Discussion in 'Transformers Toy Discussion' started by BigRC83, Dec 20, 2008.
Like how video games have an exact day they are released to the public?
Because it's impossible for them to logistically handle. They would have to ship figures off to all the retailers and have them all sit on them until the "launch date" until all the stores had them, or at least most. The retailers would never go along with that since they would just be sitting there taking up space.
Plus there are no laws/penalties in place for toy 'street dates' That is one of the main reasons why this doesnt happen. The reason why DVD's etc are nto put out early are due to the stiff fines stores recieve for doing this. Plus most toys are only identified by the 'line' of toys. For example all universe deluxe figures go by the same dpci/upc so it would be impossible to street date individual characters in that line.
There are no actual laws in place for that king of thing really. It's enforced through the penalties that you mention. If a retailer breaks street dates then the manufacturer will threaten to stop sending them products. The gaming industry can get away with this because the retailers would feel a lot more pain for loosing products from them. If Hasbro tried to do that I am pretty sure the retailers would just laugh at them and wish them good luck in trying to find other places to sell their toys.
The only real exception to the above being the movie line, which had its fair share of leaks before the street date, but was still mostly kept in store rooms or kept from being sold until the official unrolling day for the line.
Actually there are laws in place concerning movies/copyrights etc involving street dates - not sure about games but I know for sure there are for movies
It's not laws, it's contracts. There are no laws dictating that movie theaters have to wait till street dates etc. They sign contracts with the film studios that say they will. If they break the street date, then the studios can go after them for breaking the contract.
Not to be an ass but I don't agree with this, and the facts don't support it. If it was impossible it wouldn't happen with games, movies, music, shoes and countless other tangible items, but it does. What it really comes down to is supply/demand/profitability. The demand for a $10-$20 toy doesn't outweigh the difference in cost of the logistical effort for the profit margin compared to other items with street dates. Optimus Prime will never outsell Grand Theft Auto, The Dark Knight, Jay-Z, the iPhone, or a pair of Jordans. So why would they bother?
Also remember Takara has release dates in Japan! The Japanese consumer market is a completely different beast then in the states. Japanese consumers have been conditioned to "buy at launch" or miss out. In such a market street dates are almost required.
I have to agree. I think it's just a mishandling of the situation on Hasbro's part.
We were told Animated Blitzwing would arrive in November, and folks were finding him earlier than that. Others hadn't found him until the beginning of November, by that point he'd pretty much hit saturation.
We were told Animated Ultra Magnus (and wave 4's Deluxes) would be available in August (1st, I believe.) and it was close to September before they finally arrived, and not even at retail at that point. My order from BBTS shipped to me and I had the figures almost a month (maybe month and a half) before folks saw them in stores. Hell, outside of about five sightings nationwide (over several weeks), no one's seen Ultra Magnus. People still have to order him from BBTS and HTS if they want to get it before they're old and gray.
I could go on with examples...
Point is, they're not even close to when the figures are due in, it's almost like they spin a wheel, close their eyes, throw a dart and wherever it lands is the shipping date.
It also doesn't help that they allow the stores to overstock the figures like crazy.
Sure, it sucks to be left behind in Japan if you're not lucky enough to be in line in time to get what you want, but at least you've got an idea of when it's coming and when you need your dough. Here, it's a friggin' crapshoot.
I am pretty sure that video games and toy shipments use quite different distribution methods and distribution companies.
It is just the difference in the infrastructure of the two businesses.
Japan has a totally different distribution system. It's market is smaller than the US', and their toys aren't released in wave assortments like they are in Hasbro's markets.
Bandai releases model kits with specific days, but it's probably a different market altogether.
But then again, they release far more model kits than transformers per month.
You guys are showing a lack of knowledge as to how TOYS work.
The reason most movies, games, cds can easily be street dated is for numerous reasons.
The biggest reason being that they have a unique barcode !
Example: Widescreen Dark Knight has one item number, Full screen another, Blue ray another etc etc BUT every universe transformer in the deluxe size has the same exact number. It is an assortment. What you are talking about would require a lot of time, effort and cost. How ridiculous would it be if for example if every individual style of hotwheel car had a unique barcode. Logistical nightmare!! You would have multiple cases of just one type of car. Also, then stores would have to have individual labels for each variation otherwise you would have entire sections filled with just one type of car. It just would not work. Not from a logistic standpoint, not from a inventory standpoint, not from a sales standpoint. They are never going to cater to toy collectors, sorry that is not who they are in business for.
And thanks for correcting me I was not trying to say there was a specific law but there are copyright laws and contracts serve as legal documents so that is what I was trying to get at...
This really isn't a big issue at all. It is 2008, and claiming it to be a logistics nightmare is an over exaggeration!
1) They do it in Japan! You can argue that Japan is a much smaller market all you want, but it stands as absolute proof that it CAN be done at a reasonable cost. If the Japanese market was so small, why would they bother with localized exclusives? The very existence of such items proves the market is much more viable then some here would give it credit for.
2) There is a simple solution to adapting the current american toy "lot/wave/assortment style distribution" method to accommodate street dates. A box of the first lot for the wave must contain at least one of each new figure. So if your store gets 16 boxes of "wave 3 lot A" and you have 8 figures per box, and there are 3 new figures, that means you will have 16 of each new figure. Hardley a logistics nightmare.
3) "How ridiculous would it be if for example if every individual style of hotwheel car had a unique barcode. Logistical nightmare!!" That's pretty much it's done in Japan! I have a friend thats a TF importer. I've helped him unpack boxes fresh from Takara. Well to be even more accurate, fresh from the Chinese distributor that ships on Takara's behalf. So every new wave is just the new character released at that time. So the last box of Henkei's I helped him unpack were nothing but Ironhide and Galvatron in the box.
I wont argue that there isn't more cost in the logistics it takes to have street dates. In the end its the slightly increased cost of the logistics that stops them from doing this in the states, not the logistics.
Very true. But, Japan is nowhere near the size of the U.S.; they don't have thousands of Wal-marts, Targets, K-marts, TRUs, etc to get their product to on a specific day. They have a lot of retailers that carry their product, but nowhere near the amount that the U.s. does.
Plus, the Japanese toy market is different in the sense that the collector portion is more prominent than it is here. (Hence the lack of U.S. Masterpiece releases, aside from the three [2 1/2, really] in the past, and the death of the Alternator line.)
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