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Bigwest will do a global release of the MACROSS series... Games and Toys too!


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17 hours ago, Zinjo said:

Animego's release was the best outside of Japan.  The audio was sourced from BW and they went to a lot of effort to remaster it from the limited source material they had. 

The HG dub was an awful mess and in many ways an insult to Macross fans.  Getting Mari to reprise her role in the dub really didn't work as well as they thought.  Her accent is still pretty strong which became a bit distracting.   As it was, I saw the first disc and that was more than enough to send me running back to my Japanese subtitled version.

The dub released by ADV would have been ok for me if they just pronounce “Macross” properly. Accent on the first syllable instead of on the second.  But I’m still thankful for this release because my kids were introduced to the original story of Macross with this DVD set.  I always step in saying “Macross” properly everytime a character from the DVD would mention that word.  Ugh! :rolleyes:

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I don't know if it was that dub in particular but usually it is the pronunciation of Hikaru that gets me.  Whenever doing a dub the VAs should be made to listen to the names of the main characters (at least) till they can pronounce them reasonably close to how the names are pronounced in the native language.

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On 5/20/2021 at 1:30 AM, uzernaem said:

Ironically, the only thing could make Macross mainstream now is Sony's Robotech film.

While a well done live action movie has the potential to do for Macross what the Bayverse did for Transformers, the quality of such a film depends on who they hire to write, direct, and star in it. If they go low on production, it likely won't do well. Even a well known lead actor won't save a movie; consider Ghost in the Shell. Too, as a Macross fan, I'm not crazy about the changes they made to the story, especially the nature of the Protoculture, nor the addition of Mospeada and Southern Cross. I'm just not, nor shall I ever be, a Robotech fan.

Personally, if I was going to try to raise awareness of a property like Macross which has an established body of work, I'd get some good dubs made and introduce them on a far reaching streaming service, or services. Heck, if possible, I'd work out a deal with Cartoon Network to show Frontier over a period of several weekends at good time slots just to get one of the modern , and IMHO, better quality, series out there to generate attention and bait the hook, as it were, to create interest in the franchise as a whole. Along with that, maybe produce some in-between commentary showing off toys, talking about the music production, the process of creating some of the valk scenes- stuff that serves to further pique interest and make people want more.

Judging by the enduring popularity of Transformers, there's certainly a market for transforming robots here in the Americas; you couldn't turn around without seeing some sort of transforming robot back in the 80's, but along the way, Hasbro locked it up and Transformers is the only domestic game in town today. From a marketing perspective, I'd want to foot-stomp the availability of these awesome Macross transforming jets in the American marketplace as much as possible. Furthermore, Transformers isn't exactly known for good transforming jets, so a series of realistic and kibble free transforming jets would encounter little competition from Hasbro, unless they really stepped up their game. I'm sure they wouldn't like having another transforming product on the market, but I don't know that they'd have any legal recourse to stop the marketing of Macross valks here in the Americas. Personally, along with Transformers and Macross valks, I'd love to see a resurgence of transforming robot popularity here in the US. 

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Posted (edited)
On 5/20/2021 at 1:30 AM, uzernaem said:

Ironically, the only thing could make Macross mainstream now is Sony's Robotech film.

In the aftermath of Remix, I would take people like you more seriously if that franchise did not try to be more like Macross in the most humiliating ways possible.

Edited by Einherjar
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On 5/22/2021 at 1:34 AM, M'Kyuun said:

Judging by the enduring popularity of Transformers, there's certainly a market for transforming robots here in the Americas; you couldn't turn around without seeing some sort of transforming robot back in the 80's

I miss those days. (sniff) :sad:

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1 hour ago, pengbuzz said:

I miss those days. (sniff) :sad:

Me too. Now the only converting robot toys on american shelves are Transformers and weird dollar-store things. There's no in-between.

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2 hours ago, JB0 said:

Me too. Now the only converting robot toys on american shelves are Transformers and weird dollar-store things. There's no in-between.

Which is why Bandai needs to recognize both the desire for more transforming bots and the void that all those beautiful Macross Valkyries could fill.

