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How long will they last?

Hero Factory Ninjago Chima years

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69 replies to this topic

#1 Guest_Takua the Chronicler7_*

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Posted Feb 10 2013 - 07:12 PM

Okay, I just want to know your opinion for this. Since the Bionicle line lasted 10 years, how long do you think the Hero Factory, Ninjago, and Chima sets will last?
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#2 Offline Your Evil Friend

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Posted Feb 10 2013 - 07:26 PM

I dont know about the latter two, nor do I really care, but HF I dont know. Bionicles story did help it pass throught many years and its something of which HF lacks at the moment. I would say maybe 7 years max but we will see.


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#3 Guest_X-G.12_*

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Posted Feb 10 2013 - 09:11 PM

I wouldn't be surprised if ninjago lived more than five years, honestly. part of it is that it has a TV-show. :fear:

 

Chima, :shrugs: I really don't know. I didn't really like the TV-show, but it looks marketed towards five-year-olds (my little brother LOVES it)

 

HF...meh. it might last a while but...most of the old bionicle fans want bionicle back, so I wouldn't be surprised if lego scrapped HF and re-instated bionicle. just me though.


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#4 Offline Lyichir

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Posted Feb 11 2013 - 08:52 AM

They'll last for as long as they can sustain sales. Many Lego themes last for at most three years, yet Hero Factory and Ninjago are each due for a fourth year. Personally, I'd wager that Hero Factory might last the longest of the three, since its loose story can be easily adapted for new generations of kids.


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#5 Offline Meiko

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Posted Feb 11 2013 - 09:09 AM

I think Ninjago will be over after 2014. Hero Factory will last a long time I think. I'd say it has at least 3 more years ahead of it. As for Chima, it's a bit early to determine, but I'd guess 3-4 years give or take.


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#6 Offline Aanchir: Rachira of Time

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Posted Feb 11 2013 - 09:12 AM

I wouldn't place any bets that any story theme (besides Hero Factory, perhaps) is going to last as long as BIONICLE did, simply because it was realized after-the-fact that in its later years BIONICLE hadn't really been as successful as had been thought at the time. TLG will be keeping a closer eye on that with their current roster of themes, and so it's less likely that any theme will keep going in the future if a new theme is projected to generate stronger consumer interest. Success and longevity aren't always coincident, and even though Ninjago performed better than any previous new theme in its debut year, it will almost certainly run out of steam eventually, and when it does TLG will be fully prepared to end it.It's hard to judge Hero Factory's potential for longevity because it isn't as groundbreaking as Ninjago was and so doesn't get as much publicity either within the toy industry or within LEGO itself. As Lyi said, it could potentially keep going for quite a while based on its very adaptable, episodic storyline. But at the same time there's nothing stopping TLG from ending the theme and creating a new theme around the same building system if they begin to think that would be more profitable in the long run. In any event, Hero Factory and Ninjago are both planned to continue in 2014.
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#7 Offline Ptah

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Posted Feb 11 2013 - 10:00 AM

Interesting topic. 

@Chima - Too early to tell.  This theme is at the big rollout phase. Experience has shone that Lego does 2 years with a 1 year cooling off.  First year introduces the theme.  Second year releases a new wave.  Third year, sets are still on the shelves but no new creative content is added. Chima will have to be extraordinary to buck that trend.

 

@Ninjago - Ninjago is extraordinary enough to get a third and fourth year, but I don't think it will get another beyond this mysterious robot storyline.  I'm curious how the 'Last Battle' sets will sell. Storywise, it got the short end of the stick. Will this affect how the sets are received?

 

@Hero Factory - It's already bucked that 3 year trend so it is certainly on track to beat Bionicle's longevity.  Brain Attack carries similarities with the Bohrok and Piraka storylines.  I suspect we'll get at least 2 more years of Hero Factory, but I don't know beyond it. One year will probably give us vehicle modes maybe even transformations like the Construct Bots Kre-O's coming out with.  And one year collecting the golden MacGuffin,  

 

From this old Bionicle fan, the story plays directly into my buying choices. I'm not as invested in HF as I was in Toa so I've never collected a complete set in any wave. Ninjago was refreshing the first season,  The second season with the snakes cooled me off, but the Final Battle makes me want the Golden dragon set.  That's my two cents.     


