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Darth Duranium
09-05-2008, 09:09 PM
SSG: With Titanium Series, could you fill us in on how decisions are made as to which new designs are taken to production, and how large a run that item may get? Are there Titaniums that Hasbro had to pass on due to budgetary issues (we know the Battlestar Galactic classic Basestar is one that you guys said wasn't feasible)? Should we expect to see more and more plastic used in place of metal on future releases? Any "favorites" and "most disappointing" Titaniums for the designers you guys might be willing to share?
Hasbro: Our criteria has changed somewhat over the past couple years, in order to get more newer (and often niche) vehicles into the lineup. The designs are selected by our team here, suggested to Lucasfilm, and the final lineup is a combination of both group's ideas on new ships. The waves are structured somewhat like basic figures, with the more iconic figures carrying forward from wave to wave and the more obscure vehicles (which describes many of the newly tooled ships) getting more limited runs confined to a single wave only. It's been only recently that we have been "re-releasing" classic ships like the Millennium Falcon; prior to that pretty much everything ran for a short time and then disappeared. The same can be said for the "fleet" approach (X-Wings, Y-Wings, etc) in an attempt to keep classics out there but provide some newness for collectors by delivering meaningful repaints. There are no ships we have had to pass on because of budgetary issues, and do not see the amount of metal vs. plastic changing from the current balance. Among favorites are the new X-Wing and the Cloud Car and MTT (long overdue!). There are a couple of disappointments for us. The first is that it's just impossible given the nature of the collection to work in a consistent scale. That's just the nature of the beast since we do not have any other options for alternate sizes/scales/price points in Titanium. A second one would be the inherent limitations of die-cast in getting the same level of detail and precision that we are so accustomed to achieving with plastic. We have learned a lot about working with the medium, however, and think that our current and upcoming ships keep getting better and better.

Thanks again JT for putting the questions to Hasbro. Another SSG TS exclusive.

I have to laugh... they always seem to dance around the more important questions and disregard lots of stuff. Ah well, they are marketing/PR types. At least they gave a lengthy response...

I'm surprised that Lucasfilm has such a strong influence into the TS selection... I guess Hasbro's telling us that they changed their recent lineup plans (like Mystery Phantom Wave 4 & the Outrider) 'cuz LFC wanted to flog... er, cross-promote all their new products, including the Force Unreleased game and TCW... a shotgun wedding.

And where's our frakkin' Basestar?

I distinctly remember Hasbro saying they couldn't do a Basestar at the Titanium "price point", and went on to point out that they were too complex, labour-intensive, and required too much tooling for either the classic or 2003 version. Amnesia, I guess.

Hasbro's clearly putting less metal into most of the newer ships and they're ok with that... but I will give them credit for not producing that many straight retreads ("re-releases")... don't know how meaningful yet another Y-Wing or ARC fighter is, though.

Sounds like they're stoked about finally releasing the Galoob MTT... no mention of the wheeled Bongo. I like the Cloud Car and new X-Wing, too.

I was more interested in their all-time favourite and most disappointing... another 50% answer and sales pitch.

Someone on RS actually calculated the comparative scale of the TS ships to their originals... I think that only a tiny handful are in the same relative scale.
But what else could they do inside TS's parameters? Sounds like they're really sad that the market won't sustain the MM and the AF/Ultra scales.

Interesting that diecast is so much more difficult to work with than plastic... maybe the zamac expert Sicqnus can shed some light on it. Seems to me that Galoob's diecast ships were as least as good, 10 years ago.

Maybe it's trickier than it seems, with the tools and labour available for the ships they now want to make...

Time to think up some new TS questions...

TooWanBee
09-05-2008, 11:53 PM
Thank you so much for posting this.

Darth Duranium
09-06-2008, 03:12 PM
From mousedroid:

Question #1
Dear Hasbro,
In the most recent release of the Titanium Series, the otherwise-wonderful TIE Defender has a massive flaw - a permanently attached stand. I'm wondering why this was done, considering both that all other Titaniums have not had this, plus it severely limits the fun and playability of the vehicle, especially for kids?
Thanks
Darth Windu

HASBRO REPLY:
The issue is one of safety. If we left the back of the ship open, there would be a possibility that the vehicle could stand up and be stable on the floor when the third wing is opened. This would leave the wings pointing up, which would be a projection hazard (for example, if someone stepped on it). We could not move forward with the vehicle until this was solved, and the solution was to make sure that the stand was permanently attached to prevent this. There was no other way, unfortunately, to deliver this otherwise very cool vehicle in the interest of safety.

cloneemperor
09-06-2008, 10:32 PM
That makes a lot of sense to me, because my wife and I have stepped on enough of our son's toys, so I can understand why they did it.