A few years ago, Wally carried these large (approx leader or commander scaled) transforming cars. I never bought one, but they looked fairly poseable and the car modes looked good. They were a bit cheaper than their Transformer shelf mates, but I'd be lying if I said I wasn't curious about them, having looked at one or two in the store before putting them back. I don't remember what they were called, but I believe they, like most stuff, were made in China. Doesn't really narrow things down much, I know. Beyond those toys, which I haven't seen on the shelves in probably a couple of years now, there really isn't anything comparable to Transformers. Thanks to Netflix, we had Voltron stuff a few years ago, although, admittedly, Playmates quality was just so-so. The only other domestic transforming stuff that I can think of is the Power Ranger stuff, which I've never been into. The 80s was a golden era of transforming robot bliss; it's just a shame that toy technology was so abysmally poor back then. Imagine if we'd had today's levels of engineering 37 years ago. Brings a tear.

With all the resurgence of 80s stuff, it's a huge miss that transforming toys haven't ridden that wave here in the States. I am glad, however, that Japanese and Chinese companies are still pumping out updates to old 80s transforming stuff like the Garlands, the Legioss/Ride Armors, and Voltron, just to name a few. It'd be wonderful to see that stuff on shelves here as well as seeing a burgeoning domestic introduction of more transforming mecha IPs. I keep hoping.

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Posted (edited)
4 hours ago, JB0 said:

Me too. Now the only converting robot toys on american shelves are Transformers and weird dollar-store things. There's no in-between.

Yeah; the places like Odd Lots (now Big Lots), Railroad Salvage and other discount clearance places had literal tons of them. Now, I can hardly find any. I cannot even find "Code 007 Iron Monarch (G1 Megatron KO)" without it being as expensive on Ebay as the real one! And the Convertors series had some really good ones that I would make into Autobots or Decepticons as I needed them.

 

2 hours ago, M'Kyuun said:

Which is why Bandai needs to recognize both the desire for more transforming bots and the void that all those beautiful Macross Valkyries could fill.

A few years ago, Wally carried these large (approx leader or commander scaled) transforming cars. I never bought one, but they looked fairly poseable and the car modes looked good. They were a bit cheaper than their Transformer shelf mates, but I'd be lying if I said I wasn't curious about them, having looked at one or two in the store before putting them back. I don't remember what they were called, but I believe they, like most stuff, were made in China. Doesn't really narrow things down much, I know. Beyond those toys, which I haven't seen on the shelves in probably a couple of years now, there really isn't anything comparable to Transformers. Thanks to Netflix, we had Voltron stuff a few years ago, although, admittedly, Playmates quality was just so-so. The only other domestic transforming stuff that I can think of is the Power Ranger stuff, which I've never been into. The 80s was a golden era of transforming robot bliss; it's just a shame that toy technology was so abysmally poor back then. Imagine if we'd had today's levels of engineering 37 years ago. Brings a tear.

With all the resurgence of 80s stuff, it's a huge miss that transforming toys haven't ridden that wave here in the States. I am glad, however, that Japanese and Chinese companies are still pumping out updates to old 80s transforming stuff like the Garlands, the Legioss/Ride Armors, and Voltron, just to name a few. It'd be wonderful to see that stuff on shelves here as well as seeing a burgeoning domestic introduction of more transforming mecha IPs. I keep hoping.

I remember those: they were the M.A.R.S. Convertors-

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This particular one was the basis I used to build my custom MP Leader-1 (Go-Bots)-

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Sadly, even those are gone. But like you, I fervently hope one day, all of them return.

Edited by pengbuzz
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M.A.R.S. Converters- yep, that's them! If I had more space for odd stuff, I probably would have picked one or two of them up just because. They don't look like bad toys, but with all the other stuff I collect, esp LEGO, space is ever more at a premium and I have to be choosy.

