Older toys seek new fans with makeovers By JOHN SEEWER, Associated Press Writer It seems an unlikely pair the trendy SpongeBob SquarePants teaming up with the aging Etch A Sketch. ... Other toy shelf staples also have gotten makeovers. Monopoly is out with a new version that replaces the Atlantic City Boardwalk with Times Square. And who can forget when Barbie ditched her longtime beau Ken just two years ago. Traditional toys have been losing ground to electronics in recent years sales fell 4 percent to $21.3 billion last year, according to the market research firm NPD Group Inc. For the makers of classic toys, creating a new look is one way to compete against video games and the holiday season's "must have" toys. ... There's a fine line, though, when it comes to updating a classic. ... Giving a classic toy a new look without altering it too much is a smart move, said Jonathan Samet, publisher of The Toy Book, a trade publication. ... Only a handful of classic toys have remained unchanged, Walsh said. Milton Bradley's battery-operated game Operation hasn't been altered much except for the removal of a cigarette from the surgeon's mouth on the box, he said. ... Lol. We love traditional games. Clue is a fave, as is Scrabble. I never noticed the cigarette in the surgeon's mouth though!