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Qui-Long Gone
12-14-2010, 11:20 AM
With the stellar release of the ROTJ wave (Gams, Acks, Lukes, Ewoks) closing out 2010, I've been thinking of two questions, when will I stop collecting and what am I going to do with my collection if I ever lose interest in it?

I'd like to hear other members thoughts also, but if you'll indulge me, here are mine....

Whenever the better releases of figures come out, I typically give my kids the older versions of the former figures (sort of selfish I guess, but they don't care...we still buy them new figures too, so it's all good). My 4 year old is very much SW crazy right now and his 9 year old sister still likes them too, but that won't last long for her. I see them still wanting figures for at least another 3-5 years.

I keep a few of my favorites in my office under 2 protective display cases (the rest in storage). I teach theatre design at a small university, so my peers and students think my extensive toy collection makes sense. I get alot of inspiration from the SW universe (and most anything 80s). With my job, any source helps!

One case is exclusively ROTJ, centered around the new Jabba/throne (add the old tongue from the last Jabba for extra awesomeness, it fits in the far left corner of his mouth nicely). I need a bigger case now as more skiff thugs get released and I'd like to see this new Luke done again with vest, cloak, and ungloved right hand. (I need to get the newer version of skiff Lando too, the POTF one looks antiquated now)

The other case is a series of what I call "showdowns," Bespin Luke vs removable helmet Vader, Jango vs Obi Wan, QGJ vs Tattoine Maul, Biker Scout vs Wicket, Storm Solo vs Storm, etc.... I'd like to get a few more figures for this collection along with a larger case too. Some of my figures in storage could go in the bigger case for this theme.

I will never stop collecting OT figures as long as the quality remains high, but don't have much more interest in the PT figures beyond the major characters (pretty much all done in their definitive versions: QGJ, Obi, Anakin, etc.). I may be done with the PT once (if ever) they release the solo version of evolutions Maul. I missed collecting the ANH Solo (my favorite character) and once I get a super great Solo I'll consider myself happy. My hopes are high for the pending Bespin Solo.

If my kids want them, I guess I leave the collection to them. Or, most likely I can see grandkids wanting to have my stuff. I imagine SW will live on with future generations assuming society still values imagination in 20 - 30 years.... Eventually, my collection will probably only be special to me, but no matter, escapism, fantasy, and childhood dreams are important ingredients to keeping other human virtues tasty, namely imagination, creativity, and storytelling. The power of myth and metaphor are, fundamentally, what makes our species superior to all others. We can do more than survive and exist, we can make survival and existance better.

Your thoughts?

Snowtrooper
12-14-2010, 01:07 PM
I don't know that I'll ever stop collecting completely, unless I take a real hit financially. As the hobby gets more expensive and as my space dwindles, it will cause me to cut back, though. I'll probably move towards making dioramas and displays more when that happens, so I'll still be in the hobby in some way.

If I would ever completely lose interest, which is hard to imagine at this point, I'm not 100% sure what I would do. At this point, I have daughters and I'm not sure when they grow up they would be terribly interested in it. Perhaps if the grandkids would be interested I'd just give it to them. If not, then I'd probably try to sell it and see what I could get for it.

Dark Marble
12-14-2010, 01:10 PM
Hey!

Thank you for sharing your thoughts. I have always collected just for me, as an escape and just as enjoyment. This collection has always been an important little piece in my life and I have done it for a long time.

I also give old or outdated stuf to my kids. Both of them scored the POTF2 and Endor AT-AT's recently and they freaked out! I keep one of each loose figure in my collection since the Vintage line and I am very picky about vehicles trying to avoid repaints if I can and update to the bigger better ones if I need to. I collect from all six movies.

All that said I am getting older and space is getting tighter and I am looking for ways to shrink down years of collecting. I am a collector that loves what I am doing and gets a lot of pleasure out of it. But I could see being very happy hanging it up. Over the years it has been a wild ride and a constant source of happy. Artistically, for me, it has been a source of inspiration. Starting in 2011 I think I will try just to collect the main line movie figures and avoid everything else in the line unless it is so amazing I can't resist.

