Are 3rd party considered better than "official" transformers?

Discussion in 'Transformers 3rd Party Discussion' started by mouschi, Jan 27, 2020.

  1. mouschi

    mouschi Well-Known Member

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    EDIT: I have been told that 3P and KO are not the same thing. So I guess the question is: are 3P considered better than "official" ?

    I'll admit, I was never HUGELY into transformers as a kid. But when I decided to get some as an adult, I was STRICTLY only wanting original G1 ... perhaps officially licensed pieces.

    Then I saw the Gigapower Dinobots.

    Since, I'd gotten some other pieces like Zeta Dinokong, Jinbao Devastator, etc. and these are all simply phenomenal!

    What is the general consensus here? Are knock offs considered better? (I guess 3p is considered ko also, yes?) Would love to hear your thoughts!
     
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2020
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  2. Calabask

    Calabask Waspinator Cultist

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    We don't consider them knock offs. They're not. They're their own entity and most of them are better than what Hasbro puts out at all scales. Never heard anything about Willis or Gundog crumbling out of the package.
     
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  3. BIOMEC

    BIOMEC Terrorcon, aka "Ratchetman"

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    What?!?!?! 3P are NOT KOs... Those are original moulds... Third party transformers are better than anything from Hasbro, and they could be as good as the MP line bots from Takara.

    Some MP KO (4P) stuff are better than the official toys, for example: IT-01-EoD is better than MP-36.
     
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2020
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  4. IceBearPrime

    IceBearPrime Well-Known Member

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    Those are considered Third Party (3P) ... knockoffs are more so blatant mold uses.

    KOs are a mixed consensus I would imagine. Its what you want and why you want them. For me, Im not collecting for anything other than having/accumulation/display -- I dont care about resale.

    3Ps since they are their own thing, if it meets the niche you are interested in (ie a bot that isnt released or a version/scale/depiction) than people usually love em.. But quality does vary across lines
     
  5. mouschi

    mouschi Well-Known Member

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    Ok very interesting! So Zeta, Jinbao, Gigapower, Fanstoys are 3P and not KO? What would be considered a KO?
     
  6. IceBearPrime

    IceBearPrime Well-Known Member

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  7. Electro Rush

    Electro Rush Just a guy waiting for the perfect Whirl

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    KO's are stuff like what Wei Jiang and Black Mamba puts out. They are based on pre-existing molds, albiet in an altered form like oversizing them, adding diecast and improving the actual transformation.

    Third party encompasses all Transformers figures not made by Hasbro or Takara, some are licensed like Flames Toys and ThreeA while most are unlicensed (and thus why the term "third party" here is usually referring to the unlicensed variety). Fans Toys, MMC, Iron Factory, Make Toys, Gigapower, etc....

    You will also see the term "fourth party" which means ko's of third party products but that is a nonsense term as they are still third party products not made by Hasbro or Takara.

    As to whether they are better than official, well, thats up to the individual to decide. Right now I think I get the most bang for my buck by going official (chug to be specific). I still buy third party but since most of it caters to scales I no longer collect (mp and legends), my purchases have been few and far between as of late.
     
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  8. mikequillm

    mikequillm Well-Endowed Member

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    Everything depends on your budget and the quality of toys you want. You can get Kos of G1 toys and third-party toys. Some of those were made with cheaper plastic and some are actually better than the original
     
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  9. backhawkdown

    backhawkdown Well-Known Member

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    A KO is a reproduction, even of modified, if an existing product.

    3P is not a reproduction of any product, they are entirely new toys based on character designs owned by companies other than the manufacturer and produced without license.
     
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  10. Tonyshotz

    Tonyshotz TFW2005 Supporter

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    3rd party figs have a wide range of quality. Many are indeed better than official but not all.
     
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  11. backhawkdown

    backhawkdown Well-Known Member

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    Pretty much this. It’s actually a silly question to ask. Some 3P and KO’s are better than official, some are equal, and some are far worse.
     
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  12. DrCalligari

    DrCalligari Well-Known Member

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    That's kinda like asking if Chevy is better than Ford. It really depends on the specific make and model.
     
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  13. Max Tower

    Max Tower Well-Known Member

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    I prefer the DOTM KO Wreckers to the under decorated originals.
     
  14. MegaMoonMan

    MegaMoonMan OFFICIAL MMM REP

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    I can't think of any KOs (or 3P for that matter) I've gotten in the past five years that were worse than official.

    And no, regardless of what some will tell you, 3P are not KOs.
     
