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I see that #10223 is back to call for availability, having been sold out. Whether this happens with #10225 who knows, but the end is nigh.
Actually probably a half to 3/4 of the next year as speculators will likely start their buying frenzy by middle of the year on both.
But in the end of the day I have no doubt there are plenty of people out there using wholesaler lists, or other distribution order lists, for the next year to see what is and is not on it, and making very educated guesses. That is not going to change.
So the old rule applies: If you REALLY want a set, get it when it comes out to avoid missing on it later.
It always seems that those who realize too late that they missed out on a particular set (or two in this case) are the first to say that it isn't retiring...that Lego will be making more next month or next year. It's always possible, but seldom probable. To add to @madforLEGO's comment above, exclusive sets like TH and GE are not likely to ever be discounted by LEGO, so you might as well get them if you have the funds. Better yet, grab them when double (or perhaps triple) VIP points are available, or even when there's a cool free set that TLG is giving away. That's the best you can hope for these days. The possibility once existed for better deals, but not any more. WYSIWYG!
Almost nobody compared to today.
The "Legend Line" seemed to be the only product line people come up with. Maybe Lego needs to put more thoughts behind a rerelease, like for instance doing a 1:1 release and not alter their the set in any way. Every company who owns molds of any sort of thing stores them. Look at playmobil they use and re-use old molds all the time and they somehow manage to produce exactly the same part. People are saying it is not possible, can't do it, won't sell,... what is just not true.
Why not use (for once) the internet, the one medium that Lego profits so much of. Look at "Kick-Starter", if people place for example a given amount of orders say 10, 20, 30.0000 copies of an old set. Lego will produce it. It also would work with some special parts for example.
It wouldn't be hard, but for some unknown official reason - Lego loves their resellers and much more the aftermarket.
They would not re-release CC with the original panels. They just wouldnt. The new ones have side supports for durability. IT's not gonna happen.
IF TLG EVER did an anniversary CC or GG set, it would be with updated parts, and a slightly different build. CC might even be smaller, with a fully fleshed out interior.....*IF.
There are plenty of ideas to explore, and it doesnt seem like these will be rehashed.
By 2001, there were 20,000 active listings for LEGO at any given time. Yes, that's an order of magnitude from what it is today, but it's not insignificant. There were full time resellers and hobby resellers just like there are today. Not only was Bricklink around, but there were competing sites.
LUGnet had 2500 registered members by 2004, and that means people ponied up $10(?) primarily so they could inventory their collection. We shared information on collecting and sales, such as unpublicized weekly phone-in specials from [email protected] and occasional deals posted by LEGO employees, the most memorable when Jack McKee posted about finding a pile of 8-year-old 8880 Super Cars in the warehouse: http://news.lugnet.com/lego/direct/?n=5245
Yes, there has been explosive growth, but TLG's product portfolio and production capacity has grown in lockstep, and it could be easily argued that they provided the cause and are not simply stumbling into benefiting from the effect.
About internet usage 10 years ago. Amazon had a turnover of 830 Million in 2002, by 2013 amazon had a turnover of 75 billion. So compared to this sum of today I do think 830 Million from 2002 is insignificant, about 1.1%. And the same happened with forums and a lot of other sites. The ebay user number and use changed in the same way. Lego’s success also comes down to AFOLs, they did contribute to this unseen success, not in an immense huge way, but still it also was because of you guys in here (AFOLs). Therefore I would like to see more people having access to fair priced older sets and that Lego gets this money not some broker or “horter”. Today more and more broker come into the Hobby, not because they like Lego - no, you can make money with it.
Why is it so important to measure a collection on its value? To me it wouldn’t matter if for example my Emerald Night trains would fall in value today – I mean who cares? Unfortunately now you need to become a horter to be able to finance the older lego sets, otherwise it’s most of the time not possible. And this is my essential complain, do you really need be reseller/broker/horter to finance older sets and therefore throw a lot of money at those brokers instead at Lego – a perfect breeding ground for a bubble.
In this case have to agree with you rocoa, maybe Lego has provided the cause. But I doubt it yields a long term success to produce a broker commodity and support that. As longs as the value goes up and up everybody is in the boat, if it goes down you see them running in masses.
I'm still not sure if a bubble would be good or bad for lego fans. If my collection halved in value, it wouldn't bother me since most of it is not for sale. Sure, I have some sets put away and if they decrease in value I'd either make a loss, or more likely just open them up and keep them. However, the loss I'd make there would also mean I could buy other sets I missed out on cheaper. Longer term, the implications are not clear. Would casual sellers jump ship and not even consider buying up sale items - which again would be good for lego fans - but not so good for lego if large amounts of stock went unsold.
