Author Topic: Let's discuss the future of the retro-vintage line.  (Read 18267 times)

Offline CorranHorn

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Re: Let's discuss the future of the retro-vintage line.
« Reply #120 on: May 22, 2007, 05:00 PM »
The high proportion of the folks wanting prequel figures is disturbing.  Obviously no love for vintage among those folks.  I just don't see a fit for those figures on that style of cardback, because there's no real relation to it in any way, shape or form.  Are they going to re-release the red/black TPM card in a case?  If so, I guess I can accept it, but how the hell are they going to make it "vintage-y"?  I think Brian's feeling that this is testing the waters for putting out a fairly standard cardback with case at the $9.99 pricepoint is spot on. 

I think what's disturbing about that result is people willing to believe that the only way we'll get these high quality figures is through a "vintage" line. So there's 389 (at last check) people who feel that to get an SA Qui-Gon or SA Padme, we have to dish out $10-$12USD for these figures when we damn sure know that Hasbro can put those kind of figures together at the $7 MSRP. The "vintage" line is for nostalgia purposes and that's the key to get people into buying them, it's why I bought them even though I'm pretty sure we'll be seeing all these figures eventually released on "basic" cards. But to push the limit with Prequel figures and OT figures never made by Kenner is ridiculous. Quite frankly, I wish the "vintage" line would come to an end this year so Hasbro can stick the high quality in the "basic" line.

Offline Rob

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Re: Let's discuss the future of the retro-vintage line.
« Reply #121 on: May 22, 2007, 05:03 PM »
Why would it have to be an entire POTF wave?  Why not just one or two POTF figures sprinkled into a regular wave?

No wave has been just one thing so far.  Mix and match - whatever works, just no prequel stuff.

I'd even think it would be prudent and necessary (as discussed) to re-release core characters like Vader on the other cardback styles to make waves work.

Offline Morgbug

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Re: Let's discuss the future of the retro-vintage line.
« Reply #122 on: May 22, 2007, 05:16 PM »

I think what's disturbing about that result is people willing to believe that the only way we'll get these high quality figures is through a "vintage" line. So there's 389 (at last check) people who feel that to get an SA Qui-Gon or SA Padme, we have to dish out $10-$12USD for these figures when we damn sure know that Hasbro can put those kind of figures together at the $7 MSRP.

Thanks Jason, that's what I wanted to say but didn't get it out there so plainly.  I agree that the likely motivating factor is to get that SA Qui-Gon more than the vintage style cardback.  Slippery slope for collectors.  As mentioned, Hasbro can do that quality in the basic line. 

I'd even think it would be prudent and necessary (as discussed) to re-release core characters like Vader on the other cardback styles to make waves work.

Yup, that's reasonable to me.  Re-release Vader, Stormtrooper and other good, high demand figures as the line goes forward.  Making it a different cardback is a guaranteed money maker for Hasbro.  As long as they don't re-release C-3PO I'd be ok.  If they made a good C-3PO though I wouldn't be opposed to them correcting that huge gaffe. 
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Offline Jesse James

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Re: Let's discuss the future of the retro-vintage line.
« Reply #123 on: May 22, 2007, 05:18 PM »
I think it's funny that a fan site doesn't be more directly vocal about the good/bad moves Hasbro makes...  This poll is a prime example of what I'm talking about.  The whole idea being proposed/promoted that you HAVE to buy these in a vintage style to get the best quality figure is proposterous to even imply/suggest as a prudent way of going about getting what you want.

These are $6 (No figure should be $7, that's bull**** unto itself) figures on $10-$12 packages, and that's a real screwjob many are happy to live with.  Now don't get me wrong, I love the vintage style cards and everything, and I don't mind the sprinkling of vintage every year...  But you SHOULD get an SA QGJ, you SHOULD get SA Obi-Wan from every film, you SHOULD get SA Army builders...  And when you don't get Super Articulation, you should at least get the level of quality that the 2006 Death STar Gunner delivered, or the Cantina Wave...

Which they're getting better about, no doubt.  But this poll is almost saying (in a way) "let's stop the basic line quality, make basic figures not quite as nice, and see if people really want to pay for the nice figure".  At least it partially reads that way to me in a sense.  As part of a collecting site, I think we all deserve that quality ALL the time.  
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Offline CHEWIE

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Re: Let's discuss the future of the retro-vintage line.
« Reply #124 on: May 22, 2007, 05:31 PM »
I say just do some killer Evolution sets with Qui Gon and like prequel characters and we are for the most part getting very good quality, and if priced at $19.99 that's not bad for three "good" figures nowadays.

