Author Topic: Beginning of the End?  (Read 10480 times)

Offline Darby

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Re: product lull
« Reply #105 on: December 22, 2009, 10:27 AM »
I think the sheer lack of stuff early next year is the drag in the line that started in '08 (Hasbro said in one Q&A that collector purchases are down 30-40% - wow) finally catching up.  They're pulling way back, reorganizing, and coming back in the fall.  It's somewhat similar to what happened in early 2000 after the collapse of the EP1 line, except nowhere near as catastrophic.  Also, the CW line is going strong.

Offline Brian

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Re: product lull
« Reply #106 on: December 22, 2009, 12:34 PM »
I think the sheer lack of stuff early next year is the drag in the line that started in '08 (Hasbro said in one Q&A that collector purchases are down 30-40% - wow) finally catching up.  They're pulling way back, reorganizing, and coming back in the fall.  It's somewhat similar to what happened in early 2000 after the collapse of the EP1 line, except nowhere near as catastrophic.  Also, the CW line is going strong.

I think that might be it as well, plus this product lull (for the "realistic" line in particular) isn't really anything new.  It seems like we've been seeing it the past few years now.  We've discussed it in other threads here before, but I think the line in general (and that includes the "other" stuff outside of basic figures) seemed to need a streamlining and reorganizing anyway.  Hopefully all the rumors pan out, and we'll see a nice, collector-focused line for the "realistic" line from now on.  I also wonder (and I speculated on this in the Q and A thread) if it might be possible that we may be seeing a blu ray release of the Saga next fall or something too.

Offline Jabba the Slug

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Re: Beginning of the End?
« Reply #107 on: December 22, 2009, 01:44 PM »
Well, with all the over-exaggerations Hasbro's making about how exciting the new Basic Figure line is gonna be, I sure do hope they do well. I also hope they focus more on familiar characters - hardcore collector figures (Leesub Sirlin, Colton etc.) are cool, but they only help to make bad sales - we can only admit it. :( And then Hasbro blames that on US, the collectors.

Of course, the TCW line does well. I like that line, and it also has a kiddy appeal to it. But also because the Clone Wars TV series doesn't really have obscure characters. 
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Offline Nicklab

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Re: Beginning of the End?
« Reply #108 on: December 22, 2009, 07:01 PM »
Umm, WTF do all those Hasbro employees plan to do for the first part of 2009? Sit around and play Tetris? Are you guys putting ANYTHING out?

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Offline Rob

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Re: Beginning of the End?
« Reply #109 on: December 31, 2009, 04:16 PM »
I certainly think that the 60% rise in the price of a basic figure since 2005 has a lot to do with the 30% - 40% decline in sales.

Offline Pete_Fett

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Re: Beginning of the End?
« Reply #110 on: December 31, 2009, 04:32 PM »
I certainly think that the 60% rise in the price of a basic figure since 2005 has a lot to do with the 30% - 40% decline in sales.

There is definitely truth in this, but at some point, the continued increase of price is going to start to contribute to an increase in the decline of sales.

I think they would be in a much better position if they dropped the price of figures back down to $5.99.

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Offline Brian

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Re: Beginning of the End?
« Reply #111 on: January 1, 2010, 10:59 AM »
Yeah, I think you're right about that price point, although I doubt we'll see it.  It is amazing what a difference the holiday price cuts made in both the SW basic figures and the Joe movie figures - it really seemed to help things move.  Star Wars doesn't necessarily have a problem with that for the most part, but it did seem like things picked up when WM had them cut back a bit.  Man, $5.99 would be great though, I miss those days (or even the $4.77 days at WM).

Offline Master_Phruby

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Re: Beginning of the End?
« Reply #112 on: January 1, 2010, 12:47 PM »
I know I personally skipped buying figures because of the price. $7.99 or more is too much. There is no way to afford buying every figure at that price. $6 was much better.
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Offline Morgbug

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Re: Beginning of the End?
« Reply #113 on: January 1, 2010, 06:39 PM »
I gotta suggest you probably won't see that price cut.  I believe the price increase is related as much to the poor US economy and devalued dollar as much or probably significantly more than greed on the part of Hasbro.  Your dollar is now very nearly par with the Canadian dollar on an ongoing basis.  Our price is typically $9.97 and some of that is due to additional (prior to retail) taxation, but otherwise very similar to what you are now seeing.  Should your economy recover, relative to the world stage rather than just sunny articles in the media, I'd bet you'll see a price drop in figures, but not until then. 
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Offline Rob

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Re: Beginning of the End?
« Reply #114 on: January 2, 2010, 12:49 PM »
I don't disagree with that, I'm just saying that these things are definitely correlated.  They really are for me at least... at $8.79 per figure after tax, I'm not army building anything but the Scanner tech, I've got strict limits on army building... when they hit $6.99 each, I stopped collecting carded in addition to loose... my own purchases have probably declined in proportion with the price increases.  I think Hasbro's smart to scale the line down a little to mirror people's current spending habits - it's become bloated.

Offline Morgbug

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Re: Beginning of the End?
« Reply #115 on: January 2, 2010, 01:36 PM »
Sorry, yes, I agree, they are correlated.  I certainly wasn't trying to detract from the notion that collector interest has significantly declined because of a rather dramatic increase in price. 

