This idea came about as a result of all the debate that arises once a new dolls is announced. It really doesn’t matter if a doll is DD, SD or whatever- there’s always a flutter of excitement and all fans begin to wildly speculate on the availability of new products. It causes so much angst and anxiety that I decided there has to be a better way….
I am introducing:
The Volks Attainability Scale!
This scale will help fans gauge how much effort they should be willing to put into purchasing that doll. Of course this scale is not perfect and may not always be correct depending on Volks’ future decisions. Each scale you see on the site is only valid for the date it was created and, it goes without saying, attainability will fluctuate with additional released, market changes, etc. I feel like this scale is still a pretty good place to start!
So how does it work?
It’s pretty simple. The attainability scale is a 12 point scale. This is divided into 4 categories, each being worth 3 pts:
- Type of Release Event
- Intellectual Property Popularity
- Quantity of Past Volks releases with Company
- Past Attainability Assessment (If no doll has been released previously with the IP partner, this score will be 0)
For example I had a reader ask me about MDD Arle. (This is for you celiathepikachu ❤ ) She’s SUPER CUTE and is a character from a the Puyo Pop Video Game license owned by Sega.
Type of Release Event: MDD Arle was a Dolpa Doll which meant she was available at Dolpa and through the afterevent. This lands her a score of 2 in the first category. She is a 2 because you’d have a couple chances to welcome her but not a 3 because there’s always a chance you would not win her in a lottery.
Intellectual Property Popularity: This generally dictates the amount of dolls Volks contracts to make for the event. I do believe Volks tries to make enough to sell in large numbers if the character is popular enough. I think Arle is a 1 here. She’s a well known video game character in Japan but not exactly Sailor Moon, Sword Art Online, or Miku Hatsune famous.
Quantity of Past Volks releases with Company: Arle automatically hits a 3 here. Sega has been a partner multiple times with Volks for produce dolls from different IPs. There are many from Tony Taka’s art from the “Shining” series and “Sakura Taisen”. We’ve already seen Melty rereleased due to her popularity and it is not impossible that Sega would be open to allowing another run of Arle in the future if Volks asked for it.
Past Attainability Assessment: So this is the hardest score if a doll is a new IP or hasn’t been released before. Since Arle has already been released it’s a little easier. It seemed as though Arle was not difficult to get, however, she became more desirable after release. Once she was home with her owners and more photos came out the demand for her on the secondary market increased. She is a 1 in this category.
Then we add it all up…. she’s a 7/12 on the attainability scale! Arle isn’t as hard to get as Sasara or Mikki but she’s still pretty rare on the secondary market. Her score is a bit more boosted than you’d expect because there’s also a good chance that if there is enough demand for her, that Sega would approve another release.
What exactly does a 7 on this scale mean? Well, I’d encourage you to think about the meter as both a measure of effort and cost. We have SD Mai on the one end who is an Volks SD Standard who you can order at original retail price -anytime off of their website- and have her delivered to your door. On the opposite end of the spectrum we have the D23 Belle as Cinderella who is, not only considered a rare, elaborate one-off she is also auctioned off in a high competition fashion on YJ! for thousands of dollars. You’d need to be ready to put in a lot of time, money and effort to purchase a D23 doll. This leaves Arle about in the middle with DD Takane- one of the rarer Idol Master releases. Arle is currently available on the secondary market but you’d have to be willing to pay double or triple retail and use a proxy to purchase her.
I hope this is helpful and that it gives some insight into how the scale works. Please feel free to let me know what you think and if the scale works for you. I am always happy to answer any an all questions. ❤ I’ll be including this scale and potentially refining it in the future!
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