[CUSTOM] not-Hasbro

Posted by RedAleseides 
Sanjeev (Admin)
Yeahhhh...I've read a few things he's done since Dreamwave/IDW. Not as impressive. What's his beef with the fembots?
That IDW Arcee Spotlight book is tremendously bad.

-Ginrai
Golden Gate Riot on dead trees at: [www.destroyallcomics.com]
I've read some of the modern IDW stuff and hated all of it, but yeah, Spotlight: Arcee does stick out as being one of the worst things of all time that I have ever read. Just criminally bad.

Introducing Prometheus Rising Studio.
[prometheusrising.net]
I make 3D printed mecha action figures.
Sanjeev (Admin)
Good gods. Y'all have me curious as hell now! I'ma have to check this shit out!
To be honest, Furman's writing already showed problems way back in G1. Gritty, yet repetitive plots with certain elements that keep reoccuring ad infinitum. Plots that have trouble resolving ends at times. Not so apparent in the US G1 comics, until you read the UK issues and especially the US G2 comic. The G2 comic - basically a bad sci-fi plot that wasn't thought out well in advance and is very open-ended. His plots also tend to lack in interaction with the humans, something that can't be said about Budiansky's stories, which may have been corny at times but also showcased pretty well what human reaction to Transformers could be.

And Furman's writing got worse in time. His short stand-alone episodes in G1 are usually good, as were his early UK stories. It's like the more he got caught up in writing Transformers comics and the more the fandom clamored for him, the worse his writing became, perhaps because some fans will essentially claim eanything by Furman is good (even when it sucks bollocks).

--
SilhouetteFormula.Net
and then King Shithead of the fandom made this page

[tfwiki.net]

Jeremy tells me Furman mostly copied Chris Claremont anyways
Still, they are better written than the Bay movies...
Sanjeev (Admin)
What's wrong with tfwiki?

What's wrong with copying Claremont, while we're at it? I mean, if you're gonna copy someone...

What's a bollock?


So many questions...all I know for certain in this world is Furman superior; Bay inferior.
[www.tfw2005.com]

oh hi Trailbreaker
Sanjeev Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> What's wrong with tfwiki?
>
Dunno.

> What's wrong with copying Claremont, while we're
> at it? I mean, if you're gonna copy someone...
>
Dunno.

> What's a bollock?
>
Every male mammal has two of them.
>
> So many questions...all I know for certain in this
> world is Furman superior; Bay inferior.

Not difficult.

--
SilhouetteFormula.Net
I think the idea is that these so called Furmanisms are just copied from Claremont and that Furman is not the beautiful unique flower that some make him out to be.

Also can someone tell me what's up with IDW's art style

Like they used to do slight updates on old designs in their stupidly confusing Devastation, Infiltration, Fluoridation series.

Then they kinda rebooted with All Hail Megatron to 80's style designs.

And then they rebooted again where everyone was more like the live action movies. Poor Hot Rod got this nasty scowling robot face.

[www.tfw2005.com]

So now it's like, the ugly robot faces are gone but the general designs are sorta the same as the current version. Although Ratchet is more like his very first IDW appearance.

And yet Drift is still Drift.

I give up

guess what comic industry, at least those backwards japanese comics always start at volume 1!

sheesh
seriously that same Hot Rod used to look like this



and then he didn't
That's always been a big part of my complaint with IDW's stuff, aside from the general lack of storytelling competency, ability to plan and execute a narrative structure, or general ability to write interesting stories. There doesn't seem to be anyone over there in charge of keeping the artwork and designs in check with any semblance of internal consistency. Character models come and go without any explanation, and it became nearly impossible to tell what aspects of their comics were contiguous or separate. Fucking worst company.

Introducing Prometheus Rising Studio.
[prometheusrising.net]
I make 3D printed mecha action figures.
IDW swings with whats popular. The movies were the big draw. Make em all look like technic sets. Strangely enough, the EJ Su and Roche issues are the most popular art wise. You'd think IDW would get the hint.
[tfwiki.net]

No wonder they can't keep any consistency, with at least half a dozen to a dozen different (mini-)series running in one single year and no top-down guidelines whatsoever (apparently) except "do whatever you want"...