**I'm looking at you vehicles**.

Honestly, when all is said and done, I hope my kids won't ever have to deal with all of that stuff unless they really want to. What a nightmare to have to go through!!

Mr. JabbaJohnL
12-14-2010, 03:13 PM
I have no intentions to stop collecting. Unlike a lot of fans here, I love and collect from all six films and the Clone Wars (I also collect EU, even if I don't love every story from it). So my enthusiasm for the source material is as high as ever, and the figures keep improving, so I certainly don't want to stop.

As has been said, space is indeed an issue. I have an entire room devoted to nothing but Hasbro SW stuff, and already it's quite full. I'm just going to have to keep rearranging or adding shelves or something, but I won't stop until it's done (well, then I'll go back and get things I missed or army builders on the secondary market). I don't plan on having kids for quite a while so I don't know how they'll factor into anything.

El Chuxter
12-14-2010, 03:15 PM
My future collection had better include a Kneesa figure. That's all I'm saying.

Bel-Cam Jos
12-14-2010, 06:24 PM
I'm within 100 of having 1138 total SW figures, so the inside joke compels me to reach that plateau and then stop.

Where will these collectibles go? To the museum that all of us considered opening some time in the past (where people will pay actual money to look at toys behind glass).

There will be an app to download figures directly to your phone in the future, where you play with them as holograms instead of petroleum-based physical toys after the world's oil runs out.

Neuroleptic
12-14-2010, 07:23 PM
Once I reach the point where I'm only buying one or two figures a year, I plan to start working on diorama building as a hobby along with my traditional art that I work on now.

As for when I finaly decide to get rid of it, I'll either die and leave it to my kid to sell, keep, or give away as she sees fit, or if I tire of it before I die, I'll just sell it for what I can get.

I really only see me actively collecting a few more years. I only want a few more difinitive versions of some of the main characters from episodes 4-6 and after that it'll be very rare that I buy anything I think.

TheDarthVader
12-14-2010, 10:34 PM
I have been "watering down" my collection. My wife and I have a baby on the way so some of my star wars toys have to go. I still buy modern vintage figures. They are too cool to pass up. But that means older figures have to go.

I simply do not have the room in my little 2 bedroom 1 bathroom house. :(

Its okay though...I keep the figures I really really love. ;)

Rogue II
12-14-2010, 11:48 PM
I'm going to keep doing what I've done for the past few years. Since I only collect OT figures, there isn't much new for me to buy. The number gets narrowed down even further because I don't buy all the figures from each wave.

bigbarada
12-15-2010, 11:54 PM
I've been collecting Star Wars toys since 1978, so I doubt there will ever come a time that I won't be buying Star Wars figures any more. Even if the line is completely cancelled, there are still mountains of secondary-market product out there to collect.

Plus, I will most likely never completely lose interest in my collection, but I do lose interest in parts of it as time goes on. So, once a year I go through and start downsizing everything. If I don't display it anymore and can bear to part with it, then I get rid of it. This helps keep my collection small and ensures that I only hold onto the stuff that I really, really want.

For most of my childhood my "collection" was really small. More often that not I owned only 1 or 2 figures, if any at all. I graduated high school in 1991 and when I got word that Star Wars toys were returning in 1994, I thought that it was finally my chance to fulfill all of those childhood dreams of owning every figure and amassing a huge collection of toys. However, what I began to discover was that I enjoyed Star Wars more when the toys were few and far between. As the toys started to pile up, the collection started to become stressful and burdensome. The irony being that collecting was how I expressed my interest in Star Wars, but the size of my collection was inversely proportional to that interest. In other words, the more Star Wars stuff I buy, the more my interest in Star Wars diminishes. So keeping my collection small and under control is a good way to keep from getting burned out completely.

Another thing that helps keep my interest high is focusing only on the characters that interest me. Unlike many old-school fans, I didn't watch Star Wars in theaters and then immediately run out to buy the action figures. My interest in the toys came first and I wouldn't see any of the films until years and years later. I first watched ANH in 1983 and I didn't see ESB or ROTJ until 1986. So I chose the cool looking characters first and their role in the films was nearly irrelevant. This is why I've always gravitated towards the background aliens and droids. The human characters were always too boring for me (with the exception of Han Solo). It's also why I've never been too interested in recreating scenes from the films by building dioramas, because the stories that I could make up in my head were always better.

