The second phase of 3A Toys’ World War Robot franchise begins today, with the pre-order of the WWR EVOL Marquis de Plume. For the time-zone challenged, that takes place on Bambaland starting at 8PM EST today. The Marquis de Plume will cost $130 (includes shipping), and 3AA members will be able to pre-order an exclusive set with a Prey Box for $15 more. No official pics yet of the Prey Box, but 3A says it will be different from the one shipped as a bonus in 2013′s 3AA membership kit to folks who’ve been members since its inception.
3A will also have two Marquis de Plume t-shirts available. Price has not been revealed, but they’re typically priced like the ones you get at rock concerts – in other words, get ready to empty your wallets. As Eminem rapped – love is evil (spell it backwards). Profound.
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DC Collectibles has a pretty nifty giveaway going on. The prize pack includes some signed collectibles (including a 1:1 Power Battery, a Wonder Woman statue, and a Batman bust) and two action figures (Suicide Squad Harley Quinn and the 2013 SDCC exclusive Arkham City Hugo Strange).
They’re hosting this sweepstakes after hitting a big milestone – fifty thousand likes for the DC Collectibles Facebook page. And you don’t even have to like them on Facebook to enter the contest. Good luck!
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Toys R Us has their exclusive Marvel legends All New X-Men box set available for pre-order. The preliminary info we had (check out more pics of the Marvel Legends All New X-Men box set) had the set due to arrive at stores a the start of this month for $84.99. The pre-order page has it listed with an expected 3/19 ship date and an $89.99 price tag.
A delay in overseas shipping is pretty common, but the price increase is just Toys R Us looking to capitalize on the increased popularity of the current Legends line-up, which has had pretty good sell-through in their stores. I guess the silver lining here is that the Marvel Legends line is selling well.
There’s no substitute for seeing the figures in person, but Mattel has been kind enough to share the big reveals from its Collector Event this afternoon via the Mattycollector site. In previous teases leading up to Toy Fair, Mattel promised a subscription in the likes of Club Filmation in 2013 and a send-off for DC Universe Classics – and they did exactly that. Club Etheria is a six figure sub that apparently will have some day of sales. The previously revealed Madam Razz and Broom land in this sub, which also features Double Mischief, Entrapta, and the club exclusive Light Hope. An additional accessory was shown for one of the unrevealed figures – if you didn’t guess it, Mattel provided a spoiler in the image file name.
As for the DC Universe Classics send-off, Mattycollector will offer 6 figures, 3 each in September and October – with an enticing Collect & Connect if you get all six. It’s a Super Powers send-off, featuring Batman, Superman (in 2 flavors, one of them in the fan-demanded light blue), Wonder Woman, Green Lantern as the Riddler, and Mr. Mxyzptlk. The C&C is Kalibak, in his Super Powers brown colors. It really is a fitting finale for the line, which Mattel and the Four Horsemen have said had its roots in the classic Super Powers line.
Finally, Rio Blast was revealed as the September figure for Club Eternia. For fans of the Spirit of Hordak chase figure, Mattel will repeat that in 2014, with a Kowl and Loo-Kee 2-pack. And in a licensing move that feels odd to action figure collectors, Mattel is making Hot Wheels from Marvel Comics. And there’s much more – read on for the press release and pics.
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After a resurgence with their 25th Anniversary line, Hasbo’s G.I. JOE brand has taken a beating the past five years. This is thanks in a big way to lackluster performance of both G.I. JOE movies. Rise of Cobra in 2009 was considered enough of a dud (despite clearing over $300MM worldwide box office) to delay Retaliation to 2013, wreaking havoc in a line that was already heavily ordered at retail. Without the backing of the sequel at retail, the line sputtered and died – and even though Retaliation surpassed its predecessor, the damage was done.
This year, Hasbro has managed to extend the life of the brand by going the retailer exclusive route with Toys R Us. I’m glad to see the line continue, but it’s a tough road ahead. Retaliation did well enough to warrant another sequel from Paramount. And while a director and writer have been attached, no release date has been set – how long the JOE brand can maintain itself in absence of TV or movie support has yet to be seen.
