Playmates

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Playmates Toys Limited
Playmates Toys' logo

Type Toy manufacturer
Status Active
Led by To Shu Sing
Founder(s) Sam Chan
Founded 1966
Head-
quarters
Hong Kong, China
Also known as Playmates Industrial
Website https://playmatestoys.com/

Playmates Toys is a Hong Kong-based company responsible for producing children's toys based on various media properties such as Ben 10, the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, King Kong, and Godzilla. It also produced the toy line for the 2021 film Godzilla vs. Kong, and continues to produce figures from Legendary Pictures' Monsterverse, with a new line planned for the next film in the series, Godzilla x Kong: The New Empire.[1]

Kong: The 8th Wonder of the World (2005)

Playmates Kong The 8th Wonder of the World.jpg

In 2005, Playmates released a line of toys to tie in with Peter Jackson's King Kong. It consisted of several different kinds of figures.

6" figures

The 6-inch figures in the line generally come in sets of one or two, along with several smaller human figures. The King Kong figures each have some sort of gimmick that distinguishes them from the others or allows them to interact with another specific figure. For example, the Kong that comes with the juvenile Vastatosaurus rex has the ability to pull apart the V-rex's jaws, while the Kong sold with the Piranhadon can hold the Piranhadon in a headlock.

The six-inch scale figure sets are:

Skull Island playset

The Skull Island playset is designed for use with the 6-inch scale figures. It consists of several pieces, and includes several human figures and a raft.

Large-scale figures

There are three larger-scale figures released in the line. These figures are 12 inches tall and can make sounds. Despite being larger in scale, these figures come with the same human figures included with the six-inch figures. The Bull V-Rex figure can actually swallow the human figures whole, which can then be recovered from a hatch on the underside of the figure.

  • Roaring Kong (includes three humans)
  • Supreme Kong
  • Roaring Bull V-Rex (includes three humans)

Plushes

There are two different King Kong plushes released as part of the line. The larger plush makes roaring sounds when one pushes down on its chest.

Costumes

There are two separate King Kong costume sets: Electronic Kong Arms and Kong Face and Chains. The Kong arms are oversized gloves made to resemble Kong's hands that function similar to the popular "Hulk Hands" gloves, making sounds when they strike an object. The Kong Face and Chains consist of a King Kong mask and breakaway plastic chains.

Kong vs V-Rex Battling Game

A variation of the classic "Rock 'Em Sock 'Em Robots" game, the Kong vs V-Rex battling game includes a Kong and V-Rex piece, each on a base attached to a control stick. The players use the stick to make the figures punch each other until one collapses.

Godzilla and Kong (2019-2021)

Playmates Godzilla and Kong.jpg

Playmates unveiled figures of a 12-inch Godzilla (2004) and Kong from Kong: Skull Island, along with Godzilla (2016), SpaceGodzilla, and Destoroyah in the 6.5-inch scale, at Brand Licensing Europe 2019. Beginning in December 2019, the company released a Walmart-exclusive line of figures of monsters from both the Godzilla and King Kong series in anticipation of the release of Godzilla vs. Kong. The previously-revealed figures were joined by a 6.5-inch Kong, Gigan (2004), and Godzilla (2004). Reissues of five Bandai America vinyl figures in Playmates packaging also began to appear in 2020: Godzilla (1954), King Ghidorah (2001), Mechagodzilla (1974), Godzilla (1999), and Godzilla (1968). In an interview with Toho Kingdom, Vice President of Marketing John Stelzner revealed that the company would be releasing soft vinyl 6.5-inch figures of Burning Godzilla and Jet Jaguar in spring 2021, followed by "a few new monsters" and another 12-inch Godzilla figure in the fall.[2] The line became available to other retailers, such as Target, in April.[2] In August 2021, Rodan (1956) and Gorosaurus (1968) figures were unveiled on Target's website.[3][4]

Godzilla vs. Kong (2020-2021)

Playmates Godzilla vs. Kong.jpg

Wave 1

Giant figures

After low-res images of many figures from Playmates' Godzilla vs. Kong toyline leaked online earlier in the year, listings for 11" Godzilla and King Kong figures appeared on Walmart.com on July 16, 2020.[5][6] Though they quickly went out of stock, those who managed to order them received them within days.

6" figures

After finding the Giant figures, fans rapidly discovered Walmart.com listings for 6" figures, starting with one of Kong holding an axe.[7] They began appearing in stores shortly thereafter.

