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Toy Prices

15 replies [Last post]
Wed, 2012-05-02 12:49

Just did a TRU run. Cap and Thor movie pegwarmers now $9.99. Marvel Universe and Star Wars figs $11.49. Marvel legends pegwarmers $22 and change. They can keep it all.

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JJJason's picture
Joined: 2012-01-04

I bought a WWE Defining Moments Undertaker at TRU a couple weeks ago and almost fell over when the total was, like, $32 and change.



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dr_Venom84's picture
Joined: 2012-05-02

I've noticed the same thing at my TRU. So I decided to drill the Store Manager with questions about this. The corporate people are doing a marketing study all across the country. I was told it would last 6 months. They want to see what the breaking point price-wise is for customers who buy the "hot" items. So that is why all the Hasbro stuff and Mattel stuff is jacked up. The Store Manager is actually against this marketing study and said they already had a dozen complaints. Hope this helps.

Joined: 2012-02-07

Great. The results of this case study will be either that the toys with the higher prices won't sell and won't get refreshed for 6 months, or that they will sell and we'll get higher prices in the long run.

When DC Universe started inching up to 15+ bucks a piece and then the YJ bigger figures came out at 20+ (but with a gigantic piece of plastic included) I knew things were getting bad. Older DCU figures that were at scalper prices suddenly seemed reasonable compared to the retail price of the new figures. Geez. Even transformers are slowly but surely inching up a few bucks at a time, though I still consider the well-made ones a good deal relative to the complexity and fun of the figures.

Emerje's picture
Joined: 2012-01-04

It's not just the retailers, manufacturers are steadily letting the prices climb. Deluxe Transformers had been $10 for some 10 years, then around the time of Animated they started going up, first $11, then $12, and for a short time $13, but now Hasbro is planning to jack the price up to $15 this August for both Generations and Prime. I imagine the TRU price will be around $18.


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Chris L's picture
Joined: 2012-02-07

It's across the board from what I can tell. All the Halo Mega Bloks stuff has been creeping up slowly but surely and less is coming with each set. I'd have to disagree on the "hot" items stuff as mega bloks True Heroes line is keeping pace with the Halo stuff.

Anonymous (not verified)

They can charge whatever they like. I never pay sticker price. I either wait for coupons and sales and stock up or find deals on-line.

Red5's picture
Joined: 2012-01-04

Anonymous wrote:
They can charge whatever they like. I never pay sticker price. I either wait for coupons and sales and stock up or find deals on-line.

I do that a lot too, but we wouldn't have to watch our purchases if prices were more reasonable.

I remember growing up that if you saw something you liked, you either bought it or decided against it. There wasn't the big clearance binge that there is now. There wasn't an online aftermarket, ebay, amazon or anything like that. It used to be that if you didn't get something when it came out, you most likely missed it or paid greatly later.

Now the opposite is true for MOST products. Certainly there are several exceptions, but most things tend to go down and some back up if demand catches them. What I have noticed recently is the increase in price of the aftermarket toys that weren't that desirable. One factor is that you cannot buy a cheap toy at the store anymore.

So, you can get an ebay lot of unopened toys for cheaper than you can get a few figures at the store. In the long run, big box retailers and manufactures are shooting themselves in the foot. Retailers because they are driving the market to the internet to price shop. Manufactures because they are pricing themselves out of the game by slowly creeping up on the price forcing most consumers to not delve too deeply into their product.



Angel (not verified)

We've got a lot of toy industry professionals on this board - does anyone know how much figures should actually cost these days? CDs cost like two pennies to press but we pay $10+.

How high has the actual production cost of action figures risen?

Star Wars/MU Size
7" Figures (NECA stuff)
12" Figures
Justice League Size

And just in general, does anyone know how much a Minimate costs to manufacture?


Anonymous (not verified)

With regard to Marvel product, I think the prices are Disney-related. The cost of figures in a Disney Store waswell over $12 about a year ago. If one store sees another getting top dollar then they will get greedy as well. With regrd to other vendors I have to think the demand has dropped off so much that they have to raise the prices to outrageous levels. If people continue to buy them at the inflated prices, then so much the bette for their bottom line. Our bootom line as consumers is that we get less for more $$$. If prices don't come down they will destroy the hobby.

