The merchandise of Star Wars Galaxy's Edge

Edited: August 15, 2019, 9:45 PM

I got to check out SWGE on Sunday and wanted to talk about the merch. I kinda felt underwhelmed.

There were a lot of things that weren't unique to Disney, let alone this new land. Very little was a surprise. In sharp contrast I went from being mildly interested in making a droid to excited and I also went from not caring about building a lightsaber to deciding my entire family should build them together (OMG that's a grand!). But yeah, most of the stuff seemed like it has been offered in Wal-marts, toy stores, and halloween shops for years.

So yeah... is there any merch you all are excited for?

Replies (9)

August 14, 2019, 11:33 AM

I think the merchandise at Galaxy's Edge is quite unique, and while you might find some similar items at local retailers, they are lacking the quality and authenticity of the items sold in Galaxy's Edge.

Unfortunately when we visited DL's Galaxy's Edge, a number of items were sold out and prospects for replenishment were slim to none with rumors that any additional stock being ordered was being rerouted to WDW to ensure DHS does not run out. However, there were a number of items being sold that I've never seen in any store.

1. Creature Stall - While you can probably find some similar "toys" that look like the items sold in the Creature Stall, you're simply not going to find the exact same items at the proper scale and functionality as those sold in Galaxy's Edge. While the Kowakian Monkey Lizards bears a close resemblance to the Banshees sold at PtWoA, there's never been anything like these sold in regular stores at this scale (full movie size), and certainly not with the functionality with the hand-held remote. The same goes for the Porg puppets and Rathars. The other stuffed animals and plastic pets have been sold in regular stores though in varying scales and packaging. The way items are sold in the Creature Stall is as unique as the "toys" themselves.

2. Clothing - Stores have been selling Star Wars themed costumes for decades, but I've never seen anywhere that allows you to buy clothing that is of such high quality and authenticity. The Jedi/Sith robes are multilayered and composed of thick, washable fabrics, not cheap polyester that will disintegrate after a single run through the wash. The biggest issue though is that you can plunk down over $100 on a Rey outfit, but can't wear it in the park, so I have to wonder what the point is to sell these pricey cos-play outfits if you can't actually cos-play in the only Star Wars themed lands on the planet.

3. Droid Depot - We didn't build a droid, but did take a walk through the shop. The biggest issue here is that Disney cannot keep up with demand for the most desirable parts. The rumor is that stock initially ordered to replenish DL's shelves has been rerouted to Orlando to avoid a similar problem, but I wonder if eventually Disney may have to resort to price controls to squash demand. While there were a few items in the Droid Depot I've seen in stores and online, most of the stock in the store was unique to Galaxy's Edge. I've seen similar R2-D2 and BB-8 droids, but not at the same scale or with the remote control. There are a few outlets that will sell similar full-size R2-D2 replicas (though most fans like to build their own from scratch as a hobby/challenge), but being able to walk up to and take a photo with the full-scale working version is a treat, and being able to order one for $25k is a rare luxury.

4. Dok Ondar's - I've definitely seen a number of the items sold in here, but mostly just through online specialty retailers. The items sold in here are rarely found in brick and mortar stores, so the ability of guests to physically see and touch some of these items is unique. You can definitely go online and see movie prop replicas sold here, but they're usually limited in styles/quantity, and quite pricey (with expensive shipping). While the stuff sold in here is not cheap, you're saving some on the shipping and definitely getting a much larger selection to choose from. As with the droids, Dok Ondar's at DL has a big issue with keeping up with demand for certain items, which hopefully won't be an issue at DHS. The items in the highest demand are the Kyber Crystals, which I think Disney completely misjudged the demand for. These little $13 pieces of plastic are much cooler than they appear since they can alter the sounds and colors emitted from the custom Lightsabers built at Savi's Workshop. In addition to the four colors that you can choose from when you build your Lightsaber (red, green, blue, and purple), the shop sells 2 more colors (yellow and white) along with the secret "black" crystals hidden inside red crystal packaging.
Because of the shortages, only red and blue were available in DL, and could only be purchased with a holocron, which upped the price to $50. This shop also sells a lot of cos-play gear, home decorations, and collectibles that just aren't found from any other retail outlet in the world. We're hoping DHS still has stock of the different colors when we're there in late January, though I wouldn't be surprised if the prices go up between now and then.

