13 Best Spy Gear Sets For Kids – 2020 Reviews
Kids love to pretend that they’re spies, and they need the right props to help them do so. Picking the best spy gear sets for kids isn’t trivial, however. Some spy gear sets might be a bit too intense for your children. Others might be low quality or outright boring.
So, in this article we’ll discuss a handful of the best spy gear sets for kids so that you’ll know which spy gear sets your kids will use to become James Bond meets Carmen Sandiego—and which will make them feel like a dorky Mr. Bean.
- 2020 Best Kids Spy Kit Reviews
- Our #1 Pick – BirthdayExpress Secret Agent Spy Party Supplies
- Our #2 Pick – SpyX / Lazer Trap Alarm
- Our #3 Pick – Thames & Kosmos Master Detective Toolkit
- Our #4 Pick – Spy Gear Toys Spy Night Vision Goggles
- Our #5 Pick – Spy Gear Toys Video Walkie Talkies
- Our #6 Pick – ALEX Toys Undercover Spy Case Detective Gear Set
- Our #7 Pick – SpyX Micro Gear Set
- Our #8 Pick – Spy Gear Toys Gamma Mission Spy Kit Extreme Secret Agent Tool Set Bundle
- Our #9 Choice – Alex Super Sleuth Kit Kids Spy Kit
- Our #10 Choice – Yolyoo Spy Night Vision Goggles
- Our #11 Choice – SpyX Micro Eyes and Ears
- Our #12 Choice – Melissa and Doug On the Go Secret Decoder Deluxe Activity Set
- Our #13 Choice – Spy Gear for Kids UV Gear Kit
- Frequently Asked Questions
- Are spy sets good for active play?
- Are spy sets good for imaginative play?
- Are spy sets good for creative play?
- What spy sets should I avoid?
- What should I look for in a spy toy?
- What else should I know about spy toys?
2020 Best Kids Spy Kit Reviews
Our #1 Pick – BirthdayExpress Secret Agent Spy Party Supplies
The first step to becoming a spy or a secret agent is having something that is worth keeping safe—or identifying something that’s worth stealing, like this set of top secret party supply cases.
- Great for party favors
- Secret agent aesthetic
- Easy to make into a theme party
- Low durability
- Low replay value
This set includes four top secret boxes. Each box can be assembled into a verifiable piece of valuable intelligence that spies will be eager to claim. You can even inscribe the agent codename of the intended recipient onto the box.
The main issue with these boxes is that they’re intended to be disposable because they’re made of paper. So, while they’re great for casual spy play, vigorous spy play or repeated episodes of spy play will probably push these boxes beyond their limits.
Our #2 Pick – SpyX / Lazer Trap Alarm
Spies often need to set traps which alert them to incoming danger, and that’s where this SpyX lazer trap alarm comes in handy.
- Three trap modules and four separate laser beams
- Easy to use
- Great for advanced spy games
- Require batteries
- Difficult to customize alerts
To use these alarms, your budding spy can attach them to surfaces or set them up on the floor. The range of the laser tripwire is sufficient for indoor use, and you can expect a range of roughly four feet.
Upon breaking the laser tripwire, the traps emit a sound alarm or a flashing light which can notify the spy of an intruder. This set is great for endless amounts of spy play with friends or alone.
In fact, you could even set the traps up to let you know when your child or their friends are home. Or, you could set up the trap to protect something valuable, like the cookie jar. The possibilities are endless—but you’ll need to supply the traps with batteries regularly.
Our #3 Pick – Thames & Kosmos Master Detective Toolkit
Spies often need to keep investigating things much like a detective does. With this detective toolkit, your young spy will get a rich array of tools that will help them to investigate plots and piece together new intelligence.
- Contains a handful of different activities
- Includes carrying case and instructions
- Useful for non-spy play
- Some of the items in the kit may be too police-themed to be useful for spy play
With this detective kit, you’ll get evidence markets, police tape, fingerprinting chemicals, chalk, a fingerprint duster, petri dishes, and several beakers. The contents of this kit will help your young spy to figure out if they’re being tailed.
Young spies might also use this kit to dust a keypad for fingerprints so that they could get inside of a locked room without having the key. These possibilities will probably be obvious to your young spies, but you may need to provide an idea or two along the way to help them use the kit.
Overall, this kit has a bunch of great activities and tools included inside, but not all of them are relevant for spy play. For instance, the police tape appears to be distinctly for detectives rather than for spies, but that means that the kit is pluripotent as far as play opportunities go.
