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JediTricks
01-03-2002, 02:30 AM
http://www.figures.com/Features/index.html?show_article=28717&dom=ss

Unbelievable that this is the 3rd one I've been a part of, but SSG's best of 2001 Hasbro Toys is now up. This is the SSG staff's round-table discussion on the past year of toys, and while it feels like a lonnnnnnnnnng year has gone by, it doesn't seem (to me anyway) like we got a lot of product out of it. But we each have our opinions and would love to know which ones you folks agree with and which ones honked you off, so post below and share your thoughts! HAPPY 2002!!!

ChronicJedi
01-03-2002, 03:50 AM
To be honest, nothing really stood out in the year end review that made me stop to think EXCEPT this little tidbit offered by SirSteve himself; "I am not sure how everyone will respond to the new figures for E2 as Hasbro has taken a different route. You will see soon... "

This frightens me...

If this is the same route they took with Eeth Koth I will not be a happy camper. There is just something about one pose figures that doesn't sit (or stand) right for me. Or your scene specific figures a la Tat Jar Jar. Play value = 0. Oh, don't get me wrong I'm sure kids love reenacting the Watto's Shop scene over and over.

I remember the last time Hasbro took a different route, trying to compete with the more muscular super hero toys with their "buff" POTF2 figures. Crash and burn. Why take a step in a totally different direction now, when they were (in many ways) already on the right path with POTJ. If something works well why change the formula? When will they learn that WE the collectors should be the main focus of their efforts be it a movie year or not. After all we are their bread and butter when it comes to selling toys that have "Star Wars" on the package. You'd think they would have learned by now. Sure, little Jimmy will get his Obi-Wan with "saber-slashing action" etc. but will he be spending THOUSANDS of dollars on toys this year? Duh.

GNT
01-03-2002, 06:37 AM
I agree with Tycho about Tessek being the best figure of the year although your choice of Bespin Guard as the best,well In my opinion I didn't like the arms are the way they were posed and his face was just ugly "Only a mother could like a face like that"

Totally agree with SirSteve about the Mon Calamari (Officer) being the worst,give me some paint and I'll make one up in a few seconds :) and it never did anything for me at all. :sur:

ChronicJedi,his just teasing us :)

Jek Porky 2002
01-03-2002, 08:25 AM
I agree with Sir Steve about Amanaman being the best, I wasn't really that fussed about this figure but everything about this figure is perfect!

My worst, however has to be without a doubt Mon Calamari (Officer) there is just something about him that is just so unattractive (from a buying point of view), I'm not certain but is he just a re-paint of the Power Of The Force Admiral Ackbar?

OC47150
01-03-2002, 08:56 AM
Correct me if I'm wrong, but I thought Tessek was one of the last figures created by Kenner, in '84 or '85. I have a copy of all the old figures at home and remember seeing Tessek/Squid Head on that last line with the other hard-to-find figures -- Imperial dignitaries, Han in carbonite, Anakin Skywalker, etc...

Darth Metalmute
01-03-2002, 10:31 AM
I believe the best figure from 2001 was the Boba Fett 300th figure. It was a great sculpt and although its was not very playable, it was a much need resculpt of that muscle-bound monkey from 1997.
The worst figure that they came out with in 2001 was the Chewie at the chess board figure. as a collector this is a decent figure just for the pose but as a fan this sculpt was horrible. No movement, no weapon, just a happy wookie sitting around a chess game. Do not get me wrong the sculpt was done nicely, its just not a playable figure. I was going to say Jar Jar Tatooine but I have had more fun with him than any others justing leaving him around the office sticking his tongue out at co-workers.
I agree completely with the build your own armies packages for stormies snowtroopers, scout troopers, sand troopers, and rebel troopers, but my concern is which figures do they use? I have over thirty of the original stromtroopers released in 1997 and even though the new resculpts of the stormtroopers are realistic, they just do not scare you like the 1997 version. I just do not see Han and Chewy in the Death Star running away from these resculpts like they would from the 1997 ones.
Another thing that I believe they should have is more EU and background figures. I would love to see the Solo kids as well as the Vong and a Karrade figure. Mara Jade is in serious need of a resculpt maybe with the Jade-Skywalker title and a less masculine, more beautiful frame. As for background figures, how about looking through some of Deciphers cards for some ideas. Besides, I cannot wait for a "E.T." figure from the senate or the Jedi N'Sync figures from E2.

