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I didn't know P-Bandai US put the HGUC Owsla with Gigantic Arm Unit for preorder. I keep on checking that site when this was announced and became available first in the other region. I found out that P-Bandai US just put this for preorder just last Feb 24, and sad to say it's already sold out before the cut-off date. :( 

 

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8 hours ago, no3Ljm said:

I didn't know P-Bandai US put the HGUC Owsla with Gigantic Arm Unit for preorder. I keep on checking that site when this was announced and became available first in the other region. I found out that P-Bandai US just put this for preorder just last Feb 24, and sad to say it's already sold out before the cut-off date. :( 

 

Yeah, sorry that was actually up for quite a while. The popular items often get rereleases though, like that Vayeate/ Mercurious pack. So keep your eyes open or maybe have them give you notifications. 

Bbts May have it up for a slight markup. They seem to be pretty good at getting the exclusives 

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This just popped up, can't read it but apparently:

Quote
It has been confirmed that Bandai is now no longer letting Japanese stores to allow Gunpla kits to be bought out of the country so if you wonder why sites like AmiAmi and 1999 taken down their listings for Gunpla kits, you know now then.
This doesn't seem to apply to non Gundam series Bandai kits.
(Never mind that, also non Gundam series kits too, rip)

image.png.e52c070523cac392fe5b091af8e05dfb.png

Don't know if any of this is true but getting new kits directly from JPN may be challenging.  I usually support local for Gunpla, but the trickle down may be impactful.

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2 hours ago, Big s said:

Yeah, sorry that was actually up for quite a while. The popular items often get rereleases though, like that Vayeate/ Mercurious pack. So keep your eyes open or maybe have them give you notifications. 

Bbts May have it up for a slight markup. They seem to be pretty good at getting the exclusives 

Thanks. Hopefully they will put up the Owsla again down the line. I'm actually waiting for BBTS to post something. If not, I'll just wait. Besides, I have the upcoming MRD Hazel Gundam to look forward to. ;) 

7 minutes ago, Darth Mingus said:

Some of the Canadian Gunpla stores will have it as well and they do not get theirs from P-Bandai US/Bluefin.  With the exchange rate, you may end up paying slightly less than BBTS, depending on which store carries it.

Do they ship to US if ever? Is there some specific Canadian online stores that you can recommend? Thanks! :good: 

 

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Most of them do but shipping to the US has been a bit of a pain lately.  Pricing is all over the place recently due to shipping costs from Japan to Canada.  I got my PG Unleashed for essentially Japanese retail, not it is upwards of $100 CDN more.  Here is a list based on pricing/owner interactions

This store has been around for 30 years and my go-to.  Stock has been an issue, but he is super nice and will work with you to arrange shipping: https://scifianime.ca/

This store is newer, but has had great selection.  The owners are good guys: https://www.msmnstudio.com/

This store is relatively new, but the owner is a great guy.  Smaller selection but decent pricing: https://trinityhobby.com/

This store runs a YouTube channel that shows you what it is like to run a Gunpla shop.  Great selection, weird business practices.  Will ship to the US and offers unlimited private warehouse: https://www.canadiangundam.com/

There are a ton of shops out of the major hub cities Toronto and Vancouver, but most of those are overpriced.  I have not really interacted with the owners so I can't attest to them:

https://pandahobby.ca/

https://shokuningunpla.com/

https://torchlightgh.com/

https://www.imperialhobbies.ca/

https://www.ibuildrobots.ca/

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14 minutes ago, Darth Mingus said:

Most of them do but shipping to the US has been a bit of a pain lately.  Pricing is all over the place recently due to shipping costs from Japan to Canada.  I got my PG Unleashed for essentially Japanese retail, not it is upwards of $100 CDN more.  Here is a list based on pricing/owner interactions

This store has been around for 30 years and my go-to.  Stock has been an issue, but he is super nice and will work with you to arrange shipping: https://scifianime.ca/

This store is newer, but has had great selection.  The owners are good guys: https://www.msmnstudio.com/

This store is relatively new, but the owner is a great guy.  Smaller selection but decent pricing: https://trinityhobby.com/

