Forty Childhood Toys That Are More Valuable Than You Realize

When you think of valuables, the last thing that usually comes to mind are Mcdonalds Happy Meal toys. Regardless, your basement might be full of collector’s items just waiting to be plundered. Finally pick up all of those boxes your parents have been bugging you to drag out of their attic and find some hidden treasures from your past that might be worth a fortune today!


The 1908’s: Age of Action

Many collectors are fueled by nostalgia for their past, so chances are some of your favorite action figures and dolls are highly sought as collectibles. However, for many of these valuables to retain their worth they need to be in their original box as if waiting to hit store shelves. Check to see if you have one of these many action figures viewed as collector’s items:


  • Masters of the Universe: Skeletor
  • Jurassic Park figurines and dinosaurs
  • Luke Skywalker with extendable lightsaber
  • Masters of the Universe: Wun Dar
  • She-Ra, Princess of Power and her horse, Swift Wind
  • Boba Fett with firing rocket backpack
  • Transformers original action figures
  • Masters of the Universe Eternia Playset
  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles action figures


Dressed For Success

Dolls and stuffed animals are other good sources for mining childhood valuables. In the past, these might have helped you get to sleep but today they can be worth a pretty penny. It helps to have hair, fur, clothes, and fabrics unstained and look fairly unworn. For stuffed toys like Teddy Ruxpin, having the electronics and other interior components in mint condition helps as well. Here are some of the more popular dolls and stuffed animals that can be profitable finds:


  • American Girl discontinued editions
  • Teddy Ruxpin
  • Furby
  • Cabbage Patch Kids
  • Gem and the Holograms
  • Rainbow Brite accessories and dolls
  • Beanie Babies (specific varieties)
  • Strawberry Shortcake


A Library of Value

Children’s books are often some of the first things to get destroyed as tenacious tykes find pages perfect for crayons or covers begging to be torn free of their bindings. As such, first edition books are considered valuables by parent and true collectors alike. In addition, cards like Garbage Pail Kids may have seemed like useless pieces of cardboard to your parents but to modern day archivists they are priceless treasures. These comics, cards, and books make excellent collector’s items:


    • First Editions of the Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling
    • Garbage Pail Kids
    • Magic: The Gathering card game
    • Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak, First Edition
    • Action Comics #1
    • Pokemon card game cards


Electronic Bells and Whistles

The 80’s saw an explosion of what is ubiquitous today: electronic gaming. In order for these items and other electronic toys to remain valuable, they need to retain their functionality. Cords should be original, whole, and unfrayed, battery terminals should be free of corrosion, and buttons should be easily pressed. You may still have one of these valuable electronic devices:


  • Atari console and games
  • Nintendo/Sega/Playstation/XBox game cartridges and disks
  • Lite-Brite
  • Model Trains
  • Nintendo brand consoles and accessories
  • Tomagachi/Digi Mon


Vintage Toys

When collectors discuss vintage items, they usually refer to things from over forty years ago. Because of the nature of toys, they are often abused as they are played with, dropping their worth considerably. Items from the Sixties, Fifties, and even earlier can be quite valuable if they are still in good working order and their paint and decals look fresh and new. Here are a few of the more lucrative toy finds from the old days:


  • First Edition Barbie
  • Push Cart Pete by Fisher Price
  • Vintage Hotwheels cars
  • Early editions of Monopoly
  • G.I. Joe 12” figures


Raiders of the Last Toy Chest

There are many, many more valuable toys that collectors seek out that are both eclectic and surprising. Try to remember what you found especially fun but may have been an item that was of little worth and may have been thrown away. These often find themselves on the top of many lists because they are easily lost or considered disposable:


  • McDonald’s toys
  • Super Soakers
  • Complete Lego Kits
  • Colorforms
  • Playmobil
  • Pez Dispensers


Your youth was full of fun and adventure, mainly due to the toys you cherished. If you managed to hold on to your former prized possessions, see if they are in good enough condition to be considered valuables. Maybe sifting through those old boxes will stir some emotions, and you might even find that you’ve been transformed into a collector yourself!