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The revelation of the ML poll picks has soured me towards Hasbro, and I'm feeling as though we're never going to see the more obscure characters like Brother Voodoo, Constrictor, The Hood, Multiple Man, etc. Whether it's a fix by Hasbro or not is immaterial because it's what we're getting. But it at least makes sense. There is a better chance of Marvel Legends getting shelf space if popular characters are for sale. I don't see Wal-Mart deciding to go with the 2-packs if three of the figures are Bag-Man, Bi-Beast and Warpath. However, this is probably not very consoling to most, if any of us. I think I have an idea that I'm completely willing to give to Hasbro that will make us all very happy. Just take Marvel Legends, and do what Mattel did with MotU and sell them exclusively through HTS, releasing them one per month. A DTC method will mean they don't need to worry about a retailer running the risk of getting stuck with stock and then dropping further waves. Plus if done as Mattel has been doing lately (not at first b/c Mattel stumbled out of the blocks), we could see a fan club/subscription as well as better communication between fans and the company. I'd rather be able to go on-line monthly and get my ML, without hunting all over the place, and have a better chance of getting those obscure figures I want.

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And then I'm sure they would run into the same problems that Mattel has with MotU. Plus I'm sure that Hasbro would just point out that they tried doing an online exclusive fan picked figure and it didn't sell. You can't compare what Mattel's doing with Mattycollector to anything that Hasbro would do that fans would be happy with. Most (if not all) of the MotU line reuses the same torso, lover thigh and upper arm for every figure. Then they have two or three waist, lower leg and lower arm parts that are interchanged with the above mentioned part to create a figures body. Meaning all they really need to do is a new head scuplt and even then they can some times reuse it. Same thing is going to be happening for the Ghostbusters line (Same body, maybe different hands or boots and news heads).

 

ML collectors already call fowl when parts are reused and really whined last year when Target had the Rulk series at $15, so I really doubt ML fans will want to pay $15 to $20 a figure plus shipping. Right now the stores are in control of whats getting made and they don't want ML.

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Would it be worth their time though is what they'll be asking.

 

Aren't they asking that now? Haven't they been asking this for the past few years? Since they acquired the license? All we (fans) seem to do is complain about quality, character selection, price, paint application, availability, etc. For the amount of product they're trying to move, which is nothing compared to the TB days, I'm sure Hasbro is already asking this question.

 

And then I'm sure they would run into the same problems that Mattel has with MotU. Plus I'm sure that Hasbro would just point out that they tried doing an online exclusive fan picked figure and it didn't sell. You can't compare what Mattel's doing with Mattycollector to anything that Hasbro would do that fans would be happy with. Most (if not all) of the MotU line reuses the same torso, lover thigh and upper arm for every figure. Then they have two or three waist, lower leg and lower arm parts that are interchanged with the above mentioned part to create a figures body. Meaning all they really need to do is a new head scuplt and even then they can some times reuse it. Same thing is going to be happening for the Ghostbusters line (Same body, maybe different hands or boots and news heads).

 

ML collectors already call fowl when parts are reused and really whined last year when Target had the Rulk series at $15, so I really doubt ML fans will want to pay $15 to $20 a figure plus shipping. Right now the stores are in control of whats getting made and they don't want ML.

 

You're right. Most of what makes up the new MOTUC figures are reused parts. But every toy company does that. Hasbro re-uses feet and hands and torsos for their GI Joe line. Mattel re-uses pieces for their DCUC line. Even companies that are in the higher-end range of the market re-use pieces. Sideshow constantly re-uses entire bodies for their figures. I know, because I own several pieces. It's the way in which parts are re-used that causes outrage. Re-using a torso for a bare chested figure that clearly has folds and wrinkles of a shirt causes outrage. Clever recycling can still get us to new, highly original figures.

