Alex Posts

Heads up HW Collectors the new HW Newsletter Casting Guide 2008-2017 is here!

Exciting news Hot Wheels fans, we’re partnering with Jim Garbaczewski, publisher of the Hot Wheels Newsletter and Co-Author of Tomart’s Price Guide to Hot Wheels to bring you another amazing resource for your collection. You’ll find the official announcement below –

So I have some exciting news for all those fans of the Tomart Guides who love and miss them. Drumroll, please, because I’m pleased to announce that the Hot Wheels Newsletter is going to be publishing a NEW price guide that covers the period since the last Tomart guide. 

Over the past decade, I’ve continued to work hard logging details of all the latest Hot Wheels releases; model details, photos, colors, variations and, most importantly, pricing information! I’ve been looking for a way to be able to share this with you all in book form for some time, and now, thanks to the folks at hobbyDB who’ve formed a joint venture with me to share the upfront publishing costs, that’s going to become a reality. 

The new HW Newsletter Casting Guide to Hot Wheels will have all the same great images and information you’ve come to expect, and will cover ALL known models released between 2008 and 2017. It’s set to ship in January for $34.99 and is now available for pre-order for $24.99, exclusively in the Hot Wheels Newsletter store, so order yours today!

Pre-order Now

We’re super excited to be involved with this project and will keep you all posted with any updates from Jim!

Going the Extra Mile – Transmedia Storytelling

Das_MittelElton Lin is a CS college student from Alhambra that is enamored by different tactics toy companies engage in to ascribe integrity to their properties. He spent so long chasing a childhood fictional narrative by Mattel that he found a real and uplifting story buried beneath it. 

 

The superior man understands what is right; the inferior man understands what will sell – Confucius

Companies should never have to compromise their integrity in a bid for survival. Unfortunately, some do. In this day and age, toy companies grapple to find a common thread with the hordes of children much more interested in handheld electronics. It is true that companies must prioritize earning profits in order to stay afloat, but keeping the masses pleased rings equally true. It is universally understood that toy companies prioritize catering to the younger demographic, but consequently, older fans may struggle to indulge in the brand as well. With the rise of 3rd party offerings or zealous customizers filling the void for fans, retention of brand loyalty has never been tougher.

As such, it makes it all the more gratifying when a company goes the extra mile and delivers universally enjoyable content through a multitude of platforms. Such a labor of love can be explored through the lens of transmedia storytelling.

So what is transmedia? Think back to a favorite childhood series of yours. Did you get to watch your heroes on TV, then go out to the stores to buy action figures of them? Spend your free time visiting official websites or fansites such as the one you’re currently on to brush up on your knowledge about their universe? What about playing video games or comics that weren’t necessarily canon to their source material? How about fast food or in-store promos? If you answered yes to any of these, you had been met with transmedia, the practice of telling a story across different platforms.

But adopting transmedia is no walk in the park. Great transmedia calls for capabilities of:

-expansion. Being able to carry a story through new mediums as well as reach the target audience is crucial to transmedia.

-engagement. Consumers will not only be enraptured by the fictional world, but also come to relate to characters and examine their own human condition.

-embellishment. Fictional worlds must be convincing to their audiences. The more a universe is fleshed out, the more chances the audience can perceive the universe and its ideals as feasible.

-order. The storylines must follow a pattern with how it is accessed through different digital mediums.

-opinions. It is important for creators not to neglect any of their characters by allowing the audience to witness characters evolve through unique feelings to situations and daily life.

-operation. Every message is another piece of the puzzle that ties into the storyline. The creators, what did they leave for us?

In short, transmedia storytelling challenges creators to put out content on a new plane of superiority in the most unique configurations / re-imaginings of the brand’s identity. Famous examples: a company all about plastic construction toys branched out their mythology and storytelling capability with a theme of unworldly mechs, and a company with unworldly mechs painted a new direction through robots that turned into organic animals.

 

Everything must be able to fall back on another. An overarching theme must manifest, which will contribute to the brand’s image. Obviously, it is important that the message reflects positively on how consumers perceive the brand.

Hot Wheels is recognized by its consumers for its presence/domination on the store shelves.

The message may be prevalent in some contexts. Who can forget the owner of the slogan “Just Do It” as well as its highly aspirational message? Or even “I’m Lovin’ It”, the shot at good vibes through pop culture? But what happens if a company’s brand suffers from an existential crisis or a search for new meaning? What can personify a brand entity and reinvigorate it? How do you continue a legacy of that caliber?

