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« on: January 19, 2008, 10:36:55 AM »

Here is our roundup of the Hasbro Q&A sessions for the week of January 18th, 2008


Stay tuned for our own Questions & Answers.



Now to go around the collecting community!

4-INCHES.DE

QUESTION:  Hasbro mentioned multiple times that the assault vehicle assortment (or midsize vehicles) will be a core segment within the Star Wars line for the next couple of years and that the most iconic vehicles should appear in that line. Well, the latest vehicle releases are providing a quite good insight into what you mean by this statement. How many "never seen before" vehicles could fans expect for the next years, would there are 2 or 3 "new" vehicles each year? Within this context it will be interesting for fans how Hasbro does appraise the "iconic" value for those vehicles that hypothetically would fit into this format just by their expected size. And before we harass you with that same question for each single vehicle again and again we would ask you on the whole: How would you rate the "iconic" value for vehicles like: Bongo (Episode I), Neimoidian Shuttle (Episode I, II und III), Coruscant Airtaxi (Episode I), Naboo Gian Speeder (Episode I), MTT Shuttle w/ Battle Droid Holder (Episode I), Count Dooku's Solar Sailor (Episode II), Homing Spider Droid (Episode II), Bail Organa's Airspeeder (Episode III), Kashyyyk Oevvaor Katamaran (Episode III), ISP Swamp Glider (Episode III), DC0052 Intergalactic Airspeeder (Episode III), NR-N99 Tank Droid (Episode III), HAET-221 Republic Assault Gunboat (Episode III), Mankvim-814 Light Interceptor (Episode III), P-38 Starfighter (Episode III)? And last part of the question: Are there vehicles among the mentioned ones that Hasbro wouldn't take into account for the standard vehicle assortment because they are not enough "iconic"?

ANSWER:  The outlook is very bright for 2-3 new models a year, and we will announce shortly at Toy Fair the news ones for 2008. There are indeed some very exciting ones on the list, including at least one you mentioned. For the most part, we take into account how uniquely Star Wars they are, how much screen time they get (not always a prequisite, but it helps), the context of their use (are they assault vehicles like fighters, or passive like landspeeders?), ease of fit and manufacturability within the format, what the kid & collector demand would be, and the like. Without revealing too many details, we think that your list contains many vehicles that we will likely not do because they are too passive (speeders, Bongo, taxis), do not have an inspiring design (Dooku's Solar Sailor), represent factions that are not very popular (Nemoidian ships), or cannot be manufactured in this size (MTT, Wookiee catamaran). We have learned to never say never, but those are the criteria we use to guide our decision-making and hone in on the vehicles that we feel are "must-haves" against which we will devote our resources.


QUESTION:  If Hasbro would redesign the Millennium Falcon which dimensions would the Falcon have? Would the vehicle be completely "new" or would you re-use parts from the POTF2-vehicle? What could fans expect for a given price, say $ 150,00, electronics, one or more added figures?

ANSWER:  We will not be taking any questions on the Millenium Falcon.


QUESTION:  3) The Sith Apprentice Evolution Set was recently be announced. Is this the set you mentioned as you said there would be a character based evolution set or is this another just unannounced set? With the Sith Apprentice Set there are 7 resulting evolution sets including the 3 repack sets by now that will be released during 2008. Will there be a few more evolution sets on the radar for 2008?

ANSWER:  Yes, we alluded to The Force Unleashed Evolution set previously, but could not announce it official until after the new year. You are correct in your totals. We can also confirm that there *will* be additional Evolution sets in Fall 2008 as the line will continue throughout the year. Details on those sets will be made available around Toy Fair or at later conventions.




BOBA'S BOUNTY

QUESTION:  A couple of online shops have shown the new Hoth Speederbike set. Will we be seeing more of these (I'm going to make up a new phrase here) "Extended" Universe type sets in the near future?

ANSWER:  That's the only non-entertainment battle pack planned for now.  We have been looking at those images for some time and looking for the opportunity to do that one.  We can confirm that it will NOT be shipping in Spring under our 87503, but it will show up under a new asst later in Fall.  Fans will have to wait a bit longer for it, but it will be worth the wait.


