Galactic Hunter.com's Star Wars Q&A with Adam Pawlus
May 19, 2008
1. I have a vintage question for you. A while back I saw an auciton on ebay for a loose mini rig that came with the original box and a little booklet called a planetary map. Well, back in the day I got the Power of the Force vintage Sand Skiff for my birthday and I always remembered that it came with a planetary map of Tatooine, which I lost at some point. Friends have told me for years that I'm on crack and that I imagined it. Do you recall the planetary map? If so, what do you think the chances are that hasbro would reprint these, or come up with new ones? Planetary maps with guides to famous battles of the clone wars would be so cool.
Planetary Maps were a sort of re-branded product catalog used by Kenner in the waning days of the original line. You'll find them in a limited number of Power of the Force and Droids items-- I'm fairly sure no Ewoks items were packaged with them. There were three versions: Tatooine, Death Star, and Endor. On one side was a more or less complete list of the entire Kenner line, showcasing such gems as the A-Wing, the Tatooine Skiff, and some Power of the Force mock-ups of items which never actually sported that logo.
On the other side was a map with some paintings, some more or less tracings, showing areas of the planet and some key events that happened there. They're pretty neat. I think the chances of Hasbro reprinting them is roughly zero, due to the fact one side is outdated product information. (Hasbro assumes-- correctly-- that fans and kids can't tell the difference between a collectible reprint and an actual piece of marketing to sell currently available product.) As the line marches on toward infinity or oblivion, it's entirely possible Hasbro will decide to rebrand their product catalogs into something more collectible just like this-- but no such plans have been made yet.
2. Ok, so i have been going from store to store (even store websites) to try and find a copy of Star Wars Galaxies..... None of the stores around here have it.. They all seem to have a strategy guide for the game, but not the game itself.... Ive checked the Toys r Us , Best Buy, and EB Games websites: and none have the game.... Can i only buy this online from SOE?
Depending on the stores you have in your area, this may be the case. It seems there are a few people selling the title online (I just checked Google's shopping portal) and it seems some new (and used) copies are out there to be bought. It seems it's not super-common, but one can be found with a little bit of extra digging... which may explain why it isn't the #1 MMO thee days. If you can get it from Sony, you might want to do that.
3. I'd like to ask if there will ever be a release or a re-release of the Fett Legacy ESB Boba Fett in the near future, in the mould and paint work as shown the Powerpoint slide prototype released in 2007. It had the nice paint apps as one expects out of the modern exclusive Vintage Line, and moreover it had the better wider and studier looking helmet. The current helmet is not only too narrow but hugs onto the figure's nose like spandex. As there's a lot of fans of both Boba and Jango, do you think or can you ask Hasbro this question for us. I have heard somewhere that Hasbro may re-release this Fett Legacy pack again with the chest insignia but do you know 1. when and 2. if there will be the above essential changes?
The item is what it is. While Hasbro has already confirmed they will rerelease it with the added chest insignia, there are no plans to change the sculpts, or anything on Jango. Running changes happen all the time but I wouldn't expect anything this significant. Deco changes are cheap, mold changes are going to cost you. I agree, it sucks that Boba's helmet is too snug-- my Boba Fett has a white ding on its nose which was put there before I even opened it. Design flaws happen quite a bit in the modern line, but if you had a line with over 1,000 figures, odds are there would be a few goofs no matter who was working on it.
4. It seemes that holographic figures have come a long way since the POTF spirit of Obi-Wan way back in the late 90's. These have always been some of my favorite figures to collect. I especially love the new Galactic Heroes Spirit of Obi-Wan. Do you think that LEGO would ever get on board with holographic figures? I would LOVE to see Spirits of Yoda, Obi-Wan, and Anakin from the Ewok celebration in Return of the Jedi.
You may be in the minority, as most fans see clear figures as an obvious cash-in which allows Hasbro to make a new figure cheaply and with fewer resources (no paint) than the normal figure. I agree they can be cool... but I think it's something that's more tolerated than loved. So far, LEGO has made no plans known to do an entirely clear Star Wars figure, but that might be neat-- they did appear in the video game, after all.
5. will there be any evolutions sets for indiana jones like the legacy of the indy lady?
Nothing that Hasbro has announced. There haven't been any rumblings of multipacks beyond the deluxe figures at this point, so I'd not expect anything in the immediate future. For Star Wars, Evolutions makes a lot of sense due to the incredible selection of characters and the insatiable appetite of fans for new product. In the case of what I perceive you to be asking for-- as that was the whole email-- I wouldn't bank on it. Hasbro already has two versions of Marion available along with Elsa on the way. Willie Scott is expected in an upcoming Temple of Doom wave, so really, the bases are covered-- for the fans who just prefer a boxed set format, odds are you're not going to see anything like this unless Hasbro sees massive success with Indy to the point where higher-end, completely collector-driven product is a strong possibility.
I'd bank on "never."
6. can you tell me if there are any differences between the carded
version of Commander Neyo and the one relased in the "Treachery on
Saleucami" battle pack last year?
On the surface, these figures are identical. They have the same body, paint job, articulation, and were made but a few months apart.
The hardcore fanatic will notice there is, however, one slight difference. Due to how the Battle Pack version was packaged, the figure has a slightly wider stance-- his legs were stretched out just a little bit. Since the basic carded figure was not packaged sitting on a bike, his legs were not stretched. The "stretching" can be corrected-- or added-- with the use of appropriately hot boiling water, which will soften the plastic and allow you to reshape it ever so slightly. If you're a one-of-everybody loose figure fan, one or the other will do-- there's no reason to get both.
