Author Topic: Old School 6 Purchase Totals  (Read 2779 times)

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Offline bigtomi

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Re: Old School 6 Purchase Totals
« Reply #70 on: November 19, 2017, 10:35:16 AM »
...it doesn't seem like a $100 base set would get much traction.
I agree, a base set needs to be considerably lower than $100, like $40-$50. They should be able to produce these with a much lower overhead than parallels, sketches, etc. Hence, they should be proportionally a smaller percentage of the overall cost.

Offline RawGoo

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Re: Old School 6 Purchase Totals
« Reply #71 on: November 19, 2017, 11:11:47 AM »
I agree, a base set needs to be considerably lower than $100, like $40-$50. They should be able to produce these with a much lower overhead than parallels, sketches, etc. Hence, they should be proportionally a smaller percentage of the overall cost.

I agree that they should sell base sets at a lower price, especially since these aren't kiss-cut.


Offline Baked Bears

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Re: Old School 6 Purchase Totals
« Reply #72 on: November 19, 2017, 12:26:57 PM »
I agree, a base set needs to be considerably lower than $100, like $40-$50. They should be able to produce these with a much lower overhead than parallels, sketches, etc. Hence, they should be proportionally a smaller percentage of the overall cost.


Yes, $40 - $50 would be very nice and easy on the wallet, yet do you realistically expect Topps to do so?  I wish they would, but I doubt they will.  OS6 was produced for a select clientele.  We know that.  Topps knows that.  Why would they now even consider so a low price - considering the selfsame select clientele just shelled out $150 per set until they were entirely sold out?

Besides, if Topps were to put out a base 30 set for $40, that would come to $1.33 per card.  In my imagination, I can already hear an executive saying, "What?  $1.33 a card?  Er, no, I don't think so."

Just speculating, but if David Gross got $400 per painting x 30, that's $12,000 total.  12,000 divided by $40 equals 300 sets that would have to be sold just to cover the cost of the artist's work alone.  (If Dave's commission was more, great, but the numbers would change accordingly and the "300" number would increase, that is, even more sets would have to be sold.  If he got less, well, then we should all each send him a bag of peanuts, for that's what he's working for!)  And then there's material / manufacturing costs, "free" shipping, corporate overhead, the janitor emptying the waste baskets, etc. that must also be taken into consideration.  (I'm sure this list has to be much lengthier.)  Where would profit even begin to enter into the equation?  How many sets would realistically have to be sold to see this through?  And, the big question, would that many sets even sell?  Or would Topps experience another WP loss?

Ladies and gentlemen, I balk at the high prices just as much as any of you do.  Trust me on this.  The other day my right index finger was hovering over my mouse pad until I finally had to slam it down with my left hand to see my purchase through to completion.  (Kind of like the angel and devil on one's shoulders thing.)  At the same time, I could hear my account let out a long wail from the bank building down the street.  But we are the select clientele.  These are no longer the days of old.  The corner stores with 10 cents packs are a thing of the past, and we now find ourselves in a costly hobby.

Like Dave said in some earlier posts.  If we desire the more traditional WP, we are going to have to pay for them to be made especially for us.  It's kind of like us commissioning our own special set.  And commissions are never cheap.  Otherwise, it's the mass-market / PoD stuff.  And we are all familiar with what that is like.  Should I post a few titles images lest anyone has forgotten?
« Last Edit: November 19, 2017, 12:35:13 PM by Baked Bears »

Offline jeffcaff

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Re: Old School 6 Purchase Totals
« Reply #73 on: November 19, 2017, 01:49:20 PM »
I think everyone complaining about base set not be price at the $50 range is missing out right now.  Sets are available on Ebay below $50.00 including shipping so go there and make your purchase.

Offline DrSushi

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Re: Old School 6 Purchase Totals
« Reply #74 on: November 19, 2017, 02:10:29 PM »
I think everyone complaining about base set not be price at the $50 range is missing out right now.  Sets are available on Ebay below $50.00 including shipping so go there and make your purchase.
I just did! I wanted to support Dave and see more sets in the future, so I was debating plunking down $150 for the full set on Topps. However, as many others have stated, I'm not interested in variations or sketches and find selling the extras to be work that I don't enjoy. Now that Topps is sold out, my conscience is clear to get a full set of the images I'm interested in at what seems to be a reasonable price.

Topps, please add a simple full set without any extras as an option for future on line releases!

Offline JasonLiebig

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Re: Old School 6 Purchase Totals
« Reply #75 on: November 19, 2017, 02:24:48 PM »
I also just pulled the trigger on one of the ebay "simple sets", currently priced at $48.99 with free shipping.   Happy that the secondary market-ability of the extras (sketches, inserts, etc) makes this a bit of a de facto base set purchase option. 
Jason Liebig - Curator of CollectingCandy.com, a celebration of candy packaging, marketing and the people behind it all.

Offline JasonLiebig

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Re: Old School 6 Purchase Totals
« Reply #76 on: November 19, 2017, 02:56:23 PM »
Speculative mathematics aside, I'd be curious to know why Topps thinks the original (series 1) model of Old School no longer works?

