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Rules of Collecting

MoroMoro5 years agoMisc
CROSSPOSTED: moronokimi.live...

Since I am unfortunately not fabulously wealthy, nor do I have an unlimited amount of space, I follow a set of rules that restricts what and how much I can buy. In my opinion every collector should follow some sort of rules, unless they have such an enormous house and vast income that it doesn't matter how many expensive items they buy on a whim.
I think there are a lot of ways to go about making rules and they yield quite different results.

Sometimes I break some of my rules if I'm only buying a figure for resale or customization.

One of the biggest things is that I never preorder something, no matter how distantly in the future it's due for release, if I don't have the money for it at the time of preorder! I've seen friends have problems with it so I just don't do it.
If the figure is of a character from an anime series, then I can't order it unless I have gotten at least 50% of the way through, with priority to series I've finished.
If it's from an OVA or movie then I can't order from it unless I've finished it. Movies are obvious and most OVAs are so short that there's really no excuse.
If it's from a game, then I can't order unless I've beaten the game, or in the case of fighting games and the like, unless I've played at least 10 hours. If something has a game and an anime (like the Fate/ series) then either or both will count.
Beyond these restrictions priority is based on how much I like the series and how popular the item is (that is, if I think that by passing it up now I will be unable to get it later.)
In general, figures from Neon Genesis Evangelion (and Rebuild of Evangelion + all the spinoffs) take priority. It's both a blessing and a curse that there are so many figures for Eva coming out all the time, since with the Rebuild movies everyone's interest has been rekindled.

I am rarely interested in "original character" figures as a large part of the reason for my enjoyment of figure collecting is based on the character themselves, so I don't have any special rules surrounding them. They do tend to fall lower on the priority list than other potential purchases, though.
I don't have hard and fast rules for Vocaloid figures either, although they would be disallowed if I didn't like any Vocaloid music. But since they're so popular if there's one I want I tend to make sure and get it early.
I have a slight preference for figmas and revoltech over static PVC, but it really depends on the figures in question.
Generally I don't bother ordering boxes of trading figures or gashapon because those are some of the easiest to find affordably after release, often in sets of one of each rather than a randomly packed box; it seems like I should jump on or host box splits for the Evangelion portraits if I want them in the future, though.

The advantage to this method is that I don't end up spending money on figures that I like only for their appearance, something which has tempted me on multiple occasions. However, this set of rules doesn't have anything in place for a maximum amount of spending. So if a whole lot of figures that fit in my rules come up for preorder at once, there's nothing inherently in place to stop me ordering them all...

What kinds of rules, if any, do you have for collecting? Is there a system to it? Tell me about it in your comments!
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Comments33 comments

I group my preorders with a month break in between to give myself time to rack my finances back up. I only buy less than 200 dollars at a time, choosing extremely carefully. I don't buy anything super-peverted and look foremost for resale value and beauty. Resale value is determined by series popularity, company (alter and good smile), and character accuracy and pose. Figmas are bad for resale, so only really good ones are bought for myself. I have a test 'if my unaware boyfriend/social aqaintance/uncle walks into my room, what kind of figure would immedietly convince them that this is an ok hobby?' Seriously, immediately attractive figures from even an outsider's view are worth it. And you know, resale for when I inevitably lose interest in these awesome figures.
5 years ago
MoroOne of the biggest things is that I never preorder something, no matter how distantly in the future it's due for release, if I don't have the money for it at the time of preorder!

Agreed!! "I don't have the money" has got to be the poorest excuse for canceling. If you don't have the money then don't buy.

Also, if collecting figures has an impact on your living expenses or diet etc, you really shouldn't be collecting.
5 years ago
1. Has to be a female Nendoroid
2. Only pre-order
3. I can only pre-order one every 3 weeks due to budget
5 years ago
Hm, I'll have to sit back and think for a bit what my personal rules are.
5 years ago
Jenthehen Otaku at Law
My only "rules" right now aren't hard and fast. Mostly I am just sure to be reasonable with money / space concerns. My only real "rule" is no more prize figures. I only have 6 right now (and I'm thinking of selling most if not all of them anyway). I just decided to go with quality over quantity. Some prize figures are decent quality, but I really like the REALLY GOOD SCALE FIGURES (Alter, Max Factory, Goodsmile, Kotobukiya, etc.) I'm limited to those from now on, and the odd Nendoroid (I have 6 now that I love, but I'm not THAT into them, so I only get them if I really like something about one - i.e. I'd like the Denpa Onna one next).

