Sunday, December 29, 2013

The Big Ship

 The logistics of moving hundreds of boxes out to people is an interesting one!
 
 Here's me, during the beginning 20% of the process.


 What the house looks like after the Fed Ex truck drops off the product.



 You can't pack hundreds of Hun-Dred's without watching a film from our greatest living American actor.


Of course the cat is going to make himself comfy under a box you keep dropping 9 oz robots into.


The secret of making a random pack!


 Enemy is aggravated that I shipped away so many of his clone warriors. He'll have to get over it.


I'm told this is too much butter for my rice. And apparently Trixie wants my Dr. Pepper.

 
 Tools of the trade.

 

 Toyfinity member Mr. X wonders why I am taking his picture.



 A small selection of boxes, ready to go to the post office, seconds before my counter imploded from roboty awesomeness.


 Striking a pose.


Coming in 2014! The new Vulgar and Cruel! (not shown above)


 A well-earned packing victory dinner.

More boxes go out tomorrow. Thanks for your patience! Can't wait to see what you guys and gals think of the stuff.

Friday, December 27, 2013

Merry Kentmas!

We here at Toyfinity hope that each and every one of you are having a fantastic holiday season!

And by the way - shipping begins today! Hun-Dred and Enemy shall be invading your homes soon!
Club Mordle reopens THIS SUNDAY for Club Members, with sale to the general public a few days after the sale of the Godbeast's Kabuto Mushi figure next week. The Kabuto Mushi makes an excellent ally (or enemy) for your Robo Force and Mordles.

Back to shipping! I know you guys and gals want these ASAP!

Sunday, December 22, 2013

THANK YOU!

What can I say? You guys and girls rock!

There's a point in any creative process when you have to look yourself in the mirror and say, "Is this really something I want to do? Do I want to put my vision out there and see how people react to it?"
I talk about this a lot with my friends. Success, failure, apathy - it takes a thick skin to work in any field where Mr. Aaron Nonymous can go in the internet and say that someone should be shot in the face for a creative venture. (for those that don't know, I produced DEER CROSSING)
And there's only one time when you truly know if things are going to work or not - zero hour, when the clock finally hits the time of a sale/film release date/what have you and people can experience what you have worked for months/years/decades on.
This past Friday was one of those times.

I've previously related how long the process took from concept to prototype in-hand for Maxx and friends. We had a successful launch at NYCC 2013, followed by a solid sale of the Maxx Zero Origin Edition kit online soon after. Because of the way things work in this business, you are constantly making decisions when you are in the thick of the culmination of something you did months previous. For instance, I needed to place an order for Robo Force round 2 before we even knew what full sales were on round 1. We also had to come up with what the new paint applications would be, and how they would relate each of the characters that can be built with the kit.
So you have to roll the dice on quantities and deco, taking into account any number of different factors - other work at the factory, shipping times, holidays, other products on sale and how close those sales are to your sale, how much will new paint ops cost to implement, and so on. It's an interesting challenge. After discussing plans with Matt Doughty, there was no doubt in my mind to tie it to the November Glyos release (which turned into the December Glyos release, things being what they are). The reasons that Hun-Dred and Enemy are specifically in these colors will be revealed over time, but trust me when I say these colors were not chosen at random. Similar thought has been put into the next editions, which you should see around March 2014.


Above, see Maxx-X protecting some Zibits from another robotic entity you'll meet in 2014.
You could say he's a master of cruelty...and he's bigger than ever.

I want to personally thank everyone for coming out to the sale - our traffic was fantastic and your support is much appreciated. Toyfinity is just a couple of collectors who wanted to make the fun toys WE wanted for our shelves, so we do not take this support for granted. We'll continue to adjust quantities - the amount of kits available this time was over double what was available on the first edition - so we'll continue to search for the sweet spot that allows these to be in stock for more than a few hours.
I'm going to continue to push the deco until we are completely ready for the Classic and Ultimate Editions later in 2014. The Robo Force comic will continue - appreciate all the feedback!
Manglor development continues at a solid pace, and we hope to release them by NYCC 2014 at the latest.
Additionally, I have to thank my brothers in Toyfinity Charlie Parry and Mike Hart. Couldn't do it without you guys. Special thanks to Matt and the Onell team for their assistance and support throughout the whole project. Robo Force, one of the franchises voted Least Likely to Ever Return, is back and thriving due to your hard work.