This store runs a YouTube channel that shows you what it is like to run a Gunpla shop.  Great selection, weird business practices.  Will ship to the US and offers unlimited private warehouse: https://www.canadiangundam.com/

There are a ton of shops out of the major hub cities Toronto and Vancouver, but most of those are overpriced.  I have not really interacted with the owners so I can't attest to them:

https://pandahobby.ca/

https://shokuningunpla.com/

https://torchlightgh.com/

https://www.imperialhobbies.ca/

https://www.ibuildrobots.ca/

Thank you sir! I really appreciate it. :drinks::hi:

 

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It seems like HLJ will keep selling Gunpla for now. While I have a sizable backlog and prioritized collecting Metal Builds I wonder if I should order a PG while I still can. I don’t want to miss the experience of building one of those.

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14 minutes ago, Scyla said:

It seems like HLJ will keep selling Gunpla for now. While I have a sizable backlog and prioritized collecting Metal Builds I wonder if I should order a PG while I still can. I don’t want to miss the experience of building one of those.

Using Google Translate on the letter, I don't believe it was sent to the AmiAmi, HLJ of the world.  These shops tend to sell Gunpla at or slightly below MSRP.  I think there were a number of Japanese based retailers who were jacking up the cost of new gunpla for quick, additional profit.

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20 minutes ago, Darth Mingus said:

Using Google Translate on the letter, I don't believe it was sent to the AmiAmi, HLJ of the world.  These shops tend to sell Gunpla at or slightly below MSRP.  I think there were a number of Japanese based retailers who were jacking up the cost of new gunpla for quick, additional profit.

Didn’t amiami purge their Gunpla section on their website?

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3 hours ago, Darth Mingus said:

This just popped up, can't read it but apparently:

image.png.e52c070523cac392fe5b091af8e05dfb.png

Don't know if any of this is true but getting new kits directly from JPN may be challenging.  I usually support local for Gunpla, but the trickle down may be impactful.

Very frustrating and does make me feel a bit angry that Bandai is pulling such a move.

Buying locally has never been an option unless I intentionally want to burn money and to my knowledge there is no central distributor for the EU like like Bluefin or similar.

All this talk about global markets and how thing become easier and we can all benefit from it.... Doesn't seem to count for the average individual consumer, instead we get more steps, more stones, more hurdles placed in our path. Sorry for the slight rant, but yeah I am a bit pissed about this.

Edited by lechuck
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Wow! This is annoying. I just went on to hobby search and under their gundam kits section, there are no gundam kits. I like using their site to check out their instructions on kits sometimes. This is an odd decision.

 I guess maybe Bandai plans to bump up the supply to the U.S.

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That's the thing I'm curious about. Does Bandai killing their local online stores for selling Gunplas? Are they just going to sell Gunplas worldwide directly from their official distributors? They sure know that these retailers even small ones helps on spreading their product worldwide. So I'm not sure what's the reason behind it.

 

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It’s also possible they might do something crazy, like actually start doing some manufacturing of the kits here in the U.S. since their process is requiring fewer human workers outside of the initial design and planning. The last time I saw one of their gunpla manufacturing videos they only seem to have a small crew that just mainly checks for problems and the rest was automated. Even the warehouse had automated fork lifts and packaging if I remember correctly. But that seems a bit more extreme than what’s probably going on. It’s more than likely gonna be mass shipping from there overseas and the distributed to stores out this way. Not sure how that will effect other countries yet or if they have a bigger distribution plan for them. Right now all we can do is guess and wait for a possible announcement or like most things Bandai, just wait til it happens 

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I have a bunch of legacy kits on backorder at HLJ, expressly because they're old and/or OOP and/or otherwise unlikely to ever find their way overseas. This new policy kind of really frakking sucks, if it is as it says and it applies to them.

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4 minutes ago, kajnrig said:

I have a bunch of legacy kits on backorder at HLJ, expressly because they're old and/or OOP and/or otherwise unlikely to ever find their way overseas. This new policy kind of really frakking sucks, if it is as it says and it applies to them.