Having worked on the publishing side of somewhat similar endeavors in the past (when I worked in marketing for DC Comics and editorial for Marvel), and as a reasonably active member here having watched the various Old School sets roll-outs since series one - it was plain and simple to me to see where Topps likely became quite twisted in their assessment of what can, and what cannot, reasonably work mathematically and economically, where Old School is concerned. 

I am assuming of course that Old School series 1 actually made mathematical and economic sense and was reasonably profitable or break-even to justify its existence.  And that it was a model that worked, considering the size of the hobby and the cost of manufacture, etc.   Going on that assumption (and if it's wrong, what follows all sort of falls apart);

Things clearly took a stupid turn when Topps started chasing the insert sketch dragon.  That is to say, they based their model on a grossly inflated demand that was never real to begin with.  It was based on a hyper-inflated secondary market for the inserted sketches.  That hyper-inflation (and inevitable collapse) of that secondary market in and of itself shouldn't have damaged the Old School model - in fact, it shouldn't have effected it (affected it?) at all.  The problem began when Topps changed their model to match it.  They opted to more-than-double their print run to meet said artificially inflated demand.  Quite simply, they overproduced.  And they continued to chase that sketch dragon, trying to find ways (inserts, parallels, etc) to keep it alive.  But it was never alive to begin with.  It was mirage.  A business model based on a mirage is doomed to fail. 

And so, based on the perception of a falling demand for Old School (an inaccurate and incorrect assessment since what was really happening was likely a return to realistic demand) and an inability to recreate that artificially-inflated demand (an accurate assessment) Topps determined that Old School was no longer a viable model.

Which leads us to where we are now. 

But to me, the provocative question is this:  Is Topps' determination accurate or have they just completely lost sight of their original model?   If the Old School model was indeed viable for series one, what evidence is there that it wouldn't or couldn't be viable now?  If the only evidence is the failure for subsequent series at meeting a briefly hyper-inflated demand, then that's a poorly considered conclusion. 


 

Yes, $40 - $50 would be very nice and easy on the wallet, yet do you realistically expect Topps to do so?  I wish they would, but I doubt they will.  OS6 was produced for a select clientele.  We know that.  Topps knows that.  Why would they now even consider so a low price - considering the selfsame select clientele just shelled out $150 per set until they were entirely sold out?

Besides, if Topps were to put out a base 30 set for $40, that would come to $1.33 per card.  In my imagination, I can already hear an executive saying, "What?  $1.33 a card?  Er, no, I don't think so."

Just speculating, but if David Gross got $400 per painting x 30, that's $12,000 total.  12,000 divided by $40 equals 300 sets that would have to be sold just to cover the cost of the artist's work alone.  (If Dave's commission was more, great, but the numbers would change accordingly and the "300" number would increase, that is, even more sets would have to be sold.  If he got less, well, then we should all each send him a bag of peanuts, for that's what he's working for!)  And then there's material / manufacturing costs, "free" shipping, corporate overhead, the janitor emptying the waste baskets, etc. that must also be taken into consideration.  (I'm sure this list has to be much lengthier.)  Where would profit even begin to enter into the equation?  How many sets would realistically have to be sold to see this through?  And, the big question, would that many sets even sell?  Or would Topps experience another WP loss?

Ladies and gentlemen, I balk at the high prices just as much as any of you do.  Trust me on this.  The other day my right index finger was hovering over my mouse pad until I finally had to slam it down with my left hand to see my purchase through to completion.  (Kind of like the angel and devil on one's shoulders thing.)  At the same time, I could hear my account let out a long wail from the bank building down the street.  But we are the select clientele.  These are no longer the days of old.  The corner stores with 10 cents packs are a thing of the past, and we now find ourselves in a costly hobby.

Like Dave said in some earlier posts.  If we desire the more traditional WP, we are going to have to pay for them to be made especially for us.  It's kind of like us commissioning our own special set.  And commissions are never cheap.  Otherwise, it's the mass-market / PoD stuff.  And we are all familiar with what that is like.  Should I post a few titles images lest anyone has forgotten?
Jason Liebig - Curator of CollectingCandy.com, a celebration of candy packaging, marketing and the people behind it all.

Offline Baked Bears

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Re: Old School 6 Purchase Totals
« Reply #77 on: November 19, 2017, 03:15:31 PM »
I think everyone complaining about base set not be price at the $50 range is missing out right now.  Sets are available on Ebay below $50.00 including shipping so go there and make your purchase.

Had I known base sets would sell on eBay a few days later for $50, I might have waited.  I didn't know, however, and couldn't have known.  So, being I already spent $150, I am not going to purchase a second base set simply because they now cost less.  Also, hopefully my initial purchase will help bolster the possibility of future sets.  In addition, if dealers are selling the base sets at $50, they must be hoping to make well over $100 on the remaining cards.  Being I purchased the "complete" set, that option is now open to me, as well, should I choose to pursue it.

Right now, one particular OS6 sketch card is at $99.99.
« Last Edit: November 19, 2017, 03:20:06 PM by Baked Bears »

Offline slamjim

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Re: Old School 6 Purchase Totals
« Reply #78 on: November 19, 2017, 04:57:20 PM »
Lots of good posts here the last few hours. Will try to address what I can.

