Hasbro’s Littlest Pet Shop, a collectible toy brand that originally launched more than 30 years ago, is making its retail comeback after being discontinued in 2018.
Littlest Pet Shop (LPS) will relaunch worldwide in December on online gaming platform Roblox through a collaboration with global toy marketer and the brand’s master toy licensee Basic Fun!, Hasbro and Suit Up Games, a Roblox development studio, according to a media release. The partners have created an immersive pet simulation experience where users can virtually collect the bobble-headed animals.
"There has been a gap in the Roblox marketplace for a pet simulation game leveraging the pet collector genre,” Ross Targett, general manager of Suit Up Games, said in the release. “It was serendipity when Basic Fun! approached us about a partnership, as we were keen to enter this space in a big way. By collaborating with Basic Fun!, we get to do it with a global cross-generational brand like LPS that has collecting pets at the heart of its DNA.”
The December release of the Roblox experience will kickstart a global marketing campaign to relaunch LPS to kids and collectors around the world. Basic Fun!, in partnership with global distribution partners such as Bandai, will take the toy program to more than 20 countries as early as spring 2024, with over 140 bobblehead pets to collect, including new characters, packs and playsets.
"Over the years, we've seen huge demand to bring Littlest Pet Shop back — especially from fans who grew up with the brand in the '90s and 2000s who want to connect with the newest generation through the universal language of play," Bradley Bowman, senior licensing director, global toy and games at Hasbro, said in the release. "Basic Fun! has been a fantastic partner in keeping our classic brands alive and relevant as ever, so it was natural to entrust them with the relaunch of Littlest Pet Shop as we expand into the 'phygital' world."
LPS has sold more than 1 billion pet toys and collectables worldwide since the brand's initial more than 30 years ago, per the release. At its peak, it offered more than 3,000 pets to collect, display and trade.
"In reimagining Littlest Pet Shop for a modern audience, it was clear that we needed to meet today's kids and kidults where they are,” Eugene Evans, senior vice president, digital strategy and licensing, Wizards of the Coast, Hasbro, added. “Roblox connects tens of millions of people every day for immersive and shared digital experiences, so it was natural to engage this community as we bring back the beloved brand on a global scale.”
Basic Fun! offered a sneak peek of the new LPS product line, as well as the Roblox experience, at the industry event, Toy Fair, which was held in New York from Sept. 30 through Oct. 3.