View Full Version : When someone first finds the figures, do they deserve armies of their favorites?

03-25-2002, 01:32 AM
SirStevesGuide.com continues its "Collector Ettiquete Survey" with a look at raising armies at home. Now droids and Clones are quite common in the Star Wars universe, but in private fans' collections, there is a whole variety of varying tastes for varying quantities of these guys.

With most stores stocking overnight, and learning from our last poll that roughly only 16% of collectors rush the action figure isles no sooner than the doors open for business the next day, we ask what does the broad range of our readers think about those who take Chancellor Palpatine's Army Creation Act with the utter most seriousness?

At 7 am, if someone finds the latest new assortment of Star Wars figures, do they deserve armies of their favorite droids or soldiers?

Keep in mind that 38 % of our readers said they could only be going to work or school at this time, and 23 % said they'd rather sleep and find the figures at their leisure - in spite of frustrations with distribution being common amongst collectors.

So to Army Build or Not? And how can the "nice collector" do it?

03-25-2002, 08:44 AM
I voted "yes" mainly b/c of the old saying "The early bird gets the worm".

Having said that, I would also point out that a lot of restocking gets done at night, before the store closes, be it TRU or W-M or whatever. The folks who have to work or sleep in could have the oppurtunity to shop at closing time.

I would also like to say that I'm not an army builder, so when I find new fig's at 9 or 10 a.m. I'll only buy one or two of each(I will snatch up any $2 CTC Stormie's I can find!).

03-25-2002, 09:05 AM
I voted YES, because unfortunately things have to stay on a first come first served basis. But that doesn't mean I have to like it though. I feel these 7 AM types are all either scalpers or people wasting way too much money building armies. Buy one or two of each figure, SAVE the rest of your money.

03-25-2002, 10:08 AM
I voted other because nothing ever comes here. Poor distribution!! Otherwise Id be there first thing in the morning!!!

03-25-2002, 10:40 AM
In the free market, what you want/find + what you pay = what you get. I would not begrudge anyone that no matter what it means I cannot have.

I suspose if you want to be nice, buy one now and more later. Who of the army builders did not buy Battle droids for $1.99 at TRU? Will this work for Tantive Defenders? Probably not. But being nice is almost always harder than being selfish.

03-25-2002, 12:02 PM
For as many times as I would have liked to have gotten multiple figures I DIDN'T! The reason for this is because I have a little more consideration for my fellow collector than to snag up every last figure I see. In the event that I wanted multiples of figures, I went back to the stores after they had been around for a while and picked up one or two more of them if I ran across them. The rest I had bought on the internet long after they had been on the pegs. The battle droid was not an issue. There were so many of those to be found... EVERYWHERE. I went back every couple weeks to buy one or two more until I was satisfied. Everyone deserves to be able to find the figures without having to suffer the exasperation I and countless other have- driving all over town and still coming home empty-handed.

03-25-2002, 12:08 PM
I havent found any figures in stores for months now. All my shopping is on line now. Its so much more simple. Please post tie bomber sighting. Thanks:D

03-25-2002, 12:25 PM
I also leave figs behind one, so others may get them and two in the hopes that someone may do the same for me and I may find "harder to find" figs.

In fact, I was lucky enought to stroll into TRU one day and they had just put a whole HUGE bin of commtechs out....there were about 15 - 20 r2-holo leia's and me and this guy only took 4 each of which two were for myself (one to open, one to leave in the package to hang on wall lol) and the other two were for fellow SW collectors. So, there were 10 R2's left in the bin for others. We could have totally been jerks and snatched em all at a 1.97 but we didn't :D

03-25-2002, 12:48 PM
Originally posted by JEDIpartnr
For as many times as I would have liked to have gotten multiple figures I DIDN'T! The reason for this is because I have a little more consideration for my fellow collector than to snag up every last figure I see. In the event that I wanted multiples of figures, I went back to the stores after they had been around for a while and picked up one or two more of them if I ran across them. The rest I had bought on the internet long after they had been on the pegs. The battle droid was not an issue. There were so many of those to be found... EVERYWHERE. I went back every couple weeks to buy one or two more until I was satisfied. Everyone deserves to be able to find the figures without having to suffer the exasperation I and countless other have- driving all over town and still coming home empty-handed.

That's exactly the way I've been operating! When it comes to Stormtroopers or Battle Droids, etc., who doesn't want to amass a hundred of these guys?! However, especially with Stormtroopers, finding one is difficult enough. I rarely find new figures right away anyhow, so the issue of how many to take is usually moot. But, I don't see the fairness is emptying a shelf or a bin. I've got a bunch of the battle droids because of the variety of the types that were released and they tended to just sit there week after week. Troopers are a different problem because they are practically never available anywhere, and I have to believe that is because a) more people want them, and b) more people horde them immediately because they are more popular. That just isn't right, in my opinion.

Maximillian Phokas
03-25-2002, 01:57 PM
I am all for building up armies, but like some of the other opinions already posted, I too want to be considerate to my fellow collectors. Building an army when new figures first come out is not only inconsiderate, but rather expensive, with many SW figs being anywhere between six to nine dollars depending where you go.

I usually take one of each if I can find them at first. And knowing the potential for army building, the troops, especially stormtroopers, go fast! My suggestion is waiting a couple of months for the prices to go down on older figures. Two years ago, I was in the local TRU and saw an ENTIRE BIN of Stormtroopers, Snowtroopers, Sandtroopers, Royal Guards, and Rebel Troopers (Tantive IV, Echo Base and Endor), all on clearance and going for $2 a figure! Talk about a deal! For 30 bucks I got 15 figures, with plenty leftover, as opposed to 3 or 4 at original price.

So unless there are dozens of them leave the multiple army figures on the shelves for others. If you want an instant army as soon as possible, shop online. Otherwise, wait for them to go on clearance and save yourself the financial crunch.

03-25-2002, 02:19 PM
It depends if I have extra money at the time. Likely many of you, I live on a budget and I can/could/have blown it on figures very easily. If I have the extra cash, yes, I will buy two or three extras, especially if the figure an army builder.

When the commchip stormies were showing up at TRU for $2 and I found several, yes, I bought them but I did leave some behind for other buyers. And when TRU has the 2/$3 sales, yes I hit the local TRUs looking for specific army builders.

03-25-2002, 02:27 PM
This is a great question. And one that I myself can't even clearly answer, however I will do my best. If in the process of my answer, I offend or make someone upset, please forgive me, however this is my point of view.

I have been collecting STAR WARS figures for a good 25 years now. I started when the line was first introduced in 1977 and have continued faithfully to this day!

I would like to say that I have a nice nearly complete collection of the POTF/POTJ/SOTE sets, and obtaining these figures at times has been very difficult. I have encounted numerous "toy pirates" and other collectors, been tripped, pushed, had my hand slapped, and seen many of these "collectors" go into a frenzy over these 3.75" pieces of plastic.

I'm not saying that I don't get excited when I find a new figure, but I have the common decency and respect for others to at least act like a normal human being, and not push a little kid, or slap someone's hand because they have a figure I want.

Collectors need to act like RESPONSIBLE adults and not crazed maniacs! Is it worth coming to blows over that varient of Jango Fett, or that rare Princess Leia with Sporting Blaster and COMM-Tech Chip? In my opinion, no!

I have had a hard time recently finding the newer POTJ figures. Some of it stems from the fact that like normal people, I can't stand in front of my local Toys R Us or Target at their respective opening times, and rush the aisles for the new toys since I need to work to earn the money in order to buy what I want for my collections! The rest of it stems from the fact that I never know what day or time mostof the new merchandise is put on the shelves. I do have a friend that works at my local Toys R Us, but he is even unclear when the toys come in.

