Another new wave, another round of unscrupulous collectors swapping out new figures for old ones, or characters from an entirely different franchise. But wait? What’s this? It appears someone has gone after the new head sculpt and just avoided buying and returning the item with a swapped out figure. Well, this is a new low that hurts the collecting community even more. Whether it’s a body part or that blaster you lost, just taking it out of the package is wrong. This is stealing and it is just as bad if not worse than figure swapping.
Problem here, and I am assuming it is not obvious or why would any decent collector do this, is that the item will not sell. It will remain on the inventory and the store will not order more, so basically it will sit around for quite sometime ruining the chances of anyone else getting one. Wait, would an associate not notice this and send it back or write it off? Chances of this being noticed are probably higher than a swap out but chances of a store associate caring are just as low.
Unfortunately, the package style for 40th Anniversary characters, which while awesome, can be partially opened without separating the blister from the card via the taped on bottom which extends to the back. A further danger may be if people just swap out the red-boxed Princess Leia for the new 40th Anniversary Princess Leia or a orange-boxed Luke Skywalker X-Wing Fighter Pilot for the Celebration Luke X-Wing Pilot with a reworked paint application. Keep an eye on the tape on the back of the package and make sure it does not look reapplied or taped over. You can also check the up to date photo galleries on Rebelscum to assure you have the correct version of any character.
How can I as a collector help address this issue? Glad you asked. We have a few suggested actions to help combat this effort and assure that you get a fair chance to find quality items at your local store.
What to do if you find one of these items.
• Alert the store manager – by informing store management, they can discuss the problem with the customer service department and perhaps enact a policy to keep this from happening.
• Look for others – if there’s one figure like this, there’s a very good chance there are more. Do your best to find them all so no one else gets burned. Proceed to follow step one.
• Return the item – if you have already purchased the figure, return it and explain the situation to the customer service representative or the store manager.
Thanks for reading and keep the store reports coming.