Collecting Heroes's picture
Joined: 2012-02-15

Emerje is correct, it's the cost of the toys from the manufacturers that is going up. This is due to several factors. First being that toys are made out of plastic, that is made out of oil. Oil prices are really high, and so the cost to produce plastic is more expensive. Second is that most of the toys are made in China, and their quality of living is going up, as well as the working conditions in the factories. They are demanding higher wages, instead of the $1.50 a day or whatever they were being paid before. None of the stores can get the same toys for the same price we did a few years ago. Everything has gone up a dollar or two from the manufacturers per item. This doesn't sound like alot but if a store buys 1,000 action figures, than that is a extra 1,000 dollars in cost, or the equivilant of about 12 cases of toys that we don't get to buy. Add that with the cost of shipping going up due to increased gas prices and that is why all your favorite toys are going up around 2 bucks. Toys are simply costing the stores around $2 per item more than they did 4 years ago. If toys are more expensive to buy from the manufacturer, then the end price will be more expensive for the customer.


Matthew Brown

Nebraska's picture
Joined: 2012-01-03

G.I. JOE, Transformers, & Minimates used to be the best value for your dollar. Now JOES are $10 depending on where you shop. And the number of accessories has decreased. Deluxe Transformers are over $10 as well.

Minimates still seem like a bargain to me. The number of accessories seems to actually be increasing while the price stays the same. And I'd actually pay an extra $1 per pack if DST printed the tampos on every side of the figure. I'm looking @ you numerous Spider-men.

Joined: 2012-01-04

Gotta agree with Nebraska, Minimates are such a great product and value as long as DST keeps the QC in check. I have been collecting comic book based minimates since Series 1 and yeah...while I do have a Wolverine and Spider-man Army, I also have way more charactors than I could ever dream of getting with MU or Marvel Legends. And for the most part, you can pre-order complete sets with varaints from many online retailers and I have never recieved a cancellation notice because supply was limited. While their style is not for everyone, I am a Lego Fan and these fit right in. It drives me crazy to see garbage like Green Lantern and SW Fighter Pods clogging the pegs, when if placed in stores in the same aisle with Lego and Mega Bloks, I know these would sell well.

Oh yeah...this Wednesday is the 8 week mark since all local Orlando Targets recieved Marvel Legends...makes me worry about the Avengers Legends hitting Walmarts with more than 1 case per store. I was hoping to find those before the movie was released...I'm sure the demand won't go up after this weekend...

Joined: 2012-01-03

Just noticed this over the weekend. Hadn't been to TRU in 2 wks, and decided to see if the SW Vintage Dr. Evazan wave finally showed up (it hadn't). I did notice that between 2 TRUs that are only 8 miles apart, there was a $2 price difference on GI Joes ($9.99 in one and $11.99 in another) same Renegades assortment and everything. The same thing held true for Thor figures (apparently they were on the slow boat from China cause they had 9 fully packed pegs w/beaucoup Warriors 3 wave).


Mr. Tibbs

Joined: 2012-01-03

^^^The 6" Iron Man figures also returned in high numbers and the price increased to the $15 area from the $10 clearance price.

Gareee's picture
Joined: 2012-01-05

Pricing is funny.. Mattel did alternate character sets for the monster high dolls. The price on them wan't bad, $10 for a complete character makeover, BUT you need a donor doll body. Dolls are no less than $13 a pop.

The sets sold poorly pegwarming, so matel did a limited special edition release of one figure with a retail price of $4.18 at walmart. They flew out of the store in a day, with people snagging multiples of them, and the extra character sets moved as well.

So even though walmart gets a cut of the profit, a basic 12" doll can sell for $4?? That really makes you wonder about all the 6" $15 and up figures out there.

We've almost lost interest in figures anymore, because of the high prices they are charging its a rare figure thats worth $15 or more to us. Come to think of it, I can't even remember the last figure I bought over $15 at retail.

I think $10 was our "impulse buy" pricepoint, and anything else we look at and say, "it looks nice, but not $XX.XX nice", and pass on.

The only figures I think we've purchased this year so far are older stuff at bargain prices on ebay, and new Monster High dolls. sad. 8(


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