Future of Takara Collector Lines (Encore, MP)

Discussion in 'Transformers Toy Discussion' started by Duximus Prime, Feb 5, 2010.

  1. Duximus Prime

    Duximus Prime Chronomancer

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    I don't know if this has been discussed here recently or not, but it has been something on my mind lately. The last of the planned releases for Masterpiece (comic-scheme Grimlock) and Encore (Big Mission 4, if you don't count Skids and Screech) have been released. In the past, we have usually been aware of the next figure in the pipe for these lines that would be released in the ensuing 6 months or so.

    To my knowledge, there have been no rumors of future releases for either of these lines. I know Masterpiece and Encore were never intended to be perpetual, but I sort of assumed that they would continue at least through the trilogy of Bayverse movies while the brand is so popular.

    Thoughts?
     
  2. wildfly

    wildfly Lasers, 8 O'Clock, Day 1.

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    It's been discussed plenty.


    It's a long time since we had six months notice of what Takara were doing next, in Masterpiece, or Encore.

    Hasbro are under pressure to turn out more Transformers than before, which in turn puts extra pressure on Takara's designers. On top of that, the two companies now share production resources.

    So resources, both production and design are directed more towards mainstream lines than Encore or Masterpiece.

    Whether you like the movie or not, if you're one of those people who's already decided the next main line will 'suck' although you haven't seen it, Encore and Masterpiece don't make the same sort of money as those that are supported by a cartoon or movie.

    Reissues are absolutely NOT over, nor is Masterpiece. You just have to wait.
     
  3. Liege Prime

    Liege Prime Well-Known Member

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    Takara is still making Alternity and they are also focusing on releasing Animated figures. I am sure there are other things in the works, and both Encore and MP will have more offerings eventually.
     
  4. Duximus Prime

    Duximus Prime Chronomancer

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    No need for a lecture. I think you just assumed that I was a close-minded "gee-wun-er" because I enjoy these lines. I never gave any connotation for or against the movie and/or main TF lines.

    I'm quite aware that MP and Encore cater to a niche market and that their priority is comparatively low to the other offerings from Hasbro and Takara. I simply wanted to have a discussion on the future of said lines as I have not heard anything official or otherwise for a while.
     
  5. GreenScream

    GreenScream Neo G1 Collector

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    Here are my thoughts:

    Encore:

    I think overall sales have been pretty disappointing for this line. Outside from Convoy, Megatron, Soundwave, Cassettes, you could say the line has been a failure in terms of sales.

    The big releases like Skylynx, Omega Supreme, etc. and the autobot cars have not sold well, as evident by them being heavily discounted. The last few releases have done better but I don't know if its because of lower quantity being produced or simply fan demand.

    I think the line is pretty much done. Transformers Collection(Bookstyle reissues) abruptly ended with the release of Blaster. I think that we'll see TakaraTomy start a new reissue line with Convoy, Megatron, and Soundwave spearheading its introduction. And the cycle will start all over again.

    Masterpiece:

    I don't think its surprising that the news has been lacking. The MP line usually produces a unique mold in a given year, the rest are filled with repaints.

    Supposedly, MP Ghost Starscream will be coming out this year. I strongly think that with this being 2010, we will for sure see Hot Rod, Rodimus Prime, or Galvatron release later this year.
     
  6. Duximus Prime

    Duximus Prime Chronomancer

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    That seems to be the consensus. Didn't Masterpiece black Convoy have Hot Rod/Rodimus on his wrist communicator? So far this has been a fairly reliable indicator of what the next release would be. That, and as you said, it being year 2010.

    I'd be surprised if it was actually Hot Rod and not Rodimus,as I think Takara is trying to stay aware from releasing characters that were close to their Binaltech counterpart (since Binaltech was essentially a "mini-Masterpiece" line), Grimlock notwithstanding as car != dinosaur.
     
  7. DeathStorm

    DeathStorm Snoochie Boochies

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  8. Duximus Prime

    Duximus Prime Chronomancer

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    Thanks, DeathStorm. That was my fault for being lazy and not doing a search beforehand.
     
  9. GreenScream

    GreenScream Neo G1 Collector

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    I think Hot Rod would be the exception since he is a futuristic car. The other Autobot cars were closely based on licensed vehicles. On the other hand they may stick to leader characters, which would make Rodimus Prime the likelier of the two to be made.

