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View Full Version : Is the economic slowdown/recession affecting your Star Wars collecting?



Old Fossil
03-20-2008, 09:04 PM
Rising fuel, grocery, and utility costs are causing me to buy less Star Wars than usual. In the past month, I've bought only 3 items at retail: the Fett Legacy figure set, and 2 Saga Legends Scout Troopers.

Every time I think about picking up an extra Clone trooper, or ordering from HTS, or bidding on Ebay, I... don't. At Wal-Mart, I imagine that $6.63 for a Clone I already have multiples of could go for a couple of gallons of gas, instead; or, maybe a loaf of bread and a gallon of milk.

There just doesn't seem to be as much "free cash" for my hobby as there was a year ago, or even six months ago. My wife and I still have the same jobs we had a year ago, and have both gotten raises and even bonuses. But we are putting more and more into our gas tanks, our utility bills (our heating bills this winter were outrageous), and our weekly grocery run at Wal-Mart -- where, by the way, Borden whole milk is going for $5.35 a gallon. Needless to say, we get the Great Value brand and save a couple of dollars there.

I do not feel too bad that I can't be such a casual buyer/collector like I have been. I'd occasionally buy things I didn't need out of sheer boredom; and I still do, from time to time. But necessities are beginning to seriously curtail my SW buying. I wonder if this is a trend among the greater collecting community that may eventually noticeably affect sales of the product line itself (if it hasn't already).

Kidhuman
03-20-2008, 09:12 PM
If there was new product, it might.

UKWildcat
03-20-2008, 09:14 PM
Not at all.

Jedi_Kal-El
03-20-2008, 09:38 PM
Yes and no.

jedi master sal
03-20-2008, 09:54 PM
Well I had already planned on cutting my budget in half, so that doesn't matter so much, but in hindsight, it became almost a neccessity rather than a personal choice.

Now for this year at this point in a normal year I'd have spent $1500. With cutting it in half it should have been $750. However, due to a relative lack of product I think at most I've spent $400 and this includes Busts, Bust-ups, as well as Hasbro stuff.

Also, I just don't shop in stores that much anymore. I can buy most of what I want on the net. Often cheaper than retail, but if not when I factor in the gas and time wasted it still at the least evens out. But having the free time has helped as I'm now back in the gym working out trying to improve my health instead of putzing around on toy hunts.

I most definitely don't do any grand toy runs like I used to.


So to answer the thread question straight, yes it is affecting it.

Just not yet as bead as it could be because of the preventative measures I had already planned on.

bigbarada
03-20-2008, 10:07 PM
Not really that much, since there's nothing really compelling drawing me to the stores right now.

However, when the ROTJ wave starts hitting, I'll probably be making runs to stores on a more regular basis. But my closest Wal-Mart is about 10 miles away and the closest TRU that I've found is roughly a one-hour drive away. So I think I might just order my first case of Star Wars figures online in the fall, which will probably save me lots of gas and frustration.

I'm very fortunate now to live close to the center of a very small town (4300 people) and I work out of my apartment, so I can usually go days on end without driving my truck anywhere.

Jargo
03-20-2008, 10:18 PM
no. I always wait til these things hit clearance prices anyway. or get stuff loose via ebay. taking the time and shopping round finds me good prices. it also allows me to sift through the gazillion re-releases and rehashes and pick out exactly the right version of a character for my needs. But i've been shopping like this for two or three years anyway. There's zero point running round like a headless chicken looking for the latest thing. just sit tight and wait for the flotsam and jetsom to wash up on the shore. sort the chaff from the wheat. spot the wood among the trees. :yes:

I already posted that last part. I'm positive i have. and I'm positive i'd had a deja vu that time too. how freaky.:ninja:

InsaneJediGirl
03-20-2008, 10:37 PM
Yes and no. I dont really collect anymore besides the comics or books mainly, and I've held off recently on buying a $20 book or graphic novel in order to use that money for gas to get to school.

As for the action figures and anything else non-book related, I, like Dr.Daddypants , normally just buy them loose off ebay or find a clearance on a website. No use paying full price when you dont have to, and thats good advice in any economy :)

Rocketboy
03-20-2008, 10:59 PM
No, the crappy figures and general disinterest have killed my SW collecting.

Mad Slanted Powers
03-20-2008, 11:48 PM
Prices are rising for gas and for some groceries, but I don't use a lot of gas and my grocery bills aren't too high since I'm just buying for myself. Star Wars is the one thing that I spend a lot of money on. I've cut out other things since I bought my house. I don't buy as many CD's, DVD's or books, and I can't really afford to get some of the cool tech gadgets I might like to get, like an iPod, or to get a new game console and video games. I spent some money on some car work recently, and I might have to spend a lot more next time I take it in. My 5 year ARM on my house comes due at the end of the year, so what happens with that is more likely to affect me than anything else.

$5.35 for milk is outrageous. The price went up on what I usually buy, but I still don't pay more than $2.69 a gallon at this point. It's been a bit harder to get the orange juice for that price though.

So, I haven't stopped collecting. I'll think a little harder on some things like vehicles, but that's as much a space issue as it is a financial issue.