Now I'm not saying that...
completism
buying only the best versions of every main character
army building
grail searching (focusing on only the super-rare or one-of-a-kind items)
diorama building
...aren't great reasons to collect Star Wars figures; they're just not my reasons for collecting Star Wars figures.

A mistake that I've made a lot in the past and one that has led to burnout on more than one occasion, was trying to live up to other people's collecting goals. I have to collect for my own reasons, regardless of whether those reasons make sense to anyone else.

I'm more of a character focus and alien-species focus collector; but I try not to get too obsessive-compulsive about it. In other words I never want to feel like I have to buy something in order to complete a set. If I'm not feeling it at that moment, then I don't make the purchase. I'd rather have a hole in my collection than buy a toy out of a sense of obligation.

Anyways, my primary character focuses are:
1. Barada/Kithaba
2. Gamorrean Guards
3. Klaatu/Wooof
4. Bossk
5. Skiff Guards/Jabba's Henchmen
6. Ewoks
7. Ep3 Wookiees (I wish, I don't own any because all the current figures suck)

Anything within those categories would be almost a guaranteed purchase from me. But the rules aren't set in stone, because I reserve the right to buy any figure that might strike my fancy at the moment. The occasional impulse purchase helps to keep things unpredictable and interesting.

I guess eventually I could foresee a time where I don't buy anything new at all; but I would continue to downsize my collection. Which would ultimately leave me with just a tiny handful of my most beloved toys. Conceivably, I could even downsize the collection so far that I would be left with only one action figure, just like it was for a majority of my childhood. The question is, which figure would that be? Is it a figure that I own now or a figure that I haven't bought yet?

Well, looking at all the Star Wars toys I own right at this moment, if it's not the TVC Gamorrean Guard, then it's nobody. Of course that decision might get clouded a bit once Kithaba is released next year. :)

Daryl VayDar
12-16-2010, 12:59 PM
I've found that the future of my collecting is actually now. A few weeks ago, I purchased my 4th and final piggy from the new wave. I knew that I wanted 2 for Jabba's Throneroom, 1 for the droid torture room, and 1 to be eaten by the Rancor. I was happy to find him, but after I opened him a really big moment happened for me.
I typically clip elements of the packaging when I open the figures so that I can later identify the sources of my loose figures. As I hunted around for some scissors, I was suddenly hit with an overwhelming sense of frustration. Not because I couldn't find the scissors, but because I realized that all of the 'things' that I had to do to maintain my collection had become tedious and unwelcome. I went down to my basement where I store my collection and looked around with growing disgust and despair. I own WAY too much stuff.
Over the years (I've been actively collecting since the line re-started in '95) the act and process of collecting took on more of a life than the collection itself. I opened a few boxes and realized how many things I own that have NEVER once been displayed. So many things have been displayed briefly and never seen again...
I closed the door to my collection room and decided to spend a day mulling over how and why I collect and see what I came up with. It actually took me about 20 minutes to realize that in some ways I hated my collection and what it had become. At some point in the past it moved far beyond buying what I wanted and became a job.
I forced myself to look at what things about Star Wars that really attracted me on a truly personal level to determine how I would handle my collecting moving forward.
I am a diorama builder. I really like to recreate the scenes from the movies that resonated with me, it makes me happy to walk through the room and see a great recreation of the battle of Endor, or Jabba's Palace. I prefer that over simply standing figures in a line on a shelf. To me, a diorama is a work of art. It requires some thought- composition, construction, content... it allows creativity within the act of collecting. Toys on a shelf are just that... toys on a shelf. You are required to open the package, stand them up, and try not to bump them and knock them over.
I asked myself what scenes I found iconic, what things that I wanted to invest the time and creativity to construct. It turned out that list was pretty small. I love Hoth. To me, Hoth is the perfect realization of the struggles between the rebels and empire, and has some of the greatest designs of the saga in it. The Cantina and Jabba's palace are awesome because of the alien angle. Endor, again, shows that the little guy can actually succeed against the evil empire....
That was about it. I have gathered hundreds of figures, vehicles, playsets and stuff to re-create dozens of "scenes" that don't actually mean much to me.
Wow.
In the course of about an hour, I took a hobby that has been a part of my life for the past 15 years, looked at what it honestly means to me and my attitudes and dedication to it and changed my entire outlook on it!
I currently have about 200 auctions on ebay, and will have hundreds more before the end of the year. I'm done with the Clone Wars, I'm mostly done with the prequels, and I'm really only looking to buy new things that complement the dio's that I want to make. I know a lot of you already have that attitude, but I just found it, and can honestly say that I'm happier about my collection and collecting in general than I've been in a decade.

