Q&A: Star Wars Vehicles, Exclusive Boxed Sets, and 6-Inch Accessories

By Adam Pawlus — Sunday, June 28, 2015

1. Whatever happened to Rebels Vehicles Wave 2 AT-DP with Pilot? Is it still coming out?

While we know packaging exists, we don't yet know if any got made on a grand scale. If it did get made, it's entirely possible that this exclusive might get dumped to Ross/TJ Maxx/Marshalls this fall (or next year) as to not distract from the new stuff for the new movie... or it might just show up as part of Target's Star Wars program alongside the new movie stuff. Given the awkward short distribution of a lot of Rebels stuff I'm more inclined to think it'll show up somewhere weird but I don't know yet.



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2. What can you tell us about the upcoming Jabba's Rancor Pit set?

Anything new? I've read Jabba is a new sculpt, but to my untrained eye I can't tell.

Is everything else a repack, or is there significant repaint?

And any idea what the odd accessory is to Luke's immediate left?

The shared Toys R Us/Comic-Con exclusive Rancor Pit will be sold at the Entertainment Earth booth (#2343) and ToysRUs.com for sure - and if history is any indication, will also show up at retail stores eventually. At $130 a lot of people are wondering if they're getting their money's worth or not, and if you're a long time collector that isn't in to package variants it's tipping toward "not." But if you missed these figures - it's a pretty good deal.

The current photography doesn't let us see if there are some changes to the figures, as such. As of right now it looks like the Gamorrean Guard, Luke Skywalker, and C-3PO are repacks. Leia is a repack, complete with her glass, but so far it looks like they left her spare "sitting" legs out of the box.

The Rancor looks like it may be a new paint job - it's hard to tell given the angles, lighting, and fact that I only bought one of the two on the last go-round.

Given the deco and the nature of the shots I've seen so far, I would say Jabba is a new (or at least partially new) sculpt with new deco. The head does look different from the last version, but I'm flat-out unsure about the body being more than deco. As such, even I'm on the fence with how to handle this one - I'd say variation completists and packaged fans need this, but if you're happy with the Jabba you have you may not need to buy this set. The deco is unquestionably better - as such I would like to get this set - but the figures aren't different enough to stand out and it seems I'm in danger of amassing a Rancor army at this rate.




3. Hey Adam, a couple of questions: I got the 6 inch Cody and although the head/helmet is too tall on the post, it isn't bad. I'm going to add my own flair to make it look "cooler". The first question is the new line coming the reason or one of the reasons that the 3 3/4 and 6" are not receiving further pack ins/accessories? As in the budget for these not there because they are being diverted to all the new product being made for Ep7? Also, what would be the closest size to make my own holographic emperor for Cody? I was thinking the pack ins that came with the figures way back when would be a good size but the emperor/Sidious has a lightsaber raised up in battle. Any thoughts?

Hasbro has cost targets it needs to reach. Certain items allow for heavy mold reuse, and others don't. Marvel Legends costs about the same, but many figures include zero accessories and/or reuse existing body sculpts in order to keep the costs where they need to be and also to pay for the swell build-a-figure set. Meanwhile, most Star Wars 6-inch figures all have at least one or two accessories. Sure, Greedo only has a gun, but Han Solo has two sets of hands, a gun, and a spare holster. The Sandtrooper is (and most likely will continue to be) repainted frequently but at the same time he has three guns, a backpack, and a pauldron. I actually felt that, on the whole, they're delivering a pretty complete experience for most figures - the only real exception I might say is Obi-Wan Kenobi with only a two-part lightsaber when some sort of cloak would have done a lot to make the figure look fancier. Granted, cloth cloaks usually aren't good at the 3 3/4-inch scale so seeing that they really made it nice with Palpatine opens the door for future releases. (That's code for "They're probably thinking about repacking it with new accessories.") Episode 7 is its own line with its own product - Hasbro has to create and develop hundreds if not thousands of unique items every year and accessories aren't going to suffer because they're working on a new movie line.