JediTricks
03-21-2008, 12:06 AM
No, mainly because I have pretty much everything and Hasbro's not releasing more until July. :ermm: I dunno what it'll be like by then though, but a decent amount of my money comes from European customers anyway so I doubt it.

El Chuxter
03-21-2008, 12:45 AM
I've cut back a lot, but, to be honest, I couldn't say it's the figures or the economy--more a combination of both.

Devil King
03-21-2008, 02:12 AM
No. Star Wars is the only thing effecting my Star Wars collecting.

But my G.I Joe collection is booming!

Jedi_Kal-El
03-21-2008, 02:17 AM
But my G.I Joe collection is booming!

Last time I was in Wal-Mart, I noticed the price on Joes went up about a little over a buck.

plasticfetish
03-21-2008, 04:05 AM
Rising fuel, grocery, and utility costs are causing me to buy less Star Wars than usual.We bought a house this year, and between needing to put much of what I once might have blown on "luxury" items like toys into working on the house, fuel costs have really kicked me in the a** this winter. For sure I've had to change my spending habits.


I wonder if this is a trend among the greater collecting community that may eventually noticeably affect sales of the product line itself (if it hasn't already).Retail sales are terrible right now in general, so it's very likely that Hasbro, as well as many other companies, are starting to see a slump in sales. But it's also likely that people will cut back on the big dollar impulse buys (things like a new TV, or maybe that expensive Blu-Ray player), and stay strong when it comes to the nickel-and-dime stuff. People with kids will still buy them toys, but maybe they'll be a little more frugal by cutting them off at a lower dollar amount.

I work for a company that sells a LOT of plastic products, and I can say from experience that the cost of oil has forced us to raise prices on quite a few things. That's been pretty much an industry wide phenomenon, so I'm not surprised to see toy prices go up. I'm also not going to be surprised when I hear that Hasbro's profits took a dip this year compared to last year.

jjreason
03-21-2008, 08:37 AM
I have cut my shopping for toys down to nearly nothing. The only times I specifically go looking for toys is when I'm conveniently in the area of a TRU store, or a specialty store that I like (though I must say, if I get sent on errands I still always choose a store like WM or Zellers that gives me an opportunity to peruse a toy aisle :D). Gone are the days when I'd jump in the car to "make the rounds". The cost of gas factors into this, but I think the biggest single factor is having found an affordable e-tailer that I trust and who treats me extremely well. I seriously have no NEED to search for anything - the figures come right to my door at TRU prices (and for this I am EXTREMELY grateful).

JON9000
03-21-2008, 12:49 PM
I think the legends line and battle packs have been a double edged sword in that it takes away an incentive to "buy now." I don't really feel any sense of urgency since I know these figures will eventually be multipacked, come out again in a cheaper format or when I have more cash!

That is why the AT-TE is a marketer's dream- it holds 20 clones! That'll suck a few clones off the pegs as children try to fill it with $120 worth of figs!

Bel-Cam Jos
03-21-2008, 08:06 PM
$5.35 for milk is outrageous. The price went up on what I usually buy, but I still don't pay more than $2.69 a gallon at this point. It's been a bit harder to get the orange juice for that price though.

So, I haven't stopped collecting. I'll think a little harder on some things like vehicles, but that's as much a space issue as it is a financial issue.Wow; $2.69 a gallon. Yeah, I remember December 2007, too. :cry:

I am hitting the space issue and desire issue more than cost. But the cost sure ain't helpin' none. I've never stopped collecting books (comics are just too darn many) and music, but figures and toys and trading cards (but... ) and posters have waxed and waned over the years.

Mr. JabbaJohnL
03-21-2008, 11:07 PM
As I don't pay the bills or anything around here, the economy hasn't really affected my own personal stuff (and hasn't seemed to do much on my parents). The fact that I've easily spent over $150 on Star Wars stuff in the last two months shows that I guess I'm not slowing down.

When I had a job last summer I found it easier (obviously) to buy more stuff, including army builders and more non-SW stuff, but now not so much. Damn, I need money.

TeeEye7
03-21-2008, 11:37 PM
Damn, I need money.

Don't we all? :yes:


....and no cussin'....

Jedi_Kal-El
03-22-2008, 12:14 AM
Damn, I need money.

Yes sir...


Don't we all? :yes:

...and yes sir! I always need more money, but then doesn't everybody. I'm not saying I need to be rich, but a little more than I have wouldn't hurt.

Lowly Bantha Cleaner
03-23-2008, 12:48 PM
Not really that much, since there's nothing really compelling drawing me to the stores right now.



Ditto.

The lack of enticing products has really saved me money as I am becoming very choosy of what I buy (due to lack of space, having multiples of many things).

One thing about the economy where I live. It is a rust belt area that saw very little growth during the boom times of the 1990's and the housing boom of earlier this decade. The area grew at a sluggish rate when areas out of state where booming.