That's an incredible job converting the Converter into Leader-1- mad skilz!:hi:

Keep hoping- as much as one would think the Transformers live action films would have been a catalyst for increasing interest in the transforming toy market among toy companies, oddly it just didn't happen. If ever there was going to be an 80s-like resurgence of transforming toys, I thought that'd be it, but sadly, no. I'm not sure any other similar franchise, except Gobots, would ever reach such a wide audience in the US. Unfortunately the rights to Gobots is owned by Hasbro, but they don't have the license to produce Machine Robo stuff, hence the lack of a Gobots line. I'm not sure they'd put out a Gobots line if they could, though, so protective and nurturing are they of Transformers. It was nice to have Voltron toys on the shelves for a few years, but I wish they'd contracted with a company that makes higher quality stuff. Too, it would have been lovely had Bandai USA decided to ride the wave of popularity in the West and release their DX Voltron in the Americas. Even LEGO put out a Voltron set! Didn't happen, though. To that end, I doubt that Macross, if it gains any sort of traction here in the US, will ever enjoy even a fraction of the popularity of Transformers, although I hope that it will gain enough to make Bandai believe there's a market for their Macross merch, fanning the flame for model companies to follow suit. Who knows, it may be the thing that inspires some young entrepreneur with a penchant for crafting to come up with some new transforming idea. Look at what 52Toys in China are doing with their Beast/MegaBox toys, or Big Firebird, or TFC toys with their Craft series of transforming real world Chinese military vehicles. We need that sort of spirit here in the US to put transforming toys back in the public consciousness, and on shelves, and in specialty stores. I hope it happens.

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1 hour ago, M'Kyuun said:

Keep hoping- as much as one would think the Transformers live action films would have been a catalyst for increasing interest in the transforming toy market among toy companies, oddly it just didn't happen. If ever there was going to be an 80s-like resurgence of transforming toys, I thought that'd be it, but sadly, no.

I blame the bayformers designs, most of the toys of which aren't even transforming. And the ones that do are screen inaccurate panel-origami.

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31 minutes ago, Sanity is Optional said:

I blame the bayformers designs, most of the toys of which aren't even transforming. And the ones that do are screen inaccurate panel-origami.

I respectfully disagree. I'm not, nor have ever been, a fan of the Bayverse aesthetic. I've been fairly outspoken in my criticism of those designs over the years, as mechanically, they make no sense, and are pure CG fantasy. However, I'll make the argument all day and night that Bay's films put Transformers back into public consciousness in a very successful and lucrative fashion globally. Bayverse resuscitated a declining franchise, which paved the way for shows like Animated and Prime, and also inadvertently open the gateway for a spike in G1 popularity via the little pre-live action film toyline called Classics. If there had been no live-action film in '07, there wouldn't have been a need for a filler line, so Classics may not have happened without Bayverse. That'd be a great question to pose to Hasbro at a panel. I certainly don't think they ever intended Classics to blow up like it did, spawning the last 14 years of what we know as CHUG, or Generations as a collective term.

As to the Bayverse toys, despite my adverse opinion of the aesthetic, I've bought many Bayverse toys over the years, and my impression of the majority has been that they were ingenious in their engineering, especially the toys between RotF and TF: Prime. I distinctly remember the complexity of the toys becoming a common complaint to Hasbro, which led to a subsequent over-simplification in the toys that lasted for a number of years until  we started seeing an overall advancement in engineering with Titans Return. But during the Bay period, we got gems like RotF leader Prime, figs like Breacher, which at scout class (basically legends), is an incredibly complex fig for its size. There are a lot of examples of complex figs if you roam the toy galleries. Were they all amazing?- no. Every line has its turds, and there were plenty throughout the Bayverse period. But there were, in my experience, far more figs with some ingenuity behind them than not. As to the use of panels to effect some elements of transformation among the Bayverse figs, it's important to point out that panel-forming is prevalent among just about every TF line, and second, Takara were dealing for the first time with impossible transformations, working backwards from obviously mechanically unfeasible artistic confabulations, and there was no choice but to cheat many of the designs. How else were they going to do it? Honestly, for the most part, it's an incredible feat of creativity and ingenuity on Takara's part to take these nonsensical designs and translate them into a working toy that at least has some semblance to their onscreen likenesses. Obviously some were closer to home than others, but given their history creating very blocky robots, often designing the actual working protos from wood, to suddenly having these complex designs with thousands of parts strewn throughout, panels breaking up at odd and irregular angles, car parts appearing in incongruent and illogical places on the robot mode relative to their placement in vehicle mode, I think they did ok. The challenges posed by these designs led to Takara's really stretching their creative wings, and out of that we got the Animated and Prime toys which both departed greatly from the old blocky bot look of the 80s. Special mention to Alex Kubalsky, the only non-Japanese designer to ever work for Takara, whose design aesthetic had a tendency towards curved and non-blocky transforming models, helped steer the overall design approach at Takara when the Classics and '07 live action Transformers film toys were being developed. Although he hasn't worked at Takara for nearly a decade now, his influence continues to reverberate in the toys that have come since

