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@  Bass X0 : (24 June 2018 - 03:10 AM)

I just realised that Unsolved Mysteries has the same initials as Ultra Magnus.

@  Patchouli Kn... : (22 June 2018 - 05:18 AM)

Yeah, really... what a shitshow.

@  Pennpenn : (22 June 2018 - 04:53 AM)

This week has been an almost unmitigated damn nightmare. It can go die in some metaphorical trash fire where it belongs.

@  Nevermore : (22 June 2018 - 04:48 AM)

I feel your pain.

@  Whirl Maximus : (22 June 2018 - 04:47 AM)

This time ten years ago I was looking forward to Transformers 2.

@  Nevermore : (22 June 2018 - 01:41 AM)

There's room enough for five more cabinets.

@  Nevermore : (22 June 2018 - 01:41 AM)

Once I've settled in and earned money again, I can start with the third wall.

@  Plokatron : (21 June 2018 - 10:05 PM)

I'm still working on my comic just been trying to start up a Custom Lego shop. Won't be too long but I'm still here.

@  Dracula : (21 June 2018 - 10:02 PM)

(really though, great display)

@  Dracula : (21 June 2018 - 10:02 PM)

you're gonna have a buildup of dinosaur electrons.

@  Dracula : (21 June 2018 - 10:01 PM)

he needs his dino-breathing room! :D

@  Dracula : (21 June 2018 - 10:01 PM)

Trypticon looks a bit cramped in there, nevermore!

@  Tm_Silverclaw : (21 June 2018 - 05:54 PM)

Sad thing is we've thought more about the foam than the show writers ever did. :D

@  Nevermore : (21 June 2018 - 05:47 PM)

https://imgur.com/ky0qGVD

@  Nevermore : (21 June 2018 - 05:47 PM)

Current status of my collection room in my new, still-under-construction apartment:

@  wonko the sane? : (21 June 2018 - 05:31 PM)

Depends on whether or not the motive engines for the vehicle mode are the same as the robot mode. Cause we know they use energon for everything.

@  Bass X0 : (21 June 2018 - 05:17 PM)

I was thinking today if Transformers would carry the fuel for their alternate mode in their robot mode? They'd have to, right?

@  TheMightyMol... : (21 June 2018 - 01:28 PM)

I mean, the clear meta reason is so non-Transformers don't die horribly on their ships, but that's not as fun to speculate about.

@  wonko the sane? : (21 June 2018 - 10:43 AM)

There's also lots of chemical reactions which only precipite with oxygen.

@  Tm_Silverclaw : (21 June 2018 - 09:27 AM)

Oxygen is obviously a native gas on cybertron and also let’s the equipment “breath” so to speak.

@  Cybersnark : (21 June 2018 - 08:47 AM)

@Wonko; Yeah, but why oxygen? There are a lot of non-flammable gasses they could've used. And we've seen TFs using radio to communicate in vacuum.

@  Robowang : (21 June 2018 - 08:29 AM)

As the Cream of Wheat glugged forth from his meatus, his mind focused on only one thing: Mommy loved him so.

@  wonko the sane? : (21 June 2018 - 08:17 AM)

there's lots you can't do in vaccuum. The least of which is audio communication.

@  Cybersnark : (21 June 2018 - 08:04 AM)

Though that begs the question of why a robotic species would keep their ships pressurized with oxygen in the first place.

@  Pennpenn : (21 June 2018 - 07:29 AM)

Guess it's just me playing FTL recently. Opening a few doors out to the void is a good way to deal with fires and rude visitors.

@  Tm_Silverclaw : (21 June 2018 - 07:14 AM)

Plus it depends on what part of the ship, can’t easily vent an interior area.

@  wonko the sane? : (21 June 2018 - 06:34 AM)

depends on what's wrong. If you need to get something out and away, would also need to have started in a pressurised space to begin with. If you just want to vent extra heat: it wouldn't work as well as vaccuum is an insulator.

@  Pennpenn : (21 June 2018 - 03:12 AM)

If they're in space wouldn't it make more sense just to vent the area affected to vacuum?

@  Tm_Silverclaw : (20 June 2018 - 07:16 PM)

I mean the foam was dangerous, but in space they probably put out the fires, then wore the equivalent of a hazmat suit to clean up.

@  TheMightyMol... : (20 June 2018 - 04:38 PM)

Only on special occassions.

@  Paladin : (20 June 2018 - 03:50 PM)

you don't?

