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View Full Version : The Militaries of Star Wars: a proposal for Hasbro



Tycho
05-04-2007, 05:40 AM
The distribution problem is in their case assortments. Even HasbroToyShop.com has set production numbers and receives the cases as they are packed for any other retailer here in the US.

With TAC Wave 2 for example, how many Hans & Lukes (and eventually Biggs) should any retailer be stuck with and pay for storage for while we army build the DST and RHG, and get at least 2 Fetts per individual? HTS's stock storage will look the same as Wal-Mart's warming pegs.


See, there's not really a lot of demand for this stuff. We're in our own little world on these SW fan sites. The major retailers have probaly thousands of customers every day. There are at best 20 regulars that at some point scour their toy isle in your local store on a daily basis. Believe me, Target and Wal-Mart can live without us shopping there. Furthermore, even a specialty toy store like TRU has hundreds of customers, and maybe only 20-30 per day (maximum) that are specifically adults looking for Star Wars (for collecting or scalping them). Finally, HasbroToyShop sells ParkerBrothers board games to people online shopping for birthdays. Their business model wouldn't be profitable either if it were just kept open to increase the convenience of Star Wars collectors.

I'm afraid it doesn't work in our favor.

Therefore I am proposing the Militaries of Star Wars case / collection assortments (borrowing the collection name from SideShow). It is the only way I see even HasbroToyShop being improved. They could keep their "armor and officers" in production and maintain a re-ordering practice for them regardless of worries over stockpiling Lushros Dofine or Biggs or Luke. To help the retailers, a different card SIZE and style is the only way to go so "Heroes and Villains" or "Greatest Battles" don't clog the pegs with the military end-stop stock labels.

Right now, Target is pretty efficient with 4 racks of Saga and 2 racks of TAC. (Most of us would like that reversed, but it will be in June). In any event, employees who know nothing about Star Wars can see the TAC and Saga2 are different products. But Saga2 and GB or H&V all look pretty much the same even to us. Yet that strangely cut TAC card with a coin in it stands out, huh? So would a extra larger or extra smaller MoSW card on which basically ships troop builders. If they're going to supply a lot, and these figures are going to be opened, smaller cards would help them stock a lot. They could be in packages as narrow as the Titanium ships even. For carded collectors, the same figure could ship on a TAC card, but if you're an army builder and your MoSW figures are in stock and an obvious alternative, you could just leave the TAC carded versions of the troops alone. What do you need the card for when you can buy your whole army on the peg next to it.

JediTricks offered the only reasonable (but not actually reasonable) objection to my proposal - that the retailers don't want to handle so many skus. Well handling them would make them more money. Isn't that what they are in business for? As to HTS - it's their product! They should do whatever it takes to support it.

Finally, if this solution was ever implimented, it's almost 12 years late. (I don't think that in 1995 they foresaw as many adults army building as they wound up with - especially by 1997, but the lessons could have been learned then).

In 1997 we had:

Stormtroopers
TIE Pilots
Luke as SOTE Coruscant Guard (army built as grunt)
Sandtroopers
Death Star Gunners
Tusken Raiders
Jawa 2-packs
AT-ST Drivers
Hoth Rebel Soliders
Rebel Fleet Troopers
Snowtroopers
Gamorrean Guards

That's 12 figures right there (a standard case) that could have actually been done:



1997 REV 1
2 x Stormtroopers
1 x TIE Pilots
1 x Luke as SOTE Coruscant Guard (army built as grunt)
2 x Sandtroopers
2 x Death Star Gunners
1 x Tusken Raiders
1 x Jawa 2-packs
1 x AT-ST Drivers
1 x Hoth Rebel Soliders
Rebel Fleet Troopers
Snowtroopers
Gamorrean Guards

1997 REV 2
2 x Stormtroopers
1 x TIE Pilots
Luke as SOTE Coruscant Guard (army built as grunt)
1 x Sandtroopers
1 x Death Star Gunners
Tusken Raiders
Jawa 2-packs
1 x AT-ST Drivers
2 x Hoth Rebel Soliders
2 x Rebel Fleet Troopers
2 x Snowtroopers
Gamorrean Guards

1997 REV 3
1 x Stormtroopers
1 x TIE Pilots
Luke as SOTE Coruscant Guard (army built as grunt)
Sandtroopers
Death Star Gunners
Tusken Raiders
1 x Jawa 2-packs
1 x AT-ST Drivers
2 x Hoth Rebel Soliders
2 x Rebel Fleet Troopers
2 x Snowtroopers
2x Gamorrean Guards

and so forth. The stormtroopers would likely be kept in circulation until 1999 when the CommTech would replace him or a stock pile-up might occur (who could see that though?)

The TIE Pilot would ship as long as TIE fighter vehicles were shipping. That'd make sense. That is also why I kept the AT-ST Driver in circulation.

The Sandtrooper's rank (paint job) could be changed and he returned to circulation periodically, up until 2001 when he saw his POTJ update.

Luke Coruscant (SOTE) might get a Lando version update, and be reintegrated at some point.

The Death Star Gunner, Tusken Raider, etc. The Hoth Rebel might see a non-goatee version (like the head sculpt from the Deluxe figure) enter the assortment as a running change. The last 3 (Snow, Gamorrean, Rebel Fleet Trooper might be scaled back as the 1998 and 1999 Militaries of Star Wars lines adjusted:


1998
1 x Stormtroopers
TIE Pilots
Luke as SOTE Coruscant Guard (army built as grunt)
Sandtroopers
Death Star Gunners
1 x Tusken Raiders (Bantha was released this year)
Jawa 2-packs
AT-ST Drivers
1x Hoth Rebel Soliders (Deluxe Figure head, no goatee)
1 x Rebel Fleet Troopers
1 x Snowtroopers
1 x Gamorrean Guards
2 x Endor Rebel Soldiers
2 x Ugnaught 2-packs
2 x Death Star Trooper

1998 REV 1
1 x Stormtroopers
TIE Pilots
Luke as SOTE Coruscant Guard (army built as grunt)
Sandtroopers
Death Star Gunners
Tusken Raiders
Jawa 2-packs
AT-ST Drivers
1x Hoth Rebel Soliders (Deluxe Figure head, no goatee)
1 x Rebel Fleet Troopers
1 x Snowtroopers
1 x Gamorrean Guards
2 x Endor Rebel Soldiers
1 x Ugnaught 2-packs
2 x Death Star Trooper
2 x Imperial Sentinel (EU)

1998 REV 2
1 x Stormtroopers
TIE Pilots
Luke as SOTE Coruscant Guard (army built as grunt)
1 x Sandtroopers (new rank!)
Death Star Gunners
Tusken Raiders
Jawa 2-packs
AT-ST Drivers
Hoth Rebel Soliders (Deluxe Figure head, no goatee)
1 x Rebel Fleet Troopers
1 x Snowtroopers
x Gamorrean Guards
1 x Endor Rebel Soldiers
Ugnaught 2-packs
2 x Death Star Trooper
1 x Imperial Sentinel (EU)
2 x Space Trooper (EU)
2 x Dark Trooper (EU)

1998 REV 3
1 x Stormtroopers
TIE Pilots
Luke as SOTE Coruscant Guard (army built as grunt)
Sandtroopers
Death Star Gunners
Tusken Raiders
Jawa 2-packs
AT-ST Drivers
Hoth Rebel Soliders (Deluxe Figure head, no goatee)
Rebel Fleet Troopers
1 x Snowtroopers
x Gamorrean Guards
1 x Endor Rebel Soldiers
x Ugnaught 2-packs
2 x Death Star Trooper
1 x Imperial Sentinel (EU)
1 x Space Trooper (EU)
1 x Dark Trooper (EU)
2 x Death Star Droids
2 x AT-AT Drivers

1999
1 x CommTech Jawa / Gonk
2 x CommTech Stormtroopers
1 x Endor Rebel Soldiers
1 x Death Star Trooper
1 x Death Star Droids
1 x AT-AT Drivers
4 x Battle Droids
1 x Destroyer Droids

1999 REV 1
1 x CommTech Jawa / Gonk
2 x CommTech Stormtroopers
4 x Battle Droids
1 x Destroyer Droids
1 x Naboo Royal Security
1 x Naboo Royal Guard
1 x R2-B1
1 x TC-14 (the droids are useful for background filler)

2000
1 x POTJ Tusken Raider
1 x POTJ Coruscant Senate Guard
2 x POTJ Security Droids
2 x POTJ Gungan Warriors
2 x POTJ Imperial Biker Scout
1 x TPM Destroyer Droids
1 x TPM Naboo Royal Security
1 x TPM Naboo Royal Guard
1 x CommTech Stormtrooper
TPM R2-B1
TPM TC-14

I will go on actually, as I too want to see how this would have worked out over the years, but I'm going to post for the moment. Your comments are welcome at any juncture, as this super-list will take me a while.

Tycho
05-04-2007, 06:27 AM
2001
1 x Tusken Raider
1 x Coruscant Senate Guard
2 x Security Droids
2 x Gungan Warriors
2 x Imperial Biker Scout
1 x Mon Calamari Soldier
2 x Sandtrooper (POTJ)
1 x R2-Q5

2001 REV 1
1 x Tessek (Quarren might be popular diorama filler)
2 x Bespin Guard
1 x Ketwol
1 x Duro
1 x Tusken Raider
1 x Coruscant Senate Guard
1 x Security Droids
1 x Gungan Warriors
1 x Imperial Biker Scout
1 x Mon Calamari Soldier
2 x Sandtrooper (POTJ)
1 x R2-Q5

2001 REV 2
2 x Imperial Officer
2 x Rebel Fleet Trooper
1 x R4-M9 (with Mouse Droid - this is important! :crazed:)
Tessek
1 Bespin Guard
Ketwol
1 x Duro
1 x Tusken Raider
1 x Coruscant Senate Guard
1 x Security Droids
1 x Gungan Warriors
1 x Imperial Biker Scout
1 x Mon Calamari Soldier
2 x Sandtrooper (POTJ)
R2-Q5

2002

4 x Sneak Preview Clone
1 x Imperial Officer
1 x Rebel Fleet Trooper
2 x Super Battle Droid
2 x Battle Droid
2 x Geonosian Warrior

2002 REV 1
2 x Clone Captain (red)
2 x Sneak Preview Clone
2 x Royal Guard (red dudes)
2 x Super Battle Droid
2 x Battle Droid
2 x Geonosian Warrior


2002 REV 2
1 x Massif with Geonosian Warrior
2 x Endor Rebel Soldier
1 x Clone Captain (red)
2 x Sneak Preview Clone
2 x Royal Guard (red dudes)
1 x Super Battle Droid
2 x Battle Droid
1 x Geonosian Warrior

