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View Full Version : I don't know anymore. Please read



rherk
08-25-2002, 12:13 AM
I have the need to express my views to you. I m sure someone from Hasbro will read this. However I'm almost certain it isn't anyone of great importance with the company. Although, it doesn't matter just need to get this off my chest.

What has happened? How can a company go from making the best to making the worst? From the 1980's, you have marketed the most incredible action figure lines (Star Wars;originally Kenner, Transformers, G.IJoe). They sold themselves with quality and design. However were accompanied with excellent cartoons or movies.

Just like all things, there must come an end and so they all did with the end of the 80's.

A new beginning:

In the early to mid 90's Hasbro brought back 2 of those classic lines. First, Transformers. With the inventive new line, "Beast Wars". Whether it was your bag or not, it must be respected as a fresh new idea backed with character development, great packaging and fairly accurate depictions of the characters on the show. Well done. Second, the return of Star Wars. Although there were a lot of aspects that needed improvement (over bulked sculps, inaccurrate accessories) you could tell there was passion there. The team involved wanted to improve. There was consistancy.

Now:

I don't know how many have seen the new cartoon for Transformers or seen the toys but I can tell you there is no passion there! I'm not an idiott, I know your in the biz to make money. That is goal #1. Understood! but anyone who knows anything about marketing or business knows you have to start off with a good product. Who cares about little minicons? What a terrible idea. The only thing about that line that shows quality is the packaging design which if I'm correct, the team that did the comic was involved with.

Star Wars figures were just reaching perfection with the last of the POTJ line. WOW! They were all satisfying, accurate and fun. Now, with the saga series, 1 out of 4 figures looks decent! again, I'm not stupid, you've gotta do what you gatta do th make your money but who taught you guys that dissappointing your hardcore fans(who will carry this line through the non-movie years and there are a lot of us) is the way to go.

I know, if I don't like it I don't have to buy it. Screw that! I love Star Wars! I love Transformers! I wanna spend all my extra money on quality designed pieces of plastic! They make me happy. That's right! When I come home from a miserable day of work, nothing pleases me more then picking up a piece of my collected universe and admiring it.

I am passionate about toys. There are a lot of good products out there. Lots of quality sculpts, designs and playthings. However, Hasbro you own the rights to my favorites. Please, I beg you, hire someone who cares and understands and has a great business sence. There are a lot of them out there. I know, I;m one.

P.S. Man, I could have butchered the new G.I.Joe line. However, I think looking at them, they do all the talking.

Thank you
Randy H.

AdmiralPiett
08-25-2002, 04:41 AM
I agree the new GI Joe line is terrible. They were doing ok over the past 2 years when they released those 2 packs and remade classic vehicles like the HISS, MOBAT tank, AWE striker, and Wild Bill's Dragonfly helicopter. I bought all those vehicles because the molds were classic GI Joe at it's best.
I think you're being kind of harsh on the Saga line though. Sure, there are some bad figs like Padme, Han Endor, etc. and sometimes the lightsaber tips break, but Hasbro's also given us some A1 quality Saga figs like Jango KE, Palpatine, Bespin Luke and Vader, Nexu, Djas Puhr, and now Ephant Mon, just to name a few. Though I agree that they were near perfection with some POTJ figs like FX-7, Boshek, and R4-M9.
Piett

Eternal Padawan
08-25-2002, 11:29 AM
I'm there with you buddy. Hasbro has gone to pot. I don't even look forward to hunting Star Wars toys anymore. I am more interested in the new Marvel lines from Toybiz and maybe starting Masters of the Universe line from Mattel.

Armada holds no interest for me (alhough the Gen1 rerelease has piqued my interest.)
GIJoe is dropping the ball. I got hooked on the new comic (my first and only comic series in over ten years) but I'm just not enthusiastic about buying the toys as well.

And thank goodness they lost the Batman/Superman license. Now maybe we'll get some superior DC figures for a change.

I can't help wonder if...

