Author Topic: Drop in Collector Interest?  (Read 9167 times)

Offline Nicklab

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Re: Drop in Collector Interest/Figures?
« Reply #105 on: March 22, 2010, 12:59 AM »
I'm thinking the live action series is going to give the overall line a huge boost

Unless of course it's based on Rogue Squadron and more Rebel Pilots...  :-X


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Offline Jesse James

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Re: Drop in Collector Interest/Figures?
« Reply #106 on: March 22, 2010, 02:38 AM »
Back in 2002 coming out of the Power of the Jedi line, there wasn't a dedicated "Attack of the Clones" line - there was Star Wars: Saga and sure, for the first year, most of the figures were from Attack of the Clones, but as the first year ended and we moved into the second year of that packaging design, we started to get figures mixed in from the other four movies that were out.

In 2005 when ROTS hit, the line for an entire year was 100% dedicated to that movie.

If the Clone Wars figures had been released in a realistic style, back in August 2008 the line could have gone for a year with only releasing Clone Wars related figures and the figures from the six movies could have taken a break and I don't think anyone would have minded. With realistic Clone Wars figures no one would have been running around freaking out that the realistic line was  "done".

Stopping realistic figures entirely for a year to focus on the new media wasn't an option with those figures being done in a non-realistic style.

So there is actually a huge difference between the two. Collectors who have passed on the Clone Wars line due to the figure style wouldn't be passing on the Clone Wars line since it would be in line with all of the rest of the figures they already have.

I wouldn't say there's a "Huge difference" between the two Pete, but I would say that there are some differences...  However, 2002's line didn't perform up to snuff by most accounts either, and that's why 2005's saw significant changes too...  so it's a little tough to use it as a gauge in the analogy itself.

Also, there's a pretty big difference in movies and an animated TV series too.

I don't personally think sales of realistic figures would've been less than the animated figures.  I do believe though that the current/ongoing media support tends to generate the most interest though.  So with that in mind, and with the thought in mind that Clone Wars runs longer than a film's life in the limelight, I think Clone Wars would still be outselling the movie figures, and as such Hasbro would be doing other things people find annoying.

For instance repacking CW stuff as they do now, they'd be doing it in the realistic line under its sku in this hypothetical situation, and people would now be complaining the mantra, "I can't find (Insert random adult-collector-targeted-figure here) because of all these Ahsoka's, Anakin's and Obi-Wan's!", or something along those lines.

And likewise if the SKU's were separated between a realistic everything else line, and realistic Clone Wars line, then I still think it possible Clone Wars would be outselling that "Legacy" line in the hypothetical, and retailers would respond in-kind.

I don't know though, it just seems to me that things wouldn't be too much different, except that guys like me would be more actively looking for Clone Wars figures, as well as the regular film and EU figures.

All that said though, it still boils down to this is what Lucasfilm wanted of course, not Hasbro's decision at all...  I'm not so sure on Hasbro's part how much they "fought" for a realistic line, but I got the impression they at least strongly considered going that route but Lucasfilm didn't want it.  *shrug*  The realistic Anakin looked insanely cool, and since a lot of the CW3D characters are based on actors and things that actually exist, I think its translation to realistic sculpting is evident...  Obi-Wan looks like Ewan McGregor, Anakin like Hayden Christensen, and so on...  just in their CW outfits.

Personally I agree on the point about people avoiding the animated because they're avoiding animated style only though...  I'm in that group as I noted.  I tend not to buy animated figures because I consider it a wholely separate line, so I don't feel my collection's missing something without it.  I do, however, like the thought of realistic styled versions of these characters.  I like your optomism on them getting done realistically too, but you never know.

I like to think what you're suggesting is how it would be, I just don't know if it would be based on past trends in the line.  You're right though, there's plenty of differences in the movie lines and the CW3D line, but some of the differences work in favor of the animated style idea though as well.
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Offline McMetal

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Re: Drop in Collector Interest/Figures?
« Reply #107 on: March 22, 2010, 11:06 AM »
I haven't been following this conversation all that much - but are you saying that the realistic Clone Wars figures bombed?  I seem to recall most of them doing pretty good, but the animated ones having more problems.  A lot of those hit clearance in quantity.

