« on: August 17, 2016, 12:17 PM »
I wish there was some happy medium here. I get that Hasbro wants to scale it down because of costs, limited shelf footprint, play factor, etc. But they clearly could have made this a little bigger like the $40-50 X-Wing and TIEs we got for TFA. I don't care so much that its to scale, but when the movie clip shows two people in the cockpit and this clearly only seats one, that's a big miss for me. Skimp on the cargo hold or other areas if you need to. That's the best part of the BMF for me - the fact that you can get four figures in the cockpit the way you see it in the movie. I'm less excited about the design than most people anyway, so this is another one I'll probably wait on for a sale.
As for 3P companies, you would be surprised what's out there for other toy lines. The Masterpiece Transformers market has several 3P companies constantly releasing new items, to the point where there is probably 3-4 times as many 3P products coming out as official Hasbro figures. Despite being smaller, their costs are typically on par with what Hasbro is charging. What they lack in volume and staff, they make up for in not having overhead, marketing, etc. And once the design is out there, there are copycat companies that reproduce a fair amount of official and 3P figures for a fourth of the cost.
Here's an example - a 3P company called Warbotron made a Combaticons set, with all five individual bots that transform into their own vehicle, then also combine to form Bruticus. The designs and quality are incredible. You could buy the set for about $450, but that's under $100 per figure and these are far more complex designs than a standard figure/playset/ship given that they need to transform into multiple things. Once these were on the market, two different companies started producing knock-offs with different color designs. You can buy a knock off version, which apparently has similar quality standards, for about $20 a bot.
So, the dream of having 3P companies produce ships isn't that unrealistic from a "can they do it" aspect. There just hasn't been much of this in the Star Wars space for some reason. Hasbro is probably more protective of the Star Wars property internationally, and I think there's some loop holes in getting around the licensing depending on the country of origin. They would just need to be creative in keeping it differentiated enough to not incur copyright infringement.