The 90s Toys & Games

Yak Bak

Yak Bak was a series of handheld voice recorder toys in the mid-1990’s that were developed by Yes! Entertainment. Targeted at young children around the ages of five and six, the Yak Bak series consisted of 12 different models of voice recorders that were released throughout the decade: the Yak Bak, the Yak Bak 2, the Yak Bak WarpR, the Yak Guard, the Yak Time, the Yak Wakky, the Yak Bak SFX, and the Yak Bakwards, the Yakkins, the Yak Bak Ball, the Yak Maniak, and the Yak Bak Power Penz. Each consecutive model improved certain aspects of its predecessors, though for the most part these changes were small and the series was largely the same.

The original Yak Bak was introduced in 1994 and was an intended competitor to Tiger Electronics’ Talkboy. The toy was a simple handheld voice recorder that consisted of only two buttons, “Say” and “Play”. When the “Say” button was pressed, up to six seconds of audio could be recorded, and the recording action was shown by a blinking light.

Yak Bak was featured in it’s own television commercial in 1995, with the slogan of “Yak Bak gives you the last word!” after showing two siblings in a back and forth argument of “Is not!” and “Is too!”

The subsequent Yak Bak models that followed the 1994 release featured slight innovations, though the toy remained largely the same. The most notable releases include the Yak Bak 2, the Yak Bak WarpR, the Yak Bakwards, and the Yak Bak Power Penz. The Yak Bak 2 introduced a locking mechanism that would prevent the “Say” button from accidentally being pressed, which would erase the current recording. The Yak Bak WarpR featured the ability to change the pitch of the recording via a dial. The Yak Bakwards introduced the ability to replay a recording backwards. Lastly, the Yak Back Power Penz combined ink pens with the defining features of the Yak Bak for a smaller, more portable toy that could be used in school.

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