All this said, I think it's easy to generalize and denigrate the toys of the Bayverse era as one thing or another, but in doing so, I think a great disservice is done. I have mostly good memories of messing with the many toys I bought during that time. I also recall being incredibly frustrated with some of them, too, for their extreme complexity. I sometimes wondered, if I, an aircraft mechanic and lifelong fan of transforming toys, was having this much difficulty transforming this toy, how the hell was a kid in the target age range of 5- 14ish going to figure it out? RotF Blazemaster comes to mind as one of those PITA transformations.  This got a bit long-winded, but I hope I at least gave you some food for thought, as it were. If you take the time to peruse the toy galleries or look at old toy reviews, you may come away with a different perspective. IMHO, there were some neat toys to come out  during the Bay era and after and, though I vehemently abhor the films and the Bayformer aesthetic,  I've no regrets adding many of those toys to my collection.

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I was mainly referring to representations of the film transformers, in their film forms.

The Bay aesthetic is flat out impossible to make a screen-accurate transforming toy from, and frankly I do consider that to have hurt the mass-market appeal. It meant that the conversion rate between movie watchers and people who bought movie toys/figures was likely lower than if the two had matched up more closely.

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Posted (edited)
20 hours ago, Sanity is Optional said:

I was mainly referring to representations of the film transformers, in their film forms.

The Bay aesthetic is flat out impossible to make a screen-accurate transforming toy from, and frankly I do consider that to have hurt the mass-market appeal. It meant that the conversion rate between movie watchers and people who bought movie toys/figures was likely lower than if the two had matched up more closely.

Only the book keepers at Hasbro know for sure.

I consider the situation from the POV that the target audience for these are kids, which undoubtedly make up the lion's share of Transformers consumption. There's a similar argument for LEGO consumption, but ultimately for both brands, kids are the primary consumer. That said, I doubt that kids care as much about the use of 'cheats' or alternative methods rather than actual mechanical means to achieve transformation.  The adult fan base cares, but, as much as some would like to believe it, we're neither the target audience nor the major consumer. To that end, I'm inclined to opine that the cheat-laden transformations of the Bayverse figs had less of an impact on sales than whether or not the characters themselves appealed to kids onscreen or aesthetically as a toy. Most kids aren't really assessing the mechanical honesty of the transformation- if it looks cool, they'll buy it. It doesn't hurt that Bay chose beautiful cars for his films, which results in a nice two-fer if the bot mode is equally appealing. 

On a personal note, Transformers came out when I was 13, and after seeing commercials for these things for months, I was dying to get my hands on the toys. When they finally appeared in stores, I chose Prowl, primarily b/c the artwork of his bot mode on the box spoke to me more than the actual product shots, and his design sang to my soul (still does). Extricating him from his box in the car on the way home and transforming him, I was met with an overwhelming sense of disappointment. It didn't look like the art, and it most certainly didn't move as depicted on the boxart and in the toon. At thirteen, I knew that the mechanical reality didn't match the advertisement, so to speak. I went on to buy any number of G1 Transformers after that, and was generally met with the same sense of disappointment with every one, although they still had their charm. I wouldn't get the Prowl I wanted that day in the car until 29 years later with the release of MP Prowl. I assume the same thing happens with kids today: the younger kids (TFs are suggested for kids 5 and up) are far less concerned with actual mechanics and more with looks and the appeal of the character, whilst the older kids likely care about both. And some of those kids, despite knowing that the transformations are cheats (on Bayformers specifically, although the phenomenon is certainly not isolated to that particular line- look no further than WFC Arcee, Runabout, Tracks, & Hot Rod, just to name a few), like me, continue to buy them regardless, in spite of some possible disillusionment. Succinctly put, I respectfully disagree with your view that the 'creative' solutions employed in the face of impossible transformations "hurt the mass-market appeal" when considering the entirety of the target audience, and the likelihood of said audience to overlook that disparity in lieu of other more appealing factors. I'm outside that target audience, but I'm one of those that overlooked the 'dishonesty' of the transformation, and enjoyed the still oft challenging engineering that Takara employed in many of the Bayverse figs. With all the fan reviews of these things that can be found on Youtube and such, I'm not alone. 