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#8 Offline TechnicRage

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Posted Feb 18 2013 - 08:32 PM

Hero Factory is gonna be around for a while, so get used to it. Chima is hitting mainstream success and I predict it is gonna last a few years. Every theme has it's time, and Ninjago's coming this year. Hate it if you want, but it happens with every theme, accept Slizers and Power Miners.


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#9 Offline Aanchir: Rachira of Time

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Posted Feb 19 2013 - 07:16 AM

Hero Factory is gonna be around for a while, so get used to it. Chima is hitting mainstream success and I predict it is gonna last a few years. Every theme has it's time, and Ninjago's coming this year. Hate it if you want, but it happens with every theme, accept Slizers and Power Miners.
Not sure what you mean by "Ninjago's is coming this year"... Ninjago has already been confirmed to continue into 2014, and presumably that includes sets since there are still set designers involved in its planning and execution. No guarantees how much longer it will last after that, but it's certainly not going away completely after this current wave.

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#10 Offline Krane

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Posted Feb 19 2013 - 07:26 AM

For HF I think it will last for 2-3 more years or so. For Chima, I think it will last for only like 4 years.


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#11 Offline AdaptingChaos

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Posted Feb 19 2013 - 09:07 AM

Hero Factory IMO will last about 3-4 more years because of the story being too basic/repetitive as well as the sets. It can get boring to the audience that TLG is aiming towards (5-11 year old boys).

I don't really know how long Ninjago might last, maybe 2 more years?

Chima will probably last something around Hero Factory, with the same target audience.


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#12 Offline Cratak

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Posted Feb 19 2013 - 10:50 AM

Hero Factory: Being a figure building theme that has such a loose story, I predict it to last for another three years, maybe four. The thing is, people who buy these sets don't feel very much emotional attatchment to them (unless it is recieved from a loved one), so they're buying either for the pieces or to play with the set. This makes it a great toy for 6-12(?). The reason it's going to last is because Lego can just keep making new waves that have slightly different designs and the consumers are still going to buy it, because they "look cool". (<-- Not saying this is a bad thing. I do it sometimes myself.)

 

Ninjago: I have a hunch that it's ending after 2014. Watch me be right.

 

Chima: Probably too close to tell. There seems to be a lot of love-it-hate-it comments going on around this forum at least, but I think it has very good potential, and the sets don't look bad. Of course, the animal vehicles will become tiresome after a while, but it'll probably last at least three years. It might last longer if they switch up the vehicle design.

 

*If this is not correct or you do not agree with it, don't sue me. These are my personal predictions, not the facts.


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#13 Offline Aanchir: Rachira of Time

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Posted Feb 19 2013 - 11:01 AM

Hero Factory: Being a figure building theme that has such a loose story, I predict it to last for another three years, maybe four. The thing is, people who buy these sets don't feel very much emotional attatchment to them (unless it is recieved from a loved one), so they're buying either for the pieces or to play with the set. This makes it a great toy for 6-12(?). The reason it's going to last is because Lego can just keep making new waves that have slightly different designs and the consumers are still going to buy it, because they "look cool". (<-- Not saying this is a bad thing. I do it sometimes myself.)
And, of course, because there's no deep, essential backstory to the theme, kids can easily "grow into" or become interested in the toy at any time, so the fanbase can keep refreshing itself even as fans "grow out of" the theme. This was somewhat of a hindrance to BIONICLE, since even the "soft reboots" of the story in 2006 and 2009 still left the theme heavily dependent on previous story arcs to have a proper understanding of the new story arcs' context. I'm not even going to make any guesses at how much this might factor into Hero Factory's potential lifespan, but it shouldn't be ignored that keeping fans is hardly the only way for a toy to maintain strong sales.The thing that really complicates predictions of HF's longevity is that the simplicity of its building system and story means that the same product concept could always be repurposed to an entirely different theme if for whatever reason the Hero Factory branding starts to become more of a liability than an asset. The building system and even the majority of parts and set design principles have the potential to outlive the Hero Factory brand. But I don't foresee that happening in the immediate future.

Edited by Aanchir: Rachira of Time, Feb 19 2013 - 11:04 AM.

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#14 Offline Carlton Lassiter

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Posted Mar 04 2013 - 10:14 AM

I don't think Hero Factory will last much longer.  I'm not even sure how it lasted this long.  The sets just... Do not look good.  Some of them are cool or okay, but a lot of them are just...eh...


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#15 Offline Sheogorath

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Posted Mar 04 2013 - 01:50 PM

Chima: Chima is probably going to work like the older themes: new theme, everyone likes it, then it starts cooling down, then it gets replaced by a new theme.

