Questions for Hasbro on TF design?

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Questions for Hasbro on TF design?

Postby JediTricks » Fri May 02, 2014 11:14 pm

There may be an opportunity soon to talk with Hasbro about TF design, any questions?
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Re: Questions for Hasbro on TF design?

Postby Almighty Unicron » Sat May 03, 2014 5:18 am

Oh I literally have a list a mile long for these. I'm gonna limit it to just 5 questions though:

1) If you could sum up the design paradigms of different eras in transformers into a few words, what would you call them?

2) When a gimmick is integral to a toy or line, is the toy designed around the gimmick or vice-versa? Do you sit down and say "okay, I've got an idea for an automorph that lets the legs come out this way, let's design a guy around it" or "I want a cannon to flip out like so when you plug a minicon onto his back"?

3) Transformers seems to target children and adult collectors, at least for the moment. Are there any plans to target the adolescent market in some capacity?

4) What is one alt-mode you've always wanted to see as a transformer? (if possible, I'd love to see a poll of various designers)

5) What are some design paradigms that differ between Hasbro and Takara-Tomy?
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Re: Questions for Hasbro on TF design?

Postby Shockwave » Sat May 03, 2014 9:16 am

I'd like to know if there are any guidelines regarding the use of fake parts as robot parts (Example would be the fuax car hood chest on the recent Generations Bumblebee/Goldfire figures).
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Re: Questions for Hasbro on TF design?

Postby BWprowl » Sat May 03, 2014 2:25 pm

Shockwave wrote:I'd like to know if there are any guidelines regarding the use of fake parts as robot parts (Example would be the fuax car hood chest on the recent Generations Bumblebee/Goldfire figures).

I'd imagine it has to do with making a toy of pre-existing design versus coming up with something totally new as a toy first. Generations Bumblebee was based on the IDW comic design that had already been around for a year or so, which incidentally hadn't been designed with proportions that actually worked as a toy (at least easily) in mind. The Movie and WfC/FoC designs are much the same way.

I want to know if the design team gets more enjoyment out of making new toys of pre-existing characters (your Bumblebees and Optimuses) or doing new things that haven't had a go before (your Ripclaws and Thundertrons and Windblades).

Also curious how the knowledge that these days, Hasbro is likely to order a design get another go-around in a few years (EG: Jetfire) factors into the designers' motivation to make the toys 'good' or get things 'right'.
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Re: Questions for Hasbro on TF design?

Postby Tigermegatron » Sat May 03, 2014 9:29 pm

Here's my questions...

1- At the 2014 Hasbro NYC Toyfair,Hasbro Hinted at a possible 5 planned Leader sized Generations toys for the 2014 to 2015 time frame. For this leader class,are figures like the following planned Sixshot,Shockwave,Galvatron,Rodimus Prime,Masterforce Overlord.

2- Is their another Titan new mold planned for the Generations toy line. Like Fortress Maximus,Scorponok,Trypticon or Omega Supreme.

3- Anymore combiners new molds planned for the Generations toy line?

4- Why doesn't the Generations toy line create more 1980's animal based Transformers.

5- Are their any plans to create newer toys for some Classics Generations toys that got made in the wrong size. Like creating a newer generations voyager sized toy for 1985 Astrotrain. Ultra sized toy for 1988 Pretender Thunderwing. Leader sized Galvatron toy. Voyager sized seeker mold. Ultra Sized toys for G-1 Cyclonus & G-1 Scourge.
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Re: Questions for Hasbro on TF design?

Postby Sparky Prime » Sun May 04, 2014 12:47 pm

There's a few things I'd like to ask about... I'm most curious about how much time they put into each step of the design process. I understand it takes them about a year to fully develop a figure, longer for triple changers... But I'd like to know about how long they're working on the concept design sketching, prototype development and so on. Have they ever had to go back to the drawing board with a figure or do they continue to press forward trying to iron out issues that may arise along the way? Do they find it easier to develop original designs or to work with something they need to make the figure look like as with the movie figures?
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Re: Questions for Hasbro on TF design?

Postby Tigermegatron » Sun May 04, 2014 3:06 pm

I suspose i'd like to know the following questions.....

1- How hard is it for Hasbro to upsize or downsize a existing TF character mold. Is it a easy process to do or extremely hard to do.
I ask the question because of the Energon Megatron ultra & leader sized toy molds? I'm sure most fans & kids would like to see this happen much more.