Wave 2

Mega figures

Images for two new 13" figures, Mega Heat-Ray Godzilla and Mega Punching Kong were found online. The figures feature light and sound gimmicks.

Giant figure

Walmart first stocked the 11" Mechagodzilla figure in March 2021.

6" figures

Playmates released the second wave of Godzilla vs. Kong figures in early 2021.[8] The Kong and Warbat figures, which were revealed on the back of Wave 1 packaging, became available in the United Kingdom and several other countries in January. They came to Walmarts in the United States in early March, along with Mechagodzilla and the Hong Kong Battle repaints.

Battle Roar figures

Two 6" figures with sound gimmicks labeled "Battle Roar Godzilla" and "Battle Roar Kong" were first sighted in China in early 2021.[9] They were released in North America later that same year.

Wave 3

Repaints of the 6" Kong with Fighter Jet and Mechagodzilla figures were stocked in Walmarts beginning in August 2021. Mechagodzilla's Proton Scream accessory is a repaint of Godzilla's heat ray.

Miniature figures

An eBay seller from Hong Kong listed various small 2" Godzilla vs. Kong figures at the end of January 2021. Other eBayers in Hong Kong and Taiwan have since offered them as well. Playmates stated that it did not have "any plans" to make them available in the United States at the time,[10] although they were sighted at a Toys 'R' Us in Canada in July.[11] The figures finally began to be sold at Target in the United States in April of 2022, combined together in a six-pack.

Plushes

Godzilla and Kong plushes were revealed in early March 2021.

Monsterverse (2022-)

Playmates MonsterVerse.jpg

A 2021 press release from Playmates mentioned plans to release toys for the "broader MonsterVerse" in 2022.[12] The first such figure, a Battle Roar Mechagodzilla, was found in China in January 2022.[13] Other figures in this line, as revealed in leaked photos from Toy Fair 2022 in London, include a figure of Godzilla from 2014's Godzilla,[14] new figures of Godzilla and Kong from during the Tasman Sea battle from Godzilla vs. Kong,[14] a figure of Kong that includes his makeshift flail from Kong: Skull Island, and King Ghidorah, along with re-releases of Battle Mechagodzilla, Hong Kong Battle Godzilla, Supercharged Godzilla, Hong Kong Battle Kong, and Antarctic Kong. According to Playmates, these figures will no longer be sold exclusively at Walmart, but at "all mass retailers."[15]

Wave 1

The first wave of Playmates' new MonsterVerse line was announced for release beginning in spring 2022. It consists of Battle Roar Mechagodzilla, City Destruction Godzilla, Ferocious Kong, and re-releases of Kong with Battle-Axe, Supercharged Godzilla, Antarctic Kong, Battle Mechagodzilla, Battle Roar Godzilla, and Battle Roar Kong. On March 13, 2022, a two-pack set of "City Battle" Godzilla and Kong figures was found in Target.[16] A three-piece diorama of a destroyed Hong Kong was included, along with previously released accessories of a HEAV and fighter jet.

Wave 2

Photos of two "Titan Tech" Godzilla and Kong figures were first taken in China and posted on June 18, 2022.[17] The figures feature a transforming gimmick, which covers them in armor. The Titan Tech Godzilla figure resembles the leaked scrapped version of the Mega Godzilla figure from the Godzilla vs. Kong toy line, which featured red battle armor, while the Titan Tech Godzilla features blue armor. A King Ghidorah figure was soon listed on Smyths Toys' official website, with a release date of July 2022.[18] The figure sports a removable chest piece, which reveals battle damage underneath.

Wave 3

On July 19, 2023, the official Playmates YouTube channel revealed a Titan Tech Rodan figure.[19] On October 8, a 5-piece Hollow Earth diorama set including variants of Godzilla and Kong figures from Godzilla vs. Kong was revealed. The Kong figure's color scheme represents the character's appearance during the battle axe charging scene in the film, whereas the Godzilla figure's coloration matches the Hollow Earth's environment.

3" figures

Five Below began selling exclusive 3" figures of Godzilla, Kong, and Mechagodzilla beginning in 2022. The figures retail for $5 apiece.

Toho Series (2022-2023)

Playmates Toho Series.png

A new line of figures based on films and media produced specifically by Toho was revealed through leaked photographs of a display at Toy Fair 2022 in London. Figures in this line include completely new sculpts of Godzilla 2016 and Godzilla Terrestris, along with re-releases of both the 12" and 6" Godzilla 2004, Gigan 2004, Kong, SpaceGodzilla, Destoroyah, Burning Godzilla, Gorosaurus, and Rodan 1956.

