Dungeons & Dragons: We want more, Hasbro!

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Dungeons & Dragons: We want more, Hasbro!

Fri Aug 14, 2020 7:59 am

I remember that a topic like this was created a while ago but as several topics were lost recently I decided to redo it.

I believe that Hasbro is wasting a lot of time not launching a line of Dungeons & Dragons on the 6 inch scale. D&D has millions of fans around the world and has a vast number of characters, many extremely well-known for books and games like Drizzt Do'Urden, Elminster, Bruenor, etc.

Just look at the great success of the Mythic Legions line, which despite trying to form a base and history, does not compare with the amount of content in D&D. Most people like medieval fantasy themes and I believe that many would buy a Drizzt figure without a second thought.

So what's the use of so much potential if Hasbro is wasting so much time showing nothing. We should have a Skyrim and Witcher 3-style D&D game a year due to the immense amount of material available but I don't see Hasbro and Wizards enjoying even 50% of what D&D could offer.

Recently Funko made an exclusive 2-pack from Drizzt and Guenwnhyvar and sold very well. I also wrote on Salvatore's Twitter that the characters he created deserved a line of action figures and he liked the idea but I can't say for sure if he would be directly responsible or if he would really be interested in it.

It is just my opinion and I think they could profit a lot more and at the same time please the fans if they made a minimum of effort.

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Re: Dungeons & Dragons: What is Hasbro waiting for?

Fri Aug 14, 2020 11:01 am

It is odd that they haven't pushed harder for toys. I've seen box sets of die cast metal minis from Jada Toys, so it's out there in a sense.

A few years ago I'd have thought it wouldn't sell enough to justify, but with the resurgence in popularity for D&D and tabletop games in general, it seems to me like it would be a good bet.

Like you said, there are certainly more than enough characters to mine for a figure line, and I'd be in for many of them (they'd probably never make her, but I want Alias). They could also hit plenty of nostalgic folks with the cast from the cartoon. But even without that, generic characters with interesting designs (dragonborn warlock, dwarf paladin, whatever) would definitely have some appeal.

I have no answers, but maybe one day they'll do it.
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Re: Dungeons & Dragons: What is Hasbro waiting for?

Sat Aug 15, 2020 2:01 am

I've heard the communication and cooperation between Wizards of the Coast and Hasbro is awful.
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Re: Dungeons & Dragons: What is Hasbro waiting for?

Sun Aug 16, 2020 2:31 am

Totally agree Hasbro is crazy not to cash in on D&D 6” figures right now.

The genre is a proven seller and I’ll take figures from the 80s cartoon all day.

Plus wasn’t there a New D&D movie supposed to be coming out soon?

Maybe then.
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Re: Dungeons & Dragons: What is Hasbro waiting for?

Sun Aug 16, 2020 3:23 am

Even putting aside the named characters, I could see people going for orcs, goblins, bugbears, trolls, just all sorts of army building creatures.
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Re: Dungeons & Dragons: What is Hasbro waiting for?

Mon Aug 17, 2020 3:18 am

One of the things we saw with Funko's Magic line, and that we see to some extent with video game lines, is that gaming audiences are less willing to buy action figures than movie/TV ones. I think the reason is that these hobbies are already money-intensive. If you're a D&D player and your choices are between action figures and game-relevant minis (or books or power cards or shiny, shiny dice), you're going to buy the minis.

The best solution here might be to package an exclusive mini with each figure.
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Re: Dungeons & Dragons: What is Hasbro waiting for?

Mon Aug 17, 2020 3:41 am

secondwhiteline wrote: The best solution here might be to package an exclusive mini with each figure.
Even assuming that doesn't increase the cost of the figure for whatever reason, in the US you're still talking 19.99 as a starting price for collector-oriented action figures now. I don't see a lot of tabletop gamers rushing to buy figures they don't want to get a 20-dollar mini. Not saying 20 bucks for a mini is crazy.. it sure isn't. But I can say the gamers I personally know wouldn't even be remotely interested in jumping into the 'action figure chase' to find a single miniature and an action figure they don't want. And that's on top of minis currently going for 15 bucks for a box of 4. 20 bucks for one, plus a figure you need to sort out how to get rid of, is probably a non-starter.

