As FT just “announced” a new product after some time, I think it’s a good time to resume the blog. So here’s some info on FT-51 Chomp!
Disclaimer: I live in Brazil, so buying from international stores in the US or Europe is not a good option because I end up paying double shipping (and higher price), so for some time now I’ve only been buying directly from China. If you live in the US or Europe, it’s probably better to get your products from stores in your country as you do not have to deal with shipping, customs, etc, and you also support your local store. You can get some discounts in buying in Taobao (in particularly if you buy a lot and use Taobao preorders) but it’s not the easiest thing to do – see this thread in the TFW – BUYING TRANSFORMERS ON TAOBAO
Finally, FT has “released” information on a new product. I say “released” because in the past Dalianjj (one of the FT owners and also FT rep on the TFW Forums) would put information there first, and now, as he’s not accessing TFW anymore with his usual ID (yeah, a lot of people check these things) and FT is laying low (they removed all their presence on the internet since September last year), the info (pictures of the final product with color) of FT-51 Chomp simply appeared out of nowhere on the internet (I tried to find one source, but could not find any, neither in the US or China, which is weird – anyway, FT does send these info to the distributors/store, so probably one of them acted as a first spreader).
Why it took so long for Chomp to appear?
FT had to redesign the character. Here is a comparison between the initial prototype and the pics from the final product (thank you Futureye in the TFW forums for the additional blue arrows on my original red arrow comparison).
Any other changes from the original prototype pictures?
It seems the sword is gone.
(I’m still wondering it the sword won’t detach from the tail. The changes on the pictures do not make it clear that the sword was incorporated in the design. The fact that none of the pictures show the sword also is not proof that it won’t come along)
Why the change in designation from FT-26 to FT-51?
I don’t know. Some people speculated that this was so stores could cancel their old preorders as the price has risen (see below), but most if not all legit store will honor their original PO (probably raising the price to the current one). Also, several stores I spoke to in China mentioned that they would not open POs again, as their allocated product limits were reached years ago.
What will happen with the FT-26 designation?
I don’t know.
What is the Chinese/Taobao price of Chomp?
The Chinese/Taobao (not Chinese retailers like SHowZ that are in China but sell using international prices) price of Chomp is confirmed to be:
- PO price: 820 Yuan/ 129 USD (as of June 1st, 2021);
- Retail price: more than 900, probably between 950/1050, but it can be even more as prices in China have been very near International prices for some later releases.
What is the international price of Chomp?
239,99 USD. This price is what the initial preorders are, and it’s expected to be kept the same or very near that.
What do these prices mean?
Well, as always, these prices keep confirming the usual equation:
International price = Chinese/Taobao PO price x 2
Also, the price on Chomp made me wonder if FT really raised the prices in general again (as they did in the beginning of last year when they mentioned they would raise the price and it ended up being some 20-30 USD per product).
The PO price for Chomp in China is basically the same as the PO price for Thomas from last year, however, Thomas is a triple changer, and it seemed to me that FT has, in general, price categories depending on “size” or “complexity”. Something like:
– Category price 1 – Minibots such as Hunk;
– Category price 2 – “Regular” bots such as Smokey;
– Category price 3 -Triple changers such as Thomas, and also “big bots”such as Sovereign and Quietus;
– Category price 4 – Dinobots;
– Category price 5 – Special, such as Phoenix and Terminus.
The problem at the moment is that Chomp seemed to be category price 2 (regular), but the price is the same as category price 3 (triple changer) from last year.
There might be some reasons for the category change (for this release only), but the other reason can be simply that FT did increase the prices all categories in general (and we don’t know yet, because in the past Dalianjj would announce this fact in TFW, but not anymore).
When will Chomp be released?
Expected December 2021, although we will only get confirmation near that date.
So Chomp has a 7 months delay from colored prototype review to release (if it will be indeed released on December) – you can see numbers for other releases in the first post of the FANSTOYS RELEASE SCHEDULE (PAST/PRESENT) on TFW. This sees like a quicker time than in the past. On the other hand, I was thinking that, due to FT laying low, they would do more like reissues and show the prototype very near release (2-3 months) but I guess that won’t be the case.
What is FT next new product release?
I don’t know, but recent information shows that it may be FT-21 Berserk (which may also have a designation change).
What this new release and price might mean for other releases?
Well, speculation mode here:
At least one Chinese store that I spoke to mentioned that the price for Berserk will be 1750 Yuan (276 USD), which is weird. For comparison, the price for Thomas was/is 140 (I think he might be mentioning retail price, not PO – and also retail Chinese price matching international prices. Right now, I would bet on 150 USD China PO, 275 USD China retail and 300-325 USD international).
There was a rumor this year, from different sources, that Lupus may be reissued. Reissuing Lupus seems like a great way to preview the Chomp release, so the fact that Chomp is going to be released do make this rumor seem more credible.
Jazz and Mirage and bots like them will probably have international prices of some 200 USD.
Bandit and the last Aerialbot – I don’t have any idea of release window, but with the price of Chomp, both last members of the combiners (which will come with combiner parts) will probably cost between 400-500 USD.
And that’s it for today!