bigbarada
12-16-2010, 07:49 PM
I closed the door to my collection room and decided to spend a day mulling over how and why I collect and see what I came up with. It actually took me about 20 minutes to realize that in some ways I hated my collection and what it had become. At some point in the past it moved far beyond buying what I wanted and became a job.
I forced myself to look at what things about Star Wars that really attracted me on a truly personal level to determine how I would handle my collecting moving forward.

I've gone through very similar experiences several times over the years. It actually took me a few years of journaling about my Star Wars memories for me to discover what really pulled me into Star Wars in the first place. A lot of it was learning to separate what actually happened during my childhood and what I simply wished had happened.

I took Psychology in college and I learned that human memory is easily manipulated. The older the memory, the easier it distorts. Memories get switched around, events that took place at different times get merged together, people get transplanted on top of other people, we can even absorb other peoples memories as our own. If you don't take proactive steps to document your memories (journaling is the best way) then they WILL get distorted over time.

So I wanted to learn about what REALLY drew me into Star Wars and exactly when that happened. Like I've mentioned earlier, I was 5 years old when I got my first Star Wars toy in 1978, but to me Star Wars was never anything special. It wasn't until 1983 and the enormous media push that surrounded ROTJ that I really got sucked in. Prior to that I thought Star Wars was cool and we had a few toys, but I was much more familiar with Battlestar Galactica, Star Trek, Buck Rogers, The Outer Limits, Planet of the Apes, etc. I have some vague memories of seeing early parts of the Holiday Special in 1978, but I'm pretty sure my parents would have changed the channel very early on. :D

In 1983, as mentioned, there was the massive marketing push for ROTJ, plus the network television premiere of Star Wars on CBS. The earliest promotional images from ROTJ that really captured my imagination as a kid were photos of the Skiff Guards (primarily the two Weequays) and that famous photo of the Gamorrean Guard sitting in front of the cannon on the Sail Barge. Shortly after that we got ahold of the Return of the Jedi Storybook and I think I read that cover to cover at least once a day for several weeks. And I poured over the photos and studied every single one of them.

My earliest favorite characters from ROTJ were the Gamorrean Guards, the Weequays, Ephant Mon, and Kithaba (known only to me as the "bulldog-faced guy") - all clearly visible in the Storybook. Later on I also started to really like the Ewoks, Admiral Ackbar, Chewbacca and Darth Vader. Darth Vader turning from a bad guy into a good guy was the reason that I liked the character so much.

I didn't like Jabba that much at all back then because he was asymmetrical. For some reason I had this weird obsession with symmetry as a kid (I probably still do to some degree). So I was also never a big fan of the asymmetrical ships from Star Wars, like the Millenium Falcon, B-Wing, etc. It also bothered me a bit that the Weequays draped their ponytails over one shoulder instead of evenly distributing them over both shoulders (plus guys weren't supposed to be wearing ponytails anyhow), so that's probably one reason that I never formed a very strong attachment to that alien species as a kid. Very strange, I know. :cross-eye

Oh yeah, and I was totally freaked out by Bib Fortuna's head tails. I didn't even like looking at him until years later.

Anyways, as I got further into the Star Wars films, I developed a real appreciation for the AT-ATs and the Cantina aliens. Especially the Cantina Band, which I always thought was available as a mail away action figure set and wouldn't learn differently until about 1993.

