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    The black death

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    Toy collecting, weight lifting, martial arts, meditating and drawing .

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  1. Yes ,they can easily apply across the board on several levels . I could have added more but my thumbs got cramped
  2. In my time of collecting, I have observed several distinct types of toy enthusiasts ,which I have categorised in the following subsets ,each with their own methods and nuances . Ofcourse one may have characteristics common to all so I refer to them in rather broad categories often determined by what they collect and why . 1. The down memory lane guy: he who collects toys that remind him of his glorious youth, toys he once had as a child or the cartoons he enjoyed as a youth. I myself fit into this category as I progressed from the comic book to the action figure to create my own superhero adventures in 3d. These collectors are the originators, those who collected before it was cool for adults to play with toys, who stealthily stalked the toy aisles when it was the sole domain of children ( followed by store security no doubt ) . 2.the nerd : one would be forgiven to assume all the toy collectors are nerds ,but such is not the case, and here the type of toys one collects is the determinative factor of nerd hood ,or not . The anime collectors, the cosplayers, the tmnt and star wars collectors ( which blends into nostalgia) the transformer guys, these more than any other collector bring to mind the traditional idea of the need. He who seeks to build his own geek world to rule over as he sees fit,his plastic companions greatly replacing interactions of the real world which is ofcourse boring and who wants to subsist in that dreary place ? He who exists in the multiverse of Lego, of model kits ,of expensive Japanese semi nude dolls ,or roams the land of mythic legions with knights and giant trolls and elven folk. 3.the high roller : the collector who has funded every crowdfund, every haslab, who doesn't blink to spend thousands on the hot toys, the 3 zero masterpiece ,the guy who proclaims money is no object that can stand between him and coveted plastic. But is it for the love of the toy or just a cap to show off how rich he is ? Can you really enjoy a collection of thousands of toys filling detolf shelves illuminated in various hues in climate controlled basements with armed guards and alarm systems? Who can say but surely they are the rulers of the game and the rest of us toy peasants are just squirrels living in their world observing with amazement (and no less envy ) of the toy treasures they have amassed with their no limit MasterCard or family trust. 4.the blue collar guy : the collector who spends $20 for a toy after the bills are paid and kids fed and clothed ,perhaps once or twice a week looking for that plastic he can find at retail within his budget ( and hopefully the wife won't find out) . Who often has to choose between the newest Spiderman repaint or that case of beer, or pizza and wings to complement the football game;constantly balancing the love of toys with the practicalities of life and walking the very thin line between them both. Marveling at the newest offerings while sadly contemplating he will never be able to put them all on his shelf. Probably the most discerning and critical collector ,and out of them all values his collection the most. The guy, me who ALWAYS opens my packages the day they arrive and can't fathom having so many you don't have time to open them! 5.The completist : we all know this collector, the person who must have every superman ,every repaint of batman or iron man, who must acquire every member of the avengers or X-Men, the guardians of the galaxy who must compile the endless spider fig with a black suit, red suit, pizza or ninja turtle to add yet another totem to the shrine of that character and who will ensure even more profits for companies to use yet another bucky cap body ,yet another repaint of the hulkster, exactly how many batman variants can there be ? Shelves of the exact same character and still never enough for him, the addictive nature of toy collecting reaching its maximum level with this group because like some hot potato chips one will never be enough. 6.the fan boy : relatively new to collecting and influenced by pics in Instagram or the new mcu movie ,collecting is the latest cool thing to do, the latest fad he ( or she ) must aspire to have street cred. Knows nothing about source material and doesn't care that the mighty Thor was never a woman ,or that super heroes always wear colorful spandex and not black leather jackets like us regular mortals . Who cares if the strongest mortal on earth dabs and doesn't want to smash puny humans anymore ? No ,they just want the next wave of mcu or dc peg warmers and to hell if none of it matches comic or nostalgic canon . 7.the scalper / flipper: the black sheep of the toy community, he doesn't collect toys he buys only to sell for profit ,it's all about "value " rather than love . Buy low sell high it's a transaction not a hobby. They seek to corner the market by any nefarious means possible and bend the hobby to their will ,and their interests alone . Big retailers are their cohorts but are often aligned with toy companies who ensure limited supplies with totally unequal distribution making sure all the most popular toys will sell out by the time they drop until the hapless collectors are forced by fomo to resort to the aftermarket to be extorted by the evil power of the force ( called capitalism) to fork over twice and three times they would have to pay had they found it in the wild. Or go without. The flipper is not concerned with points of articulation and cares less about paint apps , for him toys are all about the numbers and perceived value to his addicted clientele ,peddling his wares in the dark web of the after market with a keen eye for what's hot and what's not .And yet as frowned upon as these toy vultures are they do indeed serve a purpose in the ecosystem of toy collecting, providing a last ditch hail Mary play to acquire a toy you have somehow missed, of acquiring one before anyone else...for a price. So which archetype are you ?
