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Old July 2 2013, 04:11 AM   #3241
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Re: The Action Figure and Toy Collecting and Discussion Thread!

Pre-orders for the Amazon exclusive Vintage Collection Slave I are now up and running.

A hundred dollars? Methinks I'm going to wait for a major price drop before ordering. The TRU-exclusive electronic Endor AT-AT Walker (which is much, much larger) costs just $129.99 and you can sometimes get it for less.
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Old July 2 2013, 05:04 PM   #3242
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Re: The Action Figure and Toy Collecting and Discussion Thread!

What the backs of the new 3.75" Black Series packaging look like.

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Old July 2 2013, 05:07 PM   #3243
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Re: The Action Figure and Toy Collecting and Discussion Thread!

$100 is a joke (although probably not as funny as the £100 it will be over here). It is literally a repaint. No new tooling, no new figures, just a fancy paint job and box.

They can forget it.
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Old July 2 2013, 05:12 PM   #3244
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Re: The Action Figure and Toy Collecting and Discussion Thread!

I'm waiting until the price comes down before ordering. As I mentioned in an above post, you can get a huge electronic AT-AT Walker for just $129 or even less than that depending on where and when you buy it.

A hundred bucks for a non-electronic ship that's a repaint of an older mold, comes with just a few small accessories and isn't that big to begin with is just price gouging by Amazon, pure and simple. The pre-order price on the new Vintage TIE Interceptor is $49.99, which is also too high for what it is and what comes in the packaging. It's not as if either one of these ships is a brand new mold and bigger than the older versions.
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Old July 2 2013, 08:48 PM   #3245
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Re: The Action Figure and Toy Collecting and Discussion Thread!

I've long since stopped buying Star Wars ships--got too many of 'em as it is. Fortunately, I was able to get all the ones I wanted before they crossed the $20 mark.

Wait...I forgot about the new movies with very likely new ships.

D'oh!

They're gonna bleed us dry in 2015...
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Old July 2 2013, 08:49 PM   #3246
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Re: The Action Figure and Toy Collecting and Discussion Thread!

I'm actually selling off a lot of my Star Wars ships. Many of them are doubles but I have loose ones that are just too awkward to store anywhere.
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Old July 2 2013, 09:15 PM   #3247
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Re: The Action Figure and Toy Collecting and Discussion Thread!

Makes me wonder if they'll go hogwild and plaster the entire surface of the planet with every conceivable Episode VII toy and collectible possible or if recent experiences with merchandise fizzles and less-than-expected sales performances will lead them to scale back on Episode VII retail product compared to the three Prequels, which each saw an avalanche of stuff both great and crap arrive in stores.

Disney loves a good marketing scheme that's visible just about anywhere, so I imagine if there is a scaling-back compared to 1999-2005 it won't be that big of one.
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Old July 2 2013, 09:35 PM   #3248
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Re: The Action Figure and Toy Collecting and Discussion Thread!

The new 1/18th scale Doctor Who figures are now available in the US via Underground Toys. I opted to "give them a chance" and got the police box, the Doctor, Clara, the new "Nightmare in Silver" Cyberman and the RTD era "bronze" Dalek.

The TARDIS, Dalek and Cyberman are very nice and have scaled down nicely. Alas, the "human" figures are lacking. Well, Clara is "acceptable". Some think her cheeks are too chubby, but I personally did not get that impression. Naturally, a certain level of facial detail is lost going to a smaller scale, but she has a distinctively shaped face that survives the scaling.

It's Matt Smith's Doctor that suffers the worst and it's not so much from the sculpting as it is the paint job, specifically, his eyes. Mine as well as others in photos I've seen have oversized eyes that look outward. He's "wall-eyed"! The Clara figure doesn't seem to suffer from this, at least not mine or others I've seen. So why the Doctor across the board? I suspect the painting hardware at the factory was not properly calibrated. On a larger figure, a miscalibration is not as noticeable, but the smaller you get, the same flaw is magnified.

There's also a certain "blandness" to his figure. His latest outfit, the knew length purple coat (Willy Wonka, anyone?) is fairly "uniform" and that just translates to a featureless surface of plastic. Clara doesn't suffer from this since her dress has a a "decal" of flowers that breaks up the otherwise smooth surface. The Dalek and Cyberman, of course, have "greeblied" detail.

Someone compared the new Doctor figure (actually, the whole 1/18th range) to "Happy Meal" toys, and sadly, I can see an element of truth in that.

