Disclaimer: It is not my intention to make you feel old as you read this. If you happen to feel that way as you look at your Christmas presents from 20 years ago, you are probably getting old. Sorry for breaking the bad news to you, but somebody had to do it.

Abby Ryan Design came up with a creative poster showcasing the most popular holiday toys of the past 50 years. While I find it to be extremely intriguing to follow the changing behaviors of generations via toys, the companies that are most successful in this are the ones that understand their demographics and what they want. Looking back at the past 10 years, the big brands that dominate the market are the ones that rule the toy market. Not only can Nintendo, Apple, Sony and Microsoft rule the market in their own niches, but they can also target specific audiences of varying demographics. That is what makes them the biggest brands of today.

Looking back a decade or two, Generation Y’s market demand is the one that made action figures cool, but it’s time for a shift. For example, the best toy in ’97, Tamagotchi is not only a pet (figure), but it’s a digital pet that you can carry around with you, feed and take care of while in school, on the playground and at home. This “late 90’s – early 2000’s” shift is most likely the reason for tablet popularity within this generation, and the tech savviness of Millennials.

Image credit: Abby Ryan Design