Darth Evil
01-03-2002, 11:37 AM
Yeah, I'd say 300th Boba Fett was the best, pity about his lack articulation but a great sculpt.

good shot jansen
01-03-2002, 12:03 PM
no micro machines:cry:

jdmarlow
01-03-2002, 01:04 PM
2001 was certainly one of the most boring years of starwars collecting I have ever experienced. I am a variation collector. So POTJ, for me, was a bit tedious, as well as thrilless. I have not found there to be really any figure(s) or vehicle(s) that have sparked my interest too much. Overall, a little dull for my taste.

A lot of people have been talking about the quality of 2001 in respect to distribution, sculpts, etc. But I think that it is equally worthwhile to talk about the quality of the hunt itself this year. I understand that EPII is right around the corner, but wasn't it this time three years ago that we were going nuts every day up until EPI? I guess that was because it was the first NEW starwars movie released since ROTJ in mid-80's. So what does that mean for EPISODE 2? Are we going through the motions? Is anything exciting REALLY going to pop up? The experience that I had in 1999 with The Phantom Menace was one that will never be forgotten, despite the quality of the film itself. From The Celebration in Denver, to May 3rd MIDNIGHT MADNESS, to standing on line May 21st at midnight. There was nothing else like that experience. However, now that we have all done that, are we less excited for Attack of the Clones this time around? I know that Hasbro has changed their ways with the release of EPII toys as Sirsteve pointed out in his article. I certainly hope the flame that once gave birth for my love of STARWARS is re-ignited within the coming months.

2001, between a work-a-day life and the monogomous release of figures from Hasbro, I felt like I was simply going through the motions. I know this is only the calm before the storm, though. I know things will pick up. I know that starwars will once again capture the world's interest in May. It's gonna be great!

-JD

OC47150
01-03-2002, 01:41 PM
2001 was a year of highs and lows. For some of us, like myself, we finally got our hands on hard-to-find figures like R2 holo, and other figures like Aurra Sing and the biker scout remained elusive for months. Then there's the abundance of clearance items but that's another story completely.

I've mentioned this before but I think the problem has more to do with distribution than production. The figures are getting made but not released to all stores. For example, Aurra Sing came out in late 2000 or early 2001; I didn't see her in the stores until July 2001. The same goes with the biker scout. My friends and I never say the R2-B1 or TC-14 in stores in our area; I hear second-hand information that they were but we never saw them ourselves.

The stores in my area have been hit and miss since mid-summer. KMart has come on strong since summer by carrying the latest figures. There are eight Targets in my area, and four of them discontinued carrying SW until just a few weeks before Christmas and then it's an older wave of figures. I'm hoping as warehouses get cleaned out more of the older figures will show up.

I don't know about other fans, but I still get a kick out of hunting for figures on Saturday mornings.

bosskmr
01-03-2002, 03:13 PM
Thank you Thrawn and Jeditricks your right on the money..........................where the heck are the playsets!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

400 + figures and NO playsets

When the hell will hasbro learn

Jek Porky 2002
01-03-2002, 03:30 PM
Bobba Fett 300 was out in 2000

AmanaMatt
01-03-2002, 03:36 PM
Sir Steve is obviously a person of refined tastes.... (no, this is not an blank-kissing post, never met any of the fine people who run this site)


Amanaman rocked hard, as did Tessek, B. Guard, and Dagobah Vader.

Flembar
01-03-2002, 06:14 PM
I am conflicted about 2001... sculpt detail is better than ever.... but the lack of play value hurts big-time.

Best figure? The sculpt on Deluxe Darth Maul blew my mind... but the figures need to move more. Still... I was a little surpirsed by the criticism of this figure. Also, I saw the prototype Deluxe Leai at Wizard World and really liked it. Still havent found the real thing yet. I also liked the Rebel Trooper and Imperial officer big-time.

Worst? Easy. Deluxe Luke Bacta. I just cant understand the interest in this thing. It just sits there. Bleh!! Boring!! Also, it bugs me that whereas POTF2 started off with 2 weapons per figure a lot of figures now have none! I like having back-ups for the inevitable lost weapons. Finally, I will miss the force files big-time.

I loved the TIE interceptor--loved even more that I found it at TRU and didnt have to pay an additional $20 an online reseller.

Best personal collecting moment this year? Being the first customer to find a newly-dropped-off box of 200 loose POTF2, POTJ, and Ep1 figures with weapons at a used toy shop--including several Dark Troopers (tres cheap too--about $2 per figure, even for the Dark Troopers)! That was cool.

Looking forward to that TIE bomber big-time. Love the idea floated around about army builder sets. Id buy that for a dollar (or more)! And give us a Shuttle!