Our #4 Pick – Spy Gear Toys Spy Night Vision Goggles
Spies need to see in the dark, which is why these night vision goggles are one of the best gifts you can get to enable spy play.
- Looks cool
- Provides magnification
- Lights up in the dark
- Head strap may not be comfortable for all young spies
With this set of night vision goggles, your child will look like a real spy and be able to stand out in the dark. While the night vision goggles don’t make spies any better at seeing things in the dark, they do add a lot to the spy aesthetic.
With the help of two LED lights, the young spy’s eyes will look truly prepared for any kind of intelligence gathering or spy operation. The issue with these spy goggles is that some spies may have discomfort while wearing them on account of the head strap’s bulky battery pack.
Our #5 Pick – Spy Gear Toys Video Walkie Talkies
- Enables video calling between spies without wifi over short distances
- Better voice quality than the average walkie talkie
- Lightweight and durable
- Devours batteries
These video walkie talkies give your young spy and their friends the ability to video chat whenever they please, even when there isn’t any wifi connection or cellular signal.
The video quality of the walkie talkies is understandably poor, but the sound quality is good. Likewise, while the range of these video walkie talkies is relatively short, it’s more than enough for spy play around the home or potentially even the yard.
You’ll need to supply a lot of batteries for these video walkie talkies, however. The ability to transmit video requires a lot of power, and so you’ll be buying batteries airly frequently.
Our #6 Pick – ALEX Toys Undercover Spy Case Detective Gear Set
A big part of being a spy is knowing how to use encryption and ciphers to protect information. While it may not be the most glamorous part of being a spy, there are many young spies who will appreciate the possibilities enabled by this kit’s introduction to cryptography and basic tradecraft.
- Includes one-time pad and secret codes
- Enables many different spy activities
- Great for parties
- Not suitable for active spy play
- Some spies may not find the kit’s activities to be entertaining
In this undercover spy case detective gear set, your child will learn about the activities which occupy a lot of time for spies like codebreaking and transmitting coded messages.
The kit includes binoculars, invisible ink pens, pencils, code cards, a code booklet, fingerprint powder, a flashlight, and a magnifying glass. In short, with this kit your kids will be ready to communicate with each other clandestinely.
But, not all spies may appreciate these capabilities. For children who prefer to be running around or setting up traps for their enemies when they play as spies, this kit is probably a bit too sedentary.
Our #7 Pick – SpyX Micro Gear Set
Spy equipment is what separates great spies from the ones who don’t get the scoop. With this SpyX Micro Gear set, your children and their friends will have the equipment that will give them the edge when they’re spying.
- Four spy gadgets included
- Includes utility belt and gadget holders
- Great for lovers of spy gadgets
- Motion alarm
- Allows eavesdropping on conversations you may not want the spy to hear
This set of spy tech includes four separate devices: a micro ear light, an invisible pen, a motion alarm, and a listening microphone. In other words, it has something for every young spy. This means that the set is a great way to get your children started with spy play.
To keep the devices in one place, the spy kit also comes with straps which you spy can use to affix the devices to their person. This helps to prevent your spy from losing their valuable equipment.
There is one caveat with this spy kit, however. The spy kit includes a listening device which approximates a directional microphone.
The range of the microphone isn’t very much, but you should consider that your young spy might be able to genuinely spy on a conversation in your home while using it.
Our #8 Pick – Spy Gear Toys Gamma Mission Spy Kit Extreme Secret Agent Tool Set Bundle
If your young spy is looking for a spy set that is a bit different from the other spy sets on the market, this Spy Gear for kids Gamma Mission Kit might be up their alley on account of its more aggressive approach to spying.
- Includes four unique spy toys and a spy vest
- Great for outdoor spy games
- Encourages active play
- Devices don’t look very cool
- Foam dart gun may cause problems with other spies or adults
The Gamma Mission Extreme tool set bundle is best for young spies who love to run around outside while they play their spy games on account of its active play toys. In the spy kit, you’ll get a foam dart gun, a listening device, ninja stars, a spy vest, spy goggles, and spare foam darts.
The set is great because each of the toys included is high quality and could stand without the other toys as a good pickup for your child. Especially for spies who prefer to be active in their play, the ninja stars are endless fun.
You may worry that your spy might put an eye out using the foam dart gun, however. This concern is warranted, but if your young spy uses the spy goggles at the same time as the dart gun, they’ll be protected from any problems and look cool at the same time.
