These are definitely a head scratcher. If it is indeed from the "vintage throwback" angle, I guess I can appreciate that some. In some cases, I can even understand the sturdier toy aspect. It doesn't happen with all of the newer releases, but I will admit that some do feel fairly fragile (and that goes for many lines these days). Thinking back to the vintage days, I don't think I ever had a SW figure break back then.
Anyways, not sure what to think of these. I, like others, haven't really paid any attention to the battle packs for awhile now anyways, so they don't effect me much either way. Plus, we already have what I would consider "ultimate" or near ultimate versions of all these characters already. We've had situations similar to this before, but I don't understand why they don't just repack those versions (or even others) if they're going to release these characters anyways. It is hard to tell really clearly, but the sculpts might be decent on these, but the articulation is obviously lacking. If we had seen these in '95 I'm sure they would have looked great, but the line has just come so far since then.
It just seems strange that they would do this. They have to know it would get collectors in a tizzy (especially after talking them up in the TF presentation), and they could have put out battle packs with the new Maul and the TVC Qui-Gon and Obi-Wan - all figures that were already made. Same with the Bespin pack. I think these become a little more concerning if it is a sort of "testing the waters" scenario. I'm not saying it would happen, as I think they are abundantly clear that collectors want more articulation, etc. - but what if they wanted to switch the line over to figures like this? It could be interesting. I guess we have talked on the forums in the past about how they are getting closer to covering everything, perhaps this is a different direction they are thinking about. Probably not the case, but like it was mentioned, the SW line has been a little weird lately so you never know. If they were going that route, I think they'd have to drop the price considerably for these to sell at all as basic figures.