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Old 29th December 2017, 02:03 PM
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FatalityPitt FatalityPitt is offline
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Join Date: 11th Sep 2016
Location: Melbourne
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I think this merging of the two brands can be a good thing. This means that Hasbro/Takara may now aim to release Transformers that will appeal to both Japanese and International fans in a single product line, and these toys will be available to everyone. I suspect Hasbro might have been contemplating this for a while, and even tested the waters by slowly releasing toys based on some Japanese G1 characters like CW Lio Kaiser and TR Black Shadow in Hasbro markets. For us in the Hasbro markets, it means we might get more of those Japanese G1 characters we always wanted (like Metalhawk), but they'll be easier to find on retail.

As for the Takara market in Japan, looking specifically at the the Legends line in 2016/17; the toys have nicer features (like Targetmasters, more vibrant decos, etc), but in my mind there's a couple drawbacks. They missed out on characters that were available in Hasbro's TR line, like Rumble, Alpha Trion, Sentinel Prime, Breakaway (Getaway), Krok, Quake, Ptero and even Black Shadow. True, they got Godbomber and Lio Convoy; but I think the range of characters available in TR was much greater and more diverse.

Another thing about the 2016/17 Legends line that made me think the Takara fans got the short end of the stick; the separation of the Titanmaster head components from their drones. Imagine being an Apeface fan living in Japan; to get the head component (representing the robot mode), you gotta buy Laserbeak; and to get the Jet/Gorilla drone (representing the alt-mode), you gotta buy Weirdwolf. Even if you get the 2 sets and reunite Apeface's head with his drone, the drone is still the wrong colour. But if you're lucky like us and live in the Hasbro market, and you want Apeface's head and drone in the "right" colours; all you had to do was walk into Kmart/Target and buy TR Apeface for $10 or less. Similar with other characters like Repugus. If you want a "Complete" Repugnus but live in Japan, you gotta buy Brawn AND Broadside.

Takara's Transformers are great, and even better than Hasbro's in some respects; but it's not all perfect. I think by merging the two brands, it'll allow Hasbro's strengths to cover whatever weaknesses Takara had in it's marketing approach, and bring Hasbro's product quality up to the same level as Takara's. Then again, there could be drawbacks for us as fans too. Before this merge, we had a choice between Hasbro and Takara Transformers. If we didn't like the Hasbro version, we could buy the Takara version instead. But with now with this merge, there's now basically a monopoly, and we may have less choices.
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