 :P

Offline CorranHorn

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Re: Let's discuss the future of the retro-vintage line.
« Reply #125 on: May 22, 2007, 06:53 PM »

I think what's disturbing about that result is people willing to believe that the only way we'll get these high quality figures is through a "vintage" line. So there's 389 (at last check) people who feel that to get an SA Qui-Gon or SA Padme, we have to dish out $10-$12USD for these figures when we damn sure know that Hasbro can put those kind of figures together at the $7 MSRP.

Thanks Jason, that's what I wanted to say but didn't get it out there so plainly.  I agree that the likely motivating factor is to get that SA Qui-Gon more than the vintage style cardback.  Slippery slope for collectors.  As mentioned, Hasbro can do that quality in the basic line. 

No sweat Brent, I was pretty sure that's where you were going as well, but after seeing the poll I needed to vent a bit.  :D

I don't even like the idea of re-releasing previous "vintage" figures on other "vintage" cardbacks. I'm of the thought that these figures should only be re-released on "basic" cards and done so prior to any "refresh" of inferior figures (ex: every OT Chewbacca since 04) or mods of these figures (ex: TSC Boba Fett, 30AC Han Solo).

I say just do some killer Evolution sets with Qui Gon and like prequel characters and we are for the most part getting very good quality, and if priced at $19.99 that's not bad for three "good" figures nowadays.

That's not a bad idea, but when taking account the previously released Evolutions sets, it would only really work for one Prequel character  - Obi-Wan. He's the only other PT char who has significant changes throughout all 3 movies. Padme may work throughout the first 2 movies, but they would be hard-pressed to sell her set at retail.

These are $6 (No figure should be $7, that's bull**** unto itself) figures on $10-$12 packages, and that's a real screwjob many are happy to live with.  Now don't get me wrong, I love the vintage style cards and everything, and I don't mind the sprinkling of vintage every year...  But you SHOULD get an SA QGJ, you SHOULD get SA Obi-Wan from every film, you SHOULD get SA Army builders...  And when you don't get Super Articulation, you should at least get the level of quality that the 2006 Death STar Gunner delivered, or the Cantina Wave...

THIS is why I want to see an end to the "vintage" line. It's a nice novelty, but it's starting to stretch thin in terms of selection - I question putting Bossk and IG-88 (though it's an awesome figure) in this year's lineup - as well as putting the additional dents in our wallet when they have an increased field of competition from within their own brand and elsewhere. They know we'll buy this crap (and I'm every bit as guilty as everyone else for that) so they see no need to put the efforts elsewhere, i.e. SA or near-SA figures in the "basic" line, but it's damn annoying.

Also as an aside since I started thinking about this as I was writing above. In Adam Pawlus' various Q&A's and FOTDs on GH often mentions that a good toy needn't necessarily have super-articulation coming out the gills. And he's right about that, but the additional articulation when done properly enhances the play experience for the kids and makes for a better product for us collectors, who despite them saying otherwise Hasbro does pander to. Hell we've seen with such figures as the ROTS #6 Clone that near-SA quality can work with the action features they like to give kids, so both can make a good toy seperately, together they can make a great toy. Just wanted to state that while I had the opportunity.  :P

Offline Rob

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Re: Let's discuss the future of the retro-vintage line.
« Reply #126 on: May 22, 2007, 07:48 PM »
THIS is why I want to see an end to the "vintage" line. It's a nice novelty, but it's starting to stretch thin in terms of selection - I question putting Bossk and IG-88 (though it's an awesome figure) in this year's lineup - as well as putting the additional dents in our wallet when they have an increased field of competition from within their own brand and elsewhere. They know we'll buy this crap (and I'm every bit as guilty as everyone else for that) so they see no need to put the efforts elsewhere, i.e. SA or near-SA figures in the "basic" line, but it's damn annoying.

