Posted by Mark on January 17, 2007 at 12:55 PM CST

Questions for January 17, 2007
Q&A Archive

I got a puppy and he ate 1/2 of my Darth Maul, (Naboo, unhooded, 3 3/4'') good young padawon. I want to replace it, is this going to be reissued so I can get it from a retailer, at retailer prices? What about the Saga Collection this spring?

I love the Clone Troopers, far more than Stormtroopers, but I am not satisfied with the molds they have made for the Unleashed 7'' line or the Battle Packs. The Shock Trooper was a great idea, but the lines on it are not precise enough, especially when you compare it to Yoda vs. Sidious Unleashed. Are there any plans for a Clone Trooper anything that will have good detail and be under $20? I prefer the ROTS to AOTC clone look. I think I remember something about a Clone Die cast version, if that is true anything else?

Where does a Shadow Trooper fall in the story line? Is he a book character? Comic? What are his responsibilities etc.? Looks like a good collectible, but background would help with my motivation to buy. -Ryan G.

Assuming the Maul you're asking about is the one that features break apart battle damage, it doesn't look like this figure is coming up anytime soon. There is a Maul figure set for the Saga Legends line, but it's the version that was originally included with the Episode I Sith Speeder. The only other hood-less Maul that's been available recently was the one that came in the Sith Lord Attack Battle Pack, if that's the one you're referring to, I still see this at Target from time to time.

For all intents and purposes it appears the 7" Unleashed line is dead in the water. Hasbro is dusting off a few of their old molds for exclusive repaints and re-releases, but nothing new has been mentioned and I don't expect we'll see a new Clone Trooper anytime soon. There is a Titanium Series Forged Figure 501st Clone Trooper planned, may in fact be out in some areas, but I can't speak to how precise it will be. It's basically a 3?" figure cast in die-cast metal, I guess it's something, but I wouldn't expect it to be all that impressive. It will blow you're $20 budget out of the water, but if you're really into Clone Troopers I'd suggest looking into the Kotobukiya line. Talk about detail and precision?

As far as I know the Shadow Trooper was pretty much made up by Hasbro as an 'interesting' exclusive repaint of one of their Clone Troopers. Its 'mission' or responsibility was quite simply to get shoppers into Target and encourage ancillary sales. There's a little more information about it in our Photo Archives, but for the most parts the details are made up, not from any 'official' story I've ever come across.

Hello I have a few questions...
1) Is there a chance that Hasbro or who-ever makes LEGO will make some articulated figures like in the LEGO videogames?
2) When is Toy Fair 07?
3) When will Hasbro release photos of the Dark Horse comic figure packs? -taylor

1) LEGO has and continues to include LEGO mini-figures with most of their Star Wars building sets. I wouldn't expect any other company to produce these figures, nor would I expect LEGO to make them in any other size/scale. If you like the LEGO figures, and would be interested in something with a little more detail and articulation, you should definitely look at the KUBRICK line from Japan. They are usually available at most toy importers, and on eBay.

2) The dates for Toy Fair are: Sunday, February 11th to Wednesday, February 14th.

3) I suppose Hasbro could release photos of the Dark Horse comic packs at any time, but I'm kinda thinking we won't see anything official until Toy Fair.

Regarding your response to Sergio in question mark #225-if weapons are only produced in figure molds then how did they produce all the extra weapons in the battle packs from Episode I and the ones that came with a figure sold at Target?

Good question, I'll run that one by Hasbro next chance I get, but I would think that in those cases they had tooling set up to run those specific pieces together. The question now becomes; is there enough demand for those same sets to justify running them again? Based on how poorly they did the first time around (the Episode I sets - and the Target sets for that matter?), I don't think Hasbro would be too anxious to put them back out there, nor could they justify cranking them out as a freebie.

Do you know if there will be any playsets in the 30th Anniversary series if so, what will it be and do you think they will bring some of the old playsets back? Like the Death Star or the Endor secret entrance? And will there be any new vehicles in the new line too? -SERGIO P.

Whenever Hasbro is asked about playsets they mention that the market just isn't right for that kind of toy, but that they will continue to evaluate the situation for the future. So there's hope, but nothing has been set in stone. If they were to offer a playset, the Endor Bunker is most likely the type of set they'd release; over and over again Hasbro has said they just can't justify doing anything large scale like the vintage Death Star. New vehicles on the other hand; word is Hasbro will release at least two 'new' vehicles this year - the V-Wing Fighter and Darth Maul's Sith Infiltrator. Both will retail for roughly $20, which means the Infiltrator won't be nearly as big as it should be, but at least it's something?

I was wondering if you have any insight into Target's overall strategy with Star Wars? It seems they have very little patience in selling through their exclusives.... the Rebel Snowspeeder was only on the shelf for a couple of weeks here in the Seattle area before it got marked down 50% just as the Christmas buying season started.

Conversely, they can't seem to keep any of the new figures or Titanium items on the shelf more than a few hours. When you take these two situations together, you get a lot of empty pegs or pegs full of Moff Jerjerrods.

