Opinion – BAF vs Deluxe

I posted this on my social media site and JayC was kind enough to post it on his site for people to read. A much better edited version to be sure. (Read and comment here).

Here is it for anyone who wants to read it:

“Many people seem to still be debating whether Hasbro should get rid of the Build-A-Figure (BAF) concept and just release larger figures as Deluxe ones. Now I don’t want to really make this about rising prices which I think we can all agree on suck. I am not saying that doesn’t play some role in this, but I think Hasbro has been doing something different with the BAF in recent years. At least when it comes to the comic based ones. Instead of releasing big name characters as BAFs like Rhino, War Machine or Thanos, they have been doing more obscure characters that would probably never sell that well as Deluxe releases. Just look at the last few BAFs they have done. Bonebreaker, Controller, Armadillo, Mr. Hyde, Stilt Man and Ursa Major. Other than long-time comic book readers, many people probably have never heard of or know little about these guys. Because they are less known, I think less people are interested in getting them. Now it’s true that the original concept behind the BAF when Toy Biz started doing them was to entice more people to buy all the figures in a wave in order to get the more sought after Build-A-Figure. My theory does somewhat contradict that and Hasbro is still doing less known characters as single releases such as Frog-Man and White Rabbit, but look what happened when they did that Compound Hulk figure as a Deluxe. It was recently put on clearance for under $15 by Walmart. I just don’t think the less obscure characters will work well being sold as one-off deluxe figures.

As for the Deluxe, I think it works great for the more well known characters. The recent Rhino that was originally done as a BAF has seemingly been quit popular as was the comic based Thanos they did.

This theory of mine doesn’t really apply to MCU based BAF and Deluxe figures. The characters picked by Hasbro for those seem to be based more on studio direction. As for how well they sell, well that seems to be based on how well they are perceived in the movies they appear in. The recent Rintrah BAF from Multiverse of Madness didn’t seem terribly popular with many collectors but he only ended up with a few minutes of screen time in the movie. The Deluxe Eternals Kro figure also seemed to sell poorly but I think thats because that movie wasn’t well received in general by many. If you take someone like Thanos who has been released as both a BAF and Deluxe figure, that one seems much more popular. Movie marketing is a powerful thing and shouldn’t be underestimated in how it can influence the popularity or unpopularity of a figure.

So in finishing, my theory is that Hasbro is leaving the BAF for the more obscure type characters and saving the Deluxe releases for the more well-known characters. Let me know what you think and whether you want to see the BAF concept go away completly or want to see less in the way of Deluxe type releases.”

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