If there's one thing in Hasbro's line-up that isn't crap, it's the vintage style figures.  They're the highest quality sculpts (threepio notwithstanding) in awesome collectible packaging.  And like you pointed out, you're as guilty for buying it as anyone.  As always, no one's forcing anyone to buy anything - if you don't like it, don't buy it.  If enough people feel the same way, it will stop being profitable and they'll stop being made.  In the mean time I agree with you that I want to see an end to the vintage line - right at about 95 figures or so.   8)

Offline Jesse James

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Re: Let's discuss the future of the retro-vintage line.
« Reply #127 on: May 22, 2007, 09:19 PM »
I kind of dig the packaging and I don't feel bad about getting IG-88 and Bossk...  I guess maybe the best "compromise" is to agree ONLY to actual vintage reproductions instead of getting into "Prequal-vintage", or Never-Vintage Vintage like a Fleet Trooper or Tarkin figure...

Does that make any sense?

I'd personally say that $7 isn't a value on a 3.75" action figure AT ALL though...  Not to say it isn't better than $10+ though obviously.  I just feel we're screwed on price since late 2005.  SA or not, that $7 is a TON of money for one small plastic man and it's a bit of bull**** IMO as SW is probably the most expensive toy line in terms of "bang for your buck" I would think.  Comparatively speaking, no figure near that scale costs near that much...  License or not, that's expensive.  $6 max is what I consider fair, personally.

Does the $10-ish price stick in you AS badly if it's a lock that they'd only ever do actual Vintage figures?  To me, not quite as badly, but I teeter on the fence about how much I'd hate paying $10 for a Chief Chirpa, or even a Jawa.  I know some have a special place in their heart for him as part of the original 12 but for me he's half the figure, and would bug the **** out of me to get, half the figure for the same over-inflated price.  I dunno.

I think at the end of the day, if Hasbro guaranteed quality to at least match the Death Star Trooper of last year, I wouldn't care if the vintage "line" went away completely.
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Offline Rob

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Re: Let's discuss the future of the retro-vintage line.
« Reply #128 on: May 22, 2007, 09:23 PM »
Maybe I'm being gullible, but with gas and oil prices what they are compared to 4 or 5 years ago and factoring in a little bit for inflation, I don't have a hard time believing that it costs about 40% more ($5.00 ----> $7.00) to remain profitable while at the same time delivering a higher quality product.  $7.00 sucks, but we can't expect things to sit at $4.99 forever.

Offline Jesse James

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Re: Let's discuss the future of the retro-vintage line.
« Reply #129 on: May 22, 2007, 09:42 PM »
I'd agree if EVERYTHING in the toy aisle had jumped, or even 50% had seen significant price increasing since say 1990.  Nothing has though...  That's where the cynic in my says it's all simply "they'll pay it, so we'll price it as such".  But you see licensed lines from significantly smaller companies come out, deliver a lot, and it seemingly comes in at $5 at most...  I give Hasbro (& retail) the leeway, it's just the jump from $6 to $7 that I finally said to myself that I think they're taking advantage of the masses.

I mean, think about it too...  2005, just 2 years ago, we were paying lower prices than the year previous to it, and then it just seemed the popularity stuck, and with the popularity sticking the price crept a little higher and a little higher... 

The same thing sticks in my mind about the 3" Titanium line too.  It's sudenly a shocking surprise hit, and with it comes a $1 price increase...  I dunno.  Inflation's an obvious fact with all things in life, but it seems like things come a lot quicker with the Star Wars brand on them.
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Offline Rob

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Re: Let's discuss the future of the retro-vintage line.
« Reply #130 on: May 22, 2007, 09:56 PM »
It could be as simple as applying the price increase for the whole line to the part most likely to be able to absorb an increase in price and still sell.

If the repainted Jedi Starfighters jumped to $25.00 and the Battle Packs hopped up to $25.00, the probably wouldn't sell.  Basic figures continue to do well at $7.00.

I'm just playing Devil's advocate, but I do think it's reasonable to assert that production expenses have gone no where but up over the last 5 or 6 years.

Offline Nicklab

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Re: Let's discuss the future of the retro-vintage line.
« Reply #131 on: May 22, 2007, 10:07 PM »
You know that the increase in oil prices has to be affecting EVERYTHING.  From manufacturing to shipping, higher oil prices are going to impact the entire process.  Higher oil prices equals higher plastics prices.  Add in the fact that Hasbro has to pay $200 million to buy back stock from Lucasfilm and it's pretty obvious that Hasbro is going to pass on that increase in cost to the customers.  We are also among the most loyal fanbases that any intellectual property has ever enjoyed, protestations to the contrary be damned.  If a $1 or $2 increase in figure prices from movies years to non-movie years is going to be a problem for collectors, then maybe they should re-examine their relationship with the hobby, financial or otherwise.  The increase in price in a non-movie year is directly related to the drop in sales volume that happens when there is not the cross-promotional tie-in that a movie provides.  I've also seen price increases with Hasbro's Marvel line and the Spiderman line.  Toys are just getting more expensive.