Just my impression really, not based on any hard data. I've looked through those 2003 offerings though and they are pretty limited, IE: not a huge # of figures, vehicles, etc. I assume if they had strong sales Hasbro would have had a more robust assortment of swag.

By contrast, I could never find the first incarnation of animated figures at retail, although admittedly I was pretty clueless about tracking stuff down back then. I had to get nearly all of them on eBay.

Really I was just sort of making the point that it seemed like they tried going down the realistic/animated route before, and for whatever reason decided to go in a different direction. (Thankfully, IMHO)
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Offline GrandMoffNick

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Re: Drop in Collector Interest/Figures?
« Reply #108 on: March 22, 2010, 11:20 AM »
I still am buying the way I have been for most of my colletcing life so the total I buy is the same, but with the stores being so dry what I find is I'm not as excited about Star Wars toys in between buys. So instead of thinking Star Wars all the time, I'm concentrating on something else I collect that I can actually find to buy on a relatively frequent basis.

I feel like over a long enough period of time I could say, " whatever, I'm not gonna hunt, I'll just buy when I'm in a store anyway if I see". So the down time in the middle could lower my interest in the long run if that makes sense.
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Offline Morgbug

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Re: Drop in Collector Interest/Figures?
« Reply #109 on: March 22, 2010, 11:28 AM »
What is Hasbro supposed to do if the retailers ain't buyin' the stuff?

Why would a retailer buy product if Hasbro ships them yet another case of the first wave of Legacy?  A brand new case of Legacy figures popped up at my local Walmart in December.  Yarna was on the front of the pegs.  If I was the retailer and that's what Hasbro sent me I'd them them to F. off as well.  It's not a chicken and egg argument here, Hasbro, at least in Canada, has routinely made the retailers bend over and take it from behind by sending craptastic waves to the retailer leaving them with useless, non-moving stock on the pegs. 
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Offline CHEWIE

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Re: Drop in Collector Interest/Figures?
« Reply #110 on: March 22, 2010, 01:29 PM »
I haven't been following this conversation all that much - but are you saying that the realistic Clone Wars figures bombed?  I seem to recall most of them doing pretty good, but the animated ones having more problems.  A lot of those hit clearance in quantity.

Just my impression really, not based on any hard data. I've looked through those 2003 offerings though and they are pretty limited, IE: not a huge # of figures, vehicles, etc. I assume if they had strong sales Hasbro would have had a more robust assortment of swag.


I think part of it was timing on Hasbro's part - it was a short lived line, but I am guessing that was their intention as the ROTS line was soon to follow.

And I don't think the CW animated stuff that is out now is a bad thing - I don't collect it, but it's clearly pretty popular.  Hasbro might as well milk it while they can... as long as they don't forget about the realistic figures too; I'm cool with it.

Offline CHEWIE

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Re: Drop in Collector Interest/Figures?
« Reply #111 on: March 22, 2010, 01:36 PM »
What is Hasbro supposed to do if the retailers ain't buyin' the stuff?

Why would a retailer buy product if Hasbro ships them yet another case of the first wave of Legacy?  A brand new case of Legacy figures popped up at my local Walmart in December.  Yarna was on the front of the pegs.  If I was the retailer and that's what Hasbro sent me I'd them them to F. off as well.  It's not a chicken and egg argument here, Hasbro, at least in Canada, has routinely made the retailers bend over and take it from behind by sending craptastic waves to the retailer leaving them with useless, non-moving stock on the pegs. 


Man, that's how I have felt a lot the past year.  I know the situation up there isn't pretty with figures, so I guess I shouldn't complain too much.  But damn - it's so frustrating when a retailer's stock of figures finally dwindles down to where there's room for some new stuff, only to have it packed again by pegwarmers or by figures that you KNOW aren't going to be popular because Hasbro used old/outdated tooling. 