...granted, the current collector line might. Depending on how you view things.

I'd suggest looking up the 2002 Count Dooku figure and seeing if that micro Palpatine holograhic figure does what you need. It might be too big, even though it came from a 3 3/4-inch figure.

With Emperor Palpatine, my guess is Hasbro realized (unlike Yoda) Palpatine is a full-size figure and in Return of the Jedi had no lightsaber. They can probably rerelease that body with a new cloak, new head, and new lightsaber later and get another $20 out of you. I saw the Yoda lightsaber as a nice bonus, but obviously not from the original trilogy. Considering Yoda is shorter and less articulated than cheaper 3 3/4-inch figures, things like the pipe, snake, coat, lightsaber, gimer stick, and so forth are needed to help fans not say "well this is a crappy deal." On the other hand, Palpatine (in his ROTJ costume) walked around with a cane - the only accessory he used may be snap-on lightning and so far Hasbro hasn't done a lot of that thing in that scale. Admittedly they could (and probably should) take a page out of the Masters of the Universe Classics book and tuck in bonus accessories for your other figures in some circumstances, but I am guessing Hasbro would prefer to just keep the costs of their figures lower and put the rest toward salaries or development.




If you love classic video games - and that's a coded way of saying "the ones I like" - you simply must read Jeremy Parish's The Anatomy of Games. I've been a big fan of his writing on the subject for years, and if you kinda love classic 2D Metroid and the best we had from the 8-bit NES through the GameBoy Advance, this is an undeniable treasure that will suck up any reading time you may have. It is most worth it.

Got The Black Series Boushh Leia, Cody, and IG-88 this week. That is their order of goodness. IG-88 has my vote for worst figure in the line because it can't stand due to (at least my sample) having uneven legs. The articulation on the rubbery, skinny legs won't help it stay upright - you'll need a small waist-clippy doll stand. Leia Boushh is taller than Slave Leia with much, much, much better face paint. Cody is pretty good... I won't say spectacular, the helmet is small and the dirt is absent, but it's pretty good otherwise. Also rubbery. Get Leia first, you're welcome.

We're almost at Comic-Con and we may be only two weeks away from knowing the opening salvo for toys for the new movie. Even I'm not sure exactly who is in which assortments yet, and I'm pretty excited to see how things will ultimately turn out. If we're really on board for a September release that means we might be looking at final toys rather than prototypes. It's also not entirely unrealistic to think that we may see leaks before Hasbro announces them... but if you compare this year to previous movies, I gotta give them credit for making it this long without the general public finding out.

When you think about it, it's all really silly - the short "anticipation" window might hurt sales rather than lead to maddening levels of "how come I still don't have that?" - which I think worked really well for the first prequel. The brief window of awareness telling you that there's a new thing that you should buy is rather pointless. But being told "you can't have that" for several months? And then finally get to make the purchase? Well, there's a reason there was a fever for Phantom Menace toys that the subsequent movies lacked.

I feel - and I'm sure Hasbro and Lucasfilm disagree - that showing us unpainted samples to be followed by painted ones and then packaged ones is smart. It means even the least curious customer will engage with the product at least two or three times before being given an opportunity to buy, and each reveal gives you, the consumer, an excuse to talk about the product with your fellow fans. It's free buzz that you don't get just by saying "Here's the final figure, it's $8 if you want it."

With Transformers we just had BotCon. We saw 2016 figures - two waves of them, so even if one wave comes out before Toy Fair we've still got quite a bit to be excited about for quite some time. With Star Wars, nobody in the public sphere knows more than one remaining wave of figures - and singles already seem to be showing up. A little anticipation goes a long way - especially given that the movie is only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to new toys. The real fun starts at the toy store.

--Adam Pawlus

Got questions? Email me with Q&A in the subject line now! I'll answer your questions as soon as time (or facts) permit.



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