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View Full Version : Just why is everything an 'exclusive' nowadays?



Devo
08-20-2003, 08:12 PM
I've noticed in other threads people lamenting the fact that seemingly all the best items Hasbro is dishing out have a predetermined limited availability and its ****ing me off too. Why are all OT vehicles exclusives? And some people could be forgiven for thinking that every single figure over the past year has been some kind of exclusive due to the fact that stores aren't buying them in.

Just what is behind Hasbro's decisions to limit the amount of people particular items (usually very desireable items) find their way to? Why in god's name is everything an 'exclusive'???

Jargo
08-20-2003, 08:38 PM
Because stores have been stung too many times by the way hasbro stiffs them on orders and stock, refusing to let retailers pick and choose what they know will sell in their stores. Instead hasbro dictates what will be sent and often substitutes what a store thinks they were getting for older pegwarmers and old assortment items. By making exclusives hasbro is saying that otherwise they weren't going to make the item but if they can sell the items to a store exclusively a store will know it can guarantee extra business as people come to their store to get this exclusive and the likelihood of good sales is high. Exept when the promised goods are not what they thought they were getting like the cantina bar sets. again old figures rehashed and nothing new. People weren't overly excited so they bombed and still pegwarm. This sort of thing makes it harder and harder for hasbro to convince stores to take goods. Over here in the UK TRU bought A-wings in from Wal*Mart US. Woolworths also buys from Wal*Mart. The whole thing is screwed to hell and not getting any better dispite what hasbro says in cosey little press releases. Every one who wants one will have one my backside! Everyone who happens to live in anaffluent area with a large store that has a high turnover more like. If you live in a small or poor town or a foreign country then forget it. Collect them all? What all? Where all? The only 2003 item I've actually seen instore at TRU UK is the A-wing. Previously the last new item we had was Ephant mon in the fall of last year. That's a whole year almost without any product in the one national toy retailer in this country. 64 stores with no new product. Just endless racks of old old first wave saga figures that no-one wants. Even on clearance sale they can't shift them. Hasbro Uk has proved yet again that they couldn't organise a p up in a brewery. Hasbro US seems to be pretty much the same. The license is until 2018. it'll take that long for us to get this years stock in the stores. If hasbro wanted to kill the line they couldn't have handled things better. blase attitudes to collectors and slimey wheedling sneaky attitudes towards stores. They may as well just make the stuff they've announced and call it a day. I can't see much point in beating a dead horse. Yeah the sculpts on the new stuff looks good, but what's the point if no-one actually finds them? What's the point if all this stuff just stockpiles in warehouses?
It's easier just to walk away and collect something else that does come through and find it's way to stores all over the country. Stuff that's bigger and costs less.

TheDarthVader
08-20-2003, 11:37 PM
Good points Jargo. Lets see...let us take unleashed for example:

Wal-Mart- does not carry them anymore
Target- never carried them
KB- does not carry them anymore
TRU- carries them
K-Mart- does not carry them

Okay...what is going on here? It is like, basically, all of the unleashed figures will now be TRU exclusives.

jedi master sal
08-21-2003, 03:25 PM
It isn't all Hasbro, it's also the retailers as well. jargo you did elude to this but let me attmpt to further elaborate this point.

Big retail chains like, Wal*Mart, Target, TRU, KB's and K-Mart have indeed been burned with overstock and therefore do not order much in the way of new stock. This is in part due to the corporate greed of the retailers who scramble to purchase high in movie years, then when they've yet again found that they've overstocked it's too late. The notion of exclusives is to get the retailers to buy not only the exclusive which they KNOW will sell but continue buying more SW toys in general, knowing that many people, not just collectors but the casual fan and kids will buy the occasional extra figure as well since they are already at that store. Likewise, with regards to us collectors they know that some are frustrated by not finding new product and will succumb to getting our "fix" (like it's a drug or something) by purchasing a toy they hadn't planned on buying.

The exclusive however doesn't just bring people in for that toy alone. Here's an example. "Carl the collector" walks into the store to buy only the exclusive "Panty Raid Luke with beer Keg", now he doesn't find it but knows he needs toilet paper, clothes detergent and a card for his mother. So, since he doesn't have to go to another store because they don't have his precious exclusive, he just buys the other stuff at the store he's already at. The store just gained business from that collector that wasn't the original intention.

Here's another scenario:

"Carl the collector", walks into the store to buy the exclusive "Chewie college buddy, with special herb Hooka", he finds it and walks out of the store with nothing else. Hey, at least the store gained some business and chances are Carl will tell others of his find.

