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Toy R US Wave 10 revealed


lastweaponmaster
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I was enjoying not having to make the twice-weekly trips to TRU to hunt for Minimates. Ah, well...

You know, I've found that calling in with the item number at least helps me avoid having to drive down. It's gotten so most of the TRU employees recognize my voice and expect my Wednesday afternoon call... <_<

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is it me or is it odd that these showed up online first? maybe they have been listening to us and are trying to make every set availible online and in store, and the reason the exclusives arnt up is they are trying to save them from scalpers?

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is it me or is it odd that these showed up online first? maybe they have been listening to us and are trying to make every set availible online and in store, and the reason the exclusives arnt up is they are trying to save them from scalpers?

This seems like a pretty common pattern from the last few waves. TRU gets them into distribution warehouses to start going out to stores, and at the same time queues them up on the website. Seems like these are holding slots in their database or something, and will actually pop up as available to ship in a few weeks when they get to the website fulfillment center or whatever.

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So these are coming out already? Wow! My Toys R Us still hasn't even received Wave 9! This sucks. Can't wait for Omega Red. Yay but Nay. <_<

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I support the exclusives in principle, its just how TRU manages these things that irritate me. I've never understood how a national retail chain can fail to carry the same inventory in every location. I realize there's a limit to shelf space and some regions might cater more to one product than another, but the Sonic the Hedgehog action figures that ate away most of the dedicated Minimate space at my store aren't exactly flying off the shelf any faster than the clearance BSG sets. I mean if TRU is going to commit to supporting a brand, going so far as to sanction exclusive sets, you'd think they'd want them to be somewhat readily available to bring the customers in the store or to their website (which is 10 times the nightmare of going to their store). I realize that causing someone to wander into the store weekly in hopes of finding the one thing they're looking for might entice some to spend money on other crap while they're there to justify the trip, but with me, I toy shop on a budget, so if the Minimates aren't there, I go home empty handed. With gas prices rising, its getting harder to justify even driving there. Ordinarily that would just drive me to their website, but we've already established that trainwreck, where you find products that aren't even remotely close to the same product you're searching for, and if you do happen to find the one thing you're looking for, it sold out 7 seconds after they posted it, and half the folks who were lucky enough to get an order in will inevitably get the email saying they're out and they'll let you know when they have more. If you're lucky enough to hear back from them about more becoming available, its about 6 hours after they sold out again.

Still, I'm excited about getting yet more X-Men at 3-4 times the retail price on eBay. :biggrin:

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I support the exclusives in principle, its just how TRU manages these things that irritate me. I've never understood how a national retail chain can fail to carry the same inventory in every location. I realize there's a limit to shelf space and some regions might cater more to one product than another, but the Sonic the Hedgehog action figures that ate away most of the dedicated Minimate space at my store aren't exactly flying off the shelf any faster than the clearance BSG sets. I mean if TRU is going to commit to supporting a brand, going so far as to sanction exclusive sets, you'd think they'd want them to be somewhat readily available to bring the customers in the store or to their website (which is 10 times the nightmare of going to their store). I realize that causing someone to wander into the store weekly in hopes of finding the one thing they're looking for might entice some to spend money on other crap while they're there to justify the trip, but with me, I toy shop on a budget, so if the Minimates aren't there, I go home empty handed. With gas prices rising, its getting harder to justify even driving there. Ordinarily that would just drive me to their website, but we've already established that trainwreck, where you find products that aren't even remotely close to the same product you're searching for, and if you do happen to find the one thing you're looking for, it sold out 7 seconds after they posted it, and half the folks who were lucky enough to get an order in will inevitably get the email saying they're out and they'll let you know when they have more. If you're lucky enough to hear back from them about more becoming available, its about 6 hours after they sold out again.

Still, I'm excited about getting yet more X-Men at 3-4 times the retail price on eBay. :biggrin:

At the risk of being on the unpopular side of this argument-yet again- toy collectors are a tiny, tiny percentage of TRU's business. On top of that, Minimate collectors are a tiny, tiny percentage of that tiny, tiny percentage. Basically, if we were to all start shopping there en masse, they'd never notice, until they realize that they have all these Minimates sitting around and cancel their future orders.

