Tag Archives: Crazy amounts of money

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Lucky Draw Protoform Starscream is mine. Thank Japan!

transformers-Gold-lucky-draw-protoform-starscream-movie

Worth its weight in gold… literally

I just wanted to drop in after an extended absence to report that I have found a grail in Japan during my trip.  The day after my birthday, I was able to snag this very rare lucky draw movie 1 figure that has eluded me for years since it’s initial release.  Originally one showed up on Ebay by the enigmatic TF seller Hydra.  I did not win the auction since it was purchased outright and it’s burned me ever since!  Now I can happily say it is mine.  A little bit out of my intended price range, but there supposedly only five of these and it was pretty much my birthday present so… justified, I think?

More coming from my Japan trip as soon as I get decent internet!  The struggle is real Collecticons!

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G2 Stunticons sell for $26,815 on Ebay – 71 bids – 974 watchers

g2-stunticons-on-ebay-2014

Now that’s some expensive plastic

Starting on June 27, 2014, a rather auspicious auction appeared under the ebay user z75sales: a bagged set of the Generation 2 Stunticons including never-before-seen factory-applied stickers and missile launchers for G2 Motormaster. Just yesterday, July 7th, the 10 day auction ended and the final bid was $26,815.00!  This is an unprecedented amount for a Transformers auction.  Here’s how it all went down.

The seller

The seller is a long-time ebayer who continues to state the same story: He is a broker who is selling a former Kenner / Hasbro employee’s estate sale.  The seller was kind enough to join Transfans in discussion about the items on TFW under the username starwarsprotos, which might give a hint at his history in toy collecting.  The seller was sharing photographs that were not included in the auction and during this discussion it was discovered that the G2 Menasor head didn’t appear to be in the baggy housing Motormaster.  Regardless of this missing piece, the value did not seem to be brought down.

g2-motormaster-stickers

No purple head? No problem! Photo provided by the seller.

The Transformers

The G2 Stunticons are some of the most sought-after and hard to find unicorns that are out there.  They have a sordid past and every once in a while they rear their heads and make sure we all know that we’ll never have them.  This particular auction was the first time a stickered near-production-ready version of G2 Motormaster had ever been seen.  Other versions that have been seen online were said to be painted samples and not finished toys.  Even the legendary Karl Hartman chimed in to tell a little bit of the history of these beauties.

 

The Buyer

It turns out that the winner was indeed an active fan in the community and known as HighPrime on the TFW2005 boards.  Congrats HighPrime!  According to him, he was on vacation and agreed with his wife to sell a large portion of his collection if he could spend the dough to get these guys.

 

Sorry I kind of petered out on the details of this article and just wanted to get it up.  Congrats to HighPrime and the seller!  Here’s hoping more goodies come out of the mystery bag.

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Transformers pinball inching its way to my grasp

Box for Transformers pinball

Decepticons transform and rise up!

At long last, my Transformers pinball machine is off the assembly line and headed to its final resting place. My most expensive foray into Transformerland will finally come to a close as it is delivered tomorrow, and then the gameplay videos begin.

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Japanese Dino cassettes being knocked off – the end of collecting Transformers?

Japanese Dino-cassettes being knocked off

Say it ain't so Charlie, say it ain't so...

I guess what they say is true: Nothing is sacred.

Thanks collecting, it was fun while it lasted! I’m out!

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Gold chrome Hot Rod returns from the void – $7,000 for a fake toy?

Gold Chrome G1 Hot Rod MIB

What a peculiar specimen.

A few years ago, there was a gold chromed G1 Hot Rod up for sale and the reputable seller claimed it was a genuine Takara Employee give away. Problem is, no one has ever produced any hard proof that this toy is in fact a Takara employee give away. No one is denying that the figure is indeed cool looking, but my spidey senses tell me that this is not a legitimate Takara creation. What proof do I have? None, just my gut feeling. The gold guy is back in action on Ebay right now for the starting bid of $7,000. That’s a high price to pay for something that could’ve been made rather recently in the right workshop…

There are definitely some crazy Hot Rod fans out there that would love to get this figure in their collection so maybe $7k is the magic number? Lucky 7 baby!  Peep the auction here.

Fake or real Gold Chrome G1 Hot Rod

My precious...

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Ballzac auction of the week – White 4-Star Starscream seeker knock-off $500

White 4Star Starscream seeker knock off jet

I guess this guy is seeing green, not white?

From time to time, I feel it is necessary to bring to light the worst of the worst Ebay auctions out there.  Without apology, I must highlight the sheer absurdity of some sellers of Transformers.  While we all know that some figures have incredibly high price tags, it is humorous, sad, and obnoxious when unrealistic prices are slapped onto undeserving specimens.

