Are masterpiece size classes getting too expensive?

Discussion in 'Transformers Toy Discussion' started by primatives, Apr 26, 2020.

  1. primatives

    primatives Well-Known Member

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    Hey guys,

    Probably noticed that prices these masterpiece/3rd party transforners are getting more and more expensive.

    For me its gotten to a point where I have to choose characters I really want now to not even buying it. I use to buy it to complete the line but now the price doesnt justify the value I get from it.

    MP44 and MP Hound comes to mind and the 3rd party prices have seemed to climb as well. Also noted that price doesnt equal quality. Obviously we have to account for inflation but these prices have affected my purchase habits.

    Doesnt help that Im from Australia and we pay more when converting to AUD.

    What are your thoughts on prices? Does it have on an affected on your buying decisions such as myself?
     
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  2. Matty

    Matty @StayingInTheBox Veteran

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    Everyone has a breaking point in terms of value vs price paid. I know this thread will receive a wealth of replies as to why they think prices have increased, but the only truth is we don't know everything that goes into prices, just educated guesses. With that said, I stick to my personal value test of what I get out of the figures and it sounds like that's what you do too.

    To your question of Masterpiece specifically: prices haven't broken me yet and I feel they are more than worth it. I've certainly cut back on either items to afford the Masterpiece and third party supplements, though.
     
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  3. fschuler

    fschuler Post Count Inflated With Hot Air TFW2005 Supporter

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    If the designs and QC could keep pace with the price increases, I wouldn't be so concerned. But these days, I expect issues with every release...on top of new record-high prices.
     
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  4. mx-01 archon

    mx-01 archon Well-Known Member

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    Part of the problem is also the philosophy change up in Takara Tomy management that essentially changed the target audience of the Masterpiece line. We were all lured in by the original rather affordable prices, because at the time, Takara Tomy wasn't particularly confident in the line's performance potential, as Transformers is a rather 3rd tier franchise in Japan. So they set them up as "entry level" collector toys, essentially, with the aim to keep the prices as low as possible (they were so stingy with some of the initial range that characters had to have their accessories cut to fit into the budget, with those extras being released separately as campaign items. Things like Sideswipe's alternate piledrivers and Prowl's rocket launchers). But as they found their footing and their niche audience (aided by the strong nostalgia market reinvigorated by the live-action movies), they began to push more strongly into the "boutique toys" marketplace occupied by toylines like Soul of Chogokin, and with that, up went the price tags to match.

    So, like any good pusher, they got us hooked on the cheap shit, so they could get us drooling over the primo product.
     
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  5. lordcryotek

    lordcryotek Following proto

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    Yes. They've been too expensive since MP-36, on top of that QC issues have become the rule instead of the exception.
     
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  6. Reygn

    Reygn Banned

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    With Takara, yes, and thats soley based on if the figures were durable.
    When taking into account their quality, they have essential gone towards the far end of maximizing profit.
     
    Last edited: Aug 26, 2020
  7. motorthing

    motorthing One of these days.........

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    This is a personal choice for everyone, so I'm not saying anything that hasnt been said A LOT on this Board already but yes, price and quality have finally pushed me out of the MP Game.

    There are collectors that would have paid £1k for MP44 and they have their place in the ecosystem but that's no longer me. For me it just wasn't worth it. No matter how "nice" the product there's a cut off beyond which I won't go. He breached it and then some.

    I paid a proportionally high price for Hound - and it arrived broken in the box. I ended up selling the corpse for a loss so that a friend of mine could Frankenstein an "intact" version for his shelf. That also suffered cracks on the launcher arm and a self amputation on the calf panel.

    I can't afford to drop £100+ on a Carbot that's defective. I'm not a charity. So I'm done taking chances.

    Luckily for me there aren't that many more characters I really need anyway - Red Sunstreaker (if the QC is ok) and I can call it a wrap.

    But as with everything in life these days, mileage is going to vary wildly.
     
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  8. Knightdramon

    Knightdramon Hasbro LIES to the US

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    From MP 8 all the way to...around Shockwave/Hot Rod, I was in the whole way.

    The first...eh was around the time MP Inferno cost twice as much as MP Ironhide. Ditto with Sunstreaker and the other car bots.

    I did dip my toe in just a bit with MP Megatron. I liked him but sold mine and at that point wrapped up most of the MP collection.

    As others have mentioned, it's a personal choice. I am actually very fond of the more complex transformations to get toon-accurate bots out of figures.

    However, the current figures aren't meant to be enjoyed/played with as much as previous figure. Looking at paint chips/stressed plastic/broken figures lately, it's poor price to fun ratio for me. I broke my rules and got BW Megatron, only to find an overengineered transformation at parts and cracks in the crotch.

