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  1. #1

    Report from Nuremberg Toy Fair

    JediNews posted a spy report about what was revealed at the Nuremberg Toy Fair. Undoubtedly there will be much more info coming at the New York show next week, but it has some interesting details on Hasbro's plans for the rest of the year:

    Despite last week's announcement that the 3D movie releases are postponed, Hasbro is still planning to go forward with the green "Yoda series". The change to The Black Series will take place over the summer. Only the 6" Luke Skywalker figure was shown for The Black Series, and it looks superb! Most imperssive.

    A new line called "Mission Series" was shown. This is a 2-figure open-boxed set with a window flap. Packs on display include:
    - Vader and Interrogation Droid
    - Battle Droid and another character

    Over in the Movie Heroes line, there is a new Vader card much smaller than normal with low-budget 3-3/4" figures that includes a tiny insert showcasing the character. Much like the Batman £6 line we saw last year. A new Ep3 Anakin figure was shown. This line is targeted towards kids on a budget. This line mirrors the budget Iron Man 3 and Ultimate Spider-Man lines that have already been seen but aren't out yet.

    Class I Vehicles were shown loose (these are already out now).

    Class II vehicles. Jango's Slave I was shown, but in a new triangular-shaped packaging with the Vader design.

    The Black Series 3 3/4". The new Vader art black card style...not vintage...but same size. It is squared off with no die cut fancy shapes. The bubble takes up nearly all the card and wraps around the edges and taped, similar to the ROTS line back in 2005. Figures on display were Anakin, Padmé and a Clone. These appear to be the same Ep2 figures that were originally going to be in the Build-A-Droid line.

    12" figures shown were the Vader-Anakin figure, and a budget Anakin & Clone Trooper. This line style is crossing all brands: Iron Man, Spider-Man, Thor, etc.

    Lightsabers & role play include colour change FX sabers.

    Star Wars Angry Birds: a new Star Destroyer, Darth Vader head, and others. This line has been a runaway success and plenty more product is coming.
    I can't say I'm surprised at a new budget line, given the continually rising prices and the fact that this has been happening in other action figure lines lately. I assume they will be in the style of the limited articulation Battle Packs from this year, which wouldn't be the end of the world if the sculpts are still good - Vader is a pretty good display figure, and Boba would be too if he weren't so strangely large. Hopefully they'll limit the awful-looking leg articulation, but we'll see. The fact that this is meant to appeal to kids or budget-conscious fans will probably excuse some of that stuff. I still anticipate a lot of moaning and groaning on this move, though.

    But thankfully the high-quality collector figures will still be continuing, even if it's in the Vader packaging. Something along the lines of TSC's look would have been nice to wean collectors off of vintage and tie into The Black Series a little better, but oh well.

    An Interrogation Droid doesn't sound like that great of a choice to round out a two-pack, but I'm interested in seeing the Mission Series line.
    My Photos and Reviews: SSG Toy Guide
    My Star Wars Fan Film: The Lazy Jedi
    Follow Me: Twitter | Instagram

  2. #2
    I hope a PK Droid is with the Battle Droid in the Mission Series.

  3. #3
    The thing that most caught my eye was the budget figures. I wonder if tooling costs will overwhelm the pricepoint, obviously you can't just use old '90s molds for this so it's going to be new product like those battle packs last year, but those figures came in at around $6.50 a piece that way, can a market be found for $7 a piece Star Wars guys without the pricetag inflating quickly the way it did with Movie Heroes?
    Darth Vader is becoming the Mickey Mouse of Star Wars.

    "In Brooklyn, a castle, is where dwell I"
    The use of a lightsaber does not make one a Jedi, it is the ability to not use it.

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by Battle Droid View Post
    I hope a PK Droid is with the Battle Droid in the Mission Series.
    Ooh, that would be a great two-pack and I'd get several. When Derryl and I were talking about unmade TPM stuff at CVI, he brought up the PK Droids, so they're at least on his radar (though it seemed like he had only recently seen them . . . still, pretty cool).

    Quote Originally Posted by JediTricks
    The thing that most caught my eye was the budget figures. I wonder if tooling costs will overwhelm the pricepoint, obviously you can't just use old '90s molds for this so it's going to be new product like those battle packs last year, but those figures came in at around $6.50 a piece that way, can a market be found for $7 a piece Star Wars guys without the pricetag inflating quickly the way it did with Movie Heroes?
    As has been mentioned before, labor costs are a huge factor in what's driving up the cost, so much like the smaller Class II vehicles this is probably a way to reign in the number of parts that need to be assembled. This would also obviously lower the number of parts that need to be tooled, so presumably the overall combined cost of the new (limited) tooling and labor would be less than continuing to run the older tools. If nothing else, at least hopefully this means we won't have to see that awful spinnin' Yoda again after this Spring.

