The "Gathering" WIP thread

Models and Toys Related to Five Star Stories

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elemental

Post by elemental » Thu Jan 27, 2005 10:31 am

happy hopping wrote:THe ability to get new kits is mutually exclusive to the availability of old kits. So what's the scoop on the "old kits" and the "warehouse business"?

We are beating around the bush here.
Only because Jinnai though you could find the list of volks' re-issues on their site yourself.

So take a look at volks website and you should have a pretty good idea of what is currently available, more or less.

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happy hopping
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Post by happy hopping » Sat Jan 29, 2005 12:40 am

I was more referring to AF, SSS when I said Older kits
If you buy a pet from pet stores , you are encouraging those breeders to breed more. This is the condition that they lives in:

http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=Iu_JqNdp2As

when you buy a pet:

http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=WCNr-VrkXl8

Adopt a pet

KOG
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Post by KOG » Sat Jan 29, 2005 5:52 am

happy hopping wrote:I was more referring to AF, SSS when I said Older kits
Somehow I seriously doubt the Volks warehouse is full of stacks of old AF and SSS kits.

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Post by Vincent Valentine » Mon Jan 31, 2005 1:07 am

Happy, your requests .. questions.. statements are rather unreasonable.

But hey.

My own take on this situation:

It's true that over the years that FSS GK have been gradually going up in price, but over the last few years, GK recasts have been really hitting an all time high. As someone said (KOG?) recasters are really taking advantage of the situation.

However, I must note that a change in the way that originals are priced would help the cause. Clearly, there is demand for FSS that exceeds that of the originals market. The existence of the recasts prove this. If recasts can come down by say, a 20% margin, the increase in the number of sales may be able to offset the recast's hold on the industry enough to make this a viable option. More units over more profit/ unit.

The problem is that FSS and other Japanese based models and hobbies are made exclusively for Japanese residents for many reasons. We simply are the 'not cared about' market. If we mattered ever so much, than FSS should have been brought to the USA etc when Diamond opened a FSS market for the English reading world. It is so much easier for a Westerner to find a FSS recast than a FSS original. I think that availibility is also a huge knife in the kidney here.

I remember when, not ere long, Volks released an English website. I uttered a silent cheer - until I visited the site, and there was not a TRACE of FSS.. all dollies. I ran a search for kits at the time, and it said "Sorry, not for international order" or some crap like that.

Frankly, this "you don't matter" or, less eloquantly put "f*** you!" approach to originals (partially because of Nagano?) really does much more harm than good to the industry.

I recognize, and even idolize a certain few sculptors in the FSS. I strongly feel that they deserve to be paid, and deserve to earn some kind of living off of their originals. But, speaking as a Canadian who comes from a country who places taxes on imported goods (amongst other reasons).. originals are out of the question.

Which is why I support Jinnai's venture on opening up the FSS market just that bit.. frankly, I agree that the earlier notion that the Red Phantom is a Bandai- like practice (boring rehash) but nonetheless, it's a rehash of a FSS sculpt done by a master. It's true that I would have preferred a more interesting design to order, too. But if this opens a way for me to get originals besides going through HLJ (of which I never have done, and never will do..) then I'm for it.

jinnai

Post by jinnai » Mon Jan 31, 2005 1:42 am

Well.. my real "gathering" progress begins right now!

Finally.. I've waited a looonng time for this..

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Post by KOG » Mon Jan 31, 2005 1:46 am

Vincent Valentine wrote:However, I must note that a change in the way that originals are priced would help the cause. Clearly, there is demand for FSS that exceeds that of the originals market. The existence of the recasts prove this.

I don't think I can really agree with this.

Recasts don't exist solely because originals aren't available. This may be the case for very old and out of production, or limited event kits. But it's not the case for current kits. And as we know, recast shops sell a lot more than just copies of old kits...

Besides, how many people out there are clamoring to get copies of old AF series and SSS kits? Not all that many.

Most people are out there buying recasts of current stuff.

So the idea that recats exist because originals are too hard to come by really doesn't hold a lot of water.

WSC kits in particular are regularly re-issued. Just look at HLJ. The majority of WSC kits are in stock, and have been sitting on stock shelves for months. Does this indicate that there are not enough originals to meet demand? No. Quite the opposite.

And then let's look at Volks. The re-issued Volks MM kits that HLJ stocked? Are they flying off shelves? No. How about the restocked SAV Prominence? Flying off shelves? No. And in Japan, are the Volks showcase stores well stocked, or are the shelves always empty? From what I've seen and heard, they keep the shelves stocked. Once again, this would seem to indicate that demand is not greatly exceeding supply. And of course, certain sources have indicated that Volks has large-ish quantities of some originals just sitting on wherehouse shelves...

