Thursday, March 15, 2012

NEWS: Rise of the Beasts Cancelled

Kickstarter toy project Rise of the Beasts has been cancelled.

Rise of the Beasts was a proposal to produce a line of Battle Beast-style mini-action figures, intended to evoke the aesthetic of such toys as Masters of the Universe and MUSCLE. As you can imagine, for fans of 80s toy lines, the Rise of the Beasts project seemed like a dream come true and the project goal of $11,000 was exceeded well ahead of yesterday's target date.

However, mere hours before the deadline, Rise of the Beasts coordinator Jon Karis cancelled the project without comment. Following a very vocal outcry from the project's would-be backers, the following update was posted:

From Plastic Imagination:

A fantastic opportunity has presented itself that Plastic !magination simply could not refuse regarding the Rise of The Beasts line. This opportunity allows them to bring the line to market without asking the fans to make a pledge in advance and allows them far greater flexibility regarding the frequency of new characters being released. They are ecstatic about this opportunity and believe the fans will be as well.

From me:

The first figures will be here in June (the first of which will be the Golden Lion) and the rest soon after.

For those of you who have pledged at the $1100 or $1500 levels, you will still have the same opportunity down the road, after the initial product order is in and you have a chance to see the product in person.

Thank you all for your support for this Kickstarter! We will be updating you here and via the thread at, thanks!

The comment was met with anger by supporters, many of whom had used their blogs, Twitter accounts and Facebook Pages to promote the project and who now felt they'd been ''used'' to help secure private funding for the project.

A few hours later, Jon further clarified the situation:

Hi guys,

Here is what happened.

I found out this morning that the factory came back late last night and said they can only do the figures at the 80mm scale which is 1/3 larger than the 60mm they promised. According to them, 60mm is just too small for them to handle. There was simply not enough time to notify everyone and give them the option of cancelling their pledge. Had this news come a week ago, an update would have gone out letting people know and the Kickstarter would have lived or died based on the 80mm size change. So really, the only option was to cancel.That being said. The gold lion has already been paid for and is being made at 80mm instead. It will be available for free to everyone who pledged at the $45 or higher level (as promised).

The upside of this whole situation is that there are a couple other avenues that will allow the figures to be made at 60mm and sooner. Just not at this manufacturer.

I just found out about this deal breaker early this morning, P! [Plastic Imagination, the company designing the figures] found out late last night. So rather than take your money and hope for the best, we cancelled. There really was no other option.I hope this provides some clarification for those of you who are rightfully upset and confused. For those of you who are still pissed after reading this, all I can say is I am sorry that we hit this bump, but cancelling the Kickstarter was absolutely the right thing to do, based on the last minute info from the factory.

I will gladly take egg on my face over this hiccup, when the alternative was letting the project fund and taking a gamble with your money.

I'm sorry guys, but there really was no other way.

It's still not clear why the initial announcement made no mention of the factory issues or why - as many have suggested - Jon and Plastic Imagination didn't forge ahead with Series 1 as a Kickstarter-funded project and switch to the new funding model for a second series of toys.

You can read more at the Kickstarter: Rise of the Beasts Page.

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