From what I can see a lot of the $150 sets went to dealers which may actually turn out to be a great thing for everyone involved. Topps sells out the sets. People that want to get the set and some extras pick up the $150 option, dealers buy up the rest and build sets, Ludlow and tan sets and sell sketches to the sketch collectors. All of these sold at (hopefully) an appropriate price for the people who are interested in these individually. If the dealers sell their stuff well they will be back for another series. Another great thing about getting dealers involved is that since these are 7 day releases they will essentially be carrying on the sales well beyond the initial release.

I don't know how many sets they had to sell. I thought I had heard there were around 900 sketch cards but there may be more. If it's 900 then they would have 300 full sets. Going with what they paid me, postage, production and anything else I think if they sold out they did good enough for another series. I think the speed of it selling out will definitely spur them to do more including stuff with the postcards and I also think they are going to take the WP crowd more seriously (compared to GPK). If they apply what they learned from this to GPK they should also do another GPK Classics set with a smarter plan.

Baked Bears had it right. They are making sets specifically geared to people here and that's going to cost a lot more (in comparative terms) to a retail release. I think we are looking at the model (with some tweaks) that will be around going forward. I think they should just dump the $50 option they had and go with the $150 one. People in dire straight or that don't want the sketch cards or don't want to do collecting and trading of the Luds and tans can pick up their 30 card sets through the dealers at a cheaper rate. I will see what I can suggest to get the price down but it's their call. I don't know the numbers for how much it all costs so I'm not going to presume to tell them what they have to sell it for. It's their product in the end. I would like to get them to add some things though. Would like to see them drop the rough sketch cards and instead do puzzle/ checklists. Even if these aren't on the same stock as before. We can print them with the same stock look at least. I'd add autograph cards since that won't cost anything extra. If they can figure out how to do it (legally) also do Golden Tickets for some art (rather than me doing it) but I'll do it again next time if they can't.

So I'm thinking of seeing if they might be into doing a big set like this every 3 months (in between would be the regular holiday and event mini sets). Maybe Old School, then Postcards, Old School Through Time; thinking about doing sets from different eras like the 80s or the 50s or even the 30s. So imagine a 1930s style packaging for Planters as an example using the lingo, fonts and character designs from that era. I think that would be pretty cool. Lastly, Wacky Packages NOW (this would be an ANS style set). Four of these a year and the retail set. Thoughts?

Offline slamjim

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Re: Old School 6 Purchase Totals
« Reply #79 on: November 19, 2017, 05:04:11 PM »
Speculative mathematics aside, I'd be curious to know why Topps thinks the original (series 1) model of Old School no longer works?

Having worked on the publishing side of somewhat similar endeavors in the past (when I worked in marketing for DC Comics and editorial for Marvel), and as a reasonably active member here having watched the various Old School sets roll-outs since series one - it was plain and simple to me to see where Topps likely became quite twisted in their assessment of what can, and what cannot, reasonably work mathematically and economically, where Old School is concerned. 

I am assuming of course that Old School series 1 actually made mathematical and economic sense and was reasonably profitable or break-even to justify its existence.  And that it was a model that worked, considering the size of the hobby and the cost of manufacture, etc.   Going on that assumption (and if it's wrong, what follows all sort of falls apart);

Things clearly took a stupid turn when Topps started chasing the insert sketch dragon.  That is to say, they based their model on a grossly inflated demand that was never real to begin with.  It was based on a hyper-inflated secondary market for the inserted sketches.  That hyper-inflation (and inevitable collapse) of that secondary market in and of itself shouldn't have damaged the Old School model - in fact, it shouldn't have effected it (affected it?) at all.  The problem began when Topps changed their model to match it.  They opted to more-than-double their print run to meet said artificially inflated demand.  Quite simply, they overproduced.  And they continued to chase that sketch dragon, trying to find ways (inserts, parallels, etc) to keep it alive.  But it was never alive to begin with.  It was mirage.  A business model based on a mirage is doomed to fail. 

And so, based on the perception of a falling demand for Old School (an inaccurate and incorrect assessment since what was really happening was likely a return to realistic demand) and an inability to recreate that artificially-inflated demand (an accurate assessment) Topps determined that Old School was no longer a viable model.

Which leads us to where we are now. 

But to me, the provocative question is this:  Is Topps' determination accurate or have they just completely lost sight of their original model?   If the Old School model was indeed viable for series one, what evidence is there that it wouldn't or couldn't be viable now?  If the only evidence is the failure for subsequent series at meeting a briefly hyper-inflated demand, then that's a poorly considered conclusion. 


 

Old School 1 had a 1000 box run. Up for #2 to 2500 I think. By Old School 5 I believe it was 5000. That's a lot more boxes. I think a 1000 box run could work again but the price might be $150 or more for that at this point. A lot more costs involved when you have a box, checklists, wrappers and all the other stuff. What's the most people would pay for a box (guaranteeing at least one full set at least) in this market?

Offline Baked Bears

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Re: Old School 6 Purchase Totals
« Reply #80 on: November 19, 2017, 05:12:59 PM »
Things clearly took a stupid turn when Topps started chasing the insert sketch dragon.
 

So do you suggest eliminating the sketches entirely?