QUESTION:   I recently discovered I still had my old Droid Factory Playset.   Is there any chance of an updated version?  Or a build your own Astromech type set?

ANSWER:  Well that's a very interesting question.  While there are no plans for playsets in Star Wars, the play pattern you describe would be fun.  Stay tuned….


QUESTION:  So, you guys are now going to be making the FX Lightsabers (previously made by Master Replicas).   Will be seeing new characters/versions or will you focus on unmade sabers?   Will your pricepoints be in line with MR or lower due to your manufacturing capabilities?

ANSWER:  We are very excited to be continuing this great line. Our initial plan is to continue the existing product line, and eventually look at additional opportunities whether that be new/unproduced charecters or additional FX products.  We have not announced pricing yet, but we do not anticipate a change from the marketplace as it exists today.




GALACTIC HUNTER

QUESTION:  Why can't Hasbro get the Battle Droid plastic back to the quality of the Episode I Battle Droids? Every single Battle Droid since the (Power of the Jedi) Boomer Damage Battle Droid has been made of fairly soft and extremely unsuitable plastic. The legs warp, the hands are too soft to hold weapons, etc. Is there too much plasticizer in the mix? Is the plastic just too thin? What's the issue behind the scenes that is making our favorite killing machines so limp and listless? [From Jedi Crippler]

ANSWER:  The issue is with the design.  To be as accurate to the droid design, some of our figures were made with very thin legs. Because of this, the specific plasticity cannot be too hard or we risk breakage and sharp points hazards.  Even when we ask the factory to be vigilant, it is still difficult to control such a fine line with thin parts.  We are aware of the problem, and are taking it into account in designs for the next generations of droids.


QUESTION:  Now that art of Darth Plagueis has been revealed is there a better chance of us getting a figure of him, possibly in the next two years? [From Rune Haako]

ANSWER:  At one time, he was high on our wish-list but because of lack of reference, we were asked to put him aside and he slipped down the list. Now that there is certainly more "news," we will revisit the opportunity. It won't be for a while though… but the chances of seeing him come out some day are pretty good.


QUESTION:  Hasbro and Target's exclusive Ultimate Battle Packs were a tremendous holiday gift success. What are the odds that we'll see more of this concept in 2008 applied to the likes of Jabba's Palace, the Cantina, or even the Carbon Freezing Chamber where Hasbro can mix excellent heroes with obscure aliens/troops to please both kids and collectors?

ANSWER:  We hope that this format will continue in 2008 and beyond, matching up the right retail opportunity with the right theme. Your suggestions are very cool and may or may not be close to some of our own ideas. For now, though, we're going to keep specifics of our own top concepts close to the vest.




IMPERIAL SHIPYARDS - Forum Registration Required

QUESTION:  In the answers to the 12/21 Q&A, someone asked about Obi-Wan and a tractor beam console accessory in the basic line, to which you replied something like "it is not a possibility in the basic line." However, you already have the makings of a great ultimate battle pack with 2 of the 25th anniversary doorways (that had Luke & Leia in the chasm swing), create the complete tractor beam console, and then add the best Luke w/stormtrooper belt, Leia, Obi-Wan, and a few stormtroopers. Would something like this be a possiblity and something Hasbro would be interested in creating?

ANSWER:  What you have outlined is something we could do, but it would still cost a considerable amount and we would have to be convinced that it is something that kids would want as well, and that has been the sticking point with playsets - kids don't want them like they used to, and the costs for development/materials/labor is very high.


QUESTION:  Can we expect a new SA correct scale General Grievous in the Clone Wars Line this year, or perhaps a true V-wing pilot?

ANSWER:  It is to early to announce anything specific regarding specific Clone Wars. Announcements will be made at Toy Fair. As for a V-Wing, there are no plans right now to bring out a true V-Wing Pilot, but that is something we are looking at for the longer term.


QUESTION:  Hasbro, what are your thoughts of adding interchangable heads as pack-ins for figures like imperial officers. I would think by doing this you could increase sales as it would be an easy way to be able to swap heads with other figures, thus creating your own figure.

ANSWER:  We have no plans to do this. We think that most collectors would want to showcase the range of heads on shelf anyway, so if we go to the effort of making extra heads, we would offer them as complete figures.





