Topic of the Week: Who Wants More Classics style Transformers Toys from Hasbro?

Since 2006 Hasbro produced Transformers based on beloved Generation 1 characters using modern toy designs in lines such as Classics, Universe, Generations, Reveal the Shield, Transformers 2010 etc. These toys have proven highly popular with fan collectors, however in recent years Hasbro has significantly declined in manufacturing and selling such toys. Read more and share your comments on this topic going on now in the forums.
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News Poll

How do you like Third Parties offering toys Hasbro will not make?
5 - Great
4
3 - Okay
2
1 - Terrible
0 - Do Not Care



Votes: 287

Poll Results

Member Comments...

Last 10 comments - ( Read All Posts )
JOP - 2013-01-22 @ 6:13 am

The problem with Hasbro's recent line-up is not one of quality (which is a measure of how well a thing is made) per se, but rather, value (which is a measure of the worth of a thing). That is to say, Hasbro are wedded to a set of standard price points at a time when their cost of materials have sharply increased. As such, given the choice between raising the price of a Deluxe Class figure by n dollars, or decreasing the amount of material used in (and by extension, the size and / or solidity of) a given figure, they choose the latter. Thus they end up creating a figure that has the same degree of quality as prior releases, but has markedly less value compared to them.

Do you have information about this specifically? All indications I can see is that the markup is being done by the retailers and not the Hasbro's cost which you say. The only way to know for sure is if we knew what the MSRP of the current toys are.

Sure! In short, plastic is produced in part using oil derivatives; and although there are fluctuations in pricing, the general trend for crude has be a steady increase. As such, Hasbro and other such major plastics users have no choice but to either pass the cost of their material increases onto the consumer, or else replace or remove the material in question from their products.

Now, my point is not that Hasbro have increased their prices (although they may very well have); but rather, they are objectively opposed to raising prices on the various classes that they sell. Thus, given the choice between making the Fall of Cybertron Deluxes smaller, or more expensive, they chose to make them smaller - and quite observably so. Said figures also contain less material in general - a trend that began as early as the second line of Classics.

It would be very interesting, I think, if someone with a extensive collection of modern Deluxes and a good set of scales could record the weights of various figures. I posit we would see a downward trend over the last few years; and I think we can all confirm that if there is one thing we haven't seen during that period, it's any kind of decrease in price.

Blitz-Wing - 2013-01-21 @ 3:18 pm

One easy way to tell MSRP is to go to HasbroToyShop. If it's not marked as being on sale or on clearance, HTS will have the sale price as MSRP.

As an example, FOC Starscream is $14.99 on HTS. Since that's Hasbro's direct site, I would safely assume that is MSRP.

Tripredacus - 2013-01-21 @ 3:12 pm

The problem with Hasbro's recent line-up is not one of quality (which is a measure of how well a thing is made) per se, but rather, value (which is a measure of the worth of a thing). That is to say, Hasbro are wedded to a set of standard price points at a time when their cost of materials have sharply increased. As such, given the choice between raising the price of a Deluxe Class figure by n dollars, or decreasing the amount of material used in (and by extension, the size and / or solidity of) a given figure, they choose the latter. Thus they end up creating a figure that has the same degree of quality as prior releases, but has markedly less value compared to them.

Do you have information about this specifically? All indications I can see is that the markup is being done by the retailers and not the Hasbro's cost which you say. The only way to know for sure is if we knew what the MSRP of the current toys are.

Goktimus Prime - 2013-01-19 @ 8:21 am

In Australia our price points* have remained unchanged, but indeed we are getting less 'bang' for our buck. The one annoying new price point is Commander Class... smaller than Scouts, yet more expensive. Gah. :( It does make it harder to justify paying full RRP for toys now -- recently more fans are inclined to wait until I find a toy on sale rather than paying full RRP. A lot of Australian fans are now referring to full RRP as "impatience tax" (i.e. as opposed to just waiting a few weeks or months to get the toy on sale).

One suggestion I heard from someone - and this is purely just speculative hearsay, so I don't know how true this really is - is that the increasing cost of oil/petrol has lead to toy companies making their toys smaller and dearer. Another theory I've heard is the increase in political instability in the Middle East; someone pointed out to me that we saw the "cheapening" of TF toys starting with Dark of the Moon, which came out shortly after oil-producing countries like Libya were thrown into chaos. *massive.shrug* I'll miss the old Libyan flag though. Would've been the world's easiest flag for kids to colour in at school. ;)

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*Which, like all Hasbro regions outside N. America, is WAY more expensive (e.g. Deluxe RRP = $30)

JOP - 2013-01-18 @ 5:36 pm
People's comments about the quality of Hasbro's toys is very relevant too. And it's not something this petition covers - the petition merely asks Hasbro to resume giving us Classicsverse toys. We all vote with our wallets in terms of telling Hasbro if their toys are any good or not.

The problem with Hasbro's recent line-up is not one of quality (which is a measure of how well a thing is made) per se, but rather, value (which is a measure of the worth of a thing). That is to say, Hasbro are wedded to a set of standard price points at a time when their cost of materials have sharply increased. As such, given the choice between raising the price of a Deluxe Class figure by n dollars, or decreasing the amount of material used in (and by extension, the size and / or solidity of) a given figure, they choose the latter. Thus they end up creating a figure that has the same degree of quality as prior releases, but has markedly less value compared to them.