Darth Windu
09-07-2008, 06:17 AM
Whilst I fully understand where they're coming from, it's quite odd considering that the all-metal TIE Interceptor can be even more dangerous for the same reason.

cloneemperor
09-07-2008, 10:16 AM
I thought about that too, but then I realized what they meant when they said "stable on the floor". The TIE Interceptor can stand on it's end, but it is relatively easy to knock it over with a slight nudge. The TIE Defender, on the other hand, if stood on it's end would become considerably more difficult to knock over given the design of the vehicle. That third wing adds a lot more stability to a toy. If you have the Action Fleet versions unboxed, you should give it a try. The Interceptor topples with a slight nudge, while the Defender needs considerably more. If you are walking and step on the Interceptor, the motion of your foot will likely knock the points down to the floor, thus severely reducing the amount of damage your foot will receive. This is unlikely to happen with the Defender sans stand.

JediTricks
09-08-2008, 05:08 AM
The TIE Interceptor design from Galoob started the trend of adding an extra shape to the back of the wing to ensure it won't stand straight upright, Hasbro borrowed this concept a few years later on the full-sized version, and then did the same with the Titanium Series version.

Unfortunately, the 3 wings of the TIE Defender make that impossible, the only other choices would have been a cone sticking out the back of the main pod, or break-away wings (my preference).


Glad we got the question somewhat answered, though I'm not surprised they didn't give us everything, that's been my challenge for over 2 years now. :p

sicqnus
09-12-2008, 01:38 AM
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Interesting that diecast is [I]so much more difficult to work with than plastic... maybe the zamac expert Sicqnus can shed some light on it. Seems to me that Galoob's diecast ships were as least as good, 10 years ago.
Maybe it's trickier than it seems, with the tools and labour available for the ships they now want to make...
Time to think up some new TS questions...

It's true that the die-cast are always less detailed than plastic minis.
Remember Johnny Lightning ? At first, their StarTrek minis were to be made in metal but finally, as they haven't reached the level of detail they've wanted to, they've decided to chose resin for the ships and kept the die-cast for the stands.

Zamac or other alloys are also much more difficult to paint than resin.

Darth Duranium
10-01-2008, 02:33 AM
SSG: Will the Titanium Series Cylon Heavy Raider that Hasbro previously announced be released before the license expires?

Hasbro: This one was planned, but we never got enough reference to start the vehicle design so it was dropped from the plan.

Well, that's a pantload, huh? Never got enough reference material? Jeez, we at SSG could have helped out, if that was the real issue. Doesn't explain why so few BSG ships were done by Hasbro in recent months though.

I guess it's not entirely unexpected 'cause we knew the still-missing-in-action basestar was the last one. Would have been nice... the HR is quite an important and frequently-seen ship on the series. Looked wicked, too.

JediTricks
10-08-2008, 01:43 AM
I'm not surprised, you NEVER see that ship up-close on the show, I wonder if they have a full-sized CGI model to source from. Still, they should have made a stink about it, forced 'em to get what they had to 'em. My guess is Universal didn't want to play second-fiddle to SW anymore and decided to drag their feet.

Darth Duranium
10-08-2008, 08:11 PM
Well, at least we're not holding our breath for it... I'm glad you asked the question, JT.

Never say never, JT: the Heavy Raider's been seen up close many times on the show... off the top of my head I can recall quite a few:

- Taking off/searching on Caprica when Helo and Athena are trying to get away
- Hundreds seen flying around on New Caprica
- One crashes into the flight bay and Cylons board the Galactica
- During the attack on the Hub they're tethered to the vipers
- Transported Starbuck et al to Kobol from Caprica
- Hundreds seen in space in various battles
- Starbuck follows one and she disappears into a nebula, presumed dead

I'm sure there are many more appearances.

I don't think we ever saw a physical standing set/prop like the Raptor, Vipers, or Raider... only CG... but the HR itself is all over the series.

