For many people, Hatchimals just went from being the holiday season’s hottest toy to being one of the most heartbreaking presents around.
Dozens of parents are now speaking out about malfunctioning Hatchimals after their children unwrapped the toy and realised they could not convince the robotic critters to hatch.
One of the things that made Hatchimals one of the most in-demand presents this holiday season is the hatching process. Hatchimals are sold still encased in their eggs. Users have to play with and nurture the egg for up to an hour, listening to the cooing Hatchimal inside as it pecks its way out of the shell.
However, according to many parents, the hatching never occurred — and at least one is now threatening to sue the maker of Hatchimals.
Nicole Kijurina, a mother in Canada, told Business Insider that she purchased three Hatchimals. She kept two for her daughters, and donated one to a family in need.
“Of course no good deed goes unpunished,” Kijurina told Business Insider. “To my surprise both of my Hatchimals for my girls did not hatch. One just kept [flashing] red eyes [through the shell] and the other wouldn’t spin or move. I ripped the eggs open as requested by both my girls who were crying and heartbroken, because let’s face it, the hatching is the best part.”
If Spin Master — the creator of Hatchimals — does not respond to Kinjurina’s email asking for assistance by January 3, she says she plans to file a class action lawsuit against the toy maker seeking compensation.
Kinjurina isn’t alone in her struggles. The toy maker’s Facebook page has been flooded with angry comments.
“The gift was given and excitement raged… excitement turned to depression and sadness,” reads a comment from one disappointed buyer. “My granddaughter tapped and turned upside down her egg for hours. She followed the steps and after half a day it would not hatch… I was devastated. Had waited forever to see her smile and instead was greeted with a frown and a ‘it won’t hatch Papaw.'”
Others said that their Hatchimals did hatch — but only after a long effort.
“It’s bad! My nephew went to bed crying last night about his hatchimal that we have been trying to hatch since Christmas day!” one Facebook user said. “It just was sleeping in the egg, we hatched it ourselves this morning and it’s still just snoring and not doing anything else.”
Still others said their Hatchimals quickly broke after hatching.
“I had purchased a Hatchimal for my grandson for Christmas, it hatched and work for about 45 min when it shut down and refuses to wake up again,” reads one such comment. “My 7 year old Grandson is heartbroken thinking his ‘pet’ died. Can you please help make this right?”
Spin Master said in a statement to Business Insider Wednesday that the company is committed to resolving the issues and apologised to those dealing with malfunctioning toys.
“While the vast majority of children have had a magical experience with Hatchimals, we have also heard from consumers who have encountered challenges,” the statement reads. “We are 100% committed to bringing the magic of Hatchimals to all of our consumers. To ensure all queries receive a timely response, we have increased the number of Consumer Care representatives, extended our hours, and increased the capacity for callers in the queue to help prevent calls dropped due to the holiday volume.”
Angry parents are demanding replacement Hatchimals.
“I sincerely hope you will replace all of our defective hatchimals BEFORE releasing more to the stores!” reads one Facebook comment. “We waited in lines. We watched our kids cry on Christmas. We deserve to have our problems fixed before you cash in on more sales!”
Hatchimals were one of the most sought-after gifts this year. Retailers like Walmart and Toy-R-Us faced Hatchimal shortages. Some who managed to get their hands on Hatchimals resold the toys online for hundreds of dollars.
Hey @SpinMaster – have a hatchimal that died seconds after hatching. Replacing batteries/reset doesnt solve. What’s the recourse? pic.twitter.com/JfQjQtU1j7
— Garry Stevens (@garrystevens) December 26, 2016