I really like the vintage line.  I used to be a carded and loose completist but I gave that up in 2002 with the line for Attack Of The Clones.  There was just too much volume.  But when Hasbro came up with the Vintage OTC line I had an active interest in collecting a carded line again.  And it was being done in such a way that Hasbro was providing a protective clamshell for the figure, it was fairly limited in quantities, the figures were the highest quality we had ever seen and the cards were fantastic!  There's definitely a value added aspect to the line and I understand the increased costs involved.  And add in the fact that I along with a lot of other collectors in my age range (late 20's to early 40's) who grew up with the Kenner line have more money to devote to the hobby than when we were kids.  Just witness how many high end collectibles companies are producing Star Wars product right now.

As for this new RS poll?  Well, we had to see something like this coming.  The fact is that this line is quickly running out of core characters to populate it.  And I daresay that collectors would go bananas if Hasbro did what Kenner did back in the day and started releasing versions of Vader on cards specific to the first movie and ROTJ.  The PT is still fertile ground for some core characters in a premium format and plenty of army builders.  That being said, I could go for two Vintage style waves per year.  Do an OT vintage wave in the spring and a PT vintage style wave in the fall.  But my fear for the vintage line is that it's going to get dilluted as we run out of core characters and army builders.  Because even though we had some solid characters like Greedo and the Tusken Raider in last year's VTSC line, they weren't super strong sellers.  Who's to say that other cantina aliens would sell well in this format?

Just look at which OT core characters are left:

LUKE SKYWALKER
-Hoth
-ROTJ
-Stormtrooper Disguise

HAN SOLO
-Bespin Gear
-Carbonite Chamber

PRINCESS LEIA
-Hoth
-Bespin

C-3PO
-Cargo net

LANDO CALRISSIAN
-Skiff Guard
-General

VADER/ANAKIN SKYWALKER
-POTF Anakin Skywalker

EMPORER PALPATINE
-Mail-away
-Carded Emporer
« Last Edit: May 22, 2007, 10:27 PM by Nicklab »
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Offline Rob

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Re: Let's discuss the future of the retro-vintage line.
« Reply #132 on: May 22, 2007, 10:28 PM »
Just to clarify - re-releases on VOTC cards should only be of the existing VOTC sculpt.  IE the Vader we have, but on a SW card.  Not Bespin Duel Vader or some other Vader slapped onto a Vintage Style card.

Offline Nicklab

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Re: Let's discuss the future of the retro-vintage line.
« Reply #133 on: May 22, 2007, 10:36 PM »
If that were to happen I completely agree...it would have to be a vintage sculpt.  But even that does not seem like an attractive alternative at this price point.  Frankly I don't even find the prospect of the 30AC ANH tin Vader being reissued on a Star Wars card that appealing.  The same goes for the Early Bird Chewbacca.  Just the thought of putting a reissue on a vintage card seems borderline scandalous, even if those are a couple of very good figures.

Still, there are a couple of vintage figures that might be worthy of being re-done.  Obi-Wan comes to mind.  And maybe the Tatooine Luke.
« Last Edit: May 22, 2007, 10:41 PM by Nicklab »
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Offline Morgbug

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Re: Let's discuss the future of the retro-vintage line.
« Reply #134 on: May 23, 2007, 12:19 AM »
Can somebody explain to me how they're going to do vintage prequel figures?  They never appeared on any of the SW/ESB/ROTJ/POTF cardbacks, so how exactly are they going to work this?  Really, is anyone really excited to see the TPM cardback reissued a scant 8 years down the road?  It's not vintage.

I'm sorry, but I just see asking for prequel figures on this style of card sort of like handing Hasbro the lube and telling them to have their way with you.  Hey, I'm all for high quality sculpts of young Obi and Qui-Gon.  But it's like I keep telling the damn Ewok fans - your love for that **** begat Jar-Jar, so be careful what you're asking for.
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