JEDI INSIDER

QUESTION:  What can you tell us about "Captain Rex"? We hear he is going to be a mail-away figure this year. Who is he, what role in Clone Wars does he play and what does he look like?

ANSWER:  Jay - all good questions which will be revealed in time. We will say that he is a central figure in the new Clone Wars series, and that there will be a special promotion so fans can get him first.


QUESTION:  Will Star Wars/Transformers continue in 2008 and if so, any hints as to what we might see?

ANSWER:   You bet. Up next are a pair of redeco/slight retools for this Spring, including a maroon Obi-Wan/Episode II Starfighter with hyperspace ring and Clone Pilot/Clone Wars Republic Gunship.


QUESTION:  Any chance of seeing playsets or any large vehicles released in 2008? If so, can you give us some hints as to what they might be?

ANSWER:  Regarding playsets, our stance has not changed..kid demand is still low for playsets, and they do not justify the extraordinary cost to develop and produce. Our focus will remain on vehicles as the natural extension of the 3-3/4" figure play pattern. There will be a "big" announcement at Toy Fair regarding a new vehicle for Clone Wars....stay tuned.



To be continued in the next post
« Last Edit: January 19, 2008, 10:56:09 AM by Gold 5 » Logged

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« Reply #1 on: January 19, 2008, 10:51:50 AM »

Q&A Part 2 for the week of January 18th, 2008


JEDI NEWS

QUESTION:  Obviously there's so many connections between Star Wars and Indiana Jones including the fact that you're working on both products lines. Consequently, will we see any cross over products this year, maybe even a Harrison Ford Evolutions set or will there be anything else?

ANSWER:  Right now, on both properties, the focus has been on the characters rather than the "men behind the masks" as it were.  It's doubtful that we would do something like that, but if there was one actor where it made sense, it's with Harrison Ford.  We won't rule it out, but right now we just aren't focused there.


QUESTION:  You've already let us know that there'll be about 53 figures in then basic line next year and that Legends will continue with the additional wave of 5 figures that you let us vote for last year.  Can you let us know roughly how many figures we'll see in the Clone Wars line so we can work out how many single carded figures we can expect to see this year (also in which month will the Clone Wars figures be available)?

ANSWER:  All of the information about Clone Wars will be made available at Toy Fair in February, James - so it's too early to release any specific detail.


QUESTION:  As normal the UK Toy Fair takes place before the US Toy Fair.  Will the UK have to wait until the US Toy Fair to see the big Star Wars reveal or will we get to see some (if not all) of the new products at the UK Toy Fair first?

ANSWER:  Some product news will undoubtedly be released at the UK Toy Fair and Nuremburg, but we are holding most of the new product news, and details, for NY Toy Fair.




MOUSEDROID

QUESTION:  Dear Hasbro, First of all, thank you for making the 30th anniversary of STAR WARS a year to remember. Not only did you make some of the best figures ever but, for me anyway, you made the collecting FUN. Anticipating the different waves and then tracking them down, only to find my favorite characters done so well was rewarding. Wave 5 was my favorite by a long shot. Which brings me to my question.
After Reven, Malak and the new evolutions sets with Mandalore and Nihilus, will Hasbro be continuing with any KOTOR figures? Basic figures in waves or more in multipacks? You seem to have covered the main sith/bad guys but we need some lightsiders to fight against. Or Does Hasbro think the good guys will not sell as well? Once again keep up the bloody good work mates!
Regards,
LukeSparkewalker
 

ANSWER:  Thanks for the nice comments, Luke. We are glad you have enjoyed the 30th Anniversary collection as much as we have in bringing it to you.

Right now, we don't have plans to do any more for KOTOR characters for a while. It doesn't mean we won't come back to KOTOR again, especially if favorites rise to the top to the next time we do a fans' choice type of poll. After all, Revan and Malak were on there because *you* the fans voted for them in the Toy Fare / wizardworld.com poll, so without your voice it is likely that they would not have come out at all. So keep the flame alive for your KOTOR favorites and be sure to let your voice be heard next time there is an opportunity.
 

