Vintage Toys R Us

Pictorial of the 80's Toys R Us Experience
February 21, 2011
I had to go to Toys R Us recently to pick up a Star Wars Toy for my nephew and when I got into the store I realized something..... Toys R Us just ain't what it used to be.
Browsing the store now is like traveling in IKEA, you're stuck in a virtual maze of oddly bending toy isles that hold VERY LITTLE stock and even less selection.
I just don't get the redesign of the stores, they screwed them all up with the intent of keeping you in the store longer by having to follow a set path so the consumer sees more product... SO STUPID!
I understand that some of the Toys R Us stores OUTSIDE of New York that didn't close weren't redesigned and still have the original lined up isles setup. Well for those of you that remember the Vintage Toys R Us, the floor to ceiling toys, the isles that seemed to NEVER END here is a now and then pictorial of Toys R Us.......

The NEW Toys R Us design is targeted for MASS exposure to a wider variety of toys BUT with the absence of MASS product. What that means is more selection in terms of product diversity but fewer stock of each selection, because Toys R Us does the majority of their business ONLINE. Did I say I HATE the new store design?
Here is the NEWER stores layout. Ok I admit they do look cool on the outside BUT looks can be deceiving.....

Now for the inside... I swear this place is a maze. the first 2 pics below show a deceiving picture of what the isles look like now, Yeah straight isles right? NOT... they're a quarter the length of the 80's Toys R Us isles and don't hold nearly the same stock....

The isles really loook more like this, little nooks shaped like a big U, showcasing a specific product...

Even this "midway isle doesn't come close to vintage Toys R Us glory...
Now I don't know about you guys but when I was a kid and I walked into Toys R Us it was like a Toy Warehouse, I mean the isles were so long and so tall that the toys just seemed to go on forever. And the amount of product on the shelves was INSANE, as you'll clearly see in a moment. It was a cornucopia of kid coolness!

Now the first thing that got us excited in the car was seeing that god awful BROWN Toys R Us sign. it was so god awful that we loved it to death, and it got us CRAZY just to see it, and we aren't even in the parking lot yet!

And as we drive into the lot you caught your 1st glimpse of our childhood equivalent to Superman's Fortress of Solitude....

Once inside your adrenaline started pumping and we could hardly contain ourselves... GET ME TO THE ACTION FIGURE ISLE! LOL how many races I had with my friends only to arrive at the sight I can not count....
Notice in the 1st pic below the amount of GI-Joe figures out for sale AND if ya look close on the right you'll see the coolest jet ever produced for a toy, the F-14A GI-Joe Skystriker!

Oh My God the absolute goodness in this view, and it only gets better!

Would you look at the amount of GI-Joe vehicles that are on those shelves!? It's kid insanity in all the best possible ways that this could be interpreted in! It was awe inspiring to see what seemed like miles of endless toys just waiting to come home with us!

Who remembers the good old days of Video Games when you went to the isle, grabbed a piece of paper with a bar code and the name of the game you wanted, and then you had to pay for it 1st and then collect the game at the "cage"? I remember it. HATED THAT lol cause many times the color sticker showing the game cover didn't show us the game graphics, and that SUCKED because we left it all up to chance as to whether or not the game would suck.

Is this not every boys childhood dream!? Look at the massive selection that was loaded on these shelves.
Being smaller aka a KID it is obvious to me now that the isles seemed endless, and they towered over us, BUT I say again look at all that product!? It's hypnotizing even now to look at these pictures because it takes me right back to being 9 years old in 1984. I get that same excited butterfly feeling even though I'm not going home with a new toy lol.

So, what happened to our Toy Castles? Why did they have to go Ka-Flooey? Internet Online Sales that's why. Alas all good things must come to an end BUT at least we can look at pictures like this and reminisce about the golden days of Toys R Us! If you have vintage Toys R Us pics of the retro isles UPLOAD EM' and share the wealth boys n girls lol.
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