I was honestly pretty shocked at how many families were purchasing multiple lightsabers at Savi's Workshop. I'm a HUGE Star Wars fan, but still forced my son to "assist" in building a single Lightsaber with me instead of us each getting our own. I really felt that $200 was a fair price for the quality of the lightsaber combined with the uniqueness of the experience, but it's not something I would want to do again. I'd certainly wouldn't mind watching someone else fronting the cost to build a lightsaber just to be in that room, but I don't see myself paying $200 until my son is old enough to "need" his own. However, I cannot recommend the experience more for anyone who can afford it and is deeply attached to Star Wars - it is almost a religious experience.

There are two small stands on the Resistance side of Galaxy's Edge that sell some cool items like pilot's helmets and bags that I've never seen at the level of quality and detail anywhere else. Reportedly, there will be a much larger exit shop within the RotR attraction that was not open in DL when we were there, and probably won't open at DHS until December. It's unclear whether this store will just be an expanded selection of what's sold at these small stands or if it will contain more unique merchandise.

I think the biggest thing about the Galaxy's Edge merchandise is that it is almost completely devoid of classic "toys". I did see a couple of action figures (in special packaging), but not nearly the supply you see at Star Traders or Once Upon a Toy that are packaged on traditional cards and boxes. The items throughout the land are definitely unique, and if you can find them at stores or online, they're either not of similar quality or will carry significant shipping costs.

August 14, 2019, 11:56 AM

Russell - If you had $100 to spend on merch at SWGE, how would you spend it? The trip itself is setting me back a bit (we're staying on property for the full experience), so I need to behave financially!

August 14, 2019, 12:30 PM

I've been been off world twice. I've honestly not been compelled to purchase anything for myself yet. I think some of the "hand crafted" toys are very cool to look at, but none of them have called my name. I think building a droid or a light saber looks like a fun experience, but then I think, What would I do with them once I got home? I bought my husband a really nice Sphero R2-D2 for Christmas last year and while I enjoy playing with it every once in a while - mostly to freak out the cat - it spends most of its time on a shelf.
I am very curious to see what the stock on the shelves of the stores looks like a year after grand opening. Will Disney have stuck to their laserblasters and still only sell stuff that works in the story, or will there be merchandise with "Star Wars" branding on it. Time will tell.

August 14, 2019, 12:40 PM

..... and ever since SWGE at DL has been open, there has been "tweaks" made to the pricing of a lot of the merchandise at Dok-Ondar's and Toydarian.

No surprise .... it's all in the up direction LOL ... :)

August 14, 2019, 12:59 PM

Wow, that's a hard one Clayton. It really depends on what you're into. If you want to get a lightsaber, they do sell "legacy" models (pre-assembled units that look like the ones from the movies wielded by Rey, Luke, Yoda, etc...) starting at $110. These units lack the interchangeable Kyber crystal featured in the custom units from Savi's and the light-up blade (can purchase separately for $50), but are every bit as real as the $200 ones you can build. They also come with very nice storage/display cases not given with the Savi's models (though you do receive a carrying sleeve for your custom saber).

I guess the easiest way to spend $100 is to build a droid (my budget was $200, so the only souvenir we got was our lightsaber). However, that experience could be a money pit waiting to happen since after you've selected the parts for your droid and assembled it, you're apt to want to purchase additional parts and accessories for the droid not included in the build price, including a personality chip and the ever elusive (at least in DL) backpack that keeps you from looking like the "tourists" carrying their droids around in giant white cardboard boxes.

To get the most bang for your buck, I think you might want to get a number of different and unique items. My son was drawn to the Porg "shoulder riders", which are $20. They sit on your shoulder with a fabric coated metal pad underneath your shirt and a magnet in the base of the plush. We saw tons of these wandering around DL and DCA, but never actually saw any for sale in Galaxy's Edge (you can get them on Shop Disney if they're still out of stock in the parks), so we ended up getting one of Groot, which endeared a neat interaction with the real McCoy in front of Mission Breakout. You might also be drawn to the other plushes and unique creatures from the Creature Stall that will allow you room in that $100 budget to pick up a few items instead of spending it all in one place.

I really liked the quality of the pilot helmets, and for my money, the $50 for these may seem expensive for the "toys" they are, but they're not a huge departure from the $650 prop model quality style that you would put in a display case. The Resistance stands also had some of the best park-allowable clothing with jackets and shirts that were pretty authentic looking as well as being functional. The prices are a bit high, but you could get yourself a jacket and a t-shirt (or some patches to make that jacket unique) within your $100 budget. They also sell tons of pins, keychains, and other small tchotchkes in the $10-15 range. If you're still a Padawan, or have one in your group, they sell a clip-on braid along with tons of other hair accessories and hats (the Death Star officer hats are pretty convincing).