ROLLO!

bigbarada
08-26-2002, 01:41 PM
The POTF2 line was far from perfect, but I enjoyed collecting back then about ten times more than I do today. Maybe it is the constant resculpting of the same figure over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over......(ahem, sorry got carried away there) that is killing my interest. How many more Tatooine Lukes, Darth Mauls and Jango Fetts must we sit through to get to the cool background aliens that carried the line in the 80s and made the SW toys the legend that they are today?

Sure Hasbro says it's to appease the wishy-washy kiddies, but I don't remember wanting only key characters as a kid. In fact I preferred the anonymous aliens since I could create my own backstories for them. I have trouble believing that kids have changed so much in twenty years that they have become braindead little ignoramuses who can't focus on anything for more than a few minutes and must be constantly reminded of who the main characters are.

Transformers seemed promising for a while there, but once the Japanese toys ran out and Hasbro was left to it's own devices, there was a measurable drop in quality.

I won't even get into the new GI Joes. What a disappointment and a travesty that the vintage line will be forever tarnished because of this ill-thought-out and substandard update.

RooJay
08-26-2002, 06:13 PM
Amen.

...to everthing that's been said here. Great things can still come of this line, and in spite of recent and past failures, Star Wars can still be a powerful toy license, but Hasbro...you have to want it. I'm hearing of more and more fans who are becoming disenchanted with Star Wars toys everyday, but it doesn't have to be this way. These people just need something to get them excited again. They just need what we've all been begging for in this line all along, and I know we can be a picky lot, but when you get right down to the heart of the matter, we don't really ask much. Just quality, variety, and respect.
Listen to the fans, Hasbro. Listen to the collectors; we're the ones who've made Star Wars the licensing cash cow it is. If you'd only bring the line back to what it once was, what it should've always been...you'll find that it's easy to make new fans, new collectors.

JediTricks
08-27-2002, 05:20 AM
I haven't responded to a Dear Hasbro thread in months, but this one caught my interest.

This is all as I understand and/or see it:

In the '70s and early '80s, Kenner had no affiliation with Hasbro at all and made a great line. Hasbro saw how well Kenner did with 4" Star Wars figures and scale vehicles and said "me too" to the popular size with their in-house popular license GI Joe, thus GI Joe: A Real American Hero was born. Also, Hasbro saw how well Takara was doing in Japan with their transforming toys in 2 different lines and created the US version from those toys. When the FCC removed the ban keeping cartoons from being little more than 30-minute commercials for toys, Mattel created He-Man and the Masters of the Universe which used this new ability to advertise to kids via cartoons and made a huge profit. Hasbro saw this and made the same leap with their lines to great success.

However, all good things came to an end in the late '80s/early '90s. In the early '90s, Hasbro bought Tonka, who had years earlier bought Kenner, thus giving Hasbro a new toy design division for boys toys, Kenner division in Cincinatti. Kenner division was handed the nearly-dead Transformers line and created the sleeper-hit line "Beast Wars".

Kenner division did the restart of Star Wars 4" figures in '95 before they lost the license, and Hasbro's "Hasbro Direct" division did the SW 12" figures -- there were obvious differences between the way the 2 lines were handled. There was love for the 4" line and it succeeded very well (obviously ;)), yet the 12" line was treated like the proverbial red-headed step-child and didn't do the business it could have.

Flash forward to the late '90s, Hasbro got a new license with LFL and has started taking more control of the Star Wars 4" line and the line appears to suffer from this, mostly in the little things (oh, and of course, "shipping"). Meanwhile, one of Hasbro's major competition, Galoob, was doing well with their Star Wars Micro Machines and Action Fleet. Hasbro saw this and bought Galoob, turning it into the San Francisco division, who designed/managed toys along with Cincinatti division (Kenner division) and Rhode Island division (Hasbro HQ). After the less-than-stellar showing with Episode I, Hasbro was starting on what we now as POTJ and gave half the design work to San Francisco. As the former-Galoob folks did more of the SW figures, the fans started saying how great the line was becoming.