 

And prices go up. Regardless of the means of distribution, prices go up. How much did a Marvel Legends series 1 cost at retail originally? $7.99? $8.99? Now they're over $11 with sales tax. How much did a simple Transformer cost in 1985? And now? Prices go up. People get upset when they don't see a direct increase in some other quality of the product. The Red Hulk wave was not exactly the highest quality series of figures. Plus, the BAF was not exactly the same size as Galactus or the Sentinel. People felt the increase in price wasn't worth the lack of quality. So if the quality is there, people will buy. That's the explanation for the success of the MOTUC line. Most figures don't come with many accessories and there is no BAF. It is the high quality that drives the line. So, if Hasbro made a high quality line, with all the paint apps we clamor for, and character selection we want with just the exact number of accessories specific to each figure, and made them available on-line through their HTS, and released them on a specific day each month not only would be be getting what we're asking for, but we'd also have an easier way of getting them plus we'd know when to expect them (instead of waiting over a year only to see the figures aren't worth it).

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Would it be worth their time though is what they'll be asking.

 

Aren't they asking that now? Haven't they been asking this for the past few years? Since they acquired the license? All we (fans) seem to do is complain about quality, character selection, price, paint application, availability, etc. For the amount of product they're trying to move, which is nothing compared to the TB days, I'm sure Hasbro is already asking this question.

 

And then I'm sure they would run into the same problems that Mattel has with MotU. Plus I'm sure that Hasbro would just point out that they tried doing an online exclusive fan picked figure and it didn't sell. You can't compare what Mattel's doing with Mattycollector to anything that Hasbro would do that fans would be happy with. Most (if not all) of the MotU line reuses the same torso, lover thigh and upper arm for every figure. Then they have two or three waist, lower leg and lower arm parts that are interchanged with the above mentioned part to create a figures body. Meaning all they really need to do is a new head scuplt and even then they can some times reuse it. Same thing is going to be happening for the Ghostbusters line (Same body, maybe different hands or boots and news heads).

 

ML collectors already call fowl when parts are reused and really whined last year when Target had the Rulk series at $15, so I really doubt ML fans will want to pay $15 to $20 a figure plus shipping. Right now the stores are in control of whats getting made and they don't want ML.

 

You're right. Most of what makes up the new MOTUC figures are reused parts. But every toy company does that. Hasbro re-uses feet and hands and torsos for their GI Joe line. Mattel re-uses pieces for their DCUC line. Even companies that are in the higher-end range of the market re-use pieces. Sideshow constantly re-uses entire bodies for their figures. I know, because I own several pieces. It's the way in which parts are re-used that causes outrage. Re-using a torso for a bare chested figure that clearly has folds and wrinkles of a shirt causes outrage. Clever recycling can still get us to new, highly original figures.

 

And prices go up. Regardless of the means of distribution, prices go up. How much did a Marvel Legends series 1 cost at retail originally? $7.99? $8.99? Now they're over $11 with sales tax. How much did a simple Transformer cost in 1985? And now? Prices go up. People get upset when they don't see a direct increase in some other quality of the product. The Red Hulk wave was not exactly the highest quality series of figures. Plus, the BAF was not exactly the same size as Galactus or the Sentinel. People felt the increase in price wasn't worth the lack of quality. So if the quality is there, people will buy. That's the explanation for the success of the MOTUC line. Most figures don't come with many accessories and there is no BAF. It is the high quality that drives the line. So, if Hasbro made a high quality line, with all the paint apps we clamor for, and character selection we want with just the exact number of accessories specific to each figure, and made them available on-line through their HTS, and released them on a specific day each month not only would be be getting what we're asking for, but we'd also have an easier way of getting them plus we'd know when to expect them (instead of waiting over a year only to see the figures aren't worth it).

You are completely right, good response

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And prices go up. Regardless of the means of distribution, prices go up. How much did a Marvel Legends series 1 cost at retail originally? $7.99? $8.99? Now they're over $11 with sales tax. How much did a simple Transformer cost in 1985? And now? Prices go up. People get upset when they don't see a direct increase in some other quality of the product. The Red Hulk wave was not exactly the highest quality series of figures. Plus, the BAF was not exactly the same size as Galactus or the Sentinel. People felt the increase in price wasn't worth the lack of quality. So if the quality is there, people will buy. That's the explanation for the success of the MOTUC line. Most figures don't come with many accessories and there is no BAF. It is the high quality that drives the line. So, if Hasbro made a high quality line, with all the paint apps we clamor for, and character selection we want with just the exact number of accessories specific to each figure, and made them available on-line through their HTS, and released them on a specific day each month not only would be be getting what we're asking for, but we'd also have an easier way of getting them plus we'd know when to expect them (instead of waiting over a year only to see the figures aren't worth it).