At the same time, during economic downturns, the area is shielded from the worst of the worse. I hear reports from relatives out of state how they've noticed the probable recession, whether it is the lack of trucks on the road or housing slowdown. Where I live, all of that is not evident. In fact, there are local reports that foreclosure rates here in Western New York are a fraction of what is happening everywhere else, and the price of newly listed homes outpace those in other areas.

Blue2th
03-23-2008, 01:12 PM
The lack of product out there is saving me some money.
The over abundance of Legends and more Legends, plus anything new that hits the pegs is bought up by collectors and scalpers, there hasn't been anything to buy.
Sure I've bought the Sith Lords and Fett Evolutions, and a few single carded GI Joes, but that's pretty much it.
If I see anything new like the new sculpt SW and BSG Titaniums that are supposed to be hitting the pegs now I'll definitely be all over those.

It's spring though and like PF, I've been sinking alot of money and elbow grease into the house lately, so some days, I don't even get to hunt.

Tycho
03-23-2008, 03:42 PM
"No" would be my answer to the main topic question.

1) Hasbro's lack of choices and retailers' failure to stock them has slowed down my SW purchases.

I am buying for my future dioramas, not "collecting," and thus I ignore almost any resculpt, as well as items like The Force Unleashed and other tangents Hasbro might try and take us on (Droid Factory and what-not). As such, I don't require many figures they are releasing: "Vader," Obi-Wan, Gree, Kashyyyk Trooper - all of which I already have satisfactory versions of for my purposes.

Next, it is not worth the use of premium grade gasoline to make multiple trips to retailers for unsuccessful "acquisition missions." I ordered what I needed from HasbroToyShop.com and that was the end of it. I go to a brick-and-mortar toy retailer almost exclusively if I have another errand to run there - such as buying household supplies or groceries - otherwise, it must be along my way while traffic is bad or I'm really bored.

2) I barely collect any other toy line. So I'm not shopping for anything else really. I want the Hasbro repaint of Leader Class Megatron (I think) but might be able to order that from HTS as well. I get my Star Trek stuff from NewForce online. There's nothing else. I plan to go out to a retailer to LOOK at the Indiana Jones stuff, but I have no desire to own any of the products. - Well I may have desire, but I have self-discipline that first stems from the fact that I'll have no room for it anyway. I've dedicated the majority of my toy hobby to Star Wars, and so it shall remain. I could live with cutting back or quitting it all, as well - but I plan to keep all the stuff I have because I love that junk!

jedibear
03-27-2008, 02:49 AM
"No" would be my answer to the main topic question.

1) Hasbro's lack of choices and retailers' failure to stock them has slowed down my SW purchases.



That sums it up for me...we still have yet to see ANY of the new 08 basic figures up here...but considering how living expenses (gas. heat, etc) have really jumped this winter...cutting back would be happening anyway...

bobafrett
03-27-2008, 11:42 AM
If it wasn't for the tough economic times, it would certainly be my upcoming wedding. Since we are trying to handle all the money for our wedding out of our own pockets, I have to curb my desire to get/own/purchase one of every figure, no matter how lame or stiff looking they may be (anyone remember the 3PO from the vintage series selling for around $10?).

The Wedding cake, which I already have paid in full, ran a cool $240, the hall rental w/ cash bar, except soda, which we are paying for is $250. Then the food at $6.75 a person times about 100 people, well you can do the math, then we still need a photographer, which most professional places are asking about a grand, so we are still shopping for someone. Then I have to get a suit, plus get my son a suit, plus ties for my groomsmen, not to mention a little gift for each one of which there are at least 4. This is on top of the decorations which we have already purchased, and some we have yet to buy. At least the DJ will be free, since he is my fiance's cousin, and he owes her around $5,000.00. He better be good, or else.

Yep, oh and then my little lady seems to notice everytime I make another SW purchase. AY Ya Ya.

jedi master sal
03-27-2008, 03:39 PM
...Yep, oh and then my little lady seems to notice everytime I make another SW purchase. AY Ya Ya.

Isn't that always the way it is...


Mine isn't so bad with this. She's with me when I get it, so it's not a surprise to her. Besides, she's good for getting the techie stuff (iPod, digital camera, digital video camera, etc.) So my purchases while many and often as usually much smaller than her few but often expensive purchases.

It works out enough. Though we both are cutting back.

Also with the just announced probability of gas going up another 75 cents per gallon by memorial day, I can say it's going to be much easier to either pass on stuff or just order it straight from the net. Bad for local brick and mortar stores yes, but much easier on my wallet.

Maradona
03-27-2008, 04:41 PM
What economic slowdown/recession? The economy is booming!

jedi master sal
03-27-2008, 05:33 PM
What economic slowdown/recession? The economy is booming!

What pot are you smoking and can I have some, j/k...

Maradona
03-27-2008, 06:04 PM
What pot are you smoking and can I have some, j/k...

Maybe THAT would boost our sterling economy...j/k

But I can seriously say that it's not difficult to envision an upcoming time when basic necessities make this youth extending hobby of ours a thing of the past. I'm not a home owner and I live only 4 miles from work, but we all live "in a symbiote circle," right? What happens to some of us will affect us all.

