The Best Gifts for Teenage Boys – 2020 Gift Ideas

The Best Toys and Gifts for Teenage Boys in 2018

As children move into their teen years, they want more sophistication and use from their gifts. Today teens tend to like and use tech gifts more than non-tech ones. Because of this, we’ll be focusing on the next tech gifts for a teen, from the most popular games and gadgets.

It is, of course, your job as a parent or guardian to monitor your child’s safety and screen time. Too much screen time isn’t good for kids because it can harm social skills when interacting face to face.

20 Picks For The Best Toys & Gifts For Teen Boys 2020

The Best Gifts for Teenage Boys – 2020 Gift Ideas

Eachine E58 Drone with Camera

The Eachine E58 is lightweight and has decent battery life. It takes a full hour to charge the battery from empty to full.

Pros

  • Simple to set up and use
  • Versatile for beginners

Cons

  • The battery doesn’t last as long as other models
  • Shorter range than other models

Remote controlled drones are a hot gadget for teens to have. Whether they’re raving to through the sky, having a leisurely flight or being used for aerial photography, drones provide teens with months or years of fun. The Eachine Drone with Camera is a basic start to any would-be drone pilot’s career.

With an easy-to-use takeoff and landing key, a hover mode, and fully functional controls, your teen will feel like he’s able to take to the skies. This drone also has a 720p HD camera with a wide-angle field of view. At 120 degrees, it’s easy to see what’s in the drone’s periphery.

The drone has four propellers, which is the necessary number for full control. Not only can it maneuver freely in space, but it can also do a few stunts if the pilot is skilled enough.

The Best Gifts for Teenage Boys – 2020 Gift Ideas

Mario Kart 8

Mario Kart 8 has multiple modes of gameplay like races, time trials, and battle mode wherein players use items to pop balloons around opponents.

Pros

  • Simple, family-friendly game
  • Variety of favorite Nintendo characters

Cons

  • May not appeal to gamers who don’t like racing games

Mario Kart has been a competitive video game mainstay since the days of the Super Nintendo. The iconic go-kart racing franchise has featured on every subsequent console, with the Nintendo Switch being the most recent.

Most of the characters in the Mario franchise are playable, as is a special guest star: Link from the Legend of Zelda series.

The biggest reason this game is a good gift for your teen is that it’s a game friendly title that still fills the desire for competition. Players can compete with others all over the world.

Overall, if you want to give your teen a game that he can pick up and play easily, Mario Kart 8 is one of the better choices. The fandom isn’t nearly as toxic as are those of some other game series that come to mind, so it’s less stressful.

The Best Gifts for Teenage Boys – 2020 Gift Ideas

Apple iPad

This toy from Apple has built-in Wi-Fi connectivity and 32 GB of internal storage. That’s plenty of room for your teen to store apps, pictures, and music.

Pros

  • Versatile tablet
  • Compact design easy for carrying around

Cons

  • Can’t use third-party apps

The Apple iPad delivers pretty much all the function of a computer while remaining compact enough to carry in a backpack, with a good case of course. Its touchscreen layout gives easy access to apps and contacts, so it can still function as a mobile phone in a pinch.

Apple has always had the image of being a status symbol. Without getting into which is better between iOS and Android, well just say Apple has a reputation for being popular among artists and other creative types.

To get apps for Apple, you’ll need to download them from the Apple store. No third party apps are supported.

The Best Gifts for Teenage Boys – 2020 Gift Ideas

VR Headset

This pair of goggles offers complete eye overage to let the wearer fully dive info the VR experience.

Pros

  • Easy to connect
  • Works on a variety of platforms

Cons

  • Does not offer audio stimulation the way higher-end VR headsets do

Virtual reality headsets let your teen experience world’s he wouldn’t be able to override. By connecting the VR headset to a smartphone with a supported app, the teen can use the fully immersed headset to play games or take virtual tours. The technology was popularized with the Oculus Rift, but other developers are catching up rapidly.

To use the goggles, simply open them and slip your smartphone into the compartment. The phone has to be about 4.5 inches long by 3 inches wide, and the display will split into two parts to acclimate to the reduced field of vision and give each eye a leper view of the image. These goggles work with almost any Google application, including the Street Level Tour on Google Earth.

Some beloved games like The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim have gotten VR ports recently.

The Best Gifts for Teenage Boys – 2020 Gift Ideas

Acer Aspire E15 Laptop

The Acer Aspire E15 is among the lowest prices laptops you’ll find in a new condition.

