Transformers Daily News Source for Transformers 5, Titans Return, Robots in Disguise, Combiner Wars, Generations, Third Party, G1, Beast Wars, Reviews, Comics, Games & More Than Meets the Eye!
TFormers Transformers News and Reviews
facebook twitter Pinterest Tumblr Google+ youtube podcast rss
Conventions Center
SDCC 2015 - The Easiest Exclusives Purchasing Ever?
ExVee - Thursday, July 30, 2015


Shockingly enough, all three of the Transformers exclusives on Hasbro Toy Shop which debuted at San Diego Comic Con this summer are still available to purchase as of this writing. While this batch isn't the first to see one piece stick around for a little while after activation, it's probably the first time the whole assortment has stayed accessible and obtainable even for those not riding their mobile devices at work hoping to beat store crashes. So what made this year different? Keep reading!


First we need to look backward. As noted, most years see something among the exclusives stick around longer than most, and perhaps most infamous for that is the Knights of Unicron set, the larger and more expensive offering from 2014. Very much a passion product for the people involved in making it, it was a remarkable piece of merchandise, but ultimately perhaps too ambitious. In delivering a very immersive package with a lot of "secondary" features in addition to the set of toys, it wound up requiring a very high price tag for something that honestly was quite a narrow focus piece. It didn't come as much surprise when it was the longest lasting straggler after the exclusives went up on HTS last year. Meanwhile its batch-mates, a Kreon book box and the pop-up Ark Dinobots set went considerably more quickly. So, the general sense would be to look at last year's sets and decide that Knights of Unicron "failed" because it didn't sell right away. It was an interesting thing to try, but for the factors involved with it, it just didn't hit its target. We're still sort of early in the process for this year's batch, but should we take their continued presence to mean that this year was a flop? I really don't think so.

Knights of Unicron is far from the first set to be a slow mover. A couple exclusives during Transformers Prime hung in there quite a while just for some easy examples. SDCC exclusives are an interesting thing, because as much as they need to appeal to us, the major, dedicated fanbase, they also have to hold some appeal for the more casual fan that may be attending SDCC itself. Products based on the current "main line" may not be the best way to try to hit that goal, since it might not carry a great deal of interest to someone not deeply immersed in current Transformers media, even though we as fans may appreciate what they have to offer. At a glance, "Classics"-style products seem to do really well, because they appeal more easily to all manner of fans. And this year seems to be playing to that trend the best that it can. Everything involved is a "Classic" kind of product, even the Kreons. But by that logic, all of these should have been gone within minutes, shouldn't they? So why are they still here?

If you ask anyone who's tried in years past to get an exclusive off HTS, only to find it out of stock before they can get through check out what went wrong, by and large they'll first respond with profanity, but then they'll say that "they didn't make enough sets". It might be expressed as that too many sold at the show, or something else, but it comes down to the same idea: Lacking inventory to meet the entire demand of the people who couldn't make SDCC. Now, there's the other side where the sets that sell slowly get accused of having too many produced, but that's more the nature of fandom where it's literally impossible to win. But the observation that some sets aren't made in enough numbers so that everyone who wants them is one that seems like it has actual merit. It's a little more complicated than that, since it would also require accurately predicting which of the sets will be most desired, when the hope and intent of the people making these toys is that everyone will want all of them equally. In theory, if every year, every set was desired to the same degree that the best selling set was, everything would run out of stock immediately, and the underproduction argument carries more weight. I think that may have been addressed this year.

We have three sets which ought to carry a solid across the board appeal, which ought to mean a fast sellout. But since that hasn't happened, we need to look at what might contribute to that. The most optimistic answer is a greater production run for all of it. To make sure every fan that wants one of any toy offered this year has the chance, they went for higher numbers. Hopefully if that's true, it's a practice that not only gets brought back in subsequent years so the concept of SDCC exclusives being impossible to get falls away from the fandom's consciousness, but even expands in to other Hasbro properties with exclusives that can be easily predicted as having high demand. But again, this is the answer that carries the most positive spin. It's not the only answer, though.

Demand may simply be low for what was offered. Kre-O fans LOVE their Kreons, and this year's set is a great dollar value for the number of Kreons and parts included, all in an attractive package. But Kre-O is not a strong brand in the US, and while the diehards will be outspoken for a long time, there may not be force of numbers to get the sets sold through quickly like there might have been just last year. Combiner Hunters is a nice looking set, with three molds in interesting new decos with special accessories and even a bit of remolding to facilitate it. And the "story pitch" to it, three Autobots as a unit fighting combiners with monster-size weapons is actually really cool. But there's one consistent complaint I hear, and it's the price. And I tend to agree. I dig what the set is trying to do, but at $75, it feels like it's about $15 too high for what's there. Finally there's Devastator. Devastator should have been the big star of this exclusive set, but a lot ended up turning against it. It had a solid draw with the alternate face sculpt, but at Tokyo Toy Show two weeks before SDCC, Unite Warriors Devastator was revealed to have a head that could be both styles. The chrome was something of a turn off in general for a range of people, even though SDCC Devastator had more paint work otherwise. But the biggest nail of all wound up being that it wasn't the first release.

