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After putting 2 other figures in my basket I realised if I found Shakespeare I would be spending £7.50 on 3 figs... And just couldn't stomach that, so put them back.
When the smallest castle set has 4 figs plus a small build for under £10 I don't know how they can justify the increase for single figs.
£5 will buy you two Movie CMF figs or two figs and a small build in the smaller impulse type sets, and I don't buy them unless they're discounted.
Without a WHS voucher for £5 off £12, I won't be buying any until they are 33-50% off either. Even 33% off / 3 for 2 they are still quite expensive if you have been used to picking them up at about £1.20 or so each.
However, the S12 CMF line (presumably unlicensed if it is a continuation of the numbered series) is also going up in price.
If they do this, they are aiming at just the intersection between collectors and gamers. They may sell more to gamers that don't really want the figs or more to collectors that don't want the game. But they are also risking alienating both groups too.
I wonder if some reasoning for the increase might be to offset theft? I would imagine a number of CMF packets slip into pockets and walk out the door.
That said, Lego also recognizes that people will pay more so why not charge more? Look at Amazon where figures go for many times the MSRP even when they're still in stores. If people are willing to pay that much online, they'll pay it to Lego too.
My guess as they see this like sky landers or anything else where you buy a character and then you can get it into a game. They probably feel, and I presume they did market testing, that kids will pay an extra $1 for that.. And really that is who they are aiming for as opposed to that small imtersection. In addition, since Mr Gold, I will say that it has been harder for me to find these minifigs at the stores. Before they used to sit forever. Now, they seem to fly off the shelves, got restocked, and disappear again. I presume they think AFOLs will still buy some still.
Considering the flop of their last game, I have to think the did do a bit more market testing on this concept.
Personally, I do not care for the change.
I used to be a major collector of the things but put full brakes on it after realizing just how many of the ones I have that I don't even need or want and how much money I wasted on them. I got 2 series 11(scarecrow and scientist) only b/c I kind of wanted them and figured the aftermarket prices could get ugly. I'll admit I want a WW wyldstyle but If I get one, i'll have to be EXTREMELLY careful not to go wild buying series 12
All the price tag increase will do is turn my off them for good. Why would I want to pay 4 bucks a go on a single figure plus a code for a game that I may or may not even want to play when I could get a lego friends animal set for the same price and it has parts I actually need or for a buck more I could get a really cool mixel set that has cute characters and awesome parts?
That's a crazy price increase.
That said I think complaining about them on the internet is fairly silly.
@kbenjes A price increase without any context is essentially useless. I can talk about how soda used to be a nickle. .05 to 1.25! now that is a crazy price increase ;p
Without context of time and the cost of other goods prices are just numbers without a easy identified value.
No one gets to corner the "this stinks" market. The trough is plenty big so let's just agree to share.
Some more food for thought, apparently Funcom Game Designers had some input on the minifig designs for Series 12. The game is shown to have Pirate, Castle, Mythology and Space elements. If this pans out into S12 (which I expect it to) it could easily be the best CMF to date, for AFOL's
If they are significantly changing direction with the CMF and using them as a way to promote online gaming, I don't really understand why they are continuing the numbering scheme. If these are now going to be used to get kids playing the MMO, then why not start the numbering again. No longer call them CMF S12, but MMO Series 1.
Plus, if the only difference is a code inside the package... Then it is not like the product is significantly changing. I also presume they had to have market tested the two ideas...keeping the name the same or changing it.
It may lead to confusion when someone buys Series 12 for using on the MMO, then wants codes for Series 1-11.
So to the point: The RRP for the initial two series CMFs (Series 1 and Series 2) was $1.99. Then Series 3 came along and the price increased by 50% to $2.99. Now the Simpsons CMFs are out at $3.99 with a 33.33% increase over The Lego Movie CMFs...the excuse for the increase being the additional licensing fees charged by Fox (or whoever).
What are the odds that TLG (who recently killed discounts for exclusive sets in the US) will let the RRP for CMFs slide back to $2.99 on future Series CMFs? Assuming they continue to increase the cost of CMFs by huge percentages, at what point does the consumer push back?
Proverbially speaking, I view the CMF price increases as another TLG "canary in the coal mine" indicating that they are trying to "get blood out of a stone (e.g., more money from an empty wallet)." In the spirit of May the 4th and to coin Han Solo before the trash compactor walls started closing in (or TLG's pincers if you prefer): "I got a bad feeling about this..."
Hopefully it doesn't become the standard /:
On the one hand I like to purchase expensive Lego sets; on the other hand I have to purchase food, clothing, and gas for the cars, pay the mortgage, utility bills, and car and house insurance, pay college, secondary and primary school costs, yada, yada, yada...all of which are also going up.
Hmmm....Perhaps the powers that be at TLG believe this would be a difficult choice for the majority of their customers?
I stopped at second series when I noticed the quality of CMF was different than the regular minifig found in sets. They have probably improved the quality since then but I am not willing to find out. Instead of playing $4.00 for a random minifig, I rather use that money to purchase a set. I remember when Lego used to be about the bricks.
Though I kinda find the 3.99 from here on out a bit dubious to be honest. I could see it for the licensed figures, but IF LEGO really tries this then they are crazy IMO.
They keep turning up the temperature by increasing the cost and Ill tell you at 3.99 I see many people jumping out of the pot. I think LEGO will see a big drop in demand for the figures. I mean a Minifigure really costs about 3 bucks retail. The whole idea initially was to have a neat little pack for kids to grab at the counter, problem is at 3.99 that is just a blatant money grab. Heck polybags are about 4-5 and you at least get the figure AND some sort of build.
You may see people go after certain ones, but at 3.99 per pack i doubt you will see people buying them at the rate they do now, especially when boxes only have 2 whole sets in them. It will probably help those with wholesaler licenses though that get them for much cheaper than the retail.
Between this and their lessening promos (I mean two weeks for double points?!), 'quieter' sales, higher costs for licensed sets, seemingly simpler designs for some of their sets (bigger 'one pieces' and lesser details; not Creator 'expert' anyway), Poor QnA of their sets and parts (another set missing parts out of the box? Parts cracking that are new) and ban on Exclusive sales in the US, I see LEGO hitting a critical point where we may see the bad old days of the late 90's again.
People will scoff at that, but again I see LEGO getting a bit too big for their britches and there are some parallels to what caused the late 90's meltdown.
Distribution everywhere (where it seems much of the new product seems to find its way out the backdoor)... Poor QnA on top of that, and branching off into all of these little niche markets with their accessories that really can't make them much ( I would imagine). Higher prices for lesser quality sets. The problem is they do not have another 'Star Wars' to save their bacon if it goes bad.
I think all it takes is one major license loss (Like Disney deciding to pull away) and LEGO will be scrambling again.
Has it been confirmed in the US that the Simpsons CMF are $3.99? Sorry I have no interest in those figs and haven't kept up with the news around them...