of their top 20 games and Codenames consistently placed high. Knowing the game was popular Engel placed a large order in October in advance.
The Bookstore on Perron Street has also seen an increase in sales for their popular Cobble Hill puzzles. The average puzzle goes for $19.99 for 1,000 pieces.
“This particular brand is well made and everybody loves a good puzzle,” said Angela Chatwin, owner of the book store.