Here's my last scenario:

"Carl the collector", walks into the store to buy the exclusive "Darth Maul, kindergarten bully", he finds it and also thinks, "Hey, while I'm here I can get the other Clonetrooper Pilot I've been stalling on getting.", "While, I'm at it I better buy an extra pack of protection (since I used the last box as water balloons), and maybe that toenail clipper, ooh yeah and the room de-odorizer, for that funky smell mom keeps complaining about coming from my room. Now the store has not only scored on the exclusive, but he bought another unintended figure as well as some other products.

The stores don't care all that much about what or how much you buy (well they do to a point). They just want to get you in the door. And getting an exclusive will do just that. I know myself that normally I wouldn't shop in a Target or even K-mart anymore, but with the exclusives, I do and from time to time, purchase other items as well. This gets people thinking about what else the store may have to offer and lo and behold, there's that room divider they've been wanting, or that special wall clock and so on.

I hope you all see the point that, while we collectors hate the idea of exclusives, because it means we have to drag our "collective" butts (pun fully intended) around to find the exclusives, the stores and eventually the communities we live in benefit from this. It's good business for the stores, becasue they have a guaranteed amount of foot traffic. Also it benefits where you live because a businees will stay in that area if they are doing well, as well, your local/state/federal government benefits because of the tax revenue the store generates. (Some of which coming from those pesky exclusives) and also keeps jobs in that area which help the local economy.

So, I'll go on the record as saying that I don't like having to go around hunting down exclusives, but understand the idea of why and what it does for business as well as the economy.

Okay nuff said by me, your thoughts fellows?

[EDIT] Iwanted to add that in no way am I trying to imply that a stores success hinges soley on that of the SW toy line or it's exclusivity, but it helps to contribute to such. Take into account that it's not just toys that have exclusives. Example: K-Mart has the Martha Stewart collection. This is just one example, or even the local comic stores, they have exclusives to just them (like Simpsons figures for one), insuring them business as well in the competitive toy market. Think bigger picture here fellas and you'll see that for retailers and manufactuers it is about business.[End EDIT]

icatch9
08-21-2003, 03:55 PM
Good points Jargo. Lets see...let us take unleashed for example:

Wal-Mart- does not carry them anymore
Target- never carried them
KB- does not carry them anymore
TRU- carries them
K-Mart- does not carry them

Okay...what is going on here? It is like, basically, all of the unleashed figures will now be TRU exclusives.

You make a good point. Unleashed figs are getting impossible to find. Although Target did carry them. They had tons of Jango and Maul last Xmas. I got some for as little as $3 when the cleared them out.

I don't want to open a can of worms, but it's funny that Unleashed are hard to find partly becasue stores don't carry them probally becasue they are a slow sell (on average, not every fig). What's worse is this line is geared toward adult collectors (the nips on Padme proove that :eek: ). So, a line soley made for adults doesn't get carried by stores and is impossible to find and probally isn't that big of a money make for Hasbro. Funny how collectors still think they carry the Star Wars line isn't it?

jedi master sal
08-21-2003, 04:17 PM
I don't want to open a can of worms, but it's funny that Unleashed are hard to find partly because stores don't carry them probably because they are a slow sell (on average, not every fig).

They are slow because, again, stores bought higher amounts in an attempt to get a better price from the manufacturer (bulk rate pricing) and to be sure they had stock for consumers. This line should have never been overstocked because it IS geared towards a more mature audience, but also, this line was never going to have the amount of chararcters that the 3 3/4 in line does and unfortunately that's an unrealistic goal that many collectors thought might happen. So stores should have bought less, and maybe more characters could have been produced, but without consumer support it was doomed from the begining. Yes, we support the line but with the limited amount of figures to choose from we either loose interest or have bought up all of the currently available characters and these are not something you neccessarily want to have multiples of. So it's in part everyone's fault. Hasbro, for not making more characters, retailers for ordering too much AGAIN and consumers for the unrealistic goal of having a lot to choose from. Think of how big your collections are with just the 3 3/4 figures, 12inch, vehicles, etc. Now think of how much space that would take up in your homes if they made every character as an Unleashed. Do you really have room for this as well as the average $15 a piece for each one. (That's a rhetorical question)

Until we all come to a happy medium with what is expected of the manufacturer to supply retailers for consumer demand, retailers for ordering in more appropriate numbers so as to not overstock and then eventually loose money, and consumers for putting an unreasonable goal for the manufacturer to achieve, then we'll all are never going to be happy. That means that we stop buying, stores stop ordering and Hasbro stops producing. Do we really want that? (Again, rhetorical question)

I guess what this boils down to is, stop complaining and be glad for what we have. Is it sub par, yes sometimes, but they are not making you buy it. YOU are. It's you decision to buy something or not. I feel for those who don't have the plethora of stores that I do to shop at. But unfortunately your options are to either spend vast amounts of gas trucking it about to other communities to find your toys or ordering online. It's not fair, true, but it is life.