...and it's got to be a negative sign when people start quoting from episode 1:laugh:

Mad Slanted Powers
03-27-2008, 07:52 PM
If it wasn't for the tough economic times, it would certainly be my upcoming wedding. Since we are trying to handle all the money for our wedding out of our own pockets, I have to curb my desire to get/own/purchase one of every figure, no matter how lame or stiff looking they may be (anyone remember the 3PO from the vintage series selling for around $10?).

The Wedding cake, which I already have paid in full, ran a cool $240, the hall rental w/ cash bar, except soda, which we are paying for is $250. Then the food at $6.75 a person times about 100 people, well you can do the math, then we still need a photographer, which most professional places are asking about a grand, so we are still shopping for someone. Then I have to get a suit, plus get my son a suit, plus ties for my groomsmen, not to mention a little gift for each one of which there are at least 4. This is on top of the decorations which we have already purchased, and some we have yet to buy. At least the DJ will be free, since he is my fiance's cousin, and he owes her around $5,000.00. He better be good, or else.

Yep, oh and then my little lady seems to notice everytime I make another SW purchase. AY Ya Ya.My parents just went down to the courthouse and got married. Much cheaper meesa thinks.

DarthQuack
03-27-2008, 08:08 PM
The economy definitely has put a hampering all what I spend on collecting wise in general, that and I haven't liked much of what I've seen lately to be honest...my collecting habits come now and then....if I was making good enough money I'd be collecting all the time, but until that happens....I think not.

El Chuxter
03-28-2008, 02:59 PM
I wonder if Hasbro is pooping bricks right now. Going almost a year with no figures to interest a lot of collectors is going to make it much easier for said collectors to pass on stuff in September.

mtriv73
03-28-2008, 03:18 PM
I buy more online rather than going looking, but I think that's more a matter of frustration with retail and lack of time.

Having a 7 month old has put a little crimp in the buying. I'm just getting one of each comic-pack now rather than 2 and I'm not buying as many multiples of basic figures. I've also passed on a couple target exclusives (Aayla starfighter and wookies vs. stormtroopers battle pack.) I don't think I passed on these for $ reasons though. They just didn't "do it" for me.

Blue2th
03-28-2008, 03:39 PM
You'd think Hasbro would at least ramp up production of the Titaniums to give us something to buy that we don't already have.

I think retail has been ordering less because we have been buying less. Maybe they finally realized the "Legends" aren't moving and there aren't enough Force Unleashed to go around. Not much of the re-issued TAC with stands are moving in my area either.

El Chuxter
04-21-2008, 05:42 PM
I'm really hoping Hasbro will change their online store policies. Gas prices have now reached the point where they're really biting into my purchasing.

The town I live in has a Wal-Mart (which sucks, and which we don't shop at for anything other than toys), a K-Mart (which is worse than the Wal-Mart), a Kohl's, and a couple of grocery stores. A Best Buy is opening soon.

The nearest Target is about fifteen miles south. That city has a Wal-Mart and one of the few remaining KB's as well. And a ghetto K-Mart that's totally isolated from the other stores and not worth going to.

Going southwest, I hit a Target in about 25 miles (though it's all freeway, and actually takes less time to get to). Keep going another five miles, and there's another Target, a Wal-Mart, and a Toys R Us.

West, there's a Target and TRU about 20 miles out. A Wal-Mart a mile or two beyond that, and another Target five miles past the WM.

West or southwest, keep going far enough and you're in the more densely populated areas of the Inland Empire, which lead to the OC and LA areas. Plenty of Targets and Wal-Marts and a good selection of TRU's. However, you're talking about a 30-mile or more drive just to get there.

East, there's a ten-mile stretch encompassing two Targets, a Wal-Mart, and a Toys R Us. Unfortunately, it's about forty miles away.

I'm working from a home office now, and my wife works only about seven miles west of here. In other words, there's one mediocre Wal-Mart that hardly ever restocks as far as my options go under normal circumstances. Until about a year ago, I was working in the town to the south, going to that WM and Target almost daily.

In other words, it's not so much that I wouldn't buy the stuff if I could find it, but I can't justify driving into one of the towns to look unless I'm going there anyway. Which normally means the weekend, when there's practically nothing to be had since everyone else has gotten to it already. Even south, an approximate 30-mile round trip, is about 1.5 gallons of gas, or at least $5.70.

Most online stores charge outrageous shipping on top of grossly inflated prices. HTS is more reasonable, but there's no way to order anything but the small handful of toys that are in stock. And toysrus.com is crappy about store exclusives... though at least they're better than target.com and walmart.com, who usually don't even list them.

So, yeah, the economic clusterbang has officially gotten to my toy purchases.

stillakid
04-21-2008, 07:06 PM
Way back in the day, when gas was a mere $1.39 a gallon, I'd think nothing of driving to stores forty-five minutes away and hitting every other store that was on the way.

Now? Not a chance and I'll really only stop at Target or TRU IF I'm driving near them for something else. It is so much cheaper to order cases from Entertainment Earth or pay the shipping from Hasbro Toy Shop than it is to drive around HOPING to find figures on the pegs.