Our #9 Choice – Alex Super Sleuth Kit Kids Spy Kit
This kit is a must-have for aspiring spies to help them feel the part.
- Includes Rearview Glasses
- Includes spy activities to guide play
- Doesn’t come with a spy bag
This super sleuth kit is one serious kit for your spy kid. This kit helps children learn real spy techniques like how to take fingerprints and crack secret codes. It contains 80 pieces for serious spies in training. The kit includes fingerprint powder and an ink pad, a secret marker pen, magnifying glass, rearview spy glasses and a flashlight with batteries included.
A booklet helps kids learn 12 secret codes to crack, and an instruction booklet teaches children how to create composite ids, take fingerprints, and decode a secret message.
This kit is best for 8 to 10-year-old children. They’ll get a kick out of using the rearview spy glasses. They’ll also enjoy cracking codes, hunting for fingerprints, and sending secret messages. Your little spies will amuse themselves for hours, all while honing critical thinking and problem-solving skills.
The only flaw with this set is that it doesn’t come with a spy bag to keep all their gear together while they are on the go, but any backpack or small briefcase can easily work to accommodate all their super awesome gear, so it’s not a deal-breaker.
Our #10 Choice – Yolyoo Spy Night Vision Goggles
This fun and functional gift is sure to please your little spies and make them the envy of other super sleuths.
- Can function as protective glasses
- Allows children to see up to 25 feet in the dark
- Cushioned nose pad and adjustable belt ensure a comfortable fit
- Features LED flip-out lights to see better in the dark
- Batteries not included
These Night Vision Goggles are a must-have for any aspiring spy. Not only do they look cool, but they also double as safety glasses. Whether skiing the slopes or having and epic after dark Nerf battle with their friends, your child’s eyes will stay protected and comfortable for nighttime activities. The goggles allow children to see up to 25 feet in the dark
These goggles feature a cushioned nose pad and an adjustable belt to fit the goggles comfortably to your child’s head. The lens of the goggles is pc similar to the screen of a cellphone, making it durable, sturdy, and hard to scratch. These goggles also feature flip-out LED lights that run off of 4 AAA batteries that you have to supply. The battery case is at the back of the adjustable belt.
Our #11 Choice – SpyX Micro Eyes and Ears
The key to a good spy is discretion, and when it comes to discretion, less is more.
- Authentic look and feel
- Both pieces work
- Great for imaginative play, Halloween, or a spy-themed party
- Quality of sound and light aren’t great
- Won’t fit comfortably in the ears of smaller children
Although this set only includes two pieces, the SpyX Micro Ear and the SpyX Spy Light, it looks and feels like real spy tech. The spy ear features a blue tooth style earpiece that fits comfortably on one ear while the blue tooth style SpyX Spy Light fits over the other ear. It’s like something right out of the movies.
Both pieces are fully functional. The light features a red LED light for nighttime espionage missions so you can see in the dark and the micro ear’s, micro listen to capabilities to help you hear faraway sounds. These are a perfect addition to a super cool spy play experience.
However, keep in mind these are toys, not tools, so don’t expect the best quality sound or for the light to be very strong. If you want to see well in the dark, you’re probably better off with a pair of Nightvision goggles, but for running around in a dark room in the house, this light will do fine.
Our #12 Choice – Melissa and Doug On the Go Secret Decoder Deluxe Activity Set
50+ activities are a lot of fun and encourage problem-solving and critical thinking.
- Encourages critical thinking and problem solving
- Toys can work without the included activity pads
- Decoder pens dry out quickly if used heavily
This set is another Melissa and Doug product but designed for slightly older children. This set is suitable for children 7 to 9. It includes three activity books, three magic markers that allow you to write and reveal messages, two secret decoder wheels, two spy-themed sticker sheets, and a seek and find lens.
Kids will have fun trying to reveal and decode the secret messages to find out what they say. They will also enjoy creating secret messages and puzzles of their own with their invisible ink pen. Even after they finish the activities, they can continue to use the decoder wheels to make codes of their own for sending secret messages because the kit lends itself to open-ended play.
The only downfall to this kit is that the secret decoder pens can wear out and dry out with frequent heavy use, but the invisible ink pen will last longer.
Our #13 Choice – Spy Gear for Kids UV Gear Kit
The kit comes with one invisible ink spray bottle with invisible ink, a UV light, and an instruction sheet and is appropriate for ages six and up.