 

 

Still how do you explain AOA Sunfire? Nice figure done with mostly pre-existing parts, good paint job, good plastic quality, #1 in a fan pick poll and a nice price point. But still no one ordered him. I think that MotU would have the same problem if they came out every three months, in a three figure wave at $15 that you could buy at TRU or Target or Walmart. A big part of the popularity of MotU in the fact that they are nice figures made for collectors in low numbers. The big key thing there is low numbers. I would bet (since Mattel doesn't release exact numbers) that each MotU figure is only produced in the 10,000 to 20,000 figure range.There's also the balance of there only being some fifty or so MotU characters (original characters not versions of He-man, etc) and the fact that for several years there was no MotU product out there and that this new line doesn't really fit in with the previous lines. All the factors work really well for a small license like MotU and have driven it beyond being collector oriented to be what I would call scalper oriented. I would guess that somewhere over 25%of all the MotU figures bought go to scalpers or 2nd hand dealers (ie internets store, just look to the right of your screen).

 

In order for ML to do well they would have to bring something new to the game (so to speak). That means new scale, new type(s) of articulation or paint apps and probably just starting over in general. To do that they would have to go with heavy hitters (IM, Spidey, Wolvie) and fans claim they don't want that. ML as a brand is just in a no win situation. If they had come out with a character like Banshee he wouldn't sell on his own. If the HML series one Banshee had come out as an online exclusive figure by himself at $15 with slightly better paint apps would the fan base have bought him? I don't think so. Then you have the same situation they had with Sunfire. We asked for him, we demanded him and when we got him we didn't buy him. So it's either Hasbro's fault for giving us what we want or there just isn't that much of a fan base for ML>

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Sunfire did not sell well online, who's to blame? The fans? He won an online poll, what gives? Poll results can be skewed by multiple voting by unscrupulous individuals. Well first of all, the character is not a top tier character (C-list). Not many kids really know this character and looks like just another Human Torch. There's only so many collectors who are interested in this figure. And outside of X-Men fans or comic aficionados does not have enough visibility to kids. Not in Marvel cartoons, not in movies. How many Marvel posters show this character? Not many. It's better to have some comic book insert with the product like Secret Wars or Star Wars 2 packs. ToyBiz proved having a comic insert is a winning formula and sold this in stores. If not, go the Marvel Classic Figurine route and add a descriptive insert of the character.

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Sunfire did not sell well online, who's to blame? The fans? He won an online poll, what gives? Poll results can be skewed by multiple voting by unscrupulous individuals. Well first of all, the character is not a top tier character (C-list). Not many kids really know this character and looks like just another Human Torch. There's only so many collectors who are interested in this figure. And outside of X-Men fans or comic aficionados does not have enough visibility to kids. Not in Marvel cartoons, not in movies. How many Marvel posters show this character? Not many. It's better to have some comic book insert with the product like Secret Wars or Star Wars 2 packs. ToyBiz proved having a comic insert is a winning formula and sold this in stores. If not, go the Marvel Classic Figurine route and add a descriptive insert of the character.

 

Don't forget that Toy Biz also "proved" that an Iron Man, Wolverine, or Spider-Man in damn near every wave is a "winning formula" too.

 

Anyway, Hasbro will never do this idea. They tried online-only sales targeted at adult collectors using mostly-existing parts before, and it FAILED MISERABLY for them (DTC G.I. Joe). The MotU Classics model is not one that Hasbro subscribes to or will follow. Selling 20,000 figures at $20 apiece is chickenfeed for Hasbro (and make no mistake, using this model the figures would be $20+). Just because Mattel is willing to do it doesn't mean Hasbro would be. In fact they have repeatedly and emphatically stated that they will no longer consider online-only product lines. The occasional exclusive, sure, but not entire lines based on online sales. It simply doesn't make them enough money to make it worth their while.

 

That's saying nothing of the remarkable "Jedi Mind Trick" that Mattel has managed to pull on the collector's community with the MotUC line (Can anyone say "artificial shortage?")

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You want to fix the line?

 

Start over, release figures similar to how the DCUD is released by doing by themes and mixing A-List characters with B-list or less, have the figures available at retail(Unlike the DCUC), and actual work to finish-off groups and teams of figures in a logical order.

 

There...the line is fixed!

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