#Engage #ToyFair Takes NYC


It may look a lot different than depicted in the movie Big, but most New Yorkers will tell you that Toy Fair is still the most fun in town.  And this year, Engage! is co-locating its conference focused on virtual goods, technology platforms, and online/offline toy integration.  Most of the action is at the Jacob Javits Convention Center.  Follow #toyfair #engage. Here’s the guide along with a postnoted summary of tweets and links to the audio:

Sa 2/13
TOTY awards (
Chelsea Piers, NYC)

Su 2/14

ASTRA party (Rock Cafe, 20 W 50, Rockefeller Plaza)

M 2/15
EXPO Watch Live:  www.toyassociation.org/AM/Template.cfm?Section=Toy_Fair_2010_Live_Stream
Fred Armisen, Kenan Thompson promoting SNL board game

Tu 2/16
9-6, Expo
Daryl Hannah talking about growing up in a hotel where they use to host toy fair at Toy Fair with her line of board games, Liebrary:
LEGO: http://starwarsblog.starwars.com/index.php/2010/02/16/cool-lego-toy-fair-swag/
Maclaren Doll Strollers:  http://img86.yfrog.com/i/7kb.jpg/
Agent M & Iron Man:  http://agentmlovestacos.com/post/393565586/life-size-iron-man-statue-at-the-hasbro-showroom
Tamagatchi:  http://img131.yfrog.com/i/181j.jpg/
9-10, Will Wright, SIMS Creator
(Big fan of all things space:  James Bond, chemistry sets, Mattel’s Vertibird.  Moore’s law impacting toy industry along with everything else. Play/games are powerful life tools to teach categorization, causality, behavior – from humans to animals. Play builds internal models for behavior, games test those models.  Hot Wheels are particle accelerators for little kids.  Computers not so hot for AI, much better for harvesting human intelligence.  Play is infusing the word around us, virtual is becoming real via augmented reality.  Everytime computers advance and display traits of intelligence, we redefine what intelligence means. Computers are imagination amplifiers. Ask not what toys can do for you, ask what you can do for toys.)

10:15-11:15, Future of Play w Disney, MIT..
(Carlin West – Eventually there will be toys with apps.  Challenge is to push the interaction out to the objects and get it off the screen.  Which senses will be important to the future of play.)
Other sessions:  VG Payment Solutions with Renata Dionello, PayPal, Melinda Byerley, Linden Lab, Gene Hoffman, Vindicia, Ravi Mehta, Viximo, Margaret Mackenzie, BOKU, Anya Shapina, Peanut Labs (VG market is $5.3B.) and Adding Online Presence to Offline Brand with Peter Marx, Mattel, Michael Bellavia, Animax..
11:15-12 Game Changing Toys; Monetization with Teemu Huuhtanen, Sulake…; Retail Game Cards with Kevin Dasch, IMVU, Elliot Solomon, Disney Online, Ron Williams, Zeevex..; Best Practices with Jason Robar, Gazillion..
1-2, Lane Merrifeld, Club Penguin
(The Future of Storytelling in a Connected World.  Though what makes a great story remains the same, the act of telling a great story continued to evolve.  Announced new DS title, first DS title sold 1.5mm units.  Disney parks will be adding Carsland.  In building Virtual Worlds, Our story counts, not my story or the story.  We begin a narrative we have no intention of finishing.  The player becomes the storyteller.  The cloud allows entertainment to be distributed across multiple devices.  Narratives connected over multiple devices is the future. Technology is wrapping itself around us as opposed to us being wrapped around technology.  Being there to listen is more important that what you have to say.  Before the term VW was coined we used to call Club Penguin a virtual playground.)
Sessions not tweeted:  Connecting Online to Offline: Rich Cleveland, Hasbro, Cynthia Neiman, Mattel, Dave Finnegan, Build-A-Bear..; Tapping Emotional Triggers:  Nathan Pearce, SOE, Mattias Miksche, Stardoll…; VG case studies:  Tim Williams, Engage!..; Kids UGC
3:30-4:30, Where Are Kids Playing
(Computers and TVs are the same – 11yo panelist.  Most kids spend money on physical goods vs online subscriptions.  Subscriptions should be really cheap, $10-25/year)
Other sessions:  Laralyn McWilliams, Free Realms; Brand Goes Social with John Vechey, PopCap Games, Jason Oberfest, ngmoco; Online Play Strategy with Steve Grimes, Topps, Oliver Mitchell, RobotGalaxy, James Jones, Hasbro, David Lord, Knowledge Adventure…
4:30-6, Reception
7pm, ZONG Afterparty
(Ace Hotel, 20 W 29th)

W 2/17
9-4, Expo
9-10, Natalie Hornsby, Zhu Zhu Pets

VCs: Fred Wilson, Union Square Ventures, Ryan MacIntyre, Foundry, Woody Benson, Prism, Jeremy Liew, Lightspeed Ventures;  Engaging Through Narration, Character Development and Story;  Digital Goods and Microtransactions:  Kevin Dasch, IMVU, Wade Tinney, Large Animal Games, Charles Hudson, Serious Business, Margaret Wallace, Playmatics
Engagement – Webosaurs, Brandissimo..; TV Brand in VW:  Jeffery Fleischman, Seasame Workshop, Matt Cullen, NFL..; Mobile Payments: David Marcus, Zong, Ted Sorom, Rixty, Kris Soumas, A&E..
1-2, Tor Sirset, Bandai

Mommy Bloggers; Mark Hansen, LEGO..; Payment Systems that Power VG: Karl Mehta, PlaySpan, Kurt Davis, BOKU..
Innovation in Toys & Games; COPPA; Apps and Goods:  Mike Trigg, hi5, Brian Balfour, Viximo, Mihr Shah, Offerpal, Adam Caplan, Super Rewards..

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