I have had to resrot to ordering the newest waves of figures online from places like www.bigbadtoystore.com. Because of this, I am forced to pay slightly higher prices ($7.99 for a POTJ figure), plus shipping and handeling. To top it off, I have to wait for the figures to be shipped to my house. The plus side is, I know I am getting the figures, the bad side is, I have to wait for them!

I think anyone that has the luck to get figures as they are released should be able to pick up a few copies of the figures they want to build an army. I have done that in the past. But let's all try to be sensible. I think picking up all the copies of a certain figure because it is short packed is a bit greedy and isn't fair for others. I have been known to give a figure to a kid, or another collector if they see that I have one in my hand and they don't! My rule is, if I already have the figure, and they don't, then I'll let them have it since I already have one. If everyone adopted a policy simular to mine...maybe figure wouldn't be so hard to find. At the same time, you can't expect everyone to behave like a few individuals do.

I wish everyone luck and hope they can find what they are looking for! May the force be with us all! :)

jedi master sal
03-25-2002, 03:35 PM
First I do think they deserve to get the figs for their effort but also feel that stores should stock at different times of the day so guys like me can"army build" as well. Now I can't say to much as I seem to have good luck when it comes to army building. Just this past Friday I went to TRu and found all of the previews and bought 1 zam,r3,jango (I already have 1 of each on order somewhere else, but I also bought all of the clonetroopers, 7 to be exact (along with the 2 i have on order) My EPII army building has already been successful. Now as far as etiquitte goes. If there are no other collectors in site or you don't buy for other "friend collectors" then you should get all you want, if on the other hand another collector is looking at the same time and sees you have the stuff they were looking for, you should as a courtesy offer to let them have one of each of you army builders or any other multiple for that matter. (Don't forget the shoe may be on the other foot someday) I have done this and been rewarded by other collectors who have appreciated my sharing. I have create friends because of this and now have a small group of fellow collectors who look out for each other.
So my final vote goes as such: Yes the early riser should get what they want, don't be greedy and share when you can. If the stores don't change their policy on stocking figs then get to know other collectors and hunt for them too while looking for yourself. You'd be suprised at how grateful others can be if you share your find with them. (BTW i am sharing two of my CT's with one of my collector buds).

Take care and MTFBWY!

the last jedi
03-25-2002, 03:50 PM
:mad: I believe that most of the buy outs on the shelf's are from alot of 2nd hand dealer's, They buy them at $6.44 and then sell them for alot more. I know this because I see it alot. I try to tell people not to buy from 2nd hand dealer's, so this act will stop. the second hand dealer's are not true collecter's and don't really care about other collector's, They just want the fast buck. I really dont purchase from them at all because I see what they do. They clean the peg's and then sell for double. Sso becareful who you buy from fellow collector's. and dont let these leaches hurt are collecting fun!

03-25-2002, 04:07 PM
It's nice to see, C Richards, that other people are having difficulty finding the newer POTJ figures. I found an Imperial officer at the peg at Wal Mart at Saturday, and that made my day!

Sith Vicious
03-25-2002, 06:11 PM
I don't much care for the choices in this poll. Technically, yes the first person there deserves to buy what they want whether they are an army builder, scalper, collector, or kid. However, considering how many troop type figures I've never seen at retail in my area, I'm pretty bitter towards the army builders which hoard them all up.

03-25-2002, 06:20 PM
I don't like the idea of army building but I'm not stop any one from trying either. I fail to see why any one would want more then one of each figure. Variation collecting is beyond me. But variations like the battle droids (clean, dirty, ect) are fine.

03-25-2002, 09:03 PM
Originally posted by jedi master sal
Now I can't say to much as I seem to have good luck when it comes to army building. Just this past Friday I went to TRu and found all of the previews and bought 1 zam,r3,jango (I already have 1 of each on order somewhere else, but I also bought all of the clonetroopers, 7 to be exact (along with the 2 i have on order) My EPII army building has already been successful.

I believe that this is exactly the type of behavior that many of us deplore. Whether it's fair, ethical, or whatever is up for discussion amongst the philosophers, but the result is that many many collectors who wish to obtain just one of a figure may never be able to because of the selfish desires of a few. Army building is "successful" when you clean new figures off the pegs at the expense of others. That's not luck.

03-25-2002, 09:07 PM
i voted yes, i have always had a fantasy about getting hundreds of stormtroopers and lining them up...

03-26-2002, 10:32 AM
ok here's the scoop on building armies! i buy what i find on the shelves. I AM NOT A SCALPER nor am i an army builder! i buy stuff for 2 other people so i look like a scalping terd but i am not. matter of fact ijust returned my extra clone troopers and zam wessell that i purchased 3 weeks ago because i knew some other collector needs them. i still leave at least one of every figure unless they are gonna be hard to find which in my market they are. but i cannot stand when someone buys every figure on the rack for their own purposes. i do not agree with ebay or scalping on these websites. if more people would live the way most collectors do we would all have r2 w/ holo leias and ff weequays!!! but if it is darth vader or jango fett you might have to fight me over the last figure!!!!!HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

03-26-2002, 10:52 AM
I would like to make a clarification regarding my original post. While I still feel it's wrong to hoard all the figures for yourself, I don't see it being a problem unless there are others around you that want the same figure as you do. In that case a little bit of courtesy is in order!

I have seen people so rude that they have litterally taken a figure out of a kid's hands and were going to buy it. I couldn't stand by and let that happen so I interveiened and got the toy back for the kid!

There is no reason for people being rude when it comes time to getting the new figures and building an army. If worse comes to worse, do what I do....order a bunch of one figure through an online company! LEAVE WHAT IS ON THE STORE SHELVES FOR EVERYONE!

Now, I also mentioned the term "toy pirates" in my previous post. I would like to break down my classification of the toy collecting community.

1.) Toy Collectors - a lot of people consider themselves collectors. They generally will buy 2 or so copies of a figure, but tend not to hoarde any and all things they find. I have found that many of my fellow collectors are very friendly and happy to help you if you help them back!

2.) Toy Sellers - While fewer people fall into this catagory, many of them I have met are still relatively easy to get along with and do not attempt to be so edgy and will not mark up the price of the figure they re-sell to high amounts.

3.) Toy Pirates - These are the worst of all 3. These are the people that you see standing outside of Target, Wal-Mart, Toys R Us, K-Mart, etc EVERY DAY to grab any and everything in their line of site. They are very rude people and will take all they can get, which does include taking items out of others baskets, out of peoples hands, etc. These are the people that give everyone else a hard time as they buy all the see and then re-sell the toys at highly inflated prices hoping to cash in and make a large profit margin!

I personally know many toy pirates (being an ex-target employee I id'ed a lot of them). They sell at local shows and flea markets and I make it a point to pass them by and NOT patronize their way of obtaining figures.

Thanks for letting me express my point of view, and to all collectors... GOOD LUCK!

May the force be with us!

03-26-2002, 12:44 PM
I feel very strongly about this... I say wait until others have a fair shake at the pegs. Once that has happened... still divvy up your collecting to various stores as not to deplete one of its entire stock. I could just about punch anyone who has made MY life so difficult for having filched all the Jangos in the Cleveland area.

03-26-2002, 01:18 PM
Originally posted by JEDIpartnr
I feel very strongly about this... I say wait until others have a fair shake at the pegs. Once that has happened... still divvy up your collecting to various stores as not to deplete one of its entire stock. I could just about punch anyone who has made MY life so difficult for having filched all the Jangos in the Cleveland area.

HERE HERE! that happened to me recently, some very selfish person horded ALL the new figs that were on the pegs while I was standing right there just trying to get one of each. They had at least 20 in their hands. I just don't understand people's selfishness!

