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Problems with the collectable minifigures?

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#1 meschepers


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Posted 30 June 2010 - 03:51 PM

On June 1st I placed a small order from S@H that contained 5 of the collectable minifigs.  The order arrived very quickly like it always does from LEGO, so I can't fault them for that.  However as I opened the collectable minifigs I discovered that the spaceman had no legs packed with him.  I promptly went to LEGO's website and put in a request to receive a set of legs through the parts replacement system, which has always helped me out in the past when a piece was missing from a new set.  After two weeks I hadn't heard anything back from them.  A few days ago I sent a follow-up e-mail to customer service and received a reply apologizing for the missing part and telling me that since the items are purchased "blindly" (meaning you can't see what is inside of it at time of purchase) that they are enacting a policy that dictates they will not replace any missing parts from the any of the collectable minifigs (despite the fact that they option was available on S@H's parts replacement).  

The thing that irked me the most was they they said I could take the item back to the store where I purchased it and get it exchanged.  If I had problems exchanging it then they would send me a set of plain white legs and a minifig keychain of my choice (total cost is far more than that of a collectable minifig, or even just it's legs).  The reason that irritated me was that this is three weeks after I sent the initial request for replacement parts.  The packaging and packing slip are long gone and there is no way I am paying shipping to return a $1.99 figure.  The nearest LEGO store is three hours away from where I am at and I can't the reasoning to go there to replace a single figure (which may not even be in stock and may not be the same figure if I am allowed to exchange it).  

I sent them an e-mail back along the same vein as this saying that I wouldn't be buying any of the second wave of figures from LEGO, but would instead go through secondary channels so I could be sure that I was getting the complete fig, even if I had to pay a little more to avoid all of this trouble.

The five that I ordered from S@H were the only ones that I bought because there were never any available in the city where I live (which is the second largest city in the state).  I checked several times a week at all of the usual places where LEGO products are sold and not once did I see a place where they should be or even any evidence that they had been there.  I got all of the figs I wanted through a trade, so I am not too upset about them not being available around me, I just wish I would have been able to get my hands on more of them.

I am just very upset in the quality of these products, WAY below the normal standards of TLC and the fact they were not available in my (and, I can assume, other markets).  I also know that there were people who were ordering the figs from S@H that got five of the same figs.  To me, it seems like there are a lot of problems with this particular item and hopefully LEGO has someone on the case of figuring out a way to get some of these glaring issues solved before the next wave comes out.

I am sure there is a thread about this someplace on here, but I can never find what I am looking for using the search function here (that and I am so stinking mad about this at the moment).
I've got three ships and sixty men,
A course for ports unread.
I'll stand at mast, let north winds blow
Till half of us are dead.

Land ho!

-Jim Morrison (The Doors)

#2 Mos_Eisley


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Posted 30 June 2010 - 04:21 PM

I'm sorry to hear about your bad experience.  However, I wouldn't say that what you've mentioned here is a "boatload" of problems.  It sounds like you're describing 2 problems - availability and quality control.  Granted it took a while, but it sounds like they've addressed the leg issue.  I'm not quite sure why you think you will have to pay for shipping to return the minifigure you have.  If they are sending you legs, they don't want the rest of the fig back, leaving you with just a set of legs.  You won't get the printed legs, but they did offer a keychain so that seems fair.  The LEGO store is most likely sold out anyway, so just tell them you tried and get the legs and keychain sent to you.  They've decided their policy is not to replace parts with this line so I would consider yourself fortunate to get this deal.  Quite a few people have had the wrong heads, missing parts, etc. and it doesn't sound like any of them have gotten this offer.  I was missing the hat for a Forestman, but I'm not too concerned about it since I heard their policy is not to deal with errors with these.  I'm not suggesting that these problems are ok, but LEGO has made a policy and as a whole, these particular issues aren't really that widespread.  

Availability is a whole different issue.  It's a completely new product, so not only was LEGO unsure of how it would do, retailers weren't sure if they should stock them.  LEGO can't be expected to produce millions of these without knowing how they will sell.  Series 2 will probably be a little hard to find again (since they've already been produced, but I would expect production to have been a little higher if they planned at all), but after that I would guess that we will be flooded with them in Series 3+.

#3 Big Cam

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Posted 30 June 2010 - 04:29 PM

I can feel your pain.

There is an existing thread that has already discussed his and has ongoing discussions about this.

#4 Rick


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Posted 30 June 2010 - 04:34 PM

I've heard of multiple people getting the exact same response. So, it indeed is 'policy' as they indicate.

View Postmeschepers, on 30 June 2010 - 03:51 PM, said:

The thing that irked me the most was they they said I could take the item back to the store where I purchased it and get it exchanged.  If I had problems exchanging it then they would send me a set of plain white legs and a minifig keychain of my choice (total cost is far more than that of a collectable minifig, or even just it's legs).
But surely you are going to make them ship you plain legs and a keychain of you choice?  :devil: Just pretend you went back to the store.

#5 ironjaw


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Posted 30 June 2010 - 07:09 PM

Personally I would not bother for all the hassle for a only $2 minifigure. But that's just me

#6 Marckeyh


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Posted 30 June 2010 - 07:37 PM

Bad luck...

Some people get extra parts, ie. 2 torsos.

#7 Carbohydrates


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Posted 30 June 2010 - 10:29 PM

I've noticed iffy quality control on 'em as well. These are actually the first Chinese LEGO I've owned, and it is actually more noticeable than I'd have expected. I have a Cowboy whose legs are too loose, and everyone's torsos and legs are more matte than the shiny 'standard' figs. This is particularly noticeable on black parts like the Magician's top hat and the Zombie's shovel, which are drastically different in texture than their standard production contemporaries such that I'm making it a point not to mix the parts. it's a bit of a sad state of affairs, but I know the cost of plastics manufacturing has gone up since 2005 or so (I work in an industry directly affected by this) and the figs would have to cost a bit more than $2 apiece to not be outsourced, so I suppose sacrifices must be made. I'd personally rather pay a bit more and get a bit more quality for it, though I understand there are those that wouldn't find $2.50 or $3.00 per fig justifiable.

Edited by Carbohydrates, 30 June 2010 - 10:30 PM.

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