Pros

  • Good all-around capabilities
  • Inexpensive for a starter laptop

Cons

  • Contains some parts that aren’t exactly state-of-the-art

If you want to prepare your teen boy for school or give him a computer with enough power to browse the Internet or play some decent games, take a look at the Acer Aspire E15.

It has a 15.6-inch display, which isn’t the same as playing on a big screen but is still decent enough for a starter laptop. When coupled with Intel 620 HD graphics, the laptop can show some high-resolution images for its size and power.

This computer has some components known for steady performance, even though they aren’t blazing fast. The 4 GB of DDR4 RAM is fast enough to keep up with even intense graphics.

This isn’t a high-end gaming computer. However, it should be enough to get your teen through school for a couple of years. The average lifespan of a laptop is around two to three years anyway, so it performs at an average level for its price point.

The Best Gifts for Teenage Boys – 2020 Gift Ideas

Assassin’s Creed: Origins

This game is the latest in the Assassin’s Creed series. This is not a game for younger players; save it for later teens (the game is rated Mature).

Pros

  • Large game world to explore
  • Potential for history education

Cons

  • Focused on violence
  • Some sexual content

As implied by the name there’s a lot of violence and death featured in this game. Assassins Creed: Origins takes place in Ancient Egypt and does more to teach the player about Egyptian history at the time of Cleopatra.

The game has a compelling narrative and main characters. Although there’s graphic violence, it serves the narrative, while wanton violence as you would find in other games is punished.

Assassin’s Creed: Origins includes a highly educational feature: The Discovery Tour. This is the first AC game in which such a mode has been featured. The player is free to wander Egypt at his leisure, getting interesting tidbits of information. He can also take a guided tour of landmarks like the pyramids of Giza, the city of Alexandria (now Cairo), or various other landmarks of Egypt.

The Best Gifts for Teenage Boys – 2020 Gift Ideas

PC USB Gaming Headset

This particular headset model has built-in bass for that extra hit of resonance.

Pros

  • Controls are easy to reach and remember
  • High-quality sound

Cons

  • May be too bulky for some

Of course, with all these games and computer software, your teen likely wants to hear the game from something other than tinny laptop speakers. This is where a good PC USB gaming headset comes in.

This headset includes a retractable mic; all the better to keep the mic from getting in the way while he’s downing a healthy snack or drink during an intense gaming session. Perhaps the best benefit is that it is Plug and Play; being a USB device, there’s no need to install drivers.

The Best Gifts for Teenage Boys – 2020 Gift Ideas

IQ Puzzler Pro from SmartGames

Pros

  • Fun mental challenge for teens and adults
  • Includes both 2D and 3D game boards
  • Suitable for solo or team play

Cons

  • Non-competitive
  • Not a trivia game

Do you know a teen who loves to learn? The IQ Puzzler Pro from SmartGames is a fun and fast-paced mental challenge. It features 120 questions and both a 2D and 3D game board. All pieces fit into a compact travel case for easy storage.

These are puzzle games, not trivia questions. They’re designed for just one player although many folks can play together as a team. The challenges are divided into five levels: Starter, Junior, Expert, Master, and Wizard. No two games play alike for practically unlimited hours of fun.

Teenagers are often feel bombarded with new information in school. It can feel overwhelming. Solving puzzles is a great way for a teen to increase their self-confidence and improve academic performance.

The Best Gifts for Teenage Boys – 2020 Gift Ideas

Airzooka Air Blaster

Pros

  • Shoots a big blast of air
  • Requires no batteries or electrical power
  • Safe for contact with skin

Cons

  • Has no educational benefits
  • No reliable way to aim

The Airzooka is extremely annoying – and that’s why it’s so fun. It shoots a ball of air up to 20 feet. Perfect for ruffling someone’s hair, blowing paper off a desk or otherwise causing mischief. It’s safe, quiet and entertaining.

While it doesn’t have any practical uses, it’s great for playing practical jokes. Bring an Airzooka to your next party. It requires no batteries or electronics. Plus, you’ll never run out of ammo!

The Airzooka is lightweight and only requires one hand to use. It makes almost no noise. While it does have a plastic site on top, aiming is far from precise.

The Best Gifts for Teenage Boys – 2020 Gift Ideas

LEGO Architecture New York City Skyline Collection

Pros

  • 598-piece set provides a fun challenge for older kits
  • Features major New York landmarks with loads of detail
  • Includes historical booklet

Cons

  • The large set does take time to build

LEGO is popular with people of all ages. This elaborate New York skyline has 598 pieces. It’s great for any teenager who loves LEGO, the Big Apple or engineering.