2002 REV 3
2 x Republic Gunship Pilot
2 x Destroyer Droid
1 x Tusken Raider
2 x Imperial Officer (both head variants)
2 x Rebel Fleet Trooper (both head variants)
1 x Massif with Geonosian Warrior
1 x Endor Rebel Soldier
1 x Battle Droid


2003
2 x Clone Wars SA Clone Trooper
1 x McQuarrie Concept Trooper
1 x Clone Kids 2-pack (my personal suggestion)
1 x Snowtrooper
1 x Republic Gunship Pilot
1 x Destroyer Droid
1 x (new) Tusken Raider (camp ambush)
1 x Imperial Officer (both head variants)
1 x Rebel Fleet Trooper (both head variants)
1 x Endor Rebel Soldier
1 x Battle Droid

2003 REV 1
2 x Clone Wars ARC Trooper (both color variants)
2 x Clone Wars SA Clone Trooper
1 x McQuarrie Concept Trooper
1 x Clone Kids 2-pack (my personal suggestion)
1 x Snowtrooper
1 x Republic Gunship Pilot
1 x Destroyer Droid
1 x (new) Tusken Raider (camp ambush)
1 x Imperial Officer (both head variants)
1 x Rebel Fleet Trooper (both head variants)


2004

1 x Hoth Rebel Solider (short guy)
1 x J'Quille
1 x Tanus Spijek
1 x TIE Pilot
2 x Clone Wars SA Clone Trooper
1 x Clone Wars ARC Trooper (either color)
1 x McQuarrie Concept Trooper
1 x Snowtrooper
1 x Republic Gunship Pilot
1 x Destroyer Droid
1 x Battle Droid

2004 REV 1
2 x Cloud Car Pilot
1 x TIE Pilot
1 x Jawa 2-pack
1 x Gamorrean Guard repack
2 x Scanning Trooper
2 x Stormtrooper (CommTech era) repack
1 x Sandtrooper (POTJ era) repack
1 x Biker Scout (POTJ era) repack
1 x Hoth Rebel Solider (short guy)

Tycho
05-04-2007, 07:07 AM
2005
1 x Wookiee Warrior (ROTS sneak preview)
1 x Super Battle Droid
2 x Clone Trooper
2 x Grievous' Body Guard
1 x Clone Commander
1 x Clone Pilot
1 x Cloud Car Pilot
1 x Scanning Trooper
1 x Stormtrooper (CommTech era) repack
1 x Biker Scout (POTJ era) repack

2005 REV 1
2 x Clone Trooper Super-Articulated
2 x Wookiee Warrior (both colors)
1 x Niemoidian Warrior
1 x Destroyer Droid
1 x Super Battle Droid
1 x Grievous' Body Guard
1 x Clone Commander
1 x Clone Pilot
1 x Scanning Trooper
1 x Stormtrooper (CommTech era) repack

2005 REV 2
2 x Utopaun Warrior
2 x 501st Clone Trooper
1 x Battle Droid
1 x Senate Guard (red)
1 x Senate Guard (blue)
1 x Wookiee Warrior (new variants)
1 x Destroyer Droid
1 x Grievous' Body Guard
1 x Clone Pilot
1 x Hoth Rebel Soldier (repack)

2006
2 x ATAT Driver
2 x Snowtrooper
1 x Power Droid
1 x Scorch
1 x Utopaun Warrior
1 x 501st Clone Trooper
1 x Battle Droid
1 x Senate Guard (red)
1 x Wookiee Warrior (new variants)
1 x Clone Pilot

2006 REV 1
2 x Firespeeder Pilot
2 x Clone Trooper Utopau
1 x ATAT Driver
1 x Snowtrooper
1 x Scorch
1 x 501st Clone Trooper
1 x Battle Droid
1 x Senate Guard (red)
1 x Wookiee Warrior (new variants)
1 x Clone Pilot


2006 REV 2
1 x Hem Dazon (Arconas are useful)
1 x Sandtrooper
1 x Death Star Gunner
2 x Endor Rebel Soldier (both variants)
1 x Firespeeder Pilot
1 x Clone Trooper Utopau
1 x ATAT Driver
1 x Snowtrooper
1 x Scorch
1 x 501st Clone Trooper
1 x Clone Pilot


2006 REV 3

1 x Rep Been (form a Gungan High Council)
1 x Naboo Soldier
1 x Clone Trooper Sergeant (AOTC green)
2 x Elite Corps Clone (Kashyyyk)
2 x Endor Rebel Soldier (both variants)
1 x Firespeeder Pilot
1 x Clone Trooper Utopau
1 x Super Battle Droid
1 x Battle Droids 2-pack
1 x 501st Clone Trooper

2007
2 x Galactic Marine
2 x Airborne Trooper
2 x Super Battle Droid
1 x Concept Trooper
1 x Clone Trooper Sergeant
1 x Elite Corps Clone (Kashyyyk)
1 x Endor Rebel Soldier (alternate variants)
1 x Battle Droids 2-pack
1 x Clone Trooper Pilot (as V-wing hits stores)


2007 REV 1

2 x Galactic Marine
2 x Airborne Trooper
2 x Super Battle Droid
1 x Concept Trooper
1 x Rebel Honor Guard
2 x Death Star Troopers
1 x Concept Fett (for Mandalorian Commando Squad Builders)
1 x Battle Droids 2-pack


2007 REV 2
1 x Jawa with LIN droid
2 x Stormtrooper
1 x Galactic Marine
1 x Airborne Trooper
1 x Super Battle Droid
1 x Concept Trooper
1 x Rebel Honor Guard
2 x Death Star Troopers
1 x Concept Fett (for Mandalorian Commando Squad Builders)
1 x Battle Droids 2-pack

Certainly the upcoming Ewoks 2 pack, the Clone Trooper, and Destroyer Droid with shield should be considered for inclusion in this line as well.

This concludes my recommendation for the time being. C'mon Hasbro! Try something like this.

Tycho
05-04-2007, 08:02 AM
You know, when I look at these waves of MoSW figures, I see:

- in 1997 Hasbro could have moved army builders and sold more units instead of leaving their retail partners swimming in Bossk, 21-B, 4-LOM, Dengar, ASP-7 Droids, and Malakalis.

- in 1998 Hasbro wouldn't have drowned its retail partners in Leia Ewok Princesses, 8D8, and Mon Mothma.

- in 1999, Luke, Han, and Greedo wouldn't have piled up so bad that R2 with Leia Holo and later waves with Motti and Leia wouldn't be so hard to find. Meanwhile folks could army-build the Naboo without drowing in Nute Gunray and Rune Haako, as well as get more Battle Droids and leave less Qui-Gons and Padmes.

Similar comparisons could be made for each collecting year. In more recent years, many of the figures moved better than in years past, but Lushros Dofine really jammed up the Coruscant Wave while a lot of Utopau Clone army builders vacated that case fast.

JediTricks
05-04-2007, 10:08 PM
June 30th, 2006:
TheJawa.com: Will there be more products specifically geared towards army building in the near future? Either as part of something like the recent EE exclusive Clone Troopers, basic case assortments with 3 each of 4 different troops, or solid cases?
Hasbro: Troops will be an even greater focus later this Fall, but we won't be having cases as heavy as you suggest simply because we don't want to neglect the rest of the core characters and the other figures in the line. It's always a
balancing act getting everything in.
January 26, 2007:
Rebelscum.com: Will Hasbro ever decide to change the distribution in their waves? Let's face it, army builder or not, clones (and the like) are easily the best selling figures due to their numbers on screen. Why not release a wave containing 1 each of slower moving characters such as Palpatine, Darth Vader, Senators, and Cantina extras and another consisting solely of clones (maybe 2 or 3 different ones per case). This way, Hasbro could ensure that peg warmers would not be over-shipped and there would be enough clones for all.
Hasbro: The best way to manage the line, as we have been doing very successfully for the past two years, is to stick with a balanced approach. We balance our cases to ensure that we have the best mix at retail for both kid-targeted figures and collectors, ensuring the best retail "turn" on the pegs. Producing solid case packs of "niche" characters is a sure way to doom the productivity and would lead to these types of figures being dropped entirely, which nobody wants to see.And there are a bunch more comments from Hasbro saying basically the same thing over and over, they are firmly and consistently entrenched in their viewpoint about the matter. That thing about retailers not wanting multiple SKUs for the line, I didn't pull that out of thin air, that was what Hasbro said a while back.

To be honest, I'm not sure they're entirely wrong about this. I do believe firmly that there are some army-building figures that should always be available, such as basic Clone Troopers and Stormtroopers, but based on how Hasbro behaves, I can only see that working as refreshes in wave revisions. I see all these ROTS super-articulated clones around here NOT selling simply because they have minor blue markings, collectors say they want unlimited army builders but the general audience is cooling to the rainbow of clones on the best mold available - what will happen in 4 more months when the casual consumers lose interest in them altogether and there are case after case of them hitting shelves? I remember back in 2000, Hasbro had been under constant criticism for not anticipating interesting in Darth Maul in wave 1 (even though Maul was 4 per case when no other figure in the assortment was that many), so nearly a year too late they put out a solid case of Mauls and then put out another where they updated the accuracy of the face paint mask (this was the infamous fat-face Maul variation on a new card) and within weeks the pegs were now bursting with that wave 1 Maul figure because there was no balance.

Tycho
05-04-2007, 10:58 PM
Thank you for giving serious thought to my proposal! It is appreciated.

Naturally, I love a good debate, and I don't always agree with Hasbro.


June 30th, 2006:
TheJawa.com: Will there be more products specifically geared towards army building in the near future? Either as part of something like the recent EE exclusive Clone Troopers, basic case assortments with 3 each of 4 different troops, or solid cases?
Hasbro: Troops will be an even greater focus later this Fall, but we won't be having cases as heavy as you suggest simply because we don't want to neglect the rest of the core characters and the other figures in the line. It's always a
balancing act getting everything in.

The regular SKU would be running, on traditional cardbacks no less, supplying all the core-characters fan purchases will support. For carded collectors, the troops will also be carded, in pretty much the same quantities they always have been. Army builders will buy from the "tube packs."


January 26, 2007:
Rebelscum.com: Will Hasbro ever decide to change the distribution in their waves? Let's face it, army builder or not, clones (and the like) are easily the best selling figures due to their numbers on screen. Why not release a wave containing 1 each of slower moving characters such as Palpatine, Darth Vader, Senators, and Cantina extras and another consisting solely of clones (maybe 2 or 3 different ones per case). This way, Hasbro could ensure that peg warmers would not be over-shipped and there would be enough clones for all.
Hasbro: The best way to manage the line, as we have been doing very successfully for the past two years, is to stick with a balanced approach. We balance our cases to ensure that we have the best mix at retail for both kid-targeted figures and collectors, ensuring the best retail "turn" on the pegs. Producing solid case packs of "niche" characters is a sure way to doom the productivity and would lead to these types of figures being dropped entirely, which nobody wants to see.

