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Thread: Death Star!!!!

  1. #21
    I'll buy that, so to speak. Either way I'd be happy.

    The look of the individual pieces is cause for concern though. I'm not sure how you could design a multi-use playset that also doubles as a puzzle piece that doesn't look absolutely goofy as a stand alone. Little kids will look at it and have no idea what it is supposed to be unless they can read the little description on the box. Seeing a fully armed and operational round Death Star that opens up to be a full on playset is nearly guaranteed to catch everyone's eye.

    The same goes for the preposed Star Destroyer. I can't even imagine what those pieces would look like in individual boxes. Strange little four walled rooms with a slanted roof. Certainly nothing that a parent would be willing to spend $20+ dollars for.

    There is also the issue of pricing. Just like a hacked up car, you know that Hasbro would price the total cost of individual pieces to be much more than pricing the thing out as a whole. Parents can be very savvy when seeing the big picture and might feel a rip-off scheme coming on. Toss in the possiblity that availablity of all the pieces might not be there and a large percentage of potential buyers will just pass on the whole thing.

    Yeah, high prices on any toy keep people away. I just saw a legion of 12" Dewback/Stormtroopers at the local Toys R Us. Is that because of the $80 price tag? Hell yes. Why? Look what you're getting for $80 bucks. Not much really. However, toys that look like spaceships, that open up into hours of fun playsets have much more built in value than a big dinosaur with it's $20 rider.

    After all is said and done, one piece ships are the way to go for everyone.

  2. #22
    Actually, there is sort of a precedent.....

    Back in the last year or so of the ESB line, Kenner introduced the Micro Collection, years before Micro Machines came out. The playsets connected to form a larger world. Many of these sets were superior to the later MM versions. I'm sure most of you remember them. If not, head over to the Action Figure Archive (URL anyone?), where there are lots of pictures of the existing sets as well as unproduced prototypes (Bespin Torture Chamber, Bacta Tank). Anyway, the recent POTJ Bespin Freezing Chamber is very similar to the old Micro Collection set. I'm thinking it wouldn't be too tough to make a Control Room/Gantry Playset that connects to it. Why not a couple of DEath Star Playsets like to old Micro Collection ones? Two or three sets that contain blast doors, a Detention Blocck, Trash Compactor, Gunner Station, etc.... Even if they didn't form a huge round whole, it would still be cool.

  3. #23
    Exactly Obi Dan!!! Back when I originally started my sectional kick, that was what made me think of it. Micro playsets reimagined for the 4" line...of course, the Micro playsets weren't a huge hit...




    (oh boy.)

  4. #24
    While cool in it's own right, I don't think that connecting playsets are all that practical for the 3" line of figures. Theoretically, once you had all, what, like 10 sections or something, you'd need a designated area in your home to set it all up -- something akin to the train set at Christmas time. Most people have trouble storing their stuff, much less finding a place for a huge play area.

    The positive benefit of an all-in-one playset is the multi-use function of it in a nice convenient and recognizable format. If you're looking to build a diorama, then I'll understand the dissension that I've heard toward this and the Star Destroyer. But Hasbro's theory, I suppose, has been to create a market for kids who play with their toys. If you want pretty diorama displays, your best hope will be arts and crafts at home. I truly believe that the collective energy is better spent toward goals which have a (remote) possibility of being achieved.
    Last edited by stillakid; 09-06-2001 at 10:39 AM.

  5. #25
    I don't know, I don't see too many $100-and-up action figure playsets in the toy aisles. I'll admit, I don't collect much outside of Star Wars. I do think, however, that if Hasbro is willing to do things like the Theed playsets, Endor playset, and Hoth playset, not to mention the recent Freezing Chamber, then a couple of twenty-to-thirty dollar playsets have a much better chance of making it to store shelves than a huge, expensive, all-in-one playset. And it really would only take two or three playsets to represent the Death Star, or Bespin, or Jabba's Palace. It wouldn't take up much more room than an all-in-one playset would. If you look at the old Micro Collection Playsets as an example, I don't see how you could think that kids wouldn't know what they're getting, provided they've seen the movie. Regarding ship-playsets, Millenium Falcons and Royal Starships ("playsets-in-ships") sat or continue to sit on shelves, even at clearence. (Of course, so did the Theed sets, but that hangar set really sucked.) As for the idea of a huge Death Star hangar, I personally don't even want it, and it seems even more unlikely than four huge sections of a ball-shaped Death Star. I think a smaller scale of playsets that can connect is the way to go. I'd also be fine with a Star Destroyer Bridge and Meditation Chamber set that made no attempt to resemble the outside of the craft. They'd have to make it ten times better than the old one, of course.
    Last edited by Obi-Dan Kenobi; 09-06-2001 at 02:04 AM.

  6. #26
    Originally posted by Obi-Dan Kenobi
    They'd have to make it ten times better than the old one, of course.
    I'm thinking that maybe this is what I see as the bigger problem. I don't have a lot of faith in a highly detailed, high quality playset like you're talking about. Hasbro doesn't have the track record to prove that it would happen. If a separate Meditation Chamber, Bridge, Garbage Compactor, or Hangar Bay ever did come out, I forsee hours of whining about how it fell short of expectations, etc. The Carbon Freeze Chamber has really been the best effort in years, at least since the old days.

    In terms of the stuff sitting on shelves, I'll go back to "value." Any of the Episode I stuff suffered from a less than great film backing it up. Without the groundswell of parental support, kids won't have the funds to pay for much. Our parents were willing to buy the Falcon, Death Star Playset, and AT AT despite the high cost because they liked the movies too. Unfortunately, TPM didn't get this kind of help. Having said that, if parents were to go to the store and see a Death Star or a Star Destroyer on the shelf, they would recognize them and be much more likely to buy them because they come from movies that they know and enjoy. The Queen's Ship doesn't have that recognition quality and so it sits on the shelf.

    The Endor set was small and gets the "playset" name by default. There's not much there. The Theed Hangar sets are sparse and it doesn't appear that you're getting your money's worth. Add that to the lack of TPM support and again, you get a shelf warmer. The Detention Block Rescue and Death Star Escape are both interesting but again, there's not much that you can do with them alone. The Rescue is cooler when you can combine it with the vintage Garbage Compactor and the Death Star Escape makes more sense when connected to a bigger Death Star set. Point being, a) they get boring when alone, and b) Hasbro didn't make any of this stuff to connect to a bigger whole and there are no plans on the distant horizon to do so. One big playset is the only practical answer to address the problems of quality, value, and playability.

    I had a couple of those old micro collection things and from experience I'll say that nobody bought them because there was absolutely no play value. It really was the first Star Wars Diorama attempt that I can remember. Nice to look at, but just something else to dust.

    But, oh well, I guess I'm the only one that wants more and cooler ships and playsets. I'll just be over here playing with my vintage stuff.

  7. #27
    While I stand my ground on Ep1, I will agree that the movie just didn't lend itself to high quality inexpensive toys the way the OT did. Plus, I saw many parents refusing to buy their kids Ep1 toys based on their dislike of the movie.

    Hasbro needs to realize OT stuff is different in the eyes of the SW fan. You present us with a $100 Queen's Royal Starship and we respond with, "Eh, maybe, if I can afford it." You present us with a $100 Star Destroyer and we say, "Crap, how much blood am I going to have to sell for this one?" or "I'll just hide my car at a friend's house so the repo man can't find it, but I MUST have that toy!"

    Personally I would be happy with a re-released vintage DS playset if the alternative is nothing at all.

  8. #28
    Hey Hasbro! remember this one? Anything happening over there at Hasbro HQ? huh?

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