Earlier today, the long awaited, highly anticipated Callsign: Longbow project launched on Kickstarter. As a quick synopsis, CS: Longbow is a love letter to retro, 1:18 scale, military themed action figures.
So, back to the campaign: Callsign: Longbow reached its funding goal in SIX HOURS! Yes, you read that right! In less than a full working day, the campaign has secured its initial funding and has moved on to tackling stretch goals! Check it out –
CALLSIGN: LONGBOW™ is a line of “retro” style o-ring action figures aimed at vintage collectors, modern collectors, and general action figure enthusiasts. The alternate history storyline takes place starting in 1985, and follows an American Covert Operations unit through the late 1980s, as they work to thwart the spread of Soviet Influence and the rise of mysterious new threats!
There is a whole world of LONGBOW™ to explore with multiple characters, heroes and villains, and a fun, exciting, action-packed storyline that will expand with each future product wave.
CALLSIGN: LONGBOW™ flashes back to the adventure and nostalgia of 1980s era action figures. The line features the same articulation as the o-ring figures (with metal t-hooks) of the time, with a twist- the addition of swivel wrists!! These ABS and PVC figures will feel and look like the classic figures you remember with an even better range of motion. And the best part is that the hands are made of a flexible material to prevent broken thumbs!
CALLSIGN: LONGBOW™ figures will come in one of two different packaging configurations. Standard figures will come awesomely carded on standard 9″ x 6″ cardback, just like in the 1980s. Crowdfunding exclusive figures and MTF: Retro-Ops figures will come bagged with a bio card, just like mail away exclusives of the 1980s. Regardless of the packaging style, all figures will include character art painted by the legendary Doug Hart (of G.I. Joe, Transformers, Visionaries, Air Raiders, Stargate and many other classic brands).
In order to demonstrate the overall quality and look of our figures, we’ve taken LANCER from concept all the way to paint-master prototype. For this Kickstarter, all figures will be shown as design illustrations. We plan to add prototype images and paint-master images as they are completed. Expect regular updates as milestones in the project are reached.
Initial CALLSIGN: LONGBOW™ Figures
The initial LONGBOW™ offering for this project included 4 (four) fully articulated and individually carded figures. We are offering 2 (two) good guys (SCOTT “LANCER” MCMASTERS & ALBERTO “UPTOWN” CHAPMAN) and 2 (two) bad guys (ALEXY “VOLK” REZNIKOV & GRU SPETSNAZ Trooper, Army Builder) so you can have a proper battle right out of the gate!
Participation in the CALLSIGN: LONGBOW™ Kickstarter can be anywhere from $1, to a single $25 item, to the “All-in” and “Double All-In” levels with EVERYTHING released, to several “You Choose” levels! “You Choose” levels range from “Pick Any 4 Figures” up to the “Double All-In + Pick Any 100 Figures” level! The higher the participation level the better the value!
Backers can add ANY original item and/or unlocked Stretch goal items to their reward package for the additional cost of said item.
Note: International Backers will be charged more for shipping and customs taxes depending on the country of purchase/delivery.
Please review the various contribution levels for details about the participation level best for you.
How does Kickstarter work?
Contribute the amount you want for the desired participation levels with your desired rewards.
If you decide you want additional items (either unlocked stretch goal items, more of the currently available items or move to a higher level), you can add to your contribution at ANY TIME during the event.
After the Kickstarter event ends, we will send a Backerkit survey where you can tell us EXACTLY what figures you want for your pledge amount and your shipping information.
You’ll also have the opportunity to add additional items during the Backerkit.
Project Target Funding Goal – $78,000
Our target funding goal is $78,000 to produce the first 4 new items: Alberto “Uptown” Chapman, Keith “Outlaw” Overby, Alexy “Volk” Reznikov, and GRU SPETSNAZ Trooper. The planned release date for the CALLSIGN: LONGBOW™ figures is December 2023. We are using December 2023 as the target available date based on the initial items in the event. Note that this time frame is an estimate and could change depending on how many additional figures stretch goals are unlocked. It’s logical that the more that has to be produced, the longer it will take the factory to complete the items. More awesome figures are always better, and with your support we can make it happen!
In addition to these awesome retro CALLSIGN: LONGBOW™ action figures, we also have some great Add-Ons that can be added to your pledge.
1. We are excited to offer a CALLSIGN: LONGBOW™ #1 Kickstarter Exclusive cover by the legendary Rod Whigham (produced by Broken Icon Comics). * Note the comic and cover will be in full color, not black and white, the current image is just a placeholder.
All of these items will be included for free in any “all-in” packages.
If we are fortunate to meet our starting $78,000 funding goal, we have many, many stretch goals ready to add to the campaign. Highly desirable stretch goals to allow us to release MORE “retro” o-ring figures, with a wide array of new gear AND weapons! ANY UNLOCKED Stretch Goal can be added to reward packages or as an Add-On for their single unit price + added shipping and customs to the country of purchase/deliver!
