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  1. #1

    SSG's Monthly Hasbro Q&A - April 8th

    "To J-hook or not to J-hook?", that is the question. And from it, we have Hasbro's answers to SSG questions for April 8th, 2010. Thanks again to Hasbro for the answers, to all the folks who sent in questions and especially those who voted on them. Here come Hasbro's answers.

    Hasbro Q&A for the week of April 8th, 2010

    SSG: With the reveal of the Vintage Collection cardbacks using the classic Kenner styling, there's one oddity which doesn't fit with modern retail. The previous Vintage-style cardbacks came in clamshells that had J-hooks, but this new line has no clamshells and the samples you've shown have no J-hooks, only punch-through hanger holes with plastic reinforcement on the back. Isn't this a risky gamble, making it harder for consumers to get to product and for employees trying to restock? Was this considered, and if so, why was the decision made to stay with the old-style hangers?

    Hasbro: It was not without discussion that we decided to do this, since we know that it could make getting at a figure on a peg behind several other figures somewhat tedious, and a potential risk for consumers pulling them off pegs forcefully. The decision was made to stay with the old-style punched because we feel the cards look best and most true to Vintage that way. They have been reinforced with a custom plastic tab to ensure that they won't be easily damaged by being pulled off pegs, but we still have the issue of impatient consumers not willing to take figures off to get to the one they want as well as for employees restocking.

    SSG: Snowspeeder Luke is an amazing figure, but collectors have numerous issues and are wondering if they might be addressed on a future re-release. Issues including the awkward hand poses, the wrong saber hilt (again), no lit lightsaber, no way to plug the saber hilt into the belt, no way to hook the grappling gun onto the belt, the thermal cap on the head that disappears and reappears throughout the character wearing this costume on Hoth and Dagobah, the raised helmet visor in the AT-AT attack, and even Luke not wearing his gloves in the costume on Dagobah. Let me state again, fans love this figure overall, it's just that they love it so much they've taken a hard look and see the issues as they stand. So, will any or all of those issues be addressed on a future re-release of this figure?

    Hasbro: We are glad to hear that you and many of the fans like the figure. Currently we do not have a plan to release another new Hoth Luke in the immediate future but we do plan on doing other Luke figures. We can look to address the lightsaber hilt issue. We do appreciate all the comments and feedback which helps us to improve our products and when we do revise the Hoth figure in the future we will definitely look at making some if not all the improvements you suggest.

    - -

    And our questions at CollectionStation.com:

    • The Dark Trooper, across its 4 figures and 3 phases, always seems to have underwhelming release scenarios. Both phase II releases (the '98 EU wave, and TAC's re-release Saga Legends wave) were headaches to track down; the phase III was spread across expensive exclusive sets so it cost $85 to build, and its repaint was canceled; and now the phase I is stuck in the end-of-the-line wave that has been repurposed to low-production TRU-exclusivity. Clearly, the Dark Trooper has among the worst luck of all Star Wars figures. Has there been any thought to releasing a multi-pack of the 3 Dark Trooper figures together so that collectors finally can army-build the characters they want? Or if that won't fly, maybe you could pack in that new and also hard-to-get Kyle Katarn figure with them and have a Dark Forces theme set?
    • The Resurgence of the Jedi battle pack has a new ANH Luke Skywalker and already fans are enjoying the new likeness and the torso design, but the other elements have some issues. The VOTC Luke's legs were used here, and they seem too small for this figure, underproportioned compared to the upper body. Also, the plastic "skirt" is rather stiff, preventing the figure from sitting down, extra frustrating since this scene he's sitting down most of the time. And the head deco is odd, cast in white plastic and then painted. Might a future ANH Luke figure address these problems while still using the head and torso sculpts?
    • It's been 6 years since the last Luke Hoth Gear figure. While that was a nifty item for its time, its sculpt and articulation is specific to 1 part of the movie. Any chance of us getting an updated Luke Hoth, perhaps with a swappable likeness to represent before and after the Wampa attack? We know you usually would prefer to do this via a running change, but after the myriad of running-change-figure problems you had recently, that seems like a troubled route to take, especially with an important character such as this.
    • In a recent Q&A, you stated that you weren't going to be bringing back the POTF collector coins for the foreseeable future, which meant no reusing the POTF card style. This shoots down hope of seeing vintage updates of the "last 15" POTF figures on their original cards. While we understand the reluctance to revisit coins, if you were planning to update any of the original POTF figures under the "Vintage Collection" line, would you merely put them on their corresponding movie cards? In other words, figures like Yak Face, Barada, General Lando, etc., would be placed on ROTJ cards; while figures like Luke Stormtrooper or an Imperial Gunner could go on 1978-styled Star Wars cards? Or are those "last 15" POTF characters off-limits to The Vintage Collection because of their original cards?

  2. #2
    And bam, there they are, all 4 CS questions.

    The J-hook and Darktrooper questions made me happy.

    I fee like the POTF answer was so obvious, but there you have confirmation.

    I'm not surprised to hear running changes are dead now, it was a cool idea but it just hit the wall so hard.
    Darth Vader is becoming the Mickey Mouse of Star Wars.

    "We named the dog 'Chewbacca'!"
    The use of a lightsaber does not make one a Jedi, it is the ability to not use it.

  3. #3
    There answer to the POTF card question suggests that none of the "last 15" vintage figures are even planned for the next 2 years.