Someone upon the Who North America boards went into detailed analysis and review of these new figures and seemed to feel that once you shrink figures past a certain scale, they become less relevent, becoming the "accessories" to a toy vehicle and playset line. Thing is, the only "vehicle" we have at the moment is the TARDIS. Now there ARE some "playsets" just around the corner, but they will be nothing more cardboard based backdrops. That's what you release when a figure is scaled "up", not "down". But Doctor Who is more character driven than bombastic action, so the figures should be central.

No, this is really a "last ditch" effort to hopefully boost a toy line that has "floundered" for the last couple of years. Cutting back on the number of episodes, inserting production "breaks" that last for nearly a year, and then releasing figures that don't capture the interest (peg-warmers) have all taken their toll.

Thankfully, UnderGround Toys and Forbidden Planet still have a contract with Charcter Options to "commission" figures in a 1/13th scale, characters and monsters from the "classic" run of the show. the San Diego Comic Con will debut an "Ace" figure, the last companion of the 7th Doctor, a spunky girl with the guts to "play" with homemade chemical explosives (not the best "role model" in today's environment, eh?). Just to recoup costs for its development, you just know there will be "variants" released, just as they did with Leela last year. Another Jo Grant is on the way and at least two redresses of the Brigadier, Delgado's Master in demon ceremony robes, and a follow-up to the Egyptian god/alien Sutekh, this time wearing his distinctive mask (with eyes that illuminate).

But many fear if the 3.75 inch line sputters and "dies", Character Options may lose the license to make DW figures all together, including the commissioned "classics" at 5.5 inches.

Sincerely,

Bill
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Old July 2 2013, 10:55 PM   #3249
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Re: The Action Figure and Toy Collecting and Discussion Thread!

^Ridiculously poor character choice is what has made the Doctor Who line flounder. Instead of the cool looking aliens, or the wanted companions (Seriously, no Rory?) we get the really lame looking ones from weak episodes.
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Old July 4 2013, 01:53 AM   #3250
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Re: The Action Figure and Toy Collecting and Discussion Thread!

I picked up a NECA Xenomorph today. Man, did they ever knock it out of the park on this one. The articulation and the detail are insane. I need to go and pick up Hicks and Hudson some time.

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Old July 4 2013, 02:34 AM   #3251
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Re: The Action Figure and Toy Collecting and Discussion Thread!

NECA should be the company that's in charge of designing and making 6" and 12" Star Wars figures. They'd cost more - in some cases, probably a lot more - but the attention to minute details just eclipses most of what Hasbro has accomplished with their lines over the years and then some.

I know these are more along the lines of adult collectibles not designed to be in the hands of little kids and Hasbro as a global toy giant makes, you know, items that children can play with no matter how good and sophisticated they look, but the Big H can learn a thing or two from NECA, Sideshow, Art Asylum and other manufacturers over the years.

Remember the lavishly articulated 2001-02 Enterprise figures that were so good looking that they resembled miniature Scott Bakulas, Jolene Blalocks and Dominic Keatings that were put inside clear plastic toy packaging to hang on store pegs? Those weren't adult collectibles aimed solely at boys and girls 18 and older, they were sold in the boys' action figure aisles of chains like Toys 'R' Us right next to goofy little toys from cartoons and animated films. If Art Asylum could almost perfectly nail the faces, proportions and costumes of Scott Bakula and John Billingsley over a decade ago I don't know how other toy companies can't do the same now and have trouble even getting hair color and skin tones right.

Okay, rant over.
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Old July 4 2013, 03:44 AM   #3252
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Re: The Action Figure and Toy Collecting and Discussion Thread!

Yeah, NECA are truly one of the kings of the collectibles world right now. Every company could learn a thing or two. I remember when they were pretty much a McFarlane copycat, making figures that were practically statues based on mostly horror franchises, and of varying quality. Now they're in the business of super-articulated, highly detailed action figures based on some huge properties. They churn out one winner after another, and we are all richer (well, our wallets aren't) for it. The fact that they can put out such quality and at a price that is often within a few dollars of inferior product from the big two manufacturers shows either just how great they are, or just how lazy Hasbro and Mattel are.
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Old July 4 2013, 10:48 AM   #3253
C.E. Evans
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Re: The Action Figure and Toy Collecting and Discussion Thread!

OdoWanKenobi wrote: View Post
Ridiculously poor character choice is what has made the Doctor Who line flounder. Instead of the cool looking aliens, or the wanted companions (Seriously, no Rory?) we get the really lame looking ones from weak episodes.
The Rory figure has been out for quite awhile now.
http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-WeURfyru7W...0/Picture1.png

As far as the overall 3.75-inch line, yes, it's being panned by most folks who preferred the 5-inch line, but I do think there's some economics involved (perhaps to keep rising costs down and to lure in more than just adult collectors).

cooleddie74 wrote:
NECA should be the company that's in charge of designing and making 6" and 12" Star Wars figures. They'd cost more - in some cases, probably a lot more - but the attention to minute details just eclipses most of what Hasbro has accomplished with their lines over the years and then some.

