Author Topic: Let's discuss the future of the retro-vintage line.  (Read 20065 times)

Offline Matt

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Re: Let's discuss the future of the retro-vintage line.
« Reply #60 on: October 5, 2006, 05:38 PM »
With Hasbro acknowledging that there were some problems with the case ratios this year, I wonder if they'll take the opportunity to change 'em up a bit next year and stack 'em a bit more in favor of whatever army-builder they decide to go with.  It would make good business sense to put more troops out there and less potential pegwarmers.  Everybody wins.

And a slight change in topic:

Anyone think Spirit Anakin would be a good mail-in for next year?  Not only would it be a cool little throwback to the vintage line, but if they shipped it loose, they could also sidestep that pesky little issue of Giant Sebastian Shaw Face on the front of the card.

I'd love to see a new Spirit Anakin done up like the '04 OTC Spirit Ben, but with both Sebastian and Hayden heads included, so people could choose between the version they prefer.  But it could really only happen in the basic line or as a mail-in, due to the POTF cardback issue.

But, who am I kidding.  Next year's promotion will probably be George Lucas in Gamorrean Guard costume or something.

Offline Matt

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Re: Let's discuss the future of the retro-vintage line.
« Reply #61 on: October 5, 2006, 05:46 PM »
It's funny how poeple want the Power of the Force cards reproduced.  To me, those cards were one of the firts steps towards killing the SW line,  There was too mcuh black, and the character picture became smaller.  I bought all of the POTF figs when the hit in 1985, and even back then I felt the coins were nonsense.

I think the death of the line was less-due to what the cards looked like, and more-due to the fact that there were no more movies in the forseeable future at that point, and kids lost interest.  I, for one, totally lost interest in Star Wars sometime between Christmas '83 and Temple of Doom in Summer '84--well before the POTF line debuted.

And I do really like the look of the POTF cards--I love the logo, and there's an overall elegance to them that's lacking in the previous versions.

Offline speedermike

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Re: Let's discuss the future of the retro-vintage line.
« Reply #62 on: October 5, 2006, 06:40 PM »
Matt, I hear what you are saying.   I think that I reacted that way because for 6 or so years there was one type of card that I became very attached to.  And, no, I don't really think that design killed the line.  Interest was low, but Kenner did nothing to re start interest.  Had Kenner released more posable GI JOE type SW figures in 85, I think they could have sold a while longer.
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Offline Jeff

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Re: Let's discuss the future of the retro-vintage line.
« Reply #63 on: November 17, 2006, 04:01 PM »
From the latest round of Hasbro Q&A at JD:

Quote
** The new vintage figures will be out in May. The details on the line will be revealed at Toy Fair, in February. We can confirm that there will be six figures in this Asst.

IIRC, I think this is the current rumor list...

ANH
 Jawa - debunked by Hasbro in a Q&A answer: "will NOT be out in 2007"
TESB
  Luke Skywalker (Bespin Fatigues)
  Imperial Stormtrooper (Hoth Battle Gear)
  Han Solo (Bespin Outfit)
  Bossk
  IG-88 - added to the list by the foreign rumor sites shortly after the Jawa was outed by Hasbro
ROTJ
  Princess Leia Organa (Endor Battle Gear)


I guess we wait until Toy Fair for our confirmation of the six...
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Re: Let's discuss the future of the retro-vintage line.
« Reply #64 on: November 17, 2006, 04:37 PM »
Is this the right thread for me to re-iterate my inflexible position? 

I'm annoyed they haven't finished the original 12 figures in the VOTC line.  I can understand the desire for other figures that are either larger or perhaps more popular.  But IG-88 over a Jawa?  Why?  Isn't this line all about nostalgia wrapped up in the selection of figures, the style of cardback and the sculpt? 

What's wrong with doing a Jawa?  Yeah, it's a bit small, but I'm ok with that in this line.  Is the price unfair compared to a larger Luke Skywalker or Han Solo?  Sure, if you open the toys, at least to a degree.  But for a carded piece, no, I don't agree. 

And where's my freakin' Death Squad Commander?  Where's the love Hasbro?  An original 12 figure; an army builder; an imperial.  What's not to love. 

I'm not at all opposed to the bounty hunters being done but didn't the Jawas have a larger and more important role than Bossk or IG-88?  Look, you're (Hasbro) going to milk the line for all it's worth (and as long as you don't replicate the C-3PO fiasco) - that's fine and reasonable and I won't even complain about the notion, I'd love to see the entire vintage line of figures redone in VOTC style.  But don't wear out the bounty hunters, one per wave is more than enough.  Maybe spread out the Han/Luke figures a bit too. 