It has been successful, Hasbro? Really? Then I'm just imagining all the Jerjerrods, C-3POs, and Lushros that are hanging around?


That thing about retailers not wanting multiple SKUs for the line, I didn't pull that out of thin air, that was what Hasbro said a while back.

Well, they are wrong in my point of view. That's what I am saying.


I see all these ROTS super-articulated clones around here NOT selling simply because they have minor blue markings,

We never asked for all these EU Clones to army build with. Some do like them, admittedly. But I think one needs enough 501st Clones, for example, that you build your army and then you don't want to raise another one.


collectors say they want unlimited army builders but the general audience is cooling to the rainbow of clones on the best mold available

As you saw by way of my examples above, army builders are not limited to just white armor, OT or PT.


- what will happen in 4 more months when the casual consumers lose interest in them altogether and there are case after case of them hitting shelves?

The replenishing orders at individual stores will slow down, and thus the warehouse orders will cool. Finally, low demand will scale back production. That's the way it's supposed to work. Right now you throw in figures like Malakali was and you're trying to say he's part of the same product line in spite of the fact that he sells very differently.



I remember back in 2000, Hasbro had been under constant criticism for not anticipating interesting in Darth Maul ....

Darth Maul was a very unusual situation because he was a scalper favorite - so much so that it was not only kids and collectors shopping for him (and let's face it - diorama builders needed what? Only 4-5 of him at most?) But a scalper would enter the store in those days and try and buy 10 Mauls immediately if they could get their hands on that many. It was rather sickening.

The other thing that might have happened, was that scalpers returned a lot of the Maul figures they couldn't sell. I didn't see solid cases of Darth Maul myself, but there might have been. I guess JT did see them. Those arriving, on top of the returns, and you'd have a problem.

figrin bran
05-04-2007, 11:24 PM
Tycho, i said that i supported your idea on the LA finds thread and so here's a few of my thoughts...

More than anything, I feel that Hasbro has to see this as a win-win situation for them and unfortunately their responses might be lukewarm at best to this proposal.

A question i want to ask you is if you think there really are that many army builders out there? Not that we of SSG are indicative of everyone that purchases SW figures but even among us, it doesn't seem like there are that many troop builders. I have 20 utapau clones (i think) and have probably passed up that many. If i wanted to, I'm sure i could've ordered at least that many from hasbrotoyshop or kaybeetoys.com. I'm sure this is a function of Hasbro putting this particular figure in several cases and revisions and if every army builder figure was shipped like this, we wouldn't really need the Militaries line.

I think that if the packaging were done nicely enough that even MOC collectors might want to pick up sets. I also think that if they were affordable enough then kids might want to pick up sets as well. How many of us, when we were young, would've bought packs of stormies, snowtroopers, biker scouts if they were available? So having said that, i'm wondering, Tycho, how many figures do you think should be in these packs? maybe 3 or 4? and should a pack consist of all the same figures or have 1 Galactic Marine, 1 Airborne, 1 Super Battle Droid, 1 Death Star Trooper, for instance?

Tycho
05-05-2007, 02:19 AM
Thanks for your input Figrin. I like the support. You do make some good counter-points, and there appears to be a little confusion.




A question i want to ask you is if you think there really are that many army builders out there? Not that we of SSG are indicative of everyone that purchases SW figures but even among us, it doesn't seem like there are that many troop builders.

There are enough that in many cases, there are not movie-appearing clones on the pegs at most retailers. Sure they have the EU Siege Battalion or Engineer or 5th Fleet Security Clones - whomever they are. (Siege Battalion were supposed to be stationed at Kato Niemoidia according to their card - they served under Plo Koon - but we only saw the ARC 170 pilots (standard Clone Pilot uniform) that killed Koon during Order 66).

On Hasbro's part, that was smart for 2 reasons. The movie-authentic army builder does pass them up, and they are left on the rack for the screaming kid that wants a clone (or several). On the other hand, the really over-enthusiastic Army Builder will create a command for General Plo Koon's ground forces. :rolleyes: They may even fight what? - more Hasbro Battle Droids (sold). So EU Clones can find a sale and many like to give every Jedi their own particular command:

Anakin - 501st with Fox, Bow, then Appo (I guess it's a high fatality job)
Obi-Wan - Utopau with Cody
Yoda - Kashyyyk 41st Special Ops with Gree (Luminara & Quinlan Vos' as well)
Mace - EU purple
Plo Koon - siege battalion (EU green)
Ki Adi Mundi - Galactic Marines under Bacara
Aayla Secura - Bly's Star Corps (Bariss Offee's as well)
Stass Allie - Neyo's BARC Troopers
and so forth.

Let alone Palpatine's Shocktroopers - commanded by Deviss?

This also diminished demand for EU Clones, as many had enough to build up armies with here, and regular plain white clones were not in as high of demand (Basic #6 and SA #41 before repaints). Specialties in the movie like AT-RT Driver, AT-TE / Turbo Tank Gunner, and so forth weren't high priorities either.


I have 20 utapau clones (i think) and have probably passed up that many.

You're an Army Builder. You're not when you say "I have one to open, one to keep carded," or some other combination like that. When you have at least 2 loose, you have some kind of Army and at least more of the same figure for the same scene (or display arrangement) than you might buy of say, Obi-Wan (not counting different figures of him like Mustafar versus Pilot). Some will take it to JediMasterSal's extreme - others will do with a lot less than myself or you (I think I have about 20 501st Clones, but less Utopau or Kashyyyk - purposely as well).



If i wanted to, I'm sure i could've ordered at least that many from hasbrotoyshop or kaybeetoys.com.

Well, they seem to have cracked down on Army Building. My package with 6 Death Star Troopers has not yet arrived, but I've heard they limited it to 2 per order now (just after I ordered as a matter of fact)


I'm sure this is a function of Hasbro putting this particular figure in several cases and revisions and if every army builder figure was shipped like this, we wouldn't really need the Militaries line.

I'll agree with that. In actuality, the Utopau Clone and 501st have been handled quite well. It remains to be seen how the new guys like the Galactic Marine and Airborne Trooper fare. However, I don't recall if the Kashyyyk Special Ops Trooper (biker scout repaint) is slated for a Saga Legends release. That would be wise. The figure is still relatively new and I'd buy a few more if I saw them.

The various battle campaign markings actually help cut down on clone hoarding in the sense that I'm done with 501st and Utopau and would ignore them if I saw them resurface. I think. I'm tempted to set up some scene with Appo and Vader and some 501's threatening Antilles and Organa (from Dark Lord).


I think that if the packaging were done nicely enough that even MOC collectors might want to pick up sets.

Cost can be saved by not doing nice packages. I wouldn't say they'd want to knock sales to MOMC collectors, but that wouldn't affect the line moving and might actually stimulate sales of Tusken Raiders or non-main-conflict figures offered in the line. Just for completists. :rolleyes:


I also think that if they were affordable enough then kids might want to pick up sets as well. How many of us, when we were young, would've bought packs of stormies, snowtroopers, biker scouts if they were available?

While there could be "buckets of Stormtroopers," this wouldn't work for Jawas or Gamorreans that well I'd think. My proposal is for the single-packed figures in the case assortments listed above. To be sure, "buckets" of select figures from the line might be offered - stormtroopers, scout troopers, 501sts, Utopaus, etc. but more than 1 Bespin Guard would be sold to diorama builders - just not a bucket of them. In affect, some buckets might be offered with the most popular troops to help satiate demand for those so the cases would not choke on unsold Rebel Troopers or something like that.


So having said that, i'm wondering, Tycho, how many figures do you think should be in these packs? maybe 3 or 4?

Perhaps 5 for $25 or so in a bucket. That's a bargain (would be $35 after tax on cardbacks). If you look at Fallucia, you have Aayla, Bly, and 3 troopers. Most of us don't want the extra Aayla, and a few more don't want her or an extra Bly - they just want the troops to add to these 2 figures they already own. Replacing these 2 with two more troopers and settling the price at $25 or even $20 like the battle packs are run at now (with fancier packaging I might add) would do just fine. Our armies would cost less, be easier to build, and so forth.

Hasbro approaches the current battlepacks (a lot of them) by adding regular line figures to make the display more attractive (Vader in the Tantive IV pack, Mace in the purple Clones pack, etc.) Maybe they also want to force more sales of figures like Aayla out upon us? (They might weight their benefit analysis of each figure tooling with more favor than say "we sold 30 more Aaylas, but 150 more StarCorps Clones." As Army Builders, we don't necessarily favor the latter.



and should a pack consist of all the same figures or have 1 Galactic Marine, 1 Airborne, 1 Super Battle Droid, 1 Death Star Trooper, for instance?

That could also sell, but wouldn't be as directly useful compared with when people could directly pick out the exact figures they want a lot of.

In any case, the proposal is extremely late. As I illustrated, this could have worked well over the last 12 years. Most of us, myself and JediMasterSal included, have pretty much all we need. There might be new troop builders out there coming of age (that is turning 4 or older), but with the movies behind us and the TV shows sort of still in limbo, we don't know exactly how the future looks for supporting this idea.

That is in fact the best argument against it - "too little, too late." We'll see. The current case assortments seem to be pretty good for the first few waves:

Galactic Marine
Airborne
Concept Trooper
Super Battle Droid
-----------------
R2D2
Obi-Wan
Mace
Lava Miner


AND

Death Star Trooper
Rebel Honor Guard
Mc Quarrie Fett w. 2 heads
-------------------------
Biggs
Luke
Han

They'll at least keep the core characters on the pegs in stock. I wouldn't exactly call them pegwarming at this point. They are the only TAC in stock since the troops aren't going to sit.

I mean, we'll see how future TAC waves sell. But the future looks brighter on its own. However, those of us who are saturated in the troops of collecting years' past, did so while boosting Malakali's sales for Hasbro (remember the retailers had to buy them from Hasbro and then clearanced them eventually). So maybe this idea is better for us and not for Hasbro?

figrin bran
05-05-2007, 03:02 AM
Thanks for your clarifications and answers Tycho!

although i've been buying SW figures as long as most of us have been, i've only been army building since 05 and so i don't have as many OT troops as most other army builders. I would stand to benefit greatly were this to ever get off the ground.

I sure wouldn't mind the plain packaging at all. I think Sal once talked about troopers being plastic bagged in put in a plain white box. The reason why i suggested nicer packaging is because well, Hasbro seems to always drag its feet when it comes to packages of army builders. Like you pointed out, the battlepacks are only partial army builders and they always feel compelled to stick in Aayla or Vader or Mace. Hasbro seems to always get cold feet and so that's why i suggested the nice packaging for MOC'ers so that they could get it into their heads as a win win situation.