The level of detail is stunning. The skyline features the Flatiron Building, Chrysler Building, Empire State Building, One World Trade Center, the Statue of Liberty and more. When built, the set is 10 inches high, nine inches wide and one inch deep.

Aside from the LEGO bricks, the set also includes a detailed booklet with information on the design and history of each building. Note that it’s only compatible with other LEGO Architecture sets and is a different size than standard LEGO bricks.

The Best Gifts for Teenage Boys – 2020 Gift Ideas

Crystal Growing Experimental Kit

This STEM toy is ideal for science-oriented kids who want to practice creating things.

Pros

  • It comes with multiple types of crystal growths
  • Easy for any child to use

Cons

  • Mainly limited to kids who are interested in scientific paths

Crystals have long been popular display pieces, and this crystal growing kit can help your teen create a few to put on display. This is mainly a toy for children who are interested in science and can help them learn how to follow instructions during experiments.

The Best Gifts for Teenage Boys – 2020 Gift Ideas

Cards Against Humanity

This card game is great for breaking down barriers.

Pros

  • One of the most popular card games of all time
  • Excellent for breaking the ice between people

Cons

  • Only for older teens
  • More crude humor than some families are comfortable with

Cards Against Humanity is an extraordinarily popular card game where people select cards to create the funniest answer to each question. Although not appropriate for younger teens thanks to an abundance of adult humor, this party game can help break down barriers and encourage teens to talk freely about the things that are important to them.

Numerous game expansions are available if you end up enjoying this product, allowing for further fun.

The Best Gifts for Teenage Boys – 2020 Gift Ideas

Sensory Fidget Toys

Sometimes teen boys need a way to keep their hands and minds occupied, and this set provides plenty of options.

Pros

  • 22-piece set offers varying types of sensory stimulation
  • Durable toys stand up to extended use

Cons

  • Not needed by all teens
  • Some pieces less durable than others

Small Fish’s 22-piece set of sensory fidget toys is a little unusual for teen boys, but it’s perfect for teen boys who need added stimulation or something to hold and play with while they’re doing other things. It’s easy to tell teen boys to sit still, but the truth is that many of them really do need a way to stay occupied in otherwise-boring situations.

The real value of this product is the variety of products and types of stimulation it offers, ranging from simple squeeze balls to toys that require increasingly more attention.

The Best Gifts for Teenage Boys – 2020 Gift Ideas

Final Fantasy XIV

This award-winning MMO is playable in short bursts, making it well-suited to the busy teenage lifestyle.

Pros

  • An enormous amount of content and replayability
  • A famously friendly and welcoming community

Cons

  • Requires friends for the best results

Final Fantasy XIV is an outlier in the massively multiplayer online gaming world. At a time when other games are free-to-play and fill cash shops with microtransactions, Final Fantasy XIV is staunchly committed to a paid experience. However, that position has also led to the widespread acknowledgment of its fantastic story and an incredible variety of content to enjoy.

Aside from the game itself, Final Fantasy XIV is known for its friendly player base, many of whom are happy to help orient new players and teach them the ropes. That makes this game a far more positive experience. Final Fantasy XIV is available on multiple platforms, including game consoles and PCs.

The Best Gifts for Teenage Boys – 2020 Gift Ideas

Dungeons & Dragons Player’s Handbook

The classic roleplaying game is more popular than ever before.

Pros

  • It’s a highly engaging, social storytelling game
  • Teens rarely have trouble finding friends to play with

Cons

  • Moderately expensive outside the core products
  • Can be confusing to new players

Once considered the exclusive domain of nerds hiding in basements, Dungeons & Dragons has grown into a pop culture phenomenon beloved by players of all ages and interests. In an era of smartphones and texting, many people still prefer sitting down with friends to have fun, and few products enable that better than roleplaying games.

If you aren’t sure about playing a game like this one, ask your teen to find you some videos of other people playing so you can see what games are really like. You may be surprised by how many silly shenanigans teen boys will weave into their stories.

The Best Gifts for Teenage Boys – 2020 Gift Ideas

The Complete Cookbook For Young Chefs

This thoroughly-tested cookbook is ideal for new chefs.

Pros

  • Easy recipes are ideal for teen boys who are just learning how to cook
  • Covers everything from breakfast to dessert

Cons

  • May require spending a lot on ingredients
  • Some recipes too advanced for new cooks

This is arguably stretching the definition of a toy, but considering how much fun people can have in the kitchen, we decided that it’s close enough to count. This book by America’s Test Kitchen details dozens of simple recipes designed to teach young chefs how to prepare more of their own food.