When we finally go to see Star Wars on television in 1983, I developed a real attachment to See-Threepio and Artoo-Detoo and started to look up to Han Solo. Han shooting Greedo first made me respect him a lot. Even my Vietnam-veteran father, who hated Star Wars, liked Han Solo for his no nonsense practicality.

Anyways, long story short, I find that I enjoy my collection much, much more if I only focus on characters that meant something to me as a kid and STILL mean something to me as an adult.

Unfortunately the oversaturation of Darth Vader, Han Solo, Chewbacca, Artoo-Detoo and See-Threepio toys has really hurt my esteem of those characters. Unless I can find a reason to get excited about a new release, then there isn't much incentive for me to buy new figures of those guys.

But when I really get down to it, what pulled me into Star Wars in the first place was the alien designs for ROTJ. Particularly those created for Jabba's Palace and the Skiff Battle. As long as I focus on those, then my collection NEVER feels old or stale or burdensome.

Qui-Long Gone
12-16-2010, 08:47 PM
I didn't like Jabba that much at all back then because he was asymmetrical. For some reason I had this weird obsession with symmetry as a kid (I probably still do to some degree). So I was also never a big fan of the asymmetrical ships from Star Wars, like the Millenium Falcon, B-Wing, etc. It also bothered me a bit that the Weequays draped their ponytails over one shoulder instead of evenly distributing them over both shoulders (plus guys weren't supposed to be wearing ponytails anyhow), so that's probably one reason that I never formed a very strong attachment to that alien species as a kid. Very strange, I know.

That's not strange at all, I had the exact opposite aesthetic attraction....I loved the asymmetrical quality of the SW universe and never got much into the designs that were symmetrical! In contrast, I was a late fan of Star Trek because it was too neat and symmetrical. Of course, now I love them both, but as a kid, I was strongly drawn to the "earthy" quality of the OT. I think that is part of why I progressively resist the prequels (nothing to say of the plot/writing)...the digital world is way to tidy!

Tauntaunt
12-19-2010, 08:51 PM
I like the vintage style cards,I think they`re the best ever(The vintage) and the Vintage(modern) need to have a cool cardback just like the real vintage used to have(with lots of pictures of the figures,not just 5 or six).

While Hasbro keep producing Vintage style cards I`ll be interested. :thumbsup:

dindae
12-21-2010, 05:14 PM
I don't know when I'll stop collecting. I know that I have cut back several times. I haven't sold anything except the when I sold all of my carded figures and stuck to just loose figures. Right now I collect the main line and new movie vehicles. Any new figure is a buy for me. Resculpts are hit and miss. They can do some amazing upgrades and other times I'm not sure why thy bothered. I am thankful that the pass has slowed. The 60+ figures a year plus vehicles, plus battlepacks, etc was insane. Every year there are fewer and fewer new character to due and resculpts needed. And while I am one of those people that would buy a moisture farmer figure I figure that when Hasbro gets to the point where that figure is a solid pick the line probably will die. I don't know if I will collect older figures at that point or not. I do plan on working on my dioramas more. If I ever got rid of my collection I would probably give it away to a child if any were interested at the time. I suppose I could sell it but selling loose figures is barely worth it.

Obsession is Nute
12-21-2010, 09:48 PM
For me it is a complex formula. When I move into my new place, I am turning one room into a Star Wars museum room and will use 5 professional display cases that I bought from Sharper Image when one of their local stores liquidated everything, to display my figures (need tables or stands for to stand the cases on though). I will have bookshelves in there as well. My goal will be to represent, artistically and materially, the whole Star Wars universe the best I can, within the constraints of space.

I have found that in spite of a rising disposable income the past three years, I have actually spent less and less each successive year. My love of Star Wars has not diminished, but I feel like Hasbro is releasing less and less product that demands my attention in 3 3/4 inch line. Part of it is natural. Once you have bought that AAT tank, you don't need to buy another. Since we are limited to the six movies and the CW series (which I buy sparingly) Hasbro is equally limited to what it can produce as it has a clear adversion to EU. I feel with a few outstanding exceptions, Hasbro has mined the films pretty well, so the likelyhood of me spending more decreases.

