Dave Hampton and Caleb Chung spent nine months creating the Furby (in addition to nine months spent designing the toy). After two attempts at licensing the concept, they invited fellow toy and game inventor Richard C. Levy to join their efforts to sell Furby. Levy brought Furby to Tiger Electronics and Tiger's Roger Shiffman bought the rights to it. Furby's first public appearance was at the American International Toy Fair in 1998.
In A Chat with Dave Hampton, he states he was originally inspired of the idea for Furby after seeing Tamagotchi at a Bandai booth at a toy fair, and also adds he didn't like Tamagotchi very much.
The first concept art was drawn in 1997.
There appeared to be lore about Furbys arriving in UFOs that was scrapped.
The First Furby
The first Furby prototype was made from a tennis ball, which was rigged to move around like a puppet. It is owned by Caleb Chung. This Furby was tested with a knob attached to the Furby with wires. It has one motor.
The First Designs
Christi Chung helped Caleb Chung on the first designs.