2014 Japan-exclusive toys: Masterpiece, Generations, etc

Figures, collectables, customs and collecting.
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Ryan F
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Post by Ryan F » Mon Feb 10, 2014 8:36 pm

numbat wrote:Or shoes...
Or ice lollies...

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Clay
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Post by Clay » Tue Feb 25, 2014 10:26 pm

Interview with a Takara designer Shogo Hasui about Wheeljack

The summary:
- MP Wheeljack's colour scheme in vehicle mode is close to the real car, but he tried to make the robot mode's colours as close to the cartoon as possible.
- WJ's shoulder cannon can be attached to the car roof.
- WJ's Wings on the back do not require detaching when transforming.
- Thanks to Tomica (Tomy's Hot Wheels size, real vehicle base toy car series) it has become much easier to negotiate with car manufacturers. (I assume easier than when dealing with them as Takara, since Tomy has long-established connections thanks to Tomica)
- The sales of MP Lambor to Streak were excellent, and as a result, Smokescreen could have additional parts, and Wheeljack could be developed without considering re-purposing the mould.
- The first 3 real vehicle MPs were meant to be "Super Cars".
And from this post in the TFW thread, we know Takara Tomy have licenses for:
Bentley
BMW
Bugatti
Cadillac
Chevrolet
Daihatsu
DeTomaso
FIAT
Ford
Fuso
Jeep
Honda
Isuzu
Lamborghini
Lancia
Lexus
Lincoln
Lotus
Mazda
Mercedes-Benz
Mini
Mitsubishi
Mitsuoka
Nissan
Oldsmobile
Packard
Porsche
Renault
Subaru
Suzuki
Toyota
Volkswagen
Which certainly opens the field for speculation about future releases. :)

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Denyer
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Post by Denyer » Tue Feb 25, 2014 10:31 pm

Wait, Oldsmobile was actually a brand rather than a weak "teen" "rebel" phrase in equally dated TV shows?

They're still going to do Slicer irrespective of initial considerations, aren't they?

That's a decent list.

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Clay
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Post by Clay » Wed Feb 26, 2014 3:09 pm

Denyer wrote:
They're still going to do Slicer irrespective of initial considerations, aren't they?
Not sure, but I'd read it more as a choice that doesn't have obvious, strong selling repaint characters. Contrast with the Datsuns, G1 and G2 Sideswipe, Prime and Ultra Magnus, etc. Even the tapes, aside from Ravage, had dual uses on release.

And yes, Oldsmobile is real kind of car here. Are they not marketed at all in England?

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inflatable dalek
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Post by inflatable dalek » Wed Feb 26, 2014 3:45 pm

Nope, I always thought it was just a mildly sarcastic name a Yank teen would give to their dad's old man car.

I'd say Slicer is a cert for Ehobby.
TRANSFORMATION: ALL GOOD THINGS
END OF AN ERA IN MY LOOK AT AOE 5!
PLUS: BUY THE BOOKS!

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Clay
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Post by Clay » Fri Feb 28, 2014 3:05 pm


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inflatable dalek
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Post by inflatable dalek » Fri Feb 28, 2014 3:24 pm

TRANSFORMATION: ALL GOOD THINGS
END OF AN ERA IN MY LOOK AT AOE 5!
PLUS: BUY THE BOOKS!

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Osku
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Post by Osku » Fri Feb 28, 2014 3:31 pm

Masterpiece G2 Sideswipe tickles my curiosity. It wasn't that expensive either.
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Takara-Tomy-TRA ... 1044305310

Way out of touch with MP line (got one the early releases of Hasbro's OP and Skywarp). Something I should take into consideration?

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Notabot
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Post by Notabot » Fri Feb 28, 2014 4:23 pm

I used to drive an Oldsmobile in high school. It was similar to but not quite this. Ours was very shiny tan. We affectionately referred to is as "Das Erdboot" (The Landboat). It was a massive car. Over 18 feet long and about 6 feet wide. Hard to park, but had good power and was very comfortable. It was only slightly smaller than my friend's Mercury Marquis.

