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The State Of Hasbro

Notes on an audio-only webcast

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#1 jwasko

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Posted 15 November 2007 - 11:11 PM

Note: Speculation does not go here, or anywhere on these forums. On the other hand, any additional, concrete information is welcome.

So, I was looking at theforce.net and I saw a link to this this "Hasbro Fall 2007 Analyst Event Audio." It's 2.5 hours long, but I don't have anything better to do tonight so I will post a full summary in this topic once I'm done.

For now, however, I'll just post some notes that actually pertain to Nerf:

-Since 2001, the Nerf brand is up 274% (Wow!)

-Recently, Hasbro signed a deal with EA to make games of Hasbro brands. They showed a picture (which I couldn't see, unfortunately) of "the EA team working on Nerf [the video game]." I don't know if we actually knew about this or not, but it's confirmed now. The COO describes the game:

Boys and girls will be able to "run through reality-based worlds that they botg live in and dream of. Imagine running with your blasters, conquering a continuous range of challenges." He then continues, saying that the Rhode Island-based developers of our real-life Nerf blasters, are "working on a blaster that will work in connection with the unique Nintendo Wii Controller. Take the Nerf blaster, detach the firing mechanism, snapthe Wii controller into place, and now you're playing the Nerf video game with real Nerf hardware."

Weird...I was thinking of integrating something into Nintendo's Zapper peripheral...

That's all for now, but I'm only about 40 minutes into the 150 minute webcast. I'll edit as soon as I hear anything else that's big news...they say they'll be demonstrating new products, so here's hoping for new news on the (real) blaster front. A confirmation on the Recon's release date would be nice...

Update: Finally got to Nerf segment at ~1hr 6 min. Be right back with info...


-At the beginning of the segment, something funny happened (the audience laughed, anyway)...I figure someone shot the guy with a Nerf blaster. :lol:

-Nerf has become the number one brand of sports toys (for boys, ages 9-11)

-He mentioned the new "Vulcan," which is their "biggest, baddest nerf blaster ever" (speculate away, because that's all the info they gave).

-They will continue to market the N-Strike line's rail system, which has an install base of 10 million blasters (wow, again). I think this means they will sell more accessories, although whether that means stuff like sights or new sets like that are similar to the Disk Shot game

-They have "developed a range for college-age and young adults." Sounds like us, doesn't it? I wonder if they might lighten up on the air restriction...

-They're launching an "Office Tag" line; this actually be the same thing that they were talking about being for college-aged kids, or maybe not. He mentioned back to school time, but that doesn't necessarily mean a Fall 2008 release. The whole time, they have been harping on looking to the long term instead of just 2008. I doubt they will lighten the air restriction on Office Tag, since "office" suggests indoor play. Wouldn't want to break anything expensive, now, would we?

-He stated that while Nerf has grown by a factor of five in the United States, it's much more limited everywhere else. So, after some research, Hasbro has decided to start a push in several countries (they mentioned Russia at the beginning of the presentation, and China in particular for Nerf), with an emphasis on the Dart Tag line.

-Nerf "delivers the action boys want in a way moms around the world approve and appreciate."

-A licensing initiative will encourage consumers to experience the brand in new ways. He's probably mainly talking about the video game; they've also been harping on making their brands more "immersive."

I finished the Nerf segment (from about 1hr 8minutes to about 1hr 10.5 minutes). This may be all that they're going to have, since they've now moved on to board games.

So, that will probably be all for tonight, unless I do decide to listen to more...and even so there may not be more concerning Nerf. Overall, though, it seems (from what Hasbro is saying, at least) that the state of Hasbro is very good, and Nerf in particular is Tony-the-Tiger grrrrrrrrrrrrrreat!

I'm off to take a break and fantasize about the Vulcan...

PS: Unfortunately, there was not one mention of the Recon...although that may be because this conference is primarily about 2008 and beyond rather than the last 90 days (or so) of 2007...which would put the Recon on the back burner if it is indeed coming out in December 2007

New information 2/11/08:

According to IGN and Gamespot, the Nerf video game for the Wii will be called "N-Strike."

IGN has the game listed as coming out for both the Wii (as previously known) and the DS. The Wii version, at least, will include a new blaster that can be used as a shell for the Wii remote; however, you can also "take the action outside as [the] controller transforms to fire actual NERF darts" (according to Gamespot and previous reports from the Hasbro press conference).

The game, according to Gamespot, will include both single player and multiplayer modes

It releases sometime this fall.