Tycho
05-05-2007, 04:54 AM
That's a good idea, Figrin.

Your situation also proves that there is a market for OT army building.

Enertainment Earth is still offering the 1998 Endor Rebels in a 4-pack (http://http://www.entertainmentearth.com/prodinfo.asp?number=HS26761)

They have astromechs of course (http://http://www.entertainmentearth.com/prodinfo.asp?number=HS87057)

and more astromechs (http://http://www.entertainmentearth.com/prodinfo.asp?number=HS87056)

I believe there were (in the past):

CommTech Stormtroopers 4
Sandtroopers 4 (I'm not sure about the ranks included)
Rebel Fleet Troopers 4 (2 of each headsculpt)
AOTC Clone Troopers 4 white "clean"
AOTC Clone Troopers 4 white "battle hardened"
AOTC Clone Troopers 4 ranked (yellow, red, blue, green) "clean"
AOTC Clone Troopers 4 ranked (yellow, red, blue, green) "battle hardened"

As to any of the rank packs, they were sort of hard to deal with, as there could be:

4 sergeants to 1 lieutenant

thus

32 sergeants to 8 lieutenants

and

8 lieutenants to 4 captains

and

4 captains to 2 Commanders

So 4-packs really don't work for rank colored clones that well.

waboritas
05-05-2007, 10:02 AM
although i've been buying SW figures as long as most of us have been, i've only been army building since 05 and so i don't have as many OT troops as most other army builders. I would stand to benefit greatly were this to ever get off the ground.

I sure wouldn't mind the plain packaging at all. I think Sal once talked about troopers being plastic bagged in put in a plain white box. The reason why i suggested nicer packaging is because well, Hasbro seems to always drag its feet when it comes to packages of army builders. Like you pointed out, the battlepacks are only partial army builders and they always feel compelled to stick in Aayla or Vader or Mace. Hasbro seems to always get cold feet and so that's why i suggested the nice packaging for MOC'ers so that they could get it into their heads as a win win situation.

I'm with you. I want OT stormtroopers and lots of them. I don't want them with Vaders or Rebel Fleet Troopers ala the battle pack. I've stated it in other posts before, that Hasbro is E3 clone happy. How many battlepacks have we seen with E3 clones (I consider EU that were not on screen but in the E3 image E3 clones)? I passed on the Tantive IV pack because of the Vader. Had it been 3 stormtroopers and 2 Rebel troopers, I probably would have bought 2 or 3. Had it been all stormtroopers, I probably would have bought 4 or 5.

I missed the EE clone multi-packs for E2 clones. I wouldn't mind seeing E2 clones released in multi-packs or battle packs either.

I just got back from an hour long trip to the 3 Targets by my house. The first had pegs jammed with Saga 2 and a few TAC Obi Wans, Lukes, and R2s mixed in. The second, which I hit last night (and had nothing), had 4 pegs full of TAC Wave C. I finally got the McQuarie Concept Stormtrooper (I would have bought all they had but, they only had 1). I passed on a second Concept Fett. The third target was packed with Saga 2.

I plan on hitting KB this afternoon and see what is going on in there as I have not been to one in months. With Target and Walmart at $6.63/figure, if KB is $6.99 now and has decent stock, I may start frequenting them as it seems more difficult than ever to find what I want.

Tycho
05-05-2007, 12:39 PM
Hi waboritas. Welcome to the boards. I think you've been here a while, but I don't recall us ever having the opportunity to chat.

There is good news for you: in the TAC wave 3 (I think) there is a stormtrooper w. removeable helmet (keep it on and you won't be reminded "Jango" is underneath the mask if you don't think about it). As always, you'll unfortunately have to fight the distribution system on this and
hope some less popular figures (read core characters sell through:

There will be 12 figures in a case of course, and presumably you want about 25 OT Stormtroopers. At 2 stormies per case, you'll need to find 11 cases of figures. Which might mean 5 or more SUCCESSFUL trips to Target during morning run "opening" hours and racing scalpers and other collectors depending upon where you live (not to mention sharing your finds if you're fair to those who are also there).

That being said, your leavings need a market in which are sold:


22 Darth Vaders to people who presumably don't have him yet?! (I'm suckered into 1 because of the Obi-Wan cape stand accessory. That's cool.)

22 Biggs Darklighter (Academy Outfit) -this could clear with 11 collectors of one-loose-one-carded, as he is a brand new sculpt.

22 Luke Skywalker (Tatooines nonetheless) but moisture farmers will want this


22 Jawa & LIN Droid - I could actually see this being army built. Plus we haven't had a Jawa since 2004 I think. It will sell.

22 McQuarrie Concept Chewbacca - this will sell since it's new, since there are McQuarrie collectors, and since he can be a random alien to diorama builders.

22 M'iiyoom Onith (Cantina Alien) - will probably require 11 2-of-each collectors, but might move due to the curved bar sections. However, the straight bar sections were last offered in what? 2004?

22 Elis Helrots - might move a bit faster than the Nightlilly's but the case could be made for purchases to be on par with her sales, too.


But all these figures sold just gets YOU, 1 dude, your army. And you're not the only one who will want 25 stormtroopers. If you succeed, the next guy is going to be leaving at least a lot of Lukes and Darths behind him.

22 perhaps, and remember, every 12 tells the computer not to order more inventory - even if the figures are hidden by stashing customers or returned within 90 days.

JediTricks
05-06-2007, 06:01 PM
Let me first reiterate that I firmly believe Hasbro needs to put more focus on the armies of Star Wars, keeping product like Stormtroopers and pilots and such always somewhat available, either through putting them back into main line cases every 3 months or keeping a consistent flow with the balance in their favor in the Saga Legends line.



The regular SKU would be running, on traditional cardbacks no less, supplying all the core-characters fan purchases will support. For carded collectors, the troops will also be carded, in pretty much the same quantities they always have been. Army builders will buy from the "tube packs."They already have 2 SKUs for the line, 30th Anniversary Collection and Saga Legends, these are run basically as "collection 1" and "collection 2" used to be. But retailers don't want a new line SKU that separates the SW brand further, Hasbro says the Greatest Hits line exists purely out of necessity because the demand was overwhelming the main line and a catch-up line was born from that.

As for tube packs, while that's a fun idea, I think we're getting deep into "dream on" territory, you're talking about taking some of the most expensive standard-sized figures and lowering their prices - I don't think Hasbro's going to go that low on something like a VOTC Stormtrooper body that has 17+ individual parts, nearly all of which require individual paint masks, not to mention complex assembly; and on the flip side, I don't think consumers are going to want to pay over $12 for a tube of 3 little figures.


It has been successful, Hasbro? Really? Then I'm just imagining all the Jerjerrods, C-3POs, and Lushros that are hanging around?Funny you should pick up on that specifically in response to what Hasbro said, because they were talking about balance there and then they go and put Jerjerrod & Lushros in multiple waves across multiple revisions, the exact opposite of the balance they were talking about. They just kept putting those guys out over and over, and that's a good example of a lack of balance, the kind I said your plan seemed like to me.

As for 3PO, for some reason he tanked almost immediately in his case, which is a shame because he's awesome, but the market wasn't into him at the time.


Well, they are wrong in my point of view. That's what I am saying.I disagree, they're worried that separate SKUs become competition within the brand at each other rather than supporting each other. Look at what happened with SOTE, that was a separate SKU and a separate card, retailers had to stock it differently and it choked and died and kept them from moving the main line again because collectors didn't respond. Or the EU line, that was a separate SKU and because Hasbro didn't anticipate the demand that SKU was never in stock enough for retailers. Deluxes are a great example, they're supposed to be the same line but naturally they have to be a separate SKU, and deluxes always fail to sell strong - ALWAYS. Plus, separate SKUs mean creating an entire line of product to support a few good ideas, if SOTE had been integrated into the POTF2 line from the beginning, they could have released Xizor and Dash in a better balance and we wouldn't have suffered so many other unselling products like comic 2packs and squat Snoova figs and exposed-neck Luke disguise figs and awful vehicles (this is the same logic I posed to Hasbro about themed waves in the TSC and TAC lines recently, they returned by saying it usually works ok and gives them something to shoot for, but some ideas and even complete figures have to be put on the back burner to wait until the rest of the wave is done).


We never asked for all these EU Clones to army build with. Some do like them, admittedly. But I think one needs enough 501st Clones, for example, that you build your army and then you don't want to raise another one.A lot of collectors did ask for more types of clones though, collector demand for more skittlestroopers was pretty high 18 months ago.


As you saw by way of my examples above, army builders are not limited to just white armor, OT or PT.I think that overwhelmingly they are. Virtually nobody wants to build Naboo armies or Geonosian armies or even Rebel armies, and it seems like Battle Droid armies are never in the numbers that Clones and Stormies are. Almost nobody wants to build a vast army of Sandtroopers beyond a handful, not many consumers want to go big with Snowtrooper and Biker Scout armies either. So again we're facing the balance issue, and I believe that overwhelmingly the balance tips heavily into the white armor guys. I would say that the breakdown would look like this for the median:

20-35 Stormtroopers
10-25 ROTS Clone Troopers (not counting specialty figs like pilots or airbornes or marines, if we were counting them I'd kick that number up to 30)
15-20 AOTC Clone Troopers
5-15 Snowtroopers
5-10 Biker Scouts
3-20 Battle Droids
1-10 Super Battle Droids
1-5 Droideka
1-6 Gungan Warriors
1-6 Naboo warriors (mixed styles)
1-6 Rebel Fleet Troopers
2-8 Hoth Rebels (mixed styles)
3-10 Endor Rebels (mixed styles)
1-5 Jawas
1-5 Gamorreans
2-8 Tusken Raiders
0-5 Ewoks
1-5 Wookiees
2-8 Royal Guards
0-4 Senate GuardsAnd I'm not even going to guess numbers for pilots, it's all over the map there, but keep in mind that the AOTC, ROTS, and AT-AT pilots are all more white armor. I'd say there's almost no demand for weird ROTS warriors like Neimoidians and Utapauns and Greivous' droid guards.


The replenishing orders at individual stores will slow down, and thus the warehouse orders will cool. Finally, low demand will scale back production. That's the way it's supposed to work. Right now you throw in figures like Malakali was and you're trying to say he's part of the same product line in spite of the fact that he sells very differently.That's not realistic, the market moves faster while shipping moves slower so Hasbro has to produce product way in advance in anticipation of expectations. When the slow-down occurs, product will keep flowing at pre-slow-down rates for 2 more months or so, that's not even counting how long it'll take to hit shelves after making room. It's a perfect recipe for pegwarming.