Maybe email hlj and see if they currently know how they can handle your situation. I’d imagine they can still ship what you have ordered or at least the items in the warehouse. Hopefully anything preordered as well.

 I was reading a Redit article, that may or may not be legit and just says that they are doing this so things will be distributed to the U.S. since bluefin is being absorbed by Bandai USA. The manufacturing would still be done in Japan. Again not sure if that’s legit or not 

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It seems that this also affects non gundam kits as well. I was gonna check out some of the kyoukai Senki kits on hobby search and they don’t have them listed either. Looks like pretty much a lot of the business the Japanese to American sites will be losing quite a bit of business. Hlj may not be awkward yet, they still seem unaffected or at least not updated.

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Bit of clarification has come to this Bandai notice.

  • It's to do with the local stores which does sales and shipping overseas
  • Specifically with the stores that did not have any purchase restrictions to what an account could buy
  • Bandai understood that stores like CDJapan and AmiAmi were selling bulk loads of kits to accounts who would do secondary re-sale overseas with their mark-up
  • This was causing continued stock shortage in the JDM and given JDM is the most important/biggest market for Bandai then they did this to protect their most important customers
  • This only affected the retail stores that sold unrestricted numbers overseas
  • HLJ always has imposed limits on order numbers and thus aren't affected
  • BlueFin/Bandai USA are importers and distributors and thus aren't affected
  • HobbyCo for Australia are the same as above, not affected
  • Other Japanese distributors who's business model is to sell in bulk are also not affected
  • Bandai has also been working on increasing their production capacity to further future proof and alleviate the stock supply shortages in the long term

So if you used to buy from a reseller where you never knew their source and now they don't have ability to sell anything - the above is the answer.

You may need to switch to HLJ or any other local or local-online store that sources their kits from importer distributors like BlueFin or HobbyCo.

This negatively affects those who live in countries that don't have an official Bandai import and distribution license and their only source of kits has been from the secondary resellers who purchased from places like CDJapan and AmiAmi - for these people, it'll have to be importing their kits from places like HLJ from here on till Bandai has been able to increase its production capacity significantly.

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That seems odd since hobby search always had restricted numbers as well. It was usually something like 3 per household. I really don’t understand the extreme demand for Bandai kits. When they’re popular they reprint them like candy.

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I just double checked both hlj and hobby search and hobby search is 3 per household while hlj was selling that hg shenlong at only 1 per person. I don’t think that kits should be limited too much especially with something like a Zaku and a person might just want to do a cool display with a commander and two subordinates. I guess 10 might be a bit much, but 3 doesn’t seem bad to me with standard releases. As far as web exclusives, those are a bit tougher and probably should be limited, but those aren’t even part of the issue at all.

The only standard kit I had an issue getting a hold of from one of these sites recently was the nightingale and the second shipment came through not long enough to complain about two months later. I only ordered one since the damn thing is so big. I’m so back logged that I still haven’t built it. I was actually more excited for the Hasegawa Regult and started that one immediately.

 I’m not the type to support scalpers, but there’s really no need with a standard Bandai release to use them anyway. Maybe with one of the web exclusives, but like I said that’s not the issue here.

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Yeah I don't know to be honest.  None of this really affects me personally because the majority of my kits have been second hand buys off Facebook Marketplace of recent years.  

There has been the odd occasion that I have gone and purchased at a retail store but I think it was nearly 2 years ago with an MG XN Raiser.  I also don't think the scalping situation is something that really affects Australia all that much because Australian prices by basic default is scalper pricing anyway.

Many times during the initial phase of my entry to the hobby I'd see a kit which Bandai recommends to be ¥2,200 be sitting on store shelves for $AU35-45 where a direct conversion it should be $AU25.  It's this alone that has had me shy away from retail purchases for the most part.  I got banned from Facebook Gunpla groups because I asked what I thought was reasonable questions to why the pricing of kits was so much over what Bandai RRP sets them at... I guess the importer asked favours to stop the questioning.

I honestly don't have answers to why Bandai is doing this nor how much of a negative effect that scalpers have been having against the JDM Gunpla towards their stock shortages.  I hope though that my above post will help give some understanding to some who are experiencing some of the negative effects to why their usual suppliers aren't able to supply stock.