If you're visiting DL, keep your eyes peeled for the metal gift cards (worth asking a CM to see if they may be stashed at the register). Disney requires guests to put $100 on these cards, but they are a keepsake of their own, and if you're already planning to spend $100, you could put that $100 on the card and then spend it right away on the items you want to buy. Unfortunately when we were there 2 weeks ago, they were again out of stock (had just come back in the days before we arrived) and CMs had no estimate when they'd be back. As with all of the high demand items, I think DL is going to be slow to get stock back in since the rumor is that everything is being sent to WDW to make sure DHS doesn't run out of anything.

The one thing not necessarily Star Wars related that I would highly recommend you purchase is MaxPass. Even though MFSR doesn't have FP, purchasing MaxPass gets you PhotoPass for every day you're in the parks. I'm pretty particular with my camera, but I have to say that most of the PhotoPass photographers do an excellent job, and you can't replicate a "Magic Shot" without some really fancy editing programs. I wouldn't have minded collecting FPs the traditional way, but getting PhotoPass along with our daily MaxPass made the purchase more than worth it. There are a lot of PhotPass photographers throughout Galaxy's Edge that captured some incredible images that I would not have been able to get on my own, particularly the metering on our nighttime shots holding our lightsaber.

August 14, 2019, 1:06 PM

It's refreshing to hear people are still excited after visiting. Thanks Russell for the specifics and details about what you liked. Rob I hear you. I've got a bunch of shelves filled with cool stuff we rarely play with.

Personally I'd love to see more starships and vehicles. Hopefully we will see a greater variety of ship types and larger sizes. Could we get a podracer building site? Or let me customize my own x-wing or the best ship the B-wing! I think we have untapped potential!

Edited: August 14, 2019, 1:42 PM

@RumbleMike - I think Disney is kind of caught between a rock and a hard place with the merchandise. They want the stores to stay "in character", so in doing so, the items they sell must be authentic, realistic, and in scale. There are some toy ships and action figures, but for the most part, Disney is trying to keep the merchandise "in theme". The two build experience are for near or actual life-size and bonafide working items. I just don't see Disney flooding the stores with more toys that residents of Batuu don't need even if they are customize-able like the droids and lightsabers. While the droids are not full-scale, they still serve a practical purpose within the land and interact when turned on inside Galaxy's Edge. I'm not sure how a customized X-wing or B-wing (I've always been a Y-wing guy myself) would fit in since it would still just be a toy and serve no purpose on Batuu.

We didn't spend a lot of time in the Launch Bay store or in Star Traders, but it did seem like Disney beefed up the offerings in those locations if buying traditional retail toys is your thing. There's also the consideration of getting these things home, and I think Disney is pretty sensitive to the fact that items in giant boxes that are not associated with some type of "experience" are not going to move very quickly simply because many guests are not going to be able to get them home. I do find it funny that the TSA has a specific FAQ for Lightsabers.

August 14, 2019, 2:10 PM

That's a great point Russel. Keeping the merch "in character" is super tricky. If I worked there as a cast member, I'd refer to all of it as "Toys" or "Models" mostly because I could pivot based on the response a Guest gave me.

I wonder if they will keep the "build a lightsaber" stations around the parks. Those seem like good places to put custom ships and toys.

Y-wings are cool plus you tend to get a droid AND a copilot!

August 14, 2019, 2:36 PM

I don't expect Disney to eliminate the "build a lightsaber" stations, though I wonder if the one at the Star Tours gift shop in DHS will survive being so close to Galaxy's Edge (Star Traders at DL is pretty far from Galaxy's Edge in that park). The DHS Star Tours exit store is already pretty small, and I think would be served by regaining that floor space for more generic Star Wars merch that can't be sold in Galaxy's Edge. Those build stations do present a much more affordable alternative to Savi's for parents that are hesitant to buy their kids a $200 "toy", though I saw no shortage of Younglings building their own lightsabers at Savi's. You can also buy a pre-assembled plastic toy lightsaber in a couple of the Galaxy's Edge stores, though I saw far more people and kids carrying around ones from Savi's than the cheap plastic counterparts.

A lot of the models and higher end toys are being sold in Galaxy's Edge as "artifacts" and more along the lines of what I would call "museum-quality" pieces (lots of die-cast metal toys and heavier plastic items). I think they're probably right on the edge in terms of the number of these types of items they can reasonable sell in the land, and I'm sure it will continue to be a moving target as to what stock is replenished, and what items are allowed to vanish from shelves. I thought a few of the items were a bit on the corny side like the Jedi busts and other statuettes/maquettes, but I'm sure there's some SW fan out there that will scoop up anything Star Wars some day, plus they are cool to look at on the shelves even if they're not selling - like the $25k R2-D2 that Disney has actually sold a few of reportedly.




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