And even if we put that aside, the market isn't going to wait too long while Hasbro finds out they need to make more, changes their production schedule to accommodate, ramps up new production, takes weeks to ship it to US shores where it takes weeks more to get to retailers' warehouses so they can turn around and ship it out to their stores.


Darth Maul was a very unusual situation because he was a scalper favorite - so much so that it was not only kids and collectors shopping for him (and let's face it - diorama builders needed what? Only 4-5 of him at most?) But a scalper would enter the store in those days and try and buy 10 Mauls immediately if they could get their hands on that many. It was rather sickening.That doesn't negate the point I made.


The other thing that might have happened, was that scalpers returned a lot of the Maul figures they couldn't sell. I didn't see solid cases of Darth Maul myself, but there might have been. I guess JT did see them. Those arriving, on top of the returns, and you'd have a problem.I saw them in person over and over, at one point my local TRUs were leaving the cases on the floors next to sidekicks bursting with Mauls.



There are enough that in many cases, there are not movie-appearing clones on the pegs at most retailers. Sure they have the EU Siege Battalion or Engineer or 5th Fleet Security Clones - whomever they are. (Siege Battalion were supposed to be stationed at Kato Niemoidia according to their card - they served under Plo Koon - but we only saw the ARC 170 pilots (standard Clone Pilot uniform) that killed Koon during Order 66).Again I feel it necessary to point out that Hasbro is firmly entrenched in their beliefs that the casual consumers (kids, parents, casual collectors) are the core audience to the line, hardcore collectors are a powerful but minority dollar, and I don't think casual collectors will know the difference between EU and in-movie clones - hell, I don't even know half the time because they got so little vital screentime.



It remains to be seen how the new guys like the Galactic Marine and Airborne Trooper fare.Considering how fresh the line still is, they actually seem to be not too shabby in that regard.


However, I don't recall if the Kashyyyk Special Ops Trooper (biker scout repaint) is slated for a Saga Legends release. You mean the "Elite Corps Clone Trooper", and I don't believe so as of yet, though the line will have the VTSC Biker Scout.


Cost can be saved by not doing nice packages. I wouldn't say they'd want to knock sales to MOMC collectors, but that wouldn't affect the line moving and might actually stimulate sales of Tusken Raiders or non-main-conflict figures offered in the line. Just for completists. :rolleyes: Packaging helps get casual consumers' support, Hasbro doesn't need to go overboard but they can't be lax either.


Perhaps 5 for $25 or so in a bucket. That's a bargain (would be $35 after tax on cardbacks).It'd be OVER $35 after tax on basic cards. The problem is that casual consumers on toys generally have a sweet-spot pricepoint and that's $20, but these figures aren't much product so you go 4 for $20 and it'll look like not a lot of product, same with 3 for $15. It's pretty tough to really find that sweet spot balance.



I'm with you. I want OT stormtroopers and lots of them. I don't want them with Vaders or Rebel Fleet Troopers ala the battle pack. I've stated it in other posts before, that Hasbro is E3 clone happy. How many battlepacks have we seen with E3 clones (I consider EU that were not on screen but in the E3 image E3 clones)? I passed on the Tantive IV pack because of the Vader. Had it been 3 stormtroopers and 2 Rebel troopers, I probably would have bought 2 or 3. Had it been all stormtroopers, I probably would have bought 4 or 5.Man, that's too bad, that Tantive IV pack is great, it's worth getting at least 1. I only bought 1 and kinda regret it now. This is a prime example of the issues though, Tantive IV is 4 army builders for $20 plus a Vader, but buyers get spooked by army building that set and having all those leftover Vaders even though they'd be paying a decent $5 a pop for Stormtroopers and Rebel Fleet Troopers (I'm obviously not counting your disinterest in the Rebels in that). My point is that both you and I with this Tantive IV set have proven that perception matters greatly even when it's a misconception of the value.

figrin bran
05-06-2007, 11:18 PM
I know it's comparing apples and oranges and that their Q&A answers would suggest that Hasbro operates in a vacuum and "oblivious" to other toy companies, but i wonder if they're taking note of the success that Lego seems to be having with their clone and battle droid army builder packs. While those sets do come with BARCs and senate pods and troop transports and a STAP, that's just to circumvent the Lego minifigure embargo.

Stores just can't seem to keep them in stock and usually it seems like they sell out within a week or less.

Jargo
05-08-2007, 07:18 PM
weirdly, I was just thinking along similar lines regarding other areas of star wars. while I don't think slid cases is the way to go at all. the number of avid army builders is significantly lower than anyone might want to believe with most people only having small groups rather than grand masses of figures. but there is clearly a need for a constant dribble of staple troopers. much in the way that kenner had it with the vintage line. not necessarily in great numbers anywhere but there was always a stormtrooper around if you wanted one.

it's got to be a huge headache for hasbro arranging case assortments and more specifically wave assortments and revisions. forums are full of people saying they'll buy up vast quantities but in reality it often proves to be untrue.

I think some sort of splitting up of the basic line might be a good way to go though. in the same vein as vehicles are split off into small medium and large, splitting off troopers as a sub line could work. the battle packs were a start but all that fancy packaging pushes cost up. it would need to be simpler. could still have movie based assortments to vary it up a bit and still have similar numbers of figures in each set but say one of each trooper figure. so for example in an ANH set you'd get a stormtrooper, sandtrooper, death star trooper, rebel fleet trooper and rebel infantry trooper using the honour guard sculpt but with a new head sculpted wearing a cap.
yes it would be tough if you weren't a fan of one side or the other but hasbro has to try and please all the people all the time and that's impossible from an economic standpoint. those five figures as a set in simpler box, or even large flat blister pack would cover your ANH trooper needs though.
for ESB you could have basic white uniform hoth rebel soldier, Hoth echo base rebel with brown vest, snowtrooper, bespin guard, stormtrooper.
ROTJ with Endor rebel, scout trooper, stormtrooper, A-wing pilot, B-wing pilot, ranked Imperial officer.
examples only but they're the kind of set a kid would buy as it covers a lot of needs and it gets army builders into collectors and diorama builders hands.

there are people with more of an interest in prequel characters who could do clone packs.

I would also extend the format to droids though. a boxed set of the six astro droids from the naboo royal starship. a set of rebel droids, imperial astro droids, trade federation droids. coruscant droids, tatooine droids.

you could further the idea with species sets. a box of neimoidians or rodians. mon calamari or nikto. and so on.

while the single carded figures should never be phased out as it provides an excellent means of finding that one particular character you like and want there's also plenty more scope fr other ways of grouping figures that logically fit together. putting older figures with newer ones that makes more sense than some of these battle packs where it feels like a handful of figures were literally just thrown in a box coz they closest to hand.

i'm typing as I think here, it's not a deeeply considered post at all. I just think there's a lot more could be done with these figures to keep them out there than the sloppy refresh waves and voting for a 'legend' selection. with six movies, animated shows, comics, video games, a tv show if it ever happens, there's a rich diversity of product to pull from and currently things are a bit grim where hasbro's choosing and marketing is concerned.

Phantom-like Menace
05-17-2007, 03:05 AM
I believe most of this thread could be answered with better battlepacks.

Make battlepacks straight troopers.

Don't include some individual figure we don't want or need. I've got more Darth Vaders, Anakin Skywalkers, Mace Windus and Aayla Securas than I really know what to do with because I've purchased several of each of their battlepacks for the troops.

Hasbro's done some nice things with battlepacks, but it would be so much easier to do them better.

Tycho
05-17-2007, 03:45 AM
Do you think the extra non-troopers are included with battle packs because:

1) Hasbro has extra Darth Vaders, Aaylas, Maces, etc. that they need to get released?

2) A main character or peripheral one attracts parents who purchase the item as a gift, saying "Ooh, look: this one comes with Darth Vader?" It offers a mini-diorama ready-made - such as Fallucia.

3) Figures that sell out fast (they presumed Aayla, Mace, Vader, etc. sold off the pegs pretty quick) are offered this way as well so kids can get them. (Vader has gone through several periods of great availability to hardly being able to be seen in the stores. Aayla was never a pegwarmer, though she wasn't too hard to get. I'm an 8am shopper, so naturally I got these on my first try - but I did sometimes stop in afternoons and I'd see 3-5 of them in the larger SW displays back in the day. That doesn't constitute pegwarming - see Lushros Dofine for an example).

4) Hasbro sticks some non-army builders in there so that single-buyers are discouraged from wiping a whole shipment out when they encounter it. If you're going to be stuck with all those extra Darth Vaders, buying 9 more Tantive IV battle packs might be less appealing to you, whereas you might have bought 15 if it were solid troopers. Also, the more army builders you have to get from single-figure sales, the more the store profits. As you get the Fleet Troopers and Stormtroopers for about $4.25 each, plus a Vader for the same price (which you didn't need) by buying the Battle Pack. TAC Stormtroopers and Rebels would be $7.14 each (in CA) bought separately. So the store would gross $11.56 more per 4 single carded troopers sold. Single-carded sales are better for the retailer's bottom line. Battlepacks might start kids out and look like a bargain for a parent birthday shopping, then lead to loose collecting. Completists would buy anything even the Malakali Clone Battle Pack. :crazed:

Jargo
05-17-2007, 10:31 AM
i think one of the things hasbro gets completely wrong is that kids need to see vader or luke or anakin in everything. when i was a kid it was just a case of what looked cool and interesting. I bought figures that i didn't have and ignored those i had already. hasbro does seem to underestimate the intelligence of kids. it would be interesting to conduct a survey among kids to see what they really want. i would imagine they'd be just as peeve to be getting vaders with everything too.

fair enough kids can be destructive during play and ruin a figure and need it replacing but that's not likely to happen every few weeks. parents are going to look at stuff and say "don't you already have that figure?" speaking of vaders and luke and co. army figures are easy to spot as such and in the toy soldier realm acceptable as group purchases.

even with no movies out there right now star wars is a well known brand that's instantly recognisable because it has the name emblazoned across every piece of packaging. it's stamped on every single toy. you can't fail to know what a toy is from or based on. battlepacks where there is one new figure to four several times released ones is just crass. it's exploitation. battlepacks where you get stuff that was single packed just a couple of months ago is crass.

to me a battlepack should be about creating a mini force of a particular type of figure. if it's imperial troops then make it stormtroopers and scout troopers and snowtroopers. if it's imperial command then make it death star troopers and imperial officers and imperial generals and admirals.

much like the unleashed line does. but even tighter in focus.

rebel pilots A,B,X,Y wing pilots. Naboo militia, royal guard, royal soldier, royal officer (panaka with different head) and that new naboo soldier in the red/yellow suit.

context based packs of one force that really build an army. mixing two opposing force in one box is just weak and so dillutes the feeling of a battling force that it really doesn't encourage parents to spend more money on extra sets. whereas having single forces in separate sets will encourage multiple purchases even if it's just to buy one of each set.

dual force sets also don't play fair to those who may only actually want to build one side, be it rebels or imperials naboo or clones. hasbro is dictating that you buy figures you don't want in order to get those you do and that is indeed crass.

hasbro wants to make the most money they can from the same product time and time again. which they could do. if they presented it in ways that make sense. their current methods of multipacking are discouraging multiple purchases amonst all but the hardened army builders. who are few. to engage the masses they have to rethink and come up with a better way to market multipacks and as i've outlined above one army per set is a tighter way to do that.