I never once complained as a kid that I couldn't find something. Yes, now it gets tough sometime, but through diligence and dedication to collecting as well as patience, I eventually get everything I've wanted. Yeah, I'd like to be the first "kid" on the block to find new stuff, but it doesn't always happen, so be it.

Okay so back to exclusives (sorry for the bit of a rant there).

Kidhuman
08-21-2003, 04:49 PM
Jargo, you still have Woolworths in the UK? I thought they went out of business?

BTW good points fromallof you guys, and it does irk me that only certain stores will carry the newest exclusive.

Sidiously Darth
08-21-2003, 07:26 PM
Since I live in the Greater Orlando area, one would think that finding stuff would be easy. We have numerous TRUs, WMs, KBs, & still a few K-Marts. Well, let me be the first to say that ain't so. With the small amount of product making it to shelves, it's bought up almost immediately. I've been lucky in a few instances but just a minor few.

One problem is a Toy/Hobby show coming up in a couple of months. There's some lame ***** idiot running around buying everything he can just to sell at that show. I think there will be a linch mob waiting for him when the show starts.

Anyway, I can't imagine what it would be like to live in a country that is getting nothing. Unfortunately, things still aren't that great here.

I'd still like to sucker punch the next person that replys with "I find everything I want." It's just not that way for everyone and you come off as gloating. J/K on the sucker punch but I will stick my tongue out at you. ;)

Devo
08-21-2003, 11:04 PM
This may sound sad and pathetic but this is the biggest response I've ever gotten for a thread that I've started on any forum on any site. I can never get my finger on the pulse issues in the many arenas of which I partake...well-toys. Anyway thanks. I feel better about myself now.

Yep. I think I now have an understanding of the whole 'exclusive' premise. Though I'm not happy with Hasbro's selection of what items they will sell as exclusives. With the OT vehicles I thought I was going great-guns for a long time - I was finding everything. But then along didn't come the TIE bomber,POTJ (Can't remember was that an exclusive?). And I couldn't get the saga rerelease either. Since then it hasn't been good. And one of my single-most desired vehicles, the Tyderium, I may never obtain. Do Hasbro figure that there is greater interest in prequel products amongst the whole toy buying market? Why have we yet to see Episode 1 or 2 vehicles as exclusives? Why specifically limit distribution on OT stuff? As a collector I much prefer to find OT, though granted I am an OT purist. Now this is where you may say-'but thats the point, they need you to go looking for it so the particular store gets your business and it reflects well on Hasbro'. Thing is, and I should have emphasised this already, I'm in Ireland. I live on the east coast where to my knowledge there is only one store that reliably persists with new Star Wars items. Not only that but in non-film years it is the only shop that stocks Star Wars at all. There is no where else within my conceivable reach (I don't drive, and I'm a student living with parents). So for me it is not a matter of going hunting. If its not in Forbidden planet Dublin its not anywhere else. Buying online meanwhile is not something I can readily do. So I just wish that certain items, particularly OT vehicles, weren't cast as exclusives to a given US store, that they were available in as great a profusion as movie-year vehicles, and that I might therefore be paying less aswell. Unfortunately it seems that US problems with the Star wars line filter down to the rest of the world in some way or another. To be expected one supposes.

Well thats my predicament. I'm going on about it like its causing grievious harm to my life. Its not but y'know.

tagmac
08-21-2003, 11:32 PM
The worst part is, going back to '97, "exclusive" really meant "limited to almost nothing." Remember the Stormtrooper Han/Luke, Wampa/Luke, Han/Tauntaun, Desert Skiff, and all those other items that only shipped in one case of 6 per store??!! Ever since then, scalpers hear exclusive and think "rare, moneymaker," and then we can't find them. I've been on the Spawn boards, and this is currently happening with the Patrick Roy figure from their NHL line. It was listed as being exclusive to Wal Mart, and scalpers are walking out with cartfuls of them for that very reason. So even when exclusive can be plentiful, it isn't because scalpers are getting the majority of them to make a quick buck. There are only two solutions to this problem - either end the exclusives, or make them all plentiful but limited to purchase by phone or online. Once you don't have to actually go to the store to buy them, it becomes tougher for scalpers to justify walking out with every exclusive, when the average COLLECTOR can order one or two for himself/herself with no hassle.

kool-aid killer
08-22-2003, 09:33 AM
I feel for you Devo. Its hard being a collector but not being able to drive around to look for what you want. And only having one store that consistently stocks isnt cool either. I cant buy online either. I dont have a credit card and have no desire to get one. If i were to ever buy online (i may have to in order to get that Target A-wing) i would have to convince my mom to let me use hers. (thankfully she supports my habit so it wouldnt be too hard) Stay strong.