QUESTION:  Gday from Downunder Hasbro,
The 30th Anniversary has been a major success both here and abroad. Thank you for listening to the fans in regards to and allowing us to vote on the various websites for the Fan Choice Figure!!! Now as we move into Expanded Universe territory with The Force Unleashed, the soon to be CG cartoon Clone Wars and of course the various novels available etc, etc. My question is.....Will Hasbro EVER make the evil Yuzhan Vong figure from the New Jedi Order series of novels?Huh?
Bring on 2008-Starwars is FOREVER!!!
From,
Glennfett
 
ANSWER:  We have some good news for you - we can indeed confirm that a Yuzhan Vong is in fact in development, but when and how it will be introduced (as a basic figure or as a multi-pack) has yet to be announced. Look for more information around Comic Con timing if all goes as planned..
 

QUESTION:  G’day Hasbro,
Recently I purchased a couple of your "New" Destroyer Droids with Shield "effect". Firstly, I think the figure looks great with the blast "effects" on their guns. My problem, and the problem I hear a lot of other people have with the figure, is the Shield itself. The first part of the problem is when you join 2 halves together, the Destroyer Droid does not quite fit inside.
The second part of the problem is the color of the shield. It just does not seem translucent enough. In the films, you can clearly see the Droid inside the shield. With your "effect", if you're able to get a droid inside, you cannot see it. I'm going to assume that there is no chance of you redoing the Shield (making it bigger), but if you ever decided to re-release the figure down the road (either as a single carded figure on in a multipack) would you consider making it a little more translucent, with a blue tinge of course?
Many Thanks
Commander Collars
 
ANSWER:  Commander, the size was based on the need to really get the packaging down to the minimum. It takes a little work, but we have found that the droids can fit without a problem if you are patient.

Regarding the color….this was an unavoidable consequence of needing to hide the "ugly" aspect of the method that was required to join the halves - the pins and sockets. If we made the shield more translucent, the effect would have been ruined by seeing the pins. There just wasn't a good way to accomplish the translucency, so the relative opacity gave it the best overall toy-like look. At the end of the day, it was one of those things we tried, and learned a bit about in the process that can influence what we do in the future. Right now, we don't have plans to re-release the shield or make it larger, though that is always subject to change.




RAVING TOY MANIAC

QUESTION:  Any chance of bringing forward that one vehicle that hasn't been out in the new line, the Twin Pod Cloud Car?

ANSWER:  While there is a possibility we will update it in the future, the Cloud Car is much farther down on our list than other choices. It suffers a bit being not a very aggressive looking vehicle, and not that cool among among kids. It also seems to be one of the most abundant vintage vehicle and can be had very inexpensively, so we just haven't felt compelled to devote a slot to it yet...


QUESTION:  Any chance of seeing Droid based Star Wars Transformers, like an R2-D2 or C-3PO that convert into something?

ANSWER:  It's a matter of size, character expression, and natural fit between the modes. First, R2-D2 and C-3PO are already robots (well, droids). Generally, Star Wars Transformers make sense in the film context with their character tying into vehicles with which they are associated and there aren't any good ties with the droids and vehicles that are compelling (other than perhaps R2-D2 and a Starfighter). In addition, while R2-D2 would be our first choice, a robot mode for him have to change his silhouette significantly and would not really deliver on R2 that we know and love. That's why the humanoid characters work the best.


QUESTION:  Are there any figures you completely under-estimated the demand for before it was released?

ANSWER:  Absolutely. During Episode III, we completely underestimated the sheer number of Darth Vaders we would need due to the sheer number of kids that wanted to get perhaps the most iconic movie character of all time. Of course, Episode III exceeded our wildest expectations for the number of kids who "had to have" Star Wars, so that's a great "problem" to have that has continued to this day.

In fact, little known fact, to this day Vader has been the only character we have ever "solid-packed" in basic figure master cartons to keep up demand! That's right, during 2005, there were entire cases of Vaders being put out on shelf - you may not have noticed it because they would sell down quickly. In addition, the factories were working feverishly to keep up with increased demand on R2-D2 and Obi-Wan. Kid demand for these three remain at huge levels today, which is why we always keep them in rotation. There are also some figures that have chased more reently as well. Most notable were Commander Cody and Scorch in 2006, and McQuarrie Boba Fett this last year.