    I've found cheaper alternatives [some 3P, some Siege figures, other collectibles] that I am enjoying more than I used to enjoy these figures. Mildly tempted by MP Tigatron as a one-off, or two-off if they also make Airrazor, but not really going back to the MP line. Price is a major factor, but I've moved on collecting-wise. There's only so long you can keep interest in a line that's been going on for so long anyway.
     
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  9. Ratchet2007

    Ratchet2007 Well-Known Member

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    By mainly collecting MP/3P you find yourself buying less as the items usually have long periods of nothing coming out so you usually have more disposable income. The cost isn't really an issue (not for me anyway).
     
  10. Prescient

    Prescient Well-Known Member

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    When you can get the whole war for cybertron siege series collection for the price of a couple of masterpieces & 3rd party then yer, it's an expensive hobby. Same with the earthrise and studio series to masterpiece £$ ratio.

    MP has always been expensive compared to regular lines but the relative price ratio has increased. MP01was £100ish here and Armada Leader Prime was £30-£40. Now MP44 is £350 and Earthrise Leader Prime is £45. Similar increase in relative price ratios for the MP carbots to deluxe figures.

    If you enjoy and collect MP scale, you are now at the mercy of the increasing market pricing otherwise.... .

    Lets go with a popular bare bones masterpiece scaled set up comprising; MP44 Prime, MP36 Megatron, Fans Toys Phoenix, MP13 Soundwave, MP11 Starscream and 2-3 of the car bots. $1k/£1k outlay.

    Now, add in the rest of the official MP Decepticons & Autobots (assuming latest+ itteration) and thats another $£2k+

    Add in Fanstoys or Gigapower Dinobots and thats another $£700-800.

    DX9 Gabriel/FT Terminus $£200-350

    Zeta or other MP scale Combiners etc $£350-600 each.

    Single 3P Fans Toys et al MP figures £$60-200 each.
     
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  11. Lex79

    Lex79 Well-Known Member

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    Well, it's true that prices for MP figures have raised dramatically in the last years, and while I think part of the increase is justified because figures are now more complex, I still can't truly understand why Hound costs 50% more than Sunstreaker. Whoe I'm lucky enough to be able to afford expensive items like MP 44, I too am becomining more and more selective in my purchases. I might have bought an MP Trailbreaker for $100 despite not being fond of the character, but Takara might now ask $200 for him. I might be willing to splurge $400 for a super articulated Ultra Magnus since he is one of my favourites, but a similarly expensive Rodimus Prime would be an easy pass. In the past I bought figures out of curiosity if the price was convenient enough and I found some gems this way, it's a shame from now on it will be much more difficult to happen.
     
  12. Autobot X

    Autobot X Check out my sales thread!

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    Absolutely. Add to the fact that there are so many reported breakages and instances of paint scraping, and MPs just aren’t worth it.
     
  13. PurpleAndBlackSmokeStacks

    PurpleAndBlackSmokeStacks Well-Known Member

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    I juse know I recently got hooked on Gigapower's dinobots after exploring one of them as an option to complete my FT dinobots, as I needed/wanted a Sludge. A couple weeks later and I have spent darn near $1,000 on a set of Gigapower dinobots. This is the first time I have really felt the stress/anxiety around collecting the Masterpiece scale figure line (Takara and/or 3rd Party). It is also the first time I have felt like a real addict around this stuff.....got a taste of one and then needed more and more. All of sudden, I have 3 figures comin to me in the mail, a good chunk of money (much, much more than I had intended or wanted to spend right now) "invested" in dinosaur robot "toys", and not sure I even have the space for these guys right now. Add in feelings of guilt around spending this much right now and that feeling magnified each time a package arrives and I wipe it down/sanitize it, feeling guilty and embarrassed in front of my wife that I am wasting money and reasources on this stuff right now........it had been a stress relief and stressor during the stay-at-home order and school cancelations here in MA (I also have a 7 year-old son that I am home-schooling now because of the pandemic, while also trying to work from home during the week and having to go into my office for the day occasionally).

    Sorry for the rank.......I am darn stressed right now.
    Thanks.
     
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  14. Prime Noble

    Prime Noble Well-Known Member

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    I've always felt Masterpieces were overly expensive. The only ones I have are ko's. I got Shockwave and Grapple for €42 each and they're perfectly good quality. No way am I paying 3 times that or more for the official ones.

    Otherwise, I only have Rumble, Frenzy, Buzzsaw and Ravage. Ravage doesn't deserve the title Masterpiece either. G1 Ravage is sturdier and just as poseable.

    It's a shame Masterpieces are so expensive as I'd love to pick up Rodimus Prime, the newest Megatron, all the Seekers and BW Megatron. At least KO MP Starscream, Skywarp and Thundercracker are around the acceptable €50 mark.

    Mind you, with all the recent exclusives, a lot of deluxe and voyager toys have become quite expensive in their own right.
     