Devastator was supposed to have a retail street date of August 1st, and I believe that was more about making sure the SDCC edition was the first one that anyone would have the chance to buy, to strengthen its sales. But not everyone respected that street date, and retail Devastator was available in some places before SDCC started. Knowing that the regular version would be available in the very near future likely hurt the interest some people would otherwise have had in the convention exclusive version. In an odd move, Devastator wound up being the more reasonably priced exclusive, in comparison to the cost of the retail equivalents. At only $30 above the normal SRP, it would only be a small drop in the bucket for someone already prepared to put down $150 on the normal set. Had things stayed as planned, Devastator would have had everything going for it to be a huge seller this year.

So, we're left with probably our first year since HTS and Transformers SDCC exclusives have been a thing where the whole bunch has stayed in stock constantly since being activated. While I attribute a lot to reduced demand, I also believe that a production increase probably took place, and between these two factors nothing Transformers has sold through yet. The question we can't answer right now is how it will affect next year. If we're lucky, apparently slow sales this year won't make increased inventory numbers look like a bad idea to try again, because in a set that has less working against it, it would be the best thing to happen. But paired with what we can pretty reasonably infer as being lower than usual demand on everything, it might have been less than ideal timing to give this a try.

Hasbro was kind enough to provide us with samples of this year's exclusives for review, and you can check out all of our coverage through the links below!


TFormers Member Comments

NO COMMENTS YET - Start the Coversation by Posting Yours Now!

»  POST A COMMENT ON THIS STORY - CLICK HERE!  «
     (Membership Required)

More Conventions Center News
Yet another Hasbro Fan media event is behind us at Toy Fair. From this we have lots of photos of current and upcoming toys to obsess over, as we do every year. But that's simply the obvious, most easily visible takeaway from the presentation. But we learn more than that, so it's time to look back over the day and sort out the larger scope of information we've been given from what is arguably our biggest single day of reveals for the whole year. Keep reading!
The smallest gallery to share is that for the standard Masterpiece line. The newest entrant shown is the MP-17+ Prowl featuring animation-inspired deco and which it seems is due to get a same-month release by Hasbro going by indications from some of the US retailers. Also out at the show were Shadow Panther, with a copy of Cheetor out as a point of comparison. And rounding out the upcoming product was Dinobot, making most things around it look small. It seems that several other items were included in the display, but in the form of exclusives and other long-since released products to represent the line. You can check out the photos of the newer products below.
Wonderfest managed to diverge a bit from Toy Fair's presentation this year in the movie product on hand. While the Studio Series line was on full display matching Hasbro's reveal, a few of this year's Movie The Best products were out in the exhibit space too - though it's probably not too unfair to say some of them were rightly outclassed by their brand new Studio counterparts. We also get to see a little bit of Move Masterpiece among these toys, resulting in the movie offerings for this year being nicely represented. Click through to check them out!
Wonderfest is happening in Japan right now. The one day event falls just hours after the first day of Toy fair in New York, and on the Transformers side, and consistent with our earlier speculation much the same lineup of products were on display, albeit with subtle differences. Unfortunately in Power of The Primes those differences are limited to the state of finish of the various items shown, rather than things like actual deco choices. For instance, grey prototypes of Optimal Optimus and Predaking versus color versions. Click through to see these and more!
The images are still rolling out of Toy Fair 2018. Here, we have even more Transformers showroom images featuring the mighty PREDAKING, and more. Keep checking back for more coverage from Toy Fair 2018.












Toy Fair 2018 Transformers News!


Optimus Prime Issue 15
Generations IDW Comic Book
Battleslash
Generations Power of The Primes Legends Class Figure
Roadtrap
Generations Power of The Primes Legends Class Figure
Transformers Vs. Visionaries #1
Generations IDW Comic Book
Lost Light Issue #12
Generations IDW Comic Book

Masterpiece MP-40 Targetmaster Hot Rod In Hand Photos With Comparisons To MP-28
Masterpiece MP-40 Targetmaster Hot Rod In Hand Photos With Comparisons To MP-28

Optimus Prime 2018 Annual Full Comic Preview - Starscream: The Movie
Optimus Prime 2018 Annual Full Comic Preview - Starscream: The Movie

HasCon 2017 - Transformers G1 Monopoly Deluxe Collector's Edition Board Game
HasCon 2017 - Transformers G1 Monopoly Deluxe Collector's Edition Board Game

RADIO FREE CYBERTRON






ENI
About
Entertainment News International (ENI) is the popular culture network for fans all around the world. Get the scoop on all the popular comics, games, movies, toys, and more every day!
Sites
Action Figures
Entertainment
Marvel
 
Podcasts
Star Wars
Transformers
Links
Support
© 2018 Entertainment News International - All images, trademarks, logos, video, brands and images used on this website are registered trademarks of their respective companies and or owners. All Rights Reserved. Data has been shared for news reporting purposes only. All content sourced by fans, online websites, and or other fan community sources. Entertainment News International is not responsible for reporting errors, inaccuracies, omissions, and or other liablities related to news shared here. We do our best to keep tabs on infringements. If some of your content was shared by accident. To have it removed right away, please [ Contact Us ].