It's been a contentious issue over the last couple of Prime Wars installments, and it's only getting more intense. We can see the appeal of stickers to solve budgetary problems, but we can also see the stickers peel - often before we've even bought the toy! In this editorial, RAC goes over the hows and whys of stickers and cites the remarkable consensus growing in a consensus-resistant collector community: Hasbro, Please Stop. Click through for thoughts on this sticky situation.
Consensus is tremendously rare in Transformers fan circles. I mean, even just within the G1/Generations circles, we're talking about the fandom that has made a running gag of - and staked out positions on - which of two identical cassette men is red and which is blue for thirty years now. And yet, there is emerging a rallying point among Generations collectors - people who collectively want more or less G1 fidelity, more or less non-G1 figures, more or less gimmicks, and so on down the checklist of every creative choice Hasbro ever makes. There's something nearly all of us have in common.
We want Hasbro to stop the stickers.
Stickers are a way around that issue, adding complex details in a format far cheaper than a tampograph of similar size. They're particularly prevalent at the Voyager size and above, and the Titan Class figures come with gigantic sticker sheets with G1 details aplenty.
Stickers worked reasonably well in G1, and man does this design team love what worked in G1! Headmasters, Pretenders, Combiners... unfortunately, the world has changed, Transformers have changed, the economy has changed, and recreating what worked about stickers in G1 is not possible. The economy sabotages stickers the same way it sabotages any other G1 design decisions. G1 stickers were a foil backed with adhesive paper, and had a certain degree of durability. That durability is expensive to replicate on a modern toy, and most of them can't get there. Let's look at two attempts on the same mold.
POTP Leaders at TRU, with stickers pre-distressed for your convenience! pic.twitter.com/Tr2PiqIAPc— M Sipher (@MSipher) January 5, 2018
I am soooo glad that I waited for Legends Octane. He is incredibly solid compared to the two Optimus versions of this mold I own, and no stickers! pic.twitter.com/CpMpjuD8hS— Valkysas (@Valkysas) January 6, 2018
i saw potp starscream today.— WeRatePorgs (@_Agent_Adam) January 15, 2018
i saw potp starscream's stickers today.
i did not buy the starscream.
And so it's time for us all to ask Hasbro - politely, because we like their toys and want them to be better - to please lay off the stickers. Find other ways to make the deco work if you can, because this isn't working for us. Cheap stickers on some of the best figures you've ever made is hurting fan perception of them, and that's not good for any of us. You have some of the best, most clever designers and engineers in the world working on Transformers, and we're sure you can find a superior solution!
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