Expect shipping notices to start later this week after Christmas. If there is any delay, I'll let you know here as soon as I know.

I recommend, in the meantime, that you support the upcoming release of the Godbeast's Kabuto Mushi figure. It's been a long time in the works - I have handled the figure multiple times now and can't wait to have some fighting alongside Maxx in his upcoming battles on my shelf!
You can even give Hun-Dred some insect minions, should you so choose to.
 
Hope to see many of you back here in a couple of weeks for the first-ever production GLOW IN THE DARK MORDLES! Geihoza lives!

Friday, December 20, 2013

ROBO FORCE COMIC UPDATED~!

http://www.toyfinity.com/comicIndex.php
Special this week - two pages! No page next week.
Presented without commentary.

DROP IS LIVE!

STORE IS LIVE!
GO GET STUFF NOW!

There is only a limited amount of shirts and Zibits, so they may not last long.
Go Robo Force!

So - why ZIBITS?

Actually, that's the same thing my business partners asked me!
In the end, it comes down to supporting things you believe in.
Zibits is a line I don't think received a fair shake at retail. It was generally in the third or fourth aisle at TRU - and very few other brick and mortar stores carried them outside of Barnes and Noble, at least that I saw in person.
Essentially, you have the spiritual successor to Zeroids, Star Team, and Robo Force in Zibits.
In the 60s, Zeroids had the gimmick of being motorized and and spring-action arms, as well as a function for each robot to have a purpose for their motorization. Zogg the Commander took this further, having light up action and magnetic LAZER BEAM activation ability. Beyond this, the robot designs are very American at the time - long lines. Almost automotive paint detail and stylization.

In the 70s, Star Team basically had a stripped down version of Zogg in the Zeroid Scout to capitalize on Star Wars, specifically R2-D2. There are no power actions - a very basic toy. More real than the style of the Zeroids.

In the 80s, Robo Force has the infamous suction cup and huggy arms - perhaps ludicrous alone, but in reality taking advantage of pneumatic technology which was "hot" in the 1980s and a logical extension of where Zeroids had started. Rocks and Bugs and Things would utilize similar gimmicks. The robots are smaller than Zeroids in stature, but bulkier to reflect how we thought of robots at the time.
Arguably, the 90s had Z-Bots - robots in a nano scale. Smaller, more compact, influenced by Japanese designs such as Transformers which had dominated the 80s.
And now, Zibits. What would a Zeroid in the year 2010 have as his power actions? If not magnetic bits, surely remote control via wireless device to finally accomplish what the 60's toy wished it could do. Smaller, more compact robots; light and sound...that's what I felt when I saw Zibits in stores. These were what modern Zeroids would be.

Zibits ran successfully in the US for one full series, but distribution on later waves was spotty. I'm still looking for three of the 1.5 wave releases myself; they may have only been overseas releases. Series 3 recently started hitting Radio Shack, but only six of the figures were released. I had the opportunity to buy in on a small quantity of the second six figures and bring them to you guys at a pretty good price, so I said "what the hell?"
We'll take a chance and see if we can't bring these neat little guys to some more eyes than they had at mass retail...just like their spiritual predecessors.

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Switching tracks

Later this month!

A Mordle birthday cake?

http://www.valmuller.com/2013/12/01/mordle-on-the-shelf/
Click the picture and learn about the Mordle cake! Thanks to Val Muller for sharing the tale with me.
The best is yet to come for the Mordles as we go into 2014.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Force Enlistment Information!

Hello Zetonian Fans!

The next release of ROBO FORCE product will be this Friday, December 20th, at 9:30 pm Eastern Standard Time.
It has been a blast coming up with new colors for the Robo Force. The colorways in this release match the recent Onell Gendrone Rebellion/Ecroyex Initiative colors exactly, so you can upgrade your Robo Force with Glyos pieces (or vice versa)!

