A Beginner’s Guide to Collecting Mezco’s One: 12 CollectiveJose Lopez
Everyone has to start somewhere, and collectors are no different. Whether you’re entering the hobby on the ground floor, or you’re sliding over from collecting something else, there can be a lot to catch up on so you’re not left behind. Mezco’s One: 12 Collective line started nearly five years ago, back in 2015. In that short amount of time, they have become one of the most popular 6” figure lines in the market. Capturing the interest of fans that wanted something more high-end than a Marvel Legend or scaled smaller and cheaper than a Hot Toys figure, Mezco found a niche for themselves that has been extremely profitable. Applying the higher production value and soft goods of the sixth scale market and combining it with the smaller size of the twelfth scale market has earned them many fans, and with that number of people’s interest comes a steep learning curve. Never fear, new collector, because we’re here to give you some basic advice to help you on your way.
Pre-Order, Pre-Order, Pre-Order!
Pre-ordering is, without a doubt, the most vital factor of collecting the One: 12 line. Often, the time between a new figure being solicited and actually being released can be over a year, if not longer. This means that by the time you start seeing that figure out in the wild, it’s too late to buy it. Now this doesn’t happen with every release, but it does happen, and there isn’t a foolproof way to know when it will. So why live dangerously and risk paying too much in the aftermarket or never getting the figure at all? Pre-ordering is always the smart option.
Buy from a smaller retailer that you trust
Now that you’re smart and pre-ordering like a pro, let’s discuss who to pre-order from. If you can help it, don’t order from Mezco Toyz directly. Mezco charges a pretty ridiculous shipping cost, which when combined with tax can be a steep increase on the sticker price. Using myself as an example, this can easily raise the price of a One:12 figure from $80 to $97. Mezco does offer rewards, which basically translate into money you can cash in against a purchase, but I find that build up to be painfully slow. Instead, consider finding another online retailer that offers cheaper or even free shipping. Often, a smaller retailer will offer rewards themselves and a personal touch that can’t be beat. They even sometimes get them out to you before Mezco themselves, which is crazy.
Pay in advance
Whether or not you’re pre-ordering from Mezco themselves or another retailer, here’s a bit of advice you will definitely thank me for later. If at all possible, pay in full immediately. I’ve already mentioned this, but the One: 12 Collective line is slow. They can also be a decent chunk of change, ranging from $80-100 on average. Pre-paying allows you to finally get your figure months or a year later, and it almost feels like a gift. It’s awesome. Another huge benefit of this is being on top of your funds. Mezco releases tend to be pushed further back as the year goes on until they’re finally all dropped en masse as Christmas approaches. This catches a lot of collectors by surprise, making for a lot of stress and hard choices. Don’t be that person. Pay in advance and always be prepared.
Sign up for the Mezco Newsletter
Mezco loves surprising their fans by suddenly putting up a new release for pre-order. To make matters even more challenging, those surprise new figures tend to be Mezco Exclusives, which means an immediate feeding frenzy will commence and it will be your one and only chance to grab it online. There are several ways to stay ahead of this, including following Mezco Toyz on social media (@MezcoToyz on Twitter) and joining a fan group on sites like Facebook, but chief among them should be the most obvious: sign up for their email newsletter. Alerts (with a link) that a new pre-order has just gone up or will go up are delivered concurrently with the events, while you’re also kept abreast of other goings on in Mezco land. It’s the first line of defense against missing out, and really should be a no-brainer.
You don’t have to be a completest
I’m aware there are lucky collectors out there who can not only afford to buy every single action figure that Mezco produces, but they also have the ample free time to enjoy and admire said figures. I’m not one of those people, but I sure used to fancy myself one of them. One: 12 Collective figures can add up quickly, so it’s important to be honest with yourself about your collecting budget. Collectors often get caught up “keeping up with the Joneses”, feeling the need to have the next new thing someone else has posted about online. It’s unnecessary and, more importantly, financially irresponsible.
It’s fine to only own one version of Batman or Wolverine. In fact, you’ll very likely appreciate that one version more than you ever would if you had twenty of them cluttering up your shelf.
In the end, these basic tips are barely scratching the surface of One: 12 Collective collecting. Maybe we’ll have time to dig deeper in the future, but until then I hope this primer has helped prepare you if even a little bit. Let us know in the comments section what tips you would offer to a new collector just getting on board with Mezco Toyz?