 

Ninjago: Ninjago was actually a pretty awesome theme. I think that it'll go out in about 2015. part of the reason it could last so long is because it has it's own ninjago game, a storyline that isn't hard to follow, and let's face it: who wouldn't want ninjas?

 

Hero Factory: Give it a few years and it'll be replaced. I mean, Hero Factory is an okay theme, but it's repetitive. I mean, they have been using the same building process for 3 years. then again, bionicle went for 6 without really changing it. also, some people (like me) would prefer a more complex story, instead of Bad guy shows up, heroes almost defeated, new gadget shows up and turns the tide for a victory for the heroes. it happened in the first wave, second wave, third wave, and all of the others, I think.

 

note: these are simply my opinions, not what's going to happen. or what some people would like to happen.


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#16 Offline ninjamonkey3000

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Posted Mar 04 2013 - 01:56 PM

I'm predicting that Ninjago will be done after the 2014 sets- the first 2 waves were obviously a big success, but these new sets just seem like the line's run out of steam.

 

Chima I expect to go for a few more years- maybe 2, 3 more years of sets.  At most I see it ending in 2018.

 

HF is a tricky one- it's already broken the 3-year trend, but I can't see it lasting beyond around 2016-ish.  I predict it gets 3 more years before replacement.


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#17 Offline Aanchir: Rachira of Time

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Posted Mar 04 2013 - 02:59 PM

Hero Factory: Give it a few years and it'll be replaced. I mean, Hero Factory is an okay theme, but it's repetitive. I mean, they have been using the same building process for 3 years. then again, bionicle went for 6 without really changing it. also, some people (like me) would prefer a more complex story, instead of Bad guy shows up, heroes almost defeated, new gadget shows up and turns the tide for a victory for the heroes. it happened in the first wave, second wave, third wave, and all of the others, I think.note: these are simply my opinions, not what's going to happen. or what some people would like to happen.

Hero Factory's story isn't nearly as simplistic and repetitive as you make it out to be. The first wave naturally had a more complex story, given that it was presented in four episodes instead of one or two connected episodes, though the exposition was delivered somewhat poorly. In the second wave's story, the Heroes did get some help from their upgrades, but they were not the finishing blow for the villains-- Surge, who had NOT gotten an upgrade and had been captured at the beginning of the episode, was the one to take down Fire Lord. And in the third wave's story, the upgrades were largely irrelevant to the course of events-- sure, Furno had his little side-plot about getting used to flight, but the real deciding factor was when he and Rocka put aside their differences and decided to share the victory-- Rocka letting Furno be the strategist and Furno letting Rocka confront Witch Doctor. And in Breakout, it was Evo learning to think on his feet that led to Black Phantom's defeat-- ironically, in a confrontation that somewhat mirrored the confrontation between the Toa Nuva and the Bohrok-Kal. By acting on a hunch, the villain's own thirst for power was used against him and the day was saved.Sure, technology plays an important role in the story, just like it does in almost ANY sci-fi story (particularly among merchandise-driven ones), but it's not simply used as a deus ex machina in a single wave.If you want to oversimplify the BIONICLE story this same way, it's not hard. Let's use the 2001, 2002, and early 2003 arcs as an example. In every one of these arcs, bad guy attacks villages (Rahi/Makuta, Bohrok, Bohrok-Kal), Toa collect plot coupons (Kanohi/Makoki Stones, Krana, Krana-Kal), they confront the bad guy in an underground lair and all simultanously fight a losing battle (vs. Makuta void form, vs. Bahrag, vs. silver-brained Bohrok-Kal), and then they get the bright idea of TEAMWORK and use their elemental powers all at the same time to defeat the bad guy (Makuta seemingly destroyed, Bahrag imprisoned, Bohrok-Kal defeated by their own powers). It's not until the Mask of Light story arc that the story was significantly changed from this formula. And yet fans gobbled it up, because they loved the characters, and they loved the sets, and they loved the diverse settings, and they loved the prevailing sense of mysteries being uncovered. And of course, even with this repetitive framework, the story managed to be different each time.On a side note, if you REALLY find the Hero Factory TV episodes simplistic, I encourage you to check out the Hero Factory Secret Mission chapter books by Greg Farshtey. Their stories have way more twists and turns than the TV episodes, plus often much more profound characterization.

Edited by Aanchir: Rachira of Time, Mar 04 2013 - 03:03 PM.