I will always keep my eyes glued to my computer screen during SDCC and TF for the latest news and images from Hasbro. I will continue to remain on the lookout for new SW stuff, but right now it is more about maintaining and displaying the boarderline unmanagable leviathan that is my Star Wars Collection.

"Stopping" collecting will never, ever happen. Even if I lost an interest in Star Wars, which is unlikely, I could never live with myself knowing how much money I have spent on Star Wars for no reason. Out of self respect, I will always collect, even if it is small additions each year.

Mr. JabbaJohnL
12-22-2010, 01:10 AM
Hasbro is equally limited to what it can produce as it has a clear adversion to EU.
It's not really up to Hasbro. They released an absolute ton of EU product in the last few years, but the majority of it didn't sell as well as movie and Clone Wars-based items, so they had to kind of back off from it for a while.

Obsession is Nute
12-22-2010, 02:03 AM
It's not really up to Hasbro. They released an absolute ton of EU product in the last few years, but the majority of it didn't sell as well as movie and Clone Wars-based items, so they had to kind of back off from it for a while.


True, true. I didn't mean they had a personal issue with EU, they are in the business to make money after all. Poor word choice on my part.

bigbarada
12-22-2010, 10:07 AM
I think that is part of why I progressively resist the prequels (nothing to say of the plot/writing)...the digital world is way to tidy!

This is kind of off topic, but your comment about resisting the Prequels made me think of a theory that exists in the field of robotics called the "uncanny valley."

What it basically says is that the closer robots get to mimicking human appearance and actions, the more likely they are to inspire revulsion and distrust in humans around them.

The theory is linked with computer generated people (http://www.cubo.cc/creepygirl/) as well. The closer to photorealistic humans they appear the less endearing and more unsettling they are, especially if they are moving in a realistic manner.

So I kind of wonder if that is a factor in why audiences didn't really connect with the prequels as much and the CG characters like Jar Jar, Watto, Yoda, Dexter Jettster, etc. just feel wrong to audiences and are more likely to be disliked compared to the less realistic aliens from the OT, like the puppet Yoda, Gamorreans, Greedo, puppet Jabba, etc.

The Uncanny Valley (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Uncanny_Valley)

El Chuxter
12-22-2010, 12:42 PM
I still say that Hasbro could've done better with the EU if they'd listened more to fans instead of making what they personally wanted, and avoided multipacks altogether, particularly those that make you buy a re-release, resculpt, or boring figure.

I mean, really, people clamor for Jedi Knight Corran Horn, so they slap a new head on X-Wing Luke Skywalker and call it Pilot Corran Horn, then sell it for $18 as a HTF exclusive with a part for an unrelated Darktrooper, while releasing their entire design team as Mandaloreans and that "Crimson Empire Power Rangers Crossover Spectacular" set, and they wonder why people don't line up for them.

Obsession is Nute
12-22-2010, 01:32 PM
I still say that Hasbro could've done better with the EU if they'd listened more to fans instead of making what they personally wanted, and avoided multipacks altogether, particularly those that make you buy a re-release, resculpt, or boring figure.

I mean, really, people clamor for Jedi Knight Corran Horn, so they slap a new head on X-Wing Luke Skywalker and call it Pilot Corran Horn, then sell it for $18 as a HTF exclusive with a part for an unrelated Darktrooper, while releasing their entire design team as Mandaloreans and that "Crimson Empire Power Rangers Crossover Spectacular" set, and they wonder why people don't line up for them.

I think part of the problem is that EU preferences are even more diverse than the films. EU is such a niche market to begin with as one obviously needs to have read the source material to have an interest in the toys.

Some collectors loathe the EU and look at it as "glorified fanfiction." So they won't buy anything, dimishing the market.

Some collectors embrace certain elements or stories from the EU and shun others, it is difficult to determine which ones people will like. I fall in this catagory, I love almost all EU but have minimal interest in the classic comics (I did grab a few of those comic packs though), the Legacy era or the KOTOR Comics. It becomes even trickier with which figures to produce. SOTE is a highly regarded EU source but people really have a dislike for Xizor. Only recently did my local TRU remove the six or so comic packs with him and cankles Leia from their pegs.