Devo
08-22-2003, 08:58 PM
I dont have a credit card and have no desire to get one. If i were to ever buy online (i may have to in order to get that Target A-wing) i would have to convince my mom to let me use hers

kool-aid killer


Thats exactly the problem I have. And yes she supports my habit as well (she's directly financed a fair bit) and I probably wouldn't have trouble persuading her to let me use her card. But once I started I'd never stop and there'd be something new every few months that I couldn't find in the shops...sorry thats 'shop'. But the imperial shuttle though...i'd very much like to get it. If it gets too bad for me then I'll give it a go, see if I can use her card. Thanks for the words.

Val Da Car
08-22-2003, 10:40 PM
Actually Target online supports purchases with Gift Cards.....and it works!!!

I bought mine that way and it was no problemo...

Kidhuman
08-22-2003, 11:06 PM
kool-aid killer


Thats exactly the problem I have. And yes she supports my habit as well (she's directly financed a fair bit) and I probably wouldn't have trouble persuading her to let me use her card. But once I started I'd never stop and there'd be something new every few months that I couldn't find in the shops...sorry thats 'shop'. But the imperial shuttle though...i'd very much like to get it. If it gets too bad for me then I'll give it a go, see if I can use her card. Thanks for the words.


I had the same problem. I didnt have a credit card or anything. What I would do is give them the money on the spot if you have it. This way you are paying for it but using their card. They get the money, you get the merch, and all is happy

kool-aid killer
08-23-2003, 03:43 PM
Kidhuman, that is probably the best way to go about it. I havent sprung for the Imperial Shuttle yet because i wonder if its price once on ebay for a while will fall much like the Fambaa's did.

Val de Car, i might try the gift card thing. Right now im stuck on what to get (so many things, so little money) but i should act quickly before they disappear.

Old Fossil
08-23-2003, 03:57 PM
Well, we could all take Jargo's hint, and focus on LotR figures! :crazed:

At least the ones on the pegs at my WM haven't been there fourteen months, like most of the SW figures.

Foolish retailers, corporate fools at Hasbro, scalpers, overpriced and impossible-to-find exclusives, poor quality toys... is it any wonder Star Wars collecting ain't so much fun anymore?

odb
08-23-2003, 04:25 PM
I've always figured the whole exculsive thing is an attempt to remove the risk element of carrying an item. They see it being all down to supply and demand, if only one store has an item then people will go out of their way to buy it and maybe pay more. Logically therefore you will sell more than an item that everyone is selling. Which is all well and good until you realise that Hasbro messes up the distribution and the perceived demand. Who the hell wants five versions of the same figure or for that matter five copies of Anakin Outland peasant disguise. It plays straight into the scaplers market and gives Hasbro a bad rep.

Plus combine that with greed, must make as money much as possible off everything then you this situation. I still can't believe that Hasbro keeps making certain items US store exculsives, then not release them internationally. Talk about ingoring potential markets. Its not as if fans and collectors don't talk to each other, its as if they are trying to P*** people off. I argee with you Jargo, Hasbro UK couldn't find their Arse with both hands.

Perphaps allowing retailers more independence would help, since their the ones on the front line, or maybe its them?

Val Da Car
08-23-2003, 04:52 PM
btw....Kbtoys.com takes a 20% off coupon that is good thru the end of the month.....

SURVEYTHANKS is the code and $20 off the shuttle makes is almost reasonable....

$99 - $20 = $79 + frieght&tax totals about $95 shipped......

well worth it in my opinion

kool-aid killer
08-29-2003, 08:09 AM
Val Da Car, how do you use the passcode? I went to the site, put the shuttle in my cart, then on a screen a button came up for passcodes, i put SurveyThanks in but it took me back to my cart and nothing had changed on its price. Any idea where i went wrong?

Val Da Car
08-29-2003, 11:29 AM
the discount does not show up until you are about to finalize your order down with the tax/freight combo....

The discount is right above it.

kool-aid killer
08-31-2003, 11:21 AM
I just ordered my Imperial shuttle (with the help of my mothers credit card) and cant wait to get it. The password came up as invalid whenever i tried it but oh well, its only costing me $117. Thanks for the help Val de Car and Devo, i hope your able to get one too.

Val Da Car
08-31-2003, 11:41 AM
Yea the coupon expired on August 30 but think about this....the ppl that ordered it from FAO has to pay $120 before freight.....

btw did you have to pay tax?

kool-aid killer
08-31-2003, 12:10 PM
I did have to pay tax. I believe it was between seven and nine dollars though.