In 2002, Hot Wheels was faced with such a dilemma. The company was thinking of how to celebrate its upcoming 35th anniversary. What started out as a challenge became one of Hot Wheels’s most wholehearted attempts into the analysis and redefinition of its own identity. Back down they didn’t. Hot Wheels went in guns blazing with the mythology of Highway 35 World Race and AcceleRacers (see the respective hobbyDB Highway 35 World Race & AcceleRacers pages for how much investment these series got). The creatives at Hot Wheels took what could have been a disaster into a demonstration of spirit. Not only did Hot Wheels reclaim its identity but also earned new merits. Hot Wheels roared on with new life and an extension of its legacy.

Highway 35 and AcceleRacers, bless them, have been gone for more than 10 years. So what’s the worth in dredging up the past? Why do people still demand its renewal? What’s the point of me getting on my knees and begging hobbyDB to allow me a guest post on their blog?

Simply put, series like these are the bread and butter for the path towards adulthood. Series like these merit the attention and praise for being testaments to creative storytelling and concept development. People think back fondly to Highway 35 and AcceleRacers because those were milestones in Hot Wheels history, times where Hot Wheels became more than just their cars.

These type of series continue to play a part in this uncertain future, where minds like Genndy Tartakovsky do not believe current Western animation is at its full potential. But most importantly, they persist as icons of hope. They strike a void that cannot be otherwise filled, and allow us to grow even when our minds are at ease. They serve as bildungsromans, the guiding lights towards our catharses and the search for value in our everyday lives.

Throughout the years, they’ve always remained larger than life.

Who knew that something disguised as a kid-friendly TV series could conceal so much meaning?

To watch the full video on which this article is based, visit https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZWjNOrLhPqI

Arrrrrr! Are There Treasure Hunts in Your Booty? Find Their Values on hobbyDB Now!

Treasure is usually hidden, but thanks to our price guide, its value won’t be – at least, not if it’s the Hot Wheels kind!

Over the last few months, we’ve been working hard to make our price guide a one-of-a-kind resource and today marks an exciting milestone. As well as our Expert Valuations, we’re now calculating values from a variety of sources with the aim of providing the most accurate pricing information for every collectible in the database. First up: Hot Wheels Treasure Hunts!

We’re now displaying calculated values for all of the Treasure Hunts U.S. cards and are working on finishing the values for international long and short cards and sets. As well as being able to check out what your Hunts are worth, we think you’ll be fascinated to see the range of values, from $2 to more than $500 and which ones are the most desirable! Hint; it’s not always the ones you’d think!

Ever wanted to know how much the TV Series Batmobile is worth? Now you can easily find out –

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How about that sweet Dairy Delivery Treasure Hunt – a cool $16.76

Dairy_Delivery_Model_Trucks_f2d290fe-3016-45c8-9fd4-564e1072beb4

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And what about the super cool Cruise Bruiser Treasure Hunt – valued at $22.41

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What’s the value of your favorite Treasure Hunt? For a full explanation of the price guide methodology click here. Interested in getting involved? Contact us to figure out how you can help build out the most accurate collectible price guide in the world!

 

Voting for the 2017 Diecast Hall of Fame Class is Now Live!

We’re excited to share this news on behalf of the coalition of collectors that’s organizing The 2017 Diecast Hall of Fame Ceremony – 

diecast hall of fame votingLadies and gentlemen, start your engines! We’ve made it to the final round of the 2017 Diecast Hall of Fame selection process! Let the voting  begin!

Over the last few weeks, our Selection Committee has been hard at work narrowing down the final five nominees for each induction category. We had an extremely competitive 2017 class, with more than 200 fantastic nominations from around the world. And with that, we are super excited to announce the top five selections per category!

With your help, one winner from each category will be inducted into the Diecast Hall of Fame in November. The final winners will be selected based on a combination of committee and public votes. The winners will be announced at the official event in November

Please note:  For each category, you can only vote once. Once you submit your votes and email address, you’ll receive an email link you have to click on to confirm your vote. If you would like to vote for all three categories, you will have to submit your information three times.

 

Collectors – click here to vote

Automotive Legends 

  • Tim Allen
  • Ray Evernham
  • Ralph Gilles
  • Rick Hendrick
  • Danica Patrick

Diecast Customizers 

  • Joe “LoRide57” Alvarado
  • Bannarit
  • Steve Hamm
  • Brian Moffitt
  • Karli “Kraut Custom” Sanger

Diecast Designers 

  • Sei Cho
  • Kevin Geraldez
  • Tony Karamitsos
  • Brad Trimmer
  • Brendon Vetuskey

Diecast Entrepreneurs

  • Lyndon Davis
  • Paul Lang
  • Jennifer & Mark Millhollin
  • Steve Reddell
  • Jimmy Ye

Diecast Historians

  • Bill Bennett
  • Jack Clark
  • Robert Fellows
  • Theodore (Ted) Gray
  • Paolo Rampini

Collector of the Year Award 

  • Paul David
  • James Elliott
  • Gabriel Gomez
  • Woody Itson
  • Timothy Jack

The Selection Committee has further decided to give collector Tiny Wozniak an honorary R.O.A.K. award for his contributions to the diecast community.