Peace out.

stillakid
01-03-2002, 10:20 PM
The release dates have never jived with "when" I actually get to hold a figure in my hands so I can't accurately comment on year 2001 figures. On the whole, though, I'm just glad that Hasbro is still making them. I have a squadron of all the different types of Stormtroopers guarding my computer with the newest Biker Scout, Sand Trooper and Comm Tech Trooper at the front of the line. They all just look so great. I can't say that I've been "unhappy" about any figure in particular, just not as excited about some as others (Tatooine Jar Jar for instance).

Playsets and vehicles are the big issue I think. Not enough of either. The ships have looked great. Aside from the lack of electronics, they've looked pretty nice. Playsets are another matter entirely. The ones they've put out thus far have been rather lame attempts. From the simple Death Star corridors to the Endor blast door, to the flimsy Naboo hangar bay, none have had a WOW factor like the vintage Death Star or Millenium Falcon. As some of you might remember, I offered up my design for a new Death Star that would rock the toy world, but it'll never be...simply because it's too ambitious.

In any case, I look forward to another year of collecting, but I'm gonna have to find more room to put it all. :happy:

snakeplkn
01-04-2002, 12:00 AM
Best figure has to go to Dagobah Vader, definitely a figure I've been waiting for a long time. It's the best Darth Vader since removable helmet, the removable head and facemask easily bring it to the top. Runner-up is controversial, Snowbi-Wan. The boots, the helmet, the backpack all very well done, just a solid figure with no faults for me. Honorable mentions to Amanaman and Luke Bata Tank.

The worst has to be tongue-lashing Jar Jar. Why did I waste my money on this? Maybe at the time, he was on the only one on the peg with no R2-Q5 in sight and I felt obligated to buy it. Runner-up is Deluxe Darth Maul, refuse to buy whatsoever. Honorable mentions to pack-in TIE Interceptor Pilot and B-Wing pilot.

Thrawn is absolutely right, where are the playsets? Definitely the Blockade Runner corridor needs to come out to reenact the initial scene between Stormtroopers and Rebel Fleet Troopers.

Snake Plissken
"A little human compassion"

Jayspawn
01-04-2002, 01:39 AM
2001 has 3 great figures with me, along awith a few runner's up. The best for me was:

300th Boba Fett
Tessek and
Amanaman.

Beautiful figures. 2002 is gonna be GREAT!!!

jedibear
01-04-2002, 02:54 AM
I'm just sad to see the major vibe from our stalwart editors here is so negative...ah, well. Much of what you guys said is on the mark....from a certain point of view.

Anyway...here's mine....

General Comments...

I had the pleasure of going to San Diego this year and listening to the Hasbro team talk about how this year (2001) would be more collector-focused and distribution would be better & blah, blah. blah. For the most part, this was true. We saw figures of alot of secondary or background characters that the average consumer couldn't care less about, but diorama builders and completists were thrilled to see. Now for just how many of us there are out there, it's hard to say...considering how many Ketwols are still falling off the pegs in my neck of the woods, it's gotta make the retailers (& Hasbro) wonder....but as someone else pointed out, the easier availibility (in general) of figures and the sagging pegs of background characters could be from falling interest in the line in an off-movie year. We'll see as AOTC descends upon us....
And as SirSteve so cryptically pointed out about Hasbro's change in direction for the AOTC line....I have to wonder if that's as much of Hasbro following trends (e.g.: the movie-scene specific actions/poses of figures like ToyBiz's well-recieved LOTR line) or making them as they did all those years ago....again, we'll see come May...

Back to last year...here's my shot at the catagories...

Best 3/4" Figure 2001:

Deluxe Darth Maul

I know JT is cringing, but...this was one figure I was really looking forward to, and for me, it didn't disappoint. From the dynamic pose to the great detailing on the upper torso (at least on the one I got) this final version of the vanquished Sith Lord was cool. It was also like getting an EU figure for comics fans (like me). The only thing I could have lived without is the loopy droid he comes with, but that's easy enough to ignore....

Runner-up: Amanaman....this figure, while a rehash of one from the original line, shows how far Hasbro has come in detailing & sculpting...when done well, they really shine.

Worst 3/4" figure 2001:

All the obvious rehashed figures from previous releases....
You know them all...the Mon Calamari Officer (great idea, couldn't we scrap together a different pose at least?) The TC-14, er, K-3PO...etc, etc...
I know Hasbro wanted to keep product coming, but a little more imagination with the blatant re-use of older molds would've been nice...