I'll still pick up army builder types when the spirit moves me, but I'm not getting quite as many of some as I might have in the past.

And while I'm definitely getting the Deluxe Falcon, cost is definitely one of the factors that will have me thinking twice (or thrice) about the AT-TE.

Mad Slanted Powers
04-21-2008, 08:34 PM
I don't check as much after work due to the traffic as much as the gas. It's not much of a commute compared to what people face in big cities, but after work I just don't feel like going to the other side of town to track down something that I'll likely find on the weekend anyway. I don't miss too much. I can pay a bit extra on eBay for the few that I miss out on. Last year I got a few cases from EE since I was able to get cases with no duplicates except for army builders.

Bellingham has a Wal-Mart, Target, K-Mart and two Fred Meyers. There is a Kohl's, but I rarely check there. The Bellingham TRU closed in 2006. There might be a few other places that have a few figures but those are the only ones I check. I actually don't check K-Mart much anymore because they rarely have anything. That kind of started with ROTS when none of the basic figures were there when all the other stores were getting them.

The Mt. Vernon/Burlington area is about 30 miles away and has a Target, Wal-Mart, K-Mart and Fred Meyer and a specialty shop. I used to go down a bit more in my early collecting days to get caught up on the POTF2 that I missed. About the only thing I get there anymore if I go there might be some of the Star Wars comic collections that I don't yet have. There used to be a KB down there as well as in Bellingham, but both are gone now. I might go down there a handful of times a year now.

Old Fossil
02-24-2009, 01:10 PM
Well here we are a year later, and things are looking, well... worse.

Can't say I'm spending much differently than I was when I started this thread. Still buying conservatively at stores, and I seldom ever buy any SW online anymore due to high shipping costs.

But I worry more now. With bad economic news coming every day it is not as easy to enjoy spending money on collectible toys. There are other reasons for my SW spending being generally reduced (lack of space, mainly), but the sorry state of our economy weighs heavily on my mind when I'm looking at rows of $13 comic packs or $7 single carded figures.

More of our money has been going into savings, and some into silver coins.

bobafrett
02-24-2009, 01:43 PM
I hear that. I went to Wal-Mart today, and had a hard time justifying purchasing the GH Escape from Mos Eisley set, but I did. Now I regret somewhat buying it, as money will be tight for some time to come.

Mr. JabbaJohnL
02-24-2009, 01:47 PM
I could pretty much repost what I said last year. I'm not sure how or if it's affected my parents but they're both working (my mom not really because she needs to, but she wanted to help out regardless of the economy). My summer job/graduation present money is finally dwindling, but thankfully I just got a tax rebate check, so that will hopefully tide me over for the next two months until I can (hopefully) get a job. Plus, there looks to be another summer "hiatus" in figure releases (even though there is still more than enough stuff to buy - the Rancor, the Walmart comic packs, etc.). I just hope they won't be passing on hiring people looking only for summer employment in favor of more long-term employees.

bigbarada
02-24-2009, 02:02 PM
My spending has definitely slowed down and that's due to three factors:

1. since I do most of my work on a freelance basis, my income is dependent on getting a lot of small jobs. Unfortunately, many of those small jobs have dried up, so my income has depleted significantly. The economy might be to blame there, since people just have less income to throw around and a website or a fancy logo would be considered expendable luxuries when you're just struggling to stay in business.

2. the price increase of the figures has discouraged me from buying new toys. Which hasn't normally been a deterrent in the past, but a lot of that has to do with reason #3...

3. Hasbro is just not making figures that I am all that interested in. I understand that Clone Wars is big right now and they need to give equal time to the Prequels, but all I'm interested in is figures from the OT, primarily ROTJ. I have no problem paying increased prices if I really want the figure (2007's VTAC Bossk and IG-88 are excellent examples of that); but the character choices for the last few waves have just been pretty "blah" to me.

For instance, I would have happily paid $7.50 for a super-articulated resculpt of Ponda Baba or a Cantina Band Member, rather than the all-new figures of Terminal Man or Brainiac that we got.

El Chuxter
02-24-2009, 02:44 PM
I'm finding less freelance work as well, and what I'm getting isn't especially worthwhile (like a guy who wants his website updated and simply won't tell me what it is he wants--it'll probably not be worth whatever I make from it). And $8 for figures is insane unless they make Teek already.

Blue2th
02-24-2009, 03:20 PM
I've curbed my spending.

GI Joe really hasn't put out anything that I want anymore. I look at the vehicles and how rediculous they really are (well now anyways in 2009) haven't bought any of those. Even passed on the Resolute comic packs. Though I did buy the carded Cobra was my last figure. That's pretty much it for me I've decided.

I still continue to buy at least one each of the Clone Wars and Legacy figures (depending on which BAD sometimes) but no repaints or Legends (except one Super BD without chest holes) and any new dies for Titanium.



Can't really think of any toys I would buy in quantity in the next few months.
Occasional SW figure and Titanium, maybe a new ship or two. Till Star Trek, and then it'll only be some of the AA ships and the small HW ones.