Offline slamjim

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Re: Old School 6 Purchase Totals
« Reply #81 on: November 19, 2017, 05:28:27 PM »
So do you suggest eliminating the sketches entirely?

That's not going to happen. There are still plenty of people that enjoy finding them and chasing them.

Offline Baked Bears

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Re: Old School 6 Purchase Totals
« Reply #82 on: November 19, 2017, 05:57:57 PM »
I'd add autograph cards since that won't cost anything extra. If they can figure out how to do it (legally) also do Golden Tickets for some art (rather than me doing it) but I'll do it again next time if they can't.

So I'm thinking of seeing if they might be into doing a big set like this every 3 months (in between would be the regular holiday and event mini sets). Maybe Old School, then Postcards, Old School Through Time; thinking about doing sets from different eras like the 80s or the 50s or even the 30s. So imagine a 1930s style packaging for Planters as an example using the lingo, fonts and character designs from that era. I think that would be pretty cool. Lastly, Wacky Packages NOW (this would be an ANS style set). Four of these a year and the retail set. Thoughts?

I'd love to see "Old School Through Time" - 80s, 50s, 30s, and so on.  I think the 80s would go over well.  Not sure about the other decades/eras, however.  Personally, I enjoy seeing the evolution of products, and I know for a fact that some other Forum members do, as well.  But would everybody enjoy these other decades?  Will they be familiar with the products?  Bear in mind that WP, particularly the Original and Old School series, ring a bell of familiarity and evoke a certain sense of nostalgia with collectors and fans who grew up with the respective parodied products during the 70s and 80s.  Would products from the 50s ring that same bell, though?  I can see people being familiar with Mr. Peanut - he transcends the decades - but what about the Hubley Atomic Disintegrator cap pistol?  It would definitely be cool to parody a product such as this, but would it be embraced and/or appreciated say, as much as Cap'n Crunch?  I'd suggest putting out feelers to hear what others have to say.  Again, though, I would love to see such sets with their retro graphics, lettering, and whatnot.



Again, speaking for myself, I would love to see the return of postcards.  Due to their larger format, the artwork on these really shines.  Kind of like mini posters.  Not huge sets, though, but small sets reasonably priced.  (I don't know if everybody can lay out $150 every other month or so, and it would be a financial "breather" to have something less costly in between.)

"Wacky Packages NOW" is a catchy title.  (With maybe a year after it, for example, "2018," or "Series 1" to tell one series from another.)  Would such a series be mass market retail?  And, if so, would said series still feature real products, thick black borders, great artwork, etc. - those things that we on this forum have come to admire and appreciate, that is, will it lean toward the traditional WP spirit and feel?  Also, would it feature a variety of artists?

On another note...

Although many here on the forum are enthusiastic about sketches, parallels, etc., many others are not.  As you mentioned, dealers played a pivotal role in OS6 sales, and my guess would be that the sketches, parallels, etc. played a pivotal role in their decision making.  Thus will future sets - "Wacky Packages NOW," "Old School Through Time," etc. - continue to contain the same peripheral cards?

Oh, and the "Golden Ticket" sounds like an interesting idea, however could it be random and not based exclusively upon an individual's number of purchases?  Granted, the more one buys, the better one's chance, but you know what I mean.
« Last Edit: November 19, 2017, 06:09:23 PM by Baked Bears »

Offline slamjim

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Re: Old School 6 Purchase Totals
« Reply #83 on: November 19, 2017, 06:17:08 PM »
I'd love to see "Old School Through Time" - 80s, 50s, 30s, and so on.  I think the 80s would go over well.  Not sure about the other decades/eras, however.  Personally, I enjoy seeing the evolution of products, and I know for a fact that some other Forum members do, as well.  But would everybody enjoy these other decades?  Will they be familiar with the products?  Bear in mind that WP, particularly the Original and Old School series, ring a bell of familiarity and evoke a certain sense of nostalgia with collectors and fans who grew up with the respective parodied products during the 70s and 80s.  Would products from the 50s ring that same bell, though?  I can see people being familiar with Mr. Peanut - he transcends the decades - but what about the Hubley Atomic Disintegrator cap pistol?  It would definitely be cool to parody a product such as this, but would it be embraced and/or appreciated say, as much as Cap'n Crunch?  I'd suggest putting out feelers to hear what others have to say.  Again, though, I would love to see such sets with their retro graphics, lettering, and whatnot.

Again, speaking for myself, I would love to see the return of postcards.  Due to their larger format, the artwork on these really shines.  Kind of like mini posters.  Not huge sets, though, but small sets reasonably priced.  (I don't know if everybody can lay out $150 every other month or so, and it would be a financial "breather" to have something less costly in between.)

"Wacky Packages NOW" is a catchy title.  (With maybe a year after it, for example, "2018," or "Series 1.")  Would such a series be mass market retail?  And, if so, would said series still feature real products, thick black borders, great artwork, etc. - those things that we on this forum have come to admire and appreciate, that is, will it lean more toward the traditional WP spirit and feel?  Also, would it feature a variety of artists?

On another note...

