Hasbro bringing back Micronauts

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Big news out of Hasbro’s 2009 Fall Investor Day Event (now that sounds like a party). According to TNI, Hasbro is bringing back the Micronauts.

During Hasbro’s 2009 Fall Investor Day Event held today at their headquarters in Pawtucket, Rhode Island, they announced the re-introduction of the classic toy line Micronauts originally created by Japan company Takara in 1974 under the name Microman and later launched in the United States in 1976 and backed by a Marvel Comics comic book series in 1979. As many know, Takara is the same company that originally invented the Transformers line and continues to work with Hasbro today. No specifics were given by Hasbro’s Brian Chapman (VP if Hasbro’s Global Designs) about what we can expect from the Micronauts brand other than that we can expect Hasbro to revise, reinvent and re-ignite the brand so it is exciting for fans old and new alike. There also was some indication that a television series and/or major motion picture could be in the works for this brand.

So what do y’all think? Good news?

I’m happy for Micronauts fans, but I have a hunch whatever Hasbro does, it won’t be as awesome as SOTA’s aborted line.

UPDATE: Wait! It gets crazier: J.J. Abrams in Talks to Produce Micronauts movie

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  • I love Micronauts.

    I hope they turn out to be good 'uns, I agree with Poe that Pallisade's stab at things was nice but I'd love a more comic accurate Acroyear and Bug.

    The last few Micromen were of pretty varied quality, plagued with some nasty QC issues, pity as they were some nice pieces there.

    I shall take this chance to shamelessly plug my Microman Flickr group too…
    http://www.flickr.com/groups/325719@N20/

  • I don't even know where this will go. Will there be an initial "classic" offering a la Masters of the Universe or Palisades Micronauts, with the new figures filling behind the launch, or will everything come together from the ground up? Will we see a partnership with Marvel's intellectual property, or will it be another launch, like Devil's Due, with pale imitation of Bug, Commander Rann and Marionnette? Time will tell.

  • I should be more excited for this: I've bought more than a couple Micronauts both times around, but I would dearly love to see Bug and Marionette figures. And I know, I know I'm not going to. Unless Hasbro has some kind of magic red-tape-cutting deal with Disney…

  • I'd love to see Hasbro team with Takara to bring us something built on the latest Microman stuff. Or, heck, even the older Magnepowers stuff; those were fun toys.

    At least it's not Michael Bay doing the movie.

  • I am pretty happy they are getting another chance.

    SOTA…tried to do an amazing line but it never cmae about. I contacted SOTA a several months back before (I think) they went bankrupt (?) They said back then to me there was not enough intrest in the line from fans for them to boother releasing it, especially since it did not have a comic or any other media backing it up. Well in my opinion when you only make three prototypes and keep showing them for 3 years I doubt their would be much interest from the fans, awesome looking as they were.

    The Pallisade tried but they were really poor quality.

    I think Hasbo could do a real good job of this if they do some original re-imaginings of the characters ans incorporate some of the more recent Microman products…and some originals, because they were cool.

    I would assume they will be in 3.75" scale as it seems to be the trend at the minute. SOTA's planned line was to be 6" scale. I would like the small figures with a few larger 6" figures in the line.

    The thing to remeber is the 'Interchangeable' gimmick is great and could work really well in toadys market, especially when you consider Ben 10 figures (the small ones anyway) have the interchangeable parts gimmick.

    Anyway very happy they are bringing them back…if only next they would bring back the Thundercats….anyone want to petition them with me LOL.

  • What I have so far:

    There is a rumor in the Micro community that Mattel had been sniffing at the license with enough force that Hasbro felt in 'HAD' to take on the license so that Mattel would not get its on hooks into Takara and the roots of the Transformers line. The trademarks for Microman / Micronauts in North America have been in dispute for almost 2 decades (That is why the Palisades figure did not get the support they were promised and why the SOTA figures died as prototypes). Over the last 6 months EVERYTHING suddenly got resolved. Takara ceded the entire interest to AGE (Marty Abrams), who then ceded it to MIC holdings, a company that brokers intellectual properties, who then consolidated all the trademarks and some new areas to put all the eggs in one basket. They then completed the deal between Takara and Hasbro (possibly after talking to Mattel). The fact that Takara dropped all rights to the license suggests that the MIC consolidation was in the works from the beginning and talks were already under way with a 'major NA manufacture' The Marvel characters (Bug and Marionette) and the Marvel designs not based on actual Mego figures are NOT available.