@  TheMightyMol... : (20 June 2018 - 02:17 PM)

I mean, we don't usually use asbestos on our souls.....

@  Tm_Silverclaw : (20 June 2018 - 10:11 AM)

*looks at asbestos" Yep... Cause we've never used something harmful as a fire retardant. x.x;

@  unluckiness : (20 June 2018 - 06:32 AM)

fire retardant foam is so powerful it can extinguish even sparks

@  Pennpenn : (20 June 2018 - 05:23 AM)

I mean, this is a species that can be disabled (possibly fatally after a while?) by flame retardant foam, so yeah.

@  TheMightyMol... : (20 June 2018 - 01:28 AM)

Transformers are exactly as resilient as the plot needs them to be, so who knows, it could be lethal today.

@  RichardT1977 : (19 June 2018 - 08:50 PM)

Which is why Marvel Megatron was interested in Dr. Biggles-Jones' railgun design and had it grafted onto his G2 tank mode.

@  wonko the sane? : (19 June 2018 - 08:43 PM)

Doesn't really matter what transformers are made of. If you send a 10 pound ball of metal flying at a good enough velocity, you will do damage.

@  Soft Snow : (19 June 2018 - 05:53 PM)

A regular cannon that shoots cannon balls and does nothing to other transformers because they are robots but would put a mean whole in the side of your wooden boat...

@  Shiny Chariot : (19 June 2018 - 05:44 PM)

wtf did the shoutbox do to my emoji

@  Shiny Chariot : (19 June 2018 - 05:44 PM)

also @ patchy its whatever your heart desires 😘

@  Shiny Chariot : (19 June 2018 - 05:44 PM)

shes not a drill but she is a grill

@  ▲ndrusi : (19 June 2018 - 05:40 PM)

POTP CINDERSAUR IS A GIRL THIS IS NOT A DRILL

@  Patchouli Kn... : (19 June 2018 - 05:18 PM)

A fusion cannon, or just a regular cannon?

@  Shiny Chariot : (19 June 2018 - 05:04 PM)

megatron but he turns into a ford fusion with a cannon badly welded onto the roof

@  TheMightyMol... : (19 June 2018 - 02:22 PM)

My Little Fusion Cannon: Friendship Through Tyranny.

@  NotVeryKnightly : (19 June 2018 - 02:01 PM)

was that supposed to sound sexual

@  wonko the sane? : (19 June 2018 - 01:55 PM)

I'm pretty sure that megatrons cannon is his best friend, so that friendship is magic stuff won't work.

@  MEDdMI : (19 June 2018 - 01:16 PM)

And then the magic ponies force everyone to be friends FOREVERRRRRRR

@  wonko the sane? : (19 June 2018 - 12:06 PM)

Or... megatron just goes to war against skynet cause he can't stand the competition.


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Walmart getting first dibs? Not allowing preorders for other stores until they got it first?


50 replies to this topic

#1 Nevermore

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Posted 07 October 2017 - 05:45 AM

So there's been a rumor floating around at a certain other board, which matches certain bizarre patterns observed at various online retailers and is further corroborated by the former (?) owner of an online store who keeps complaining about how frustrating dealing with Hasbro was.

The classic line of argument when it comes to toy retail is that "Hasbro cannot force retailers to stock toys". So basically, Hasbro produces the toys, solicits them to retailers, and everything from that point on is up to the retailers. Hasbro ships out the toys and has no control of distribution beyond that.


But in the past two or so years, there have been numerous incidents where toys that had been announced by Hasbro wouldn't be listed for preorder by any online retailers for months to come. Any argument that it's all up to retailers goes out of the window when retailers who want to order new toys cannot do so because there are no solicits yet. These toys would then sometimes come out in Asia, might be listed by online retailers based out of Asia, but still, the "major" online retailers like Amazon, BBTS, Entertainment Earth, ToyWiz or TFSource wouldn't put up listings for these figures up until a specific date.

Particularly bizarre variations of this pattern were:
- Online retailers would put up instant "in stock" listings for general retail waves, meaning they had already received shipments of these figures but were not allowed to list them on their public website. So no preorders. And I'm not talking about "wave 1 of a movie line with a street date". I'm talking about stuff like "wave 4/5/6 in a Generations sub-line or an RID assortment".
- Online retailers would collectively put up their preorder listings after those waves had already been found at brick and mortar retail, so any advantage online retailers might have over brick and mortar stores in terms of early availability would be out of the window.