Although many here on the forum are enthusiastic about sketches, parallels, etc., many others are not.  As you mentioned, dealers played a pivotal role in OS6 sales, and my guess would be that the sketches, parallels, etc. played a pivotal role in their decision making.  Thus will future sets - "Wacky Packages NOW," "Old School Through Time," etc. - continue to contain the same peripheral cards?

Oh, and the "Golden Ticket" sounds like an interesting idea, however could it be random and not based exclusively upon an individual's number of purchases?  Granted, the more one buys, the better one's chance, but you know what I mean.

Something like the 30s set would probably be a one shot but there is more than enough famous products that were around during that era to use. Skippy, Jell-O, Pepsi, Coca Cola, Planters, Bordens, Wise Chips, Campfire Marshmallows, Baby Ruth, Erector sets, Monopoly, Lionel Trains, Wheaties, Kool-Aid, Campbells, etc.

Hell, could just do a version of WP series one in 1930 retro packaging and fonts.

I'd stick with Wacky Packages NOW series 1 and so on as the name. Would be ANS style. Good old WPs with fat borders, modern products, NO entertainment stuff, NO fake products. No, not mass market. This is online. Like I said in the original post. Every 3 months a new online set. We could drop one of these and make it every 4 months if that is too much but I like the four sets as ideas. There would also be one retail set a year like the current ones they are doing. That's not really part of this discussion as it's not geared towards this group exclusively and I doubt we'd have any say in what they are doing with those.

Yes, I would expect any other online series to use some of the same chase cards and extras.

Yes, Golden Tickets randomly if Topps does it. There are legal issues involving these types of contests when it deals with packs so I would not hold your breath on that one.


Offline Baked Bears

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Re: Old School 6 Purchase Totals
« Reply #84 on: November 19, 2017, 06:43:19 PM »
Thanks.  Sounds good, for the most part.  (Still not interested in the chase cards, though.)

I understand that the "Old School Through Time" series will probably be one shots.  Fine with me and look forward to them.  If you do a 30 card set, perhaps you could throw in 2 or 3 "oddball" products, as well, for us few aficionados - such as a ray gun or the Gilbert "Prospect for Uranium!" Geiger Counter?

Oh, and really sock it to those Campbell Kids, if you can!  They've escaped the WP radar for far too long!

One last thing, please.  Topps might be tempted to throw "Old School Through Time" through the sepia process.  Please, good Lord, no!  Do what you must to convince them to stick with the original colors.  The products were never - and never meant to be - rendered in sepia.  That would take so, so much away from them!  I, for one, would like to be able to appreciate the original color of the original products - not somebody's idea of what they might look like aged.
« Last Edit: November 19, 2017, 06:50:59 PM by Baked Bears »

Offline JasonLiebig

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Re: Old School 6 Purchase Totals
« Reply #85 on: November 19, 2017, 08:38:18 PM »
So do you suggest eliminating the sketches entirely?

No.  I'm not suggesting that at all.  Is that what came across? 

The sketches weren't the problem - they were a part of Old School Series 1 and I believe that it worked just fine.  It was Topps not recognizing that the hyper increase in demand for the product was not, in fact, sustainable because it had zero to do with people wanting to own that many more sketches or that much more Old School product.  It had everything to do with people wanting to make a profit on sketches on the secondary market.  And frankly, it was pretty obvious because I've seen this before - most of us have.  I happen to have seen it from the other side of the wall.  But Topps went ahead and shaped the ensuing product not around what fans wanted or the intrinsic qualities in the product itself, but upon a temporary frenzy around the prices of sketches on the secondary market. 

When they changed the product to meet that, they not only flooded the market and ultimately caused themselves to illogically sour on the original model, but they actually destroyed the single artificial quality that had driven the hyper demand in the first place.  It was doomed to fail. 

The original model was fine, as far as I could tell. 

Although Dave, I have to ask, if you're saying that the original model would now require a $150 per box price, I'd be curious about why that is?  What has changed about the elements involved that made $50 a box viable then and now it's 300% more?  That seems...surprising.
Jason Liebig - Curator of CollectingCandy.com, a celebration of candy packaging, marketing and the people behind it all.

Offline JasonLiebig

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Re: Old School 6 Purchase Totals
« Reply #86 on: November 19, 2017, 08:50:12 PM »
This is not an obviously bad idea.  And it's incredibly tempting.  But I gotta tell ya, as a vintage packaging historian of sorts, I think it'd be a stretch to say this is the right way to go. 

I feel as though there is, at best, a forgetfulness and at worst a fundamental misunderstanding of what Wacky Packages were/are and how they functioned and why they were successful to begin with.  Not saying that they can't evolve, but if you evolve by casting away those underlying values, I think you get some of what is considered abortive ideas - some of which we've now experienced. 

I was having lunch recently with a friend of mine, the ballplayer who invented Big League Chew bubblegum.  And he tells me how over the years he was often encouraged to stretch the brand out to other confectionery products.  Big League Ice Cream, etc etc... And he was of the mind that "you stick with who brought you to the dance".  Over the years, his philosophy has proven out to be the right one.   But I look at that statement and would apply it to mean that it's about truly understanding what brought you to the dance, so to speak.