If we do unlock all the below listed stretch goals…we have SEVERAL more “surprise” Stretch Goal items to add to the event!
The CALLSIGN: LONGBOW™ Kickstarter is scheduled to run for just over 30 days to give people ample opportunity to back our initial offering. If you know someone who would be interested in these kinds of figures, please share with them and help us unlock more amazing LONGBOW™ action figures!
In addition to more CALLSIGN: LONGBOW™ figures to unlock, we are also excited to tell you that we have partnered with the legendary MARAUDER “Gun-Runners” to bring you a MARAUDER TASK FORCE: RETRO-OPS figure stretch goals. These are the first ever o-ring MTF figures and combines the design of some of their best figures with the retro 1980s construction and aesthetic.
Stretch Goal #1 – “OUTLAW” – $108,000
The first stretch goal beyond initial funding in the campaign will be LONGBOW™ CQB Specialist KEITH “OUTLAW” OVERBY. Once Unlocked, “Outlaw” can be added to any package or selected as part of a pledge reward in the Backerkit.
Stretch Goal #2 – “GHOST” – $138,000
The next stretch goal is the mysterious and deadly STEEL WEB™ Infiltrator 霞-死神 AKA “GHOST”. This is the first STEEL WEB™ character in that will be revealed, but for now he is a deadly enigma to our heroes. Once Unlocked, “Ghost” can be added to any package or selected as part of a pledge reward in the Backerkit.
Stretch Goal #3 – MTF: RETRO-OPS – $168,000
For stretch goal #3 Grindstone Toys is proud to partner with the renown MARAUDER “Gun-Runners” to bring you the first ever MTF: RETRO-OPS figure! This design is a “retro-ized” version of the popular MTF DESERT-OPS MKII figure. Once Unlocked, “MTF: Retro-Ops (Desert-Ops)” can be added to any package or selected as part of a pledge reward in the Backerkit.
Stretch Goal #4 – SURPRISE GOAL
Stretch Goal #5 – SURPRISE GOAL
Stretch Goal #6 – SURPRISE GOAL
and many, many more…
Who is Grindstone Toys?
Grindstone Toys was founded in 2019 and is a partnership between life long figure enthusiasts and designers Troy McKie (Marauder Task Force, ROBOSKULL MKII, Action Force, Dime Novel Legends, G.I. Joe, Transformers, Star Wars) and John Kukovich (Complex, ROBOSKULL MKII). Gindstone’s first figure was funded as a stretch goal in the wildly successful Roboskull MKII project by Skeletron Toys.
But John and Troy can’t do it on their own. They rely on a team of skilled artists, production specialists, and consultants to bring LONGBOW™ to life. We’d like to take a moment to thank these contributors for their support:
Dave Proctor (Spartan Toys), MJ Sullivan (Marauder “Gun-Runners”), Ben Conway & Mark O’Byrne (Skeletron), Douglas Hart, Rod Whigham, Eric Watkins & Nick Wentland (Broken Icon Comics), Paul Kirschstein (Raginspoon Toys), Phil Albritton (Power Kid Design), George Greenoe, Brian Sauer, Mikey Kukovich, R Carson Mataxis (3djoes), and our extremely understanding families.
LONGBOW™ can deploy anywhere! We are proud to offer international shipping to our allies fighting the spread of communism around the World. VAT Tax EU/UK NOTE: If the project funds, the required VAT Tax will be collected during the BackerKit, AFTER the Kickstarter ends. VAT Tax is NOT included in the listed prices.
CALLSIGN: LONGBOW™ figures are intended for Adult Collectors Ages 14+.
Colors and design elements are subject to change for final production pieces.
If funded, this Kickstarter will be fulfilled by Grindstone Toys, LLC. Project collaborator Marauder GR, as well as any others collaborators bear no responsibility for fulfillment of this Kickstarter. Grindstone Toys is not affiliated, associated, authorized, endorsed by, or in any way officially connected with G.I. Joe, The Corps! or any other compatible o-ring figure brands. Figures shown from other brands are only to illustrate compatibility.
©2022 Grindstone Toys LLC. All rights reserved.
Risks and challenges
Manufacturing has inherent risks and new projects have their own unique challenges. Supply chain interruptions, shipping delays, and unforeseen delays due to the pandemic have become typical around the globe. We understand these risks and have mitigated them to ensure this campaign is successful. We are partnered with an experienced factory and factory representative with years’ of experience with limited run, collector-focused action figure lines (supplier to Marauder, Boss Fight Studio, Valaverse, and more.) This partner team has a proven track record for delivering high quality products with the capability to make adjustments as needed during the production process. Though timing delays are always possible, we have full confidence that our team will bring our products to market, just as they have done consistently for others for many years.
I’ve gone all in, what about you?