Now, the rumor, corroborated by this former online store owner, is that Walmart had specifically given Hasbro orders that Walmart absolutely has to get first dibs on new Transformers product before anyone else was to be allowed to put up a public listing. And if Walmart has no room for these new toys, then that's too bad because it means the online retailers have to wait in line.

This certainly fits in with the recent news story that Hasbro and Mattel are supporting TRU despite its financial problems because the alternative would be that Walmart and Amazon get to dominate the market even more than they already do.

I know that brick and mortar retail has trouble competing with the (seemingly) endless storage space of online retailers, and I agree that online retailers have several unfair advantages over physical stores, but "you don't get new stuff before we do" can't be the answer either, since that would be an unfair advantage of its own, especially if it's really just one store doing it.

Is any of this grounded in reality? Is it just scuttlebutt? If so, then why do the aforementioned weird-ass preorder policies with instant "in stock" listings and brick and mortar stores getting new toys before Amazon, BBTS or EE can even start taking preorders happen?

Edited by Nevermore, 07 October 2017 - 05:54 AM.

"'[Foreigners] at least need to be able to speak proper German.' Okay, what the hell is that supposed to be? Proper German'? Where do they speak that? Have you ever been there? Are you German? Can you engage in a conversation in a Swabian pub? Most people from Cologne already fail at asking for directions in the Eifel region."
- Volker Pispers, German comedian

#2 SHIELD Agent 47

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Posted 07 October 2017 - 05:48 AM

(I am not a lawyer.)

This sounds disturbingly anticompetitive especially for a U.S.-based company, but frankly the more I think about it, the more plausible it seems.
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#3 NotVeryKnightly

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Posted 07 October 2017 - 05:54 AM

If it really is Walmart specifically behind this, then "[manufacturer] cannot force retailers" still holds true.

#4 Nevermore

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Posted 07 October 2017 - 05:57 AM

If it really is Walmart specifically behind this, then "[manufacturer] cannot force retailers" still holds true.


No, but in that case Hasbro won't let them (i.e. Walmart's competition) do it either. There's a difference between "I can do it if I want but I don't have to" and "I would like to do it but I'm not allowed to".

Edited by Nevermore, 07 October 2017 - 05:58 AM.

"'[Foreigners] at least need to be able to speak proper German.' Okay, what the hell is that supposed to be? Proper German'? Where do they speak that? Have you ever been there? Are you German? Can you engage in a conversation in a Swabian pub? Most people from Cologne already fail at asking for directions in the Eifel region."
- Volker Pispers, German comedian

#5 MrBlud

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Posted 07 October 2017 - 06:41 AM

It would certainly fit with Walmart's ethos.

 

And it's not like Hasbro can really say no for fear of Walmart just refusing to stock Transformers.


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#6 NightViper

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Posted 07 October 2017 - 06:57 AM

*Grumble grumble* Walmart already not stocking new Transformers for the past 4 or 5 months *grumble grumble*.

 

While I can't say anything in regards to Walmart specifically, I do know that Hasbro have been making deals with particular retailers for "first dibs". I heard it through other retailers not getting "dibs" and were subsequently complaining about it. 

 

We probably will see more online stores importing special items (like the Clone two-pack being sold way back in June/July but just now reaching the North America market through official channels) from the Asia and other markets rather than wait for orders from Hasbro US.



#7 LV!

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Posted 07 October 2017 - 08:50 AM

I don't know how Hasbro could have any way of knowing Walmart had toys in their retail stores and therefore it was okay to let other people sell them. I don't know how Walmart could have any way of knowing Walmart had toys in their retail stores and therefore they didn't have to get mad that other people were putting them up for sale. Furthermore, I can't imagine Walmart caring enough to pay someone to track dozens of price points/SKUs of product, both in their own stores and on every online store, to make sure no one was selling them first.

 

This doesn't sound like something without a kernel of truth to it, but whatever that truth is ("online retailers have been given on-sale dates for product they already received" is a verifiable fact) this is clearly the Internet Conspiracy Engine version of it.



#8 NightViper

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Posted 07 October 2017 - 09:11 AM

I doubt it would be relying on any amount of tracking. It'd be more "don't sell this assortment until Walmart has a CHANCE to stock them" and hoping the toys make it to brick and mortar before the online street date.

So creating an extra buffered lead time rather than watching the actual progression of toys getting to stores. Which as you say is kinda impossible logistics.