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#18 Offline ~garnira returns~

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Posted Mar 05 2013 - 06:20 PM

Ninjago: It seems to have "cooled down" story wise, but in my neighborhood sets are still flying off the shelves. I guess it really depends on how well they pull off 2014.

 

Chima: I feel like it has been a bit of a let down for most people who were optimistic about it's story (including myself). Even less encouraging, the sets seem to be in a bit of an overflow at local stores, so I don't know if lego's plans will be taken into action... Keep in mind that there was a lot of story planned for bionicle, but it was cut short.

 

Hero factory: I haven't seen much hype about hero factory these days. The story is a bit too repetitive for anyone older than six years old, and I don't see too many new fans joining. I don't get any excitement out of buying hero factory sets anymore either because of two things. For one, they are building the same thing over and over again, and this common design requires no skill or attention to detail. And two, the characters are boring and generic and have no nostalgic value. Lastly, the heroes seem to be nearing the end of their quest. We have gotten more and more glimpses into the obvious "mystery" bad guy, and all the heroes seem to have become full rank heroes. I really can't see how they plan to keep this going for more than three years, 


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#19 Offline Lyichir

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Posted Mar 06 2013 - 10:53 AM

Ninjago: It seems to have "cooled down" story wise, but in my neighborhood sets are still flying off the shelves. I guess it really depends on how well they pull off 2014.

 

Chima: I feel like it has been a bit of a let down for most people who were optimistic about it's story (including myself). Even less encouraging, the sets seem to be in a bit of an overflow at local stores, so I don't know if lego's plans will be taken into action... Keep in mind that there was a lot of story planned for bionicle, but it was cut short.

 

Hero factory: I haven't seen much hype about hero factory these days. The story is a bit too repetitive for anyone older than six years old, and I don't see too many new fans joining. I don't get any excitement out of buying hero factory sets anymore either because of two things. For one, they are building the same thing over and over again, and this common design requires no skill or attention to detail. And two, the characters are boring and generic and have no nostalgic value. Lastly, the heroes seem to be nearing the end of their quest. We have gotten more and more glimpses into the obvious "mystery" bad guy, and all the heroes seem to have become full rank heroes. I really can't see how they plan to keep this going for more than three years, 

In regards to Chima: Are you sure that the proliferation of sets in your local stores are due to a lack of sales, or effective restocking? After all, I've gone into stores many times to find Chima sets cleared out. In any case, sales are likely to pick up from where they are when the TV show gets going consistently starting near the end of this month.

 

As far as Hero Factory is concerned, I think that a lot of your judgments are off the mark. Hero Factory has only just gotten a book series that adds needed depth to the story. And as for the story nearing a conclusion, the potential for a reveal of the mystery bad guy is in no way an indication of the story ending, just the current arc. And keep in mind that the Toa Nuva could also be seen to have matured as characters by the end of the third year of Bionicle; but rather than signifying an end the next year started over with a new team of Toa.In terms of the sets, I find them to be no less repetitive than Bionicle's sets were. As a final note, Hero Factory's business model seems to me to be a lot more conservative than Bionicle's was. Rather than shooting for continuous growth, Hero Factory seems to focus on sustainability through replenishing fans as they grow out of the theme (in which case repetition in story or sets is less of a concern). I haven't seen any indications that Hero Factory has become less successful; sets seem to consistently fly off shelves, with only a few stragglers left behind.


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#20 Offline Adonael

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Posted Mar 07 2013 - 11:36 AM

[font="arial, helvetica, sans-serif;"][color=#0000cd;]In my opinion the problems with Hero Factory are;1) Marketing wise theres not much to collect other than the characters. Theres no extra mask, weapons, cores or anything of the such. Most people have the need to collect something and the more to collect the more interest there is in the product.[/color][/font]

 

[font="arial, helvetica, sans-serif;"][color=#0000cd;]2) Super hero theme can only go so far. I know it's to appeal to a younger audience and focus on new fans instead of old, but after awhile it gets uninteresting. No matter how much story content you try to put in.[/color][/font]

 

[font="arial, helvetica, sans-serif;"][color=#0000cd;]3) The Designs seem to backtrack once they hit Brain attack. The point of this is to probably "Start over" in a term and "upgrade" from this point if Hero Factory continues past its Brain Attack Arch.[/color][/font]

 

[font="arial, helvetica, sans-serif;"][color=#0000cd;]4) Some of the designs are uninteresting and seem a bit hollow. The Torso piece for HF characters really takes away from the build of the characters in my opinion. This is because the back of the characters are exposed, Almost gives them a paper thin feeling.[/color][/font]

