One of the most buzzed about new toys of the year has finally... hatched.
Interactive creatures called Hatchimals have become one of the most wanted toys of the year, according to industry experts.
Until now, parent company Spin Master has guarded the toy inside a large plastic egg.
The promise was that -- when the time was right -- a little creature inside would break out on its own.
To get these eggs to hatch, kids must interact with its shell, which features touch technology.
When you tap on it, the Hatchimal taps back. When you stroke the top or bottom, it lights up and makes sounds.
There are two families of Hatchimals -- Pengualas and Draggles -- and as the names suggest, their look is inspired by penguins, koalas and dragons.
Almost all stores are sold out but Amazon has a page devoted to third-party sellers with Hatchimals available.
The company has posted an update online saying it is making the toys as fast as they can and hope to have more available soon.
The consumer response to Hatchimals has been extraordinary, exceeding all expectations. Some of our first shipments have already sold out. While additional product will hit retail shelves in November, we anticipate this inventory will also sell out quickly. We have increased production and a whole new batch of Hatchimals will be ready to hatch in early 2017. This is a special season and we don’t want anyone to be disappointed, nor do we support inflated prices from non-authorized resellers. We are working on creative solutions to help kids and their parents withstand the wait. In the interim, some retailers are developing pre-sale and/or rain-check programs for redemption in January. We will continue to update with program details as they become available.
When they're ready to hatch (usually after 30 minutes of continuous play), it'll do so on its own.
The Hatchimal pecks on the shell -- loudly and with force, rotating its head to strike at different spots.
Eventually, the beak breaks through enough to lift the top part of the egg.
"As far as we know, a toy that's able to hatch on its own hasn't been done before," James Martin said, head of Spin Master's robotics unit.
A Hatchimal's behavior matures over a couple of days and weeks. It becomes a toddler and eventually, an adult Hatchimal.
As a baby, you feed it by touching its beak to the floor. It becomes more interactive as a toddler. It'll dance, repeat your words and move when you clap your hands. The Hatchimal will play games with you in its grown-up stage.
Spin Master is known for its innovative approach to toys.
Two years ago, its robotic interactive toy Zoomer was hit among kids, followed by the success of Meccanoid -- a programmable walking, talking personal robot.
The company said it took two years to develop the Hatchimals. This included selecting the perfect hatching time for each egg.
"Kids don't have a lot of patience," Martin said. "We didn't want it to take too long [to hatch], but we also didn't want it happen too fast."
It also wanted to avoid kids giving up on the toy right after it hatched.
"We put a lot of effort into ensuring that the play went much beyond the hatching," Martin said.
Unlike many other interactive toys in the market, Hatchimals don't interact with an app.
"This was a conscious decision on our part," said Smith. "Kids already have a lot of daily screen time. We didn't want to add to it."
Jim Silver, a toy industry expert, has already pegged Hatchimals as one of the must have toys of 2016.
"Almost 20 years ago, we had the Tamagotchi virtual pet you had to hatch and take care of," he said. "Hatchimals is like that but brought to life."
The company said it hopes to add more hatching creatures to the Hatchimals family soon.