Recasts are a great boon to those who would like to purchase the very old kits, or the very limited kits... but to say that people recast the new stuff because there's not enough copies to meet demand... seems greatly untrue to me.

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Post by Vincent Valentine » Mon Jan 31, 2005 4:17 am

You mistake my meaning there, KOG.

The supplies of GK are not flying off of the shelves because of their inaccessability to the general public. Or even someone who's a very hardcore modeler, such as myself. (I'm sure you'd agree with me here)

Why? Financially, the kits are out of range for many people. If I bought nothing else, assuming that I focused on FSS kits alone, and purchased no tools and supplies, then I would be able to buy one, maybe two kits a year. (Can you tell that I don't buy much?)

I spend much of my time and money on the process of modelling, rather than models to hoard like a Pokémon collector. Anyway, my financial situation supports this kind of.. how do you say, reigned buying habit.

The very fact that recasts are kicking the original FSS industry says one thing: People are willing to pay less for a product, even though quality suffers, and the prestige of the original (or even collectability) are lost.

If the price were to but drop, say by 20%, more of the recast market would gladly pay more to nab an excellent original.

Now I have no idea of what recent originals are like.. because my experience with originals have been less than stellar..

Let me clarify.

Say, 100 people in North America love FSS. But only 30 people can buy the MH Phantom when it comes out. The other people can not, financially, take the blow to their wallet. So they end up buying a recast, for 1/2 price.

But IF the price of the original were to drop by 20%, more recast buyers would be willing to cross into the original market due to the lowered price. Instead of 30 buyers, they now have, oh.. 40.

Seems like a bit of worldly logic to me.

Now, most of Volks originals have been consistent of late.. but look at their marketing strategy of these past few years.

1) Rehashes

2) BIG KITS

3) Clear resin kits

All of these criteria call for but one ultimate reality .. an unreasonable price.

If the FSS GK market were truly failing, then WHY make unmarketable products? Can I afford to buy a set of original Mighty Series? Who the hell can? KOG V3, a great kit by all means, is horribly expensive. LED after LED after LED? KOG after KOG after KOG? Is it REALLY a surprise that this trend MAY have ticked a few people off? How many people are TRULY going to buy a red Phantom in Japan?

It's really the attitude of the corperation, too. LED Napalm. Pfft. I'm quite certain that two, if not fewer people on this message board own an original of that kit. And even if I'm wrong, I'm sure that my point is now clear.

And here's the final rub:

We still don't count as the FSS market. All the studies, all the advertising ignores us completely. Out of HLJ, there is no retailer out there that carries FSS resins for overseas purchase.

elemental

Post by elemental » Mon Jan 31, 2005 10:33 am

Vincent Valentine wrote:We still don't count as the FSS market. All the studies, all the advertising ignores us completely. Out of HLJ, there is no retailer out there that carries FSS resins for overseas purchase.
Yet you know of HLJ and therefore there is nothing stopping you from purchasing originals.... except the price. Ultimately, we outside of Japan do count. Sales via HLJ (or Jinnai) support Volks directly, even if they don't directly target us as a market (be the reason Volks, Nagano, or an international copyright/licence issue).

Other than that, I can't deny that cheaper kits would encourage sales. Exactly how many people would choose original over recast is hard to tell...

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Post by Vincent Valentine » Tue Feb 01, 2005 1:56 am

Yet you know of HLJ and therefore there is nothing stopping you from purchasing originals.... except the price.
One could also argue that, if HLJ didn't ever exist.. or suddenly folded... "You can buy a plane ticket to Japan to support originals."

This is an unreasonable arguement in order to justify the fact that we are not the market being targeted. As I stated.. the advertising, the products, the exposure, and for the longest time - the manga, was never meant for us.

Take a look at the kits that we buy. "For Japanese use only." We don't matter, we never will. Imagine this. Your kit that you ordered from HLJ is missing a part, or a part is broken. I think that someone in Japan can walk easily into a Volks store, do some paperwork and get a replacement part. We, however, cannot. We're GAIJIN, and we don't matter. Like that 450 USD SR2 that we got from Yahoo Japan. The helm was badly casted, missing a section. We emailed the sculptor.. their response? 'We don't support foreigner.' or some sh** like that.

Now, if we all were to start buying originals, would it help Volks? I'm sure that it would. But this 'screw you' attitude definitely isn't helping, nor is their price.