Some collectors embrace all EU and will buy pretty much anything.

I think the complexities of EU selection were just too much for too narrow a market, alas. Although, if memory serves, the demand for the EU wave in May was almost out of control.

bigbarada
12-22-2010, 05:49 PM
Although, if memory serves, the demand for the EU wave in May was almost out of control.

I think Hasbro's announcement that the EU wave would be a limited-release TRU exclusive actually generated far more demand for that wave than would have otherwise been there if it had just been a regular release.

dindae
12-22-2010, 06:42 PM
I mean, really, people clamor for Jedi Knight Corran Horn, so they slap a new head on X-Wing Luke Skywalker and call it Pilot Corran Horn, then sell it for $18 as a HTF exclusive with a part for an unrelated Darktrooper, while releasing their entire design team as Mandaloreans and that "Crimson Empire Power Rangers Crossover Spectacular" set, and they wonder why people don't line up for them.

Yeah the Mandalorean set was the set that broke this camel's back from being a completist. I got it in the mail and wondered why the hell did I spend $80 on these. The Crimson Empire I can see in a way since the previous sets from Crimson Empire did well and they could do one mold for several figures but the Power Rangers simalarities should have been a clue. I also think as picky as we sometimes are a community the fact that the EU is hard to pinpoint definitive images for a character makes it hard as well. Movie character are easy there is a visual source. But a lot of characters have only one partial painting on a book jacket or in the case of comics conflicting artistic takes depending on the artist of the month.

El Chuxter
12-22-2010, 06:54 PM
The TRU EU wave was, overall, a solid wave. Finally got Jacen and Jaina after begging for fifteen years, as well as a Darktrooper that looked awesome, another TFU figure, a Thrawn trilogy resculpt, and a highly regarded cartoon and comic Jedi. Plus the highly anticipated alien Bespin Guard stuck in.

If all EU figures were this well-chosen (I think there wasn't a single one who hadn't shown up consistently on wish lists since the character debuted) and well-executed (anyone have a single complaint about the construction of any of the figures?), then I'd wager EU would sell better.

It didn't hurt things, though, that the pack-in Build-A-Droid was one of the most highly requested OT droids of all.

Mr. JabbaJohnL
12-22-2010, 11:18 PM
I think part of the problem is that EU preferences are even more diverse than the films. EU is such a niche market to begin with as one obviously needs to have read the source material to have an interest in the toys.

Some collectors loathe the EU and look at it as "glorified fanfiction." So they won't buy anything, dimishing the market.

Some collectors embrace certain elements or stories from the EU and shun others, it is difficult to determine which ones people will like. I fall in this catagory, I love almost all EU but have minimal interest in the classic comics (I did grab a few of those comic packs though), the Legacy era or the KOTOR Comics. It becomes even trickier with which figures to produce. SOTE is a highly regarded EU source but people really have a dislike for Xizor. Only recently did my local TRU remove the six or so comic packs with him and cankles Leia from their pegs.

Some collectors embrace all EU and will buy pretty much anything.

I think the complexities of EU selection were just too much for too narrow a market, alas. Although, if memory serves, the demand for the EU wave in May was almost out of control.
I agree on all counts. I really like some EU (TFU, Republic Commandos) but absolutely loathe others (Legacy). I can't really get invested in the KOTOR stuff, as really nothing that happens can really have an effect on the films (and I think the best EU can make you look at the films in a new light, like The Clone Wars, though I don't really consider that EU). As a completist, I still bought all of it. But I can totally understand that people picked and chose what they wanted. I don't think we can underestimate this fact enough.

I mean, Chux, you love Teek, but others might not like the Ewok movies. On the other hand, you (and I) don't care for Legacy, but from what I understand it's actually quite popular. So when you say "people have been asking about this one for years," realize that it's probably a very small but vocal selection of fans, and what people like on different sites only matches up occasionally.