Of the two complaints regarding the lack of value and the resulting downgrade in size and solidity, it appears to be the former that most fans (at leas in my own experience) cleave to. This appears to come from a desire to maintain a degree of scale between figures; a desire that is, obviously, undercut by an change in the sizing standards that fans have come to expect from the aptly named 'size classes'. While I cannot claim with any veracity that fans will refuse to purchase further Classics-style figures due to a noticeable size disparity, I do think it will have some effect on their enthusiasm for such figures.

Goktimus Prime - 2013-01-17 @ 11:42 pm

People's comments about the quality of Hasbro's toys is very relevant too. And it's not something this petition covers -- the petition merely asks Hasbro to resume giving us Classicsverse toys. We all vote with our wallets in terms of telling Hasbro if their toys are any good or not. :)

I think the worst part was that we all got excited about the new classic style toys we saw being promoted, then only to find out they were Asian exclusives. Same goes for the last few DOTM toys. It seems that Hasbro has been cranking out the ideas and following through with these things that we want, but for some reason or another, they don't end up in the US.

I think the Asian exclusives are developed by a different branch of Hasbro than the US branch in Pawtucket Rhode Island. I suspect by their branch in China. Although it would be super easy for other Hasbro branches to source those toys and release them into other Hasbro markets too.

Fatherdeth - 2013-01-17 @ 11:22 pm
They could join the movement and start making some truly inspired toys.

To be fair, the Hasbro / TakTomy partnership produces what I would refer to as 'collector grade' figures; primarily through the Masterpiece line. The problem is that Hasbro, for whatever reason, continue to treat their domestic collector market as an aberration; a blight upon their desire to market themselves purely as a 'toy company'. Their production and distribution of collector grade figures appears specifically intended to confound the very people expected to purchase them.

For instance: high-end collectors will pay an extraordinary premium for quality (e.g. more paint applications), alacrity (receiving figures as quickly as possible), and a hassle-free purchase experience (buying figures online versus hunting for them in stores). So let's look at Hasbro's release of MP-10: it featured a pointless change in deco from the Takara version, including the removal of paint applications; it came an entire year after Takara's version; and it was sold primarily through Toys 'R' Us stores, frustrating collectors. Hasbro engineered every part of the sales process to thwart the very people they were attempting to sell to; people that were willing to spend $250.00 on a figure that Hasbro wanted to roll out for $50.00.

I think perhaps what I find so extraordinary about Hasbro's current approach is that in so far as many of their other lines are concerned, they have embraced the collector demographic wholeheartedly. Sideshow Collectibles currently have Hasbro's licensed blessing in producing $130.00+ collector grade GI Joe figures. Similarly, Integrity Toys have Hasbro's licensed blessing in producing $130.00+ collector grade Jem dolls. When it comes to collector grade Transformers however, Hasbro loses their goddamn mind. They could simply have Takara run off X additional units of their latest Masterpiece, and provide these to Hasbro for simultaneous release through HasbroToyShop.com. Instead, we get the MP-10 debacle...

Powerful words!!!! Well said!!

Fatherdeth - 2013-01-17 @ 11:12 pm

Generations Legends Cosmos or iGear's MW-04 UFO? I already had the Cosmos, but I saw UFO and purchased him. UFO is a product Hasbro should be putting out. Knight Morpher Commander. Do you think Hasbro would ever put out a Hearts of Steel toy line? Hercules. It took a third party company to get us a decent Devastator. If you don't want to support third party companies, then by all means don't. I mean Hasbro copied Lego with their Kreo toy line. It happens in the business, so lets not attack third party companies for giving us what we want or what Hasbro should be putting out from the start.

Tripredacus - 2013-01-17 @ 2:44 pm

Even if Hasbro did bring back the CHUG style figures, putting money into the development of new molds, it would cut into exactly $0 in third party company profits. Hasbro's lack of ability to bring decent combiners into any modern TF line, overlooking 4/5 of many of the popular sub-groups, and ineffective marketing strategy for what is a collector line would only serve to prematurely cancel whole waves of figures, which would then cause them to be released in limited quantities and force collector's to pay three times Goki's favorite abbreviation, RRP, if they even desired those figures to begin with. I do want to see the classics return, however I'm more than willing and able to pay top dollar for third party items, simply put every third party figure I own is simply a better figure than any Hasbro figure I own. If CHUG's make a comeback I'll buy them, but I'll still buy the third party stuff too, this petition is only half relevent.

I think the worst part was that we all got excited about the new classic style toys we saw being promoted, then only to find out they were Asian exclusives. Same goes for the last few DOTM toys. It seems that Hasbro has been cranking out the ideas and following through with these things that we want, but for some reason or another, they don't end up in the US.

Goktimus Prime - 2013-01-17 @ 2:08 pm

With all due respects, Goktimus. It would be better to have just made that case and left the "Help us put an end to Third Party Transformers toys..." out. Maybe you don't mean it that way, but I am sure some people are seeing it as a bit of an attack on what these these parties are doing, for better or worse.

You're right. I didn't mean it that way, but I can see how others may have interpreted it otherwise. I've now editted the petition and REMOVED all mention of Third Party toys. The wording now ONLY focuses on asking Hasbro to resume making Classicsverse toys.

That was always my original intent with this petition, but I've clearly sidetracked myself by mentioning the Third Party stuff. Anyway, fixed now. :)

P.S. I have now editted post #1 to better reflect the nature of the petition.

Staff: could someone please edit the News page and remove or edit the old image and replace it with the new one (see Post #1)? Thank you.

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