Anyway, my beef with HLJ is not the price, it's their treatment of their customers. I refuse to be a number in an invoice book or a database program.

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Post by KOG » Tue Feb 01, 2005 3:35 am

I think you're getting a little carried away with the bitterness towards Volks, HLJ, and etc.

So what if FSS has never been aimed at our market?

Hasn't this been the case with almost ALL japanese entertainment until very recently?

Japanese movies, animation, books, models... very little of it is readily accessible, even today.

But when there's a will, there's a way. How does anyone get anything else? Hasegawa Macross kits? Anime DVDs not picked up for domestic distribution? Import video games? Anything? You find the available channels, and you pursue them. FSS kits are no different.

elemental

Post by elemental » Tue Feb 01, 2005 8:27 am

Vincent Valentine wrote:This is an unreasonable arguement in order to justify the fact that we are not the market being targeted. As I stated.. the advertising, the products, the exposure, and for the longest time - the manga, was never meant for us.
I really don't understand your point here, Vincent. Nor do I understand your problem with HLJ (and I am not in anyway implying your problem isn't valid or real :wink:). But the simple fact is... you have access to the original market, you can see the advertising material either in mags (which I don't buy, personally) or online. What more do you want? :?
Take a look at the kits that we buy. "For Japanese use only." We don't matter, we never will. Imagine this. Your kit that you ordered from HLJ is missing a part, or a part is broken. I think that someone in Japan can walk easily into a Volks store, do some paperwork and get a replacement part. We, however, cannot. We're GAIJIN, and we don't matter. Like that 450 USD SR2 that we got from Yahoo Japan. The helm was badly casted, missing a section. We emailed the sculptor.. their response? 'We don't support foreigner.' or some sh** like that.
I am sorry to hear you had problems with that FAC Junchoon. Treatment lke that is unprofessional.

But your point in relation to Volks originals is simply not valid. I can tell you that on three separate occasions I have had original kits missing parts or with incorrect parts (I guess I must have bad luck) and on all three occasions I had no trouble whatsoever getting replacements. And no, I did not need to fly to Japan or walk into a Volks store. Twice with HLJ and once with R10. The time with R10 was about 12 MONTHS AFTER I bought the kit, yet I still had no problems with them or with WSC (the manufacturer). Apart from a couple of minor HLJ shipping inconsistencies, I have not had any real problems with HLJ or R10.
Last edited by elemental on Tue Feb 01, 2005 12:50 pm, edited 1 time in total.

jinnai

Post by jinnai » Tue Feb 01, 2005 11:39 am

I'd rather just keep buying whereever I can get my hands on kits.. the cheaper, the better however. My wallet does scream at me sometimes..

In the meantime, I'm working on my gathering kit.

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KOG
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Post by KOG » Tue Feb 01, 2005 8:50 pm

Well crap. It looks like the border to the orange/white striped area on the legs is not a straight line. But instead, a jagged line.

Sucks for me!

For those who don't know what I'm talking about...

I have the G sys Jagd comic version recast. Which uses the legs from the Twin Tower kit as a base for recasting... and thus the legs are missing the leg stripes that the comic version is supposed to have. So I am faced with masking off and painting the stripes myself, with no guidelines to work with. And now that I see the masking job will be even more complicated... I just want to cry.

:cry:

junchoon
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Post by junchoon » Wed Feb 02, 2005 5:28 am

KOG wrote:Well crap. It looks like the border to the orange/white striped area on the legs is not a straight line. But instead, a jagged line.

Sucks for me!

For those who don't know what I'm talking about...

I have the G sys Jagd comic version recast. Which uses the legs from the Twin Tower kit as a base for recasting... and thus the legs are missing the leg stripes that the comic version is supposed to have. So I am faced with masking off and painting the stripes myself, with no guidelines to work with. And now that I see the masking job will be even more complicated... I just want to cry.

:cry:
nah, it's piece of cake for ya, rite, n.o.? :)

<run away quickly before KOG uses his blaster launcher>
wps

yp

Post by yp » Sat Feb 05, 2005 5:48 pm

Hi guys,

Here is my progress shot for the Gathering... It is a WSC Speed Mirage (Cloud Schatze type I), and it is a recast :) This kit is pretty much a fixed pose kit, so I don't have to worry about determining the pose for this one.

The pictured parts are cleaned up, washed, and ready for a prime coat, and you can see the buster launcher as well. Hopefully, I will have some painted pieces pretty soon.

Sheizzel, how is your Engage coming along?
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