2- When doing a extensive resculpt or simple newer retooled head. How hard or easy is this to do?
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Re: Questions for Hasbro on TF design?

Postby JediTricks » Sun May 04, 2014 7:41 pm

Here's one I'll add of my own...

Were numbers on Fall of Cybertron Bruticus figures good enough that we might see more combiners in the Generations line, with or without current media support? If so, with the limitation of combiners being only deluxes lifted, would a Voyager-class center figure with deluxe limb figures ever be likely?

Almighty Unicron wrote:Oh I literally have a list a mile long for these. I'm gonna limit it to just 5 questions though:
Feel free to continue beyond 5, a question's merit is all I care about.

1) If you could sum up the design paradigms of different eras in transformers into a few words, what would you call them?
I'm not sure I'm going to attempt this question because the current team really hasn't been around long enough to comment from a place of authority. This is a fairly new group with new direct management, so they'd be commenting on a history lesson they got when they took the job, not from experience. Unlike the Star Wars team, there is no "old guard" in the Transformers team. Does that make sense, or am I missing what you're looking for?

2) When a gimmick is integral to a toy or line, is the toy designed around the gimmick or vice-versa? Do you sit down and say "okay, I've got an idea for an automorph that lets the legs come out this way, let's design a guy around it" or "I want a cannon to flip out like so when you plug a minicon onto his back"?
This I may ask. I feel like it may have been covered in previous materials, but I don't remember the answer, so I'll just reword it a little for clarity:
When a gimmick is integral to a toy or line, is the toy designed around the gimmick or vice-versa? Do you sit down and say "I've got an idea for an automorph that reveals the legs, let's design a guy around it", or is it "This guy, I want a cannon to flip out when you plug a minicon onto his back"?

3) Transformers seems to target children and adult collectors, at least for the moment. Are there any plans to target the adolescent market in some capacity?
How would that be different from having Rescue Bots, Prime, and Generations type of line design? Where do you feel they're not focusing enough on the tweeners?

4) What is one alt-mode you've always wanted to see as a transformer? (if possible, I'd love to see a poll of various designers)
An easy one, but I'll keep it on the list.

5) What are some design paradigms that differ between Hasbro and Takara-Tomy?
This seems a little vague, could you elaborate or explain? Are you asking about why Takara-tomy does stuff like Transformers: Go! with its unique aesthetics and designs that is so diferent from Hasbro's lines? Here, I'll try to put what I think you're getting for together as a question, but I am not remotely sure if I'm close:
What are some differences in design philosophies between Hasbro and Takara-Tomy? Takara-tomy does stuff like Transformers: Go! with a somewhat unique aesthetic and design from Hasbro.


Shockwave wrote:I'd like to know if there are any guidelines regarding the use of fake parts as robot parts (Example would be the fuax car hood chest on the recent Generations Bumblebee/Goldfire figures).
How's this sound?
Are there any guidelines regarding the use of fake alternate-mode designs on figures' robot modes? Something like the faux car hood chest for Generations Bumblebee, or dummy wheels sculpted into an Optimus Prime's back.


Prowl wrote:I want to know if the design team gets more enjoyment out of making new toys of pre-existing characters (your Bumblebees and Optimuses) or doing new things that haven't had a go before (your Ripclaws and Thundertrons and Windblades).
How does this sound?
Does the design team get more enjoyment out of making figures of pre-existing brand characters, or developing new things that haven't been done before (Ripclaw, Thundertron, Windblade)?

Also curious how the knowledge that these days, Hasbro is likely to order a design get another go-around in a few years (EG: Jetfire) factors into the designers' motivation to make the toys 'good' or get things 'right'.
Hmm, how can I ask this without it seeming like a loaded question?
Lately, major characters and fan-favorites have been getting multiple figures in a line (e.g. Generations Jetfire, Bumblebee in any given movie, everybody in TF:Prime). Does knowing that is a possibility act as a safety net in designing the first take on a figure?
Apparently, there is no way I can think of. I'll keep it in mind though.


Tigermegatron wrote:Here's my questions...

1- At the 2014 Hasbro NYC Toyfair,Hasbro Hinted at a possible 5 planned Leader sized Generations toys for the 2014 to 2015 time frame. For this leader class,are figures like the following planned Sixshot,Shockwave,Galvatron,Rodimus Prime,Masterforce Overlord.

2- Is their another Titan new mold planned for the Generations toy line. Like Fortress Maximus,Scorponok,Trypticon or Omega Supreme.

3- Anymore combiners new molds planned for the Generations toy line?
None of these are questions are acceptable design questions.