Hey, at least I said more than crap this time.
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Offline Darth_Anton

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Re: Let's discuss the future of the retro-vintage line.
« Reply #65 on: November 17, 2006, 06:18 PM »
Well said Brent. You can't get any more classic than the original 12.
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Offline Billy Ray

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Re: Let's discuss the future of the retro-vintage line.
« Reply #66 on: November 18, 2006, 11:50 AM »
I agree, especially with them releaseing the "Early Bird" set.  Would be nice if they finished off those figures pictured on the backdrop...and I really thought they were headed in that direction. 

The Death Squad Commander is long overdue and one of my favorite vintage figures....and none of that "Star Destroyer Commander" crap either.

As for the Jawa, we paid full price for VOTC R2 and Yoda didn't we?  I'd pay the $10 for the definitve Jawa with softgoods cape...heck, they could even release a VOTC vinyl cape Jawa for nostalgia's sake ala the tall, blue Snaggletooth from the K-Mart Cantina set.

Offline Artoo

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Re: Let's discuss the future of the retro-vintage line.
« Reply #67 on: November 18, 2006, 02:16 PM »
I would prefer a SG Jawa than a regular plastic one. More articulation.
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Offline Daigo-Bah

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Re: Let's discuss the future of the retro-vintage line.
« Reply #68 on: November 22, 2006, 12:59 AM »
Aside from the need for the Jawa to be Vintage packaged for the nostalgia aspect, I really think the regular line is better for it so that we get a pack-in droid or at least 2 jawas.  The Death Squad Commander on the other hand...  I'd also love to see a B-Wing pilot and A-Wing pilot in this line due to the complexity of their outfits.
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Offline Matt

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Re: Let's discuss the future of the retro-vintage line.
« Reply #69 on: December 11, 2006, 01:16 PM »
There was a really good Q & A from The Jawa this week, that gives some insight into what's left for the retro-vintage assortment:

In regards to the Vintage line, do you cater more to the collectors versus kids? I ask because in the last Q&A you mentioned your hopes to complete the classic vintage line, including the more obscure characters. I would guess that this was a more collector-oriented line due to the pricepoint and presentation, which would lead me to believe that even the obscure characters would still sell very well. And as there are still a few vintage figures that have not yet been remade in the modern line, such as the palace version of Klaatu, this would be a great way to see these unmade characters. In addition, it would be great to see updates of some earlier figures in the Vintage line such as Admiral Ackbar, Wicket, and the Ugnaughts for example. (TJ, 12/08/06)

The vintage line is definitely a collector-oriented product because of the price point and in a way, the aesthetics of the package and figures as well (kids don't care as much about articulation, for example).  However, there are also varying degrees of collector affinity for figures as well. The more obscure the figures get, some collectors will drop out and not get the whole assortment.  This is the difference between completist collectors, and collectors who cherry-pick their favorites.  The proof of this is in the rate of sales in the vintage line.  Troop builders aside, which of course have greater depth of purchase, vintage figures sell at a rate proportionate with their overall appeal as iconic Star Wars figures and also, with the excellence of the execution of the figure and degree of "must have"-ness.  So either some kids are skewing vintage (which is possible) or there are subtypes of collectors who are causing this effect.  We think the latter is the major factor.  So naturally, this paints a backdrop of uncertainty for the "last half" say of vintage.  Will waves made up of third-tier figures be as appealing as the first and more iconic 25 or so figures we will have done by next spring?  No, they won't be to the overall collecting audience.  So that's why we can't say, with certainty, that we will ever complete an entire vintage recreation line because of this.  Hopefully we will some day, but there are a lot of figures to go and we'll probably be doing mainline versions of them before we do vintage.

---

In other words, when they run out of main characters, army builders, and the "more iconic" secondary characters to do, that's probably gonna be it for the vintage line.

Offline Brian

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Re: Let's discuss the future of the retro-vintage line.
« Reply #70 on: December 11, 2006, 03:03 PM »
Thanks for pointing that out Matt, that's a good point.  It kind of seemed like a stretch that many of the other characters in the line would sell as $10 "collector" figures.  It would be neat to get the entire vintage line redone in this way/quality, but at the same time many figures have been recently resculpted in the regular line and turned out pretty nicely.  Also, I see they mention "25 or so done by spring" when they talk about the vintage line, and with 17 done so far, it sounds like we could have as many as 8 on the way - unless they are just giving a general, rounding-up type of number.