Sounds like a business model prone to catastrophic failure somewhere along the way...

--
SilhouetteFormula.Net
you'd think that but the fans have basically rallied around IDW on the basis of they're not associated with Pat Lee.

I mean the comic industry in general is now self-serving, insular, and unappealing to non-fans but the TF comics are a kind of microcosm for the whole decline.
VF5SS Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I mean the comic industry in general is now
> self-serving, insular, and unappealing to non-fans
> but the TF comics are a kind of microcosm for the
> whole decline.

Considering that probably about 90% of all comics published are dudes-in-tights comics, the industry has for a very long time been insular and unappealing to non-fans. Even sacrosanct stuff like Watchmen and Dark Knight Returns rely on a modicum of fanboy knowledge for their full effect. For every Persepolis or Maus or Fun Home, there are a ga-jillion unnecessary titles. You've either outgrown your fanboy phase or this contemporary niche of talking-robot stories doesn't speak to you.
but i don't wanna grow up

i'm a bob city comics kid
well there's always The Incredible Change-Bots

-Paul Segal

"Oh, the anger is never far, never far." -SteveH
that's a bit too meta
VF5SS Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> [www.tfw2005.com]
> -unlicensed-41/headrobots-project-updates-174085/
>
> oh hi Trailbreaker

'Bout time. I keep waiting for Hasbro to get with it and update him, but I guess it would confuse people since movie Ironhide is a black truck, too. Or something.

Also, I tried to read IDW Transformers and couldn't manage to care.
Heli88 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> > oh hi Trailbreaker
>
> 'Bout time. I keep waiting for Hasbro to get with
> it and update him, but I guess it would confuse
> people since movie Ironhide is a black truck, too.
> Or something.

According to someone in the know at TFW2005, Hasbro supposedly is planning its own Trailbreaker. But it probably won't be as Showy as the third-party one. I swear, we're living in a time when 3rd-party products have just about surpassed official ones.

These two figs ain't examples of surpassing, unfortunately:

[www.tfw2005.com]

I really want to love them, but it's hard to. The bodies are awkwardly shaped and they're missing their freaking guns, even if they do have the pile drivers.

They're blatant proof of half-assery, but hell, I'll probably buy a set.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/09/2012 05:23PM by gingaio.
Sanjeev (Admin)
You sure love those cassette bots, huh? Well, yeah, these renditions are pretty terrible.

Anyway, I agree that these 3rd party offerings are amazing. I just hope their QC and general materials continue to improve...and that they don't get sued into oblivion at some point, of course.
gingaio Wrote:
> I swear, we're living in a time when 3rd-party
> products have just about surpassed official ones.

Really, they're not just producing items with the same engineering ingenuity as Hasbro, at a higher price and with greater fragility? To me it seems totally uniform, like the third-partiers are reproducing Hasbro's style slavishly. Which is impressive, given that they don't have the advantage of Hasbro's economies of scale, but I wouldn't call it surpassing. Sure, their products look more like the old-school character designs, but that's just because they have the luxury of pandering to the fan community - Hasbro is trying to keep their lines alive in the mass market.

Personally, I've never really sympathized with the "make them just like G1, only with more articulation" view that's so prevalent in the TF fan community. I'd rather see new ideas, in engineering and in visual styling.
The Classics/Universe versions of the Autobot cars, for instance, don't really do anything for me. Universe Warpath, for instance, doesn't look anything like his cute li'l G1 self in vehicle mode - but he's so cool and well engineered that I even forgive him for having nothing in between his front treads (something I usually hate in Transformers tanks).

From my point of view, the third-partiers are doing exactly what Hasbro is, with a greater focus on the aesthetics of classic character designs. From the "just like G1" point of view, sure, the third-party products are hitting closer to the mark than Hasbro's - but I think that is the only criterion on which they're surpassing official TFs.

-Paul Segal

"Oh, the anger is never far, never far." -SteveH
I'm not against the geewun with more articulation idea. I mean that's what Masterpiece is maybe-sorta-depending-on-the-phases-of-the-moon supposed to be. It's not that different that successive iterations of Mazinger or the RX-78 Gundam with better toy technology.