I agree with your point that a part of this is that tabletop gaming already -tends- to be fairly expensive. While it's certainly not required, most tabletop gamers I know buy plenty of supplemental material, and sometimes minis and such as well. And dice, of course. On top of that... what does a gamer do with an action figure? Most of the ones I know actually are not action figure collectors already. So what does an action figure bring to their hobby? Nothing. You'll almost -never- give them an action figure of -their- characters, so what's in there to grab their attention? I don't know a lot of gamers that desperately want a random bugbear action figure. If anything, they'd be getting statues of dragons and such. But even then.. they'd probably just get more minis or wall art.

I think trying to capture gamers is a losing battle. If they're not already collecting action figures, you're not going to get them to start with 'check out this goblin toy for 20 bucks.' They don't care. It doesn't interest them.

A D&D line just needs to appeal to actual action figure collectors that like fantasy. You're more likely to get He-Man fans to buy Beholder toys than you are to get D&D players to buy Beholder toys, no matter how weird that sounds.
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Re: Dungeons & Dragons: What is Hasbro waiting for?

Mon Aug 17, 2020 4:01 am

I know you're referencing the "real" D&D but I've always been sad that the cartoon never saw action figure form. I have such fond memories of watching it with my brother.

Give me a Wave 1:
Hank (Ranger)
Sheila (Thief)
Diana (Acrobat)
Eric (Cavalier)

And a Wave 2:
Presto (Magician)
Bobby (Barbarian)
Dungeon Master & Uni (The...Unicorn)
Venger (Evil Wizard)
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Re: Dungeons & Dragons: What is Hasbro waiting for?

Mon Aug 17, 2020 4:04 pm

KnightDamien wrote:
Mon Aug 17, 2020 3:41 am
Even assuming that doesn't increase the cost of the figure for whatever reason, in the US you're still talking 19.99 as a starting price for collector-oriented action figures now. I don't see a lot of tabletop gamers rushing to buy figures they don't want to get a 20-dollar mini. Not saying 20 bucks for a mini is crazy.. it sure isn't. But I can say the gamers I personally know wouldn't even be remotely interested in jumping into the 'action figure chase' to find a single miniature and an action figure they don't want. And that's on top of minis currently going for 15 bucks for a box of 4. 20 bucks for one, plus a figure you need to sort out how to get rid of, is probably a non-starter.

I agree with your point that a part of this is that tabletop gaming already -tends- to be fairly expensive. While it's certainly not required, most tabletop gamers I know buy plenty of supplemental material, and sometimes minis and such as well. And dice, of course. On top of that... what does a gamer do with an action figure? Most of the ones I know actually are not action figure collectors already. So what does an action figure bring to their hobby? Nothing. You'll almost -never- give them an action figure of -their- characters, so what's in there to grab their attention? I don't know a lot of gamers that desperately want a random bugbear action figure. If anything, they'd be getting statues of dragons and such. But even then.. they'd probably just get more minis or wall art.

I think trying to capture gamers is a losing battle. If they're not already collecting action figures, you're not going to get them to start with 'check out this goblin toy for 20 bucks.' They don't care. It doesn't interest them.

A D&D line just needs to appeal to actual action figure collectors that like fantasy. You're more likely to get He-Man fans to buy Beholder toys than you are to get D&D players to buy Beholder toys, no matter how weird that sounds.
I think you're absolutely right, but then the problem becomes that you're trying to get them to buy something from a niche market that's currently being served by Mythic Legions in one scale and Boss Fight in another. I guess some of the D&D-unique IP helps, like stuff from the cartoon and Drizz't, but then we've already established that gaming crossover material is unlikely to be huge draw here (cartoon/LJN nostalgia might be). Granted, maybe just being a widely available 6" line might help attract some people Legions isn't getting, especially if you cap it at a $20 price point for regular figures.
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Re: Dungeons & Dragons: What is Hasbro waiting for?