 

[font="arial, helvetica, sans-serif;"][color=#0000cd;]I'd say it has a few more years of selling, due to the younger audience. It has bright colors and some interesting designs that catch peoples eyes and the selling point of a TV show and books. While some of Brain Attacks designs are good, others feel like a reboot of sorts. (Mainly the Hero's) If Hero Factory should last for more than, lets say 2-3 more years. I personally think, they will have to improve the design and get rid of the mass amounts of negative space, while keeping the characters articulation.[/color][/font]

 

 

[font="arial, helvetica, sans-serif;"][color=#0000cd;]As for Ninjago and Chima I don't really know. I haven't payed much attention to basic lego sets in years. Chima looks strange though.[/color][/font]


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#21 Offline Clue: The Traitor

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Posted Mar 24 2013 - 03:26 AM

My guess is Hero Factory will last like 4-5 years. But I'm not sure about Chima.


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#22 Offline Aanchir: Rachira of Time

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Posted Apr 02 2013 - 08:48 AM

[font="arial, helvetica, sans-serif;"][color=#0000cd;]In my opinion the problems with Hero Factory are;1) Marketing wise theres not much to collect other than the characters. Theres no extra mask, weapons, cores or anything of the such. Most people have the need to collect something and the more to collect the more interest there is in the product.[/color][/font]

I disagree. Most action figure brands can survive without a whole lot of collectible gimmicks. Meanwhile, lately there have been other collectibles-- the brains. They're not sold separately or anything, but I see no reason why separately-sold collectibles would be essential to the theme's survival, especially since they were so ineffective in BIONICLE.

[font="arial, helvetica, sans-serif;"][color=#0000cd;]2) Super hero theme can only go so far. I know it's to appeal to a younger audience and focus on new fans instead of old, but after awhile it gets uninteresting. No matter how much story content you try to put in.[/color][/font]

Whoa whoa whoa. Where do you get the idea that "super hero theme can only go so far"? That seems to fly in the face of the perennial success of superhero comic books and action figures. Does it get uninteresting for some people? Yes, but so would ANY type of story. No theme can please everybody forever, and BIONICLE was hemorrhaging fans throughout its lifespan (with lots of fans losing interest each year as additional fans moved in to pick up the slack).

[font="arial, helvetica, sans-serif;"][color=#0000cd;]3) The Designs seem to backtrack once they hit Brain attack. The point of this is to probably "Start over" in a term and "upgrade" from this point if Hero Factory continues past its Brain Attack Arch.[/color][/font]

While I don't like the Brain Attack designs as much as the Breakout ones for the most part, I wouldn't say the designs "backtrack" in any way. They certainly still seem to be moving forward by introducing new ideas and building on already established ideas (for instance, introducing more clip-and-handle hinges on parts like the head and torso shell, introducing Technic-based action features without sacrificing the building system, and continuing the trend established in previous series of reusing weapon molds across multiple sets (though with more Technic construction to further differentiate them).

[font="arial, helvetica, sans-serif;"][color=#0000cd;]4) Some of the designs are uninteresting and seem a bit hollow. The Torso piece for HF characters really takes away from the build of the characters in my opinion. This is because the back of the characters are exposed, Almost gives them a paper thin feeling.[/color][/font]

I agree with this one, but don't think it'll have any impact on the theme's lifespan. If it starts to have an impact on sales then it would be easier for TLG to change this in a new Hero Factory series than to replace Hero Factory with a new theme, since the torso construction is hardly the foundation of the Hero Factory brand. 

[font="arial, helvetica, sans-serif;"][color=#0000cd;]I'd say it has a few more years of selling, due to the younger audience. It has bright colors and some interesting designs that catch peoples eyes and the selling point of a TV show and books. While some of Brain Attacks designs are good, others feel like a reboot of sorts. (Mainly the Hero's) If Hero Factory should last for more than, lets say 2-3 more years. I personally think, they will have to improve the design and get rid of the mass amounts of negative space, while keeping the characters articulation.[/color][/font]

I definitely agree that these construction improvements would be great things for Hero Factory. The real question is one of cost. The Breakout series and Brain Attack series, for instance, both have back armor for some of the Heroes, but only those who are at the $12.99 price-point (Rocka, Breez, and Bulk in 2012; Stormer and Surge in 2013). At the smaller ($8.99-$9.99) price point, there's more of an emphasis on giving characters unique weapons and substantial armor on their limbs, rather than adding features like back armor which will be largely irrelevant to the unopened set's shelf presence. Breakout also tended to have back armor for the medium-sized villain sets like Splitface and Voltix, but Brain Attack sacrifices this, probably to accommodate the size and cost of the brain accessories.Again, I don't think these kinds of changes are essential to Hero Factory's continued success, but they'd definitely be worthwhile improvements in the long run. Another change I'd love to see would be the introduction of waist articulation (that may be a ways off, though).

