We talk to action figure collectors all the time and we love getting the chance to meet some of them in person at Comic Cons or at our retail store. I always love hearing about the collections, and usually I find out what type of collector a person is right off the bat.
Of course, lots of collectors have more than one "type" of collection going at a time, and some switch from one to another as their tastes change and develop. But most people I meet are avid about their reasons for collecting.
The Nostalgia Collector: These are people who loved action figures as children and continue to enjoy them for years. As adults, they may decide to fill in missing characters from old sets, locate figures they once owned, or finally buy themselves a few pieces they wanted but never got as kids. They tend to be focused on vintage pieces or re-released items, locating missing parts, or even finding the elusive mint-in-box figure from childhood.
Media Fans. These collectors focus on movies, comics, television shows or video game series action figures. Often they'll get every related character and watch for new releases.
Single-minded Collectors. These are easy to spot at home - I have a friend with every possible version of Batman figure imaginable. No Robins. No villains. But the Batman is all over her house in figures large and small, boxed and open! This type of collector wants one thing and one thing only - and they'll search high and low for a missing version of their favorite character.
Quality Collectors. These are the people who look for high-end figures with a lot of detail. While a specific movie fan may want every mass-produced figure, regardless of how many points of articulation and accuracy, some look at action figures as art. We have some amazingly detailed figures with accessories and paint that make them look almost lifelike. Some of our collectors love assembling shelves of these amazing action figures in lifelike poses.
Investment Collectors. These are the guys who stay on top of new releases and pop culture trends to buy figures they expect to rise in value. While all collectors certainly hope that will happen, some are banking on it!