I don't really see a bubble occurring though, not in the traditional sense. I doubt older sets (like the EN you mention) will go down in value. However, I do believe that in future sets will not rise as much as they have in the past due to saturation of sellers. Although some sets will continue to rise very nicely, others will fall as they have done in the past.
And so the way forward for sellers is to pick sets carefully, or pick up sets at a massive discount. Which is pretty much as it has always been.
PS. It is not important to measure a collection on its value. There are many ways - number of bricks, range of bricks, number of minifigs, etc. Collectors will measure their collection different to resellers though. Given this is the reseller thread, financial value is the correct measure of a collection (or stock as it may also be called).
(I say all this as someone who owns 3 unopened sets which I might one day trade or might one day open! Really not a seller/investor at all.)
*By casual resellers in this instance I mean those with no real interest in Lego apart from hearing that it sells well and buying up anything marked as SALE prices to sell on without the deeper market knowledge from collecting.
My point was directed at the common refrain of how "the game has changed" or "it's not like the good old days" when the speaker's time reference itself is relatively small. "Well, Y will be different than X, because nobody was really collecting/buying/thinking about X back then." But the X only stretches back to 2010 (when USC MF, Green Grocer, Grand Carousel, Taj Mahal retired) or 2009 (Cafe Corner, Market Street) or 2007 ( first wave Batman sets) and so on.
As I said, the hobby and market HAS evolved and matured, but I find the proverb "the more things change, the more they stay the same" very true. LEGO sets have always been released in waves that retired. LEGO was seen as a collectible and valuable toy long, long ago. There has been a secondary market for LEGO for decades.
To talk to your point specifically, when the Legends were released, TLG actually DID take to the internet and AFOL community to conduct fan voting to decide which sets would be released. Perhaps you didn't know that? http://news.lugnet.com/lego/direct/?n=4848 Monetary value is a quantifiable measure of how desirable something is. You seem to view that LEGO is desirable, but dislike the measurement of it.
Perhaps you might not flinch much if your Emerald Night trains dropped in value, but would you collect more LEGO trains if you knew they would all depreciate to nothing? At some point you would have to reconsider.
LEGO is born expensive from day one. If LEGO had little perceived value it would not be a collectible and people would not buy as much as they do. TLG would not have become the behemoth they have and be able to continually reinvest in element design, set design, production capacity, quality control, etc.
I would be a bit more concerned that Arkham Asylum is going before Ewok Village, but that is just my opinion.
I don't that yet and keep putting it off.
The reason why people bring up Legends is because it was a LINE of redone sets that was well hyped too, and it appears it did not sell well (Metroliners for 75 USD anyone?)
-They could not remake EVERY part for part for Legends, as the pigtail hair was no longer made, nor was the cypress tree if memory servers me correctly. The large Train rail insert pieces, used for the crane and 'LEGOLAND' sticker in the original, were no longer made, so they had to STAMP the sticker onto a bunch of 1x8 tiles.
As for other sets, lets look at those:
Cafe Corner: So 'great' at the time it was on constant price cut to 120 USD instead its 140 price at retailers like Amazon and walmart.
Market street was 90 USD.. 90 DOLLARS. Yeah I know it sounds like nothing now, BUT at 90 USD it did not sell well, which is one reason why it is sought after now and was hard to find in NIB form even shortly after it was EOL.
Emerald night was discounted to 75 USD; was always on sale somewhere.
Grand Carousel: Again expensive when new, at 250 USD. Rarely on sale and even then not cheap= why it is expensive now.
Going back Farther, Monorails were not cheap folks, even in the early 90's. I think saw a TRU price tag showing 199 USD for #6991.
Ask yourself honestly, would you pay another 40-50 USD (or more) on these sets new now? I'm guessing the majority of folks outside of this forum would say 'no', or 'I would want it but too expensive; not buying'. Especially if there is also no discount on these in 'exclusives' in the US.
Hindsight is 20/20. However, even with hindsight a line must be drawn somewhere. LEGO typically runs a line for 2-2 1/2 years, they got very generous with exclusives like the mods and now DS and VW, but will it be enough to placate those who lament they missed it? Probably not.
And do not compare what I am saying with the whole RI or 41999 debacle by LEGO. That is apples and oranges.
But I do pick up some on-the-fence sets when I think there is nevertheless resale value. With this one, I am just not sure it will see huge increases. And it is such a big darn box which makes it hard and expensive to ship. I'm thinking it would sit in my attic like IS until I finally decide to pull the trigger and then realize the return really isn't worth it.
Just my opinion