Kinda getting a bit off topic. I would have thought, having finally secured the ability to market their wares here in the West, BW and Bandai would have taken swift action to get  product on shelves, but neither products nor shows seem to be forthcoming.  After all the haggling to secure an agreement with HG, I hope they haven't lost interest. At the very least, get some good subbed anime out there, or better, good dubs for broader appeal to set the stage for toys and other merch. 

Edited by M'Kyuun
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Posted (edited)

Well, from my personal perspective, the Bayverse aesthetic, horrible underside kibble, panel-origami, and complete screen-innaccuracy in the transformation kills any value to the transformation. May as well just have 2 separate figures that are each more accurate (and more poseable).

 

So that's at least one person who avoids the product line because of the mechanical stupidity of the Bay designs.

Of course, could be that Macross designs have spoiled me, or could be because I'm a mechanical engineer. Either way, one less person buying TF schlock.

Edited by Sanity is Optional
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On 5/28/2021 at 9:57 AM, Sanity is Optional said:

Of course, could be that Macross designs have spoiled me, or could be because I'm a mechanical engineer.

I think the first half of this is absolutely true (and I agree with the second half because I'm in a similar situation :lol:).  Macross designs have definitely spoiled me for transforming aircraft designs, because they tend to be much more concerned with remaining at least mostly physically possible.  Kawamori may design the battroids first, and work backwards to the fighter mode, but he designs them with the full intent of collapsing any robot parts down to be completely contained within an aerodynamic aircraft.

That's the one thing Transformers never really seem to care about anymore.  They'll absolutely try and mimic the character design from the cartoon, but do not give two shakes if the transformation into an "airplane" means that the character wears an airplane as a backpack, and the "transformation" consists of tucking in his arms so they hide under the wings when you fold them out.  Starscream and the Seekers/Coneheads have historically be fairly decent.. but things like Superion and the movie Jetfire design just cannot pretend to care.

I would really love to see Macross transforming toys become more prevalent, if only to have more examples on the market of transforming airplanes that actually look like airplanes.  What's the point of a transforming toy if kids only ever want to play with it in one mode?  You may as well just buy action figures at that point.

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22 hours ago, Chronocidal said:

I think the first half of this is absolutely true (and I agree with the second half because I'm in a similar situation :lol:).  Macross designs have definitely spoiled me for transforming aircraft designs, because they tend to be much more concerned with remaining at least mostly physically possible.  Kawamori may design the battroids first, and work backwards to the fighter mode, but he designs them with the full intent of collapsing any robot parts down to be completely contained within an aerodynamic aircraft.

That's the one thing Transformers never really seem to care about anymore.  They'll absolutely try and mimic the character design from the cartoon, but do not give two shakes if the transformation into an "airplane" means that the character wears an airplane as a backpack, and the "transformation" consists of tucking in his arms so they hide under the wings when you fold them out.  Starscream and the Seekers/Coneheads have historically be fairly decent.. but things like Superion and the movie Jetfire design just cannot pretend to care.

I would really love to see Macross transforming toys become more prevalent, if only to have more examples on the market of transforming airplanes that actually look like airplanes.  What's the point of a transforming toy if kids only ever want to play with it in one mode?  You may as well just buy action figures at that point.

There’s an entire Hasbro line devoted to robot mode specifically because of that reason.

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On 4/23/2021 at 5:28 AM, jvmacross said:

Or BW can just reboot SDFM with new Mikimoto/Kawamori designs for the "41" characters and mecha....and it won't matter what HG does with the original 41 designs....

What on earth would be the point of that?

Without those iconic designs Macross is nothing.

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1 hour ago, jvmacross said:

Exactly.....