To put that into Old School terms... the reason why people were excited about the first Old School series was that it was a return to roots and format, and quality.  It was not about colored sketches selling for more than original paintings.  But it did become about that, and that was so clearly its undoing.

I'd love to see "Old School Through Time" - 80s, 50s, 30s, and so on.  I think the 80s would go over well.  Not sure about the other decades/eras, however.  Personally, I enjoy seeing the evolution of products, and I know for a fact that some other Forum members do, as well.  But would everybody enjoy these other decades?  Will they be familiar with the products?  Bear in mind that WP, particularly the Original and Old School series, ring a bell of familiarity and evoke a certain sense of nostalgia with collectors and fans who grew up with the respective parodied products during the 70s and 80s.  Would products from the 50s ring that same bell, though?  I can see people being familiar with Mr. Peanut - he transcends the decades - but what about the Hubley Atomic Disintegrator cap pistol?  It would definitely be cool to parody a product such as this, but would it be embraced and/or appreciated say, as much as Cap'n Crunch?  I'd suggest putting out feelers to hear what others have to say.  Again, though, I would love to see such sets with their retro graphics, lettering, and whatnot.



Again, speaking for myself, I would love to see the return of postcards.  Due to their larger format, the artwork on these really shines.  Kind of like mini posters.  Not huge sets, though, but small sets reasonably priced.  (I don't know if everybody can lay out $150 every other month or so, and it would be a financial "breather" to have something less costly in between.)

"Wacky Packages NOW" is a catchy title.  (With maybe a year after it, for example, "2018," or "Series 1" to tell one series from another.)  Would such a series be mass market retail?  And, if so, would said series still feature real products, thick black borders, great artwork, etc. - those things that we on this forum have come to admire and appreciate, that is, will it lean toward the traditional WP spirit and feel?  Also, would it feature a variety of artists?

On another note...

Although many here on the forum are enthusiastic about sketches, parallels, etc., many others are not.  As you mentioned, dealers played a pivotal role in OS6 sales, and my guess would be that the sketches, parallels, etc. played a pivotal role in their decision making.  Thus will future sets - "Wacky Packages NOW," "Old School Through Time," etc. - continue to contain the same peripheral cards?

Oh, and the "Golden Ticket" sounds like an interesting idea, however could it be random and not based exclusively upon an individual's number of purchases?  Granted, the more one buys, the better one's chance, but you know what I mean.
Jason Liebig - Curator of CollectingCandy.com, a celebration of candy packaging, marketing and the people behind it all.

Offline Slaytex99

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Re: Old School 6 Purchase Totals
« Reply #87 on: November 20, 2017, 09:29:21 AM »
Although Dave, I have to ask, if you're saying that the original model would now require a $150 per box price, I'd be curious about why that is?  What has changed about the elements involved that made $50 a box viable then and now it's 300% more?  That seems...surprising.

That's exactly what I was thinking.

Offline slamjim

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Re: Old School 6 Purchase Totals
« Reply #88 on: November 20, 2017, 11:15:52 AM »
Making 5000 boxes is cheaper than producing 300 by a lot. No way they would make 5000 boxes again. Plus, they have some kind of exclusive with a printing company which is way more expensive.

Don't know. The cost to pay for the art and everything else after it is a lot of money. They have to be completely on point to make money on the online sets. The nice thing for them when you compare the Boxes Vs. The New Format is that they produce exactly what sells this way. The exception is the sketch card part which next time I'm sure they will produce many more of. Don't put the series number on the sketch card and they won't have to worry about having too many of them ever. With boxes you have a good chance of having piles left over.

Offline JasonLiebig

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Re: Old School 6 Purchase Totals
« Reply #89 on: November 20, 2017, 11:45:16 AM »
Yikes.  When I was working on the X-Men, Marvel had an 80% exclusive deal with an Irish color separations house.  Meaning 80% of the line how to have their digital coloring done by that one company.  It was awful, and meant that only a small percentage of books would get the gold treatment - meaning hiring top notch freelancers to do the digital colors (and this was pretty early on in the digital coloring/separations era).   The rest of the books ranged from having digital colors that were "decent" to "awful". 

Now, the question I always asked then was why?  Why did we have that terrible exclusivity deal?  Maybe there was a good business decision underneath it but I was always suspicious that someone personally got a kickback.  And even now, nearly twenty years later, I think its still likely.  There were a number of corporate level goings on that seemed to fall into that odd category at the time.. 

Plus, they have some kind of exclusive with a printing company which is way more expensive.

Jason Liebig - Curator of CollectingCandy.com, a celebration of candy packaging, marketing and the people behind it all.

Offline DrDeal

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Re: Old School 6 Purchase Totals
« Reply #90 on: November 20, 2017, 11:49:26 AM »
So no restock today. Will they be changing it to “Sold Out”?

Offline JasonLiebig

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Re: Old School 6 Purchase Totals
« Reply #91 on: November 20, 2017, 11:51:31 AM »
Dave,

I think this all makes sense and is certainly true, but the thing is, and the mystery to me is, it was certainly true however many years ago when the model for Old School was first devised.  None of these other factors (costs being high, etc) would seem to have changed.  Well, one could expect some level of change, but a 300% increase in those factors? 