Ando
02-24-2009, 05:21 PM
I've slowed down a lot myself.

Mostly because my Grand Army is just about complete and all that is left are the unreleased vehicles. After the pilot/gunship turret BP, Republic Fighter Tank and the Turbo Tank, and maybe a few Jedi and Astromechs here and there, there's not much left that I think I'll want.

I will make an exception for a rescaled/resculpted Outrider and SA Dash Rendar if/when they ever do that.

We're also running low on space to store most of my toys and I would like to shift into the Galactic Heroes and other collectibles, not to mention save more of my money for when I see something I REALLY want like I did 2 weeks ago and saw the Benchmade Infidel 3300BK. I already have a standard 3300, but I really liked that black blade and it would have been awesome to have gotten it when I saw it instead of having to pass for the time being.

Ji'dai
02-24-2009, 05:41 PM
When gas prices go up I'm less likely to go shopping so I buy less. Coupled with an overall loss of interest in Star Wars and rising retail prices I don't collect as much as I used to do.

Since Indiana Jones is cancelled, I'll save quite a bit of money there.

It's not difficult to rack up hundreds of dollars on LEGO on just a handful of sets. So I try to spread those purchases out over the year

I don't see myself collecting any of the big summer movie toy lines this year either.

plasticfetish
02-24-2009, 07:56 PM
It's weird and sort of lame to quote myself, but...


We bought a house this year, and between needing to put much of what I once might have blown on "luxury" items like toys into working on the house, fuel costs have really kicked me in the a** this winter. For sure I've had to change my spending habits.I'm still spending the majority of whatever "extra" money I once had on our house, but I've been doing that for a while now, so it's really nothing new or surprising. Fuel prices (heating oil... yeah, old house w/ an old heater) were much lower this winter, but this was the worst winter that Oregon has seen in 40 years, so it still kicked my a**.

After fuel, electricity, tire chains, and every other f'ing thing, there's not much left for Hasbro.


Retail sales are terrible right now in general, so it's very likely that Hasbro, as well as many other companies, are starting to see a slump in sales. But it's also likely that people will cut back on the big dollar impulse buys (things like a new TV, or maybe that expensive Blu-Ray player), and stay strong when it comes to the nickel-and-dime stuff. People with kids will still buy them toys, but maybe they'll be a little more frugal by cutting them off at a lower dollar amount.As I understand it, Hasbro did well enough, but the economy has hurt them. Their sales aren't what they've been in the past, and I can only see that getting worse.


I work for a company that sells a LOT of plastic products, and I can say from experience that the cost of oil has forced us to raise prices on quite a few things. That's been pretty much an industry wide phenomenon, so I'm not surprised to see toy prices go up. I'm also not going to be surprised when I hear that Hasbro's profits took a dip this year compared to last year.It's funny, but while there have been some continued increases in production costs, we're seeing some companies (vendors) that are willing lower or freeze prices, so as not to scare away customers. It's a bad time to take it all out on the consumer by boosting your prices in order to try to make the same kind of profit that you were making before the economic slowdown.

Which is why I'm absolutely f***ing stunned that Hasbro has decided to raise prices like they have. I know that it's not just Hasbro, and that toy prices have gone up everywhere, but I'm seeing figures hanging there and hanging there and hanging there, next to those $7.99 price signs, and I'm wondering why they thought it was a good idea.

I'm gonna predict that this next year will be horrible for companies like Hasbro and Mattel, unless they start focusing on producing things that are well made, and a bargain. Hasbro will get a boost from their new Marvel 4-inch line, but after the initial thrill has worn off, and the kids (or their parents) decide that $8 per figure is too much to spend, things will slump. The hard-core collectors will stay with it, but most people will pick-and-choose, and avoid the kind of expensive impulse buying that we all enjoyed a few years ago.

Bel-Cam Jos
02-24-2009, 08:26 PM
I have been torn on the Organa couple Legacy figures, but only figure I've bought in the stores recently was the CW Padme (it's not bad). I'm with BB's #3 comment (I'd go with "eh" over "blah," but they serve the same purpose).

Over the years, only things I've never stopped in SW collecting:
- books (novels, as I have let several Visual Guide-type books pass, and sadly have had to pass on the awesome-but-too-pricey Chronicles type ones [although, if I could find a decently-priced Art of R.McQ. I'd seriously consider that one])
- posters (but I usually just get one from each film/event)
- music (since there's been nothing worthwhile since 2003, if you discount the ROTS and CW soundtracks)
- updated sizes :rolleyes: clothing (again, I'm selective, not completist at all)

Toys are getting less of an interest. Must be getting... OLDER? :eek: :p

Maradona
02-24-2009, 08:47 PM
Not only have I stopped troop building, I've also been waaaaay more selective on what I buy. For me as a teacher, the acronym NCLB stands for No Child Left Behind, but for me as collector, it stood for No Clone Left Behind. I used to regularly leave Targets and TRUs armed with several figures. No longer.

I still have my regular pay, but I feel weird spending given the uncertainty that surrounds us. Plastic just doesn't have the pull it once had for me...