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Osku
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Post by Osku » Fri Feb 28, 2014 4:45 pm

Thanks. Sometimes I really, really wish I still had time to hang around here more. :)

--

Anything on topic I should know? Quality issues etc?

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Clay
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Post by Clay » Fri Feb 28, 2014 5:55 pm

Osku wrote:Thanks. Sometimes I really, really wish I still had time to hang around here more. :)

--

Anything on topic I should know? Quality issues etc?
Osku! You're alive!

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Denyer
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Post by Denyer » Fri Feb 28, 2014 6:36 pm

Hey dude.

Avoid MP Rodimus unless you're not bothered if one or both arms snap off at the shoulder, possibly whilst still in the packaging. Megatron has some rust issues. Soundwave/Grimlock/Prowl/Sideswipe are good stuff, and the Hasbro Soundwave comes with five cassettes.

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Osku
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Post by Osku » Fri Feb 28, 2014 7:12 pm

Clay wrote:Osku! You're alive!
Occasional lurker nowadays. Check your pm box, please. About Overlord. :)

--

Soundwave is definitely on perhaps list. Not sure if I can rationalize the import prices. I like the reisue Soundwave and cassettes, plus got the FOC version for Christmas.

Grimlock seemed expensive when I checked prices before year end.

Eh, Sideswipe seems like a good one to see if the line is to my taste. Couldn't resist the G2 symbol. :o

Bought one. Fingers crossed.

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numbat
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Post by numbat » Fri Feb 28, 2014 8:11 pm

I am so very excited by Bumblebee...

New sale thread added with a range of Transformers including Masterpiece, Botcon, CHUG, RID, Movies etc.

Looking for MP-11T Thundercracker and MP-9 Rodimus v2 (Takara version with as few QC issues as possible).


Check out my new sale thread now!

Also items on eBay.

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Knightdramon
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Post by Knightdramon » Sat Mar 01, 2014 6:27 pm

Looking forward to the Bumble MP.

It looks like there's too much "junk" on his back/side, but his feet appear normal so I still can't tell if he turns into a realistic or chibi vehicle mode.

Laughing hard at the "war" over at tfw2005 over a black silhouette.

Liking the fandom less and less with each new reveal, but loving the figures and comics still!
Few stuff in the UK to trade/sell. Measly sales thread.

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Clay
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Post by Clay » Tue Mar 04, 2014 8:08 pm

Here's an interview with Mr. Designer Man about the development of Wheeljack
Shogo Hasui on Masterpiece