REBELSCUM

QUESTION:  We know that the 7 figures from The Force Unleashed were delayed and were rescheduled to the 2008 line, but what about the coins that were planned for these figures? Was development of these coins far enough along that you could still make them? If so, are there any plans to make them available, perhaps as an exclusive or a mail-in promotion?

ANSWER:  The coins were far along and could be produced, but we don't have plans to since we "replaced" their numbers in the system with what became Wave 7.5.


QUESTION:  Three words: More Female Figures!

Okay, more words: While we love Clones, Jedi, Droids, multiple versions of Vader/Anakin/Obi-Wan/Luke/Yoda, how about some more female figures? Not just Leia or Padmé, either! There's a lot of females in the Star Wars saga who never seem to get their day. Any chances we will see someone like Aunt Beru, Toryn Farr, or dare we say it?---Yarna?

ANSWER:  Yes! A few more females are on the way, with at least one of your list seeing shelves in 2008, and at least one more planned (but subject to change) for 2009.


QUESTION:  Will we ever see a SA sculpt Gray Coruscant Clone Trooper? The sculpt used on the one packed in the "Clone Attack on Coruscant" battle pack isn't the best, and I really think this figure deserves to be upgraded. After all, it is actually IN the movie, whereas other clones that have gotten the SA treatment were not (442nd, 5th Fleet, etc.).

ANSWER:  The clone in the Clone Attack on Coruscant battle pack is for all intents the Clone Commander from Clone Trooper-to-Stormtrooper Evolutions set with some slight deco changes and interchangeable belts. So...we considered the figure to be SA to begin with (aside from waist articulation). You make a good point that this paint scheme can be used on our other SA clone body at some point, and this would be a very good candidate for a future Saga Legends-type figure down the road.




SANDTROOPERS

QUESTION:  In the Battlefront packs, why were stands included with the droids but not with the Clones? And while I'm on the subject, why were there only 5? You put 7 droids in the pack, yet only 5 stands. And I realize that the Destroyer Driod has no pegholes to use a stand, but you included stands with R2-D2 and R5-D4 in the SAGA Collection and they have no pegholes either.

ANSWER:  Well, you caught us doing something a "little extra" at the very last minute because, well, we could.  There were a few pennies to work with on the droid set, so the designer snuck in some extra bases, as many as he could afford.  There wan't room in the cost to include them with the Clone set, so the Droids were the lucky recipients.


QUESTION:  Do you have any plans to upgrade the plastic used to manufacture some of the parts for the figures? A lot of weapons and droid arms and legs are made with a plastic that is so soft that it usually bends beyond repair just removing the figures from the packages. Why do you need to use so many of those clear rubber bands?

ANSWER:  To address your first question, we have been asking for more rigid weapons when possible, but there are some caveats to consider.  In the interest of conserving resources and managing costs, we allow our vendors to reuse unused or scrapped plastic components at times.  This reworked plastic, or "regrind", is often used for black parts since black will mask any previous colors thrown into the mix.  Since our accessories are black, sometimes they are shot with the reused components.  Also, with each heating/melting cycle, the plastic loses some stiffness, so that is why there is sometimes a range of stiffness on parts.  Long answer to a short question!   On your second point, we have really striven to pack out our characters in the most dynamic poses possible to showcase the characters and bring out sets to life.  The clear rubber bands have been the cost effective, and we feel most aesthetically pleasing, solution to this challenge.  Alternatives, like wire ties, are more costly and consume more resources.  At times, in order to make sure that nothing slips in transit, there may be a few more bands than seems necessary, but we really try to keep things to a minimum.


QUESTION:  Do you think that re-issuing some of the Vintage style figures and previous excluisves via the Legends line will hurt the sale of these types of figures going forward? Vintage style go for anywhere from $10 - $13 depending on where they are purchased, and exclusives can go for more than that. Why should collectors who only want the figure - openers, who are going to remove the figures from the packages and throw the cardboard away - shell out that kind of money when there's a chance that a year or two later the figures will be re-issued on a regular cardback at stores for $7 (like the 07 Boba Fett and Biker Scout)?