Product details are as follows:
- Robo Force Reforged HUN-DRED THE CONQUEROR Edition
Kit includes the standard 41 piece complement of Glyos compatible parts -now with over fifty paint applications and one secret faction symbol! -allowing you to build either Maxx Zero, Sentinel the Protector, Enemy the Dictator, Hun-Dred or your own robotic creation. $18 per kit, limit of four per customer.
- Robo Force Origin ENEMY THE DICTATOR Edition (pictured below)
Kit includes the standard 41 piece complement of Glyos compatible parts and an additional 12 pieces for maxximum customization possibilities! With over 50 paint applications and one secret faction symbol, kit can be used to build any of the four main Robo Force characters. $20 per kit, limit of four per customer.

Additionally, there will be a limited quantity of Robo Force shirts in the store - only $15 each.
Toyfinity is also proud to offer, for the first time, an assortment of Zibits! Zibits are fantastic mini R/C robots with lights and zounds! Six different characters will be available in limited quantities.
All items will ship directly after the Christmas holiday.
After your purchase your new Force members this Friday, be sure to check out the Comics section for a new Robo Force page!

The next Mordles sale will be later this month.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

MORDLES comic updated

http://www.toyfinity.com/comicIndex.php
In the newest fantastic installment from James Groman and myself, learn what the life of a Mordle is like! And a secret message to Mordle fans here:
SCREECH HISS BARK HISS!

The evil of HUN-DRED!

He's back, and tougher than ever, utilizing an alloy stolen from the Gendrone Rebellion by another dark soldier of Nazgar - he is HUN-DRED® THE CONQUEROR!

Monday, December 16, 2013

Saturday, December 14, 2013

New Robo Force sale - DECEMBER 20th! and new Robo Force comic page up!

http://www.toyfinity.com/comicIndex.php
What's Maxx Zero been up to? Find out in the latest update to the Robo Force comic!

Also, the next ROBO FORCE products - two new kit colorways - will be on sale Friday December 20th! Watch the blog next week for preview pics and full details.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

So, what was Robo Force known as outside the US in the 80s?

When US properties are taken around the world, names change frequently.
Such was the case with Robo Force in the 80s, where it was sold in many other countries as THE ROBOTS!
 Thanks to Toyfinitarian Paul McConnell for the images!
It's also unusual to see these carded!
A fun fact - Coptor was part of the evil Robots to even out the sides with five robots each. Maybe that will carry over into the new storylines...

If anyone out there in Toyfinity land has a carded Sentinel along these lines, hit me up!

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

THE HOUSE OF FUN is now online!

http://thehouseoffun.com/
Guys!~
With Christmas coming up, there are plenty of collectors in your life who need more toys!
What better place to buy them from than the House of Fun in Oaklyn NJ!
Chris, the proprietor of the House of Fun, has recently opened an online version of his incredible store - some fantastic deals to be had there on new and vintage products, such as:
 A boxed and complete Gi Joe Ice Snake for TWENTY EIGHT BUCKS! Get this underrated late series Gi Joe vehicle for almost nothing!
G1 Transformers SLUDGE just $120! So minty, I almost cried looking at its beauty. Arrived in a lot where the provenance was direct - some of the Dinobots in this set (sooooo beautiful) still had Lionel stickers on the boxes!

And much much more!
One benefit of going to the House of Fun in person is that they still have stock of sold out Toyfinity products like the Robo Force Genesis Edition and Imbalance of Blood Mordle - which can only be bought in person at the store (no phone or internet sales on those items). Just one more great reason to take a trip there. If you collect multiple lines and can't find something for a great price at the House of Fun, you aren't looking hard enough!

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

The first Robo Force custom!

Short and sweet- courtesy Mike Hart, one of the Toyfinity Team, comes this custom of Maxx Zero!
He had a buddy of his work up a unique paint design for Maxx - we like it a lot around here!

Friday, November 29, 2013

MORDLES COMIC UPDATED!

http://www.toyfinity.com/comicIndex.php
The Mordles are back in an all-new edition with all new renditions by the indomitable James Groman! Check it out today!

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Robo Force comic updated!

http://www.toyfinity.com/comicIndex.php
The Robo Force adventure continues with a new page! Learn who was entering the laboratory. What has happened to the Zetonians? And what are those mysterious robotic entities? More questions!

