Holiday Mashup Contest: Win a Free Game!

by Ruth Green-Synowic

What do G.I. Joe and broccoli have in common? Before your mind jumps to the conclusion that this crunchy green vegetable and heroic action figure are just a random, haphazard pairing of things, stop and take a closer look.  You’ll start to discover similarities between the two that you hadn’t thought of: they both wear green; their heads look similar – at least the flocked hair version of Joe does; and, they both ‘stalk’. Even seemingly nonsensical things have the potential to appear reasonable under the right lens.{jcomments on}

Brocolli StalkerPutting one or more elements together with the intention of creating something new can be fun, but it’s also a great method of discovery, innovation and invention for young and old alike.  ‘Mashing’ things is a popular trend that has infiltrated many aspects of pop culture today including music, art, film, television, advertising, literature and food, and it may also be considered a type of disruptive thinking.

With similar origins to that of an innovation or new invention, mashups are the result of seeing or thinking about things in a different way or a new light.  In a mashup, common or dissimilar objects morph into almost anything; based entirely on one’s imagination and interpretation.  When toys and games are added to the equation, the end result is sure to be playful. Many mashed items on the market today are the result of someone combining toys and games to create real products such as:  purses, jewelry, wearables, storage containers, furniture, and even houses.

So how about engaging in a fun and unusual activity with the kids and family this holiday season?

phantom opGather ‘round the fireplace, put your noggins together and create a toy or game mashup. It can be as simple as combining two items and creating a unique name, or creating something based on a pun or a play on words.  Phantom of the Operation and the Circle of Life games pictured below are both good examples of creating mashups based on this premise. Perhaps cooking is your thing. 

All types of playful culinary mashups from game board themed cupcakes to more complicated Rubik’s cube-styled cakes exist, and more are waiting to be created. Use your skills and create a digital image, collage, drawing or painting of a mashup, or take a photo of a mashup you’ve observed or created. You may even find a mashup on the internet you think is really interesting and post that for everyone to see (please be sure to include the name of the person that created the mashup and the website address). 

Whatever method you choose, be sure to have your toy or game mashup created by December 31, 2012.

And, if having fun with your family isn’t reward enough, we’ll be awarding a prize to the winning entry. 

When you post your mashup to www.toymashup.com by December 31, 2012 you’ll become eligible for our prize.  Inventor Pat Matthews will be selecting a winner and sending them an autographed copy of his game, Distraction.

lionlife  rubik purse

So start creating the wildest mashup concoctions you can dream of using all sorts of subject matter: food, tools, nature, household items, you name it; just be sure to add a toy or game element. Don’t forget to stop by the Toy Mashup site and view creations posted by others as well.

So what do G.I.Joe and broccoli have in common? Well,…they can both be combined to create a toy mashup.  What that looks like, is entirely up to you!

Happy Holidays Everyone!


Ruth Green-Synowic has designed and developed toys for over 20 years, including thousands of toys delivered in McDonald’s Happy Meals around the globe.  Her website, www.toymashup.com was created to provide toy and game enthusiasts with a place to display their creativity and innovative thinking as well as somewhere to visit for the occasional chuckle.

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