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#23 Offline Bambi

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Posted Apr 02 2013 - 10:53 AM

I expect HF to go on for a few more years. Not sure about Ninjago, maybe one more year. Doubt Chima will make it past two years.


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#24 Offline Jebraltar

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Posted Apr 03 2013 - 06:20 PM

I expect HF to go for another year or too, while like many Lego themes, Chima and Ninjago will discontinue with a life span of maybe 2-3 years.


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#25 Offline Aanchir: Rachira of Time

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Posted Apr 04 2013 - 06:28 AM

I expect HF to go for another year or too, while like many Lego themes, Chima and Ninjago will discontinue with a life span of maybe 2-3 years.

Well Ninjago is almost guaranteed to continue in 2014 (the show is coming back with new episodes in late 2013, according to Jay Vincent, and there are almost certainly going to be sets to tie in with that since Mark Stafford is still involved with the theme), so it will already have passed that three-year milestone, albeit with no summer 2013 wave of sets.Chima I'm not so sure about. Part of me wants to say that it won't last as long as Ninjago since its show, so far, has seemed far weaker. But with that said, a lot of kids have really loved the theme, and I hardly think a weak story is a death blow for a theme-- just look how many themes have succeeded without any substantial story at all. I agree that 2-3 years is probably a pretty good estimate of the theme's lifespan based on what we know so far, but as always it could last longer if it gets a second wind at some point in the next couple years, just as Ninjago managed to exceed expectations in both 2011 and 2012.Hero Factory seems to be going fairly strong, and is confirmed to continue in 2014, so yeah, it's probably got a year or two still in it if not longer. Which is good, because I continue to enjoy both the sets and Greg Farshtey's "Secret Mission" chapter books.

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#26 Offline Nidhiki of the Shadows

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Posted Apr 12 2013 - 06:38 PM

[color=#008000;]I have a feeling Chima and Ninjago will be fairly short lived - maybe 3-4 years? Like most other brick-based themes. That's how it seems to work with that format. Keep things fresh. Of course, a spiritual successor will appear in the future shortly after.[/color]

 

[color=#008000;]As for Hero Factory - seems like its pretty successful and I would expect another couple of years as it tries to fill in the shoes of BIONICLE (though storyline is a lot more simplified). There is a huge amount of new advertising for all lines like multiple video game adaptations and consistent television show episodes, so that may lengthen the life-time of each.[/color]

 

[color=#008000;]-NotS[/color]


Edited by Nidhiki of the Shadows, Apr 12 2013 - 06:44 PM.

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#27 Offline Heir of the Chronicler

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Posted Apr 13 2013 - 07:49 PM

Bionicle was the exception, not the rule. I doubt LEGO will keep a single line rolling that long again, especially as many themes don't even get the several-year treatment (I'm looking at you, Monster Hunters, Pharaoh Quest, etc.)

 

- Heir


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#28 Offline Aanchir: Rachira of Time

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Posted Apr 13 2013 - 09:22 PM

Bionicle was the exception, not the rule. I doubt LEGO will keep a single line rolling that long again, especially as many themes don't even get the several-year treatment (I'm looking at you, Monster Hunters, Pharaoh Quest, etc.) - Heir