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In the past, I’d referred to Hasbro’s Star Wars Black Series (the 6-inchers) as “Star Wars Legends” insofar as the brand’s first foray into the 6-inch scale has taken strong cues from the Marvel line in terms of its sculpt and articulation. But despite an assumed softness in the age-old 3.75-inch scale that I think prompted the new line, we shouldn’t forget that the brand is more like the Empire, able to take grab shelf space and subvert it to its will.
So while Marvel Legends relies on programs like Build-a-Figure to sweeten the deal for consumers and retailers, Star Wars needs no such enticements. The “big” reveal for this Toy Fair is the introduction of the Black Series Deluxe line extension, offering a vehicle for Hasbro to bring higher price point items into the retail mix. If this were Marvel, we’d have a Build-a-Jabba; the Star Wars brand allows for a shelf-grab for more of your collector dollars.
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This year I find myself in the rather odd position of reporting on Toy Fair without actually being there. A casualty of the winter storms Pax and Quintus, I’m warm on the west coast but missing the fun of seeing the figures up close and personal. It’s the first time being on the sidelines since I started covering Toy Fair back in the heyday of Toy Biz’s Marvel Legends run in 2005.
In many ways we’re seeing Hasbro’s (second) run of Marvel Legends entering similar territory. Back then, Toy Biz was making waves with the Marvel Legends Sentinel wave. And yet, macroeconomic factors were causing big changes in the industry, and the next year turned out to be Toy Biz’s swan song, with the announcement that they had licensed the Marvel toy lines to Hasbro. Those same factors – rising costs of raw materials and labor, consolidation of retailers - are still in play today for Hasbro. Rather than shutter the Legends line again, Hasbro’s Marvel team announced a shift in branding strategy at SDCC last year, and with their Toy Fair showing, we’re seeing how that plays out in the Marvel Legends line.
» There’s more… click to continue reading Toy Fair 2014: Hasbro Marvel Legends Report
The big show hasn’t officially started, but the toy companies are already ahead of the game. With a reveal in USA Today and an item in the full line-up of their Toy Fair press release, DC Collectibles announced they would be turning to one of the most beloved properties in the DC animated universe for a set of new toy lines. Bruce Timm’s Batman: The Animated Series and The New Batman Adventures will be the design source for 6-inch figures. While these will be in an animated style, it looks like DCC will be incorporating more than the 5 points of articulation you might expect.
Limited runs of animated figures are not unprecedented (DCC produced figures for 2007′s Superman / Doomsday animated movie), but with 6 seasons of shows and numerous animated movies, the Timm-verse could provide as deep a character set as DCC’s foray into Blackest Night, for example.
The rest of the Toy Fair line-up stays closer to DC Collectibles’ wheelhouse. There’s more New 52 and Designer Series (this time Greg Capullo) on the way, as well as lines tied to popular DC comic book events, like Infinite Crisis and Son of Batman.
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Singaporean toy company Play Imaginative threw their hat into the sixth scale ring with the release of the Super Alloy Batman figure in 2012, designed by Jim Lee and not quite New 52. Play Imaginative has continued the Super Alloy range, inspired by Japanese die-cast metal “Chogokin” toys. Iron Man seemed a natural fit and they’ve produced multiple Iron Man “marks” across three scales. DC fans (such as myself) can rejoice in the fact that Play Imaginative is also representin’ for the House of El.
This is a guest review by Jedd Jong. In the past, Jedd has provided great coverage of the Singapore Toy, Game & Comic Convention for AFP.
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The collaboration between 3A Toys and Marvel will see its first product, the 1/6 scale Invincible Iron Man, go up for pre-order in the evening on February 12 (at 8PM EST if they stick to the standard time) at Bambaland. Still no detail on price for either the four-pack or single figures. The Stark Industries Prototype colorway is 3AA exclusive on its own, but available to all in the four pack. And it looks like only the classic red and gold and the Silver Centurion colorways will make it to retailers down the line.
Seeing more of these pictures has me wondering how well the flexible “skin” over the arms and legs will look with the elbows and knees bent. For now, the best view is on the Stealth Iron Man – zoomed in I think you can see some folds. I suppose it’s a trade-off – it looks pretty sleek, but then again, a guy in an armored suit might be expected to have some visible joints.
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