I think Hasbro really did a poor job the past two years with how they handled a lot of this - some of it having to do with case ratios as well.  How can the retailers be blamed for that?  I don't think they can, but I guess that's debatable.

Offline Brian

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Re: Drop in Collector Interest/Figures?
« Reply #112 on: March 22, 2010, 03:28 PM »
The interesting thing about the live action series?  According to IMDB and some recent reports the live action series could debut as early as the 2011/12 television series.  That in itself is interesting.  A live action series that debuts in 18 months might be a boon to the line.  And it could revitalize interest in the Expanded Universe, too. 

Ultimately though, we have to wait and see what happens.  There's a serious possibility that the vintage style packaging could be strong enough to bring some people back into the fold.  But we'll also have to wait and see if the economy rebound and gives collectors a little more breathing room with their personal finances.

This is probably a whole seperate conversation, but that is something to think about too.  If, by some miracle, the live action series does get off the ground in the next couple years - while CW3D is still going too - what would become of any movie figures?  I know we have three lines (technically) at retail now, but with both CW and whatever the live action series is called having current media support, I wonder how much room there would be in the line for more movie stuff.  Maybe some of the live action and movie characters will overlap, but it didn't sound like there would be a lot of "big names" from the films the last we heard about it (which has been awhile, at least officially).  Something to think about.

I agree with Jesse in that even if the line was done realistically, and the SKUs were still seperate, I'm guessing CW would still be the top seller.  The only advantage would be that CW would likely be even stronger because of more collectors probably buying in for the realistic styling.  I don't know if the sales are as horrid as Hasbro says (although they do have the data), because like others, if we see Legacy waves hit retail at all here, they are usually gone in a matter of days.  That being said, we see a lot more CW product come and go from the stores overall.  Plus, I think we can see a drop in collector interest just in our forums here.  We're probably a fairly good example here since we have a lot of collectors who started with the OT, stayed through the PT, and now are evaluating things with CW, etc.  We've seen a lot of our bigger collectors here either quit, scale way back, or even just cut back here and there.  I know I have, and I've seen a lot of others too.  Prices have a lot to do with that, as well as the mountain of stuff we've all accumulated, but it is happening nonetheless.

Offline Pete_Fett

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Re: Drop in Collector Interest/Figures?
« Reply #113 on: March 22, 2010, 03:43 PM »
I apologize if I have not communicated my point clearly.

I'm saying that there WOULD NOT be separate SKUs if the Clone Wars line was done in a realistic style. There wouldn't need to be.

It would be like during 2005 when we got Revenge of the Sith figures and that's it. There wouldn't be a separate SKU for realistic figures vs. Clone Wars figures. There would be a single line - "Star Wars Saga 2008/2009/2010". Movie figures would be on hiatus or peppered into the line here and there like they were during 2002. There would still probably be a Legends line, but there wouldn't be a separate "Legacy" line from "Clone Wars".

Yeah - sure there would be collectors who would stop collecting because there was no OT product, but those same collectors were around in 2005 complaining about no OT product then too.

There wouldn't be any "hey I can't find the 'Obscure Third Guy from the Left on Bespin' figure among all of those damn Ashokas!" - there would only be Ashoka. (nevermind the fact that finding a basic Ashoka figure in the wild still seems to be a difficult prospect)
« Last Edit: March 22, 2010, 03:47 PM by Pete_Fett »
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Offline CHEWIE

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Re: Drop in Collector Interest/Figures?
« Reply #114 on: March 22, 2010, 04:38 PM »
Sometimes I wonder if Hasbro is getting too many niches in their offerings... ugh. 

I say just eliminate Legends - or just figure out some better figures to include in that line.  Or dare I say, if the Comic Packs come back - try and include some rare figures from the past that are in high demand if they can work them in rather than blue Stormtrooper Luke and funky color Rebel Trooper.  Why not get  Revan, Malak, etc. into that format instead of crap repacks?