What hamstrings Transformers is the lack of consistency in characters due to the disparate nature of many cartoon models vs. the toys they were based on. And then you have characters who were cartoon models first and then toys second or even a weird mishmash of early designs and finalized models like G1 Rodimus's toy.

So no being bound by laws apparently, these bootleggers are taking whatever philosophy they can run with and putting it to use in plastic. So we get the slavish geewun Minibots mixed in with Classics style reinterpretations like the City Commander and that shitty block Rodimus thing.

Obviously the more intricate ideas like MP Rodimus manage to capture the character so well while (attempting) to give that visceral Transformer feel to the henkei-ing.

Likewise the fake Springer put the same level of engineering to use in designing something that takes the basics of the character and brings it to life in what might be a legally acceptable product.

In the end it's all just what makes you a happy Decepticon... I mean entitled fanboy :3
asterphage Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Personally, I've never really sympathized with the
> "make them just like G1, only with more
> articulation" view that's so prevalent in the TF
> fan community.

There are these things called SOCs and Yamato valks and Robot Spirits that seem to be pretty popular...

> From my point of view, the third-partiers are
> doing exactly what Hasbro is, with a greater focus
> on the aesthetics of classic character designs.

Which is why they're doing a better job, given my tastes.

But if we're going to talk about the engineering and design, the recent MT (and iGear) minibots easily trump the ones that Hasbro/Takara's put out--more points of articulation, more complex transformations, better looking robot modes (and not just because of the G1 resemblance--better proportioned robot modes, I should say).

FP's Munitioner is better than most mass-produced deluxe-sized figures, as far as complexity, articulation, and sculpting (again, not simply because of the G1 resemblance). Ignoring iGear's bootleg seekers, we've yet to see a large sampling of bigger figs from these third-partiers released into the wild (Ironhide, Devastator), but I wouldn't be surprised if, in terms of detail/sculpt they turn out better, too. For one thing, these companies don't have to adhere to child safety laws...inevitably, that's going to help.

I mean, if you compare that new Skyfire to the Classics version, or the iGear Cosmos to the Henkei one, it's not just about G1 accuracy, but better robot-mode design.

That said, it's not that all 3rd-party stuff is godly or all HasTak stuff sucks, though I don't think I would ever claim that.

As far as fragility, the 3rd-party stuff I've kept around has been pretty solid. There have been crappy ones, but I've probably sold all of those.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/09/2012 09:06PM by gingaio.
Sanjeev Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> You sure love those cassette bots, huh? Well,
> yeah, these renditions are pretty terrible.
>
I just really like Frumble. It kills me nobody can seem to get them right. Crappy as it is, though, this Frumble pair has some pretty good articulation.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/09/2012 09:07PM by gingaio.
Sanjeev (Admin)
Yeah, I tend to agree mostly with what Andrew and Chieh wrote. Whatever makes you happy, right? At the end of the day, it's not really reasonable to expect Has/Tak/Tomy to bend over backwards for fanboys. It doesn't matter if we're the most publicly vocal elements of the industry--kids and parents are louder because they speak with dollars and yen. So a big corporation is going to do what makes sense and follow the money.

That said, despite being a vocal minority, (adult) fanboys DO have money...so in steps 3rd party players. And they seem to be filling that niche nicely.

gingaio Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I just really like Frumble.

What's funny is that I *love* the cassette men too. In fact, back in '98, when I first discovered this eBay thing, I started snatching up Soundwave's cassettes (overpriced and loose!) with my meager pizza joint money. Good times...

But like I said in Marvin's Omega Supreme thread, I never really felt like I needed another Frumble duo. I mean, the originals are about as nice as I could hope. Chrome weapons and even a little bit of diecast...I guess more articulation could be added, but I wouldn't want to compromise the size or the cassette mode appearance.

The various re-treads (both official and not), have always seemed really weak to me.

I wonder how that "Thugger" robot looks next to a G1 Frenzy or Rumble. Ben?
gingaio Wrote:
>
> But if we're going to talk about the engineering
> and design, the recent MT (and iGear) minibots
> easily trump the ones that Hasbro/Takara's put
> out--

I'm not sure which toys you're comparing these to, unless you mean some of the Legends-class figures in the Classics style? Based on size and price, I don't think they're really equivocal.