Best 12" Figure 2001:

Luke Skywalker & Yoda

Yes, this also had some recycled elements to it (most notably that unposable body Hasbro refuses to retire) but sometimes presentation can make up alot of ground and in a year that saw very little activity in the Action Collection, this set was a good effort in my book.

Worst 12" figure 2001:

In general, the LACK of figures was the worst in 2001 as many have already pointed out, but for figures...

Luke Skywalker in Endor Gear with Speeder Bike.

This set was painful...from being a Target (arrgghh!!!) exclusive, tonearly everything in it being recycled (with the lone exceptions of the very un-Hamill looking head sculpt, helmet & poncho) this would have gone down better if they had just boxed the figure alone and kept it cheap. Hint, hint, Hasbro....give us a boxed LeiaEndor in 2002...only make her able to ride the bike...please!

Best/Worst Vehicles 2001:

Since there were only two this year, I'll give the edge to the B-Wing. Great presentation and good job on the detailing. Nix the rehash figure, though.
As for the TIE Interceptor...I agree with JT...can we lose the lame old-style cokpit for a more movie-accurate one please? And I loved the irony of providing a pilot with bendy knees that were'nt needed for the cockpit in it's old configuration...ah, well...the thought was there...

Biggest disappointments:

After seeing them at ComicCon, it was sad to see the TIE Bomber and re-issued Snow Speeder bumped to this year, but hey....they were'nt cancelled (at least not yet).
The Super-deformed line....sorry Hasbro but not all ideas that work across the ocean necessarily translate well here...oh, well.

Finally....Wishes for 2002...

Here's hoping for more Action Collection figures this year, and not just from AOTC (although those well definately be welcomed.

NO MORE store exclusives (but alas, since that is sometimes the only way we'll see certain things, I guess they're a necessary evil) If we gotta have 'em, just keep 'em easily availible for everyone and reasonably priced!

Please Hasbro...hopefully you and your retail partners learned a few things from Epsiode One....don't overcrowd the marketplace with TOO much stuff...but don't sell us short either. No shortpacking and pay closer attention to what moves and what doesn't. Hopefully in these off years between films, you've learned what works for your collector base and what the larger kid market will bear. Here's hoping....

Also....a big wookiee hug & thanks to the team here at SirSteve's...always an interesting read, guys! Keep up the good work!!

JediTricks
01-04-2002, 05:35 AM
Glad to see all this feedback and these differing opinions. I wouldn't say we're unduly negative, I think we who are frustrated have legitimate reasons, but I'm not trying to change anybody's mind.

I am a bit surprised by those who are so into Maul Deluxe, I mean, even if you WERE into Maul, the figure I got has NOTHING redeeming about the character or action figures in general - it's got those crappy arm joints that fall apart, paint that doesn't match (light red some places, dark red others?!?), it has a shrinky lightsaber, and it's a one-pose wonder. I simply don't see it with that one, and that's not even mentioning the droid.

Yes, Mon Cal officer is a repaint of POTF2 Ackbar, but I personally think it succeeds. I think there is a huge split on tha one in general, a lot of folks secretly like it, but as many as that hate it with a passion.

Chewie Chess and Fett 300 are both 2000 releases, but I know a lot of folks never found Fett until the middle of 2001.

My good friend GSJ echoes my sentiments, Hasbro earns much of my unhappiness over just that, and they aren't all smiles after that either. However, I am not without hope... but perhaps I need A New Hope. (sorry, that was too cheesy ;))

bigbarada
01-04-2002, 11:56 PM
I've always enjoyed these year in review discussions, even when I don't agree with some of the opinions. For instance, SirSteve dissing Artoo w/ Holo Leia a couple years back.:p

My choices:

Best 3 3/4": Amanaman and Ellors Madak (both the fan-choice winners so it gives me high hopes for Ephant Mon.) I also want to say FX-7 and the 25th Han and Chewie two pack; but I don't own either yet.

Worst 3 3/4": Jedi Training Qui-Gonn and Obi-Wan (did anyone actually want these things?)

Best 12": Imperial Trooper (looks funny with the goofy helmet, but awesome with the garrison cap)

Worst 12": Luke and Yoda (horrible paint job on Yoda and throw away GI Joe body for Luke)

Best Vehicle: B-Wing (the lesser of two evils)

Worst Vehicle: TIE Interceptor (I would've picked this one even if twenty vehicles were released this year. I don't mind the rehashed cockpit, but the super soft, easily deformed plastic on the wings has got me thinking twice about the TIE Bomber coming up. Or if they ever release the Shuttle will it's landing gear collapse from under it and it's wings start to droop because of Hasbro's insistence on using soft, gooey plastic?)