In addition to serving as an introductory course on the culinary arts, this book is a great way to spend more time with your teenage boy and teach them skills that will be useful throughout their life. As a bonus, you can even start assigning some cooking duties to them, making this a win-win situation.

The Best Gifts for Teenage Boys – 2020 Gift Ideas

Deluxe Art Set

This is a great starter set for artists.

Pros

  • 143-piece set offers many colors to choose from
  • Helps support creativity with professional-grade tools

Cons

  • May not be the kinds of artistic tools your child wants
  • Too messy for some teens

For the artists in the building, few toys are better than a set of professional tools they can use to support their creativity. This 143-piece set comes with crayons, oil pastels, watercolors, and colored pencils, as well as some erasers and other basic tools. Together, these help create a kit suitable for many different art projects.

The supplies come in a sturdy, reusable wooden carrying case. Aside from protecting the supplies from jostling and breaking, this wooden chest is easy to repurpose for other things once your young artist uses up the supplies. It’s not too expensive, either, meaning you can help your teen feel like a professional without the expense of pro tools.

The Best Gifts for Teenage Boys – 2020 Gift Ideas

The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel I

This in-depth RPG series is famous for its dense, rich narrative.

Pros

  • Long, narrative-driven game
  • Part of an ongoing series

Cons

  • Often requires a significant time investment due to the length of the story scenes
  • Can be difficult to learn for some teens

The Legend of Heroes is one of the most densely-written roleplaying game series ever written, making it an outstanding choice for any teen boy who likes RPGs. This game series offers a complex, nuanced view of difficult social and political topics, backed by well-written characters and a rich, believable world that isn’t quite like anything else on the market.

This story is much larger than one game, and parts II and III are already available for platforms like the PlayStation 4 and PC.

The Best Gifts for Teenage Boys – 2020 Gift Ideas

Ring Fit Adventure

The perfect way to exercise while gaming.

Pros

  • An outstanding way to get exercise while playing video games
  • Suitable for players of all ages and fitness levels

Cons

  • More expensive than most other video games because of the additional accessories required
  • Not appropriate for all fitness levels

Nintendo’s Ring Fit Adventure is quite unusual for a video game, but like some of their previous products, it’s designed to promote physical fitness while letting people have fun. Kids often spend more time sitting down than they should, so games like this one get them both physically and mentally engaged.

Like most video games, however, this also requires investing in the correct console to play it on. This isn’t a problem if you already own the Nintendo Switch, but if you don’t, check to see if there are any other games you or your teen want before you invest in this particular toy. We suggest waiting to buy a gaming console until there are at least five games you want for it.

The Best Gifts for Teenage Boys – 2020 Gift Ideas

UtechSmart Venus Gaming Mouse

This handy accessory makes it significantly easier to play many computer games.

Pros

  • High-quality, long-lasting computer mouse
  • The large number of side buttons is ideal for complex games

Cons

  • Only available in right-handed design
  • Laser doesn’t pick up all surfaces

Like the headset earlier on our list, this isn’t a toy so much as an additional accessory. Many computer games have gotten more complicated over time and demand more inputs from the player to manage things adequately. That’s where MMO gaming mice, with twelve or more buttons on the side, come into the picture.

This is a great toy for teen boys if they already have the games they want but are struggling because they don’t have the right tools and accessories to play things well. UtechSmart’s gaming mouse is particularly high-quality, with robust customization, user-selectable colors, and a durable surface. This is a great mouse for amateur and pro gamers alike.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

How Developed are Teen Boys?

The teenage years span from 13 to 19 years old, during which boys go through a lot of changes. Puberty isn’t as much of a force to be reckoned with; the teenage boy has begun to get used to his newly adult body and how it operates. The days of awkward fumbling with disproportionately-growing limbs are over.

At this time, the teenage boy’s interests have mostly solidified, and he likely has a strong need to engage with friends rather than family. Nothing wrong with this; it’s a normal part of teen development.

Physically, teen boys have even more muscle and are more self-conscious about their bodies. They may be interested in physical fitness regimens to develop their muscles and look good to people they see as potential romantic partners.

Intellectually, teens have more capacity for abstract thought and complex problem solving than they did as younger children, but still haven’t fully developed mentally. Full mental development, in fact, doesn’t take place until the late twenties. In the meantime, you should try to foster teen development.

