NES Classic Edition And Hatchimals Are The Latest In A Long List Of Sold-Out Hot Holiday Gifts

If your children (or you, we won’t judge) have the NES Classic Edition game console or Hatchimals on their wishlist for Santa, you might be out of luck. They are completely sold out, and it is uncertain when Santa’s elves will be creating the next batch. The NES Classic Edition and Hatchimals are not the first toys to be this popular, and they certainly won't be the last. Here is our list of some of the most high-in-demand, hard-to-find toys in holiday seasons past.

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Cabbage Patch Kids
Many toys throughout the twentieth century were incredibly popular, however, Cabbage Patch Kids were really the first toys to create chaotic shopping frenzies. Cabbage Patch Kids were originally created by artist and businessman Xavier Roberts in 1978. By Christmas of 1983, parents were scrambling to get their hands on one of the three million dolls that had been produced. Fights broke out at toy stores and the dolls sold for ten times their market value on the black market. Today parents can pick up a new Cabbage Patch Kid for roughly $8, however, the original dolls can fetch up to $500 on eBay. 

cabbage patck kid

The original Gameboy was first released in 1989 and was an immediate hit. In its first two weeks in Japan, its stock of 20,000 was completely sold, while 40,000 units were sold in the United States on its first day of release. Nintendo sold millions of the devices by Christmas. Today, 116 million Gameboy’s have been sold worldwide.
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Super Nintendo
Nintendo was on a roll in the late 80’s/early 90’s. The Super Nintendo helped to cement their reign in the 1990’s. Nintendo's initial shipment of 300,000 units sold out within hours in Japan. A similar pattern followed in the United States and the United Kingdom. The SNES was a global success and the best-selling console of the 16-bit era despite its late start and fierce competition. In total, 49.1 million units were sold worldwide.

super nintendo

Tickle Me Elmo
The Tickle Me Elmo phase of 1996 still haunts many parents today. Tickle Me Elmo was released in July 1996, with a supply of 400,000 units. The toys sold well but continued to remain in stock for a few months. Suddenly, the day after Thanksgiving, the doll was completely sold out thanks to a plug from celebrity Rosie O’Donnell. Two women were arrested in Chicago for fighting over the doll, while a store clerk at Wal-Mart in Fredericton, Canada received a few broken ribs during a stampede. By Christmas, Elmos were appearing on the black market for as much as $7,100 USD. 


Almost every 90’s kid had a Tamagotchi, the keychain-sized virtual pet simulation game created in Japan by Akihiro Yokoi. At its height, fifteen Tamagotchis were sold every minute in the United States and Canada. Tamagotchis were accused of disrupting classes and, once the Tamagotchi Connection Version 2 had been released, encouraging gambling. By 2010, over 76 million Tamagotchis have been sold worldwide.


1998 was the year of the Furby, the creepy gibberish-speaking robotic toy. The toy was constantly hyped on television and created quite a demand. Tiger Electronics only produced 2 million Furbies in 1998 and quickly sold out. Some Furbies went for as much as $300 online once supplies had dwindled. Over 40 million Furbies were sold in its first three years alone. The United States government even accused Furbies of being Chinese spies. Ironically, Furbies only now fetch half their retail price on eBay.