03-26-2002, 01:35 PM
I used to go early to find figs. Not because I wanted to buy them out, but because I rarely find anything during the later hours. I have never bought more than one of any NEW figure.

So, on one special occasion while a friend and I are waiting in front of Toy's R Us, I noticed an older guy in a "River City Collectibles" shirt (yes, really) arrive at the store about 2 minutes to opening. Said guy proceded to work his way to the front of the line, cutting in front of kids and other collectors.

I say- "Hey buddy, there's a line and the end is down there."

He doesn't so much as look at me.

I say again- "We've all been here for awhile, get to the back dude."

This time he glances at me and grunts.

I say- "Moron."

He says nothing.

Who says there is no justice? When the manager opens the doors, he tells A-hole Shopowner that he's not getting in until everyone else does. A-hole shopowner then has a mild temper tantrum. I smile as we walk past him.

My friend and I go to the Star Wars after stopping briefly at the MacFarlane stuff. We waited too long. A-hole shopowner had apparently B-lined to the SW stuff and gotten there first. He was filling a basket with (then) hard to find Snowtroopers and Imperial Guards. He must have had 10 each. I already had one of each.

I say- "Give me a break, you're not going to buy all of those, are you?"

He says- "Well you're not gettin any."

I say- "I dont give a sh-t if we get one, but you wouldn't want any KIDS to get one I guess, huh?

He says- "They can get one at my store."

My friend says- "What, for 30 bucks?!?"

A-hole shopowner says- "They can pay market value if they want one."

I say- "Market value is $5.99"

He says nothing, gets up and walks the long way around us. We laugh(It's not like we're going to beat him up over toys).

Insted, we find the manager and tell about A-hole shopowner.

We see him got to the checkout where he FLATLY refuses to sell A-hole shopwner anything. Boy was he ****ed.

So here's what I have done about scalpers-
A) When I see hard to find figs, I dog ear a few(not all) on the corner of the package. That way guys who buy them for collector value or resale don't want them.

B) When I build and army, I wait until the figures are old or show up in bargain bins.

C) Occassionally I've found figs hidden away inside of other toys or in other sections of the store. I take them out and put them prominently on the front of the display.

So remember kids, be fair to your fellow collector. Instant kharma can suck. And if you're buying them for value, stop, go to Merril Lynch and invest in STOCK and MUTUAL FUNDS. The longterm returns of it will be much greater than any toy will EVER be.

03-26-2002, 01:51 PM
Originally posted by TheCivilCollector
And if you're buying them for value, stop, go to Merril Lynch and invest in STOCK and MUTUAL FUNDS. The longterm returns of it will be much greater than any toy will EVER be.

hehe TRUE ENOUGH - just a tad investment in Microsoft will make you worth way more than your toys (even vintage ones) but I think there are two kinds of people who buy toys so this really won't make a difference...

1. People who buy one to open and one to keep carded - NOT for it's future value but for trading or hanging on the wall like others do paintings - this also includes those who buy more than one to open to build their armies for fun and game playing and just all out being a kid

2. People who buy to resale them at higher prices...we all know these people as spineless scalpers but this also includes people who horde every new figure on the peg for god only knows what reason.

:crazed: :crazed: :crazed: :crazed: :crazed:

03-26-2002, 01:57 PM
I think army building is ultimately dangerous to the future of this hobby. Here's why: I got into this hobby 25 years ago. I was 5 years old. I was able, with Mom and Dad driving me to the mall once a month, to complete the entire collection of vintage figures produced from 1978-1985. No problems. I found every figure I wanted. This was before I had my own driver's license.

Flash forward 25 years to 2002. Why is it so difficult now? Cleaning the pegs for army building, scalping, or any other purposes is gonna quickly turn off the future bearers of this hobby's torch - kids. I defy any average fourth grader to complete their POTJ collection without resorting to the secondary market. It is impossible, and awfully unfair.

So here's the deal - yeah you can build your $6.99 a pop armies, but in the long run, alot of kids who are just as deserving are gonna bail out. The demand goes down, and Hasbro calls it quits. No more Star Wars figures. Think it won't happen? I'm not so sure.

So army builders, please wait until the figures become more available. Collector frustration is poisonous to the future vitality of any hobby.

03-26-2002, 02:02 PM
C. Richards, I like your classification system on the toy buyer. I couldn't have come up with a better system myself!

Civil Collector, there used to be a real BIG guy (wide as a Volkswagon) who made the collecting circuit with his friends. He would be intentionally slow through the doors so his buddies to run back to the aisle and see what was new!

Fortunately, I know most of the fellow collectors in my immediate area by sight. In the last two years, though, they've really dropped off, and some have quit collecting SW all together.

There was one guy who had a booth at the local flea market who used to send his two sons -- grown men! -- out every day to specific stores looking for hot items.

03-26-2002, 02:06 PM
There is a woman who buys figures in my area. I have seen her CLEAR ALL THE PEGS by putting the figures into her shopping cart(s). She then goes through every last one to find the ones she wants. If you even look at her cart, she starts yelling at you. You have to wait and wait and wait until she is done just to get at the figures. I've called the manager on her a couple times. He told her that he is quite aware that she is not buying all of the figures in her cart, so she needs to make them available to the rest of the shoppers. Oooh! I swear she looked at me like she was putting a curse on me or something!!!

03-26-2002, 03:39 PM
At my local Wal-Mart it used to be impossible to build any army of any kind because of the employees. One in particular used to buy every new figure as she stocked them (I'm not sure they were even making it to the floor some days), not because she collected them, but because her son owns a comic book shop. With her Wal-Mart discount and his markup, they made quite a bit of money selling SW figures to the local kids at 2X to 3X the price. I found a way to beat her system though. I started going to the store at 11 or 12 at night after the pallets of new product were put out to be stocked. I found the cases of SW figures and with my trusty knife, raided the cases before she could. An employee once stopped me and asked what I was looking for and then helped me find it. He told me where all the figures were going and how much he hated her, because he could never find any collectible he wanted. Eventually she quit and there were figures for everyone. Now they always stock 3 to 4 cases of everything at a time and everyone gets their fill. I guess I'm lucky now, but I had my days of internet ordering and waiting. I am proud to say that I never bought a scalped figure from the infamous Comic Shop.

03-26-2002, 04:06 PM
Well, I always only get 1 of a figure when they first come out. I open everything so I only need one FX-7, Amanaman, etc. For army builders though, I only get 1 when they first come out. If I see there is a lot, I might pick up 2. But POTJ didn't have too many army builders so it wasn't really an issue.

I hate scalpers, especially ones that are ignorant and selfish. I've gotten into some trouble back in the day when Star Wars scalping was at its highest. I used to get quite physical with scalpers at TRUs and Wal-Marts. I'd see them put everything into there cart, and I'd do stuff like grab items out of his cart and smash the cards, key the scalpers cars, etc. I don't condone what I did, but they used to really **** me off.

Once I saw a guy take a figure right out of some kids hand! Suffice to say I'm banned from that particular Wal-Mart and so is that guy.

