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Messages - Nicklab

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151
The Black Series 3.75" Figures / Re: Black Series Rumors
« on: June 2, 2014, 07:05 PM »

Don't be shy, name the site.  ;) We post suggestions/speculation/what if posts like this all the time (e.g. Concept Series, and the like) . It's all about generating forum discussion, not click baiting front page traffic (where the article isn't even posted). There was nothing malevolent in our intentions.

This seemed like a clear case of click baiting.  Sorry, gotta call it like I see it.  It seemed like an attempt to capitalize on traffic generated by someone else's content without adding any new information to the discussion.

I saw the post as well over the weekend.  Maybe I'm just more used to the custom content that Yak puts out, but it didn't even occur to me that this was authentic.  The comment right above the picture uses the words "rumor" and "image mockup."  These are pretty good indicators if you take a few seconds to read.  I think It's kind of disingenuous to skip the words then accuse someone else of shady behavior caused by your misinterpretation of the photo.  The post in question had like 75 likes - did anyone else comment about the image being deceitful?  Furthermore, it didn't prompt me to click on anything.  I read the title, looked at the picture, read a few comments, and moved on.  I see plenty of sites hint at news then force you to their page to get the scoop.  THAT is click baiting.

What I find far more annoying is the supposed "ownership" of collectible news and information these days.  If I told you there was a new 6" Bounty Hunter on the way, wouldn't your first thought be to start guessing which character?  Are you not allowed to wonder or discuss the topic if you're not affiliated with the site that first posted the news?  Looks pretty clear to me that there was a rumor about an upcoming set, so Yak put out a custom visual representation in the spirit of driving discussion and speculation.  Not sure how or why you find that so annoying, but it might be time for some honest self reflection, Nick.   



I've revisited that FB post.  Since it was first posted it HAS been edited.  Perhaps someone else found it misleading, too.

Let's look at it purely from a story standpoint, first:  RS reported the news first based on some info from a TRU computer in the UK.  It came with UK pricing (it's own issue) , etc.  That's the first step in the story.  A perfectly acceptable way of passing that info onto readers is to post a headline and a link to the other sites story.  There's nothing wrong with that.  Especially if you offer attribution and links to the original source.  That's journalism 101.  I don't even care if you provide a link to a topic about it in the forum section of your site.  Topics like this are good for discussion.

So where does the actual story go from there?  The next step would be to develop the story:  release dates, figure lineups, price points, and most importantly IMAGES.  When you can provide a verified IMAGE of a new figure/vehicle/multipack you are going to see a tremendous uptick in site traffic.  And you get the ultimate confirmation in the story.

But ask anyone who runs a SW collecting website about when they get a new product image.  There is a DRAMATIC increase in site traffic.  And those clicks don't just translate to popularity.  They can also translate into higher advertising revenues for a site.

Very often when a story like this breaks you may have multiple outlets working a story.  One site may get the initial product listing info.  But another may get an image.  It happens all the time.  But in this case the RS story got people interested.  All of a sudden YF has something on the story and THERE'S AN IMAGE.  WHAT?!?!  An image in relation to a story like this INSTANTLY draws interest.  But since it was not an image of the product in question, what are readers left to think?

As for "Likes" and comments on FB postings?  Having worked at a SW collecting site that had a Facebook presence, I was witness to instances where responses that were critical of certain postings were deleted.  Some people have thin skins when it comes to their social media presence.  And some websites are not interested in having a dialogue about the quality or integrity of their content.  Likes and comments can be manipulated to suit the needs of a given page, so I'm not that inclined to give all of that information a tremendous ammount of creedence.

And following the Rancor posting, there was ANOTHER FB posting about wishlist type content.  On that occassion the first posting showed images of Hoth themed items as part of a proposed battle pack.  Evidently, that posting seemed questionable, as well.  Because there was a followup posting with almost identical imagery that now featured the bold word MOCKUP.  But already there was misleading imagery that might have led someone to think that some new Hoth themed exclusive multipack was on the way.

FWIW, JediJman, I am entitled to an opinion about what I find annoying in terms of content.  Especially if a collecting site wants people to follow them on social media.  If you put your content out there for public consumption, then that outlet opens themselves up for honest criticism in how they present their content

152
The Sequel Trilogy / Re: Star Wars Episode VII
« on: June 2, 2014, 02:04 PM »
I have to wonder if one of those locations might actually be the famed Toche station...