Emotionally, teens value their independence from the family and value gifts that aren’t necessarily toys in the sense we think of them. They want gifts that can be used for self-improvement or the development of a hobby.

Teen boys are prone to impulsive behavior and mood swings as hormones rush through his bloodstream. There can be a lot of emotional and aggressive energy; as a parent or someone else special in the teen boy’s life, you should try to give him gifts and toys that channel this extra energy and emotion in positive, constructive manners.

What Kinds of Toys do Teen Boys Like?

If the teenage boy still has interest in the same hobbies he had in earlier years, it can be a good idea to give him fully adult versions of the tools used in those hobbies. Some ideas are full-sized high-quality musical instruments, new tech tools like a laptop or phone (these are also useful for school), a more in-depth video game, or sports equipment that’s designed to take full-strength use.

Teenage boys can be difficult, because they’re concerned about their image and may feel pressured to use or display the gifts you buy them, and if they think they’re ‘uncool’, they might hide them when friends are over. Have conversations with your teen to get a feel for his interests and the things he wants or look online for ideas.

Teens appreciate electronics like game consoles, games, laptops, and phones. Their competitive streak extends to video games. Teens like to have long game sessions with their friends or other players they meet online. Winning and getting game achievements gives them a sense of bragging rights.

Teen Safety

The teenage years are a pretty impulsive time, especially for boys. If you give a lot of gifts that involve online activity like game consoles or laptops, you need to talk to the teen about Internet safety and etiquette.

Although society has largely moved on from the “everyone on the Internet is a dangerous person-in-waiting” phase, that fear isn’t without truth. Even gaming can lead to problems. Toxic or angry players have been known to wreak havoc on hapless players’ lives, even going so far as to call the police as a prank.

Talk to your teen about how to maintain some level of privacy online, such as not posting excessive data to social media. In general, it’s not a good idea to provide personal information if possible. The privacy that comes from owning his computer or mobile device capable of Internet access carries with it a risk that you need to mitigate.

Competitive online gaming can foster anger when the player isn’t doing well. Teach him what is and is not acceptable: a common stereotype is that toxic players will use harmful slurs and hateful language. Avoid allowing a teen to engage in this behavior.

Some games can also be extremely immersive. MMORPGs like World of Warcraft and The Elder Scrolls Online can serve as a distraction from priorities like schoolwork. Even though these games foster a sense of teamwork and creativity, time spent playing them should be limited.

Moving away from electronic gaming, teen boys are still growing and can easily injure themselves if they play sports or engage in physical activity that’s too strenuous. Make sure your teen has the guidance of a coach or other instructor if he’s involved in sports.

Should I Let My Teen Pick His Own Toys?

As they get older, teen boys are increasingly interested in picking their own toys and entertainment. This is a natural result of wanting to feel like an adult and not something you should worry about. However, it does make things harder on you if you want to buy a present for them.

Instead, take a look at their recent interests, including the kinds of television or movies they watch, the games they play, and what they buy with their own money or allowance. Limit this to anything they’ve done or bought within the past two years because the interests of teenage boys often change over time.

Once you know what they’re interested in, try to get more toys of the same type when you’re shopping for gifts. Don’t be afraid to simply ask them what they want to try doing, either.

For example, many teenage boys are increasingly interested in products like the Dungeons & Dragons Roleplaying Game, which they see as a fun way to spend time with their friends. However, because of the game’s completely unwarranted past stigma, they may worry that you don’t understand their views on it and that you will get upset if they mention what they really want.

The reason this sort of thing really matters is that the teenage years are what will shape your teen’s perception of you for the rest of your lives. If you are uplifting and supportive, they’ll form a closer bond with you. However, if they feel like you don’t really listen to them, they may feel like they have no choice but to push you away.

Don’t let your teen pick any toys you know are harmful to them. However, at the same time, be willing to let them demonstrate the product. You might find out that the toy they want is better or safer than you originally thought, and your teen boy will genuinely appreciate that you’re giving them a chance to say what they want.

In Conclusion

Teenage boys are in the process of becoming grownups. They want their possessions to reflect this fact while still retaining a sense of ‘coolness’ that their older toys may not have for them anymore. As long as you know what the teen boy in your life likes, you can buy him a gift, he’ll enjoy and appreciate.

Brett Gordon
 

The brains behind The Toy Report. Having clocked tons of time in toys research and online resource development, today, Brett is dedicated to making The Toy Report a trusted space in the world of toy reviews and recommendations.