Tue Aug 18, 2020 1:47 am

secondwhiteline wrote: I guess some of the D&D-unique IP helps, like stuff from the cartoon and Drizz't,
And stuff based on the art in their books. I think that would be a big plus for them. And that's in addition to having access to plenty of D&D-specific monsters that they actually own, as well as all kinds of other stuff. If you're going to do a D&D line, you'd better dip into ALL of your related properties and start making Knights of Solamnia and stuff like that --- things that if anyone else tried to do it, it either wouldn't be close enough, or it would be lawsuit territory. They do own a fair amount of unique stuff.
The bonus to a lot of that is you can get literature fans into it, rather than just the gamers. So you're not so much relying on your gaming property to sell non-gaming stuff to gamers.
secondwhiteline wrote: Granted, maybe just being a widely available 6" line might help attract some people Legions isn't getting, especially if you cap it at a $20 price point for regular figures.
That too. I don't like Mythic Legions anyway. But I do think a big failing of that line is that it's just too expensive to perk up the interest of people that might just want some fun, cool fantasy toys. Much as I LOOOVE HACKS.. I think that line probably has the same problem. Plus, neither line is available at Walmart and Target. Easy accessibility and an approachable shelf price would automatically be a bit of a ... forgive the expression.. game changer, I think.

BUT... it's worth noting that tabletop gaming has struggled for the last decade and Wizards (as well as other gaming companies) has spent considerable time, development, and effort on how to get more people involved. I think Hasbro is probably still looking at D&D as a dying interest and maybe that's why they don't really see the potential in toys - because they're not even convinced of the potential of the thing the toys would be based on.
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Re: Dungeons & Dragons: What is Hasbro waiting for?

Tue Aug 18, 2020 4:56 am

Kassle wrote:
Mon Aug 17, 2020 4:01 am
I know you're referencing the "real" D&D but I've always been sad that the cartoon never saw action figure form. I have such fond memories of watching it with my brother.

Give me a Wave 1:
Hank (Ranger)
Sheila (Thief)
Diana (Acrobat)
Eric (Cavalier)

And a Wave 2:
Presto (Magician)
Bobby (Barbarian)
Dungeon Master & Uni (The...Unicorn)
Venger (Evil Wizard)
Why limit it to just those?
Since it’s an animated series, and we’re talking Hasbro, why not use their Legends format?

BAC: Tiamat
Hank (ranger)
Diana (acrobat)
Venger
Warduke
Lukyon (dwarf wizard)
Kareena
Orc army builder

BAC Demodragon
Eric (cavalier)
Shiela (thief)
Dungeon Master
Shadow Demon
Deklon (Knight)
Dekkion (ancient warrior)
Bog Beast army builder

BAC Amber
Presto (magician)
Bobby (barbarian) & Uni (unicorn)
Nameless One
Syrith (demon queen)
Sir John (Knight)
Kaliek (Wizard)
Slime Beast army builder

There’s several more characters, but that would cover the highlights
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Re: Dungeons & Dragons: What is Hasbro waiting for?

Tue Aug 18, 2020 7:07 am

No current movie/show, no shelf space. Unless they're going to go online-only through Pulse, it doesn't get much more cut and dry than that. Corporate buyers probably wouldn't even let them get 2 sentences in before shutting them down.
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Re: Dungeons & Dragons: What is Hasbro waiting for?

Tue Aug 18, 2020 7:13 am

Hasbro should still be ashamed that the Cityville Kre-o sets were infinitely more interesting than the Dungeons & Dragons ones. All the themes were probably better than D&D, but Cityville had the creativity and weird-cool factor that D&D needed.

But the main issue with D&D is probably brand accessibility. I can only name a few campaign settings off the top of my head. I thought there might be some place on their feedback survey to say that action figures might be a good merchandising tie-in, but I got bored about a quarter of the way in. They do realize the game doesn't have to be tedious... right?

https://www.surveygizmo.com/s3/5745935/dd&src=mxheader

A D&D toy line needs a brand manager that doesn't bury it in nothing but grimdark themes and messy lore. Until Hasbro finds the right person, we'll get misfires like Cutie Marks & Dragons. Maybe cute as a $5 set of Trapper Keeper stickers. I'd tell somebody to buy literally any other fantasy toy on the market before thinking about spending $60+ on that "officially licensed" set.
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Re: Dungeons & Dragons: What is Hasbro waiting for?

Mon Aug 24, 2020 2:51 am

I did suggest the idea of D&D figures again to Salvatore and he answered:

“ I love to see all the merch on my works. It’s fun, and that’s part of the point. The FunkoPop set seemed to go pretty well, from what I can tell. So who knows?”

There is a new game coming and the movie next year. Fingers crossed.
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Re: Dungeons & Dragons: What is Hasbro waiting for?

Mon Aug 24, 2020 9:22 pm

Probably way too niche- but could there be demand for characters from the likes of Dragonlance and Forgotten Realms?

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