13 toys for 10-year-old boys that make great gifts

April 2, 2019

Shopping for a gift for a 10-year-old boy? If you’re struggling to come up with some good ideas, the first step is to look to his favorite pastimes for inspiration. Also know that at about age 10, kids tend to love toys that involve physical play, says Laurie Chartorynsky, a spokesperson for the Toy Association, a toy industry trade association. So think hands-on, and look for gifts that will get his body and mind moving — and, of course, that have that “cool factor” pre-teens crave.

“This is the age where kids are really exploring hobbies and interests and practicing self-expression,” Chartorynsky says. “Some general examples of toys [for 10-year-old boys] are sports-related outdoor toys, construction sets, science kits, remote-controlled/app-enabled toys and strategy-based board games.”

These are Chartorynsky’s picks for toys and games that make perfect gifts for 10-year-old boys. Plus, find out why each gets a seal of approval from my favorite almost-10-year-old boy: my son, Ryan!

1. Professor Maxwell’s 4D Science Augmented Reality Science Lab

Image via Amazon

This science kit walks kids through both old-school and trendy science experiments, like a volcano eruption and making slime, with all the equipment they need to pull them off (beakers, baking soda, measuring cups and more). The instruction book can be viewed on a smartphone through special goggles that create an “augmented reality” experience.

In addition to the science lab, there’s a chemistry set and a chef set (sold separately), which teach kids about food science and nutrition and empower them to make better food choices, says Chartorynsky. Soon to launch: a “galaxy” kit for space-obsessed kids. All cool toys for boys at age 10.

Why it’s cool, according to a real 10-year-old boy:

“It’s fun to do experiments. I like that it helps you understand what’s happening and why it happens. And the goggles — that’s obviously cool.”

Where to buy: Professor Maxwell’s 4D Science Augmented Reality Science Lab ($32, Amazon)

2. Fortnite Turbo Builder Set

Image via Amazon

You’d be hard-pressed to find a 10-year-old boy who isn’t a teensy bit obsessed with Fortnite. And since we’re all aiming for a little less screen time, we might as well feed their obsession with some toys they can play with IRL.

Any Fortnite action figure makes a great gift for 10-year-old boys. This set, in addition to Jonesy and Raven figures, comes with pieces to build structures and fortresses that kids can dream up themselves.

Why it’s cool, according to a real 10-year-old boy:

“That’s awesome because, in Fortnite, you get to build. You can built forts and stuff and pretend like you’re actually in the game. If you had a few [building sets], you could build a whole world!”

Where to buy: Fortnite Turbo Builder Set 2 ($56, Amazon)

3. MorfBoard Skate/Scoot Combo

Image via Amazon

The MorfBoard isn’t just a skateboard or a scooter — it’s both. By switching out a few pieces, it easily converts from one to the other and back again. (Even a 10-year-old can do it.)

Imagine your kid riding his scooter to the skate park, converting it into a skateboard and then switching it back for the trip home. There are extra extension kits you can buy separately to convert it to a balance board that rides on top of a special roller or a bounce board that gets air thanks to two air-filled balls that attach to the base.

Why it’s cool, according to a real 10-year-old boy:

“I like that you can take it anywhere and do whatever you want with it. I would get the bounce extension so I could hop on it.”

Where to buy: MorfBoard Skate & Scoot Combo ($80, Amazon)

4. Stikbots With Tripod

Image via Walmart

Stikbots may seem like simple toys for 10-year-old boys. After all, they’re posable figures with suction cups on their hands and feet. And they can be no-frills if your kid wants to play with them on their own. But when used with the Stikbot Studio app, your kid can create his own stop-motion animation movies.

There are lots of Stikbots to choose from, from single figures to themed movie sets; select based on your budget and you favorite 10-year-old’s interests.

Why it’s cool, according to a real 10-year-old boy:

“Wow! You can make your own TV show. Maybe you can think like you’re a TV producer and you can use your own creativity. I really want to get that!”

Where to buy: Stikbots With Tripod ($24, Walmart)

5. This Game Goes to Eleven

Image via Amazon

This Game Goes to Eleven is a card game with a rock ’n roll edge and a clear goal: Try to total 11, without going over. If you’re successful, you stick your opponent with a pile of cards and end the game with the fewest cards in your hand.

Why it’s cool, according to a real 10-year-old boy:

“It sounds like there’s a lot of action in this game. It’d be fun to play with the family.”

Where to buy: This Game Goes to Eleven ($13, Amazon)

6. Tudor Games NFL Electric Football Game

Image via Tudor Games

You might remember this portable football game from when you were a kid. Not much has changed. Kids can create formations and set the direction they want their football players to move and then turn on the vibrations to set them into motion. Kids can choose the logo of their favorite teams to decorate their end zones.