Luckily it isn't so much of a problem anymore around here at least.

jedi master sal
03-26-2002, 04:15 PM
I take great offense at this. You didn't even bother to quote my whole message thereby giving others the impression I'm something I'm not. Go and read for yourself, I said I was sharing some with a friend and also that if I see someone else who needs one, be it collector or kid I readily give them one of the multiples in hand. I do not go early and therfore can only get those "Lucky" finds every once in a great while and in this case it was 7:30 at night on a FRIDAY when many collectors and kids with parents are shopping to. If I got there first so be it. In my area there are scalpers aplenty and if I don't get some for me and my circle of friends then how do you expect me to get them. I do not shop on-line with the rare exception of the fan club and will never buy from E-bay. I don't want to wait, that is part of the fun of collecting and this is still a free country as far as I last knew. Now I'm not defending the scalper but if they have the time to get there before us oh well just dont buy from those high priced scum. that is the only way I can see the market drop out for scalpers. but not everyone is going to see it that way and there will always be those will buy from scalpers because they couldn't find a figure right then and there. I have been guilty of this myself a total of three times and have refused scalpers ever since. but to say my behavior is deplorable is quite unjust. If a scalper would have got there 2 minutes before me ALL of the figs (not just the clonetroopers) would have been gone. again look at my previous post. I only got 1 ea of ZAM, R3, Jango and left the multitude of other figs for other patrons. As for the Clone troopers I have no intention of selling these and I want to make a point as to why I bought all of them: EPI "clean" battle droids were and still are scarce in my area. these were the only variation I wanted to Army build so I waited for the price to come down instead of building right then. Not only could I not find any at lowers prices, I couldn't find any AT ALL. So, my experience requires me to by when I see or I may never get at all. I'm sure many of you have bought that figure/s that you really couldn't afford at the time but got anyway because you knew of the scarcity or rarity of the item. I will not allow this to happen to me again. I think either you (stillakid) may be jealous of the fact that I got so many and (maybe?) you haven't got any or your being anal about the whole thing. again this bears repeating, I shared 2 of my clonetroopers with a fellow collector and if another collector or kid was there at the time of my purchase and wanted one I would have gladly given one to them. As far as the expense of others I have been collecting for 25 years and never have I seen so much whining when it comes to this issue. I have shared many finds with friends over the years so just because I score this one time and metion it you make me out to be a monster. (again, i shared 2 of the CT's with a friend or did you forget that, oh that's right you deliberately did)
So without saying anything else that will get me censored, I will leave it at that.

Originally posted by stillakid

I believe that this is exactly the type of behavior that many of us deplore. Whether it's fair, ethical, or whatever is up for discussion amongst the philosophers, but the result is that many many collectors who wish to obtain just one of a figure may never be able to because of the selfish desires of a few. Army building is "successful" when you clean new figures off the pegs at the expense of others. That's not luck.

03-26-2002, 04:47 PM
OK, watch the personal attacks guys. If you want to hit at someone, I'm here with 20 Clone Troopers (half bought online though).

My next poll is going to look at what people HONESTLY bought, and what they actually WANT.

Next week we will devulge into how many of you out there have "Emperor's Arrival" scenes set up, and how you got that many Death Star Troopers, etc... besides what you plan on doing with Clone Troopers, Geonosian Warriors, etc.

My hobby (as in what I like to do with my Star Wars figures) is to recreate the movies with my toys in standing dioramas, or at least ones I have already set up or hope to set up in the near future. I also have something like 32 Gungan Warriors, and the next poll will let us all "count our collections out." We'll see who here is actually practicing what they preach.

It's no different if you started Troop Building with Clearance CommTech Stormtroopers guys - a lot of people wanted them - and armies of them. They were harder to find at their initial release at regular prices, so just because they were on Clearance doesn't mean its suddenly MORE ethical to army build then...

Meanwhile, I'm no angel. I admit my goal has been about 25 Clone Troopers in the Sneak Preview Category, and then wait for a "clean" and non-action posed figure to do a "Clones Arrival scene."

Meanwhile, some people didn't like the choices I offered to vote on in this subject.

I offered one option that says if you get there - buy all you can afford basically (if you are army building).

Another option stated that those buying that quantity are under suspicion of doing it for profit (scalping, hoarding for later resale, etc.)

Finally, the last option basically says that the collector with other priorities or commitments, such as being at school or work, or wanting to sleep, feels that distribution should be adequate (or customers should behave themselves) so that they can find figures in the store at their leisure.

If you army build, but "play fair" by NOT doing it all at once, I think you might like the third option. But if you feel there should have been a fourth option, please suggest it to me. I do aim to improve the polls, though I think you guys have really liked this series so far - you're discussing it an awful lot and that's great. We're learning about each other.

Unfortunately, army building takes its toll on what's on the racks. Most stores with figures from the preview wave left have only R3-T7 and Zam Wessel. At this point I'm willing to explain away Fett's disappearance to scalping, as well as the signature look's popularity with even those who do NOT collect Star Wars figures, but enjoy Star Wars and the occasional novelty. (kids would go for Fett first, too)

But the Clone Trooper is clearly an army builder. Being bought at a 3-1 ration to Zam or R3 from each case (an assumption, granted) stores are left over with "cases" full of Star Wars figures from an assortment that includes army builders, and they won't order more, because they have only 1 or 2 figures, but tons of the same one. Inventory shows they have 60 Star Wars figures in stock, and they do: 45 Zams and 15 R3-T7's.

Well, say I didn't have MY Clone Troopers: going to the stores NOW would be convenient, wouldn't it? (sarcastic)

Knowing how they will be sought after (the Troopers), other army builders and scalpers are out after them, too.

If I did not buy 10 CloneTroopers at that one time my Wal*Mart got them (my friend bought the 2 others), they might have just as likely landed in the hands of one of those HotWheels guys that scalp Star Wars (and were there that morning - in the isle over by their little cars).

However, since then, my demand satisfied for the most part (I still plan to buy 5 more) I am staying OUT of the stores. Other buddies have told me they are getting more shipments, so I can assume other a) collectors b) army builders, or c) scalpers are now getting them. I don't know. I'm sleeping until the next wave hits or I decide to buy my last 5...

But others in the SanDiego area are getting Clone Troopers..

Meanwhile, the Republic Gunship, a vehicle I may plan to buy 3 of, will release in the Fall. It holds 10 (TEN) Clone Troopers by itself. While I probably will put 5 in each of mine (barring different Clone Trooper figures take their "seats,"), what are those of you planning to buy and OPEN this ship going to do about Crewing it???

Sith Vicious
03-26-2002, 05:23 PM
In regards to the poll choices, I think my main objection is in the use of the word "deserve" in the question and the third option. As I said in my first post, the first one there technically deserves the figures, but since I've been screwed over by army builders so many times, I certainly don't like the practice. On the other hand, I'm not going to rag on anyone who's into army building. I'm sure there are plenty of little kids who hate adult Star Wars collectors for denying them figures, so who am I to say I'm more ethical than an army builder.

03-26-2002, 05:52 PM
Originally posted by jedi master sal
I have been collecting for 25 years and never have I seen so much whining when it comes to this issue.

Gosh I sure remember when it used to be so easy to collect the good ol' vintage figs...I was always able to get what I wanted, when I wanted and how ever many I wanted. And most of the terms we use today in collecting didn't even exist back then. All I can do is just sit back, be thankful for the SW films and the SW memorabilia I do have and laugh. Of course I will always actively collect but I'm for sure going to be mellow about it when I'm at the stores. It's actually pretty fun for me because so many guys I meet while collecting and going to shows are surprised that a "girl" likes this stuff. Again I just laugh and enjoy all the wonderful things and people that come out of SW.

Good luck to all. Patience in this case truly is a virtue! :)

03-26-2002, 10:54 PM
To Tycho, JM Sal and all the other army builders out there: God Bless You!

1. If your lucky enough to find the quantity of the fig's you want and you have the $ to spend, buy all you want. You stated in your respective posts that you were considerate to your bud's/fellow collectors who were in the store and shared.