Wave 1

The first wave of Playmates' Toho Series was announced for release in spring 2022. It includes Godzilla 2016, Godzilla Terrestris, Godzilla Ultima, and re-releases of both the 6" and 12" Godzilla 2004, Rodan 1956, and Gorosaurus.

Wave 2

Images of an 11" Godzilla 1954 figure leaked online in July 2022,[20] and the figure was released that September. Photos of a Baragon figure from Frankenstein vs. Baragon were uploaded online on January 5, 2023.[21] Playmates announced that this figure would become available in Target and through online retailers later that month.[22] Playmates announced an end to new Toho Series figures on June 20.[23]

Godzilla x Kong: The New Empire (2023-)

GodzillaxKong-Playmates00.jpg

Playmates announced its Godzilla x Kong: The New Empire toyline on June 20, 2023, but did not officially reveal the first wave of figures prior to their appearance in Walmart stores in late December. This wave notably gave fans their first clear look at Shimo's design, as the Titan had yet to appear in any posters or trailers for the film.

Wave 1

Giant figures

6" figures

Each figure comes with at least one accessory, while Suko is a two-pack.

Versus 2-Pack

Playmates produced two Godzilla x Kong diorama sets, continuing a subline established in their Monsterverse line. The Godzilla vs. Shimo set includes breath weapon effects pieces for both Titans, a two-piece blue Hollow Earth Crystal Diorama, and a two-piece Bone Cage Diorama, while the Kong vs. Skar King set comes with a removable Whipslash, a HEAV, a two-piece purple Hollow Earth Crystal Diorama, and a two-piece Lava Falls Diorama. The figures in these packs are all repaints of figures from the 6" inch lines.

Battle Roar figures

Introduced in Playmates' Godzilla vs. Kong line, Battle Roar figures have sound gimmicks activated by pressing a button on the back of the figure.

Titan Roar Masks

When the mouth of a Titan Roar Mask is opened, it makes sounds, similar to the Godzilla mask produced by Jakks Pacific as part of its Godzilla: King of the Monsters toyline.

Hollow Earth Crystals with Surprise Monsters

This blind-box set includes:

While there is no connection between the color of a crystal and the Titan inside, the shape of the "bubble" containing each Titan varies in shape and can be glimpsed through the transparent crystals, allowing them to be identified before purchase.[24]

Minifigures

The Godzilla Evolved, Kong with B.E.A.S.T. Glove, Skar King, and Shimo figures are identical to those in the Hollow Earth Crystals with Surprise Monsters subline.

Titan Evolution

On December 24, Playmates released a instructional video for a Titan Evolution Godzilla.

3" minifigures

Bucket of Mini Monsters

A Bucket of Mini Monsters was revealed at London Toy Fair in January 2024. Its contents are unknown.

24" figures

24" figures of Godzilla Evolved and Kong with the B.E.A.S.T. Glove and the Battle-Axe were revealed at London Toy Fair in January 2024.

Godzilla Evolved FX figure

Another large Godzilla Evolved figure was revealed at London Toy Fair, appearing to feature light and water mist effects similar to that of Jada Toys' Heat Ray Breath Godzilla R/C figure.

Videos

Commercials

Godzilla vs. Kong figures commercial
Godzilla vs. Kong figures commercial #2
Brazilian Godzilla vs. Kong figures commercial
Godzilla vs. Kong Mega figures commercial
Godzilla vs. Kong Battle Roar figures commercial
Titan Tech figures commercial
Titan Tech figures short commercial
Godzilla x Kong: The New Empire 6" and Giant figures commercial
Godzilla x Kong: The New Empire 6" and Giant figures 15 seconds commercial
Godzilla x Kong: The New Empire Battle Roar figures and Titan Evolution Godzilla commercial

Instructional videos

Titan Tech Godzilla Instructional Video
Titan Tech Kong Instructional Video
Titan Tech Rodan Instructional Video
Battle Roar Godzilla Evolved Instructional Video
Battle Roar Kong Instructional Video
Battle Roar Skar King Instructional Video
Titan Evolution Godzilla Instructional Video

Retail videos

Burning Godzilla retail video
Jet Jaguar retail video

Other

Godzilla vs. Doug

External links

References

This is a list of references for Playmates. These citations are used to identify the reliable sources on which this article is based. These references appear inside articles in the form of superscript numbers, which look like this: [1]

