The time has arrived – we’re now at that point in the year when your Facebook page will be littered with statuses reading, “Only XX days till Christmas!!!”

Shops will creep selection boxes onto shelves like sleeper cells waiting to jump out at you with festive joy. And your kids will be tugging at your ankles for all the latest Christmas toys.

Indeed, the pressure’s on to impress your sprog when they wake up on Christmas morning.

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Just image their wide eyes growing even wider when they wake up on the 25th December as a veritable treasure trove of the latest toys is laid out before them. On such a special day, don’t you want to surprise them by getting exactly what they want and more?

But you’re dicing with danger if you think buying pressies at the last minute is a good idea. Have you ever seen your local Argos on a Christmas Eve?

It’s like a battle zone, all clamorous hands and festive humbugs wrestling for the last in stock of Monsters University action figures. You’ll have PTSD before Santa’s even had time to squeeze down your chimney.

You need a mini-guide to the toddler toys that’ll be hottest this festive season. Luckily for you that’s exactly what we’ve got.

The Force returns

Star Wars has always been a hot ticket for kids both young and old, but this year is set to see it hit its popularity peak – with the latest in the saga of movies opening this December, toy stockists will be rubbing their palms with glee by the end of the year.

Disney – which now owns the right to the film franchise – has rolled out a multimillion dollar marketing strategy to promote some of the coolest toys ever to come from a galaxy far, far away.

Many of these toys have moved beyond the simple action figures kids used to enjoy. The latest (and most impressive) toy to have been released in the run up to Star Wars is an interactive droid who will wander around with you and act entirely of its own volition when you don’t control it.

Who knows what other magic will be conjured by Disney’s marketing department when December arrives.

Mining a hot toy

For the past few years, Minecraft has dominated the toy market, giving kids the chance to build their own environments in grand online levels – the only limit to the game is the imagination.

If you want to aid your kids’ creativity, buy them a few real life building blocks so they can build physical structures in their room. And to stoke their enthusiasm, throw in a Minecraft goodie bag filled with playthings from their favourite game. It’ll be their favourite Christmas ever!

Written by Kevin Fullerton