To be fair, themes like BIONICLE and Hero Factory may operate quite differently than a lot of themes just by virtue of being so closely associated with their building styles. With a lot of System themes, it's easy to replace them with another theme that caters to the exact same audience but with a very different inspiration and visual style. But with themes that cater to a very specific style of building, replacing them is not always as easy.Another example of a theme that was very story-driven, in an invented universe, and lasted about as long as BIONICLE is Fabuland, now very well-beloved by certain segments of the AFOL community. Fabuland was a preschool theme aimed at the age range between Duplo and System. Like BIONICLE, it had a huge catalog of parts all to itself, rather than sharing most of its parts with other themes. And believe it or not, it even had a decent amount of story media-- in fact, the instruction manuals for several sets doubled as storybooks, with the characters assembling the set's scenery and buildings.Now, Fabuland isn't with us today, but my point is that themes that have a lot making them unique from other themes-- either a very specific audience, or a very specific style of building-- aren't necessarily subject to the same rules of longevity that govern a lot of other themes. And I think this gives Hero Factory much more of a potential lifespan than the typical System theme. Of course, TLG has already demonstrated that they can use Hero Factory's building system for other themes, so perhaps it's not as secure in its position as BIONICLE was, but still there's not necessarily a whole lot of pressure to phase it out for something better when what it is is already geared heavily towards the fancies of its particular audience.

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#29 Offline fishers64

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Posted Apr 16 2013 - 11:01 AM

Mostly (IMO) depends on the decisions TLG makes year-to-year. But just for the sake of predicting: 

 

Hero Factory will probably last for awhile. There's a lot of potential still left in that building system and that world for them to exploit. (They are even starting to go with a bit of mystery in the latest thing, so Lego will have to stick to that arc long enough to close it up.) Probably 3-4 more years; could run longer if they continue to innovate the building system and make more interesting designs out of it. Otherwise, the appeal will probably wash out eventually.

 

Ninjago looks to be on it's last legs; it will be over in about a year or two. 

 

Chima also looks like something a bit short lived for the little kids. I think it will either fizzle quickly or stick around for eons.


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#30 Offline takua123

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Posted Apr 20 2013 - 04:51 PM

I honestly think Chima's purpose is to replace Ninjago as the "adventure theme" We've had Exo Force, Ninjago, and now Chima. It doesn't look like its gonna last long though. I think Hero Factory may be coming to a close as well, give or take 2-4 years.


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#31 Offline Aanchir: Rachira of Time

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Posted Apr 20 2013 - 05:32 PM

I honestly think Chima's purpose is to replace Ninjago as the "adventure theme" We've had Exo Force, Ninjago, and now Chima. It doesn't look like its gonna last long though. I think Hero Factory may be coming to a close as well, give or take 2-4 years.

It's not designed to replace Ninjago; that much has been confirmed by one of the set designers. But Exo-Force, Ninjago, and Chima were all "big bang" themes... that is to say, themes that were expected to make a big impact in their debut year and thus were given a wide range of sets and a sizable marketing budget despite being brand new. Other "big bang" themes include LEGO Friends (2012), LEGO Atlantis (2010), and LEGO Power Miners (2009).Also, 2-4 years is a LONG time as far as LEGO themes are concerned... I guarantee that if there are plans to end Hero Factory soon, then 2014 will be its last year (we know, at least, that it's continuing in 2014 because Advance and Ghost are working on a TV special for 2014 and TLG has posted job offers for designers for 2014 Hero Factory sets). They don't typically plan to discontinue a theme more than two years in advance as far as I know.

Edited by Aanchir: Rachira of Time, Apr 20 2013 - 05:37 PM.

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#32 Offline The Malicious Phantom

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Posted Apr 25 2013 - 09:43 AM

If LEGO does reinstate BIONICLE, they should do these things:

  • Convert all original limb pieces to the new and very successful HF limbs
  • Bring back the original Mata through Hordika sets and/or give them more flexibility
  •  New characters and movies.

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#33 Offline archivist_66

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Posted Apr 25 2013 - 12:05 PM

I don't care of Ninjago and Chima, so I think lego will keep HF at least 2-3 years.


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#34 Offline The Malicious Phantom

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Posted Apr 25 2013 - 12:24 PM

It's already been 2-3 years since LEGO released HF. -_-


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#35 Offline Aanchir: Rachira of Time

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Posted Apr 25 2013 - 01:57 PM

It's already been 2-3 years since LEGO released HF. -_-

I believe archivist_66 meant 2-3 years more. Which isn't wholly unreasonable, though three years from now is still pretty far off as far as LEGO themes are concerned. Anything could happen between now and then.

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#36 Offline Meiko

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Posted Apr 25 2013 - 02:39 PM

It's already been 2-3 years since LEGO released HF. -_-

I believe archivist_66 meant 2-3 years more. Which isn't wholly unreasonable, though three years from now is still pretty far off as far as LEGO themes are concerned. Anything could happen between now and then.

If Hero Factory will continue that long, according to interviews I've done and read, the 2015 sets will already be on the drawing board around this time.


