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  1. #1

    Has sculpting reached its peak?

    Do you feel sculpting for the Star Wars Legacy line has reached its peak as far as detail is concerned? Or will the day come when 3 3/4 inch figure sculpts will have the same detail/articulation as Hot Toys?

  2. #2
    Quote Originally Posted by darthbooger View Post
    Do you feel sculpting for the Star Wars Legacy line has reached its peak as far as detail is concerned? Or will the day come when 3 3/4 inch figure sculpts will have the same detail/articulation as Hot Toys?
    I think it depends on the individual figures, but I think we're about there.... There's only so much detail you can get for the price vs. articulation vs. size equation. I think that the recent marvel, dc and 25th gijoe lines *may* have actually influenced the detail in some of the SW figures we're seeing these days.

  3. #3
    I think in some ways that the sculpting has declined. Sure, there is more articlation, but they are so focused on articulation that figures like Yarna or the new Death Star II Luke have so many visible, ugly joints that really detract from the figure in a neutral pose.

    And I really hate when they sculpt a hand so that it is posed in some way that can't hold a weapon. Stop giving the Jedi force poses!

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by Droid View Post
    I think in some ways that the sculpting has declined. Sure, there is more articlation, but they are so focused on articulation that figures like Yarna or the new Death Star II Luke have so many visible, ugly joints that really detract from the figure in a neutral pose.

    And I really hate when they sculpt a hand so that it is posed in some way that can't hold a weapon. Stop giving the Jedi force poses!
    Yes, good observation. The added joints in many cases has been detrimental to overall figures in some cases. The 25th gijoe line is infamous for having weird hand sculpts that prohibit a lot of figures from holding their weapons. It's like they can't find a happy medium..., and I agree about the jedi hand-force poses!

  5. #5
    I think it's difficult to sculpt "bare flesh" with so many joints. I also think they need to look at what is truly essential to the overall character and go from there. If they are going to do "force hand" poses, then just stick an interchangeable hand in with the figure. They come off easily anyhow!
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  6. #6
    Well I agree with both respondees so far. I'm sure it can only get so good in this scale, certainly it'll never approach Hot Toys level of detail. Sculpts today are great as long as they take care with the size and type of joints which unfortunately they don't always. DSII Luke is a clear example of oversized balljoints making the figure on the whole look fairly bizarre. I'm also not fond of the hinges they're using in the shoulders of a lot of figures now - very angular and they jut out in an ugly manner when a figures arms are raised. I don't know why Hasbro has started using these ugly hinges when they didn't and still don't on many other figures. Cost cutting? I dunno. I've also long being saying I generally dislike balljointed heads but thats a losing battle for me.

    Apart from these issues the detail going into the figures is great...again though it can be marred by ever-lowering standards when it comes to paint apps.

    But for the scale I think sculpting has peaked if only it would stay consistent.

  7. #7
    I think sculpting can be better, especially as the computerized process goes even further into the nano/fempto/atto scales, which will also help paint aps more and more. (Several smaller cuts or shaves will be better than one large gash or stamp) However, there is a limit to how accurate one can be given the scale. Until they come up with a way to put a 1/18th skeleton with complete tendons and ligaments and put the form over that, visible if not downright detracting joints are going to be a fact of life (sometimes more than others).
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  8. #8
    A 1:18 scale body is a lot different from a 1:6 body. Double-elbows and -knees look really bad at this scale, hinged wrist articulation bulks into the hand, mid-torso articulation has to have a thicker pin so a bigger groove to sit in. Until we get stronger materials cheap enough to deliver thinner designs that hold up to play, I think we've hit the ceiling. And I don't think we're going to get those materials anytime soon. Ultimately, I think in the nearish future, Hasbro will refine the sculpting process to be slightly more accurate in the face, to tighten up mistakes and to better hide articulation slightly, but there will always be some variance.

    My hope is they'll get more innovative on increasing the range of motion in the elbows and knees, using a single joint to go past 90 degrees - they've done it with knees on occasion, but the knee can get away with more because it's facing backwards.

    I get a little annoyed at this idea that Luke Jedi's joints are somehow bulky. The mismatched shoulders on the new DS2 Luke notwithstanding, I don't buy this at all. The elbow joint is a smooth straight line. The knees are straight on the sides as well, the only reason they're puffed up in the front and back is because that's how the pants looked in the costume with the boots over them:
    http://www.padawansguide.com/BMA/luke_rotj1.jpg
    I've got 3 different runs of this figure on my desk (TAC, TLC cut scene, TLC DS2) and I just don't see an issue there. I also have the Saga '04 ROTJ Luke here, and THAT figure has some fugly joints at elbows and lower legs.


    Devo makes an interesting point, deco is an area that can greatly affect the perception on a sculpt. I am very happy with the new Luke headsculpt and I'm fairly happy with the paint, but it can't go on either TAC or TLC '08 because they are painted different colors - TAC is especially bad since he's very tan with weird butterscotch hair. I think they're already getting better with deco in most areas, but the eyes are what they still need to tighten up across the board. Luke DS2's eyes are great, they're small and not too white, not too colorful, the eyebrows aren't too thick, but there are so many folks finding wonky off-center pupils that it's clearly not a fixed problem. There's a lot of figures with eyes gazing up, or big eyes, or overly bright eyes. There are still too many figures with thick eyebrows. I think that's the one area they still need to work on, and will take them another year or so to get right as the technology gets better, but they'll never have it locked down because of the low-cost nature of the finished product. Aka: what do you expect for eight bucks? (Mind you, I can dump a hundred bucks at a Sideshow figure and STILL not get the eyes right sometimes due to manufacturers' variance, but at least there they charge so damned much that they make good on replacements.)
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  9. #9
    I've never seen a Hot Toys/Hasbro comparison, but hey, one can hope!

    I believe that current Hasbro (sculpting) quality is being dictated by the economy. They are capable of more, but seem to have a business model where they can do 'X' Amt in terms of quality (translation: their bottom line in terms of cost). Personally, I am NOT impressed by many of their figures right now.

    By no means are we seeing their true potential currently.

    The best fig they've ever done in my book is the Vintage Bossk...in terms of paint, detail, articulation. Just a perfect figure in every way. But, that was at a higher price point.

    IF it were up to me, Hasbro would make a Super Vintage line - $10 -$15 retail with uber detail in every way. That would excite me (personally)
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  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by AmanaMatt View Post
    The best fig they've ever done in my book is the Vintage Bossk...in terms of paint, detail, articulation. Just a perfect figure in every way. But, that was at a higher price point.
    I wholeheartedly agree here, VTAC Bossk is the new standard by which all other figures are judged as far as I'm concerned.

    Quote Originally Posted by AmanaMatt View Post
    IF it were up to me, Hasbro would make a Super Vintage line - $10 -$15 retail with uber detail in every way. That would excite me (personally)
    I would actually be okay with that. Plus, I think it would be better if they significantly reduced the number of figures they produced each year. Not 40-60 new figures each year, I'm thinking more like 10-12 new figures a year. This would give them more time to perfect each figure to make it worth the higher price.

    Also, since I'm dreaming here, I would say that it's time to put realistic Prequel figures on hiatus for a few years. Focus solely on the OT and leave the prequel characters for the Clone Wars line.
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