Tycho
05-17-2007, 10:46 AM
Good post Jargo!

When I was a kid, I knew who Admiral Piett and General Rieeken were - and I wanted their figures added to my KENNER toy line. So naturally, when the modern collection made them, I was very excited. I'd wanted these guys for all my life (uh - yeah - literally, hehe)

Some of the battle packs started with hero / villain sets:

There was:

Luke Jedi
Han Endor Raid
Chewie (Cloud City I think?)
Stormtrooper
Darth Vader

in one set. I think it was slower to move than some of today's sets like Fallucia or Tantive IV. But it was a great gift item for someone that had no figures before (even though those were some of the worst sculpts of these characters).

There was also:

TaunTaun w. bellyslit
Leia Hoth
Chewie Hoth
Luke Hoth
R3-orange

How do you guys evaluate sets like these?

jedi master sal
05-17-2007, 12:10 PM
I'd wanted these guys for all my life (uh - yeah - literally, hehe)

And so the truth finally comes out...heh heh.


Seriously though, I understand most of these posts. Most make sense from our perspective. Heck go a little further to say that because Hasbro isn't packing them right, many people wait for them to go on sale. I know that's what I did with the Tantive pack. I only bought one a full retail price. Then I thought, wait, these aren't goign to sell fast. Mostly becuase of the VAder and to a lesser extent the lower quality Rebel fleet troopers. So lo' and behold a few weeks later, they go on sale for half the price. Heck 5 figures for $10 is a deal, almost regardless of who they are. Since 2 were stormies, that almost already makes it worth it. It's also a little easier to forgive lower quality figs like th fleet trooper when you are buying them cheap. Heck, I just tossed the extra Vaders into baggies then into my donation box. So I do agree the packs could be packed better, but if you take a chance and wait for sales then you can make it work for you. Oh and once they went on sale, I bought 4 more of them.

Had the sets contained 3 Stormies and 2 Fleet troopers, I would have bought the 5 total at full retail price. So this affects the retail store directly. Then indirectly Hasbro because the stores just want to get rid of them. Doesn't make for a good business relationship for them.

Now conversely thake the Clone Attack on Coruscant pack. 4 Grey clones and the Blue Bacara repaint. Okay, I didn't need the Bacara repaints except for one, but it's cool. 4 gray clones even though they were the inferior Jet Pack mold were still a great deal. I bought several at full price. If the set would have included say Yoda (who was there Jedi General), I wouldn't have bee so quick to purchase that many.

So sometimes Hasbro does get it right, but quite often for we collectors, they do not.



Man, I'm so glad I'm coming to a close on army building and getting closer to quitting collecting altogether...

El Chuxter
05-17-2007, 12:35 PM
Amen, Jargo. Kids don't want fifteen Vaders. I'm sure there are a lot of Battlepacks actually being passed upon because mommy says, "But, Jimmy, you already have a Darth Vader." Never mind that, given the cost of individual figures, the Vader is essentially free. Parents don't look at it that way.

jedi master sal
05-17-2007, 06:52 PM
Amen, Jargo. Kids don't want fifteen Vaders. I'm sure there are a lot of Battlepacks actually being passed upon because mommy says, "But, Jimmy, you already have a Darth Vader." Never mind that, given the cost of individual figures, the Vader is essentially free. Parents don't look at it that way.

That's how I took it with the Tantive set. But I saw how they weren't flying off the shelf, so I took the chance and waited for clearance. And I'm so glad I did. Two good figs in the sotrmies, two fairly good figs in the rebel troopers and a Vader for $10 is beyond a good deal. Almost makes you feel like you are stealing rom them....almost.

I'm going to have so many sets of figures to give away this year. I'm certain there are going to be quite a few less fortunate kids who are going to have a good Christmas because of this. And I'm not looking for praise here. I want to do this. I was one of those kids way back when, so I know what it's like.

I've got extras of Vader, Mace, Yoda, Palpatine, Aayla, Obi, Anakin. Might even throw in the Blys and some of the ARC pilots.

Most of these came from clearances, so essentially they were the free figures in the packs.

I may just look for local shelters and such and just hand them out to the kiddies. Then at least I know they are going to the right people. That's one thing I do worry about when I donate. Are there greedy people out there who look to "plunder the booty" so to speak.

Phantom-like Menace
05-17-2007, 11:44 PM
Do you think the extra non-troopers are included with battle packs because: . . .

Honestly, I think they're just trying to please too many people. "Oh, we can make army builders happy, and we can throw in a related non army builder for anyone who wants one of those." The problem with the first part of that idea is that army builders are not happy because we're not looking to army build a unique character, and the problem with the second part is if anyone just wanted the unique character could have gotten it cheaper without having to purchase the army. How many people want both? I can't imagine too many. So the other 99.9% who only wanted the army or the unique figure are disappointed.

Now I understand the unique figure is essentially free, but that would have been the case with one more army builder as well. Tell me I'm looking at the glass half empty if you want, but I'm telling you a very small amount of effort above what we got would make that glass overflow with awesomeness, so why shouldn't it?

jedi master sal
05-18-2007, 01:10 PM
Honestly, I think they're just trying to please too many people. "Oh, we can make army builders happy, and we can throw in a related non army builder for anyone who wants one of those." The problem with the first part of that idea is that army builders are not happy because we're not looking to army build a unique character, and the problem with the second part is if anyone just wanted the unique character could have gotten it cheaper without having to purchase the army. How many people want both? I can't imagine too many. So the other 99.9% who only wanted the army or the unique figure are disappointed.

Now I understand the unique figure is essentially free, but that would have been the case with one more army builder as well. Tell me I'm looking at the glass half empty if you want, but I'm telling you a very small amount of effort above what we got would make that glass overflow with awesomeness, so why shouldn't it?

I agree with this statement.

Heh, though it may have made army builders buy just one less battle pack.

Example: Mace's troop battle pack
1 Mace
1 "Commander" (really airborne trooper)
3 grunts

Let's say you want to have 15-16 grunts at least.
Using the battle pack as it was means you would have to buy 5 sets. However take away Mace and throw in another grunt and you've got 16 grunts in just 4 sets. So Hasbro lost money because you didn't get the extra set.

To further illustrate it, the Clone Attack on Coruscant pack was:
1 Blue Bacara repaint
4 grey Coruscant grunt clones

I wanted 16 of those grunts, so I only bought 4 sets. Had the set come with Yoda (who was their commander), plus a blue Bacara and three grunts, I would have either settled on 12 grunts only getting 4 sets or maybe bought a fifth set to get at least 15 grunts. Not 16, but close. Hasbro lost money on me because of this.

Mind you I do agree completely that Battle pack sets should be all army builders and have the "heroes" be single carded, providing the heroes are carded and available at the time the Battle packs hit the shelves. Heck even the packaging on the battle pack can say something like "Look for Jedi General (insert name here) to lead your troops into battle." That would get kids pump to buy that sinlge carded fig as well as parents another figure to look for and buy so it goes with the troops. However if the kid and of course collector already have the Jedi General or whatever appropriate commander, then we have the option to pass on the single carded fig and load up on the troops.

I know many of you are big on Battle droids, but dang I'd like to see a nice battle pack of those with no commanders. Since these are coming 2 to a single card then there could be at least 6 figures in a battle pack. If hasbro HAD to switch up figs, then maybe one battle droid commander and one Super Battle droid, then the rest grunts. But no Dookus or Grevious.

Ooh and what about a Greivous bodyguard set? This would have been great shortly after ROTS, but those figs have fizzled a little. Mind you I haven't checked on eBay to see the going rate nowadays, but if it's comparable to single carded figs, then a battle pack of 5 of them would be cool. Since they came in two color, Hasbro could go with a third color as well to entice us a bit. there was the blueish/gray and the whiteish color ones. So something that makes sense. Maybe more gray and no blue, so it's like "gunmetal gray." But again, no specific characters. So in that set would be 2 blue/gray, 2 white, and 1 all gray. Or maybe 4 white, 1 gray, or 4 blue/gray and 1 gray. The gray one would be noted as a commander in all of these sets.

Well I could go on for some time, but I'll shut my trap here.

Phantom-like Menace
05-19-2007, 09:47 PM
Heck even the packaging on the battle pack can say something like "Look for Jedi General (insert name here) to lead your troops into battle." That would get kids pump to buy that sinlge carded fig as well as parents another figure to look for and buy so it goes with the troops.

That's exactly what I thought. Then Hasbro and retailers get the money for the set and the single carded figure instead of just the money for the set. And army builders get more of the set. It seems everyone wins.

jedi master sal
05-20-2007, 12:07 PM
That's exactly what I thought. Then Hasbro and retailers get the money for the set and the single carded figure instead of just the money for the set. And army builders get more of the set. It seems everyone wins.


And just the kind of logic Hasbro won't respond too, because WE said it. They really don't like to listen to collectors. They'd rather get all the praise themselves when something goes right, but then blame it on collectors, oil prices (which affects petroleum which affects plastics), shipping delays, and foreign manufacturing problems when things don't go right. Instead of squarely taking the blame for just plain old porr decision making by themselves.

Battle packs SHOULD be all about troops. No Heroes, heck not even really troop commanders. This is Star WARS. Battle packs by the name infer battles and who does the MAJORITY of the fighting? The grunts of course. Plenty enough room on the pegs for the Heroes and troop commanders. Heck most of us only need one of them (I'm not inculding myself or Tycho in that be we are a rare sort), so why pack a hero and/or troop commander in a battle pack?

I'd really love to see straight battle backs of the troops who were most seen in the movies, then if successful Hasbro could venture into the minor troops, then maybe characters for which some people would like multiples of. 4 or 5 figures to a pack. Mostly depending on size. Sell the packs for $20 tops.