And if I may step into the realm of speculation:  maybe the original Old School series was a vanity project of sorts championed internally by Mike Jasperson, and one that didn't require a certain profit margin to be approved within Topps at the time.  I did get the sense back during the first and second series that they were not the most profitable sets.  But now perhaps there is not an internal champion for the series within Topps and Topps perhaps now has guidelines that require projects of this nature meet certain profit percentage criteria.  Those are things I might speculate on and that could result in what we are seeing.  They are more reasonable guesses than the cost of printing/art ballooning by 300%....  But I'm just guessing...

Making 5000 boxes is cheaper than producing 300 by a lot. No way they would make 5000 boxes again. Plus, they have some kind of exclusive with a printing company which is way more expensive.

Don't know. The cost to pay for the art and everything else after it is a lot of money. They have to be completely on point to make money on the online sets. The nice thing for them when you compare the Boxes Vs. The New Format is that they produce exactly what sells this way. The exception is the sketch card part which next time I'm sure they will produce many more of. Don't put the series number on the sketch card and they won't have to worry about having too many of them ever. With boxes you have a good chance of having piles left over.
Jason Liebig - Curator of CollectingCandy.com, a celebration of candy packaging, marketing and the people behind it all.

Offline BumChex

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Re: Old School 6 Purchase Totals
« Reply #92 on: November 20, 2017, 12:00:00 PM »
I ordered a set on the 16th. Checked today for tracking info and the order isn't on my list of products purchased.  >(
Looks like there are sets available for $50 on ebay. Hopefully Topps will update their website with more stock. I can't imagine these running out this fast at this price point.
« Last Edit: November 20, 2017, 12:03:08 PM by BumChex »

Offline JasonLiebig

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Re: Old School 6 Purchase Totals
« Reply #93 on: November 20, 2017, 12:04:54 PM »
Agreed.  But it would be a heck of an endorsement for Dave's work and the Old School product if they did.  :-)

I can't imagine these running out this fast at this price point.
Jason Liebig - Curator of CollectingCandy.com, a celebration of candy packaging, marketing and the people behind it all.

Offline slamjim

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Re: Old School 6 Purchase Totals
« Reply #94 on: November 20, 2017, 12:12:11 PM »
I ordered a set on the 16th. Checked today for tracking info and the order isn't on my list of products purchased.  >(
Looks like there are sets available for $50 on ebay. Hopefully Topps will update their website with more stock. I can't imagine these running out this fast at this price point.

It is completely sold out. I asked this morning. Are you able to call and check on the order?

Offline slamjim

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Re: Old School 6 Purchase Totals
« Reply #95 on: November 20, 2017, 12:13:08 PM »
Yikes.  When I was working on the X-Men, Marvel had an 80% exclusive deal with an Irish color separations house.  Meaning 80% of the line how to have their digital coloring done by that one company.  It was awful, and meant that only a small percentage of books would get the gold treatment - meaning hiring top notch freelancers to do the digital colors (and this was pretty early on in the digital coloring/separations era).   The rest of the books ranged from having digital colors that were "decent" to "awful". 

Now, the question I always asked then was why?  Why did we have that terrible exclusivity deal?  Maybe there was a good business decision underneath it but I was always suspicious that someone personally got a kickback.  And even now, nearly twenty years later, I think its still likely.  There were a number of corporate level goings on that seemed to fall into that odd category at the time..

Yeah, I don't know the details but it sounds like an awful deal and it's really hurting some of the products.

Offline slamjim

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Re: Old School 6 Purchase Totals
« Reply #96 on: November 20, 2017, 12:16:27 PM »
Dave,

I think this all makes sense and is certainly true, but the thing is, and the mystery to me is, it was certainly true however many years ago when the model for Old School was first devised.  None of these other factors (costs being high, etc) would seem to have changed.  Well, one could expect some level of change, but a 300% increase in those factors? 

And if I may step into the realm of speculation:  maybe the original Old School series was a vanity project of sorts championed internally by Mike Jasperson, and one that didn't require a certain profit margin to be approved within Topps at the time.  I did get the sense back during the first and second series that they were not the most profitable sets.  But now perhaps there is not an internal champion for the series within Topps and Topps perhaps now has guidelines that require projects of this nature meet certain profit percentage criteria.  Those are things I might speculate on and that could result in what we are seeing.  They are more reasonable guesses than the cost of printing/art ballooning by 300%....  But I'm just guessing...

Keep in mind any speculation from me is just that and is pretty much on the same level and anyone else's speculation (well, I can probably speculate a little better with some inside knowledge).

Yes, when Mike and I were running the ship it was at Toppsvault and they had way different expectations for it (and we had way more latitude to do what we wanted). It moved over to the regular Topps area for series 3 and expectations were much different. I think you are on the nose with that.

Offline JasonLiebig

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Re: Old School 6 Purchase Totals
« Reply #97 on: November 20, 2017, 12:27:34 PM »
Congratulations, Dave! 

Whatever misgivings there may be for the format and delivery this time around, selling out can only be taken a sign of success for yourself and Old School and an encouraging note for the underlying concept going forward.  I for one hope you are given more room to flex the format next time around and one would think it would be reasonable to grant you that, given this successful release. 

