Think back to where you were a year ago and what you were doing with your yoyo. Were you constantly pausing a youtube video of Gentry Stein as you try and learned every single trick in his routine? Were you using your a paper weight to keep your student loans from blowing away? Or was it just in your pocket- ready and waiting for half of a free moment to practice any and every trick you can come up with?
I think that the strongest argument one came make for yoyoing being an art form- is that you can push yourself as far as you want to. It’s an endless battle, there is no end game. Sure, there are peaks and valleys, but there is no way to complete it. This is perhaps why we all love it so much. And also why it creates a vast community of people from all over the world.
That being said, things come and go in the yoyo world. For me, it’s strange to think that yoyojam won’t be coming out with any more yoyos. YoYoJam was YoYoSam’s second best seller this year, and I’m certain there will be a huge void with them gone. The YoYoJam Classic? SUCH A GOOD YOYO! And let’s be real- the dark magic! What will we do?! Throw on, I suppose. While it is sad, it really wasn’t much of a shock. They didn’t come out with anything too incredible in 2015, not like they had in years past. But one thing is fore sure, they made such a huge impact on the community that yoyoers will always know their name.
One of my favorites from their more recent collection. The YoYoJam Revival. An ironic name at this point, but still an awesome throw.
YoYoFactory was obviously another huge seller from the YoYoSam shop- which comes as no surprise to anyone. They rocked the Dream series this year, which I think had a big impact on their success. Their kickstarter campaign was a huge win. I question the whole titanium fad at times, but they did an awesome job at offering all kinds of perks, and people jumped on board in a big way. YoYofactory was then able to do more with the dream series. They know what folks want, and they do a lot for the newcomers to the yoyoing community, something I’m a big fan of. I imagine we’ll see a steady stream from them in 2016.
The kickstarter campaign really got community members involved and I think players like seeing the process before the yoyo was even put into production.
Since, I work for yoyoZEEKIO, anything I say about them is bias- but anything I say is bias anyway so I may as well just speak my mind. YoYoZeekio had an incredible year, the best it’s ever had, sales were awesome, the Saturn V won more contest that I can remember and the VOLT kinda changed the name of the bimetal game. Everything before the VOLT was… well…really really really expensive. The VOLT continues to soar, with the flare following close behind. I could not be more exited for what’s to come in 2016 for yoyoZEEKIO, we already have some incredible things lined up. I think the designs are getting better and we have an incredible team working closely with us at yoyoZEEKIO.
All our team members can’t seem to put it down.
One Drop is another company that really stands out in the YoYoSam sales standings. They always do well, and they are a huge supporter of the yo-yo Slam format Mitch and I have been working on. One drop treats yoyo manufacturing the way the top players treat yoyo playering. There is no end game- they just get better and better and better. I bought an M1 from them years ago and it was that yoyo that really got me exited about yoyo production. They know what they are doing, and I know they will continue to be one of the top brands int he community.
One drop does excellent manufacturing, we all know that by now. But they also market themselves really well. I mean look at that photo! I want one! NOW!
Snake bite yoyo strings have really done well also. They are awesome strings, I can’t say enough good things about them – so it’s no really shock to see them becoming increasingly popular. Made in Mexico, done right. They’ll elevate your game for sure. Kitty string, twisted stringz also continue be quite popular.
I could mention more companies, and I probably should- but these are the ones that stood out this year. Its sad to see yoyojam closing their doors. I wish the yoyojam family health and safety and hope that the decision to close up shop brings them positivity. I am exited to see the community fill the void that yoyojam will be leaving. Affordable, made in the USA plastics will be some tough shoes to fill.
But again, that’s what I love about this community, its full of people who want to add to it and make it better. With worlds being in Cleveland this year, I expect we’ll see companies all putting their best foot forward to impress this ever growing art form.