2. Supply and Demand. While, in the short run, it may inconvenience other collectors that there are so many left over Zam's and R3's, Hasbro can better plan for future figure quantities and choices (of what fig's to produce). I'll put out there as examples the 4 variants of the basic Battle Droid, plus all the others that have come since, and also the news of the new army builder packs that I've heard about (2 new Endor reb Soldiers, the Stormie 4 packs, etc). If it weren't for the army builders we probably wouldn't have these.

There will be plenty of times in the future that any of us will go into a store and not find the figures we want. And someone will always end up buying the last one(except for the bin of E1 Maul's at my local TRU:) ).

03-27-2002, 03:48 AM
Who doesn't want an army of Stormtroopers, Clonetroopers, etc.? They were designed to appear in groups of two or more.

However, my opinion stands. I haven't passed judgement on the ethics of army building behavior with either new releases or those figures that are considered "older." Simply, cleaning new figures off the shelves for your own purposes keeps product out of the hands of others who haven't had the opportunity to acquire product for one reason or another. Guilt is your own business, but it doesn't change the fact that it's a selfish act.

No, I don't have any of the new figures, and no, I don't feel the slightest bit jealous about it. I began ordering figures online sometime last year after it became nearly impossible to find even the most basic figures in retail stores...not to mention army building types which were actually as close to impossible to find as you can get without calling it an absolute. I've casually looked here and there for the Preview figures, finding nothing, but never expecting anything either, after reading some of the posts here. Especially army builders, such as Clone Troopers. There doesn't seem to be much point in driving around town only to be frustrated that the pegs have been cleared of all the Clone Troopers because some "collector" needed to finish off his army before the movie even hit the theaters.

Someone else mentioned the kids and was totally correct. How many kids only get the chance to visit stores after school on weekdays, if they're lucky, and most likely on weekends with their Mom's? What do you suppose they'll find? Based on the above posts, I gather the best they can do is find 1 or 2 of the newest figures with nary a chance to obtain the rest. Collector's may just yet create the paradoxal situation of killing off their own hobby.

03-27-2002, 04:29 AM
Well, I'm guilty as charged with army building.

And I agree with Stillakid about the paradox of collectors ruining some of the enjoyment of their own hobby.

As long as the figures are selling to someone though, Hasbro will keep seeing it profitable to make them.

However, I do defend the army building collector who goes out to the stores just before closing, or like myself, before they open in the morning, because I've seen "my leavings" being combed over by scalpers - so the stuff won't be there for kids in the afternoon until the scalpers and army builders both are both saturated. (as I am - I could use maybe 5 more, but I'm not actively pursuing that).

For me and Clone Troopers, well - I'm out of the picture now. Some other army builder can go at it. But it would seem likely that in reality, there are more collectors of just one or two of each figure, than those raising infantry platoons.

As long as any of these types of collectors are not patronizing scalpers, there WILL be more for everyone else. I strongly recommend not encouraging the secondary market.

Now eventually Gungan Warriors started sitting on shelves. Eventually, the limited pose of the Clone Trooper might.

The other solution is to keep production of this figure high, and / or put out whole cases of him.

I do want kids to be able to get them, but what other solution gaurantees this will happen?

I also am not at the toy stores at all during the days or evenings, so I don't know for sure, but I think adult collectors make up Hasbro's market by over 50%. I'm not sure how we get good statistics on this. I'd love to look over Hasbro's market research...

jedi master sal
03-27-2002, 08:17 AM
I put a great deal of effort to find new figs and if some others don't then that clearly explains why they don't have the figs they want. I think it comes down to dedication to your collecting habits. My biggest example is one most recent, and here it goes. On March 8th I happened to have a day off from work. I made a doctor's appointment previous for this day and after seeing the doctor (which was about 2:30pm) I started what I can only describe as a grand tour. I live in Pittsburgh and started my hunt in the south hills (which is the area in Pittsburgh I live) then took a drive down to Washington, PA from there to Uniontown, PA then Connelsville, a city that begins with a B that I can't remember at this time, Greensburg, Monroeville, North Hills, Cranberry and then finally home. I stopped at EVERY TRU, Wal*mart, K-Mart, KB, and Target along the way..... guess what I found NOTHING. So, I feel my dedication to my hobby and the fact that I can afford (at this time) to buy what I want should not be ATTACKED by words such as deplorable. Along the way I also bought toys for my fiancee who collects other lines, filled up with gas, stopped for food TWICE, bought from two roadside shops and finally made a payment on a layaway at my local Wal*Mart. I am clearly helping this economy when it needs a boost. So if others think my collecting habits are unfair SO BE IT. I served this great country for 5 years in the NAVY (during DESERT shield/storm (on land at a naval hospital just outside Jubail, Saudi Arabia. To think that I was serving for some people who quabble over the fact that I buy in mass when I see the opportunity, is wrong. To you I say NO, this is the AMERICAN way. LIFE LIBERTY and the PURSUIT of HAPPINESS!

03-27-2002, 01:05 PM
Well I also can agree with Jedi Master Sal and I too have made the effort of some full-blown "pilgrimage" to find figures only to turn up empty handed.

Going first thing in the moring seems to be the best way for me. I go when I'm alerted stuff is shipping, and stop when I've bought all the quantity I want. Then I wait for new stuff.

In that vein, this morning friends of mine in my collecting group got:

Boba Fett
Tusken Raider Mother
Plo Koon (Arena Battle)
Battle Droid (Geonosis)
Captain Typho



The snowspeeder was also there, but our group doesn't want it.

Apparently there were 3 of each figure, and 2 of each vehicle (in addition to more Jedi Starfighters).

My group wiped them out and we share amongst each other, so I should get 1 of each of the figures tonight, but there were not enough TIE Bombers to go around. Next couple of days. I'd go at 11:30pm or 6:45am if I were you!

Early birds WILL get the worms!

But also note that the Episode 2 soundtrack is available on certain underground music trading sites as well! I've heard it and it is awesome! The best of any of the movies yet!

03-27-2002, 05:43 PM
The assumption seems to be that the next guy that walks in after you (generic "you") will be a scalper...so you (generic "you") are doing the rest of us a favor by cleaning off the shelves so he (the scalper) won't be able to take any of it.

The bonus is that you (generic "you") get everything you want immediately. You may also be interfering with scalpers intentions.

However, a better method to do that would be for everyone to refuse to buy from them in the first place. That would stop their incentive to horde the figures and leave plenty on the shelves for the real customers, assuming that "army builders" don't continue to take advantage of the situation and horde the figures themselves.

03-27-2002, 06:05 PM
Well, this is me talking personally:

If you live in San Diego and you shop at my stores and you want them - then get to the store when I do or wait for me to finish. I figure out well in advance how many figures I am going to use for my dioramas.

That includes 15 Jango Fetts actually, though I plan to divide that amount up between different figures of him and I only bought 5 of the current preview figure.

If you are at my store at the same time I am, I'll share with you, or however many people want Star Wars figures at that time.

If there were 10 Clone Troopers, and 2 "of us," I'd offer you half of them. If you only wanted 2 (one to open, one to keep) - fine, I'll buy the other 8 until I have 25 total. Then you won't see me in "your store" until the next new wave of figures comes out.

Since I share with my own collecting club - I may not be able to keep all 8 of them until all our group has enough (though they may have to find me figures later from the stores they cover). But I am sharing and helping - first myself for sure - and then as many others as I can assure myself is actually possible (for my local area).

I lost out on Naboo Royal Guards (in a way) - this is the removeable helmet one. I wanted 35 of them total. Roughly 5 of them to protect the Queen in each scene I set up - Starship, Asscension Guns, Capturing Nute Gunray, the Throne Room, and the Hanger Battle. I didn't always want to get out of bed an hour earlier or I didn't try enough stores - don't really remember.

