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PASADENA... part 3
(griffin's 2011 BotCon report)


Saturday 3pm - Collector Club

Panelists from the left - Brian (boss), Lanny (Creative Design), Pete (Marketting), Jeramiah (doing a live twitter feed).


 

This year, Animated Stunticons. The logo started out as a sketch on a postit after discussions about the concept/theme.

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This led to several ideas that had crash-test themes or tyre track motifs.
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Then came the Toxitron idea, and it's own logo was born.

An early propsed layout for the boxset box.

Which was pretty close to how it ended up.

Next up, Cheetor. (head designs)

More head designs.

And Motormaster, as a total 'head in a bucket'.

And Wildrider's head.

Next was an example of a colour layout diagram for plastic and paint colours.

As well as an example of a mould tree, which shows which parts of each toy have to be the same colour plastic.
Some plastics don't take paint, and the different types of plastics needed for strength of joints or softness of flexable parts... the matching of paints to different plastics is difficult.

Mockup set from actual Animated toys to see how the group of toys look together as a set.
They went into the usual explination about how they end up with the moulds they do - they see what ones are available to use, then FunPub's people discuss and send concept and colour proposals to Hasbro.  For the 13 toys, they send about 80 concept proposals to Hasbro... which they said was a nine month process. (again, I think they were hoping for sympathy on their workload, but fans don't want 13 toys each year for BotCon... so it's like their own fault for putting themselves under so much unnecessary pressure)
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Fisitron. (one commented that the vehicle mode was referred to as a turtle)

Shattered Glass pair - Galvatron and Thundercracker.
Thundercracker was described as needing to be 'as ugly as possible'. It was even mistaken for one of those oddly coloured prototypes you occasionally see, that are made up of randomly coloured plastics.

Animated pair - Toxitron and Sideswipe.
Toxitron was something they wanted to do for several years now, and finally had the right theme and mould to do it.
The pattern on the side door of Sideswipe is Cybertronian for 'SS'.

And the 3-pack of Autotroopers. Lots of paint apps... especially in making it look like a completely different toy to Fisitron.

Instructions for Motormaster were shown, to point out that the image of the toy at the top was acutally a photo of an Optimus toy with a Motormaster head drawn over the top, because the head sculpt was not yet ready at that time.

The Comic cover... Inspired by the poster for the movie 'The Italian Job'.

Unfortunately, it meant that they were short one member of the Stunticons on the main image.  So Wildrider was placed in the FunPub logo box in the top left hand corner.

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The 2012 club exclusive toys were then unveiled.
Runamuck (Wheeljack mould with a new head) - Club Member figure.

Runabout (also with the Wheeljack mould and same new head) - Club store exclusive.

Shattered Glass Drift (redeco of the Blurr toy) - as a second Club Store exclusive for 2012.
The story could even be done by Shane McCarthy, but they are still in talks over it.

 

Questions

BotCon shirts without location or dates again this year (last year it was because they would have to pay Disneyworld a fee) - they have been (permanantly) removed to be able to sell (and wear) the shirts beyond that particular weekend.

Hydro Bumblebee & Wingblade Optimus - they wanted them, but were not available.

Shattered Glass Beast Wars - looked at, but cut from options.

There will be more text stories coming to the website.
They are still working on upgrading their site, which will include a new fan-forum that will start from scratch (losing everything on the current forum).

TakaraTomy's factories that make the toys, do the small number of convention toys as a favour to Hasbro. They'd rather not produce such a small amount, due to the amount of time it takes to prepare the factory for each figure.

Derek Wyatt hated the concept of Wreckgar as Motormaster, especially in vehicle mode, so it was never considered.

FunPub have done 22 conventions so far, between Transformers and GIJoe.

Again they commented that they are swamped with projects and don't have enough staff or time for much else at this time (which wouldn't be a problem if they weren't using up so much time making and selling so many *different* toys each year - quality rather than quantity... focus more on the fan-related elements, develop less figures and make their money from producing more of the toys that sell out).
 

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***All pictures in this BotCon report are mine unless noted. Any that are borrowed, should have the source credited/noted.  If you want to use/borrow any of my photos, all I ask is for you to please credit the source as well. I try to take as many of my own photos as possible, and usually only resort to using others if I failed to get something, or my photo wasn't clear enough.

OZFORMERS - Australasian Transformers News and Interaction (our 15th year - longer than any other moderated Transfan community)
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BotCon website - The official Collector Club and Convention website (check it out for when and where the next one will be)
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Me --> griffin @ otca.com.au