However, there IS a fair bit of news to report, since Fun Publications owner Brian Savage came on the club message boards last night for the first time in many weeks (since taking care of obligations for the recent GI Joe convention in New Orleans). He answered a great deal of questions about the running of the club and the upcoming convention, and since it's been a while since the last time I posted such reports from the board, now seems like a good time:
- In the topic, "Logistics Question for Club Exclusives?" Brian told us that there is no particular number of toys that must be sold in order for an exclusive to become profitable. It depends on the piece being considered, and (of course) the price charged for it.
- There were some recent issues at the club store, largely centered around the attempt to sell a few specimens of the San Diego Comic-Con "exclusive" (apparently available through several other outlets) Nemesis Prime. In the thread titled "Store Problems! Issues with my cart etc." Brian detailed some of the issues that came up in yesterday's frenzy to get the toy, and also detailed some of the problems store often has in keeping stock current with new items in general. Long story short on that one: Hasbro sends retailers toys in mixed cases of several different toys, and usually newer toys are packed alongside older ones. This means that, in order for a retailer to get the newer toys to sell to customers, they must also buy the older toys in that case. Often, retailers are reluctant to pick up too many such cases, lest they be stuck with a bunch of toys that customers already have, and so the newer toys are harder to find. This problem is exacerbated with online retailers, but happens in brick-and-mortar stores, too.
- In the thread: "Question on Battle Of The Boards: which day?" Brian established that the "Family Feud" style event (for which I like to think I was partly responsible for convincing the folks at FP was viable) will likely take place over a few days, depending on how many teams participate. Also, the way I read it (it seems subject to interpretation), the administrators of the various message boards will be responsible for sending in the names of people to be on their boards' teams, so if you're interested, talk to your friendly board administrator!
- In "Casino night and dinner...", Brian establishes that the dinner this year will be a buffet. There should be no longer be a problem because people can't eat certain items due to dietary restrictions.
- In regard to "Autographs" at the convention, people who sign up for the Primus or Protoform packages to attend the convention do not have to pay for celebrity autographs (although they are asked to bring no more than 2 items to sign per turn in line). For General Admission folks, there will be a $5 charge to allow you to go through the line once with 2 items.
- Back to something more club specific, people are always asking if there will be "New Head Molds for the Free Club Figures?" Brian suggested that for such remolded heads to be economically viable, there will need to be around 4,000+ people in the club. We're apparently a few thousand short of that at present.
- And, finally, in a thread titled (appropriately enough) "Contests," Brian announces that forms and rules for entering the customs contest will be up at Botcon.com within the next 10 days. Be sure to check it out!