> FP's Munitioner is better than most mass-produced
> deluxe-sized figures, as far as complexity,
> articulation, and sculpting (again, not simply
> because of the G1 resemblance).

I really don't see the basis for the comparison you're making here. The detail's a little sharper, but there are plenty of recent deluxe TF releases that are just as well proportioned and visually striking. The articulation design is pretty much identical to any given Classics/Universe toy. As for complexity, well, it costs four times as much as a Deluxe, so.

> For one thing, these companies don't have to
> adhere to child safety laws...inevitably,
> that's going to help.

That, and they have no desire to sell large quantities of their products - not the quantities Hasbro wants, which necessitate putting out something marketable to to children as well as adult fans. Their fan market allows them to place toys at higher price points, with greater complexity for their size. I think almost every major qualitative difference between current Hasbro and third-party products is a result of the market they're seeking, not a result of a difference in skill between Hasbro's designers and third-party designers.

-Paul Segal

"Oh, the anger is never far, never far." -SteveH
asterphage Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I'm not sure which toys you're comparing these to,
> unless you mean some of the Legends-class figures
> in the Classics style? Based on size and price, I
> don't think they're really [equivalent].
>
The third-party minibots are the same size/weight as (and don't cost much more than) the Legends figs. I could care less about cost differences because my original point was about toys, not the market forces that shaped them. For the record, you can get a third-party minibot for about $17-18; Hasbro's minibots were selling for about $9-10, and more for the Henkei versions, which broke down to about $15 and up each with the exchange rate. So why is this an inappropriate comparison? If anything, I now feel cheated that I paid such prices for HasTak's craptastic minibots.
>
> I really don't see the basis for the comparison
> you're making here. The detail's a little sharper,
> but there are plenty of recent deluxe TF releases
> that are just as well proportioned and visually
> striking. The articulation design is pretty much
> identical to any given Classics/Universe toy. As
> for complexity, well, it costs four times as much
> as a Deluxe, so.
>
I mistyped/misremembered. Munitioner's Scout class, not Deluxe. I think my point holds. The Munitioner's a Scout-sized toy with a waist joint, mid-thigh swivels, double-jointed elbows, and a sharp-as-hell sculpt. Windcharger is arguably the best Scout-sized toy Hasbro's released to date, and in terms of articulation/sculpt alone, doesn't compare. I've had both, and the Munitioner "feels" like a more solid toy to boot--the parts snap together much more cleanly in alt mode, and the lines and detailing are just a lot sharper. There's definitely a noticeable difference in quality.


> > For one thing, these companies don't have to
> > adhere to child safety laws...inevitably,
> > that's going to help.
>
> That, and they have no desire to sell large
> quantities of their products - not the quantities
> Hasbro wants, which necessitate putting out
> something marketable to to children as well as
> adult fans. Their fan market allows them to place
> toys at higher price points, with greater
> complexity for their size. I think almost every
> major qualitative difference between current
> Hasbro and third-party products is a result of the
> market they're seeking, not a result of a
> difference in skill between Hasbro's designers and
> third-party designers.

The abilities of Hasbro's toy designers were never questioned or even brought up. My original comment was that in terms of quality, the third-party toys being produced are on the verge of surpassing the kid friendly stuff HasTak's churning out (if they haven't surpassed them already).

You said negatory to that, that all the products are of the same quality, etc.

Fair enough, but talking about market differences and pricing is tangential. My original point wasn't why the toys are subject to, as you've noted above, "qualitative differences," but simply that they are. To me, it's pretty astounding that you've got all these people without the backing of major companies churning out stuff that's just as good as, if not better than, the corporate competition. Good for them (and us).

If you still think it's all the same, then it's all good. At the risk of repeating the Reverend, enjoy what you enjoy.



Edited 4 time(s). Last edit at 01/10/2012 02:34AM by gingaio.
Since nobody asked for it, my opinion is that I've yet to see a 3rd party Frumbly pair that's enough better than the originals that I feel the need to own it. I do wish Hasbro had actually released the teeny tank versions that Takara put out as a now crazily overpriced two-pack, though. I probably would've bought them.