Anyway I "only" have 21 NRG's (and I know some of you are rolling your eyes right now) but Hasbro could have made over $100 more dollars off me (at approx. 7 per figure) had they distributed better.

So yeah, I'll buy 14 NRG's on site for an equitable price.

If you can't make it to the stores at opening, go right before closing. Make connections, hook up with other collectors, or just be patient and hope for the best.

Army Builders are not out to ruin the hobby for others (that they haven't even met), but they are trying to enjoy it in their own way. And yes, fortunately, they are a blight on Scalpers!!!

But Army Builders are also not trying to control all the distribution of army building figures. If you have rows of Stormtroopers, 9 troops per row, 10 rows deep, you won't need the 91st CommTech. There are stopping points for Army Builders and we are collectors, so ask us, and I think most of us will share with you "Doubles-Takers", or "Solo-Hunters."

And I stress what Stillakid said: don't patronize scalpers!

I could get my 14 Naboo Royal Guards right now for $15 each - but sorry - I'm not paying that. The guy that bought those to scalp might have made me suffer - but I'm not going to help him!

03-27-2002, 06:22 PM
Collecting partnerships, like Tycho's, I can understand. A bunch of people, helping one another out. It makes sense when done with responsibility without the intention of cleaning out inventory.

Ultimately, I think that the problem starts with Hasbro, producing too few of the army builder figures, whatever they may be, and distributing them without any sense of fairness. The molds have already been made, so it shouldn't take a lot of effort to keep churning some out on a regular basis. Or even, offer a direct-sales approach for people who want to order 25, 50, or a 100 or more. No packaging, just a box of loose figures shipped directly to you from the factory.

Bobby Fett
03-27-2002, 06:49 PM
Live and let die, I always say.

I buy one of each to open and dsiplay. I buy an extra one of select figures to display in the package. I rarely see two of the figures I want at the same time.

03-27-2002, 08:11 PM
I think Hasbro's production and distribution policies are an out right Conspiracy...of what I have yet to find out


And when I do, I'll let everyone know.

Seriously though as Stillakid mentioned you would think they would have the smarts to distribute "army" type figures a'plenty. They should know by now (1995) that those types of figures most always get purchased, quickly! So I really think they are doing some things (distribution techniques) on purpose for God only knows what reasons!

03-27-2002, 09:57 PM
Some of that has been reflected:

we are getting Stormtrooper 4-packs from the Fan Club very shortly (this year). They ARE NOT new figures really - just piles of them - which is all we wanted. Buy 25 of these, and you have 100 Troopers, if that is your fancy. Keeping them in production and in stock at the Fan Club, is one way to do this.

The Endor Rebel Soldier (new ones) will also see distribution this year (although I think each variation is sold separately).

The Imperial Officer and Rebel Fleet Trooper are supposed to re-ship on GREEN POTJ cards before April 23 (don't hold your breath) and be all new head sculpts - maybe the old Alderaanian Seargeant and a blonde-haired Imperial Poster Boy. Both figures I want.

The "Army Builder" POTJ assortment came out - maybe too late though - with Coruscant Guards, Gungans, Mon Calamarians, Security Droids, and Tuskens (I think - didn't need any of it when it shipped, so I'm not sure what they put in there). Duros and Tesseks, and R2Q5's might've been more useful... but they tried.:rolleyes:

I think that some of these figures could have also been offered in multi-packs, though none moreso than the Bikerscout and the Sandtrooper with variations on the shoulder pauldron.

I do not include the Calamarian or the Coruscant Guard in that category though -and as a side note, the first suffered in that it was barely a new figure but a repainted Ackbar to most people, and even diorama makers like myself only needed about 4 of them. The second - well, once it became known that Palpatine would order the Guards to wear the more familiar Crimson red - well, Palpatine forgot to tell Hasbro.;) Furthermore, the Coruscant Guard was not that great of figure and had severely limited poses possible with those long sleeves of his. Had he been slightly taller too...oh well. This is not a figure review column.

But with Imperial figures especially, what with the Empire's outfits being so cool, everyone might see how setting up platoons of soldiers might have appeal. Thus figures like the Death Star Trooper, as well as the newer movie army builders like the Gungan or Naboo Royal Guard (and Security), should see offerings in multipacks like had been suggested.

Hasbro is starting to get the picture, but the response is slow, if getting better.

03-28-2002, 08:47 AM
I'm getting a headache and eye strain. I'll wait for the next poll to come along.

03-28-2002, 12:33 PM
Well I have an amusing little anecdote to go along with this thread now.

This morning on my way home from class, I stopped by the Wal-Mart on the way just to check. They had gotten in a few more cases of the preview figs. Now this is at least the second time that I know of that the got in the preview figs. They had about 4 or 5 of each figure. They had 4 clonetroopers. I didn't have a clonetrooper yet. So I bought 3. I'm an army builder, so I wanted more than 1 of a troop type. I left one however for the next guy. I would've liked to get the last clonetrooper, but I felt lucky that I found them at all. However, if I go back next time and the figure is still there, I will probably buy it.

03-28-2002, 01:14 PM
You all know my feelings about building an army. If ther figures exist, and you are considerate to leave some for others..... go for it.

What I don't endorse is these pirates raiding the stores when they open to get the newest and greatest of the batch! Sure, the early bird gets the worm, but if the shoe was on the other foot, and these pirates couldn't get what they wanted, would they just go with the flow? NO WAY! Would they *****? Hell yeah!

Real life example... It's no big secret that I used to work for Target. While I was there, there were several occasions where I was privy to the new cases of STAR WARS figures. However, I had worked out a plan with the store manager. He'd let me open the cases, and pull what I wanted....but I could only take one of each figure I wanted, and I HAD TO PUT THE REST OF THE CASE ON THE SHELVES. If there wasn't any room on the shelves for the toys, then I couldn't get them. It was a very fair agreement and let's face it....it kept everyone happy. I got the figures I wanted, and others were able to get what they wanted to.

Last example was when I was with Target, the 12" Luke and Wampa was coming out. Being my birthday, my folks had me grab one and put it aside so they could get it and give it to me as my gift. Before the store opened, I got mine and put it under my register. Now...at the same time, the Store Manager on duty was going out to address the crowd and had them form a line. He then passed out tickets for the Luke and Wampa sets. We got in like 38 sets, and 3 were taken by employees, I being one of them. The Manager made it very clear that if you had a ticket you MIGHT get one...but supply was limited and when they were gone...they're gone.

All the toys went in 10 minutes or less! When it came for #36 to get the toy....he was unfortunately out of luck. He literally began bawling like a baby screaming he wanted a Luke and Wampa. Short thereafter, another person yelled out that another Target near-by had a bunch left, and this entire convoy of at least 20 - 30 people raced out of the store, jumped into their cars and raced for the said Target.

Collecting is supposed to be fun, but when you meet people like I have described over my previous posts, the fun is quickly taken out!

I hope you all have luck in finding what you want and need to build your sets! Good luck and MAY THE FORCE BE WITH YOU!

03-28-2002, 03:05 PM
I disagree about the fun being taken out of it. The HUNT is always a gamble. If you go- are you going to get anything?

In your example with the Wampa 12", the earlier they got there, the more effort they were making. Thus the earlier they got there before the store opened, as obviously there was a line, then the more "deserving" they were.

Kind of like, if you want it THAT bad - prove it!

But were the 38 people there in line all COLLECTORS? Possibly, but likely not. And were some of them chasing duplicates? (Double-Takers - one to open, one to keep packaged?)