Edited by jwasko, 09 January 2010 - 12:35 AM.

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#2 n-strike

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Posted 15 November 2007 - 11:15 PM

A confirmation on the Recon's release date would be nice...

It definitely would be. And I hope it's released before Christmas. Oh, how lovely that would be as a Christmas present.
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#3 One Man Clan

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Posted 15 November 2007 - 11:52 PM

wasko, good find. I had been meaning to listen to that, but I just haven't had the time.
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#4 Quilan Fett

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Posted 15 November 2007 - 11:53 PM

A confirmation on the Recon's release date would be nice...

It definitely would be. And I hope it's released before Christmas. Oh, how lovely that would be as a Christmas present.

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hasbro in a nerf war!!!!! dude the will cancel it and confinscate are guns

#5 One Man Clan

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Posted 16 November 2007 - 12:11 AM

Yes, WE HAVE ALL SEEN THAT. I am reaching out to my contacts at Hasbro to confirm, but I haven't heard back. Best we can do is go by that date for now.
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#6 jwasko

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Posted 16 November 2007 - 12:47 AM

I updated the first post with every Nerf blaster-related thing mentioned (up to about 1 hour 11 minutes into the conference). I also added a few of my interpretations of what they are saying.

That 2.5 minutes made me feel like I was in Hasbro's target age group again...
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#7 Prometheus

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Posted 16 November 2007 - 05:06 AM

I updated the first post with every Nerf blaster-related thing mentioned (up to about 1 hour 11 minutes into the conference). I also added a few of my interpretations of what they are saying.

That 2.5 minutes made me feel like I was in Hasbro's target age group again...


I wish I had time like that to spare... You're hardcore man. Was it just a normal type conference or a full-out press release conference?
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#8 Ubermensch

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Posted 16 November 2007 - 07:00 AM

The one thing about them releasing blasters with less air restrictors and stuff is that it will take away the cool factor of modding. My favorite thing about modding is that I am taking something harmless and making it a foam shooter of death. Instead, I'd be taking something already semi-modded/painful and turning it into something modded.

But anyway, I can't wait to see the Vulcan.

*Muhuhahahahahaha*
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#9 lionhead333

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Posted 16 November 2007 - 07:08 AM

Well, you know... If there will be a line for college students and adults, perhaps the blasters will be shaped like their name, eh?
The vulcan will probably be a battery powered minigun with a tendancy for a possible drum hopper to jam.
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#10 BustaNinja

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Posted 16 November 2007 - 07:24 AM

Well, you know... If there will be a line for college students and adults, perhaps the blasters will be shaped like their name, eh?
The vulcan will probably be a battery powered minigun with a tendancy for a possible drum hopper to jam.


But being Hasbro, it wont be more that 40 bucks and a hopper that jams is only a small inconvinience comepared to a battery powerdminigun. Of course this is speculation. For all we know it could be a over the shoulder turreted titan.
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#11 CaptainSlug

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Posted 16 November 2007 - 09:02 AM

And keep in mind that the things mentioned may be on a one or two year marketing plan for products that haven't reached full production yet. Don't expect to see them any time soon, they may be for December of next year, or first quarter of 2009.
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#12 jwasko

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Posted 16 November 2007 - 10:57 AM

Prometheus: I believe it was actually a conference to let their investors know what is going on in hopes that their investors will remain invested or invest more. However, since it is an "Analyst Event" I suspect that there would be at least a few analysts/journalists there, so you may want to keep your eyes on the internets for any reports and/or videos of what they saw.

By the way: I skimmed through the rest of the audio last night, and I don't think there will be much more Nerf stuff, if any. However, they did mention a "breakout session." Presumably, that will have allowed people to get hands on time and demonstrations of new products. Perhaps there will be some leaks from that.

Captain Slug: You're right; like I mentioned about the Office Tag line's release dates, not all of this stuff is necessarily going to be coming out in 2008. One of their objectives is to move past just filling out next year's line to long-term strategies in order to keep their brands alive. Although, since Nerf has already been doing so well, I don't think they are as worried about it; thy already have developed a successful strategy for Nerf (as evinced by Nerf sales). In contrast, they are re-launching laser tag (using what they learned from their successful Nerf relaunch).

Ubermensch: True, making stuff more powerful is what we're mostly about. And, they will be continuing the kids line so it's not like we won't have a steady supply of things like the NF and LS whose ranges can be doubled (or more) through skillful modification. So, if that's what you want to do, you'll be able to keep at it.