At any rate, it would seem to at least assure that there will be an Old School 7, in some form or another.  And that's worth smiling about and worth celebrating. 

It is completely sold out. I asked this morning.
Jason Liebig - Curator of CollectingCandy.com, a celebration of candy packaging, marketing and the people behind it all.

Offline g.u.e.s.t.

  • Posts: 48
Re: Old School 6 Purchase Totals
« Reply #98 on: November 20, 2017, 12:54:27 PM »
Lots of good posts here the last few hours. Will try to address what I can.

From what I can see a lot of the $150 sets went to dealers which may actually turn out to be a great thing for everyone involved. Topps sells out the sets. People that want to get the set and some extras pick up the $150 option, dealers buy up the rest and build sets, Ludlow and tan sets and sell sketches to the sketch collectors. All of these sold at (hopefully) an appropriate price for the people who are interested in these individually. If the dealers sell their stuff well they will be back for another series. Another great thing about getting dealers involved is that since these are 7 day releases they will essentially be carrying on the sales well beyond the initial release.

I don't know how many sets they had to sell. I thought I had heard there were around 900 sketch cards but there may be more. If it's 900 then they would have 300 full sets. Going with what they paid me, postage, production and anything else I think if they sold out they did good enough for another series. I think the speed of it selling out will definitely spur them to do more including stuff with the postcards and I also think they are going to take the WP crowd more seriously (compared to GPK). If they apply what they learned from this to GPK they should also do another GPK Classics set with a smarter plan.

Baked Bears had it right. They are making sets specifically geared to people here and that's going to cost a lot more (in comparative terms) to a retail release. I think we are looking at the model (with some tweaks) that will be around going forward. I think they should just dump the $50 option they had and go with the $150 one. People in dire straight or that don't want the sketch cards or don't want to do collecting and trading of the Luds and tans can pick up their 30 card sets through the dealers at a cheaper rate. I will see what I can suggest to get the price down but it's their call. I don't know the numbers for how much it all costs so I'm not going to presume to tell them what they have to sell it for. It's their product in the end. I would like to get them to add some things though. Would like to see them drop the rough sketch cards and instead do puzzle/ checklists. Even if these aren't on the same stock as before. We can print them with the same stock look at least. I'd add autograph cards since that won't cost anything extra. If they can figure out how to do it (legally) also do Golden Tickets for some art (rather than me doing it) but I'll do it again next time if they can't.

So I'm thinking of seeing if they might be into doing a big set like this every 3 months (in between would be the regular holiday and event mini sets). Maybe Old School, then Postcards, Old School Through Time; thinking about doing sets from different eras like the 80s or the 50s or even the 30s. So imagine a 1930s style packaging for Planters as an example using the lingo, fonts and character designs from that era. I think that would be pretty cool. Lastly, Wacky Packages NOW (this would be an ANS style set). Four of these a year and the retail set. Thoughts?


I really like the idea of doing sets from different eras. 20's - 60's would be cool!

Offline DrDeal

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Re: Old School 6 Purchase Totals
« Reply #99 on: November 20, 2017, 01:26:23 PM »
Dave,

  Congrats on the sell out! Did you ever get an answer from Topps about making it so those who purchased Two $150 Sets will get a complete set of Pencil Sketches since each set comes with 15/30.

Please advise.   Thanks,  Andrew

Offline slamjim

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Re: Old School 6 Purchase Totals
« Reply #100 on: November 20, 2017, 01:34:38 PM »

I really like the idea of doing sets from different eras. 20's - 60's would be cool!

Yeah, that would be really fun. The lingo from the different eras would add more good puns into the mix and the art from anything below the 70s was really interesting. An 80s set would also be fun. They missed some good products.

Offline slamjim

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Re: Old School 6 Purchase Totals
« Reply #101 on: November 20, 2017, 01:36:37 PM »
Dave,

  Congrats on the sell out! Did you ever get an answer from Topps about making it so those who purchased Two $150 Sets will get a complete set of Pencil Sketches since each set comes with 15/30.

Please advise.   Thanks,  Andrew

Still waiting on that question. Will LYK

Offline Scheres

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Re: Old School 6 Purchase Totals
« Reply #102 on: November 20, 2017, 01:55:45 PM »
Bring on Old School 7!!!

Offline BumChex

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Re: Old School 6 Purchase Totals
« Reply #103 on: November 20, 2017, 10:38:02 PM »
Yeah, I don't know the details but it sounds like an awful deal and it's really hurting some of the products.
I sent in a support ticket. When I purchased I still had a series 1 binder canvas in my queue. So when I purchased it said I spent $225. For some reason the canvas was still on my shopping cart. I asked them to cancel the canvas. I just got an email this morning saying they are not sure of my order #. I’m guessing since I said to drop the canvas someone killed the whole order. I’ll find a set somewhere. Good job on the set and the sales!

Re: Old School 6 Purchase Totals
« Reply #104 on: November 21, 2017, 06:27:50 AM »
Base sets are readily available for about $50.
And Matt has listed the chase sets at $100 for sketch and $450 for each back type.
« Last Edit: November 21, 2017, 06:36:34 AM by Fanatical_and_Sickly »

 

anything