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Club Mordle is open once again!


The Club Mordle store is open once again!
Get your Explorer Mordle, Sect of Rand, Underworld, and Imbalance of Blood Editions right now!
On sale to the general public will be Thursday, November 21st at 9 pm EST!
Thanks for all your support - the Mordles live!

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Updates!


 I know it's been quiet here at Toyfinity for the last couple of weeks. Needed to make sure we secured the December wave of Robo Force so it was a lot of behind-the-scenes over here doing some different things. Covering a couple of quick things here:

- Club Mordle store opens again tomorrow around 9 pm! Get your first chance at Big Mordle outside of NYCC.

- listen to Toyfinity on a podcast, the Old Oil House, episode 131. We reveal some fun things about the December Robo Force drop, as well as Manglors! People who wanted more paint apps on their Robo Force will be very happy with the next drop.

- I've received a few e-mails and seen posts about what exactly was sold at NYCC this year. So, to clarify:
 
 The above orange colored Maxx Zero is a TEST SHOT. It was only for display and not for sale. It wound up spending more time on the table than intended because the Robo Force figures I had for sale went a lot quicker than expected.
The first edition of Robo Force is the Genesis Edition...
 
 which can be seen above. The Genesis Edition has a small number of paint apps on the chest of Maxx Zero and the heads of each character (Hun-Dred, Sentinel, and Enemy).
For NYCC itself, there was a limited run of fifty pieces that are part of the Genesis Edition, but with NO PAINT APPS. I consider these part of the Genesis Edition personally - it came down to a choice: did I want pieces for the show or not? So I chose to get them for the show, but without paint apps.

- because of some things on the back end of operations here, I pushed the Robo Force comic into next week. Should be up tomorrow! Enjoy a pic of Maxx Zero by Jerzy Drozd, artist of the new Robo Force comic!
- and the new Mordles comic is approaching a finished stage. Enjoy this scene from the new comic - first time that a Mordle has been drawn in the modern era.
Why is he surprised? Find out soon!

 

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

SHIPPING!

Robo Force is out there! Almost all of them shipped out in the last 24 hours. Can't wait for you guys to get these.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

ROBO FORCE SOLD OUT!

Thanks Robo Force fans! Quick sell out, all gone! More coming in December.

The Return of Robo Force

READ THIS AFTER YOU BUY YOUR NEW ROBO FORCE!
 
It's funny. The return of Robo Force was never supposed to happen.
Then Tiltor showed up...
I've related the story before, but not 100% from my perspective.
I've had a standing search for Robo Force on eBay for years. The line was pretty difficult to complete, actually. I had a hard time finding four of the figures to complete my set: S.O.T.A., Maxx Steele himself complete and unbroken, Vulgar, and Cruel. Personally, I think Blazer is the most common one.
After years of using AOL for my e-mail, I switched over to Gmail a few years back and have greatly enjoyed the change - except for ONE THING. AOL could never be accused of trying to actually improve the experience - they don't back up your e-mails (or at least didn't five years ago). They have some kind of proprietary filing cabinet system where you can't open your e-mails without AOL (3rd parties have done some work on this since, but I haven't seen one that worked 100%).
Gmail is continuously moving buttons and functionality around. And such was part of the reason I didn't get Tiltor. The only Tiltor, potentially, in the entire world. At least, for now.

You see, Gmail has pretty strong spam filters. And one day, I tagged an eBay standing search as spam. Which caused Gmail to put ALL of my eBay searches into spam. A buddy of mine contacted me about a toy auction that he thought I'd be drooling over, only to find out I hadn't heard about it at all. Some digging in Gmail showed that I had missed over a week of e-mails from eBay.
It was around the same time that I saw this post over on Roboplastic Apocalypse.
Tiltor had come up for sale, and I missed it. Perhaps I would have been too late even with the auto searched, perhaps not. But Steve at the RA was kind enough to invite me onto his podcast to talk with him and Spacecaps, the buyer of said Tiltor, to help try and determine it's origin.

