Posted by Curto on December 8, 2006 at 03:34 PM CST
Since I was late sending in last week's questions due to the Saga Legends announcement, we won't have any questions answered this week. But I don't want to leave you all hanging, so I've collected some questions from the forums the past week that I thought would make for good substitutes.

From the Forums: How were the final 28 figures in the Saga Legends line chosen? What was the reasoning behind the choices?

Curto: As with any Star Wars line, the ideal lineup that Hasbro and Lucasfilm want is a mix of kid-friendly figures and collector-friendly figures. There needs to be a balance between main & obscure characters, droids, and army builders that satisfies both audiences. Kids want the main characters, collectors want the obscure characters. Both kids & collectors often army-build, so a number of trooper figures need to be added. Everyone wants pilots for their ships.

Some of the figures from the first two waves are characters that are targeted towards kids, who will instantly recognize them: Darth Vader, Yoda, R2-D2, General Grievous, C-3PO, Boba Fett, Chewbacca, & Princess Leia. Once you get the kids hooked, they'll look for more.

Some of the figures are characters that were chosen because they make good pilot figures for the vehicles: Darth Maul, Obi-Wan Kenobi, Anakin Skywalker, & Saesee Tiin. This adds an extra play value to the line, because what fun is it to have a ship with no one to fly it?

Some figures were chosen because they are army builder figures, appealing to a "dual audience" of both kids and collectors: Clone Trooper (AOTC), Clone Trooper (ROTS), Shocktrooper, Battle Droids 2-pack, Destroyer Droid, 501st Clone Trooper.

The rest were chosen by the fans, as a direct result of the tournament. All the figures from the Elite 8 (Sandtrooper, Pit Droids, Imperial Officers, Coruscant Clone Commander, Biker Scout, TC-14, R4-I9, and the #1 figure, Dark Trooper) were included, plus RA-7 and the AOTC Clone Trooper Officers.

Since the development time for Saga Legends was very short, it was important for Hasbro to get things moving quickly and they had to use the tooling that was not being used elsewhere. For example, the VOTC Stormtrooper was the #1 figure from Phase 1, but the tooling for that figure will be in use throughout the year in The 30th Anniversary Collection (for a removable helmet Stormtrooper in wave 3), so that figure was not eligible for the tournament.

So, as you can see, there really is something for everyone...

From the Forums: So if some of these figures were already chosen, did my vote really even matter?

Curto: It certainly did! While the first 2 waves were chosen before the tournament began, Hasbro wanted to let the fans have a say on what else would make up the line. The second two waves ("Fan's Choice") were based on the fan votes. However, the voting also influenced the first 2 waves a bit.

Boba Fett was originally going to be the TSC verison, but since the VOTC version ranked so high in Phase 1, it was changed. While "a" Sandtrooper was chosen, it was the fans who pushed the "super dirty" Evolutions figure all the way to the Final 4, so that's the version that will be included in wave 2, but marked as a "Fan's Choice" figure.

Also, the 501st Clone Trooper was originally going to be a repack of the Tactical Ops Trooper, but that will now be changed to the super-articulated body mold, mainly because I knew that fans would like to finally see that version.

From the Forums: Why the addition of the "Clone Trooper Officer"? If this was already planned, shouldn't they have been combined as one in the tournament?

Curto: The Clone Trooper Officers were NOT originally planned. They were added to the line VERY last minute because The Original Trilogy Collection category from Phase 1 (forum voting) was pretty much dominated by these clones. Although they were all eliminated during Phase 2 (the tournament), the message was received loud and want more AOTC Clone Troopers! But with only one slot available, the generic "Officer" title will be added to the card, and the ranks rotated throughout the run.

From the Forums: (Pick your favorite character) didn't make it to Phase 2/didn't win the tournament! He/She/It is a much better figure than (pick any figure from the list)! Does this mean I'm never going to get my favorite?

Curto: For the figures that didn't make the list (or the tournament for that matter), that doesn't neccessarily mean we won't see them again, since the Star Wars line will continue for many years....on a similar note, just because the figures ARE on the list, doesn't mean we won't see them "upgraded" at some point either...just not in this line. I can't really say any more... ;)

From the Forums: Do you know if this poll made Hasbro aware of the demand for older astromechs such as R2-B1 and R3-A2 redone with less horrid sculpts?

Curto: Yes it did. While there are NO plans yet, don't be surprised if you see one of these redone in, say, 2009 (since the 2008 line is already in development.) If nothing else, this tournament showed Hasbro which figures that fans prefer, which was really the whole point.

From the Forums: Thank you Hasbro for offering us the opportunity to vote for our favorite modern figures and for finalizing an exciting Saga Legends list for next year, it's always nice to feel involved. Any chance this will become a yearly thing seeing as though it looks to have gone down well?

Curto: While there are no definite plans for another round of fan voting, I'd love to do it again in 2007. However, I won't do another bracket-style tournament. While everyone behind-the-scenes loved the idea, it was a LOT of work for me, and fan response to this format was mixed. I'd also like to broaden the scope a bit next time, and get everyone involved, if possible.

Our regularly-scheduled Q&A session will return next week.

Got any burning Star Wars questions you need answered straight from the source? If so, post your questions in this thread in our forums, and with any luck, you'll get your answers next week!
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