ANSWER:  It will not harm out future strategy, in part because that strategy will need to change and evolve.  So before we answer specifically, we need to provide some thinking on Vintage as we have seen it to exist the last few years.  We have already been looking at all aspects and challenges of carrying vintage forward as an ongoing assortment with the "original" definition - that is, an all-new, premium OTC-dedicated format that can command a higher price several dollars above basic figure prices.  Since many of our basic figures now are at or near vintage-quality, and the stable of real strong versions of core OTC characters to anchor future vintage waves is getting thin, we just don't feel the future is there for Vintage as we have been bringing it out.  When we come out with vintage next, we'll be looking at all aspects to try and solve the needs of collectors, understanding that packaging, articulation & character selection are all important components of making a compelling line.  This is why we have done polling both at conventions and online to try and get collector input on the issue facing us, and that has been a big help.  So back to your original question, we think using our library of great figure in either Saga Legends of other venues (battle packs, comic packs, exclusives) where it makes sense to deliver our best offering and provided high-demand characters to collectors.




SW COLLECTOR

QUESTION:  With Battle Packs such as the Bantha and Tusken Raiders out this year, is there any chance that a similar pack containing a Dewback and Sandtroopers will be released anytime soon?

ANSWER:  There is a possibility that we would do this within the next couple of years, but at this stage nothing has been confirmed. It remains one of those strong possibilities given the right opportunity and resources.


QUESTION:  For future Clone Troopers with removable helmets, has there been any consideration to make both the phase 1 and phase 2 helmets for the same figure as accessories? Basically, the helmets are the only thing different about them, so it sounds like a fun idea.

ANSWER:  We don't have any plans for "generic" clones right now. Our strategy has been to make them as scene (movie, and even EU) specific as possible to tell the best story in packaging and graphics. If and when we ever do generic trooper packs, what you suggest is an interesting idea.

QUESTION:  Are there any plans to release a Clone Swamp Speeder from "Revenge of the Sith" in the 3 3/4" scale? It seems like a nice vehicle for the $20.00 line.

ANSWER:  This vehicle has been near the top of the list numerous times, but keeps getting bumped in favor of some other ideas. As it is a true on-screen vehicle from Episode III, there is a strong likelihood it will see glory sometime down the road. With the vehicles we have in the pipeline, though, we think you'll be plenty happy waiting in the meantime.





THE JAWA

QUESTION:  In 2008 will Hasbro's Star Wars toy production and distribution take a backseat to Indiana Jones, or some other film-based toys, just as it did in 2007 to Transformers and Spiderman 3?

ANSWER:  No, nor did it in 2007.  We encourage you to another look back at what we have been able to bring to fans in terms of breadth and depth, the number of new things we have been trying and bringing out, and Star Wars performance as one of the top boys brands last year, and we think you'll agree that we are more devoted than ever to making sure that we maintain our connection to collectors and kids.


QUESTION:  Do you have any plans to go beyond the first two waves of "The Force Unleashed" figures? Now that the case breakdowns have been released by Entertainment Earth and StarWarsShop.com it looks as if there is only 1 of each figure in each case. Any chance that we can get solid TFU case packs as revisions? Or maybe have these figures slotted back in somewhere else down the line?

ANSWER:  The waves that will go to mass retailers will have 1 each of the TFU characters due to capacity constraints.  There is a plan to get the figures that will have higher demand - such as Vader and the two troopers, possibly the Shadow Guard, into the line eventually.  There is at least one case pack ration that has been developed for Internet accounts that has the three army-builders double-packed (plus two Kashyyyk Troopers)..ask your online retailer for information on that case ratio if that
suits your needs.


QUESTION:  First, I would like to thank you for including Darth Revan and Darth Malak in the 2007 lineup. As I'm sure the whole Star Wars team at Hasbro is aware, characters from the Old Republic era are still some of the most popular EU characters today, even among fans, who like myself, have never played either of the games or read any of the comics.  So my question is, besides the Old Republic characters included in the 2008 Evolutions sets, will there be any more KOTOR figures in 2008 from either the comics or the games?

ANSWER:  Right now, we do not have plans for more KOTOR characters in 2008, but that doesn't mean we won't go back to KOTOR (games or comics) in the future, and are looking at opportunities.