TeeEye7
02-24-2009, 09:21 PM
I've not yet purchased a single thing since my bobble head Yoda and Jawa at Christmas.

Kidhuman
02-24-2009, 09:51 PM
I havent changed anything really. Luckily the field of work I do doesnt sem affected by the economy.

Mr. JabbaJohnL
02-24-2009, 10:17 PM
As I understand it, Hasbro did well enough, but the economy has hurt them. Their sales aren't what they've been in the past, and I can only see that getting worse.
Is that across all their lines? Star Wars in general (not just Hasbro, but I figure they were a big chunk of it) had the most profitable year in its entire 31-year history.


Which is why I'm absolutely f***ing stunned that Hasbro has decided to raise prices like they have. I know that it's not just Hasbro, and that toy prices have gone up everywhere, but I'm seeing figures hanging there and hanging there and hanging there, next to those $7.99 price signs, and I'm wondering why they thought it was a good idea.
They were $7.99 at Target and TRU last year for a while before going back down to $6.99, now they're just back up after the New Year. I'm not sure the pricetag really hurts it that much . . . these figures are often approaching or even surpassing VOTC quality (including most, if not all, of wave 5) and people happily paid $9.99 for that.

figrin bran
02-24-2009, 10:52 PM
Although my financial situation has not worsened (not really improved either), the higher price tag on figures has forced me to abandon army building as well as getting extras to keep carded and not to mention extras for custom fodder.

At 6.99 I would've bought around 4 CW Clones w. space gear and would've kept on buying the regular CW clones.

Maradona
02-24-2009, 11:27 PM
At 6.99 I would've bought around 4 CW Clones w. space gear and would've kept on buying the regular CW clones.

I hear you. There were days when I would have bought more as well. But at $8.79 (local Target pricing), I refuse to do so on principle. This stand is not only on SW lines, but the rest of my toy collecting as well. In the grand scheme of things, $2 is not a huge difference. But recall that not so long ago the figures were around $4.99 and I would get figures that I didn't like much for the sake of completion. Selectivity due to pricing has become the order of the day, while completionism has been relegated.

bigbarada
02-24-2009, 11:29 PM
I'm not sure the pricetag really hurts it that much . . . these figures are often approaching or even surpassing VOTC quality (including most, if not all, of wave 5) and people happily paid $9.99 for that.

I wouldn't have a problem paying $10 a figure, but nothing in wave 5 was even on my radar as far as figures I actually wanted. That's not saying that they're not great figures, but they're nothing for me to get excited about. Maybe 2 years ago I would have bought them on quality alone, but not anymore.

I'm not building Cantina, "Purchase of the Droids" or Detention Block dioramas, so there's nothing in this wave that I need.

Tycho
02-25-2009, 12:17 AM
I'm building all those scenes BigB, so I love the new figures of Wioslea, Trinto & Dice, and Brainiac, as well as the WED Septoid Droid and Jawa.

My old Han and Luke Troopers suffice though, and the EU Space Trooper figures might due for me, too - but I still have to see the new Space Troopers in person before I make up my mind completely about those.

plasticfetish
02-25-2009, 01:55 AM
Is that across all their lines? Star Wars in general (not just Hasbro, but I figure they were a big chunk of it) had the most profitable year in its entire 31-year history.Here's a good transcript (http://seekingalpha.com/article/119418-hasbro-inc-q4-2008-earnings-call-transcript?source=bnet) of their Q4 2008 Earnings Call. Read the Q&A stuff about costs near the middle. Actually... there's a lot of interesting things in there.

Brands like Star Wars performed very well, and that's a testament to the fact that dedicated fans of the line are willing to stick with them if they continue to deliver a quality product. The general idea, as I read it, was that as a company Hasbro did well. It wasn't the kind of year that they might have wanted, but all things considered, it was good. The first 3/4s were strong, and then like everyone else, they ate it during the holiday season. They did some smart maneuvering to lessen the impact of a really crummy 4th quarter, but it wasn't a good Christmas for them.


They were $7.99 at Target and TRU last year for a while before going back down to $6.99, now they're just back up after the New Year. I'm not sure the price tag really hurts it that much . . . these figures are often approaching or even surpassing VOTC quality (including most, if not all, of wave 5) and people happily paid $9.99 for that.I've seen basic figures going for as much as $8.49, which is not the average, but it's for sure not the kind of trend that I'd predict. I'd also add the word "some" when you say "people happily paid $9.99 for that." I wasn't thrilled by the price, and skipped much of the second bath of VOTC figures, and hardly bought any that weren't on clearance.

To say, "Well, they've gone for that much before," and to call that a reason, is like saying, "Well, you've been mugged before." Right now in particular, we need to keep sight of value vs. price, and really be critical of what we're being asked to pay for something that, in all honesty, costs very little to produce. I'd look at $7.99 for a basic figure today, and compare that to $5.99 for a basic figure from the ROTS line, and wonder if we're really getting $2 more in quality just a few years later.

