Monkey Knuckles is about as simple as a toy can be. It consists of two large balls tethered on a string, with two small beads at either end that serve as grips or counterweights. The simplicity of the toy is deceptive, and this simple setup allows for endless opportunities for creative expression. The design allows players to integrate elements of play from many other skill toys, including yo-yos, poi, and others, as well as totally unique styles of play. The idea is to use the different structural elements in order to create different patterns of motion, isolated tricks, and combinations.
Monkey Knuckles was first developed in 2003, partially in response to trends seen with other toys, including other skill toys, becoming increasingly high tech and complicated. Monkey Knuckles was an attempt to get back to a more basic kind of play that was not reliant on precision engineering, and would offer a rewarding experience for beginners learning their first tricks, as well as having the depth to allow advanced players to come up with more technical moves.
Monkey Knuckles allows for both individual tricks and continuous flow which links tricks together. One of the unique features of the toy is that there is rarely a drop or a "reset" required. When a trick is missed, it is relatively easy for players to recover by linking their play with a different move instead.
After licensing Monkey Knuckles to one of the biggest yo-yo companies in the world between 2015 and 2017, Aroundsquare was proud to regain full rights in 2018. The toy is currently available in several wooden models, as well as an extremely smooth delrin model for more advanced players.