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#37 Offline fishers64

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Posted May 10 2013 - 11:45 PM

Are there 2015 HF sets on the drawing board?


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#38 Offline Meiko

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Posted May 11 2013 - 08:18 AM

Are there 2015 HF sets on the drawing board?

The public wouldn't know yet. Most-likely there are—whether or not they reach production is based on the sales throughout the next year or so.


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#39 Offline Heir of the Chronicler

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Posted May 17 2013 - 12:10 PM

If LEGO does reinstate BIONICLE, they should do these things:

  • Convert all original limb pieces to the new and very successful HF limbs
  • Bring back the original Mata through Hordika sets and/or give them more flexibility
  •  New characters and movies.

 

For reasons discussed ad infinitum in other topics, I think we can say, with confidence, TLC will never reinstate Bionicle. That aside, I'd agree wholeheartedly! In fact, didn't everyone but Tahu end the storyline wearing Adaptive Armor? It'd be quite easy to adopt the HF standardized skeleton, as 'Adaptive Armor' is the excuse they gave for why the Toa Phantoka/Mistika looked nothing like their characters. On that note...

 

Whether or not Hero Factory is going to have the venerable run Bionicle had is debatable. Although it's Bionicle's predecessor, it's far from Bionicle's replacement as a monetary and enthusiast juggernaut. Regardless of how many years HF has left in it, I'd speculate we'll see HF's standardized skeleton template carry on for a long, long time. We've already seen it used for the Super Heroes and now Chima 'action figures'. By standardizing the build the way they have, kids can cross parts from one theme to another, which means kids buying Chima or Super Heroes action figures for parts even if they're Hero Factory fans. It's actually quite a sound business decision, IMO. (also, I'm pretty sure Aanchir already said all this, but... hey.)

 

As for the System themes, I'd reckon we can predict off what Aanchir's said... which lines were meant to be "big bang" lines? Which lines were "one off" lines? (I'm looking at you, Monster Hunters, Pharaoh's Quest, Lone Ranger) Which lines were meant to be "big bang" lines (I'm looking at you, Galidor) that nobody liked and quickly folded? (Yeah, I'm looking at you, too, Chima.)

 

- Heir


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#40 Offline Aanchir: Rachira of Time

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Posted May 17 2013 - 02:37 PM

Whether or not Hero Factory is going to have the venerable run Bionicle had is debatable. Although it's Bionicle's predecessor, it's far from Bionicle's replacement as a monetary and enthusiast juggernaut.

Well, I wouldn't say that for sure. Sure, Hero Factory hasn't been a huge bullet-point on TLG's annual reports like BIONICLE was in its early years, but let's not forget that BIONICLE came out when The LEGO Group was struggling financially, while Hero Factory has come out at a time when they are one of the most successful toy companies in the world and have had outstanding success with their traditional themes. So naturally Hero Factory isn't going to be as big a deal as BIONICLE was even if it's making just as much money.Also, BIONICLE was a major success for at least the first few years, but later on its importance to the LEGO company portfolio dwindled. Licensed themes and LEGO City regularly surpassed it in sales, and from 2005 onward there were no signs it experienced any meaningful growth. On the media front, fewer and fewer books were published each year as sales for them got lower and lower, up until 2010 when the LEGO Group was unable to get the final chapter book published in the United States or the final graphic novel published anywhere. From what I've seen, Hero Factory is definitely seeing at least as much success with its chapter books as BIONICLE did towards the end. Two chapter books came out last year and at least three are coming out this year.

As for the System themes, I'd reckon we can predict off what Aanchir's said... which lines were meant to be "big bang" lines? Which lines were "one off" lines? (I'm looking at you, Monster Hunters, Pharaoh's Quest, Lone Ranger) Which lines were meant to be "big bang" lines (I'm looking at you, Galidor) that nobody liked and quickly folded? (Yeah, I'm looking at you, too, Chima.) - Heir

I think it's unfair to say that "nobody likes" Chima. From what I've seen online it's extremely popular with kids. Maybe not as popular as Ninjago, maybe more popular. It's hard to say at this point, but overall I have seen a whole lot of positive reception for its sets, if not as much for its story. And who knows? Maybe fans of the story will start to emerge to a greater extent once more than three episodes of the show have aired. I was less than impressed with the episodes of Chima I've seen, but it's hardly the worst cartoon on TV and I can see how it could become quite popular with a younger audience.

Edited by Aanchir: Rachira of Time, May 17 2013 - 02:37 PM.

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