  1. Toho Kingdom (20 June 2023). "Some toy news: "Playmates Toys is proud to announce the continuation of its Legendary Monsterverse line of movie-based kaiju toys, and are currently in development on an entirely new figure and toy line for the upcoming Godzilla x Kong movie premiering March 15th, 2024". Twitter.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Mirjahangir, Chris (13 November 2020). "Interview: John Stelzner [Playmates Toys]". Toho Kingdom.
  3. Target.com - Godzilla 6.5" Classic Rodan Figure
  4. Target.com - Godzilla 6.5" Classic Gorosaurus Figure
  5. "Godzilla vs Kong 11" Giant Godzilla (XL) Figure". Walmart.com. Retrieved 16 July 2020.
  6. "Godzilla vs. Kong 11" Giant King Kong (XL) Figure". Walmart.com. Retrieved 17 July 2020.
  7. "Godzilla vs. Kong 6" Basic Kong with Battle-Axe Figure". Walmart.com. Retrieved 18 July 2020.
  8. Kaijuologist (24 November 2020). "A few weeks ago, I emailed PlayMates Toys asking about when to expect the next wave of #GodzillavsKong toys. We can confirm that the next wave of toys will come Spring 2021. #Godzilla #GodzillaKingoftheMonsters #KongSkullIsland #Monsterverse". Twitter.
  9. @Ned_Chang (5 February 2021). "Exclusive first look! Battle Roar Godzilla & Battle Roar Kong from Playmates Toy! #GodzillavKong #playmates @High_Flyers77 @KaijuNewsOutlet @OMEGAGORMARU". Twitter.
  10. Playmates Crushes My Hopes and Dreams (2021, colorized).png
  11. stephanie emma (19 July 2021). "Godzilla vs Kong Playmates mini figures has arrived at Toys R Us Canada Toy Hunting #shorts". YouTube.
  12. Playmates Toys Announced 2021 Interim Results
  13. @Ned_Chang (9 January 2022). "Check this out everyone!!! Battle Roar MechaGodzilla!!!!". Twitter.
  14. 14.0 14.1 [1]
  15. Mirjahangir, Chris (21 February 2022). "Godzilla Playmates Toys – News Roundup". Toho Kingdom.
  16. David Erwin (13 March 2022). "Target find! New Monsterverse Playmates Godzilla vs Kong Toys! City Battle Set! New!". YouTube.
  17. nedchang86 (18 June 2022). "Titan Tech Godzilla & Titan Tech Kong from Playmates Toys #Godzillavskong #Godzilla #Kong #monarch #godzillakingofthemonsters #skullisland #monsterverse #monster #figure #gvk #mechaGodzilla #kingghidorah #kingghidorah2019 #rodan #mothra #shmonsterarts #bandai #necatoys #legendary #playmatestoys". Instagram.
  18. "Monsterverse Godzilla King of the Monsters 15cm - King Ghidorah". Smyths Toys.
  19. Playmates Toys (19 July 2023). "Titan Tech Rodan Instructional Video". YouTube.
  20. "Playmates: Godzilla/Kong - Page 76". Toho Kingdom Forums. 23 July 2022.
  21. Chang, Ned (5 January 2023). "Baragon from Playmatestoys Toho Classic Series #Godzillavskong #Godzilla #Kong #monarch #godzillakingofthemonsters #skullisland #monsterverse #monster #figure #gvk #mechaGodzilla #kingghidorah #kingghidorah2019 #rodan #mothra #shmonsterarts #bandai #necatoys #legendary #Xplus #jakkspacific #ichibankuji #burninggodzilla #kaiju #baragon #playmatestoys". Instagram.
  22. @KaijuNewsOutlet (6 January 2023). "The first official images of the new Toho Series Baragon (1965) figure have been provided to KNO by Playmates Toys. The figure will be released at Target and online retailers later this month". Twitter.
  23. Toho Kingdom (20 June 2023). "Playmates has produced over a dozen styles of Classic Toho monsters over the past four years. However, we will no longer be developing new styles of the Classic Toho line in the future. Our Baragon figure is the last new figure that we will be releasing. As fans of Godzilla and". Twitter.
  24. Thirsty Thursday Toys (5 January 2024). "How to tell the Hollow Earth Crystals apart! Godzilla X Kong - New Empire Toys". YouTube.

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Legendary
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