 

Brands – click here to Vote

Diecast Dealer of the Year

  • Brian & Ann’s Collectibles
  • CK-Modelcars
  • Diecast Models Wholesale
  • Global Diecast Direct
  • Tacot

Supplier Brand of the Year 

  • Edelbrock
  • Falken Tires
  • GReddy
  • Gulf
  • NAPA

New Model Maker of the Year

  • AutoCult
  • Johnny Lightning
  • Laudoracing Models
  • Matrix Scale Models
  • Milena Rose

Automotive Brand of the Year

  • Bentley Motors
  • BMW
  • Dodge
  • Fast and the Furious Franchise
  • Ferrari

 

Models – click here to Vote

Small Scale (up to 1/64 Scale)

  • Greenlight Ford F-350 Ramp Truck
  • Hot Wheels Fiat 500 Modificado
  • Hot Wheels Mainline Porsche 356 Outlaw
  • Matchbox Nissan Skyline 2000 GTX
  • Schuco VW T3 Westfalia Joker

1/43 Scale

  • AutoCult Gatso 4000 Aero Coupe
  • Matrix Models Chrysler Turbine
  • Minichamps 2016 Porsche Cayman GT4 Clubsport Street Version
  • Schuco VW Beetle “Lil Bugger” Camper Van
  • TrueScale Miniatures 2017 Ford GT

1/24th Scale

  • Automodello 1937 Delage D8-120 S Pourtout Aero Coupe
  • Bburago 2016 Alfa Romeo Giulia
  • Greenlight 1967 Chevrolet Impala Super Sport from Supernatural
  • Maisto Ford F-150 Raptor Off-Road Kings
  • Welly Mini Cooper S Paceman

Large Scale (1/18th Scale and Larger)

  • Auto World 2017 Ford Mustang GT
  • Autoart Mercedes-AMG GTS
  • Autocult Brandpowder 911 DS
  • Bburago Bugatti Chiron
  • Ottomobile Saviem SB2 Assistance Course Alpine

 

The Diecast Hall of Fame To Donate All Net Proceeds to Charity

The Diecast Hall of Fame and There With Care have some incredible news, and we need your help getting the word out! 

From the Diecast Hall of Fame –

Here at the Diecast Hall of Fame, we know it’s the community which makes this hobby special. The amazing contributions of past and future inductees and the community as a whole are what continue to propel the diecast industry forward and make a positive difference in the world.

When hobbyDB and  a coalition of diecast collectors and enthusiasts started to manage the Diecast Hall of Fame, we were thrilled to be able to honor the people and model vehicles which make collecting such a special hobby. But we were also excited by the opportunity to give back and make a positive impact and – since we all fell in love with collecting when we were in single digits – we thought the best way to do that would be by finding a children’s charity to donate to!

As such, we have decided to donate all of the net proceeds from this year’s Diecast Hall of Fame event in November to There With Care.

Like hobbyDB, There With Care is Boulder based and an organization which is near and dear to our hearts. Its mission is to provide a wide range of thoughtful and fundamental services to children and families during the critical phase of a medical crisis. They serve families referred by medical agencies, by building a network of services and people who ease the burden of life’s day-to-day obligations with compassion and care.

 

There With Care

Executive Director of There With Care Paula DuPre’ Pesmen was very excited to partner with the Diecast Hall of Fame – “There With Care is honored and grateful to be the recipient of the Diecast Hall of Fame event in Las Vegas on November 2, 2017.  There With Care provides day-to-day support to children and families facing critical illness and the team behind the Diecast Hall of Fame understands the needs of the families we serve. Through their generous support and partnership in care, we will be able to ease the stresses for families when they need it most and give them more time to be with their children during a fragile time in their lives.”

The meaningful support There With Care provides is unique to each family and includes transportation services, meal and grocery services, home maintenance and more.

Diecast Hall of Fame Chairman, Christian Braun stated “it’s absolutely fantastic that we found a way to make a local impact in the lives of children. As a father myself, I understand the importance of having extra support when help is needed. We are very proud to support There With Care and hope our donation can help their team continue to make a wonderful difference in the lives of the families that they care for.”

You can find out more about There With Care by visiting their website – therewithcare.org/

Join us in supporting this awesome cause by purchasing your Diecast Hall of Fame Ticket here.

As a reminder, the event is taking place on Thursday, November 2nd in Las Vegas to celebrate the 2017 Diecast Hall of Fame Inductees. Each ticket will include one M2 Machines Factory Issued Promotional event car. You’ll also enjoy delicious hors d’oeuvres and a complimentary drink ticket (21 and over only). Limited Space Available – Buy your tickets today and give back to the community!