    I'd be happy either way.
     
  10. Shockscream

    Shockscream Chairman of Nerd Day

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    I hope that Encore isn't over as there are a few things that would be interesting to see re-released like that. It seems to me like a good way of discouraging people from buying KOs if there is an official reissue (obviously, there are times when we'd rather have an original G1 than an Encore or reissue, but you get the picture). As has been said, though, the sales haven't been all that fantastic. I think Bruticus didn't go down too well as a result of the numerous mould degradation problems -- I was lucky in that regard as mine looks pretty good.

    As for Masterpiece, I am not surprised that there hasn't been an announcement about a new mould for that line yet. New moulds seem to be released every two years or so with the rest of the line filled out with repaints. Think about it: There have only been four Masterpiece moulds since the line started and (I think) ten releases when you count the repaints. Grimlock was released early last year. I would be surprised if Takara doesn't cash in on the 2010 year with a Rodimus Prime or Galvatron release. And then there was the image of Rodimus on Black Optimus's communicator if we want to take that as a hint (based on the fact that Megatron and Grimlock appeared on the previous Optimus Prime release). As has been pointed out, the MP Ghost Starscream seems increasingly more likely so we shall at least get one Masterpiece this year.
     
  11. QmTablit

    QmTablit Disguise: Check. Robot...

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    Hasbro doesn't have the license for the name "Hot Rod" and his Japanese name was always Hot Rodimus anyway.

    Also, the car was always based on the Dome Zero, so there's little issue there. They even used the same car for the Classics mold despite initially wanting to use a more modern car.
     
  12. PoweredConvoy

    PoweredConvoy Randy of the Allspark

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    We've gone long periods of time before we know the next Masterpiece in the past.

    I expect a new mold for 2010 (probably in the fall/winter) and it will likely be something from 2010 line in Japan (the 1986 lineup here).

    Randy
     
  13. Rob Almighty

    Rob Almighty Kneel before Rob.

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    They can do the lame "Autobot Hot Rod" as per their usual trend of already-taken or too-generic words/terms (if they were to do Hot Rod and not Rodimus Prime).

    I'll be curious if HasTak go outside of G1 with their masterpiece line. Since there may be some licensing issues with certain characters' alt modes, maybe we can see some G2 characters or masterpiece combiners, or something from the Unicron trilogy as a masterpiece toy. There are enough fans of Beast Wars/Machines that would buy masterpieces of those characters in a heartbeat (imagine Optimus Primal with real fur).

    Some food for thought.
     
  14. Duximus Prime

    Duximus Prime Chronomancer

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    True enough, but I think the distinction being discussed is more of the aesthetic portrayal of the "Rodimus" character as the futuristic sports car versus the futuristic, Matrix-bearing Winnebago.
     
  15. Miggytron

    Miggytron Slag Sucking Saurian

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    Real fur?! I'm sorry but I cracked up reading that. Not only would the toy be silly with hair falling off everywhere but you'd have PETA nuts throwing paint on your action figures LOL
     
  16. Hound & Mirage

    Hound & Mirage Rapscallion

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    *still wanting an encore Blaster*
     
  17. Duximus Prime

    Duximus Prime Chronomancer

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    Reissued in the book-style TFC, good sir.
     
  18. Rob Almighty

    Rob Almighty Kneel before Rob.

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    not REAL fur, but some fake fur. (I meant real fur as opposed to plastic molded with wavy lines.)
     
  19. Hound & Mirage

    Hound & Mirage Rapscallion

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    Indeed. Still want an encore Blaster. Especially for a tampoed Autobot emblem on the door and maybe other painted markings.
     
  20. Shockscream

    Shockscream Chairman of Nerd Day

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    I'd be interested in Masterpiece combiners. They don't have to be enormous; MP Prime and MP Megatron height would be sufficient. Devastator and Menasor would be the top my list.

    As for going outside of G1 for characters, I can see it happening. They seem to be determined to update the more iconic characters. Optimus Primal and some of the other Beast Wars/Machines characters could definitely be thought of as iconic. Beast Wars Megatron would be nice to see in an updated Masterpiece style.

    As did I. It would be the most hilarious thing I have seen.
     

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