Offline Nicklab

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Re: Let's discuss the future of the retro-vintage line.
« Reply #71 on: December 11, 2006, 03:11 PM »
There was a really good Q & A from The Jawa this week, that gives some insight into what's left for the retro-vintage assortment:

In regards to the Vintage line, do you cater more to the collectors versus kids? I ask because in the last Q&A you mentioned your hopes to complete the classic vintage line, including the more obscure characters. I would guess that this was a more collector-oriented line due to the pricepoint and presentation, which would lead me to believe that even the obscure characters would still sell very well. And as there are still a few vintage figures that have not yet been remade in the modern line, such as the palace version of Klaatu, this would be a great way to see these unmade characters. In addition, it would be great to see updates of some earlier figures in the Vintage line such as Admiral Ackbar, Wicket, and the Ugnaughts for example. (TJ, 12/08/06)

The vintage line is definitely a collector-oriented product because of the price point and in a way, the aesthetics of the package and figures as well (kids don't care as much about articulation, for example).  However, there are also varying degrees of collector affinity for figures as well. The more obscure the figures get, some collectors will drop out and not get the whole assortment.  This is the difference between completist collectors, and collectors who cherry-pick their favorites.  The proof of this is in the rate of sales in the vintage line.  Troop builders aside, which of course have greater depth of purchase, vintage figures sell at a rate proportionate with their overall appeal as iconic Star Wars figures and also, with the excellence of the execution of the figure and degree of "must have"-ness.  So either some kids are skewing vintage (which is possible) or there are subtypes of collectors who are causing this effect.  We think the latter is the major factor.  So naturally, this paints a backdrop of uncertainty for the "last half" say of vintage.  Will waves made up of third-tier figures be as appealing as the first and more iconic 25 or so figures we will have done by next spring?  No, they won't be to the overall collecting audience.  So that's why we can't say, with certainty, that we will ever complete an entire vintage recreation line because of this.  Hopefully we will some day, but there are a lot of figures to go and we'll probably be doing mainline versions of them before we do vintage.

---

In other words, when they run out of main characters, army builders, and the "more iconic" secondary characters to do, that's probably gonna be it for the vintage line.

It could be taken another way.  Obviously they're going to need some kind of a core character in the lineup to keep driving things forward.  So I think that could mean that we may get a minimum of core characters per vintage lineup so that the lineups might get more troopers and other vintage figure resculpts.

But we might also wind up with something that we got in the vintage line.  We might wind up getting different cards for the same character, IE the vintage Chewbacca being issued on Star Wars, TESB and ROTJ cards.  I think that would probably be pretty bad for the line.
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Offline Daigo-Bah

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Re: Let's discuss the future of the retro-vintage line.
« Reply #72 on: December 11, 2006, 10:10 PM »
Your first idea makes a lot of sense, Nicklab- I'd be fine with a couple core characters so that we could get some obscure ones with them.  But I'm not sure I see Hasbro willing to produce multiple cardbacks at this price with the same molds we already purchased.  It's one thing to get repacks at the standard price, but I think they know after seeing how many Greedos and Endor Hans are still out there that it wouldn't be feasible to re-release $10-12 figures on multiple cardbacks.
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Offline Matt

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Re: Let's discuss the future of the retro-vintage line.
« Reply #73 on: December 12, 2006, 03:09 PM »
It could be taken another way.  Obviously they're going to need some kind of a core character in the lineup to keep driving things forward.  So I think that could mean that we may get a minimum of core characters per vintage lineup so that the lineups might get more troopers and other vintage figure resculpts.

But we might also wind up with something that we got in the vintage line.  We might wind up getting different cards for the same character, IE the vintage Chewbacca being issued on Star Wars, TESB and ROTJ cards.  I think that would probably be pretty bad for the line.

Oh, I agree--if they're planning to see the vintage line to it's conclusion, they're really gonna have to start thinning things out some.  Like you said, repacking and recarding the ones they've already done would be a natural way to extend the line.  More radical ways to do it would be adding in the "never done in the vintage line" OT characters and then prequel characters on vintage-esque cards.

But I don't think that's gonna happen, because "doing the entire range of the vintage line," while an interesting concept, also means that you're doing these high-end versions of third-tier figures from ROTJ and POTF (read: Ewoks).  And people were already bitching about paying $6-7 for tiny Chief Chirpa just a couple months ago--you think those same people are gonna be enthused about paying almost double that for, say, Romba, just for the novelty of the packaging?  I don't.  And the same goes for other lesser characters like the Rancor Keeper and Imperial Dignitary.  They were boring back then, and they're even more-boring today.  Figures like that have "pegwarmer" written all over them--even for the basic line.  No way they'll ever see the light of day on vintage-y cardbacks.

I think we'll see maybe two or three more waves after next year, just enough for them to do the remaining main characters and army builders, along with a few more-well-known secondary characters, and that'll be it.  Then it'll be time for something "new" at the $10-12 price range.  Maybe they could bring back the deluxe sets or something.

Offline Nicklab

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Re: Let's discuss the future of the retro-vintage line.
« Reply #74 on: December 12, 2006, 05:34 PM »
Believe me, if they get to the point where they're considering a vintage line Rancor Keeper, then they're gonna lose me!
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