Oh, and I stopped the "must love the anime / character" rule ... it just doesn't always work out. Like, I HATE Fate/Stay Night and Saber, but there are some AWESOME Saber figures (i.e. the Maids I have on preorder!) If I really really like something about the look of a figure, even if I'm not that into the character / show, I might still consider getting the figure.
5 years ago
My rules :
1.Go for figures under $50 if the character is not one of my primary favorites. Only get something more expensive if there are no cheaper figures available or I don't like them.
2.Never pay more than ~$100-120 for any single figure (including shipping and additional costs if any)
3.No more than one expensive (over $50) figure for each character unless it's one of my top favorites and the new figure is different enough to make it worth buying.
4.If I have doubts, and it's not expensive, rather buy it than regret later.
5.If I have doubts, but it's expensive, don't buy. It'll probably be available much cheaper used if I still want it later.
6. No preorders from now on. I noticed how much different the prototype pictures and the actual product are sometimes. I have been lucky so far, but I don't want to take the risk. I have the most important characters already, anyway.
7. As my collection grows and available space (and money) shrinks, buying less important figures should be avoided whenever possible.
8.If I really want it, none of the rules apply.

Additional rules :
A. No bootlegs if it's a figure. Bootlegs are ok for plush, especially if there is no original.
B. No Furyu, ever again. Not even if it really looks nice or it's the only one for the character.
5 years ago
Rule #1. Keep a budget to the side to pay for it. If you can't do that, don't order it.

Rule #2. Go for the one that will most likely jump in price.

Rule #3. Go for the sale.

Rule #4. Do whatever makes you happy in life.

I have never followed these rules and I am a miserable slimebag that resides underneath my computer desk crying every single day. God bless anime.
5 years ago
I used to live by the "if you haven't seen the anime/played the game/whatever" you can't have it but I slipped a bit on a few vocaloids and Saber figures and it snowballed and I was just buying all the things I thought *looked* good.
However, I have gone back to that rule recently. Having said that, I have a tendency to circumvent my own rules by intentionally watching things so I can justify the figure. Example: Black Rock Shooter, Persona 4.

I'm my own worst enemy really. ;^__^

Also, for money, I try not to spend more than £150 a month. Mostly I preorder so this is fairly easy to keep an eye on (I have a spreadsheet and everything!).

Also, this should be obvious, but I won't buy it if it looks bad. Even if it's my favourite character, if the quality is poor, I don't buy it.

So basically it's:
1) Do I know them?
2) Do I like the way they look?
3) Can I afford it?

If I can't say yes to all 3 of those, then it's a no. Rule one is still a bit bendable in exceptional circumstances. ^__^
5 years ago
The rules I use are simple:

1. The figure should be worth all the money.
2. Unless it's a highly desirable figure/chara with something unique don't go over the mfc listed price by more than Y3000. [Imports follow different rules]
3. The shop either needs a big discount on the item or more than one item I badly want( Since shipping is ALWAYS expensive).
4.If possible try to get it in new condition and never pay more than 80% of the listed price for figures which were displayed/used for a long time. [In my eyes the value goes DOWN after time when opened and UP after time when sealed]
5.Try to get the cheapest
6.Make sure that the money is spread out over the entire year, recalculate available finances after each purchase.
7.Make sure I've enough space to display it
8-9. Try to get it as close from the source(cheapest by standard); Only use shops with good costumer service,no bootlegs and when local within 2-3 countries from home.(Mainly France, Germany, Belgium, UK, Spain, Denmark etc.)
10. Top-tier companies(GSC, Kotobukiya, Alter) get priority over the rest.
11. Prize figures < scale figures , unless their really desirable.

I've been saving a lot of money throughout the years and my stubbornness helps me to maintain it.

Most important rule:
12. I must not doubt or regret my choices.
5 years ago
I have barely any rules for collecting figures, which would be bad for me since I give into temptation easily... The balancing factor is that figure collecting is a minor hobby, so I can go a year or two before buying another figure!

Rule #1: Know the characters and the series before buying. If I don't know it, either skip or look it up (which I did with my Super Sonico figure).

Rule #2: Take a day or more debating on whether the figure is worth the money. How expensive is it? How much do I like the characters or series? How much do I really want it?

Rule #3: Don't go above $200 unless there is something special about the figure or is a character is out of stock and I really want them.

Rule #4: Don't buy the same character again unless there's something unique/cute/interesting that is worth paying for. (I'm looking at you, Super Soncio!)

Since I don't buy figures as a main hobby, I usually accidentally come across my figures which makes it harder to follow my rules. I watch a lot of anime/play a lot of games, so it's important to not spend on characters that I only kinda like and will forget later. I only did that once and that was my first figure. #3 is just so my budget doesn't completely disappear before the year even starts. That would be baaaaaaaad.
5 years ago
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