Okay so I've made this list before but here goes again (and no I'm not doing this for Tycho)

OT Major Troops:
Stormtroopers
Snowtroopers
Biker Scouts
Hoth Rebel Soldiers

OT Minor troops:
Sandtrooper (Black Paulron)
Sandtrooper (Grey Paulron)
Sandtrooper (White Paulron)
Death Star troopers
Death Star Gunners
Imperial officers (black)
Imperial officers (gray) Lieutenants (two "pips")
Imperial officers (gray) Commanders (three "pips")
Rebel Honor Guard (with caps for each too, so we can choose if we want them to be Guards or soldiers)
Rebel Hangar crew
AT-AT drivers
Bespin Guards
AT-ST drivers
Endor Rebel Soldiers

OT Multiple sets (other)
Jawas
Tuskens
Ugnaughts
Gammoreans

Yes I know there may be more, but these make sense as 4-5 figure packs.

Prequel sets:
Major:
SA Gungan Warrior
Battle Droid (Both ALL tan sets and ALL red sets)
ALL white SA Clone trooper (AOTC)
Utapau troopers
501st troopers
Elite Clone trooper (Kashyyyk)

Minor:
Red Security Battle droids
Blue Pilot Battle droids!
AOTC Clone Pilots (now SA please)
Super Battle droid
ROTS Clone Pilots
Airborne trooper (Utapau)
Shocktrooper
Galactic Marines
Coruscant troopers
Bly's clones
AT-RT drivers
Grevious Bodyguards (ALL blue and ALL white sets)
Destoyer droids (include at least a couple "shields" too)

Multiple sets (other)
Utapau Warriors (SA)

That roughly covers them. Again I'm sure there's more, but take a look at the list and really think do people want many sets of aliens other than the ones I posted? Probably not. You may, but that's not enough for Hasbro.

Again, all of these sets would be GRUNTS ONLY. I tried to keep them listed as to how many were seen in the movies, hence why some are considered Major and others Minor.

Having ONLY one type of figure in a pack makes it much easier to decide how many packs we are willing to get. As an example, take the Sandtroopers. I'd buy two to thre sets of the black paulron ones, while only 2 grey and then one white. But that gives ME the option. Instead of dealing with dispropotionate amount of troopers to officers to heroes to contend with, that give me unwanted figures, which make me feel like I'm losing money.

NOTE, this was kept to MOVIE ONLY figures.
Enough with th EU clones. Single card those ones. Most people will only get one maybe two of them so Hasbro can make the most money off them that way as opposed to a battle pack. (Again yes I understand the Battle Packs are $20 and the figus are $7.50-inc. tax so it would seem Batle packs are bigger money makers.) But to include heroes and/or troop commanders in those sets, really is wasteful and a deterrent to all but the most hardcore army builders (and yes, I'll include myself there), and we don't account for as many sales. Casual collectors and many kids are not predisposed to getting battle packs of troops who were not seen in the movies. Besides, EU clones, concept clones etc. are not really thought of to be in high numbers, so why army build them. They were never "seen" like this.

Okay, that was a long enough post.

JediTricks
05-20-2007, 09:09 PM
I mentioned this before, but I think it bears repeating - at $20, what's wrong with including a main character that will make the set more enticing to casual consumers? Tantive IV BP is a great example here because it's 4 army builders for $20 plus you get a Vader that a lot of collectors dig and you can use for trade incentive or just throw it away and you're still getting 4 army builders for $5 a piece. The flip side of that coin is that the Vader has even kept me from buying a second version of this set, but since we hardcore collectors aren't the main buying audience for the brand, it's no surprise Hasbro is going to try to entice the casual collectors instead.


ps - the oil we talk about IS petroleum.

Tycho
05-20-2007, 10:44 PM
Entertainment Earth got out some 4-packs like this though:

Stormtroopers

Sandtrooper (I think. Not sure of the pauldron assortment, but it wasn't ideal)

Endor Rebel Soldiers

ALL white SA Clone trooper (AOTC) (they did them battle worn, too)

The officer sets were not brilliant because of the rank ratios though. It was probably economical in terms of the costs for the painting schemes though.


I'd wished they'd continued. I wonder how viable the idea is not that I've purchased my troops "the hard way" and many of us that have been around here for a long time have as well.

Phantom-like Menace
05-21-2007, 12:56 AM
I mentioned this before, but I think it bears repeating - at $20, what's wrong with including a main character that will make the set more enticing to casual consumers?

Well, I always try not to be one of those collectors who feels my niche needs are the needs of the average casual buyer, but do you really feel that main character is all that much of an enticement? The conventional argument for why we need main characters in every wave is so casual consumers can always get a Luke or a Yoda. Is there really such a dearth of these figures that a casual buyer needs to get them in these sets as well?

It's frustrating either way that Hasbro says army builder packs don't sell, but then they have these battlepacks which are one seemingly unmotivating figure's absence away from being exactly what we're asking for. I could be convinced that the extra figure is what sells them but it'll take some doing.


NOTE, this was kept to MOVIE ONLY figures.
Enough with th EU clones. Single card those ones. Most people will only get one maybe two of them so Hasbro can make the most money off them that way as opposed to a battle pack.

I actually figure this is the best place to put EU clones. The only real reason they're not as important to me as the movie clones is because the movie clones are found in large enough numbers to allow me to set up homogenous units while I've only found enough 5th Fleet Security, 442nd Siege Battalion or engineer clone to make a miscellaneous group. Add to that the fact that there is no longer any movie clone that we don't have and there's even more reason to go heavier EU with the battlepacks.

Tycho
05-21-2007, 02:08 AM
First, don't mistake my position: I am totally for new ways to army build and I may one day need them.

However, I see opportunities to contribute and though these won't support my position, I am answering your questions.


but do you really feel that main character is all that much of an enticement? The conventional argument for why we need main characters in every wave is so casual consumers can always get a Luke or a Yoda. Is there really such a dearth of these figures that a casual buyer needs to get them in these sets as well?

Gone from my local area's pegs:

Darth Vader - there used to be one at Target, maybe a few at Wal-Mart, but he's actually gone.

Chewie - not in any recent battle pack - but not available at retail anywhere at the moment.

Old Obi-Wan - only found in the Dagobah Battle Pack

Palpatine - actually gone from the pegs (even that horrid Endor Wave sculpt) and found only in the less-common Death Star Throne Room BP. Oh - the Order 66 Pack as well.

Yoda - 1 on the pegs at Target. Otherwise, you need the Order 66 pack or the Dagobah BP.

Qui-Gon - only in TPM Theed Hanger BP.

Darth Maul - ditto. His Saga repaint figure's disappeared.

Battle Droids - ditto.

Padme - her Illum figure is all but gone, as is her Mustafar figure.

Jango Fett - almost only in the Geonosis BP.

Dooku - definitely only in the Geonosis BP.

Super Battle Droid - ditto

Aayla Secura - ditto as well as the Fallucia BP. Twice? I guess they figure she's popular. (She was until Hasbro over-exposed her).


It's frustrating either way that Hasbro says army builder packs don't sell, but then they have these battlepacks which are one seemingly unmotivating figure's absence away from being exactly what we're asking for. I could be convinced that the extra figure is what sells them but it'll take some doing.

For parents who are asked to find one of the above characters for a newbie, it gets them to spend a little more than $7.14 and start kids collecting a little bit more - even army building. I know it's a pain in the butt for us regulars. However, I think it is one clear example of how Hasbro is trying to make products for both audiences.

JediTricks
05-21-2007, 05:28 PM
Entertainment Earth got out some 4-packs like this though:

Stormtroopers

Sandtrooper (I think. Not sure of the pauldron assortment, but it wasn't ideal)

Endor Rebel Soldiers

ALL white SA Clone trooper (AOTC) (they did them battle worn, too)

The officer sets were not brilliant because of the rank ratios though. It was probably economical in terms of the costs for the painting schemes though.

I'd wished they'd continued. I wonder how viable the idea is not that I've purchased my troops "the hard way" and many of us that have been around here for a long time have as well.The Stormtroopers were not EE, but the Fan Club. The Sandtrooper set had 4 differently colored pauldrons - white, gray, black, orange - on clean POTJ bodies. They did 4 kinds of Ep 2 Clone sets - white, multicolored, and dirty versions of both. The Clone set was double the price of the other sets. I don't think any of these sold as well as they were hoping.


Well, I always try not to be one of those collectors who feels my niche needs are the needs of the average casual buyer, but do you really feel that main character is all that much of an enticement? The conventional argument for why we need main characters in every wave is so casual consumers can always get a Luke or a Yoda. Is there really such a dearth of these figures that a casual buyer needs to get them in these sets as well?When I see kids at the store paying attention to the figures, it's always main characters, generally when the pegs are faced with nobodies the kids give a quick glance and move on. Casual collectors are drawn to the familiar, and it's important enough that they're putting big character pictures on all the TAC packaging, even the vehicles.


It's frustrating either way that Hasbro says army builder packs don't sell, but then they have these battlepacks which are one seemingly unmotivating figure's absence away from being exactly what we're asking for. I could be convinced that the extra figure is what sells them but it'll take some doing. IMO, if the Rebel Fleet Trooper had been a better figure, even the Vader pack-in wouldn't have stopped this thing from selling. But Hasbro's kind of right that army builder packs don't sell that well for extended lengths, EE still has army builder packs I believe.

Phantom-like Menace
05-23-2007, 02:31 AM
When I see kids at the store paying attention to the figures, it's always main characters, generally when the pegs are faced with nobodies the kids give a quick glance and move on. Casual collectors are drawn to the familiar, and it's important enough that they're putting big character pictures on all the TAC packaging, even the vehicles.

That's not really what I meant. You'll never catch me arguing that kids aren't the primary market and that they don't gravitate toward main characters. However, if you have a twenty dollar battlepack that has one main character and several other characters, a quick assessment of amount of allowance to number of main characters tells me if I were a kid I could get almost three main characters if I buy them single carded. Why would I spend three times as much for a third as many main characters?

Didn't Hasbro as much as say that some Battlepacks will be for kids and some will be set up for collectors? I'd like to actually see that.


EE still has army builder packs I believe.

Sure, but I'd say that's not really fair. I'm not in the same league as your Jedi Masters Sal, but I do consider myself an army builder. However, I'm not especially fond of buying online. The closest I've come to availing myself of EE's armies is the Republic Commandos, and I absolutely couldn't get anything like that anywhere else. In fact, the only time I've purchased army builders on line is on the rare occasion they've been impossible or almost impossible to find at brick and mortar, and even then I only purchased one just so I could at least have that many.

Tycho
05-23-2007, 09:40 AM
What's the aversion to online purchasing?

El Chuxter
05-23-2007, 10:52 AM
Generally higher costs, shipping, and the inability to see the figures beforehand.

jedi master sal
05-23-2007, 11:22 AM
That's not really what I meant. You'll never catch me arguing that kids aren't the primary market and that they don't gravitate toward main characters. However, if you have a twenty dollar battlepack that has one main character and several other characters, a quick assessment of amount of allowance to number of main characters tells me if I were a kid I could get almost three main characters if I buy them single carded. Why would I spend three times as much for a third as many main characters?