    For my own thoughts I actually want a new backstory or the original Japanese Microman backstory to be used for the new toys and film instead of the Marvel / Mego storyline that has been used / abused so many times already. The most resent Microman story suggests that the Acroyears came from Microman stock that was corrupted by pollution so there is an 'eco' angle that can be worked as well. The big requirements for the toys will be a peg and post interchangeability throughout the line, the 1:18th scale and VEHICLES (I would love to see the Micropolis building sets come back in as well but I won't push it just yet).

    The best part of this whole story is that Micronauts is FINALLY retched from the evil claws of Marty Abrams.

  • I never read this or saw or owned the toys, but am familiar with the name for some reason. Of course, this being Hasbro, and plastic being expensive, this will be a 3.75" line, which means that despite how cool it may be, I will not buy it. There's just something so "worthless" about toys that are so small, to my mind. Not that I begrudge others their enjoyment by any means. I just need my toys to be more substantial and visually apparent. It's probably a good thing though. The last thing I need is another line to get addicted to.

  • @Tekwych,

    Yes, what was the point of Marty holding on to this property for so long? Those old guys still can't let go of the memories of having an office over Manhatten and being THE big toy company.

    I will give Mego credit for really pushing the modular aspect so much though. They did understand playability even if they couldn't see past their own greed. I think that with vehicles and the 1:18th aspect it could really be something. The industry is so screwed up. They'll only follow a property as far as its media tie-ins with no inspiration given otherwise. With quality designers, the comic 2pack format, and transformer-style vehicles kids would buy the shiite out of Micronauts. Eventually the industry is not going to be able to sustain rehashing past toylines…but this line would seem just new enough to kids to be a winner. There's also the potential for Hasbro to combine their Marvel property and bring in those characters that we're never done before. If they appealed to kids once, they will again.

  • I first came a cross Micronauts in Tomarts action figure encyclopedia back in 2002, I had heard the name but never seen the toys. I was really suprised when I saw them, due to the variety of characters and vehicles and playsets….it was a really unique line.

    I was lucky enough and came across some MOC Pallisade reissues earlier this year, but the quality overall was poor as the joints were very loose and the colour schemes were not as good as the originals.

    I am really glad it is Hasbro doing it and not Mattel.

  • I hope it's comicbook style Micronauts not the spindly Takara figures,the SOTA ones look incredible.

  • @Reverend Ender: to be fair, no 3 3/4 inch line did more to showcase how awesome that scale can be… not even gi joe. microman/nauts had more playsets (and bigger ones), interchangable parts (like body parts, not just accessories), a literal crapton of accessories, some of which were the predecessors of modern BAFs, and had an almost preposterously huge cast. and in theory, back in the day, they were cheap, so it didn't cost a mortgage payment to own them. nowadays… i suspect the killer of this incarnation will be price tag… in order to really enjoy the line, you need a googleplex of them… and if they're hovering about 10 bucks a pop, no one will buy.

    but a micronauts army swarming your SW army… that could be rad bad daddy!!

  • @dayraven: You hit it right on the Head DAYRAVEN – i loved the original Micros more than just about anything else – including my beloved Star Wars – because they had the articulation I craved in a scale that fir in with the most awesome selection of vehicles and playsets ever made. The Astrostation is still my display vehicle of choice for all my coolest 3 3/4 figs alongside the Big Falcon and I have managed to keep a surprising number of my original figures intact and on display.

    These things just rocked and I hope that Hasbro does them justice with whatever they decide to do with this franchise.

    And thank the maker it wasn't Mattel that sunk their hooks into the property – there's only so much disappointment and frustration you can take in one lifetime.

  • Ender-

    Micronauts has MICRO right in the name!!!

    Besides,haven't they always been 3 3/4?

  • Actually Microman has had its roots with Hasbro rather indirectly since the line was first brought out as a spin off of the Henshin Cyborg line put out by Takara, which was in turn derived from the old Takara G.I.Joes. In another interesting bit of trivia, the figures and accessories are all 1/1 scale according to the storyline. It should be interesting to see what Hasbro does with them.

    Modern Microman figures are a far cry from the figures of old. The Mego line pretty much hit on the first few years of the original Takara line, which lasted long past the point where Mego went under. The figures currently have up to 32 points of articulation. Pretty amazing for figures so small. For more info on the line and to see pictures of the line up to the fairly current, check out the website Microman Forever http://www.microforever.com Enjoy!

    –Dancougar82