I know it was probably the first Official Release Date for the Wampa, but I didn't go. Why? As I became a familiar face at my stores I shopped at, I was friendly to people and managers asked what I did with my toys. So I brought them photos of my dioramas I make, which include loose 12". I have way too many LOOSE figures to be scalping them - so (maybe) consequently, I get my stuff right out of the backrooms as soon as most new items first come in. I got ALL the Episode 2 stuff already, right? (just not the quantity I need for my scenes). Almost all of it came from local stores.

So again, I could have been one of "the 38," as could OTHER PEOPLE who were already getting multiples. The reason I point this out is because when someone at YOUR TARGET said another store had more of them, not only the 3 people who didn't get one head over there, but 20 of the same bunch did.

Let's just say they all got one at the next Target for argument's sake. Then 17 of these customers already have 2 Wampa 12"s at approximately 8:45am and it could be over a week or so before ANY OTHER COLLECTOR WHO JUST WANTS THEIR FIRST ONE gets this exclusive.

Amongst these 17 are "Double-Takers," who like Army Builders, do inconvenience the "Solo-Shoppers," but you know there had to be Scalpers! I saw these Wampas going for at least $75 dollars like the day after its first release.

But in our last poll on Collecting Etiquette, or Tips moreso in that case, we found that 23% of you would rather be sleeping. OK - you made your choice. People that want 2 or more got them, and the scalpers got theirs.

Those of you who go to work in the morning (as do I - though my schedule varies) can stop in the morning on the way if you get up about an hour earlier. Some of those people outside the stores in the morning are wearing suits and ties, police uniforms, mechanic coveralls, you name it. Sure, some of them have nothing better to do with their lives - but they can go back to sleep I suppose (after they take YOUR toys). But some do make the effort at greater inconvenience than others.

Hey - you watch the Just Found Section. You know if you keep going THIS week, you will get something (week of March 25, 2002). Everyone is finding stuff. Sleep in next week if it slows down (Most Wal*Marts are becoming aware they are not supposed to release E2 stuff now - but a lot of us early birds already have them :D )

For those of you who actually have to be AT WORK (not going to, but on the job) at 6:45 am, I strongly suggest online purchasing, and making friends in the toy isles to form local collecting networks. Most of my E2 stuff actually did NOT come from the Wal*Marts I cover in the morning for my group. I'm getting all my stuff from 2 or 3 other guys in my network. When my store gets stuff, I'll have to find things for them - that's how it works. Trade AT COST with people who also get YOU stuff. There's 8 people in my group - no one new can join unless they DELIVER - and then we really can deliver for them! We have all the stores in our COUNTY covered! Scalpers complain about US! He-he. True. I've heard it told to my face. But retail managers like people in my group, and the single random collector that happens to be there while one of us is, finds us to be sharing, considerate, and helpful - so long as we don't learn they are a scalper.

03-28-2002, 03:14 PM
You had a good point, Tycho. For my friends and myself, the HUNT is still the fun part. Yes, we are overjoyed when we find that hard-to-find figure but the HUNT is still a good time. Within the last month, I spent three hours on a Saturday morning looking for new figures. I didn't find anything; all I did was waste three hours and some gas but I had a good time.

And yes, I use Sir Steve's and other SW sites as a gauge as to when something new will hit my area. For example, the TIE bomber and snowspeeders reportedly found in San Diego in the last few days, it will be at least two week at the earliest before they are spotted in my area.

03-28-2002, 03:26 PM
I wanted to add something about retail distribution.

At the initial price (Wampa was $45 I think - retail), stores anticipate what they think they will sell, and order that quantity. Or Hasbro anticipates it and sends them that amount.

Note stores get exclusives and actually all 12" from Hasbro Direct. That division of the company does MAKE Star Wars, but they do not sell them the way the main line is sold. Stores get them for FREE as a merchandise loan, sort of to thank them for carrying the basic line. They have to pay Hasbro back for them eventually, but if they make a killing on Star Wars, they often negotiate what they pay based on what their next order of Star Wars entails - and how much they expand what they're buying.

Thus Captain Tarpals at $70. Only a certain amount could be stocked. At about $40 - which is all I'd garner it is worth to a 12" Collector, they all would have gone out the door to 38 people standing in line at 7:45 am. (well let's say it was something cooler than 12" Captain Tarpals for arguments sake - 12" Ephont Mon he-he...) But at the higher price, people will wait, scalpers will hesitate and Double-Takers will think twice ;)

Now, instead of having to be there at 7:45 am, you can equate an extra $30 for your time sleeping, and buy it at the higher price, or you can gamble again, and watch for the price drops. Target paid NOTHING for this exclusive. They will pay Hasbro back a set amount of their take. Maybe $12.44 - their typical rock-bottom price for clearancing exclusives.

So now the bargain hunter who deserves the lower end of the price range must learn Target's mark-down schedule and be there at 7:45 am on the morning (usually Wednesdays I think for markdowns) that the price comes down. (and hope the boxes have stayed mint for the past month if they want it in that good of shape). Again, the first "38 (?)" people there in the morning will get it. The rest of you should have been there, or paid $50 for it when it was sitting on the shelf.

Last thing I will say is: Target and Wal*Mart DO NOT CARE if you get your toys. It is an added attraction to a company that makes its money by also selling you your toilet paper, mouthwash, some groceries, video entertainment, socks and underwear, etc. There are things you need to buy there regardless of whether you get your toys. When Target has an exclusive Star Wars item, WE are more likely to get our petfood there than at Wal*Mart. That's all.

And that's why they don't really care about an April 23 shelf-release date for E2 or anything else. George Lucas is not buying his dogfood at your Wal*Mart. So nobody cares.

Fend for yourselves or band together. Distribution is not going to get any prettier. Smart case assortments are Hasbro's best way to determine army builders are available, as well as better planning their production runs on certain figures. That's all there is to it.

03-28-2002, 10:04 PM
Making friends in your area is a really good idea. One tip I have, if you hit a Target early one morning, and find the newest figures or whatnot, hang out for an hour or so, if you have the time to spare. Most collectors would be more than happy to buddy up to cover more ground. I've met some locals to me through SSG, and others by just hanging out at the aisles. If you want Star Wars merchandise that bad, make the initiative. That's the way the game is played.

Also, I always hit the stores about once a week in the morning, but every once in a while, a buddy of mine and myself will take one whole morning and just drive to all the stores. Now most of the time we end up with nada, but everyonce in a while, we hit the big score.

If you make the initiative, you should have a relatively easy time finding what you want.

jedi master sal
03-29-2002, 08:21 AM
In light of the recent feelings toward my collecting habits as view by certain individuals here (within this thread) I would like to say that not only do I have the 9 total Clonetroopers (7 from TRU and 2 from the fanclub) (2 of which I will share with a friend) I went into my local TRU yesterday (3/28/02) and found 10 more and you guessed it.... bought them all (with a nod to a certain poster here). I didn't touch any of the others previews and BTW this was at 7PM (NIGHT TIME FOR THOSE THAT MIGHT THINK I MISTYPED). If other collectors or scalpers or kids would have been there they could have got to these before me. I even went so far as to ask the stock guy when they were put out and he said that morning. AMPLE time for people to get their's. So, I really don't want to here it about the fact that I army build. Yes there is a small risk to me that the figures may eventually go on sale, but I am willing to take that risk. After being burned on more than one occasion from not buying when I first see it, I have learned my lesson. BTW, 3 of this new set of 10 are going to another collector friend of mine. This brings my total to 19, 5 of which are going to 2 others. Fair enough to me. I don't often run into other collectors but when I do, i try to make fast friends and see if they can be included in my group. Also, I always give them my business card with SSG's web address written on the back to bring in others fans to this site. I am a loyal fan to this site and do not view any others with exception to the "official site". Now just so any of you don't think I am a *** kisser, I say this to point out that I help to promote this site which has helped me in my collecting and overall enjoyment of SW. Especially while on the hunt. How many of you (This is directed mostly to those who think my "behavoir is deplorable" think about or actually do promote the site) I would hope that you mention it from time to time. With the volumes of information and breaking news we get here it would be nice from time to time to here an appreciative post to sir steve for what his site is doing for us.