Didn't Hasbro as much as say that some Battlepacks will be for kids and some will be set up for collectors? I'd like to actually see that.



Sure, but I'd say that's not really fair. I'm not in the same league as your Jedi Masters Sal, but I do consider myself an army builder. However, I'm not especially fond of buying online. The closest I've come to availing myself of EE's armies is the Republic Commandos, and I absolutely couldn't get anything like that anywhere else. In fact, the only time I've purchased army builders on line is on the rare occasion they've been impossible or almost impossible to find at brick and mortar, and even then I only purchased one just so I could at least have that many.


Wow PLM, you're really shooting yourself in the foot then, not buying online. Considering gas is getting to be expensive, you can really save yourself a bundle by just ordering online. Shipping charges are equalling out to the tax and gas you'd spend on buying at brink and mortar, plus you have the satisfaction of knowing your going to get those figures, plus they are delivered to you. Yes, that takes the hunt away, but I really think the hunt is now over glorified. I don't like wasting gallons of gas on a fruitless toy run. Yes, if I'm out and stores are along the way, I'll stop. But gone are the days for me to do a huge toy run.

It's fine if you don't want to choose this option. It just makes it easier for those of us who do. I'm just trying to help you out.

If you haven't already, then you should try to build a network of fellow collectors. Be that here on SSG or anywhere.

It's tons easier when you are looking for others when you're out shopping and vice-versa. Less gas can be used if we all help each other out like this. Again the minimal cost of shipping compared to the gas wasted is relatively even. It's the assurance I'm getting the figs that tops it off.

If you've had bad experiences with certain onlnine retailers, then I can understand why you wouldn't want to go that route. But look around. There are many reputable online stores out there.

Good luck.
-Sal

jedi master sal
05-23-2007, 11:31 AM
Generally higher costs, shipping, and the inability to see the figures beforehand.

The costs are not that much higher. Most places I can find them for at retail prices and there isn't tax either with many online stores. So take that into account for the shipping as well.

I do agree that buying one or two figures might not be worth it as the shipping is a little high then. So try to order several thigns at once.

For instance, I never buy just one figure from Hasbrotoyshop. Shipping is $4+. However, if I order 4-5 figs, the shipping is still the same, so per unit the shipping is only a dollar. Also, we know what these figs will look like.

Now if you mean "condition of card," well yes that's a risk. Since I'm an opener it doesn't affect me. I will say that Hasbro has done an excellent job on all of my recent purchases in the last 6 months easy. SO that should be good news to you. No dinged up cards or overstuffed boxes (like ShopStarWars does).

KBs has done a good job at packing as well and I've had no complaints of the condition of items received.

If it means I pay $8 per figure (including the combined shipping) online then vs going out to stores and not finding anythign and wasting gas (again NOT seeing the figures either at all), then I choose online buying.

Really, the frustration it's saved me has been very helpful. I don't mind waiting a few days or even a week to get the figs. I know the order is in and I'm going to get what I ordered. It's not so sketchy as it was when we ordered through Amazon for instance, when they lost the TRU account.

Everyone willing, really compare how much you shop at brick and mortar and come away with nothing and what gas you wasted, compared to much less time and effort to surf the net to find toys and have them personally delivered to you. Even if it works out to be the same cost or slightly higher than brick and mortar, IMHO it's worth it.

Tycho
05-23-2007, 11:34 AM
I just wish I could get 2 lousy McFetts! I'm searching both the stores and online. I'll have them eventually, but this is ridiculous.

El Chuxter
05-23-2007, 11:49 AM
When I mentioned not being able to see the figures, I was referring more to paint. I'm pretty picky about paint, and Hasbro's been getting much, much worse about decent paint applications over the past year or so.

jedi master sal
05-23-2007, 03:07 PM
When I mentioned not being able to see the figures, I was referring more to paint. I'm pretty picky about paint, and Hasbro's been getting much, much worse about decent paint applications over the past year or so.

Ah ok, got you.

I'm strange like that too. Sicne I'm an opener, I want to have the nicest paint job possible for hero figs. Troops I don't worry about as much. I'll put better painted troopers in the front of a diorama or display. Any carded figures I have I not concerned about the paint app, as it's just a display of a MOMC fig. Not the actual figure itself.

Weird I know...

Tycho
05-23-2007, 03:18 PM
What you two have described is exactly how I feel. I especially worry about the paint apps on main human characters. They'll be opened and I don't want crossed eyes, etc.

I totally understand.

Phantom-like Menace
05-23-2007, 04:54 PM
Actually, I don't drive. I bike, so all I'm losing on the hunt is weight, and that's if I don't stop for fast food on the way home. Add to that the fact that it's exceedingly rare for me not to find a pretty good number of army builders. Off the top of my head I can think of Gree and the Clone Wars SA clone as being two of the very few army builders I haven't been able to find at least one of without going on line, and I really can't call Gree an army builder. Otherwise, the recent Saleucami pack has me about to go online even though I have found one. It was sheer dumb luck that I did.

So I really have no need to go online. Why do I prefer brick and mortar? Call me old fashioned, but I prefer to support the stores in my area and build rapport with employees. Plus it's not always that much easier to get things on line. How many times do these sites sell out of the items we're looking for? Otherwise I buy things on line all the time, just not army builders, especially since they tend to get bumped up in price to where I really can't afford to army build.

But this was the most important part of my post:


That's not really what I meant. You'll never catch me arguing that kids aren't the primary market and that they don't gravitate toward main characters. However, if you have a twenty dollar battlepack that has one main character and several other characters, a quick assessment of amount of allowance to number of main characters tells me if I were a kid I could get almost three main characters if I buy them single carded. Why would I spend three times as much for a third as many main characters?

Didn't Hasbro as much as say that some Battlepacks will be for kids and some will be set up for collectors? I'd like to actually see that.

JediTricks
05-24-2007, 03:38 AM
That's not really what I meant. You'll never catch me arguing that kids aren't the primary market and that they don't gravitate toward main characters. However, if you have a twenty dollar battlepack that has one main character and several other characters, a quick assessment of amount of allowance to number of main characters tells me if I were a kid I could get almost three main characters if I buy them single carded. Why would I spend three times as much for a third as many main characters?Ah, ok. I can only say that it's kids who like the "battle" concept - the few all-main-character packs they've done have not sold well IIRC, though most of those are really lame figures usually.


Didn't Hasbro as much as say that some Battlepacks will be for kids and some will be set up for collectors? I'd like to actually see that.That's what they think the Ilum Padme pack is, a collectors pack. :rolleyes:


Sure, but I'd say that's not really fair. I'm not in the same league as your Jedi Masters Sal, but I do consider myself an army builder. However, I'm not especially fond of buying online. The closest I've come to availing myself of EE's armies is the Republic Commandos, and I absolutely couldn't get anything like that anywhere else. In fact, the only time I've purchased army builders on line is on the rare occasion they've been impossible or almost impossible to find at brick and mortar, and even then I only purchased one just so I could at least have that many.Online is where you're going to find these things most likely, Hasbro and the brick-n-mortars seem to always drag their feet on these ideas for mass retail. I know where you're coming from, the online aspect drove me away from the sets as well even though I could always just drive down to EE and save on shipping - but I'm still not into it.



I just wish I could get 2 lousy McFetts! I'm searching both the stores and online. I'll have them eventually, but this is ridiculous.I have 2, wasn't even that hard, I found the second one in store and the first a friend found in store. They're also shipping more of them and the Stormtrooper (whom I haven't found in store yet except when I saw some guy grab the only 1 at opening - I can't fault him, he didn't grab all the hot figures, just the 1 he wanted).

jedi master sal
05-24-2007, 03:06 PM
...I have 2, wasn't even that hard, I found the second one in store and the first a friend found in store. They're also shipping more of them and the Stormtrooper (whom I haven't found in store yet except when I saw some guy grab the only 1 at opening - I can't fault him, he didn't grab all the hot figures, just the 1 he wanted).

JT, do you need a McTrooper? I've got a couple extras. I need some Rebel Honor Guards, so if you find some of those we can just trade. LMK. Otherwise, I'm willing to sell them to you.

Phantom-like Menace
05-24-2007, 03:20 PM
Ah, ok. I can only say that it's kids who like the "battle" concept - the few all-main-character packs they've done have not sold well IIRC, though most of those are really lame figures usually.

That's what they think the Ilum Padme pack is, a collectors pack. :rolleyes:

So where does that leave the discussion? I'm still of the opinion that the hero character in a pack of five figures isn't selling the set for children, and it's only detracting from the appeal for army builders. Now if the all-hero sets aren't selling well, that just futher seems to prove Hasbro is missing the boat by not marketing these for only collectors. I didn't hate the Ilum pack, but I waited until clearance to decide to get a second. Padme was a letdown and C-3PO/Artoo were meh, but I liked the Chameleon droids well enough to want four.

El Chuxter
05-24-2007, 03:32 PM
I must be in a minority here, because I thought the Padme was an awesome figure. Pre-posed, yes, but I'd rather have a pre-posed figure that looks good than one with ball joints that detract from the appearance of the figure.

Phantom-like Menace
05-24-2007, 11:39 PM
I must be in a minority here, because I thought the Padme was an awesome figure. Pre-posed, yes, but I'd rather have a pre-posed figure that looks good than one with ball joints that detract from the appearance of the figure.

I have to say I'm largely in agreement with you on that. I'm generally happy with the standard neck, arm, leg, and waste articulation with maybe elbow cuts and wrist swivels. Ball joints are for armored Star Wars figures (where the armor helps hide the ugly joints) and G.I. Joe. Otherwise, I disliked her softgoods and prefer molded capes and accessories, and her face seemed really off.

Tycho
05-25-2007, 03:31 AM
The Illum Padme? Her face WAS really off. Those evil eyebrows made her look like Cruella DeVille. Here's a trick. Take a permanent black marker to her and put spots on her white outfit and you have 101 less dalmations.

JediTricks
06-03-2007, 07:28 PM
JT, do you need a McTrooper? I've got a couple extras. I need some Rebel Honor Guards, so if you find some of those we can just trade. LMK. Otherwise, I'm willing to sell them to you.Yeah, I'm totally down with that. I sent you a PM.


So where does that leave the discussion? An impasse, I suppose. Hasbro's going to continue what they believe is right and the only way to change their minds is to convince casual collectors to change the behavior that makes Hasbro think that.


The Illum Padme? Her face WAS really off. Those evil eyebrows made her look like Cruella DeVille. Here's a trick. Take a permanent black marker to her and put spots on her white outfit and you have 101 less dalmations.HA! That's a really good one! :D Totally true too, that face is way off.