Please pardon the far-too-dramatic title to this thread.
I was wandering around Toys-R-Us today, looking for a Lego set for my nephew and I to set up when he comes to visit next, when I once again saw it once again.
Lego games. "Board" style Lego games complete with dice and instructions on how to play.
Now, let me explain why seeing this irks me: When I was a kid, my friends and I didn't need a Lego board game set. We made our own games with Legos.
At just eleven and ten years old, before any of us had ever played a D&D style RPG, we would raid our parent's Yahtzee or Backgammon dice and create games with written rules, Lego 'dungeons,' and simple character sheets that listed our 'Lego guy's' abilities and weaknesses. (This would, of course, lead to arguments such as this: "No, he can't jump that far! He's just a wizard, not a thief!" - "Yes he can! Wizards can levitate!")
The point is that, as kids, we had to use our imagination and creativity. If we wanted to play a game with Legos (or most any other toy,) then we had to make it ourselves. Looking back, I now understand how important that sort of thing was for the development of my young mind. Without experiences like that, it might be fair to say that I may not have the desire nor the ability to create stories for the enjoyment of others.
Perhaps I'm dead wrong on this, but I really think that more and more toys allow little room for a child's mind to grow. I feel that children need playthings that help to build their creativity.
What do you think? Am I flat-out wrong, or are there instances where toys and games do little to encourage the use of imagination?