I can see Hasbro skipping the Stealthstars and Guardian ships as they're only one-off's from individual episodes but the HR is ubiquitous as hell.

I like the red-eyed "head" on it... would have been nice to get that one.

I think that the issue for Hasbro is the ludicrous airdate schedule, which has suffered from huge delays and slow decision-making on Universal's part. Hard to build a marketing campaign on a show that is only on sporadically... not that Hasbro tried, really.

Universal kinda reminds me of NBC and the original Trek... the network seems on killin' it.

It's already in daily syndication here... hope it gains more popularity and more "movies" are forthcoming.

JediTricks
10-09-2008, 04:33 AM
Only the first picture is something I can actually recognize as a vehicle, the rest is muddled. :p

You are so right that NBC seems bent on destroying this show. I don't think Hasbro would care a lick about release sched though, they have put out some crazy stuff without much support in this line.

Darth Duranium
10-10-2008, 10:29 PM
I'm starting to think that you're muddled, JT! :grin: Time to up those meds!

Here's a few more screenshots from the BSG wiki. Yup, we see a fair amount of that ship... certainly enough to warrant a TS version, IMO. Oh well. Ain't gonna happen...

I heard Universal got stiffed by some of its partners... I know Sky One dropped out for one... and the show just stayed very expensive to produce.

I still think that the slice n' dice broadcast schedule (including its shifting day and time) kept the show from growing in popularity and developing any kind of coherent way to market it. It didn't help that it's (mainly) broadcast on a specialty cable channel in the US.

Maybe it's just too intelligent and complex for the drooling masses...

BTW, Has Hasbro mass-produced toys for any other cable show? Just curious...

JediTricks
10-16-2008, 12:34 AM
I can't think of any cable show that's had toys before this.

Darth Duranium
10-25-2008, 10:34 AM
CreatureCantina.com (Nigel): It’s pretty obvious that someone at Hasbro loves Bossk. I mean, he uttered three words and one snarl onscreen, and he’s had, what, four or five different toy versions since 1995? I realize there’s probably very little or no chance of 3”-scale versions of his Hound’s Tooth or Nashtah Pup ships being made, but howzabout a ginchy retro-jag CAP-2 Captivator reissue for our little Trandoshans to tool around in? Or, come to think of it, any of the cooler mini-rig-sized toys? I’m thinking specifically of the ISP-6 Shuttle Pod, Desert Sail Skiff, One-Man Sand Skimmer, Ewok Catapult, and Vehicle Maintenance Energizer.
- A. Nonymous, loyal reader and in need of a lift.

Hasbro: It isn't just us. Bounty hunters are *cool* and fans seem to have an insatiable appetite for their kind. You will no doubt be very pleased by one of the ships we have in store for the Titanium Series next year. As for 3-3/4" versions of Trandoshan ships, it's highly unlikely except if they do show up in a significant way in the animation or live-action entertainment. Given the animated Clone Wars team's affinity for cool canonical alien species, it wouldn't surprise us if they did show up at some point, and our vote is for Bossk and his ship to be part of the action.

Sounds like Hasbro's gonna do a Hound's Tooth, if we can believe anything that Hasbro says anymore. I'll put it next to my imaginary Outrider and Basestar.

LTBasker
10-25-2008, 03:20 PM
That would be pretty cool, I'd like to see a Hound's Tooth done. Actually, they really could do quite a bit from Shadows of the Empire; Hound's Tooth, IG-2000, Xizor's Virago, Guri's Stinger. Some swoops could easily be done as well, as Galoob's swoops are already in Titanium's speederbike scale.

Also, wanted to spread the word... If anybody's interested in seeing if Hasbro would consider protective clamshells for us to store our Titaniums in, feel free to vote for it in the latest Q&A.


24 - With Titanium Series 3" vehicles rapidly becoming one of the most successful Hasbro Star Wars sub-lines with over 60 individual carded releases, it's become nearly impossible to display them all at once. The main reason is that the unique packaging - although admirable in its specialized shape, custom graphics, and large window for the product - doesn't stack well and is very difficult to keep in mint condition with an easily-crushed and -scuffed round bubble, and vulnerable J-hook. Might Hasbro be willing to offer some sort of clamshell-style protective cases for the packaging, even if it's just through HasbroToyShop, similar to the one for the 3.75" figures?