I'm not saying that TRU's doing us a favor or anything by carrying Minimates, but we need them a lot more then they need us.

The real problem isn't That TRU is carrying exclusives, it's that they're shortpacked. And I don't know if that's TRU's decision or DST's, but I do know that Chuck has stated in the past that he likes variants and chase figures because it helps to give a toy line momentum. So I think it's safe to say that the case ratios are at least partially on DST's head; certainly, the fact that they are also shipping packs to comic book stores that are also being carried by a major retailer in large quantities has caused many LCBS to stop ordering Minimates because they aren't selling through (like mine!). And that's all on DST.

Toys R Us isn't perfect, but they are better then the alternatives, namely Wal-Mart and Target. Compared to buying exclusive JLU figures at Target, Minimate shopping at TRU is a dream.

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The real problem isn't That TRU is carrying exclusives, it's that they're shortpacked.

Actually, I think it kind of is that they're exclusives. It's not that they're that shortpacked any more; a 2:3 ratio of the chases vs commons is a damn sight better than the 1:4 we used to get. However, scalpers being what they are, those little silver stickers guarantee that the exclusives are going to get snapped up by Joe 9 A.M. At The Door knowing he can probably sell anything that says exclusive on it for a bit of a premium on the secondary market.

Even discounting the scalper effect, the average TRU gets one, maybe two cases in at a time. The fact that TRU even carries Minimates would suggest there's a critical mass of collectors in any given market. Even just two interested collectors in a market are gunning for, at best, one set of each to open and one to keep in box. A lot of guys on this board help out others, which means they're hoping to get to the store with two cases first and, through no ill will to other collectors in the area, clean them out.

I'll admit, I've felt plenty guilty about walking out of the store with all eight sets of exclusives from a couple of cases that were just put out. I'm not scalping, I'm sending them to board members, but I'm still screwing over someone else in my town who might have wanted them. And I know when I find a new case on the pegs with no exclusives, someone just did the same to me.

Anyway, the situation frustrates me, too, but I stand by my feeling that the exclusives existing and having a chance to get them is better than those characters never getting made at all.

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Lobsterman, great point, however I believe pack-outs are now 2:2:4:4.

I can understand (but not agree with) DST's thinking that you want to have more packs of visible characters out on the shelves, but this doesn't translate well to on-line. I wish there'd be even pack-outs designed for TRU.com-that would help. And if you look at the fact that the last two waves still have the heavily packed items on their site, I'd think TRU would be able to move more product that way also.

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The Magik/Warlock set seems to be settling in at around $12 per pack, so around $15-16 shipped. I thought wave 9 might be an exception to other waves after they went several weeks without going down much in price. But it isn't. I think this supports Hellpop's argument that the collector market for these exclusives isn't all that robust (i.e., supply is really meeting demand).

Still sucks that these are difficult for international members to get, and that it takes patience to get them for a decent price, but I see where DST/TRU are coming from.

Edited by karamazov80
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Just got a call from Toysrus.com that they would not be able to fill my order. When I asked why, I was informed that the items were never in stock and of course he couldn't explain to me why they would list an item they never had in stock on the web site to begin with.

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The main point I was trying to make (and I'm not sure I made very clearly) is that the biggest problem I see for Marvel Minimates right now is that there's an overabundance of certain packs in the market- like Modern Thor/Lady Loki and Silver Centurian Iron Man/ Stilt-Man- because they are being shipped 4 to a case to TRU and also shipped to comic book stores- what, 3 to a case? Is that the direct market pack ratio? Anyway, that puts an inordinate amount of one pack in an area (assuming that you have a TRU that carries Minimates, plus at least one comic book store ordering them). I can only go by my own observations, but my LCBS is not ordering Marvel waves anymore because they aren't selling through, and I know a big part of that is because the packs that are also at TRU (usually before Diamond ships them) aren't selling. And, because those packs are shipped in greater quantity to TRU, even if you have a collector buying one of each pack, you still have extra packs left behind, meaning you're basically creating pegwarmers in both your markets. I don't think DST is doing a very good job serving either market right now.