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1 hour ago, kajnrig said:

Thanks for the clarification, @dero. That's a shame about Amiami/CDJ/et al. Seems kind of heavy-handed on Bandai's part... Wouldn't a cease and desist have sufficed?

If you think about it, it was a cease and desist...  Thus CDJapan, AmiAmi and the like have taken their Gunpla off their site's listings.

Bandai's priority is their local market.  The scalpers and resellers were negatively affecting the Japanese builders being unable to get any stock.  Bandai's affecting that situation first while production capacity builds to enable a release of the taps to the overseas markets.

I think by the time this happens, the overseas wholesale and distribution will have reconfigured somewhat because the international market purchasers will be sourcing their purchases from elsewhere.

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1 hour ago, kajnrig said:

Thanks for the clarification, @dero. That's a shame about Amiami/CDJ/et al. Seems kind of heavy-handed on Bandai's part... Wouldn't a cease and desist have sufficed?

I thought so too. But we don’t know what happened before they got the letter from Bandai. Maybe Bandai demanded that the shops implement a more scalper unfriendly ordering process at first but they refused.

Edited by Scyla
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As far as collectibles go, I could see limiting toys far more than models. The demand for Bandai kits has been a bit wild though and the scalping situation attached to the standard plastic non limited kits is beyond me. I guess it is possible like said above that these stores had been asked to only sell one per person. But honestly I would think a practice like that is just doing the consumer a favor, where the store is taking a gamble at how things will sell. In the whole kit department it’s not as popular worldwide as the action figure market, so they probably worry about not being able to make enough profit by selling mass quantities of some main character gundam kit versus the funky canon fodder badguy kits that sometimes only the most hardcore army builder would want. I think limits are reasonable to ask, but limiting one kit per person is a bit much, and punishing the retailers isn’t really the proper thing to do if they’re not being totally ridiculous about their limits.

 I still don’t really think basic kits, especially Bandai mass produced kits should be a collectible. One of the more interesting kits from wave recently was that monobike. That to me would be more collectible since it’s probably nowhere near as mass produced as the rg hi nu. And nobody worried if some people ordered one two or nine of them.  

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A better example of something Bandai has recently put out are those 30 minutes missions kits. I don’t see a problem with people buying multiples of those kits. I personally don’t own any, but have been tempted by a few. They were made to be customizable and if someone wants to buy a few to customize a squad, I don’t think that’s a problem at all. Maybe a smaller limit like three or five, would be ok. But to have a highly customizable kit where you might only be able to get one or one of each weapon set.

 Another recent example I could think of is that currently there are three variations of the hg messer. The after market decal sheet that Bandai made only has enough of the Mafty markings for one Incase you used the other markings for the xi and Penelope. In a case like that, unless you buy bootleg decals then you would need three sets for those kits. Honestly they should have included more emblems on those sheets.

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I got a reply from HLJ

"We have no plans to suspend selling Bandai kits of any kind overseas, and intend to fill all Bandai and Gunpla orders we receive. We don’t have any changes to report regarding this, but rest assured we will let you know if anything changes in the future."

Makes you wonder what's up at Hobbysearch?

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3 hours ago, electric indigo said:

I got a reply from HLJ

"We have no plans to suspend selling Bandai kits of any kind overseas, and intend to fill all Bandai and Gunpla orders we receive. We don’t have any changes to report regarding this, but rest assured we will let you know if anything changes in the future."

Makes you wonder what's up at Hobbysearch?

If the news from dero is correct, it’s because hlj only allows one of each preorder item per customer. Hobby search on the other hand allows three. So I guess going by this hobby search was breaking that quota. I don’t think I have any Bandai kits currently on preorder with them, but I’m wondering if anyone else does and if they will still honor those. I know back when hlj was having Star Wars problems they still honored the preorders made before the rule change.

 I actually like hlj, just wish they’d make their site a bit better. Hobbysearch has the easiest one to use and I’m gonna miss being able to reference the instruction manuals. I think they were the only site that did that.

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