I'll admit - I was mega pissed off that I missed this figure. Prototype/test shots are rare finds from vintage lines - usually you find a bunch at once, such as the recent find of Animax prototypes at a cleanout. And an unproduced character! But such is life.
My OCD kicked in pretty hard and I started searching the internet for any possible information on where this Tiltor came from. Maybe another had popped up. Things are always being archived somewhere. This once led me to a set of unproduced Gi Joe Manimal figures:

Stuff is out there, all over the place. It just depends on time and place.
But little did I know that Tiltor was the key to everything.
While searching, I found the following drawing:
Image shown courtesy of my buddy Mike over at ToyMemories.com, without whom none of this would have been possible. The same image that I saw for Tiltor's head. If Mike had chosen to scan any other part into the computer, we might not be having this conversation. But that is how the universe works at times. You don't get a one-of-a-kind prototype, but instead are presented opportunity.

My big interest from the wreckage of Ideal Toys was NOT Robo Force, believe it or not - but an obscure line from the 80s called Rocks and Bugs and Things. My brother Michael carried around the accessory figures from that line, the Mordles, for years afterward.

 
I was highly interested in Mordles. Over a number of months, I talked to Mike about where he had obtained the blueprints from Ideal and who might own the rights. Skipping over months of legal fact checking and negotiation, and the rights to a few Ideal properties were mine.
This put me and the Toyfinity team in a strange position. Collectors frequently say "If I were in charge of a toyline, I'd do this!" Now we were in that position. What was the best way to bring back these lines - never the greatest selling lines of all time, but fondly remembered by many of us. How to stay true to what the intentions of these lines were?
Enter Matt Doughty.
Matt is the genius behind the Glyos System Series, a toyline which uses interchangeable pieces to bring to life a number of robots, aliens, and monstrosities from his imagination. Since 2007, he has made well over 300 products in the Glyos System Series, and a number of other independent toy production companies have released products fully compatible in this system, including the Weaponeers of Monkaa, the return of the classic Outer Space Men and Power Lords, Godbeast's Kabuto Mushi, NiStuff's 481 Universe, and the soldiers of the Banimon universe.

  
Matt has been a long-time friend and I love this product (even if I was initially skeptical of independent toylines after previous attempts). There was really no other way I wanted to bring these characters back other than as part of the Glyos System.
It all started with a drawing, which you'll see soon here and on the main Glyos blog, a little over a year ago. My main direction to Matt, who is the true architect of this figure design, was simple: "Make Robo Force Glyos." Later, I insisted that Hun-Dred, Sentinel, and Enemy be part of the design, as well as Hun-Dred's signature claws. But truthfully, the new Robo Force is much more than the sum of its parts. It's the realization of the dream of four friends to bring quality toys to the marketplace, and resurrect a beloved memory who never got his chance due to an insane suction cup selling point, huggy/crushy power action arms, and going up against possibly the biggest toy-originated property every known, the Transformers.

Below, see the Advanced Form Maxx Zero, buildable using all 41 parts from the first Robo Force kit, on sale tonight at 9 pm EST.
 
 Hundreds of robotic variations are possible with this kit, and can be increased with any existing Glyos system compatible product. Check out one crazy ROBO FORCE's Sentinel the Protector of Robo Force build created by Matt Doughty below.

The original Steele-Forged Heroes are back! Get your hands on them tonight at 9 pm EST.
Check back soon for the first installment of the all-new Robo Force comic book written by myself and drawn by Jerzy Drozd!

I couldn't end this post without special thank you kudos to my partners Mike Hart and Charlie Parry without whom this would not have been possible; my brother Michael for his unwavering love of Mordles; Mike K. and Jay for their inspiration and support; Marcus, Jesse, Ron D., Paul and the rest of the team over at Onell for all of their work on this project; all of those who have supported the Toyfinity project over the last year, with website coverage, encouragement, artwork, and such; James Groman for helping me realize a dream - we'll get REDACTED in here someday!; my father John Kent for always giving me the final push into following my dreams, no matter how insane they are; my wife Kelly for her endless support over the last decade in realizing these dreams, and my bestie Debbie for the same; and finally, Matt Doughty himself for all his work and inspiration on this project. Couldn't have done it without you, and wouldn't have wanted to. We did it! Looking forward to the next project!