Biggest Disappointment: Hasbro's choice of materials (see above comment about soft, gooey plastics) and Eeth Koth's legs possibly being an indication of things to come. :mad:

Most Anticipated for 2002: Ephant Mon and the rumoured Jabba the Hutt.

JediTricks
01-05-2002, 01:07 AM
Interesting choices, and you're right about the materials, I wish that had been on my mind, I would have torn off into a little rant if I had thought about it then.

BTW, Thrawn points out to me that Dagobah Vader was another 2000 figure, one we all praised in last year's "Best Of".

I got a kick out of reading 1998's Best Of, the one before I officially joined the site. It's hard to believe how much has changed since then.

Lord Malakite
01-05-2002, 04:55 PM
Emperor's Wrath Darth Vader should of been on there for several reasons.

1. He is from 2001.

2. He was just as innovative as his Removable Helmet and Dagobah counterparts.

3. Just about everyone I know wanted one, but unlike other figures, no one ever asked for him because they most likely thought it was beyond Hasbro's means to create such a figure. So when he was made, almost everyone was both happy and surprised to see the figure created.

Wolfwood319
01-05-2002, 06:13 PM
All in all, I'm just thankful the line still exists AND we're still getting OT figures.

Best:
Luke w/ Bacta Tank (truly a deluxe figure)
Amanamna
Duro (both fan choice, what we wanted, and superb sculpts)
Tessek

Worst:
Those horrid EU figures based on concept art, why they came out with these I still don't know
Deluxe Maul (its Maul, its EU, and it sucks. 'nuff said)

12'' line was non-existant in 2001 so I'm not going to comment on.

Lack of scalpers made it easy for me to get missing pieces form the POTF2 line, as well as add a large chunk to my vintage line.

Given the current standings, as well as what we've seen for AOTC, my prediction is that 2002 will be the last year for Star Wars figures in general. Expect hardly anything in 2003.

cjranck
01-05-2002, 11:21 PM
"Given the current standings, as well as what we've seen for AOTC, my prediction is that 2002 will be the last year for Star Wars figures in general. Expect hardly anything in 2003."

I'm still new at posting forums, and I meant to quote Wolfwood319 on this.

Holy Schnikees, I hope this isn't true!

Best Fig: Tie with Amanaman and FX-7
Man, are they sweet! The articulation on FX-7 (especially compared to the vintage version) is awesome! Amanaman....I quit collecting in 1984, so when POTF came out I foolishly didn't buy any of them (I was too busy buying GI JOE figs), but he is the bomb.

Worst Fig: I would like to say the entire Luke X-wing wave (Luke, Han, and Emp. Wrath Darth Vader). I have always been so pumped up for any new releases whenever they came out, however this wave was very disappointing. Not that they were bad figs, but that we already had XXX# of them.

Best 12" fig: As a completist, and as a collector of MIMB 12" figs (I know, most of you hate us), I thought that the figs that came out this year were fantastic. Sure, there were not that many of them, however the ones that were produced were great. Personally, I have to like the Luke and Yoda 2 Pack simply because my folks gave it to me for Christmas.

I am very optimistic for the new year after seeing the pics that were posted on the Sirsteve's forum. WOW!

I hope all of us collectors have a fantastic new year, and good luck to everyone finding the figs they need!

Lord Tenebrous
01-06-2002, 12:03 AM
My little list.


Best carded 4-inch: (tie) Tessek and Bespin Security Guard

Worst carded 4-inch: X-Wing Luke


Best Deluxe: Amanaman (although he could have been a standard figure)

Worst Deluxe: Darth Maul (EU)


Best Vehicle: I'm going to be controversial and say Hallmark's Royal Starship. I know it's an ormament, but it's a beautiful representation of the Queen's ship.

Best Trend: More articulation and better sculpts

Worst Trend: unusual or no accessories.

Tycho
01-06-2002, 04:49 AM
JEDI TRICKS - you inspired me to go back and read our 1998 Best Of thread - and overall it made me realize that Star Wars collecting has been good to us! But we still have a long ways to go.

Some things we wanted, we got. Others we got too much of (read Darth Maul), and finally there's plenty of good ideas we have still yet to get (but 12" Max Rebo Band is rumored for 2002 now, and that would make the year for Action Collection collecting seriously cool!)

Thanks for reminding me that was there.