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The Santa Claw Returns Dec 5th 2011

Updated on December 19, 2014

Update 1/10/2012

UPdate 1/10/2012: Congratulations to Real Art Design Group because The Santa Claw was just listed in the 2012 Guinness Book of World Records Gamer's Edition as the largest claw machine! Although the December 2011 event has ended, this hub contains important information about The Santa Claw so I am going to keep it published as long as there is interest in this topic and hopefully they will bring it back again in the future so you can play again!

Example of an Avatar You Can Create: Yeti Wearing Star Trek Unifom. By hitting the "R" key on the keyboard, I can make my avatar create an animal balloon while waiting in line to play the Santa Claw.
Example of an Avatar You Can Create: Yeti Wearing Star Trek Unifom. By hitting the "R" key on the keyboard, I can make my avatar create an animal balloon while waiting in line to play the Santa Claw.

Calling All Claw Masters!

  • Biggest Claw Game Ever - built by Real Art Design Group in 2010

  • On display at the Gizmodo Gallery in NY Dec 5-11 2011

  • Play Santa Claw free from the comfort of your own computer

  • NEW Watch video of me playing the Santa Claw on 12/6/2011 - see below

  • Get The Latest Updates on this blog: where you can get in (virtual) line to play, or watch the claw machine action "live" on their video feed or get details on rules for playing and for winning prizes (little different than last year).


Biggest Claw Game Ever

Last year the folks at Real Art Design Group figured out something to do with "all the presents that Santa had leftover from the holidays" so they created the biggest claw machine ever. You could play for free from your own computer from pretty much anywhere. Fans, including me, sometimes waited 8 hours in (virtual) line for their turn to play. We could create an avatar and chat with other players who were waiting in line. And if you won a prize, they would actually mail it to you if you lived in the US (until they ran out, and even then they kept the game open for a while so you could still play for fun). And the good news is they're bringing it back December 5 -11. And it will be on display at the 2011 Gizmodo Gallery in New York City.

The Official Santa Claw Recap Video (2011)

The Game Is On Display at Gizmodo Gallery in NYC

The Santa Claw will be included in the 2011 Gizmodo Gallery. Gizmodo is a popular gadget blog that reports on cool gadget and technology news from around in the world. For the 2011 holiday season their New York gallery will display some of their coolest discoveries, so it should be great stuff - like the biggest claw machine ever! The gallery will be open December 4 - 7 at Reed Annex in NYC. Some cool devices expected to appear, besides the Santa Claw, are a Back to the Future DeLorean, Weird Japanese USB Gadgets and the Lego Death Star - a 3,800 piece diorama.

A Giant Non-Magical Knobby Ball my friend won in The Santa Claw last year and then she received it in the mail.
A Giant Non-Magical Knobby Ball my friend won in The Santa Claw last year and then she received it in the mail.

The Prizes

Last year there were 4,000 winners who snagged a prize in the game. The prizes included things like big bouncy balls (also known as giant non-magical knobby balls) and skateboards. They also had "mystery gifts" which were gift wrapped, then stashed inside a clear ball, so you could see the package, but not whatever was inside it. If you grabbed the ball with a mystery prize inside you wouldn't find out what you won until you received it in the mail and opened it. After you won a prize, you could keep going back in line to play but they would only mail the first prize to you even if you won again. This year its reported that if you win a prize, it will fall out of the chute and whoever is attending the Gizmodo Gallery that day can run over and scoop it up right there. But its also reported that if you win one of their specially marked prizes, will record your win and they'll mail it to you (probably US only). Pretty nice of them don't you think? Check their website for details and updates as opening day gets closer. See updates on their blog for important information about winning a prize.

How They Built It

The Real Art website says they used 2000 pounds of steel, 700 feet of wire and 1.5 wheelchairs to make their giant claw machine. The actual machine has beautiful graphics and the drop chute looks like a chimney.

The game also has the biggest claw I have ever seen on a claw machine. It has to be big to grab some of the larger prizes. Last year it was physically located in their Ohio office, but people from all over the world could watch you play from the comfort of their own computer screen.

How To Play

Sign up at - you can use your facebook or twitter account to sign up. Create your nickname and avatar while you wait. And you can watch others play "live" while you wait.

Last year, when your turn came you would see the claw from two different camera angles. You control the claw by moving your mouse. As you move the claw, you watch the video feed to see it move until you're ready to grab a prize. Then you drop the claw (see below to watch the video of me actually playing).

As you play, everyone else gets to watch you play so they can see if you grab a prize. After your turn you can hop back in line to play again. Last year if you won they mailed your prize to you (US only) and you could keep playing more but they would only send the one prize even if you won again later. See updates on their blog for important information about current rules and how to win a prize

Showing Different Avatar Characters You Can Create

Customize Your Avatar

After you get in line, click on "+" to choose which character you want your avatar to be, like a yeti, a pickle, a snowman, a baby or a penguin. Then click on the right arrow next to your avatar to change his hats. And click on the left arrow to choose his costume. Sometimes the waiting line can be long so take advantage of the activities you can do while you wait. Each avatar character has their own mini-actions they will perform when you hit some of the keyboard keys, like a, d and r. For instance, the yeti will play paddle-ball or make an animal balloon. You can also chat with others who are in line with you.

Video of me playing (& winning) on 12/6/2011 - shows you the bird's eye view and the side view during your turn

Photo of Original Santa Claw in 2010



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    • Game Arcade profile imageAUTHOR

      Game Arcade 

      6 years ago from US

      So far it doesn't look like they will be bringing the Santaclaw back again this year, but I hope they decide to bring it back soon.

    • profile image

      ashley hoffmann 

      6 years ago

      i want to play the santa claw

    • Game Arcade profile imageAUTHOR

      Game Arcade 

      6 years ago from US

      Hi Kyle: They don't have it available to play right now (July 2012) but it was originally released around Christmas 2010 for several months, then they brought it back again this past Christmas 2011 at the Gizmodo Gallery for a while. I'm sure a lot of people are hoping that they will make it available again at in December 2012, we'll just have to wait and see. If you're interested, I have gathered a collection of free virtual claw games that I've found on the web on my site at but you will only win virtual prizes in these games (not real ones).

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      how do u play???!! looks fun

    • zoey24 profile image


      7 years ago from South England

      Wow this looks great. Thanks for sharing :)


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