The Mandalorian set sold relatively well, I think; the Mandos are still incredibly popular among a lot of fans, solely on their visual appeal and potential (I mean, Boba did absolutely nothing in the films . . . but that's a conversation for another time). If we didn't know some of the Hasbro team members' names, I don't think we would have known that they were based on them; we know that, but I'm thinking that most people just thought "Mandalorians!" and got the sets. But it was an online exclusive, and the markets are different for those sorts of products anyway.

On that same note, the Crimson Empire and Rebel insignia TIE Fighter were also online exclusives. To me, they looked goofy as hell; I'm assuming others felt the same as they went to drugstores for $20 each last year (or whenever it was).

With stuff in stores, though, it was a much more mixed bag. From what I can tell, there were over 60 comic packs between late 2006 and early 2010 - that's well over 100 comic-based figures (with a small amount being the funky-colored main characters). Even if they didn't get to everything you wanted, you have to admit they had a hell of a varied selection in there. Looking at the list, there were quite a few heavy hitters - Carnor Jax, Kir Kanos, Quinlan Vos, both the Hetts, a ton of pilots, Talon Karrde, Darth Talon, Darth Krayt, and a ton of pilots and riffs on the main characters, to name a few. According to Hasbro, the main characters were the ones that sold the best, by virtue of them being the main characters. While there were quite a few obscure choices, and probably several that you yourself didn't want, I don't think we can blame the line's collapse solely on Hasbro's choices. I mean, what else could they have done? It can't be 100% the most important EU characters, all the time. You've got to hold and maintain interest in the line, having people still anticipate some of their most-wanted figures instead of dumping them all at once, which maybe they didn't do enough. But I think the price hike from $9.99 to around $12.99 after the recession, and people not wanting to buy the older sets that clogged the shelves, is another extremely important factor in the line's demise.

With the basic figures, the EU figures have seemingly had much more success. Scorch was damn near impossible to find in 2006 until he was repacked later in the year. 2007's wave 5 was incredibly popular, including figures like Darth Revan and Darth Malak. The TRU wave, as was said, was also really popular. So why are the basic-line figures doing so much better than the ancillary sets? Is it price? Character recognizability? The exclusivity? People wanting to get everything from the basic line and occasionally ignore the multipacks? I think they all play a part to one degree or another.

Darth Metalmute
12-23-2010, 01:41 AM
The TRU EU wave was, overall, a solid wave. Finally got Jacen and Jaina after begging for fifteen years, as well as a Darktrooper that looked awesome, another TFU figure, a Thrawn trilogy resculpt, and a highly regarded cartoon and comic Jedi. Plus the highly anticipated alien Bespin Guard stuck in.

If all EU figures were this well-chosen (I think there wasn't a single one who hadn't shown up consistently on wish lists since the character debuted) and well-executed (anyone have a single complaint about the construction of any of the figures?), then I'd wager EU would sell better.

It didn't hurt things, though, that the pack-in Build-A-Droid was one of the most highly requested OT droids of all.

That's another problem with Hasbro's EU figures. When they actually make one that's worth getting, everyone wants it and it's impossible to find. I, like you, have been wanting the Solo twins since the first EU wave back in the late 90's. Yet when they finally come out, I had to get them on ebay; partly due to demand, and partly due to the limited release. I only came across the original late 90's EU wave once and was lucky enough to pick it up.

EU figure selection is very important, but the sculpts have to be good as well. I believe there is/was high demand for Vong figures, but the one we got is crappy at best and shoved into a two-pack. I'm not sure how the TFU five packs went over, but I didn't buy them. I only wanted 5 of the ten figures and they were separated out evenly. I didn't need two invisible troopers, a Kota trooper, a Evo Trooper, and two Starkillers. 60+ comic packs filled with mostly EU characters and I bought only 4.

I don't even need an entire wave of EU figures or special sets. One, nicely done core EU character stuck into a wave of 12 once or twice a year would be great, like they are looking to do this year with Bastila and Nom Anor.

I'm curious to see how Bastila will sell. Had Hasbro released her back when KOTOR was released, I would have expected a ridiculous to find figure. But that was 7 years ago. I'm not even sure if I can play that game on the 360.