As for the creature?  It looks like a giant hog mated with a dewback.  Uck!

153
The Black Series 3.75" Figures / Re: Black Series Rumors
« on: June 2, 2014, 12:32 PM »

Don't be shy, name the site.  ;) We post suggestions/speculation/what if posts like this all the time (e.g. Concept Series, and the like) . It's all about generating forum discussion, not click baiting front page traffic (where the article isn't even posted). There was nothing malevolent in our intentions.

While I don't disagree that Hasbro is not going to come around on the dedicated playset topic, that is no reason to abandon the desire or discussion about it.

Sorry that you are so annoyed.

This seemed like a clear case of click baiting.  Sorry, gotta call it like I see it.  It seemed like an attempt to capitalize on traffic generated by someone else's content without adding any new information to the discussion.

154
The Sequel Trilogy / Re: Star Wars Episode VII
« on: June 2, 2014, 09:30 AM »
Check out THIS TMZ POSTING.  It shows a gallery of over 40 images from the set of the Episode VII shoot in Abu Dhabi.

155
Watto's Junk Yard / Re: A Game of Thrones (HBO)
« on: June 2, 2014, 09:00 AM »
The fight was fantastic.  Pedro Pascal did an amazing job with his spear work!  HBO posted a BTS video about the preparation for the fight.  And it turns out that he wound up studying Wu Shu in preparing for this sequence, and that is the same martial art that Ray Park used for Darth Maul in Episode I.

One thing I'm glad about?  I was afraid that the Red Viper's dialogue during the fight scene was going to sound like something from Inigo Montoya in The Princess Bride.  Thankfully that was not the case.

156
Watto's Junk Yard / Re: A Game of Thrones (HBO)
« on: June 1, 2014, 11:02 PM »
I knew it was coming.  But the visual was that much more disturbing.

157
In the OT I always got the sense that rank insignia like the Sandtrooper pauldron colors and the Imperial Officer badges were not given a significant degree of thought.

158
Watto's Junk Yard / Re: Super Hero/Comic Book Movies
« on: May 31, 2014, 03:27 PM »
That's some serious talent just in the voice actor department:  Josh Brolin as Thanos, Bradley Cooper as Rocket Racoon, and Vin Diesel as Groot.  It makes casting Chris Pratt as Starlord that much less of a risky move.

And did anyone else see the bogus headline about Arnold Schwarzenegger being cast as Thanos?


159
The Black Series 3.75" Figures / Re: Black Series Rumors
« on: May 31, 2014, 01:57 PM »
So something related to this rumored Rancor Pit TRU exclusive wound up in my Facebook feed recently.  I follow a number of sites on FB (I'll refrain from identifying the particular site), and all of a sudden I saw in my news feed an image of a Rancor, Oola and some scenery including the gate to the Rancor's pen.  Instantly, my interest was piqued.  Was this an actual image of the Jabba's Rancor set that we had been told would make us "wet our pants"?  Was it actually something new instead of what we've been discussing here in this thread?

And then I read more of that Facebook posting.  And sure enough, this was NOT something newsworthy.  Not at all.  But it was actually an attempt by a collecting site to use some of the hype surrounding these new rumors and revelations to do a couple of things:
1 - To promote the customs section of their forums and...
2 - To beg Hasbro for playsets.  Again.

Frankly, I found this both deceitful and annoying.  Deceitful because it was a blatant attempt to cash in on some excitement regarding new product announcements to promote customs and dioramas.  And while both of those things can be cool to look at, they aren't news.  It diminishes the value of a website whose stock and trade with their readers is supposed to be NEWS.

As for it being annoying?  I stand by that assessment.  Hasbro conducted the Star Wars Q&A's for several years.  Time and time again the subjects of dioramas and playsets came up.  And like clockwork Hasbro had to state categorically that in the current non-movie year model, playsets were not viable from a business standpoint.  This continued harping on the subject has grown tiresome.  Especially when Hasbro has offered up a clear answer.  It reminds me of an old adage:  the definition of insanity is to continue to do the same thing over and over, but expect a different result.

160
Can't beat it for $39.

Well, it would seem that YES, YOU CAN BEAT $39.  Toys R Us stores are now clearancing out the MTT.  The current price?  $33!!!  I may pick up another now.