- Offers two ways to play (looking for clues and writing secret messages)
- Batteries included with UV light
- Not appropriate for children under six
For kids who are more interested in the science of spying rather than pretend play aspect, the Spy Gear UV Gear Kit is a good choice.
They can use the spray bottle to spray surfaces with invisible ink and then use the UV light to look for fingerprints. Or they can unscrew the top of the spray bottle and use the attached invisible ink brush to write secret messages and use the UV light to read them. The UV light operates on 3 LR44 batteries, which come included with the kit.
While it is still a fun toy for kids, it’s best appreciated by slightly older children who are into more of the intricacies of actual spy work. An excellent toy for those interested in what spies do and a great science demonstration rolled up in one.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are spy sets good for active play?
Yes, spy sets are great for active play. The reason behind this is that spy sets require your child and their friends to hunt down intelligence, secure secret information, hide from spy hunters, and sometimes run from assailants or stalk quarry.
In short, it’s difficult to use spy sets for sedentary play. While there are some exceptions, most spy sets force your child to be active. You should note that the level of activity with spy sets won’t reach that of sports, however.
Are spy sets good for imaginative play?
Spy sets are adequate for imaginative play. When your child uses their spy set, they’ll have to put themselves into the shoes of a spy, so they’ll need to exercise their imagination at least a little.
However, spy sets are not the best toys for imaginative play. Spy is sometimes difficult to incorporate into imaginative play that is not related to spies, so they are limited in comparison to other toy sets.
Are spy sets good for creative play?
Spy sets are not very good for creative play. While your child may find a way to use the spy gear set in a creative capacity, for the most part spy gear sets are not conducive to building creativity because they are limited in terms of how they can be used.
In other words, in comparison to using building blocks, spy sets do not have many possibilities which would require your child to think outside the box implied by the gear itself.
Spy sets are also difficult to combine with other toys which may be more suitable for creative play on account of their niche designs. It’s hard to imagine how an invisible pen might be a useful tool in situations outside of being a spy.
What spy sets should I avoid?
Some spy sets are overly violent, which you may want to avoid. Alternatively, you may want to avoid spy gear sets which are overly complicated. Some spy gear sets include so many bells and whistles that need to be used in conjunction to have fun that it defeats the purpose of play.
Furthermore, you may want to avoid spy gear sets which are intended for solo play. Spy play is best performed with a friend or in small groups, and most spies would prefer to work as a team anyway. Spy gear for solo play will probably not scratch your young spy’s gear itch.
What should I look for in a spy toy?
In spy toy sets, you should look for:
- A cool spy aesthetic
- Group play potential
- Features with high cool factor
The spy aesthetic is a necessity for any spy toy. No spy wants to look like a dork while they are on a mission. The spy aesthetic is typically reflected by toys which look highly technological. If it would fit in a James Bond movie, it has the right spy aesthetic.
Remember, the spy aesthetic is not necessarily attention-grabbing. Part of the cool factor which kids want in spy toys is in the aesthetic of devices which appear normal but are in fact capable of spectacular feats.
The secret ink pen is the prototypical example of a toy which has both the spy aesthetic and a high cool factor. At first glance, it seems like it’s just a pen — but when your spy uses it, they’ll get a lot of enjoyment out of the fact that it prints invisible ink which they can use for clandestine communications.
Clandestine communications aren’t very much fun if your spy has nobody to communicate with, however. That’s why the best spy toys are made with group play in mind. While there may be some spy toys that are effective for solo play, for the most part spies work in groups.
What else should I know about spy toys?
Some children love spy toys, but some don’t. Spy play appeals strongly to some children, whereas it is boring to others because they may not enjoy the activities which spy play entails. Spy play requires moving around the house or yard. Often, spy play implies a storyline of intrigue and danger, which some children may simply prefer to avoid for greener pastures.
Likewise, spy toys are often technological. Young boys tend to love technological marvels—and deception—but young girls may not be as interested. Furthermore, younger children will probably not appreciate spy gear sets as much as children who are over age 9.
The concept of spying and playing with spy toys is not something that children are born with, so most kids will need to have some context about what a spy is before they will find playing with spy toys to be appealing.
Unlike many other types of toys, most spy toys are not ideal for playing with parents. So, if your child has a few friends, spy toys are a good bet. But, if you think that you will be the one who is playing with your child, you may find your child doesn’t see the appeal of being a spy.