- tell us about how you first came to know about Transformers.
H: As I grew up with Microman and Diaclone, I was rather put off initially when Transformers started in Japan. But thanks to the cartoon, my friends had started to be very enthusiastic about the series and that made me interested. I had Air Rider (Air Raid) and Brawl bought for me then, and they are my first Transformers. I must have been into military characters.
- What did you like about Transformers?
H: I have to credit solid characterizations. It was also appealing that both sides were cool. My friends and I used to get together bringing all our Transformers to play battle. It was very impressive to see (the toys) lined up. That impression is still with me, and when I developed Masterpiece I had in mind that the figures should be enjoyed lined up together.
- It was also fascinating that Destron/Decepticon looked tougher.
H: They were military weapons (while Cybertrons/Autobots were) civilian vehicles, so the difference in their firepowers was quite apparent. With that much disadvantage, Cybertron still won the battles with their wits and courage. I think the twist in the story was good.
- Wheeljack was an important character in Cybertron's resource department.
H: I believe Transformers always need Wheeljack and Satrscream. Wheeljack invents something, and Starscream betrays - without them the story doesn't go on, and I think it makes (the story) interesting.
- A character like Wheeljack doesn't usually become a marketable product.
H: He certainly is not a typical heroic character. Bow-legged, and compared to other good looking guys he is more like a middle-aged man. Though once his comrades are in danger, he never considers his own safety. I watched the cartoon again and noticed he rescues Bumble(bee) many times. He and Bumble are especially warm-hearted among Cybertrons.
- We get an impression Masterpiece Wheeljack became reality relatively early.
H: He was one of the candidates to be MP-20. But at the stage of collecting the resource for the real vehicles and considering transformation processes, Wheeljack's was quite complicated and I thought of putting him off. (*laughs)
- Is he that challenging?
H: The proportions of his robot mode are very different in the toy and the cartoon. His hips are buried underneath the body, and since his shoulder tires aren't drawn in the cartoon, I couldn't allocate the area around the rear tires to the arms. I had to find shoulder blocks and hip blocks from different areas. If I gave him actual hips, most of the car became the body and the legs, leaving no room for the head and the arms. Because of that, I nearly gave up. But once I came up with the idea of the storage space for the head, I thought I could do it. I crammed a lot in the head and hip structures and when you have the actual figure I am sure you will be surprised.
- Did you not make the ear parts clear or with light gimmick?
H: The (developer) team members couldn't reach agreement on that, but I was against the light up gimmick. If the gimmick is included it will lose the neck articulations, and it is hard to express the blue/silver colour change as well.
- Is the Magnet Cannon on the shoulder detachable?
H: It can be attached to the vehicle roof and hand-held weapons can be stored under the car. The wings on the back stay on during transformation. I wanted to keep the essence of G1 toy as much as possible.
- Any hardship to obtain vehicle licence?
H: Actually, thanks to Tomica brand, we can negotiate with many car manufacturers such as Fiat. This is a great result of merger (of Takara and Tomy). I had a Lancia Stratos Tomica when I was little. The style and colour scheme is very unique and hard to forget. It was my favourite but as I was young, I don't think I remembered the name.
- Any difficulties you came across while re-creating the body colours?
H: In the cartoon, he doesn't have the actual vehicle's colours on account of animation drawing. I thought over very hard if a Masterpiece should be true to the cartoon, or if it should be considered that the colours were simply omitted (in the cartoon) and make it true to the real car. Considering the fact that we actually obtained the licence, I reached the conclusion that the Alitalia colour scheme has to be re-created. Though I arranged the chest area a bit as the robot mode chest is very characteristic.
- Until Wheeljack, the characters were selected based on variations, but he appears to be a single use for now?
H: It was possible because the production number per figure is larger now compared to when Lambor was produced. Smokescreen could have new parts. The series is still new and we are still at the stage of going up one step at the time. If Wheeljack is successful, I believe we can choose from wider selection of characters in the future. In fact, when we started this "real car" series, we intended to make the first three to be something that would amaze even the "super car" fans. I wanted this series to be appealing to the fans of super car era.
- What about the future plans?
H: This is the third vehicle, so the next one might be more unique. Personally, I think there are certain pair or rival characters in Transformers. I hope such combinations (of figures) can be developed together. Also, I prefer Destrons and want more of them. If I have an opportunity to develop Masterpiece figures again, I hope to be working on a steady growing series and have more choices of characters such as combiners. I am looking forward to seeing the future development of the series, please lend us your support.

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Denyer
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Post by Denyer » Tue Mar 04, 2014 9:03 pm

Piqued my interest more for the figure turning up.

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Clay
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Post by Clay » Thu Mar 06, 2014 12:01 pm

Attachments
Masterpiece-Bumble_1394099491.jpg

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Unicron
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Post by Unicron » Thu Mar 06, 2014 1:51 pm

Aye, that's quite nicely done. I'm a little surprised by Spike but it makes sense, gotta have something extra in there to explain the cost.

Given that it's Bumblebee and Hasbro's been pimping him hard since the first live action movie, I wonder if he'll be relatively fast tracked for US release.

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Post by Cliffjumper » Thu Mar 06, 2014 3:36 pm

****ING YES. Back end of the Beetle's a bit messy but hopefully will be tightened up a little and less obvious in colour. And the idea of a free exosuited Spike (because I'd quite happily pay the same for a 65% size figure - it's about quality, not size, which is why a Voyager-class-sized SOC costs six times as much as some piece of shit Generations toy) fills me with joy for no identifiable reason.

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