I know these are more along the lines of adult collectibles not designed to be in the hands of little kids and Hasbro as a global toy giant makes, you know, items that children can play with no matter how good and sophisticated they look, but the Big H can learn a thing or two from NECA, Sideshow, Art Asylum and other manufacturers over the years.
IMO, it's an issue of different strategies or catering to different markets. Unlike the smaller companies which may dabble a little in the retail market, Hasbro does most of its business in there. Retailers really don't like very expensive high-end toys on their shelves because they tend not to sell very well. It's easier to move them in specialty shops and online stores (in limited production runs) because they cater to the smaller customer base willing to shell out big bucks for toys.
Remember the lavishly articulated 2001-02 Enterprise figures that were so good looking that they resembled miniature Scott Bakulas, Jolene Blalocks and Dominic Keatings that were put inside clear plastic toy packaging to hang on store pegs? Those weren't adult collectibles aimed solely at boys and girls 18 and older, they were sold in the boys' action figure aisles of chains like Toys 'R' Us right next to goofy little toys from cartoons and animated films. If Art Asylum could almost perfectly nail the faces, proportions and costumes of Scott Bakula and John Billingsley over a decade ago I don't know how other toy companies can't do the same now and have trouble even getting hair color and skin tones right.
I remember reading somewhere that nearly destroyed Art Asylum or, at the very least, it wasn't a good business move for them and forced them to ultimately go back to being a studio-for-hire for other toy companies like Diamond Select.
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Old July 4 2013, 08:35 PM   #3254
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Re: The Action Figure and Toy Collecting and Discussion Thread!

Loose pics of Wave 1 of the Black Series (3.75") have just been posted with much better angles and closeups of all eight new figures.
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Old July 4 2013, 10:23 PM   #3255
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Re: The Action Figure and Toy Collecting and Discussion Thread!

I came across another good find at one of the local Big Lots. Four larger and slightly nicer KO Transformers for $20, which isn't too bad. They came in packs of two, and I've learned that apparently there are two additional molds that may or may not be available in the American market (the BL versions were made in China, unsurprisingly). These include a dump truck and a crane (front robot). I've also seen suggestions that the group is meant to combine into a large robot, but I have no clue what that form is supposed to look like if true. There are no accessories for combination and no mention of the two missing molds on the BL packaging, so it's sort of a case like the Generic Tank Robots on my earlier find.

The first set included the front end loader and the cement mixer, while the second had the excavator and bulldozer. None of the characters got names, but they did get tech specs which seem to imply that the FEL robot would be the leader based on rank.





I find the obvious aping of the TF movie font amusing, along with some of the blurbs on the package. Apparently there's a "transrobot revolution" going on and the phrase "battle for robots" also shows up. All in all, these are pretty decent toys for basic Transformer copies. They have decent articulation and are pretty stable, and they each have a distinctive weapon.





FEL Bot. Despite being the only robot without actual feet, he's just as stable. The weapons in theory can fit any robot, and the box has him using Mixer Bot's blade in a different color (along with gold trim on the chest, where the actual figure has silver). I used the weapons with the figures they were packed next to. His arms are the most awkward part to deal with on the first transformation, because the hands are designed to fold up in a tight little spot on the sides.





Mixer Bot, going by his specs, is apparently the least intelligent of the group - probably not the best combination if he's your mobile factory. His drum comes off as a separate piece in robot mode, and it's kind of too bad it can't attach as a backpack. It would make the robot look more defined. The SOMSV logo also appears on the excavator.




I suppose Bulldozer Bot is perhaps my personal favorite, as I like what they did with both designs. His shovel is packaged as a separate piece, but it can be mounted in robot mode. You can mount it so it will fold forward, not unlike Bonecrusher, but I think it looks a little nicer mounted in the back where the raking unit can fold on top. Using it on the chest blocks the existing detail.




If Bulldozer Bot has a flaw, it's that the head doesn't have an easy way to be pulled out when transforming to robot form. It just pushes down into a hole and doesn't have much to grip on.





Shovel Bot (as I like to call him anyway) is the last of the bunch, and the only one to have the distinctive gray robot scheme versus the yellow dominating. His shovel, which has several points of articulation, plugs into the back of his head and unfortunately has nowhere to go in robot form. His cool looking axe doesn't fit as tightly as it should, but I haven't experimented with the others yet to see if that's due to the hand design (which it likely is). In terms of scale, I'd initially estimated that these figures might be twice as tall as the first set, but it's more a third taller.



Finally, here are some group shots.





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