What do you get for those hard to shop-for 8- to 16-year-olds? Toy Insider Associate Editor Maddie Michalik stopped by “Sunrise” on NBC in Indianapolis to talk about the best gifts for the older kids on your shopping list. For more on the items featured in this segment, check out the product notes below, and for our complete rundown of the best gifts for the holidays, check out our complete holiday gift guide.


  • Wirelessly stream audio from up to 30 feet with this light-up Bluetooth speaker. With powerful sound performance, this speaker lets Star Wars fans answer and end calls with a speakerphone feature.
  • This Star Wars-themed speaker is carefully modeled after Poe Dameron’s X-Wing Starfighter, and features details fans will appreciate, including four wing-mounted laser cannons and a blacked out cockpit.
  • There’s no auxiliary cord or cable required, so teens can enjoy their music in one room while they’re in the next. The base will even light up when music is playing.
  • And when their hands are full, teens can utilize the speakers’ voice activation feature, which works with Siri and Google Now.
  • Ages: 12+
  • MSRP: $49.99
  • Available: Best Buy


  • Kids can bring the fun of Splatoon to life with the all new Splatoon Splattershot Blaster.
  • Each Splattershot Blaster can fire the water based compound up to 30 feet away.
  • Set includes a pair of Inkling Goggles and two compounds, good for up to 100 shots (50 shots each).
  • Ages: 8+
  • MSRP: $29.99
  • Available: Amazon, Target, Toys “R” Us, Walmart


  • DropMix lets you play music like never before! This fast-paced music mixing game gives you a new way to collect, discover and combine favorite tracks. Compete with your friends (up to 4 players) and create unexpected song mixes! Keep the music pumping with 3 ways to play: freestyle, clash, and party.
  • The DropMix Music Gaming System includes the DropMix board and 60 DropMix cards, and the free downloadable app controls the game. The included DropMix cards let you mix songs from top artists, including: Bruno Mars, Childish Gambino, Disturbed, Ed Sheeran, Imagine Dragons, Sam Hunt, Sia, The Weeknd, and more. Look for Discover Packs and Playlist Packs to expand the mix possibilities with more DropMix cards! (Each sold separately. Subject to availability.)
  • Ages: 16+
  • MSRP: $99.99
  • Available: Amazon, Best Buy, Toys “R” Us, Walmart


The conversation later continued on Facebook Live with even more hot holiday toys.



  • The Merge Cube is the world’s first holographic object kids can hold in the palm of their hand. Kids can play, learn, and explore in magical new ways.
  • Download apps using a tablet or smartphone at www.MergeCube.com, view the cube through your device’s camera, and watch the Merge Cube come to life as it transforms.
  • The Merge Cube experience can be upgraded by selecting the optional virtual reality mode and sliding a smartphone into virtual reality goggles to completely immerse yourself in holographic worlds.
  • Ages: 10+
  • MSRP: $14.99
  • Available: Walmart