Galactic Hunter.com's Star Wars Q&A with Adam Pawlus
September 22, 2008
1. Do you know if the Star Tours Droid Pack with R2-D2, C-3PO, WEG-1618, RX-24 ("Rex"), and DL-X2 ever materialized? I haven't been out to Disneyland or Disneyworld, and haven't been able to locate these on eBay.
Well Gabriel, I have good news and bad news.
The good news? You're a very capable collector, able to do research and look at the best places for this kind of information on your own. For this, I give you applause and a favor if I can fill one for you at some point. Seriously, I appreciate it when people look for answers in the places that can give them immediate feedback-- which isn't something this column can easily do.
The bad news? You're right. It's not out yet. Hopefully it will show up again soon, but for the time being it doesn't seem too likely to be on the way. As Hasbro tends to give absolutely no information out about the products it develops with Disney-- seriously, none of its Star Tours products for the first few waves (or any of them, if memory serves) appeared on their own web site as news items-- searching eBay is your best bet. Well, that and collector sites like this one. (Or, let's be honest, other ones.)
2. Short and sweet: Is the mail-away Captain Rex the same figure/packaging as the new figure hitting stores now?
No, but it fits under the "just different enough to make you mad" banner. The figure is from the same mold, but without the battle damage/dirt. The packaging is actually way better with the mail-in version, as it sports a rockin' fold-out diorama. It's so good I actually used a stupid slang word like "rockin'" to describe it-- that should tell you something. I'd suggest getting one just for that, but I've got a sack of UPCs and order forms and I'm not sending in for extras because, well, it's kinda bland overall. It seems a "clean" variant of Rex may be hitting retail stores as well, making the mail-in version merely a package variant and rendering the actual mail-in offer to be one of the more pointless in recent memory.
3. Is the clone trooper in Legacy wave 2 a member of the 501st and can therefore join Commanders Vill and Bow and 501st airborne trooper in my diarama?
In Legacy Wave 2, there's the Heavy Gunner and SCUBA troopers, neither of which are explicitly in the 501st. The Heavy Gunner is part of the Muunilinst 10, a group you absolutely should consider getting a diorama together for.
As the 501st did not yet exist at the time of this cartoon's creation, it's a crapshoot as to if they could eventually be retoconned into the 501st or Obi-Wan's 212th attack battalion. As far as I can tell, this is just a specialized group unto itself.
4. [In a previous] q and a someone asked a question about not being able to get the figures before retail. To avoid this have you ever hidden the figures around toys r us, walmart etc ? do you think its wrong because ive benefited many times?
I think it proves that you probably shouldn't be collecting unless you're doing this because you aren't old enough to have a job yet. If I can't afford something, I don't buy it. I actually cheap out on lots of things so I generally don't have to face the "lunch or toys?" question. Ideally, I'd say fans should avoid this kind of behavior simply because it screws up the store-- if a figure is "hidden," that means the store thinks it still has that item in inventory, and the automatic replenishment system won't tell the employees to order more or put more on the shelves. So basically, by doing this, you're throwing a wrench into the gears of that store, potentially preventing new shipments of product and causing other fans a lot of grief that could have been solved by your just putting it on layaway or simply charging it. Or, you know, doing without-- which is what I do when I can't justify buying something.
5. Whatever happened to the Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull 3 3/4" Lost Temple of Akator Playset? I can no longer find any listings of it anywhere on the internet and wonder if it was pulled from production. Did it ever come out and/or is it still on its way to stores?
I have two suggestions.
Unless Hasbro surprises us, it's due out around the DVD release-- Hasbro makes it a point to have a second big "push" for the home video market, as that's when the kids typically see the movie for themselves. I'd expect to see it around that time.
OK, so I got and played through The Force Unleashed. The good news is that (for me anyway) it was compelling enough to hold my attention to the end... unfortunately, as you may have guessed, the end came quite quickly. I played through it on the second level of difficulty and am wondering if I should have started with the third. But I don't want to spoil the story, so let's just talk toys and the game.
I'd really like to know when the toys were developed against when the in-game character models were finalized. Some of the figures, like Rahm Kota and Starkiller, don't seem to look too much like the actors in the game. The most interesting thing I thought, though, was with the Incinerator Troopers. The red Wal-Mart exclusive figures leaked ages ago and my first thought when seeing how the stripes were painted was that a pauldron was missing-- and in the game, sure enough, they have a pauldron. So basically the figures aren't entirely accurate, meaning Hasbro has an excuse to crank out more. Also, most of the troops have blasters that don't quite match the game, which is unfortunate but it does give another reason to rerelease them with more game-accurate paint.
It's packed with a lot of familiar places (and faces) so if Hasbro wanted to, the game could have been a great excuse to reissue older figures. It's really a shame most of the toys were sold to a market who hadn't had the chance to play the game yet-- odds are Hasbro could have sold a lot more stuff with the game out. With any luck, the game will do well enough to justify additional toys as there seems to be enough good stuff in here for at least a few more figures. (Well, maybe not a ton. But some.) If you haven't had the chance to try the game out, I'd suggest giving it a shot if you have the means.
...also, a number of you wrote in concerning your experiences with GameStop and the Stormtrooper Commander. Some recurring themes:
- Employees were not aware a promotion was taking place
- Employees said "I'll take one or two myself if we get any in"
- Stores were not given enough to go around
- Stores were not informed what to do with them (at least a few readers were simply given one without purchase
Odds are it was a successful promotion from where Hasbro and GameStop stand, but it's basically cemented where I won't be taking my game business from here on out. I know most people who write in to me only let me know about the bad experiences, so I can only assume some of you got the figure like you were supposed to without any trouble. Here's hoping for a Hasbro reissue down the raod, I suppose.
Oh, and my backlog is empty-- I've got one column in the can, and all the questions I've earmarked have either been answered or deleted. So if you've still got one, you know what to 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!