  3. Well it will be no surprise to anyone I don't like preorders who has read any of my posts . I have valid reasons for my stance many other collectors share ,this new paradigm in toy collecting was not something we asked for, it was something forced upon us by retailers and toy companies without having the proper distribution and policies in place to make it a seamless purchase. The wait time between order and actual shipment is ofcourse problematic, nowadays one needs a spread sheet to keep up with what is dropping when and how much money you need at any given time to receive the coveted item you want . However you can never know when something will available ,sometimes they come early ( like the cobra b.a.t.s) or they seem never to come at all, like mezco or super 7 . And ofcourse after you have waited months ,if the money is not available to the retailer the second they want it ,you are dropped from the que,and there will be a weeping and a knashing of teeth. A preorder is like a reservation at a restaurant, you expect a table when you wish to have it ,and not be told someone else beat you to it or had more money than you did . It's an uneven situation, we wait for our order but the company decides whether we actually deserve our " reservation " ,many times while keeping our hard earned funds held hostage for months and canceling on the day it should be in the mail . Twice in the past month just such an occurrence has plagued me with endless frustration as I seek to possess the McFarlane cygor megafig . As with most savy collectors ,I had preorders in several places and would have gotten the first who could produce the goods as I see no logic in loyalty to any retailer who has no loyalty to me as a customer. As previously stated they can and will cancel you for any reason at all . But the toy gods scoffed at my preparation, and at the two sites who promised me the fig first I was unceremoniously booted out of the line ,one telling me I didn't have the money ( which I did) and the other never having the product at the time of shipment in which I canceled myself as they already held my money in escrow prior to saying they didn't have it on the day I was supposed to receive it in my doorstep. Mind you ,it was not advertised as a preorder but in stock,but would not ship for two weeks which was strange, but I attributed it to the holiday and considered it worth the wait. They never had the stock, and till the time of me typing this I have yet to receive the refund of my money. And then the domino effect happens since the other order came due but alas my money is tied up in a return and then that order is cancelled for lack of funds and thus a very bad case of fomo sets in .The rest of my opportunities have yet to announce shipments and surely will I actually have the funds in hand to complete the purchase when they do ? I cringe at the thought of having to pay after market on a brand new toy that is neither rare nor expensive simply because the game of preorders is such a unmitigated mess .Limited supplies dropped at arbitrary times and guaranteed to sell out in minutes when they do is a toy collectors nightmare..unless you have the advantage of unlimited funds available so the retailer can get their cash whenever they choose . And oh yeah ,happy New Year and all that .
  4. I would be in on a shadow beast ( I have the classics version) a battle beast and a vikor I probably would use as a Conan fig since I probably will never afford a mezco and the old toybiz legends is rather lame . The only figures I have purchase in this line is skelegod, he man ,battle cat and just picked up beast man but using him for something else . Not really into the he man variants or the other characters all that much but yea it would be interesting if they delve deeper into the line like classics did and reproduce some of those figs . That's where the money is if they are smart.
  5. Not much different than the playmates version tbh so an easy pass for me .
  6. I've seen that diorama before where did you guys score that ? I have a ninja shelf that needs some deco .
  7. Pretty cool but I hesitate to jump in this line for the price and limited opportunity to get them in any depth. Not saying they aren't worth it but unless you are just collecting these my wallet can't bear it .
  8. Thanks for everyone sharing their thoughts on this post . It's nice to know I'm not the only one reevaluating my toy hobby. Have a great new year guys and happy hunting those figs .
