DeltaForceChung wrote:What I sometimes have difficulty comprehending is how come the majority of what I stashed ends up being "sought after" by collectors after the fact?
Because you bought everything!!
DeltaForceChung wrote:I did a quick check on eBay and I find a good bulk of what I purchased in quantity is now slim pickings on eBay as a MIB/NRFB offering. Mostly bits and pieces and if a whole boxed figure is found, the price is substantial.
We've all seen 1:6 offerings throughout the years where no matter how long the time passes . . . it's still found and at reasonable prices more or less, but it just surprises me that some offerings within the last five years have significantly jumped in prices and scarce availability.
I realize the production numbers are nowhere near what they were in years past, but still.
I think this is key. And the reason for it is us, the consumer, and the manufacturers.
The consumer: I think we (by we, I don't mean anyone here specifically, but the 1/6 consumer in general) are part of the problem. I had posted a few years ago a thread about the "PO Today/Cancel in a Month" crowd over at the other site, and I fully believe you can blame a lot of the smaller runs on that blasé mentality, which really puts the screws to the retailer who has to purchase these things by the case.
In the past I had a several hour/2-day conversation with Steve at Timewalker, and in our discussions we talked about how he determines how much of a particular product to order, and he's pretty much got it down to a science where he won't order anymore than he absolutely has to. Now, with all the cancelations people tend to do willy-nilly, he probably factors that in, as well. I've seen items become "sold out" shortly after leaving the initial PO stage. (A good recent example is the World Box Plump Body. I purchased one through Timewalker, and it arrived what -- a month or two ago in the states; it's already sold out at most US retailers, and the eBay prices are already $20+ higher than retail).
If retailers are placing smaller and smaller orders, then obviously, the manufacturer is going to make less and less (it doesn't make sense to run 5000 of something if you only have 250 POs; maybe they only make 500). Hence the demand in very short order on the secondary market. Aside from Hot Toys, I think the days of these manufacturers running 20,000 of something has ended. And, honestly, I don't know how much longer even HT can maintain high numbers, as they price more and more people out of the hobby with their constant every-3-month price hikes, which brings me to:
The manufacturers: With prices constantly rising, how many of us can truly sustain this hobby over the long run. I just recently got back into this about 4-5 years ago after a 10 year hiatus, because I thought the prices back then were getting out of control ($50 for a freaking Hot Toy's Planet of the Apes figure? WTF!!!). Now look where we are... It's getting harder and harder to justify the price of these things, even to myself.
Then you have the smaller/newer companies that may only run 1000 or less (how many Lucifer Wings of the Fallen figures do you suppose actually are being made: 200? Less? Due to the pain-in-the-butt nature of using real turkey feathers. And how many (like me) took the chance on pre-ordering a brand new figure set from a company no one's ever heard of before?
Sadly, less product means scalpers are going to take advantage of the situation, and it seems the Asian market is the biggest supplier of bash fodder on eBay (makes me wonder how much insider info some of these people have as to production run numbers). Even here in the states I've seen sites that offer bash fodder as their primary bread and butter asking fairly high prices.