To be continued in the next post
« Last Edit: January 21, 2008, 03:48:47 PM by Gold 5 » Logged

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« Reply #2 on: January 19, 2008, 11:10:11 AM »

Q&A Roundup for the week of January 18th - Part 3


THE PRIVATE UNIVERSE

QUESTION:  Most collectors have now seen the intial wave of Indiana Jones figures on StarWarsShop.com. What's the
rationale behind not revealing the full case assortment (there are 'mystery' figures), when we all know the characters you aren't showing us because they were previewed at Comic Con last year?

ANSWER:  Actually, we have not revealed any characters from Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, which are shipping in each case pack alongside the classic figures. Details on the full lineup will be revealed at Toy Fair - stay tuned!


QUESTION:  The new Hoth Patrol battle (cold weather scouts on speeder bikes) pack looks awesome... almost. Why do you
persist in using vertical handlebars when you have a movie-accurate horizontal tooling? You've gone to the trouble of kit-bashing an awesome new trooper for the pack, any chance we'll see the minor handlebar revision before release - thereby making it a home
run?

ANSWER:  We use tools that are available to us at the vendor we are working wiith us on this pack. We will look what is possible for this one, and whether a change at this point is possible.


QUESTION:  Wave 8 (McQuarrie Rebel Concept, Voolif Monn etc) of the TAC line has yet to reach retailers in the UK -
any idea when it'll be arriving?

ANSWER:  We have been assured that figures are coming, and should be out around Feb/March.




YODAS NEWS

QUESTION:  I really enjoyed the Target exclusive Hoth and Endor Battle Packs that came out this winter. They were an excellent mix of retooled and repainted figures and vehicles and the excellent packaging makes for a great display piece. I'm curious why didn't the Endor set come with the Bunker from the mid-90's and will we see this format again - preferably with Jabba's Skiff hovering over a diorama of the Sarlaac pit?

ANSWER:  We felt that the Speeder Bikes added the play value we were looking for, so we decided to pass on the bunker in favor of that. We simply could not afford to put it in without sacrificing the figure quantity either. Based on the warm reception to these sets, we are optimistic that we will be able to bring more out, but as always is subject to costing, timing, and tooling availability to make it work. The one you mention would make a great display, no doubt about it, but would require a much larger tooling budget that we could probably bear.


QUESTION:  Are there any plans in the coming months for Hasbro to release play sets? Something like the old sets, Cantina, Death Star and so forth? Also, what is the word on the new Order 66? We have seen pictures of possible clones from these new set, so can you confirm them and when can we expect them?

ANSWER:  There are no plans to release any play sets. There will indeed be a sequel to Order 66, comprised of six more sets that will be exclusive for Target. We have tried to make most of the Jedi in this series as new as possible, tooling up at least wholly new figure and parts of others. The plan is to be on shelf the beginning of April. Sets include #1: Obi-Wan Kenobi & Arc Trooper Commander (red deco); #2: Anakin Skywalker & ARC Trooper (blue deco); #3 Tsui Choi (new figure) & BARC Trooper; #4 (Emperor Palpatine & Commander Vill; #5 Luminara Unduli & AT-RT Driver; and #6 Master Sev (new head sculpt) & ARC Trooper (yellow deco).


QUESTION:  The modern vintage line’s future uncertain mainly due to costs at retail, and the fact that regular figures have caught up to the quality of the modern vintage. Why not have a parallel line like you did with TAC and saga legends? You can have equality in figure quality, and this line can hose the vintage style cards, this can bring the entire vintage card back line to the market with parallel pricing, or maybe a simply $1 more if justified by costs.

ANSWER:  We have thought about this, but unfortunately there are several key barriers to doing this that relate to retail and our own productivity, including the figure count we would need to devote to this to keep it fresh (which would pull from the main figure assortment). Also, having vintage as a "permanent" figure stripe does not meet with out need to have a very consistent, uniform line look at retail. This strategy worked in Fall '04 when the line look was black & silver, but this year and beyond it would not fit. We love vintage and the great tie back to the roots of the line, and there are high odds of it coming back again (and again), but there are just challenges with resources and timing. We will get to it before too long, though.




To be continued as more answers come in!
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