161
The Black Series 3.75" Figures / Re: Black Series Rumors
« on: May 29, 2014, 09:42 AM »
If they're all just repacks, why would anyone need to "change their underwear" at SDCC?  ;)



You should know by now that some sites (with staffers who have an overinflated sense of self-importance) just live to blow things out of proportion. Or they just have no sense of what's new and what's rehashed.

162
The Black Series 3.75" Figures / Re: Black Series Rumors
« on: May 28, 2014, 09:06 PM »
Same here.  I think Hasbro has pretty much been keeping to their word about these multipacks.  Either they're all re-issues, or all/mostly new.  And I'm with you on this point Jesse:  if they start sneaking in 1 or 2 new figures in a set of 6 or 8 with a rehashed vehicle or creature?  That's just uncool and manipulative.

Clearly, the Battle on Endor pack appears to be all repacks.  Just running through what's in there:
-AT-ST - I'm thinking that this is the 4th offering, correct?  There was the SOTDS Target exclusive, the K-Mart exclusive TVC version and the WalMart exclusive TLC version
-Stormtrooper (uncertain of the version)
-AT-ST Driver - from the K-Mart exclusive set
-Imperial Officer - from the K-Mart exclusive Death Star Scanning Crew set
-Ewoks - from the TRU exclusive Movie Heroes Ewok set
-Chewbacca - Early Bird version
-Han Solo (Endor) - VTSC version
-Leia (Endor - minus helmet & poncho) - VTAC version

Now if we're looking at all new for the other sets?  I'd definitely be happy.  But I get the feeling that Hasbro may want to get more mileage out of that Rancor they put together for the Target exclusive.  And the other potential figures that would likely fill out that pack have all been made within the past few years:  Malakili, Giran, Oola, the Gamorrean Guards, etc.  Taking that into consideration, I think that the Rancor set is almost certainly going to be all reissues.  To do otherwise would be bizarre.

As for the Cantina Showdown?  I'm hopeful here that maybe Hasbro can surprise me.  When I saw the name, I instantly thought of the old POTF2 Cinema Scene with Dr. Evazan, Ponda Baba and Obi-Wan Kenobi.  Hence my previous post.  I hope Hasbro has a sense of history though, and recognizes that particular scene has been done before.  Sure, the new sculpts are infinitely better than their POTF2 predecessors.  But what about something new? 

Personally, I'm hoping for a booth with Han Solo and Greedo.  If Hasbro was feeling daring, I think they should call it "Han shot first".  I don't know if they're prepared to go out on a limb like that, though.  I would be okay with re-worked versions of Han Solo and Greedo for this set.  And maybe have a nearby table of 2 Cantina patrons that haven't been done before.  THAT is a Cantina Showdown set that I'd like to see.

163
The Black Series 3.75" Figures / Re: Black Series Rumors
« on: May 28, 2014, 05:25 PM »
The RS posting had some prices attached to it.  Mind you, all of the prices were in GBP.  Here are the prices for each set:

Battle on Endor:  99.99 price tag ($168 USD) - AT-ST + 8 figures (7 if you consider the 2 Ewoks as being the equivalent of one basic figure)

Cantina Showdown:  39.99 ($67 USD)

Jabba's Rancor Pit:  129.99 ($220 USD)


I think the lineups are likely going to be somewhat proportional to the price points.

CANTINA SHOWDOWN - Maybe 4 - 6 figures, tops.  I think it's probably going to include:  Luke Skywalker, Obi-Wan Kenobi, Ponda Baba, Dr. Evazan and perhaps one or two other Cantina patrons

JABBA'S RANCOR PIT:  The last Rancor set with Luke retailed for $50.  With the rise in prices I think it would probably sell for $70 - $80 now.  At this price, I'm thinking we get the following:  Rancor, Jedi Luke (hopefully the sandstorm version), Gamorrean Guard, Malakili, Giran, Bib Fortuna, Slave Leia

164
At the very least I can see the paint sculpt being different on the At St. At least I hope. Would be nice to have different head sculpts on the Imperial Officer and At-St driver as well.

I feel very much the opposite regarding the head sculpts on the AT-ST Driver and Imperial Officer.  I would much rather see new head sculpts on these figures if they were being offered as carded basic figures, not part of a large exclusive pack that already has numerous repacks.  And let's not forget that this is probably going to retail for somewhere between $60 and $80.

165
The Bullpen / Re: Captain America: Winter Soldier: The Toys!
« on: May 24, 2014, 11:45 PM »
I saw ONE 6" Black Widow, and that was at a Target store. 

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