Edited by NightViper, 07 October 2017 - 09:48 AM.


#9 Shrug

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Posted 07 October 2017 - 09:18 AM

Yeah, I doubt it's any kind of stock tracking. It's definitely more Walmart has X number of weeks to sell an item before other retailers get to.

I'm pretty sure we saw it in action with TLK Hot Rod. (and not just Walmart backing out of that exclusive deal) Walmart was so incredibly slow to get their own timed exclusive to customers that other retailers started listing it on their websites the same day Walmart actuslly started selling them online.

#10 LV!

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Posted 07 October 2017 - 10:26 AM

It is also difficult for me to believe Walmart would make these broad declarations about multiple sizes of TF product because it seems clear they have neither the capability nor the interest to make sure product is on shelves by a certain date, and they don't make most of it available online, so how would they ever think they'd benefit from a capricious "you can't sell this until we've had a chance" unless that date was, like, months later than product starting shipping from Hasbro?

 

I guess you'd have to ask retailers what the greatest time between their reception of stock and clearance to sell it has been - which I doubt anyone is allowed to say.



#11 MrBlud

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Posted 07 October 2017 - 01:04 PM

They could just be throwing their weight around.

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#12 NICK TYRANNO

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Posted 07 October 2017 - 01:51 PM

Yeah, it has nothing to do with what makes sense.

They do not make sense.
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#13 LV!

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Posted 07 October 2017 - 02:35 PM

I guess if your belief in whether someone is doing something doesn't have to make sense, it's difficult to construct an argument against.



#14 The Predaking

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Posted 07 October 2017 - 02:40 PM

It would certainly fit with Walmart's ethos.

 

And it's not like Hasbro can really say no for fear of Walmart just refusing to stock Transformers.

 

Are you sure that they aren't doing that now? 

 

 

They have those crappy transforming cars taking up more shelf space than Titan Returns has at my local stores. 


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#15 Superomegaprime

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Posted 07 October 2017 - 04:25 PM

They could just be throwing their weight around.

 

Sounds like that, also its pretty much cooperate greed with the bottomline being how much $$$ they can make.


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#16 MrBlud

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Posted 07 October 2017 - 05:35 PM

I guess if your belief in whether someone is doing something doesn't have to make sense, it's difficult to construct an argument against.


Walmart has a well documented history of bullying suppliers.

Granted, that's usually for some kind of direct financial benefit that seems absent here but I don't think it's wholly unbelievable either.

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#17 Blacknife

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Posted 07 October 2017 - 07:44 PM

At least here in Nebraska, someone could switch out Target for Walmart.
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#18 Dake

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Posted 07 October 2017 - 08:03 PM

 

I guess if your belief in whether someone is doing something doesn't have to make sense, it's difficult to construct an argument against.


Walmart has a well documented history of bullying suppliers.

Granted, that's usually for some kind of direct financial benefit that seems absent here but I don't think it's wholly unbelievable either.

 

 

This was my first thought. They regularly strongarm suppliers to obtain lower costs, better deals or exclusive privileges. It's the blessing and the curse for sure.

 

In this case, the financial benefit (if they can get their heads out of their collective arsses and actually distribute something) is they get to earn the earliest sales to the market and theoretically by the time something shows up at a competitor it's a peg-warmer.


 
 
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#19 NICK TYRANNO

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Posted 07 October 2017 - 11:10 PM

They are still late to the game with online sales. I could easily see this as an attempt to stab back at every online seller they can.

Then again, that's if it has to make sense. But it doesn't.
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#20 Nevermore

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Posted 08 October 2017 - 05:16 AM

They are still late to the game with online sales. I could easily see this as an attempt to stab back at every online seller they can.

Then again, that's if it has to make sense. But it doesn't.

When I first came across this rumor, I took it as a butthurt "okay, so we suck when it comes to stocking toys. What can we do to prevent others from beating us to the punch?", i.e. "improving takes real effort and competence, so let's instead artificially force the competition down to our level".

Edited by Nevermore, 08 October 2017 - 05:18 AM.

"'[Foreigners] at least need to be able to speak proper German.' Okay, what the hell is that supposed to be? Proper German'? Where do they speak that? Have you ever been there? Are you German? Can you engage in a conversation in a Swabian pub? Most people from Cologne already fail at asking for directions in the Eifel region."
- Volker Pispers, German comedian



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