7. So what's left for the 30th Anniversary Collection before the switch to the Legacy Collection? As far as I know, there's that "Clones & Commanders" TRU gift pack that's all repacks and a silver figure, and a couple more Force Unleashed things (the Rancor, and 2 Wal-mart 3-packs with new stormtroopers). Oh, and that Stormtrooper Commander. Did anyone find out what the deal with that one was? Last I heard it was an exclusive somewhere, but I don't remember if anyone said where.
Since the last time someone asked, it appears to me that very little is left. First, that "Clones & Commanders" set isn't coming to the USA-- it was a European exclusive which was mistakenly listed on a few web sites. The box set was just a series of repackaged figures with (as far as I've been told) absolutely no changes to the product inside the box. Don't expect to see those.
The Stormtrooper Commander is still on the way and nobody knows what the deal is. My money is on a gift-with-purchase at Toys "R" Us, Best Buy, or GameStop. Hasbro has been particularly cozy with Best Buy lately, so anything could happen here. I'm not expecting it until September at the earliest.
The Battle on Mygeeto Battle Pack is still on the way, and features several unique figures. As such, it's still coming too.
The Battle Rancor just hit, as did the two Toys "R" Us exclusive Battle Packs. (Availability may be spotty, they're just rolling out.) The Wal-Mart 3-packs for the Force Unleashed are, according to most data, not coming until the game hits. Which may mean September, but leaks happen all the time and these sets are starting to show up via overseas auctions in the package and out. It looks like some stuff might start hitting in June/July, like the Droid Factory figures, but one can only trust Hasbro's dates so much-- I wouldn't bank on a whole heck of a lot of anything until July 26 unless it got leaked. Some stores are crazy about holding things for a big street date, even if that particular SKU is not tied to said street date.
8. In response to last weeks #3, Hasbro had this response back on April 8th:
SW Collector April 8, 2008
1.) Hasbro, do you have any updates on the remaining Saga Legends Sandtroopers that you said we might see this spring? I tried to jot down all the "forthcoming" ones mentioned after the main four in the fall and here's what I came up with:
5. Dirty with black pauldron and probably Evolutions but maybe TSC body
6. Super-dirty Evolutions to be possibly released as a last shot
7. Clean with black (unpainted white) pauldron Corporal with TSC body.
Some claim the clean-black was a short run error that was quickly corrected but its existence caused a demand that made you consider turning it into an official running change at some point.
So, have any of these been released or are they going to be released this year, and can you settle for us whether or not the mysterious clean-black was ever released at the retail level or did all of the existing specimens come directly from Hasbro sources?
ANSWER: There are five types of Sandtroopers total. The final (fifth) will be the clean with black (unpainted) TSC body, and our response was indeed to correct the very short run of error figures by getting it into wider distribution. Look for them to be showing up within the next month or so. The other two will not be coming out.
That says to me, the clean with black should be coming out, but you can't find it anywhere. I've tried every online retailer I can think of and ebay, nothing. Do you think this figure is still coming out?
I stand by what I said. Hasbro has shipped pretty much every action figure assortment for Saga Legends that they've announced. There might be one revision that has not yet shown up, but Hasbro's solicitations (which you can see on fine online stores who sell by the case) show no Sandtroopers in the box. Unless Hasbro suddenly changes a figure in an existing mix-- which they have not done with the various Saga Legends variants so far-- it's entirely possible this figure will never actually show up. There's nowhere for it to go.
If I'm wrong, I'm wrong-- I'm aware of what Hasbro said but when it comes to variants, especially repaints as of late, what Hasbro has planned and what their factories actually do don't always mesh. I expected this figure to show up in the same cases as the super-articulated 501st Clone Troopers, and since they didn't, my hopes are pretty low.
9. I just found out my employer has started a recycling
program for employees to bring waste from home and
recycle. Can the plastic and cardboard packaging from
figures and vehicles be recycled? It seems like you
may have addressed this in the column before, and if
so, I'm sorry for the repeat. Like you, I think the
excess packaging could easily be reduced, and I hope
Hasbro and other manufacturers take that to heart to
keep costs down and help the environment.
I'm no expert on recycling-- all I know is that there's too much junk in a basic Star Wars figure card. As the items are not clearly labeled, I can't say for sure if they can be-- I'm fairly sure that the cardboard can be recycled in some capacity, but I have no idea when it comes to the plastic.
If nothing else, you may be able to reuse bits of the packaging. I actually used the bubbles off of Comic Packs to act as packing material in boxes I had to send out, and they did a fine job of keeping the items secure. While it's not the same as recycling it, finding additional uses for this stuff is a good start.
10. Why does Hasbro only produce deluxe figures wether Indiana Jones or Star Wars during movie years? With that said do you think we will be seeing Deluxe Clone Wars figures this year or deluxe Joes next year? On a side note the Deluxe German Soldier 2 pack from the Indy line is fantastic. Two mostly SA army builders for $10.
I'd say it has to do with a better understanding of the marketplace. Generic "Nazi" or "Commie" figures are a pretty tough sell at $8 a pop, but two for $10 sounds reasonable and probably one of the only ways you can move product.
Meanwhile, in G.I. Joe and Star Wars, army builders sell and sell well. For Indy, if they do well, I'm sure we'll never see a deal like this again. At this time there are no known plans for deluxe figures in the other ranges, and my guess is that since Hasbro has proven they can get $10 out of us for a single figure, we probably won't see them any time soon. Outside a store exclusive, maybe, kinda like the Order 66 packs.
I've got a lot planned over the next week, so if you want to see a column next Monday, I suggest you send in any questions you've been holding back immediately. Otherwise, I get a week off, and you wouldn't want that would you?
Got questions? I bet you do. Email me with "Q&A" somewhere in the subject line and hopefully I'll get to yours in the next column!
Click here to read the previous installment of Galactic Hunter Q&A!