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Messages - Muftak

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I have to say the TRU sale has really gotten me back in the game. Randomly went last Sunday and found 2 Dr Evazans on the shelf. Tuesday netted a Wedge amongst random TPM dregs. Thursday there was more TPM and a (ripped card) Barada. Today stopped in on a whim around 2 PM and as I entered the aisle a TRU employee was putting a case on the pegs. Turned out it was the "blu ray" wave so I picked up Cracken and the Mon Cal, two figures I had passed up a year ago due to the price.

They really seem to be moving through some cases out there. I might need to stop in even more often and finally plug those last few gaps in what I've wanted.

At the end of the day, I am buying these things now to complete my collection OCD and put 'em on display on a shelf. Articulation is barely a factor to me, but price matters A LOT if we are going above ten bucks each. I was happy to get hyper-articulated figures at a premium price as far back as VOTC if it was a mainstay iconic character that needed it. But then I collected the entire POTF2 line happily before that.

Cantina Alien #15 (let it be Ranat, please) can be 5 POA for all I'm worried, as long as I can afford it and find it at the store.

Now, do I understand this right--The figures that look like bootlegs come in the pretty packages, while the pretty figures come in the bootleg packaging?

What constitutes the "wow factor" 3000 figures into the line? What can they give us that we haven't seen before?

My greatest hope would be an all-inclusive line that very quickly covers the basic characters (Luke, Han, Anakin in iconic outfits) and brings in those last few remaining hold outs that have yet to be made. (15thCA, Cliegg Lars, etc) Something to get the toys set up to lead into the all new movie stuff.

I guess what I would like to see is a return to the OTC model, get a definitive line out there that can stand by itself as a collection of Star Wars figures with no need to borrow main hero figures from previous lines to make the collection feel complete. I don't mind having to borrow a Yarna from Legacy or Ben Quadrinaros from last year to bulk up the "one of everybody" loose collection. It would be nice and long overdue to have another line that could stand by itself, especially since this line is being put out as "for the collector."

I wouldn't balk at reissues of previous sculpts as long as they met the above criteria. I would want waves made up of twelve "new to the line" figures each. I would be happy with 4-5 waves a year, and maybe 10-20 of those figures being brand new, non-reissues.

I fear we will get the same old case ratios and the line will be difficult/impossible to collect like it has been these last five years.

The only time I saw the new Bespin Han on the shelf it was actually a POTJ swap, so I feel ya here. I turned it in and explained to them how they had been had. Never saw it again.

But I'm curious...if this problem has been ongoing and the store doesn't care, are their pegs filling up with swapped junk? Or are the clueless types still buying the swapped figures at 2013 prices? If so there's the source of your retail apathy.

I remember going into a comic book store a few years back and seeing a bunch of Cinema Scene packs on display with obvious swapped figures...stuff like old gi joes and x-men figures. They had 'em marked with sky-high prices and called them "factory errors." I shook my head at that one.

The Black Series 6" Figures / Re: 6 Inch Figures?
« on: January 29, 2013, 11:28 PM »
Hmmmm. As a collector who hasn't bought a figure in two years (honestly due to cost and inability to find the few figures I would have bought) this is probably geared more towards me and my ilk. And my verdict? Errr, maybe.

One of the exercises I did when paring down the collection was to figure out the bare minimum of needed figures. I settled on a format of twelve figures per film. Of course, I kept a collection of about 400 essentials, but that 12-figure concept would totally work for this line for me.

The problem there is that I only want 1 of the first wave characters: Artoo. I guess I'll wait and see if the line has legs enough to get me the characters I want, and pick them up later on the secondary market. So it does keep me collecting, but it sure isn't gonna get me back in the stores.

I was thinking Hasbro would be filling 2014 with a return to the OTC concept to gear towards the new movies, and was wrestling with the thought of getting a carded collection of those if my thoughts panned out. I really regret not picking up all the OTC figures last time and having some sort of solid carded collection to go with the loose stuff. On that note, I wish these packages had a little bit of background art ala the OTC/Saga2 stuff. Black box is nice-looking, but the collector who leaves it in the box deserves more.

I really like the Luke, though. And small waves sound like a step in the right direction, back towards the POTJ era. Good luck, Hasbro.

The Sequel Trilogy / Re: Star Wars Episode VII
« on: January 24, 2013, 11:53 PM »
Y'know, that lens flare right at the beginning of AOTC has always bothered me. Likewise the silly overuse of it in Trek. But I'll take a movie that's set on the "lens flare planet" to have a director that is paying attention to what the actors are doing around the FX.

Looks like we might actually get a movie with an involving emotional thread. Super 8 (and for that matter Toy Story 3) was so well done I have a ton of faith here. Lets hope it pans out and all parties can keep this combination together.

The Sequel Trilogy / Re: Star Wars Episode VII
« on: January 13, 2013, 09:42 PM »
As long as Artoo and Threepio are still highly featured, I am on board for whatever they have in mind. Make no mistake, I would love to see a story that leaves room for Thrawn stuff to still fit (and maybe some neat animated versions of the Zahn stuff down the road) and for the timeframe we're looking at I could be on board with a Darth Caedus story, but I am more interested in a great story that adds to the emotional arc of the movies thus far (the fall, the redemption, the casting aside of the material world?) than in following any of the EU.

But, yeah, to count as Episodes VII - IX, it's gotta have the droids right there in the thick of it. That's Star Wars.