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  15. mikeszekely

    mikeszekely Not Pessimus Prime

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    As others have noted it varies on a case-by-case basis. It varies by company, or what exactly you mean by "official".

    Generally speaking, I think 3P Masterpiece-style stuff is improving in terms of design, engineering, materials, and QC, while Takara's engineering is getting sloppier and their QC has been going downhill. So yeah, I'm personally much more likely to buy a 3P figure in this case.

    It gets a little more complicated if you're talking about CHUG, though. On the one hand a 3P figure like MMC's Megatron is going to have better articulation and paint and less of the Hasbro hollows, but it's going to cost over $100. On the other hand, especially since they launched Siege, Hasbro is maintaining a scale, putting out some decent sculpts, and things like waist swivels and ankle tilts are finally standard, and they're kind of good enough for the price. Even if you wind up buying an add-on for a particular figure your total is still probably less than buying a 3P figure. Combined with the fact that I can buy them in local stores and they're practically an impulse buy. So for me, in the case of CHUG, 3P might be "better" but I rarely buy 3P CHUG stuff anymore.
     
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  16. zfarsh

    zfarsh Big Penguin Chief

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    YES

    3rd Party SUPERIOR = HASBLO / TAKACRAP INFERIOR
     
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  17. Snaku

    Snaku Well-Known Member

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    Since you mention Gigapower specifically and since it's the only area in which I have any expertise, I'll constrain my comments to masterpiece figures (well, I know legends figures too I guess).

    Takara tend to have more "play-friendly" engineering. You see things on 3p figures that Takara would never do because it makes the transformation less fun (not sure if that's their actual reasoning). Takara has a fairly consistent level of quality though it is marred by occasional scandals such as exploding joints in MP09 Rodimus for example. It seems you'll generally end up with a certain ratio of defects to figures. However, as their figures have gotten more complicated, that ratio seems to be going up, which makes sense since more parts means more opportunities to make mistakes.

    3P are kind of scattered since now we're dealing with several disparate companies rather than a single one. Fanstoys, for instance, rarely has issues with breakage (though those have been somewhat more common lately) but their engineering tends to be much less play friendly. X-Transbots used to have tons of issues with defects, though recently (the last two years or so) they have made great strides in improving. Their transformations have been fiddly with lots of areas where you need to actually flex the plastic to move parts past each other, though they've been improving on this as well. Badcube tends to have super finicky transformations with lots of tiny movements that many describe as "Holy shit! How the hell are you supposed to do this?! I'm never transforming this figure again!!"

    But there are a few areas where 3P just destroys hastak. First is price, since Takara has lost their mind and thinks that a $400 Optimus Prime and a $250 Megatron are in any way justifiable. Second and perhaps most important is after care - good luck getting parts to replace defects or breaks on an official figure, but most 3Ps, and Fanstoys and X-Transbots in particular, are downright amazing to the point that they open themselves up to abuse (board members have admitted at times to requesting replacements they don't need in order to get free parts). Usually, they'll replace parts for free (well, you pay $5 or so for shipping) even if you admit that you broke it yourself through no fault of theirs and a few people have even been able to buy parts for figures they don't own so they could use them to upgrade other figures.

    Another area where 3P may exceed official (depending on your opinion) is 3p do not have to rate their products for child safety. This means they're free to use design techniques that official cannot. This is a little more vague and I can't point to specific examples but it means that, for instance, a 3P would not have trouble with a figure like the original Fortress Maximus that couldn't be reissued due to his inability to pass the drop test (broke into dangerously sharp fragments). It also likely explains why 3p legends figures are so much better than official, though that also comes down to the fact that official legends mainline and need to conform to customer expectations of price for such small toys while 3P legends are geared exclusively toward collectors who are willing to pay a bit more for better quality.
     
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  18. Black Convoy

    Black Convoy Proudly Peruvian Transfan Moderator News Staff

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    I think this a great response to this question. Thanks.
     
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  19. Hawkwave

    Hawkwave Well-Known Member

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    I don't collect the mainline any more, but I have to agree with Siege and now Earthrise you are getting mostly supperb figures aimed at the G1 aesthetic. Now a $20 deluxe is never going to match an $80 3p or mp. But if a person only collected mainline I wouldn't blame them.

    3p Legends are what's booming atm and I think they are a happy medium if you want quality and are on a budget.

    20191222_193206.jpg
     
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  20. kibble

    kibble Seeker style, yo!

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    Considering all the issues with official MPs these days, the KOs are probably better right about now.
     
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