  4. #4
    Didn't we have a Cruisemissile question, or is that for the next round? You're not trying to deny the will of the people and cover up our love for the Cruisemissile, are you?

    Mostly good answers this time, and a pretty good one with Luke. The thing about running changes inspired me to go submit a new question, though....
    Tommy, close your eyes.

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by El Chuxter View Post
    Didn't we have a Cruisemissile question, or is that for the next round? You're not trying to deny the will of the people and cover up our love for the Cruisemissile, are you?
    Hi, welcome to last month.

    Nothing too shocking or groundbreaking this time, but it's always nice to be able to plant ideas in their heads.

  6. #6
    Duh, u is rite, I forgetted.
    Tommy, close your eyes.

  7. #7
    In other news . . .

    A few sites got the lineup for Saga Legends this fall:

    Wave 1
    SL01 Bossk
    SL02 IG-88
    SL03 Zuckuss
    SL04 Greedo
    SL05 Jango Fett
    SL06 Darth Vader
    SL07 Leia Boush
    SL08 Darth Maul
    SL09 Grievous
    SL10 Clone Trooper Ep II
    SL11 Anakin- Darth Vader
    SL12 Obi-Wan

    Wave 2
    SL13 Yoda
    SL14 R2D2
    SL15 Shock Trooper
    SL16 Clone Trooper Ep III
    SL17 C3PO
    SL18 Chewbacca
    SL19 501st Trooper
    SL20 Battle Droid 2 pack
    SL21 Luke Snow Speeder
    SL22 Han Solo Hoth
    SL23 Snowtrooper

    I know it's ESB's 30th anniversary and TCW has the whole bounty hunters thing, but hopefully putting four bounty hunters into the assortment will not make them hang around. I wonder if the battle droid two-pack will be a better sculpt than the ones from 2007, but I doubt it. Glad to see the Snowtrooper, as always. Leia Boushh can be something of a slow seller, but still, I'm glad to see Saesee and Plo out of here.

    In the Dewback Patrol Q&A, they said that a new Endor Rebel Trooper is slated for the fall, presumably in wave 3. Strangely, it sounds like they're still in the early planning stages, and apparently don't know what facial hair he'll have. Shouldn't they have that figured out by now, or am I misreading it?

    According to Echo Base Forums, they'll be releasing a cold weather version of either Kit Fisto or Plo Koon, from the comics. Sounds cool (zing!).

    Rebelscum got the list of greatest hits repacks:

    - 4-LOM (EpV wave)
    - Stormtrooper (EpIII wave)
    - Commander Cody (EpIII wave)
    - EpIII Obi-Wan (EpIII wave)
    - EpIII Clone Trooper (EpIII wave)
    - Yoda with hover chair (EpVI wave)
    - EpII Obi-Wan (EpII wave)
    - Mace Windu (EpII wave)
    - Super Battle Droid (EpII wave)

    I think the stormtrooper is going to be a sandtrooper, based on what they said last time, but I guess either one works. Re-releasing the 2003 Yoda with hoverchair (without Chian?) seems odd, so maybe it'll be some different configuration of parts.

    Oola confirmed to come with Jabba; it'll be an all-new sculpt. (Have they confirmed the dais elsewhere?)

  8. #8
    Kinda curious that they confirmed a Battle Droid 2-pack, since that seems to go against what they've said both about production costs and fitting in with the vintage design. I know it would cost less tooling-wise to produce two identical BD's than two different Ewoks, but wouldn't actually producing two much larger figures offset the slight savings, meaning it's essentially the same as what they said was an issue with the Ewoks?

    No word on which are new, which are reissues, and which are slight updates or accessory changes, I take it.
    Tommy, close your eyes.

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by El Chuxter View Post
    Kinda curious that they confirmed a Battle Droid 2-pack, since that seems to go against what they've said both about production costs and fitting in with the vintage design. I know it would cost less tooling-wise to produce two identical BD's than two different Ewoks, but wouldn't actually producing two much larger figures offset the slight savings, meaning it's essentially the same as what they said was an issue with the Ewoks?

    No word on which are new, which are reissues, and which are slight updates or accessory changes, I take it.
    Well the battle droids are in the saga legends line so they will be on the shadows of the Darkside card, not vintage. Because it's saga legends, there's no tooling involved in that equation, just straight reuse of the old mold. Also, all the saga legends figures are presumably straight repacks, nothing new and probably very little in terms of updates other than maybe paint.
    Have: CW Yularen, CW Clone, everything from CW Slave I set except Slave I, TFU Shadow Stormtrooper x2, Evo Trooper, Saga AT-AT Driver, K-Mart Jodo Kast || Want: Vintage Fordo
    Thanks to TheDarthVader, Phantom-like Menace, TheRealDubya, Jediguy, Dark Marble, Umbra, Qui-Long Gone, CrunchyNug, GH_fan and jedikiss.

  10. #10
    Ah, didn't notice they were Legends. Still, I'd rather have two 'Woks, even if it means re-using a mold for a "lesser" Ewok... or maybe tossing Teek, Kaink, or Chukha-Trok in, since they're already tooled.

    The Vintage line has been confirmed to be a mix of old and new, though, which is what I was asking about. I can't imagine they'd make a new Leia Boushh, for instance, but I wouldn't put it past them, either.
    Tommy, close your eyes.

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