You remember the classics don't you? Classics are the things that you fondly recall
when unenlightened, that you pick up to feel better, to get inspired, to enrich one's
mind. Well. The classics are getting updated from Barbie ads to Playmobil toys. In
fact, this morning (Thursday, February 11, 1999), I spent in the Princess Suite at the
Sheraton listening intently to product managers and vice presidents of companies
elaborate on the lovely event of collaborating on three new interactive CD-ROM
games for children. Laura's Happy Adventure, Alex Builds His Farm and Hype--The
Time Quest are all based on Playmobil's internationally known and much-loved toys.
Alain Tascan, producer Playmobil Game Series at Ubi Soft Entertainment passionately
spoke of how their target is quality and that they are trying to achieve the respect of
the children and of the games. Kai Perlinger, new media products manager Playmobil
spoke of how one of their challenges for this project was to take those squatty Little
People into 3D characters. Vice president, third party relations of 3Dfx, Darlene
Kindler helped us understand a bit more about the 3D graphics cards that assisted in
the production of these games and Robin Raskin, editor-in-chief of "FamilyPC"
presented a fun slide show on the history of games, starting with Pong. She spoke to
how we have evolved from games that simply showcase technology and seem
targeted for a sub-set of humans to ones that have plot mixed in with technical
wizardry. After receiving a warm, snuggly Polartek jacket, a copy of Laura's Happy
Adventures and a special edition Little People Laura, I swung by the Toy Building,
which had the Rumpus Road Rocket (www.rumpustoys.com) polka-dotted painted bus
parked outside and a Furby-billboard decorated newsstand. Milia Schmilia! Let's go to
the Toy Fair!