Why it’s cool, according to a real 10-year-old boy:

“You get to make the plays and be the coach of the team. I would play this all the time with my friends if I had it. If you want to play outside and it’s rainy, you can play this inside instead.”

Where to buy: Tudor Games NFL Electric Football Game ($60, Tudor Games)

7. Dragon Ball Super the Dragon Stars Figures

Image via Quest Toys

For fans of anime, Dragon Ball Super is a must-watch show. And if you know a 10-year-old boy who has to have the latest swag, go for the new 6.5-inch figurines — including this Super Saiyan 3 Goku — that are poseable and even come with extra hands for more options.

Why it’s cool, according to a real 10-year-old boy:

“I think these would be a good gift for kids who like the show. But they’re not for a kid who’s not into it.”

Where to buy: Dragon Ball Super the Dragon Stars Figures ($22, Quest Toys)

8. Chickapig Game

Image via Chickapig

Here’s a board game that won’t leave a 10-year-old boy bored. Just the fact that there are “poop cards” and half-pig/half-chicken mutants gives this game a pre-teen laugh factor. The object is to get your chickapigs across the board and into the goal, all while blocking your opponents from doing the same.

Keep in mind though: The creators say the game works best with four players or four teams, which could be a con if you have a small family.

Why it’s cool, according to a real 10-year-old boy:

“It’s a strategy game. The reason I like it is it’s all about doing what you need to do to offend and defend. You can sometimes use other players, and other players can use you, and you really don’t know what can happen, which makes it fun!”

Where to buy: Chickapig Board Game ($25, Chickapig)

9. K’NEX Thrill Rides Clock Work Roller Coaster Building Set

Image via Amazon

With this building set, your 10-year-old boy can create his own roller coaster that will boast more than 2 feet tall. Then, set it into motion.

Why it’s cool, according to a real 10-year-old boy:

“It’s all about building and balance. This is good for kids who like to play with their race car tracks but want something different and a little more crazy.”

Where to buy: K’NEX Thrill Rides Clock Work Roller Coaster Building Set ($31, Amazon)

10. LEGO Star Wars Snowspeeder, 20th Anniversary Edition

Image via LEGO

LEGO launched new Stars Wars-licensed sets to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the brands’ partnership. These brick sets are going to be excellent picks for enthusiasts and collectors of both brands. Our pick is Anakin's Podracer set, which comes with 279 pieces, including three Star Wars characters and the bricks to build his own podracer.

Why it’s cool, according to a real 10-year-old boy:

“I like Anakin's Podracer because you can make your own scene from the movie. And I like all of [the LEGO Star Wars sets] because they all are like that — you can act out the movie but with your own twist.”

Where to buy: LEGO Star Wars Anakin's Podracer, 20th Anniversary Edition ($30, LEGO)

11. Warrior's Mark Axe Throwing

Image via Toysmith

Looking for something to keep a competitive kid busy? Take aim at this axe-throwing set. It might look intense, but relax. The axes are made of foam and stick to a fabric target with velcro. We can see kids spending hours perfecting their toss with this fun game, perfect for 10-year-old boys.

Why it’s cool, according to a real 10-year-old boy:

“This is a quick, simple game that you can play with your friends. The way the axe is going to move is going to be a lot different from a ball or a dart. So you’re going to need to throw it fast and it’s going to be hard to be precise.”

Where to buy: Warrior's Mark Axe Throwing ($25, Toysmith)

12. Nerf Elite Fortnite SP-L Blaster

Image via BestBuy

With the Fortnite craze going strong, we couldn’t resist including another licensed toy. Hey, maybe we’ll get more 10-year-old boys away from their video game consoles! This one has combined the kid fave Nerf with the hit video game, so we just know 10-year-olds are going to go wild for it.

Why it’s cool, according to a real 10-year-old boy:

“It’d be cool to feel like you’re actually playing the game. But you could play it with any blaster. It doesn’t have to be a Fortnite blaster to pretend you’re playing Fortnite in real life.”

Where to buy: Nerf Elite Fortnite SP-L Blaster ($20, BestBuy)

13. UNO Flip!

Image via Target

The new two-sided UNO deck features a “flip card,” which when played means all the cards get flipped over, including the ones in-hand, and then everyone plays on with the other side. The “dark” side of the deck has more trick cards, like “draw 5” and “skip everyone,” giving the classic card game an extra twist of excitement.

Why it’s cool, according to a real 10-year-old boy:

“I like regular UNO, but this is fun to try because it’s more unpredictable. You don’t know what’s going to happen. It has a little bit more action in it.”

Where to buy: UNO Flip! ($6, Target)

So, there you have it, gifts for 10-year-old boys with many different interests. And now I have to start shopping for my kid’s 10th birthday. At least I know what toys he wants!

Tips and stories from parents and caregivers who’ve been there.

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