Offline Darby

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Re: Drop in Collector Interest/Figures?
« Reply #115 on: March 22, 2010, 08:28 PM »
I think the niches are inevitable, given how long the line is going.  The older SW gets, the more varied the age of its collectors, and consequently, their interests.  Hasbro could probably go on CW alone with the kids, but they'd be giving away too much easy money from a still substantial collector base, and really, the heart and soul of the brand.  So long as they're not willing to do that - and it's great they're not - the line will continue to splinter. 

Offline JACKOFTRADZE

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Re: Drop in Collector Interest/Figures?
« Reply #116 on: March 22, 2010, 10:53 PM »
I agree with the splinter age interest now.
I think we will see the great reset in the current line like OTC 2004. That line rereleased the most recognizable characters in the line with mostly repaint upgrades on "close to vintage style" cards (as well as the first round of Vintage) to get the kid & collector into the brand. It worked really well offering easy to recognize characters making it very easy to jump in plus it got the previous collectors interested in the brand again. If you recall that time 2003 was a limbo year for SWs.

Hasbro is going back to a proven formula that I personally think will work. If getting several resculpts and rereleases of recognizable characters helps the line survive to better days I am all for it. I have been reading some griping that there is not enough never before done characters. While there is a lot of dudes I want to see it really is scraping the sides of the barrel at this point in time. (Mind I did not say the bottom but we are getting damn close). To be truly honest I was not happy with the 2007 Bespin Luke so I am very glad to see him close to perfection now, it was always my favorite Luke costume. Denger needed the articulation upgrade and Hoth Leia was truly in need of a defining figure after a decade of waiting. While I really wanted Han Bespin the new Han is good enough to make the cut. I hope that Han Bespin will not use the bulky torso or that short hair head this one has so waiting on him may be worth it.

All in all as long as the price holds at $8 or less this line should revive the brand to a more comfortable level. It may not be 2006 again but it will surely not be the doom and gloom that seems to plague us in so many aspects. Even if things do not go as planned the line would shrink to a smaller offering with less new for awhile. There is too much money that would left on the table as Darby pointed out.
« Last Edit: March 22, 2010, 10:56 PM by JACKOFTRADZE »
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Offline CHEWIE

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Re: Drop in Collector Interest/Figures?
« Reply #117 on: March 22, 2010, 11:20 PM »
What I'm getting at with the niche thing is when Hasbro's managing three "niche" lines at once, it seems as though they have a much more difficult time handling distribution.  I don't remember there being this sort of problem in 2005, 2006 or 2007 - or at least not to this degree.  Maybe the further away they from the last movie, this is inevitable.

If they can get a handle on it better this Fall though, more power to them.  But something tells me they aren't going to.  I'll keep my fingers crossed of course, but I'm not going to hold my breath. 

Offline Darby

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Re: Drop in Collector Interest/Figures?
« Reply #118 on: March 23, 2010, 09:56 AM »
I agree Legends is the variable.  Distribution here (Iowa) doesn't seem to have the same issues others report.  I never really have an issue finding anything.  The last AOTC wave on the blue card never made it to most stores, but sits in bulk at Kohl's.  I'd prefer if Hasbro did away with Legends and focused the core characters in the CW and Vintage lines.  They do this anyway (the bulk of every CW case are repacks), so I wonder how many more of these they really need.

Offline Jeff

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Re: Drop in Collector Interest/Figures?
« Reply #119 on: March 23, 2010, 11:03 AM »
I say just eliminate Legends - or just figure out some better figures to include in that line.

Yeah, the real problem with Legends was when they decided to go "kid only" with that line.  Back when Legends was a 50/50 mix of kid/collector, it wasn't nearly as bad.  It would be nice if they could pull some of those Plos and Saesees from the Legends line and replace them with collector-targeted figures.

Just imagine a plentiful source of Hoth Rebel Trooper v2, Imp Scan Dude #2, Rebel Tech (from Yavin BP), GeoArena Battle Droid, Evolutions TIE Pilot, Ewok 2-pack repaints, R5-M2 (from Hoth BP), other AstroDroid repaints, etc.

If they started packing in collector-desired army builders and some new repaints like they did circa Legends 2007/early'08, I think there would be a lot less people out there angry with the line.  ;)
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