Take this “Holy Grail” auction for a incomplete White 4-Star seeker knock-off.  This is typically labeled as a White 4-Star Starscream.  These have been pretty rare over the years and only the acute Seeker or Knock-off collector will be hunting for something bizarre like this.  So yes, the price for a good one should be relatively high considering it is a knock-off because of the caliber of people looking for it.  Although it is a knock-off, 4-star made a very desirable slew of figures during its day due to the wild re-moldings they applied to the source material.  I still have yet to ever see one of these, black or white, in the box.  Even a silver/gray variant has been whispered down dark hallways…

Ebay auction for white 4-star seeker jet

This is why Ebay auctions need comments.

To the auction.  Our would-be seller is going for broke and asking the obscene amount of $500!  Luckily for us, he allows a best-offer button as well.  PHEW!  Thanks my lucky stars, or I might be suck drooling for this rare piece!  Am I laying on the sarcasm thick enough for you, internet?  If you need a price check, I bought a COMPLETE one of these in perfect condition for under $100 just earlier this year.  $500?  Come on toy-central, you could’ve at least thrown in the free shipping.

Blog Tales from the Holiest of Holy Grails

Lucky Draw Green Unicron of Light gallery

Transformers Micron Legend Green Unicron of Light

Colored Green because he just reeks of the cash it costs to get him!

Seibertron.com did not disappoint today with the revealed Mystery Gallery which turned out to be Lucky Draw Micron Legend Green Unicron of Light!  This is definitely a unique and rare piece and this gallery will most likely be the only place most will ever see him.

Some Collecticons may remember that Rikkomba was attempting to sell his on Ebay earlier this year.  That particular auction did not end with a buyer, but the initial price tag was £2,499.00.  So when will the next Green Unicron trade hands and how much will it cost?  Like usual, my mantra is “Only time will tell.”

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Attack of the TakaraTomy Animated exclusives!

TakaraTomy Animated Black Rodimus digibash

The face of TakaraTomy Black Animated Rodimus Minor?

With every new announcement from Takara Tomy I feel myself responding with less awe and far more shock.  With the recent announcement of a Hyper Hobby Black repaint of Animated Rodimus, the total number of exclusive figures outside of the main toyline reaches a whopping 25!  I haven’t been keeping more than a mental record over the past 10 years or so, but I’m pretty sure that makes the Japanese Animated toyline the most exclusivized toyline ever.

The worst part about all of these non-mainline toys is that none of them were released in the United States, and each one has its own set of difficulties in obtaining it.  Some of them are quite exciting, such as the elite guard edition of Prowl in white, which we never saw but always wanted.

TakaraTomy Animated EZ Seekers

Delicious AND expensive!

Also, anyone looking to make a collection out of the full Japanese Animated line will need deep pockets.  See the current list of TakaraTomy Animated exclusives below with their estimated prices.

  • Red clear EZ Convoy – $40
  • Yellow clear EZ Bumble – $40
  • Purple clear EZ Starscream – $40
  • Smoke clear EZ Prowl – $40
  • Lucky Draw Gold Chrome Deluxe Earth Mode Convoy – $300
  • Deluxe Elite Guard Prowl – $75
  • Lucky Draw Silver Chrome Deluxe Bumble – $200 (estimated)
  • Clear EZ Sunstorm – $35
  • Clear EZ Ramjet – $35
  • Clear EZ Thundercracker – $35
  • Clear EZ Skywarp – $35
  • Clear EZ Black and White Starscream – $75
  • Voyager Black Convoy – $200
  • Voyager Elite Guard Convoy – $100
  • 2010 Clear deluxe convoy and Rodimus 2-pack – $60
  • Lucky Draw Matte Deluxe Earth Mode Convoy – $100 (estimated)
  • Lucky Draw Activator Skywarp – $100 (estimated)
  • Lucky Draw clear painted EZ Convoy – $40 (estimated)
  • Lucky Draw clear painted EZ Bumble – $40 (estimated)
  • Lucky Draw clear painted EZ Prowl – $40 (estimated)
  • Lucky Draw clear painted EZ Starscream – $40 (estimated)
  • Clear deluxe Earthmode Convoy – $75 (estimated)
  • Clear Activator Convoy – $45 (estimated)
  • Activator Ramjet – $30 (estimated)
  • Black Rodimus – $50 (estimated)

The total of these estimated prices is $1870!  This doesn’t even count the mainline figures or shipping!  Realize that all these prices fluctuate on both sides of the scale since the only way for people outside of Japan to get a hold of these guys is on the secondary market.  Even if you take out the exuberant lucky draw figures, the total is still well above a grand for this plastic crack.