And I tend to like Hasbro's "re-imagined" G1 style; the characters are recognizably themselves, but with new looks. That said, I wish the new looks were more consistent. I find the initial Classics guys to look generally out of place alongside the more recent stuff; they're clunkier and more geewunny than the newer designs, which seem to include more random detailing and slimmer proportions.

As for the 3rd party guys, I am frequently impressed by the work they're able to do without the backing of a huge international toy company. I agree that most of the bonus coolness they're able to add is due to not giving a crap about child safety laws. (I'm still impressed by the pointiness of the FP Insecticons, which are some of the very few 3rd party things I've forked over the cash for.) And a smaller, more focused audience helps, too.

That said, for my purposes, HasTak does a fine job most of the time. At 12 bucks, I can overlook minor annoyances, and I don't need slavish geewun copies. I suspect I'll like their Trailbreaker just fine. And if I don't, then the guys from Headrobots apparently have me covered.
To be fair, FP's Munitioner is possibly the pinnacle of the 3rd party stuff I've had my hands on, and I've got a lot of them. He's by far (IMO) the best of what FP has put out - all you can want in a smallish TF toy and pretty much nothing you don't want. So, comparing the others to this gem is a bit tough, but in many respects I also find the 3rd party groups are putting out stuff that is certainly comparable to Hasbro's own toys, and certainly better at times.

I just received the iGear Rager/Spray combo yesterday and have been very happy so far with them, especially at $30 shipped for the two of them. I do wish their Ironhide/Ratchet figs were a bit cheaper, though. I guess they were scaled to be more like MP figures, though their appearance is far more "Classics." Kind of an odd combo there.

I wish we'd see more of Hasbro's reimagined G1 characters soon. It's time for the movie stuff to die off quietly again...

More serious than thou
I think you might be able to sneak the iGear Ironhide/Ratchet in with Classics; I think they're about the same height as that first Classics Optimus. Maybe with an action crouch, they'd look shorter enough.
[www.seibertron.com]

be an Optimist about this Negatron
Man, that Megatron looks nice.

Now for the other end of the spectrum:

[www.bigbadtoystore.com]
[www.bigbadtoystore.com]
[www.bigbadtoystore.com]

The Kranix sculpt actually looks okay to me, but unfortunately, it doesn't look like it'll transform.

Just placed an order for Impossible Toys's 3 Quintesson figures (Judge, Scientist, Prosecutor)--anyone who has these want to comment on them? I'm a bit wary and excited at the same time.
I got the Impossible Toys Animated humans figures for my daughter. They're... pretty lame, really. But she's six, so she likes 'em fine.

But I don't know if that reflects on quality overall.

I really want that Megatron (I mean Hegemon) to be cheap enough that I can buy him, because he is really, really nifty looking.
Sanjeev (Admin)
I got the Quintesson judge WAY the fuck back when they first came out (and people were shocked and appalled by a non-Has/Tak/Tomy Transformer toy). In fact, do a search...I'm sure you'll find pics of it.

I liked it (I think I ended up selling it later though). Didn't do shit other than have a nifty light-up base...but that's all it really needed to do...
Yeah, the Quints look really good and don't need to do much. It's puzzling how crappy IT's other stuff is. Still, I wouldn't have bought the Quints unless they were being clearanced. Hell, I'm even tempted to buy that Spike/Daniel exo-suit set (now $20, but didn't it sell for $60-70 when it first came out?). Still remember that joke you made about the transformation for those exo-suits.
Sanjeev (Admin)
Yeah, IT's stuff is all over the fucking map. It's kinda ridiculous that they even try to release some of the stuff they do. I really wonder how well their more...questionable...offerings sell.

gingaio Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Still remember that joke you made
> about the transformation for those exo-suits.

Heh...that was a rare divinely-inspired moment for me.

Or should I say Gcrush-inspired??
VF5SS Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> [www.seibertron.com]-
> images-of-3rd-party-megatron-with-size-comparisons
> /23638/
>
> be an Optimist about this Negatron

That looks really good. Too bad the size and colors means it's banned and will get confiscated in most of the world.

If they're smart they pack it in robot mode.

--
SilhouetteFormula.Net
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