The Vintage Collection / Re: 2010 "Vintage" Collection Wave 2 - RotS
« on: September 6, 2010, 09:12 PM »
Saw this wave at Wal*Mart yesterday...and I have to admit, seeing the Sandtrooper on a Vintage Star Wars cardback was almost enough to make me buy it, just because that's something I dreamed about as a kid. Didn't get it, and now it occurs to me the picture on the card is actually a '97 special edition addition, so that wouldn't have been it back in the day, anyway.

But, man, that Vintage card stuff is really working for me, especially the straight up "Star Wars" look...can't wait to see more of those.

The Vintage Collection / Re: 2010 "Vintage" Collection Wave 1 - ESB
« on: August 25, 2010, 09:28 PM »
So I've been picking these up here and there about one a week since the "official" release date.

Had to pick up the Cloud Car Pilot first. I love it, and the sculpt is very very of the most natural-stance pose looking action figures I've ever seen, really. Just a great figure that I couldn't be happier with (unless, of course, he had been given the good ol' commlink.)

Dack is a nice solid figure as well...though it took a little while looking at him in the store to decide what to buy, as the two on the pegs at the time had very different chest control box paint schemes. I went with one with a little green to it, and have since found out his face paint is a little off. Oh well, he will just keep his helmet on.

Picked up Luke now, and was very surprised to discover he comes apart very easily at the waist ball joint (not something I remember reading anywhere before, but I admit I have been lax lately...) Makes taking the weapons belt off real easy too...maybe I'll have to pick up a second at some point for display as the Dagobah/beltless costume variation...

Looking forward to Leia and ATATCom in the next couple weeks...

Anybody have a handle on what figures the "real" Vintage ESB three-packs held? I haven't looked at them in years, but these line-ups seem really familiar? If they match up I give Hasbro mondo props for doing it right. If not, well, then I could see a whole bunch of other ways they could have taken these sets.

Shadows of the Dark Side / Re: TRU "Battle of Endor" Pilot 4-packs
« on: August 15, 2010, 11:06 PM »
Love seeing these guys, a great idea for an exclusive. I so prefer unique new pilots to not come with a vehicle.

Only complaint is the continued use of that Vintage X-Wing Luke body. If only they had perfected a normal-height X-Wing figure before rolling out all these definitve versions of them. I just fear they'll finally do the right size and not make the neck compatible to all the heads already out there. On the other hand, maybe they've made the new smaller astromech mold in an attempt to just downsize everything else, so that eventually the X-Wingers will look normal sized.

Collect All 92! / Re: Rebel Soldier (Hoth Battle Gear)
« on: June 29, 2010, 11:29 PM »
Oh, yeah, pretty much every figure from Empire on has a post-neck. That figured into my playing as a kid a lot...pre-ROTJ I would put a Hoth Leia head on a 4-LOM (Zuckuss now) body to masquerade as a bounty hunter, and I had fun putting an AT-AT Commander head on Zuckuss (now 4-LOM) body as a cyborg Imperial. After ROTJ, Luke Skywalker comandeered General Madine's body all the time to become the cleverly titled "General Luke."

Star Wars Universe / Re: Rating the Star Wars Saga
« on: June 5, 2010, 11:32 PM »
I'll play...especially since I have some differing opinions...

Star Wars (A New Hope) - 9/10 (I know, it's the one that started it all, how can it not get all the points? Chalk it up to my love for the whole Death Star Escape sequence, and my feeling that the Yavin section at the end is kind of anticlimactic after all that. It's not an opinion I've heard from anyone else, but I've stopped watching after the Falcon/TIE duel many a time. Otherwise, obviously, just a great great movie.)

The Empire Strikes Back - 10/10  (The high water mark. The thing is so funky as a movie, it is striking (no pun intended) how refreshing a movie that doesn't follow formula can be. Can't turn it off once it's on, and always makes me want to put on...) 

Return of the Jedi - 7/10 (when I was a kid this was my favorite, I loved everything about it, from Jabba to the Sarlaac battle (which I comitted to memory nearly shot-for-shot before VHS) to the Speeder Bikes and even the Ewoks. Nowadays, I wish it was a better movie and didn't rely so much o nthe characterization made in ESB, but did it's own stuff (Prime example, the ham-handed rehash of the "I love you" "I know" bit. It just doesn't work the second time, except to make you remember how good a scene it was the first time.) I still like the Ewoks though, if I skip something it is usually the Jabba's Palace beginning.)

The Phantom Menace - 8/10 (I am in the minority that thinks this was the best prequel. Even more so than ANH, this is a standalone movie to me. Qui-Gon Jinn may be the best-written character of the entire saga IMO. Watto is by far the best supporting character of the PT, and really is the villain of the flick, far overshadowing Darth Maul. Of course, then you also have Jar Jar and little Ani, but I can almost excuse that stuff because this boils down to a kids movie. I always get caught up in this one the whole way through, even through the Tatooine stuff in the middle.)

Attack of the Clones - 4/10 (I can't remember the last time I watched this movie, it had to have been pre-05, so more than five years. This thing just didn't work for me once the newness of its Star Warsiness wore off. Anakin comes off so much worse as a grown-up than he did as a kid, Obi-wan tries to save things but runs into plot obstacles that can't be acted around. The only interesting characters are the Lars family, and they get very short shrift. Nah, I'd pick TPM every time over this one.)

Revenge of the Sith - 5/10 (I appreciate the bridge back to the OT here, but there are just too many problems for me to really get excited about this. The quick-change of Anakin after all the soul-searching, the lumpiness of the plot, and the general feeling of mean-spiritedness and lack of joy really detract from my enjoyment. As a big R2 fan I used to really dig the opening sequence aboard Grievous's ship, but after 2 seasons of Clone Wars cartoons I've seen it done much better elsewhere by now. Now I'll watch it for the duel at the end, but that's about all.)

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