I know from a friend on the east coast that his Target has tons of stuff waiting to go on discount. Why can't Target track initial sell-through numbers on a store basis (even a regional basis) and order new stock to fit in with actual sales figures? How hard is it to send the supply where the demand is? -Ben

Target's strategy with Star Wars is basically the same strategy they have for everything else they sell; get it in the store and sell it, if it doesn't sell by "X" drop the price until it does sell. It's almost a seasonal approach, particularly with exclusives, once the 'season' is over it's time for to clearance. Obviously there can be hiccups along the way; an item not getting put out in a timely manner, product held up at the distribution center, that kind of stuff. While your case is obviously different, I found the Snow Speeder in my area well before I ever heard of them going on clearance. It's just not an exact science.

When it comes to figures and other stuff it could be any number of things; poor or slow distribution, preset inventory levels failing to kick out requests for new assortments, disinterested buyers or department managers? the list can go on and on. Why this continues and we don't see a more real-time solution is that Target really doesn't care all that much about the situation. More or less, when it comes to stores like Target and Wal-Mart, the Star Wars line is really a very little fish in a big big pond. From what we've all seen over the last decade+, they simply don't care enough to manage the line at the store level in order to fix these uneven distribution quirks.

I've got a question regarding the 'other' SW projects, namely the Animated Series (or the continuation thereof). Do you know if the Animated Series is indeed being carried on, and if so, in what direction? Any chance they'd be reissuing the Animated Clone Wars figures (as repacks or retooling w/ better articulation and/or additional figures not made in the first go-round)? -Joshua L. (Brooklyn, NY)

Last I heard the animated series was moving forward; I haven't heard anything to the contrary yet. Other than that there really wasn't all that much information at the time. I did ask if it might have the look and feel of something like Avatar: The Last Airbender, but I think it was probably a little too early to tell at that point. I would not be surprised to see more on this at Celebration IV; a trailer or screen shots, but we'll just have to wait until then.

I was wondering if Hasbro plans to make any ROTS Padm? figures?

Two Padm? figures are coming up, but they are from AOTC and the Clone Wars Animated Series. So far nothing else has been mentioned or even hinted at from Revenge of the Sith. Given the characters minimal screen time, additional Padm? figures from Episode III will probably be few and far between.

I have a question about the ARC Clone Pilot transporting Captain Fordo and the Muunilinst 10 seen in the opening sequence of Clone Wars Volume 2. Could you please tell me what the Bat-like insignia on his helmet represents? Did he belong to a special Battalion of Clone Pilots, or was he officially part of the Muunilinst 10? Please forgive me if you've answered this question before, but I've scoured the web high and low and can't seem to find much info on this clone. Any light you could shed on this would really help. -Jason

The bat-like insignia seen on the pilot's helmet actually originated from an early Boba Fett concept sketch by Joe Johnston. You can find the sketch on page 145 of The Art of Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back Episode V (soft cover). As far as I know no other significance has been assigned to the logo so far, but it is cool to see that the crew at Cartoon Network really knew their stuff.

Now, if Hasbro could just crank out a decent clone pilot figure with that logo... That would be really cool!

I noticed that the hilt for the up coming Ceremony Luke is the hilt from Darth Vader. Now I know that the hilt in on the attached saber hand for the Ep. III Obi-Wan was made early on, but that should not be an excuse this time for this incorrect hilt. How come Hasbro has got this wrong a lot? i.e. X-wing Luke VTSC

Hopefully this is just a sample image using what was handy at the time and when the figure is released it will have the correct lightsaber. If not, I don't know what to think. It's not like Hasbro doesn't have the resources to get this right, it's not like we didn't point out the error on the vintage style Luke Pilot? If the figure does in fact ship with Vader's lightsaber hilt then I would guess that Hasbro and Lucasfilm must feel that this isn't a detail they need to pay much attention to. And if that the case, what's that all about? We'll see what shows up on the pegs.

Is the 30th Anniversary figures entirely repacks of older figures, but with coins included now? Or are these figures modified versions of earlier released figures, i.e. different heads, accessories, paint, etc.... in which case to me they are not really repacks since they are not identical to originally released figures. Do you know how many are new figures and how many are straight repacks? I just don't see the value in paying $7 a figure for the exact same figure I paid $5 or less for a few years back just so I can have a coin with it.... unless the figure is different too. -Rob

No, I wouldn't say the line will be made up entirely of repacked figures, but like any other line in recent years I'm sure Hasbro will take advantage of a repack here or there when they can. Right now it's hard to say exactly how many figures in the 30AC will be straight repacks or repaints, for certain the Saga Legends collection will be completely made up of repacks, but we'll just have to see about the main 3?" figure line as we go. As for how the coins relate to the suggested retail price; the coins are what they are, an added value bonus, not justifications for a price increase. With or without the coins, Hasbro has apparently come to the realization that a $7 SRP on basic figures is what the line needs in order to continue. This is not a case where Hasbro has included the coins and tacked on $2 to cover that cost. Whether or not we choose to support that increase or the figures included in the line is up to the individual collector.

Until next time...

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January 9, 2007  Question Mark #229