  9. After a somewhat disappointing and extremely frustrating year for toy collecting I find myself contemplating whether I should continue my decades long hobby or utilize my time and money in other interests. I see many in the community having great praise for the past year for the numerous offerings made by major and minor companies but I think we can all agree that the trouble was actually getting these figures in hand for a decent price and a reasonable time frame. Considering that most of the toys I wanted that should have already been out by now are still on pre-order without any hint of when they will actually get shipped is disconcerting at Best, at least for me. I find myself canceling more of them everyday as I'm just tired of the endless waiting for things I should already have . Also with new things being revealed daily combined with limited funds it becomes a decision as to which figure I want more ? And will I be able to afford all the orders I have outstanding if they all drop at once ? It's all become quite the chore and im not willing to go thru another year of such frustration. Therefore, in the coming year surely my collecting will be drastically cut to a minimum and mostly to what I have on order now ,as well as a few most have items that tempt me but it will not something I will expend much time on . For me ,my collection is approaching it's climax, the endgame is near and it's simply not fun anymore. The toy game looks bleak, preorders are replacing retail and I hate waiting for anything especially stuff I already paid for . Especially when it doesn't come in time or you may be canceled at the whim of any online retailer for any reason or none at all. My last incident was with wal mart lying about having a product in stock ,taking my money for two weeks with a promise of delivery only to get a notice on that day that in fact it would be delayed. Not to mention the insane hassle of begging for my money back simply so I could purchase it elsewhere before it inevitably sells out . I'm not going thru this in the coming year, this on top of receiving items I didn't know existed that were not advertised and not wanted, yes I'm quite over the pre-order thing and if this is the future of collecting I will be done with it . A major part of the collecting experience is the hunt ,of discovering something cool in the toy aisle, paying for it and taking it home that day will never be the same as paying up front not knowing what the product will actually look like and then waiting a year for is ridiculous to my sensibilities and I will not subjugate myself to it any longer. The once affordable and fun hobby has become an addiction and toy companies assume the status of drug dealers knowing by various ploys and manipulations they have us at their mercy but in 2022 I'm rehabbing my collecting to a bare minimum if at all . All good things come to an end and so it will be for my hobby which began in the late 80's .This new wave of collecting ( and the collectors themselves ) are destroying it ,and the greed of the companies will provide the coup de gras ,brick and mortar doesn't care and surely the next generation is more concerned with tic toc and Instagram then with playing with toys . I ask myself will I go down with the ship and the image in the mirror says no you will not . I'm happy with my collection and will focus more on acquiring dioramas and power effects to complete my world's, but the hunt for the next new figure has for the most part run it's course . It's been a fun ride but the destination is in sight .
  10. Face sculpt is horrible but the bike looks cool at least what I can see of it .
  11. You forget eBay which is where most " exclusive figures " are sold. Not hard to find if you got the cash.
  12. Not even a dc fan but yea I can use this as a general monster type of fig in any of my shelves. I'm all in on any mega fig McFarlane does as they are the best value for the money you can get these days from any line .
  13. I refer to the price difference between an " exclusive " compared to a regular release. Paint has little to do with what you pay for a figure. What does exclusive really mean?
  14. Like many other collectors, I was excited to hear they would be releasing an updated version of the sdcc ulik figure, which is one of my grail toys . While casually skimming over the ads for them in the after market I realized just how much Hasbro screwed the people who bought this set now that a new and improved figure will be soon released for $20 -$30 when they are going for easily $100 or more secondary. Now ,I'm not a flipper or a scalper ,I don't collect toys for their value but I realize many do and boy would I be mad at the way Hasbro will put out an ' exclusive' or a baf and then a few years down the road bring it back for cheap and often better then one people paid a gazillion dollars for. The same thing has happened before ,notably with the children of thanos 5 pk that greatly improved upon the original cull Obsidian baf I purchased for $70 ! And now worth $40 being clearly inferior to the new figure. Makes me wonder, are the haslabs really one and done or will we one day see them all again ,possibly better and cheaper than those already out or soon to be ? If their track record is any indicator, I would bet yes for it seems Hasbro will never let a fig lie dormant if a repaint or retool can be had.
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