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  15. popcorn

    popcorn Well-Known Member

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    It certainly is. With the increased push for articulation, screen accuracy, fully painted and causing a more complex transformation I'm not surprised. On the other hand the overall build and plastic quality does seem to be decreasing for some(Hound comes to mind). Then we got the MP45 Bumblebee. IMO it doesn't justify the price at all. The ugly back pack has to be disassembled for a waist swivel and from every angle except the front it looks pretty bad. It even has back packs on the feet.
     
  16. Thundershot

    Thundershot Ratchet Fanatic

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    I dropped out not just because of price but because of this insistence on making them as toon accurate as possible. The prices creeping up didn’t help and MP-44 is when I hit the wall, because I love my MP-10 and saw no need to replace it when I didn’t care about Uber toon accurate to begin with.

    I’ll kindly wait for more Diaclone repaints. Give me Deepcover, Spin-Out, and a new character black Ironhide...

    Also waiting for a few BW characters. Especially Silverbolt to go with BA..
     
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  17. Sam

    Sam Arrival

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    The QC issues suck, for sure. I won't say that a $XXX figure shouldn't have QC issues, because the fact is that people in a developing country are getting shit pay to make these. It's a bummer when my MP-44 had paint scrapes after a few days, luckily I have the skills to repair that come warmer weather. Again, the idea of 'we shouldn't have to do that' would be nice in an ideal world. Shit happens, someone fucks up along the way, hard to know who to blame. Feels like "should" or "shouldn't" aren't the right words to be using.

    Aside from Hound, which just seems to be botched plastic, some of the QC issues that are arising these days are from the more complicated designs. I love the toon accuracy, I'm not someone who transforms my MPs too often, so right now the MP line is hitting all the right notes for me. The crazy articulation and variety of accessories are exactly what I want. I can forgive the complicated transformations required to get there.

    Gone are the days when I'd casually pick up a non-toon repaint, though. Ultimately the higher prices have lead me to keep the collection more streamlined, but the quality over quantity works well for me.

    While before I might've been in for a complete toon line-up (or at least S1), my priorities have shifted a little. I'm holding the collection to a higher standard now. Even though I love the character of Bluestreak, MP-18+ doesn't cut it for me because it falls down in toon-accuracy and articulation. I want the same levels as MP-44 and MP-36 for everyone. Am I holding the collection to a higher standard because of the high prices, or simply because I'm at a point where I don't want a large collection anyway? Maybe a bit of both, hard to tell at the moment.

    I can definitely see myself having a best-of MP collection in the future anyway. MP-36, MP-29, v3 Starscream and v2 Soundwave for the Decepticons. Maybe throw in Reflector if he ever gets made. For Autobots I'd be content with MP-44, MP-45, a reissue of Hound, maybe Sunstreaker when they make v2 Sideswipe, a v2 Ironhide perhaps. Definitely would be up for Jazz, probably Mirage too, Cliffjumper for sure. I'd say I'll pick up Arcee, though I might wait for in-hand QC reports first. Hard to say at this point if I'd want other S1 minibots, it's quite possible their prices would be a factor.

    I cut back and sold all the Beast Wars MPs. Despite Dinobot being one of the greatest toys I've ever owned, I didn't have the pull of nostalgia as I didn't watch the (great) show as a kid. I guess I can't see myself paying as much as is being asked for Tigatron anyway, kinda surprised that I did for BW Megatron.
     
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  18. stucksomewhere

    stucksomewhere Well-Known Member

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    At this point, I've given up on trying to complete an MP scale collection. I had intended to get every autobot from season 1 through to the end of Five Faces of Darkness in Season 3 as well as the crew of the Lost Light in MP. Now I'm limited to what goes on deep discount and shelling out a premium to finish my movie bots and LL bots.

    For movie bots, I have to get Perceptor (whenever one comes out unless I get a good deal on Tesla), Wreck-gar, Cyclonus, and Scourge. When I started my movie bots, I had guessed it would take ~ $1000 total. Now it looks like I'll be in for ~$600 just for the 4 I'm missing. It's just too much!
     
  19. Kakashi

    Kakashi Well-Known Member

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    It really sucks, because just as my income starts to allow for bigger purchases, the line shifts down a road I can't (or won't) follow. If the MP line had stayed with the pricepoint and style it had up through the 20's, I would be perfectly happy. But HasTak saw all of the lovelies monies people were willing to throw down on Third Party TFs that were ultra Sunbow fan wanky. So thats what they're doing now!

    If we didn't have the current level of talent on the WFC line, I would probably quit. I want a full collection of the ones I want by the time I am 40. I am ready to move on.
     
  20. heltskelt

    heltskelt Well-Known Member

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    Well, I was priced out of MPs starting with Inferno. He was released while I was saving up for a down payment for my
    current house. I haven’t been in the economic position to justify those purchases since.
    I want to eventually get Inferno, Grapple, and Megatron... maybe MP-44 too. Hopefully, Takara re-release Sunstreaker with a toy head. That will fit in the previous MPs more than the toon head.