On the hand, if Hasbro does make their new "for adults" line more powerful, there is still plenty of stuff to do. There are things like integrations, and Captain Slug's "shotgun" foregrip for the LS, not to mention all the additions to turn a single-shot blaster into a multi-shot with the addition of some type of "clip." None of these modifications really increased range, but they did provide new and interesting features. We're imaginative people; we'll think of something to do with this new line.

However, let me reiterate what I said before: If the "for adults" line turns out to be the same as the "Office Tag" line, I doubt they will greatly increase the power of the blasters. They don't want to be getting sued for broken equipment from companies any more than they want to be sued for young kids getting hurt. So in summary, don't be expecting paintball markers made to shoot darts. If anything, they might move the average stock range up to 50 feet instead of 30-40 feet. Or, they may just recolor/recase the NF to make it look more adult.

One last thing, which I feel obligated to mention: There was a notice next to the audio player and at the beginning of the webcast that basically stated that everything is subject to change. In other words, don't hold the heads of Hasbro to what they say.

Edited by jwasko, 16 November 2007 - 11:29 AM.

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#13 aguineapig

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Posted 16 November 2007 - 12:17 PM

A "vulcan" is the name of a mini gun in real life.. Belt fed nerf minigun!

Linkage

Airsoft minigun
fun-petitive!

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#14 keef

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Posted 16 November 2007 - 02:43 PM

Sounds awesome!

I'll download it if I have the time to listen...

And the life ;)
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#15 gunpowder jones

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Posted 16 November 2007 - 03:24 PM

Hmm...Office Line? That sounds interesting. There is actually already a product out there for use specifically in the cubicle, im sure some of you have seen it already. It would seem like the perfect way for those of us who Nerf and hold a full time job (im sure there must be some) to bring the two together.

Computer controlled nerf missile silo...boom.

You can probably find this cheaper at other places, this was the first link I could find.

Edited by gunpowder jones, 16 November 2007 - 03:26 PM.

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#16 aguineapig

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Posted 16 November 2007 - 03:45 PM

"Missles shoot 5-8 feet" Screw that.
fun-petitive!

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#17 the nerf god

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Posted 16 November 2007 - 04:32 PM

i wonder what the "vulcan" will be like.




"warring" what the heck does that mean?!



thanks penguin807 p.s. no offnese but your avatar looks creepy

Edited by the nerf god, 16 November 2007 - 05:18 PM.

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#18 gunpowder jones

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Posted 16 November 2007 - 04:33 PM

its not like your gonna be warring with it...


Edit: warring as in shooting others with nerf guns as a competition. thanks penguinbot.

Edited by gunpowder jones, 16 November 2007 - 05:26 PM.

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#19 penguin807

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Posted 16 November 2007 - 05:01 PM

"warring" what the heck does that mean?!


Correct me if I'm wrong, but he was refering to the usb missle launcher. Warring, having Nerf wars with, I belive that was what he was getting at.
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#20 NerfGnome

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Posted 16 November 2007 - 07:29 PM

Imagine a remote controlled Nerf missle launcher. Not like the USB one where you control the aiming, but the actual missle itself after firing. Sort of like the Nikita from Metal Gear Solid. That would be sweet.
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#21 aguineapig

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Posted 16 November 2007 - 07:34 PM

Only problem being, if you lose a missile your down like 1500 Bucks.
fun-petitive!

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#22 gunpowder jones

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Posted 17 November 2007 - 11:23 AM

The point of my post was to show a cool "office type" product already in existence, and to speculate if the "Office Line" wasko talked about would carry products with this kind of creativity.

NOT to argue about the price or capabilities of said product, or to debate whether it is worth purchasing.
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#23 Tofu

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Posted 21 November 2007 - 10:25 PM

The vulcan? Sounds like they have finally trained birds for nerf. Anyway, the biggest blaster ever sound like the titan right now, so if its bigger than the titan, screw it.
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#24 penguin807

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Posted 21 November 2007 - 11:07 PM

All I'm hoping for is that the Vulcan is a better version of the chainblazer. Either that, or Nerf signed a contract with Konami and they decided to turn this into a reailty.

Thanks for letting us know about this Jwasko.

If you'll excuse me, I'm going to play some Snake Eater.
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#25 keef

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Posted 21 November 2007 - 11:42 PM

I think its a turret ball gun.

They haven't made a new one since...

Since whenever, and they said it was big... Pulsator anybody?
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