To bring this back on topic... all I'm saying, is that it's a bad time to raise prices. Trying to compensate for higher production costs is one thing, but it seems to me that Hasbro is operating on an assumption that just because their most profitable lines like Star Wars, Transformers, or Marvel did well in the recent past, that they'll continue to do well regardless of the economy.

Bel-Cam Jos
03-01-2009, 10:37 AM
Since I had a doctor's follow-up appointment, which is about 15-20 miles away, I figured (pun less intended these days than before) I'd stop at a couple stores to look for some SW stuff (and I had some books coupons). My haul:

- 2 packs of new SW Galaxy 4 series trading cards (got one foil insert)
- 3 figures (Bail and Breha, new Spacetrooper)
- a young adult book (Clone Wars: Grievous Attacks!)
- a Lego set (Assassin droids battle pack)

Total cost (including some other non-SW stuff) came to around $70, which should whet my appetite for the forseeable future (minus the normal books buying when those are released, and a few more card packs here or there).

Old Fossil
03-01-2009, 12:49 PM
Anybody here keep up with Hasbro's recent stock trend? I don't know where to begin looking, and was just curious how it has performed with the overall downturns in the last month.

bigbarada
03-01-2009, 01:27 PM
Anybody here keep up with Hasbro's recent stock trend? I don't know where to begin looking, and was just curious how it has performed with the overall downturns in the last month.

I'm not sure, but I did hear Hasbro's name mentioned on the news the other day when they were talking about companies that were actually doing really well in this recession.

pbarnard
03-01-2009, 05:29 PM
Hasbro's down, but it could be doing a lot worse. They don't get affected by retail declines, unless retail doesn't order new inventory. Since retailers made their orders, just didn't make anything off of it, Hasbro was fine since Hasbro had to get paid. Course, future orders and credit as well as capital investment (tooling, factories, paint and paint application R&D) maybe affected in the long term.

This isn't affecting my Star Wars collecting as much because my job is stable, I have my "allowance" and I know what I'm aiming for to begin with. Price rises worry me because I've got my set, so that means trying to find ways to wait a month and buy "waves" as opposed to piecemeal for carded figures while doing piecemeal for the comic packs.

I'm really starting to feel it from the GI Joe side for me, which is the only other thing outside of Star Wars ornaments and books that I buy. And it's not that I'm buying the new figs, that much. It's maintaining the o-ring figures, but the newer not the older o-ring figures. UGH.

Old Fossil
11-04-2009, 12:06 PM
...and I'm buying less and less Star Wars. About 1/2 of that is because I haven't found anything new since the TPM wave in September, but part of me (the other 1/2) is glad, since I don't really have the extra cash to spend on SW collecting.

Honestly, it's wierd. I was on a Mego kick for a while, but haven't made any major ($20+) purchases in over a month. I'm not sure where my money is going. I know gas and groceries are all up, as are utilities. Maybe I'm just more conscious of my spending these days than before.

I was for a while earlier this year buying "junk" silver, that is, pre-1965 US silver coins; but the price trend upward in the last couple months is beginning to price me out of that, and I've not bought any silver since August.

I don't forsee buying any vehicles, and am on the fence regarding the WM exclusive Dewback. There are only two or three figures out of the coming waves (including the ROTJ wave, which I have not seen in person as yet) that I plan to buy. A year or so ago, I'd buy an entire wave just to complete the BAD. Not anymore. And no more army-building for me. I bought four Scout Troopers from the TPM wave, and I can't justify any more of any kind of trooper.

pbarnard
11-04-2009, 12:22 PM
I made a change a long time ago, back when gas was $4 plus. I decided that I would only bike to figure runs or buy online large quantities to cut on total gas used. Up until the accident in september, if it was 1 gallon of liquid and a few other items, I'd bike to the grocery store. The only time I drove was for quantities more than that and to Mass on Sundays. With my wife almost exclusively taking the bus to work, we only refill our gass about once every 2 months except when we rarely travel out of town.

I think the slow down affected retailers ordering patterns. They hedged that no one would have money for toys, so didn't restock. Of course, Hasbro laying the bombs of Yarna, Breha, and Bail didn't help so they never sold through a wave completely. I just recently saw the signs of a new wave, having been retail excluded from three until recently.

Mad Slanted Powers
11-04-2009, 07:54 PM
I've been a little less likely to buy vehicles lately, but that has as much to do with space as economics. I've not really experienced much of a recession, even though I didn't get a raise or bonus at the end of last year, and had my hours reduced for a good part of this year. I think part of it is a little bit less spending Star Wars due to lack of product to buy, but I also think I'm not spending as much on other things. I've bought less music, DVDs and books.

mtriv73
11-04-2009, 08:05 PM
Yes, but only because it's making things harder to find. I'd be willing to shell out a lot more money (now that we no longer have 2 mortgages) but am finding nothing to spend it on because of some perceived pull back in spending. So the less they have out there the less I'm buying. It's all a viscious cycle that I hope Hasbro will break soon by getting some product to retail.

Kidhuman
11-07-2009, 10:31 AM
Not really.

JimJamBonds
11-07-2009, 10:33 AM
Since I don't' collect the slowdown hasn't effected my collection.