Realistically, the only way this could change is if the guys ordering Minimates through Diamond collectively tell DST they need to stop sending competing products in large quantities to Toys R Us (at a lower price point, I should add). Unfortunately, I think most retailers probably aren't even aware that it's going on, and are (like my guy) just seeing that Minimates aren't selling as well in their shop as they used to and cutting back their orders. Ultimately, I think we're going to see DST drop the Minimate waves to specialty shops and just stick to box sets, but that's just a hunch.

Anyway, I think this whole problem would be at least lessened if the case packouts to TRU were at least 3:3:3:3. You'd make it more likely to have enough of the TRU exclusives in stores, and also lessen the likelihood of one or two sets sitting around for ages.

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^Or TRU can get what they were getting in the beginning and have different mix ups of characters in the 2 packs and not the exact same packouts as the direct market.

I think that would be a much better solution. From what I've observed, the packs that pegwarm are ones that are readily available in LCSs. The FF wave seems to bear that out; they're all technically exclusives, and they're all pegwarming in equal proportions... <_<

I think a Big Time Spidey/Hand Ninja packout in TRU wave 10 would have killed.

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Well, DST seems to be adjusting slightly to help with the pegwarming. Not ratio-wise, but with the non-exclusive sticker "exclusive". I'm talking about the Dark Magneto/Brown Wolverine and Omega Red/Danger Room Wolverine 2 packs. And to a certain degree the Captain America/Battle Damaged Wolverine too. It's probably more a strategy to make the core buyers buy more. But yeah, I agree with the mix up of characters (BT Spidey/Hand Ninja) would also help.

Let's face it, we'll never see the 4:4:2:2 case with exclusives shortpacked go away anytime soon. Instead, I'd rather see this case:

mix up pack x4

non-exclusive exclusive x4

exclusive1 x2

exclusive2 x2

Now if only TRU could just order one less wave per year and let me rest from hunting for a little bit...

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Let's face it, we'll never see the 4:4:2:2 case with exclusives shortpacked go away anytime soon. Instead, I'd rather see this case:

mix up pack x4

non-exclusive exclusive x4

exclusive1 x2

exclusive2 x2

Now if only TRU could just order one less wave per year and let me rest from hunting for a little bit...

I'm confused. Isn't that how it's packed now?

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I'm pretty sure you're mixing up the exclusive non-exclusive with the non-exclusive exclusive. But it might help to distinguish the exclusive packaging variants from non-exclusive packaging variants. Also, don't forget to distinguish the tampo modified packaging variant pack (exclusive exclusive, exclusive non-exclusive, and non-exclusive non-exclusive varieties) from the non-tampo modified packaging variant, etc.

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It sure is good DST has customers like us that have went to business school, and are currently running companies making toys, to tell them how the should be running their company. You'd think they'd know how to run a successful business by now being a decade (?) into this thing and having put out over 38 series of the Marvel minimates alone.

I mean it really sucks big time that DST doesn't play this whole minimate thing out the way this fringe group wants them too instead of thinking about that pesky thing called profit.

Seriously, who caters to a corporate franchised store that makes up the majority of profits so they can slip specialty packs that the "True" fans love... Sellouts that's who!

You guys name one other major toy retailer that has put up a facebook page, that doesn't treat it like a form of advertisement. i.e. You can actually leave comments and they answer back, they show you early production photo's and even do giveaways for those pieces. If you can name another one, than cool there's more than one large toy company doing it, but I'll say this much, I doubt you'd see Matty Collector up on that list.

If DST did everything the way you wish they would, than you'd have no reason to be excited, or buy the next wave of toys they put out... It's not like these things are art pieces or limited collector pieces. They're toys, that we collect because we want a full team of the Comic book heroes we love so much. If they gave us the full X-Force set in the first series, and gave us a full set of The Avengers in the second series, than all those X-Force fans, or Avengers fans wouldn't stick around to see what's next.

The way they do things isn't a perfect formula, but when I read the crap some of you continuously spew, it reminds me of that famous Grandpa Simpson line "Bitch, Bitch, Bitch"

How bout we get back on point, When is Series 10 coming out?

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The way they do things isn't a perfect formula, but when I read the crap some of you continuously spew, it reminds me of that famous Grandpa Simpson line "Bitch, Bitch, Bitch"

So you're fighting fire with fire? :)

Seriously though, I don't see why you can't make your point without getting all confrontational.

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