This helps our site by becoming a bigger voice for the collecting world and maybe toy manufacturers will actually listen to us.

As to the volume of Clonetroopers I have, my need has been satiated and I won't buy anymore until the next sculpt. (still plenty of time for solo's, double takers, as well as kids to get what they want)

03-29-2002, 11:26 AM
Jedi Sal-

If your quote was aimed at me, in regards to promoting the site, I do my fair share. I don't have a problem with you cleaning house so to speak in that respect. You were there AFTER all the Toy Pirates had left...and there was pleanty of time for others to get what they wanted!

If this was the case all the time, then I wouldn't have a problem. I just have a problem with some of the people being so RUDE. I'm sure you are a very considerate collector, and trust me, if you and I were ever in a store together, and you had stuff I didn't and I the same, I'm sure we could work out a mutually benificial agreement!

I'm glad you were able to get so many of the clone troopers! I tried to build an army of older Stormtroopers when they were pleantiful, but 5 troopers don't make an army! :)

As to all the others, I thank you all for being considerate and also listening or rather reading my point of view.

Sith Vicious
03-30-2002, 07:57 PM
Now that I've got my hands on a Clonetrooper, I'm more mystified than ever by the army building thing. With a figure like the Commtech Stormtrooper, I can see the allure since it is fairly poseable, and can be put in a neutral stance. I've seen dioramas of Commtech troopers that I have to admit looked pretty nice. The Clonetrooper, on the other hand, is an entirely different story. I can't see putting it in more than two slightly different positions, and having a bunch of them in almost the exact same stance looks bizarre to me. Oh well, to each their own I guess.

03-30-2002, 08:06 PM
Although I feel strongly about the "first come, first serve basis" , I must also have a little respect for my many other fellow star wars collectors and allow them to buy the stuff too. If I bought everything up that would be rude and inconsiderate. I know I would feel pretty mad if i saw someone get all of a particular figure right in front of me! Show a little consideration my fellow collectors!

03-30-2002, 08:16 PM
Although I feel strongly about the "first come, first serve basis" , I must also have a little respect for my many other fellow star wars collectors and allow them to buy the stuff too. If I bought everything up that would be rude and inconsiderate. I know I would feel pretty mad if i saw someone get all of a particular figure right in front of me! Show a little consideration my fellow collectors!

03-31-2002, 02:49 AM
First, I just got 4 more Clones, so with 1 more, I'm out of THIS army building business and will get started on the Geonosian Warriors as they leak out to certain Wal*Marts.

However, I share with any person that is there and actually bother to ask before I proceed to the cashier with any "pile" I amount. If there were 4 people who wanted a Clone, I would have only bought 1. If there were 5, I might not have gotten any because I have so much. As it turns out, I was alone, so I bought the whole case worth (4 clones to a box).

As to the fact that they are one-to-two pose wonders and can't be positioned marching or standing at attention, nor turn at the waist... that's why out of possibly 100 Clone Troopers I may amount for my dioramas, only 1/4 of them will be this figure (for battle scenes only). This figure can shoot from a sniper type of position (crawling) too. It's pretty cool to put him like that.
Meanwhile, like I said, each Republic Gunship toy can hold up to 10 of them (though I will keep my crews around 5-7 and spread them around to use in different scenes or parts of scenes.

If they make various ranks and / or a one as poseable as the CommTech troopers, I will amount up to 75 more between all of those figures. By then there may be clearance sales, other discounts, and I'll be able to get some ships and playsets to "test set" my scenes and actually see how many figures will fit.

I have attached a SPOILER PICTURE of a scene I may want to recreate. Do not look at the image if you feel it will give away something of your movie experience. My opinion is: it does not. It's just one shot of a Clone Army preparing. Viewing it or not is your own responsibility.

Sith Vicious
03-31-2002, 09:37 AM
I think you're going to be waiting a long time before you get the clone army of your dreams. So far we haven't seen any plans for any new clonetrooper figures beyond the red clonetrooper. The red one is even less useful for army building, since it's just as posed as the preview one and I assume is some kind of commander which only appears in small numbers. After that I assume we're getting the yellow which could easily just be a repaint of one of the existing types and share all their problems. Sure it's possible that Hasbro will release some kind of hyper articulated white clonetrooper, but I wouldn't hold my breath. Look how long it took them to do the Commtech stormtrooper and how much greater the demand was for it.

03-31-2002, 03:49 PM
I'm new here, so bear with me. I really don't see a problem with people wanting to gather army builders for dioramas and the like. I usually offer the figures I find first up to any collectors that are in the aisle. Because I like to build dioramas, Ill pick up damaged packages in closeout bins. I don't like to crack mint packages to build my dioramas. So, if someone gets to the aisle before I do, and they just can't live without owning every Rebel Trooper or Imperial Officer on the shelf, so be it. I'm not going to start a fight over it. Sheesh, it's just an action figure. I like to collect `em, but it's not a big deal.
Now, if the subject were about variants, then that's a bit different. If you're picking up every frelling R2-Q5 because of the misspelling, and you're leaving none for anyone else, you and my foot are gonna meet.

"You are reckless."
"So was I, if you remember." -- Yoda/Obi-Wan, ESB

03-31-2002, 04:35 PM
Variations? Is that what it was about the R2Q5?

I don't pay much attention to variations unless it's like drilled into my head by my friends I help collect who HAVE to have something.

I just bought 2 (possibly 3) R2Q5's because I really didn't need anymore.

I want a ton of Astromechs to fill my dioramas, but all different colored ones. I got like four R4M9's and three R3-T7's. I'd likely buy about 1 to 3 of any others they come out with, though I'm hoping that is like maybe 10 more variations of astrodroids including R5's.

On the Death Star in ANH, you saw a red, blue, and green R3 unit.
(clear dome)

On Hoth there was a white with black head R4, and the Death StarII had an all-black one. (cone head)

R5D4 would be a popular resculpt, but so would an orange one from Mos Eisley, a black one from the Death Star II, an all red one from Yavin, and an all yellow one from the Queen's starship.

As for R2 units, a white/green R2-A6 would be nice, as would be a solid yellow one from Naboo.

So that's 12 astrodroids I want, not hoarding any particular type.

Give us 2 a year Hasbro, just like R4M9 and R3-T7 (and thanks for those!!!)

04-08-2002, 01:28 PM
do people deserve armies of our favorites?, sure
is it right for 1 person to grab quintuples of 1 figure when someone else that comes 2 minutes later gets none?i dont think so

04-26-2002, 11:15 PM
Well, I shared (see my other collector etiquette poll series posts) but I had no problem getting my army builders which included

15 Geonosians
4 Royal Guards (I should've bought 8 when I had the chance!)
Probably 20 Super Battle Droids (it's not like that is a challenge)
9 Clone Trooper Officers (or pilots, whatever they do)

I didn't need any Battle Droids with what I have amongst extras leftover from E1 sales - and the blast effects that come with Fett or Zam, etc, all fit on the guns of the old Battle Droids anyway.

Oh, I only wanted 4 Tusken Females, as I want a mix of them, my POTJ ones, and the new one, a '96 I had bought loose, and an extra from a Bantha I gave to a Nikto Skiff Guard for my Pod Race Arena scene.

How did you guys do with army building? Who got mad at an army builder?