JelZe GoldRabbit wrote: Midnight_Fox wrote:
Mindmaster wrote:How come 3rd party companies do a ton better than Hasbro?
Because they're not limited to materials that have to stand up to the rigorous play that children put toys through, probably.
They're actually focused on the collectors
, not the kids and their parents
. As a consequence though, the prices are high thanks to material costs, Research & Development and production numbers (lower numbers mean higher prices), especially the last since we are so few in number compared to Hasbro's focus. Note that the third parties can't go and produce a lot for two reasons:
- The production costs would go through the roof, and at a certain threshold, they may even lose money per unit. It's a delicate balance between production costs, margin of profit and final cost to the consumer. Basic economics.
- They use the same facilities as some other, larger companies. As such, they have to carefully plan their turn when the larger companies have had theirs.
Midnight_Fox and JelZe GoldRabbit are on the money.
I think that if you set the original Energon/Super Link Bruticus Maximus beside the modified version that uses Munitioner and Explorer, and strictly compare them in that isolated situation of looking at the figures in a straight comparison, certainly the latter is the "better" combiner.
However, if you look at the original Energon/Super Link Bruticus Maximus design, consider that it's a toy created as a part of an extensive toyline. It has to adhere to certain guidelines for that toyline's products(ie. aethetics of the toyline, toy design consistency such as specific parts count for each size class, etc.).
Now look at the Munitioner and Explorer add-on sets and consider that they're basically standalone products with the sole purpose of enhancing the Bruticus Maximus combiner. There's more freedom for the Crossfire designers to work with and an entirely different set of considerations for their target customers(collectors who are primarily interested in display pieces as opposed to kids who are interested in toys to simply have fun with).
I like Bruticus Maximus(out of the 3 Energon/Super Link combiner sets, it's my favourite) and if I look at it in the context of being an Energon toy, it fits in with the rest of the toyline and though I'm not a fan of the energon hands and feet parts, they make sense due to the fiction established by the cartoon.
The reason why FP and any other 3rd party company out there can create great upgrades or figures of their own devising is because they aren't hindered by the need to create a product to fit into a larger product line.
I also think it's interesting that there's a grouping of "3rd party" companies together as if the majority of 3rd party products are "better" than what Hasbro and/or TakaraTomy produce. As far as I've seen, only Fansproject consistently produce products that are widely considered to be well designed and basically good products. No other 3rd party company has FP's performance record at this point. So to say "3rd party" companies produce "better" figures/toys than Hasbro is flawed statement. It's mainly FP that can be credited with most of the 3rd party products that people often praise. Many, if not most, other 3rd party products are mediocre at best, while a few seem to be good like the Gear of War accessories(though they're basically expensive weapon sets while most of FP's products are extensively engineered and functional accessories or figures).