4- Why doesn't the Generations toy line create more 1980's animal based Transformers.
I doubt I'd use this, but I'll keep it in mind in case I run out of material.

5- Are their any plans to create newer toys for some Classics Generations toys that got made in the wrong size. Like creating a newer generations voyager sized toy for 1985 Astrotrain. Ultra sized toy for 1988 Pretender Thunderwing. Leader sized Galvatron toy. Voyager sized seeker mold. Ultra Sized toys for G-1 Cyclonus & G-1 Scourge.
I'm not even going to keep this one in mind, it's too much opinion. I have G1 and Classics Astrotrain, they're the same size. What you'd like to see isn't the same as them being made in the "wrong" size.


Sparky Prime wrote:There's a few things I'd like to ask about... I'm most curious about how much time they put into each step of the design process. I understand it takes them about a year to fully develop a figure, longer for triple changers... But I'd like to know about how long they're working on the concept design sketching, prototype development and so on. Have they ever had to go back to the drawing board with a figure or do they continue to press forward trying to iron out issues that may arise along the way?
I'll add this, but again, I feel like there was some material recently that attempted to cover this. Here's how I worded it:
We understand it's about 18 months from start to finish, but how much time does each segment of a figure's design generally take? The concept design sketching, prototype development, and so on. Have you ever had to go back to the drawing board on a figure, or do you continue to press forward trying to iron out issues that may arise along the way?

Do they find it easier to develop original designs or to work with something they need to make the figure look like as with the movie figures?
This is pretty similar to Prowl's first question. I'll add your take as a second element:
Does the design team get more enjoyment out of making figures of pre-existing characters, or developing new things that haven't been done before (Ripclaw, Thundertron, Windblade)? Which is easier?


TM wrote:I suspose i'd like to know the following questions.....

1- How hard is it for Hasbro to upsize or downsize a existing TF character mold. Is it a easy process to do or extremely hard to do.
I ask the question because of the Energon Megatron ultra & leader sized toy molds? I'm sure most fans & kids would like to see this happen much more.
This is a dangerous question in a way, because this year they've released several Cyberverse figures upsized to deluxe and voyager, a far more current and potentially less successful example of which you speak. I'll consider using it, here's how I'd ask it:
Recently, we've had figures released that are upsized versions of existing smaller figures. In general, how difficult is it to upsize or downsize an existing toy design into a new scale or class?

2- When doing a extensive resculpt or simple newer retooled head. How hard or easy is this to do?
This has been covered out the wazoo the past decade now that second heads are often planned into design of the tool on the first toy's design. Retooling after the fact can be easy or hard depending on the level of the retool though, it's a bit vague to ask about, something like TFP Prowl and Samurai Prowl is going to be far more difficult than Ironhide and Ratchet swapping heads.

"Swapping heads" sounds so wrong.
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Re: Questions for Hasbro on TF design?

Postby Tigermegatron » Mon May 05, 2014 4:59 am

Here's some more,perhaps better TF toy questions relating to design.

1- How long does a bigger sized TF toy like Leader,Ultimate and Titan take to create compared to the much smaller sized TF toys like Legends,commander and deluxe sized TF toys. Really curious to know how long it took you guys to create Titan Metroplex.

2- When designing a TF toy,Is it hard to remove initial things(articulation,gimmicks,parts,sculpting detail) from the design when the toy line needs to come under budget and cutbacks need to occur.

3- How hard is it to incorporate diecast metal parts with plastic parts on those Masterpiece TF toys. does extra test & more tech need to be done due to the nature of the diecast parts being more difficult to work with on the toy.
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Re: Questions for Hasbro on TF design?

Postby JediTricks » Mon May 05, 2014 10:56 am

Tigermegatron wrote:Here's some more,perhaps better TF toy questions relating to design.

1- How long does a bigger sized TF toy like Leader,Ultimate and Titan take to create compared to the much smaller sized TF toys like Legends,commander and deluxe sized TF toys. Really curious to know how long it took you guys to create Titan Metroplex.

2- When designing a TF toy,Is it hard to remove initial things(articulation,gimmicks,parts,sculpting detail) from the design when the toy line needs to come under budget and cutbacks need to occur.

3- How hard is it to incorporate diecast metal parts with plastic parts on those Masterpiece TF toys. does extra test & more tech need to be done due to the nature of the diecast parts being more difficult to work with on the toy.
Much better, I can use all of these with minimal rewriting.
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