    If they continue the budget line, I think it would be a good idea to incorporate army builders in action-ready poses so that collectors who don't want to drop $10-$12 a pop for more diorama filler can be enticed by the line as well - similar to those $10 deluxe three-packs from 2003-2005, though hopefully closer to the droids than the clones in terms of overall quality. You'd think they would want to run variations on the clones or something, similar to Mattel's endless repaints of Batman in their TDKR budget line and Hasbro's own budget lines for Iron Man and Spider-Man.
    My Photos and Reviews: SSG Toy Guide
    My Star Wars Fan Film: The Lazy Jedi
    Follow Me: Twitter | Instagram

  5. #5
    I find it in exceptionally poor taste to have a toy show at Nuremberg... unless all the toys involve Nazi crushing action!
    Tommy, close your eyes.

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by El Chuxter View Post
    I find it in exceptionally poor taste to have a toy show at Nuremberg... unless all the toys involve Nazi crushing action!
    If Hasbro was ever going to make an 'Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade' Adolf Hitler action figure as a convention exclusive, this would have been the place to do it.
    "To be concerned about being grown up, to admire the grown up because it is grown up, to blush at the suspicion of being childish; these things are the marks of childhood and adolescence… When I became a man I put away childish things, including the fear of childishness and the desire to be very grown up." - C.S. Lewis

  7. #7
    Or COMMtech chips that translate languages via a corded earpiece.

    I think the toughest part will be changing over dollars into pounds to by these at stores. And all the possible colour variants? What a hassle...
    "That's what Sheev said."

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. JabbaJohnL View Post
    As has been mentioned before, labor costs are a huge factor in what's driving up the cost, so much like the smaller Class II vehicles this is probably a way to reign in the number of parts that need to be assembled. This would also obviously lower the number of parts that need to be tooled, so presumably the overall combined cost of the new (limited) tooling and labor would be less than continuing to run the older tools. If nothing else, at least hopefully this means we won't have to see that awful spinnin' Yoda again after this Spring.

    If they continue the budget line, I think it would be a good idea to incorporate army builders in action-ready poses so that collectors who don't want to drop $10-$12 a pop for more diorama filler can be enticed by the line as well - similar to those $10 deluxe three-packs from 2003-2005, though hopefully closer to the droids than the clones in terms of overall quality. You'd think they would want to run variations on the clones or something, similar to Mattel's endless repaints of Batman in their TDKR budget line and Hasbro's own budget lines for Iron Man and Spider-Man.
    There are also labor costs in cutting new tools, and they're not factory-line labor either, they're skilled. If factory-line assembly is now dictating new tools, this line is doomed because that's a downward spiral, one can't cut quality and pay for new tools unless one already has the sales to back it up. An entire new tooling library is a significant risk, they must be pretty darn confident that this line will succeed, or worse and what I fear might be happening here, pretty darn desperate.

    Paint variants are obviously a lot more cost-effective than adding different limb runs, but assembly costs wouldn't be changed that way and it's surely more likely to sell than gold Batman - nobody wants to see a rainbow of crappy Batman colors the way Mattel's doing.


    Quote Originally Posted by bigbarada View Post
    If Hasbro was ever going to make an 'Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade' Adolf Hitler action figure as a convention exclusive, this would have been the place to do it.
    Actually, it'd be the last place to do it, because it's illegal in Germany.
    Darth Vader is becoming the Mickey Mouse of Star Wars.

    "In Brooklyn, a castle, is where dwell I"
    The use of a lightsaber does not make one a Jedi, it is the ability to not use it.

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by JediTricks View Post
    Actually, it'd be the last place to do it, because it's illegal in Germany.
    Which is bizarre, because I remember talking to German students at the college I attended (there was a German Air Force Base in our town), and the only thing they knew about the Nazis was that they weren't allowed to talk about the Nazis.
    "To be concerned about being grown up, to admire the grown up because it is grown up, to blush at the suspicion of being childish; these things are the marks of childhood and adolescence… When I became a man I put away childish things, including the fear of childishness and the desire to be very grown up." - C.S. Lewis

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by bigbarada View Post
    Which is bizarre, because I remember talking to German students at the college I attended (there was a German Air Force Base in our town), and the only thing they knew about the Nazis was that they weren't allowed to talk about the Nazis.
    Ooh! Fight Club Nazi variant action figures! :firstrule:
    "That's what Sheev said."

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