Though I'm always baffled somewhat when Hasbro says collector sales dropping is affecting them.  I'm sure someone else has pointed it out, but we're routinely told that collectors don't drive the significant portion of the sales.  Certainly it's easy to see kids are snapping up the Clone Wars stuff thanks to a successful (and good though I watch it relatively little) cartoon series.  Why always pick on collectors?  Because they always pick on Hasbro, I suppose.
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Offline Jesse James

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Re: Beginning of the End?
« Reply #116 on: January 2, 2010, 03:19 PM »
CW locally seems to have hit a plateu as well, leading into Christmas.  Sales of animated figures by my guesses slowed down around the time the series stopped basically airing new episodes for an extended period of time.  Right before Christmas...  not smart.

Locally though the 3D figures are hitting a bit of a rut IMO.  Even new ones don't go fast.  Only Cad Bane comes and goes steadily off the pegs.
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Offline darth_sidious

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Re: Beginning of the End?
« Reply #117 on: January 2, 2010, 09:46 PM »
I think Hasbro is at the point where they realize whats going on now, compared to the last 5 years - where they released countless products every year like the world was ending.  The pricepoint for a basic figure is significant, but I also think the amount of product available makes a huge impact.  Many of us started collecting with the 'collect them all' mentality - which simply isnt the case anymore.  For some, if they cant own every figure Hasbro puts out - they'll abandon the line.  Whether its for financial reasons or being overwhelmed with too many products, adult collectors leaving the hobby is the end result.  Collectors are being much more selective on what they buy and they are skipping a lot of the sub-lines and exclusives.  As a result we're seeing them go on hiatus.

Its simple - many of us have been collecting modern figures for a decade, some of us even longer - we're running out of room, we're being selective with our spending, and many of us want to focus on characters we'd like to own for the first time or have been waiting for resculpts since the vintage line.  The core of SW collecting remains in the basic figure line - making it affordable and readily available are a few ways Hasbro could secure its health on the pegs.

Offline jedi_master_sal

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Re: Beginning of the End?
« Reply #118 on: January 4, 2010, 12:23 PM »
Many good points here.

Price increases beyond reasonable consumer expectations
Display/storage issues
Ever aging collecting base
etc.

Personally, I've planned for years to draw down my budget for SW, so the recession and price increases only played a small part. Basically it made it even easier to stay within the budget I afforded to SW toys.

I don't expect Hasbro to lower the price of toys. They've gotten used to us (and by us I mean collectors and kids and their parents alike) paying top dollar for an action figure. There is definitely some greed in that aspect. What we can only hope for is no new price increases for many years to come.

I wouldn't mind seeing the BaD parts go away if it meant a dollar drop in figure prices, but that remains to be seen. The line definitely needs to consolidate to two lines instead of three. In fact I could see it all being one line.

With 12 figures in a case, there are many options for case assortment. Here are some examples:
Case A-Even Split
This case includes 4 figures each of Animated, Realistic, Legends (can be both Animated and Realisitic reissues)

Case B-shortpacked Legends
This case includes 4 Animated and 6 Realistic figures as well as 2 Legends figures. Or the alternate 6 Animated, 4 Realistic and 2 Legends.

Case C-Heavy Animated
Case includes 8 Animated, 4 Realistic NO Legends.

Case D-Heavy Realistic
Case includes 4 Animated, 8 Realistic NO Legends.

Case E-Animated Double Up
Case includes 2X each of 6 Animated figures No Realistic, No Legends

Case F-Realistic Double Up
Case includes 2X each of 6 Realistic figures No Animated, No Legends

in all cases, NONE of the Animated or Realistic figures are rereleases unless they are considered "Legends."

Legends really needs to be pared down. Yes, Hasbro, we understand you say that helps to keep costs down. But it's at the expense of precious peg space. When we see a lot of Legends stuff, not only are we not seeing NEW figures, but we're not seeing the reissued stuff move either. This can't be good for the line. You may have saved production costs, but at the cost of the consumer actually BUYING your product. We know you get tired of hearing from we collectors that we want new stuff, but that is just the way it is. You ask us to buy Battle Packs with multiple reissues in them with MAYBE one new or retooled figure. That doesn't jive too well with many of us. Also, with regards to the Legends line, many of us simply don't buy into it.

I'll give you a prime example. I'm a "cured" Army Builder. I used to go nuts buying troopers. Not any more. When I started seeing clones in the Legends line for the SAME price as new figures when just the year prior they were a dollar less, well, I just wouldn't bring myself to buy any of the more expensive troopers when I was getting absolutely nothing more new for more of my money. And sorry, but the clone weapons locker just doesn't cut it. It's not worth a dollar more. Heck half the guns I wouldn't ever use.

If the price increased, et al are the beginning of the end for SW, I'm fine with it. I have an overwhelming majority of figures I've wanted and many I never expected to see in plastic.

Hasbro can feel free to blame us. But we truly are only a small part of it. Whatever the case, it's been a good run. I don't welcome the end when it comes, but I'll accept it and move on.
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Offline Jabba the Slug

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Re: Beginning of the End?
« Reply #119 on: January 4, 2010, 01:02 PM »
A lotta people say the BOGO 2-packs aren't too healthy for the line (Jeditemplearchives.com even did a report on it) All the unused products that have been sitting forever at the warehouses are now being released in a 2-pack. Personally, I like the 2-pack idea for only $8.00, but at the same time, the BOGO packs show just how much stuff Hasbro failed to distribute at first.  :(  
« Last Edit: January 4, 2010, 01:02 PM by Jabba the Slug »
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