This trend looks like it has nothing stopping it either.  With the amount of Starcream clones and molds available to combine, we probably have only scratched the surface of expensive rare animated figures from TakaraTomy.  I’m praying that we DON’T hear anything about a Lucky Draw Starscream but I’m sure my nightmares will become reality.

TakaraTomy advertisement for clear red EZ Optimus Prime

If we had only known this was the start of something we would grow to fear...

Blog Price Check Tales from the Holiest of Holy Grails

Generation 2 ATB Megatron snags over $3500 – again!

Transformers Generation 2 Unrelease ATB MEgatron and Starscream on Yahoo Japan

Shiver me timbers!

I made a special note to wake up today. Not for my job interview, but instead to make sure I put my final bid in on a special rare item I recently found on Yahoo Japan. The alarm buzzed but I paid no heed, until I woke up to find what the alarm was for: I had missed the end time for a MIB Generation 2 ATB Megatron on Yahoo Japan!

If I were ever to get a decent price on this guy, snagging it under the radar from Yahoo Japan was my chance, but I had missed it! I rushed to my fancy new laptop and checked the auction as my heart sank. The auction had indeed ended. I scrolled down and my grief dissipated. The end price was 332,300 Yen! That’s over $3500 USD! Now I don’t feel so bad for missing the bid because there was no way I was bidding that high!

I will probably never add this special piece to my Starscream collection, for even this Collecticon has his limits. Congrats to whomever was the lucky buyer though!

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Is the Lucky Draw Transformer dead as we know it?

Lucky Draw Animated Optimus Prime promo graphic

I thought they said this was a Lucky Draw

Earlier this year we were treated to the announcement that Lucky Draw Transformers were coming back for TakaraTomy animated.  In fact, there have been more special exclusive items in Takara Tomy’s Animated line than almost any toyline in recent memory.  One of the first announced exclusives expected to become a new Lucky Draw was a gold-chromed edition of Deluxe Animated Optimus Prime.  Fast forward to this week and the figure is about to come to life but with an expected release batch of around 1,000.  Come again?

KOtoys has posted a great gallery of the figure, which also means this rare “Lucky Draw” toy has been leaked from the factory like most other figures in the past 3-4 years.  Put this all together and any seasoned collector will roll their eyes at the notion of this figure fitting into the lucky draw category.

Earlier this Summer, we were warned that the Animated Black Convoy would be of a sort of Lucky Draw status as well, but that turned out to be false.  Prices fell and individual suppliers were easily able to meet the demand for this coveted Black Prime.  Now for one of the first times, an originally advertised lucky draw figure is available on the Black market of Transformers.

KOtoys Lucky Draw Animated Optimus Prime

Who needs luck now?

So what’s the big deal?

Let’s start with what a Lucky Draw toy is.  By definition, Lucky Draw toys are toys that start with a value of zero because they are given away free via a random drawing promotion.  This is a very common practice with magazines or individual toy shops in Japan.  Some collectors fiend over lucky draw toys and will pay prices into the thousands to obtain a figure that only a handful of other humans can possibly ever own.  The point is that since there are usually under 20 of any one particular figure produced, their value is forever stratospheric and can become the cornerstone of any collection.  The Lukcy draw market is small, with the various figures passing from hand to hand of a small Transformer elite (The TF Illuminati I like to call them).

That being said, the problem lies in that the term “Lucky Draw Transformer” equates to two ideals:

1- The figure is given away via random drawing to a limited quantity

2- That limited quantity is incredibly low in order to increase the desirability of the initially zero-value figure.

Transformers Lucky Draw Silver Animated Bumblebee

Hey guys, I'm a real SILVER bug!

This second part of the equation is beginning to wane so much that a new term for these upcoming exclusives needs to be coined.  Perhaps “Non-lucky draw” or “psuedo exclusive”.  The term as it stands is obsolete.  Lucky Draw should only refer to the method by which the figures are released, and a new term would indicate the hyper rarity of the figure.

If this really is the death of the lucky draw Transformer toy as we have known it, I will quietly weep.  I love the fact that there are multi-thousand dollar toys to catch out there.  Part of what makes collecting fun is that fact that not everyone can have everything.  Even without the super-high dollar lucky draw toys, there are still other incredibly difficult-to-obtain figures coming out of Japan all the time.  Just check out all the exclusives announced recently a Chara Hobby.  It’s just maddening. X-P

New Transformer Exclusives

What a scrumptous hard-to-find bunch!