HG won

I’d wait for whatever is supposed to replace Robotech Remix before saying HG won anything.  It’s clear that every few years people in that mess, and the fans, have a bad habit of gloating prematurely and ending up having to defend something embarrassing as the actual result.

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12 minutes ago, Einherjar said:

I’d wait for whatever is supposed to replace Robotech Remix before saying HG won anything.  It’s clear that every few years people in that mess, and the fans, have a bad habit of gloating prematurely and ending up having to defend something embarrassing as the actual result.

Nah....you are confusing the issue...no one wants HG's Robotech....the fans want SDFM/DYRL...wether or not it happens to have a HG license so as long as it is readily available in your neck of the woods, a HG license can be tolerated if it means lower prices and easy availability, in terms of what @Podtastic was referring to...HG definitely won........if you are a fan of SDFM/DYRL.....nothing has changed......you will still have to play "the game" every PO night to get anything related to SDFM/DYRL outside of Japan......

 

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9 minutes ago, Einherjar said:

True, I keep forgetting that the mech/toys is what’s important to a lot of people, not that supposed multi-generational/time travel/multiverse/space weed story BS.

I'd have to say the characters have been a driving force in the stories; otherwise folks would not want figures of them.

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But will this result in more Alien Bad Guy stuff being produced and sold? And/or featuring more prominently in the anime?

if it just results in more idols and valkyries then what really will have changed?:unknw:

17 hours ago, pengbuzz said:

I'd have to say the characters have been a driving force in the stories; otherwise folks would not want figures of them.

True.  But the figure range needs to expand beyond idols/humans. 

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4 hours ago, Podtastic said:

But will this result in more Alien Bad Guy stuff being produced and sold? And/or featuring more prominently in the anime?

if it just results in more idols and valkyries then what really will have changed?:unknw:

The figure range needs to expand beyond idols/humans. 

This here is something that's always struck me as odd. Where are all the Protodeviln stuff? Or the Marduk mecha (yeah yeah, "non-canon" as it is I'd still like to see a Gigamesh toy)? I don't even know if any of the later Destroids even have official releases. The one big problem that modern Macross seems to ignore is that the idols were just a single pylon in the foundation of the franchise. Yes, they are important, but the mecha are just as big of a part. I hope this pointless attempt to chase after Idolmaster and LoveLive ends sooner than later, because Macross is simply way, way more than selling idol dolls. 

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7 hours ago, Biomaster said:

This here is something that's always struck me as odd. Where are all the Protodeviln stuff? Or the Marduk mecha (yeah yeah, "non-canon" as it is I'd still like to see a Gigamesh toy)? I don't even know if any of the later Destroids even have official releases. The one big problem that modern Macross seems to ignore is that the idols were just a single pylon in the foundation of the franchise. Yes, they are important, but the mecha are just as big of a part. I hope this pointless attempt to chase after Idolmaster and LoveLive ends sooner than later, because Macross is simply way, way more than selling idol dolls. 

A few have bought the M2 license and produced the toys with some success. But, apparently, most don't see alien/enemy mecha selling. Always bear in mind that these folks are selling for the domestic market. Not the rest of us. Which is why the  idol money making machine is on full auto.. IF Macross were to make a significant enough splash world wide, perhaps things would change. Anyone holding their breath ?

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16 hours ago, Bolt said:

A few have bought the M2 license and produced the toys with some success. But, apparently, most don't see alien/enemy mecha selling. Always bear in mind that these folks are selling for the domestic market. Not the rest of us. Which is why the  idol money making machine is on full auto.. IF Macross were to make a significant enough splash world wide, perhaps things would change. Anyone holding their breath ?

*turns blue, then purple, then plaid, then paisley, then passes out*

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16 hours ago, Bolt said:

IF Macross were to make a significant enough splash world wide, perhaps things would change. Anyone holding their breath ?

I sincerely hope so. But sadly considering the type of climate mecha in general seems to be facing (the most popular stuff are always your run of the mill shonen anime) I doubt Macross will become much larger in terms of gains. Was it stunted by Harmony Gold? Certainly. Will this BW/HG deal fix things? We'll just have to see. 

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