Then Hasbro decided they were losing too much money (since they were now a big, bloated corporation that simply ate other companies and ideas for breakfast rather than concentrating on making good toys that kids and collectors might really like) and quickly closed San Francisco and Cincinatti divisions, calling some of the designers back to Rhode Island but losing some talent too. Now we have the Saga line of figures which has the lowest collector approval rate I've seen since '95 designed by Rhode Island; we have Transformers: Armada, which has possibly the least amount of quality toy value in a TF line ever; and a GI Joe line that started somewhat strong but petered out into what appears to be a huge mess every time I visit Wal*Mart or Target with the weaker articulation, instant repaints, the vintage rehashes, the cheap accessories, and the unpopular vehicles. Hasbro also singlehandedly destroyed the Batman and Superman licenses around this time, a tragedy to be sure.


What does this tell me? I'm afraid Hasbro doesn't know how to get a good toy to kids and collectors anymore. In becoming a large megacorporation, they've lost the heart of toymaking... lost in an endless sea of bad ideas such as "no figures in the Action Fleet". The only way they could do good SW figures in the past 3 years was to buy a different company and bring them in to boost the quality. I am concerned that the #2 toymaker no longer knows how to make good toys, only gimmicky junk that hooks buyers in via movies and TV and gets them to buy based on the weakest of reasons in a plan to get the buyer to take the item home then toss it away in boredom not long after. They wait until the kid market all but disappears and then sacrifices the collector market in a vein, half-hearted attempt to bring the kids back.

RooJay
08-28-2002, 09:46 PM
That's all as I understand it too. Hopefully someone in charge at Hasbro sees this and feels very, very ashamed of themselves. Yeah, RIGHT!

bandontherun
08-29-2002, 09:15 PM
Originally posted by bigbarada
The POTF2 line was far from perfect

I definitely agree. I can rarely name a single figure that doesn't have a flaw to the movie's version of the character. The early males were too muscular, the woman's faces were too masculine, and the plastic on C-3PO is very cheap and chips easily. While the line got better later on, it certainly doesn't come close to perfection.

TylerD
08-30-2002, 06:11 PM
At least we can look forward to the "non-movie" years when Hasbro does stuff for the collectors...The last figures of the POTJ line were awesome....I can't wait for the hype of EPII to be over. Then Hasbro will make high quality figures like that of FX-7, Ketwol etc....

bigbarada
08-31-2002, 03:01 AM
Hopefully, the SW line will be able to recover from this Saga fiasco. If things continue the way they are going, I don't foresee the line continuing past 2003, and only a token assortment for Ep3.

But, maybe the line needs to fail. Hasbro seems to have lost focus and is just blindly throwing crap against the wall to see what'll stick. Maybe after Hasbro's toy line flops and is cancelled, the liscense can once again go to a small, relatively unknown toy company (like Kenner was in 1977) and the quality will return.

Obi-Don
08-31-2002, 03:20 AM
There is not to much I can add here. I agree with all that has been said. It is a shame that with the prices of the figures being so low that still a lot of people pass on the figures because they just don't look as good as they could. That has to say something. I bought more when the prices were higher because the quality was better. Now I have to pass on some even when the price is $3.00 on some because I just don't like them. Hasbro needs to wake up and soon.

mylow thehutt
08-31-2002, 09:09 PM
The only complant I have is that 5 years past and we still don't see limb or hair of new figs,if i go to another store and see dexter Jettster or Zam Wessels on the pegs with no Teemto or mundi I'm going to flip.Hay why don'y don't you E-Maile hasbro see what they say :rolleyes:

Jedi Master Silas
09-05-2002, 12:14 AM
First I agree about the new GI Joes YUCKOLA! Tacky as hell-o I liked the original scultps and vehicles they reissued over the past few years. On the Star Wars figs.....I like the figs for the most part. I think Hasbro needs to come up with more creative ideas on NEW never before seen figures not the same figs in different poses. Also I dont like the poses of some of the newer figs. POint being? You cant play with them :) ALSO AGAIN!!! LOL Take a look at the new 12" GI Joes compared to other companies like Ultimate Soldiers, 21st Century, and Blue Box. The prices may be slightly higher but the quality is AWESOME! Now if you want a cheaper 12 " figure the brand new sculpts of the Soldiers of The World are way cool!!! At Under $8 a figure how in the world can you go wrong!