One of the best parts of loving comics, games and superhero-themed movies is that they usually have great toys associated with them. For a kid growing up alongside the development of the Transformers, Star Wars and similar series often had some of the coolest toys. Granted, there are some amazing products being released nowadays, but few are rare enough to garner much value. For those toys you used to play with instead of going outside no matter what your mom said, you might be sitting on a small fortune.
For some of the toys we looked at, finding one in a sealed box may bring in a ton of cash, but for many of these, they are so rare when found in a decent condition that their value might just surprise you. For this list, we looked through all manner of action figures and similar toys to come up with those that retained some serious value. If you have any of these, you are one lucky collector (and an even luckier kid since you got to play with them). We have decided to list these in order of potential value instead of the overall rarity though the two do tend to line up. Here are 15 Superhero Toys That Would Make You Rich.
15. ORIGINAL SERIES TMNT 1988
The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles made their first appearance with the publication of their first comic in 1984, written and penciled by Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird. Since then, they have been made into several animated television series, video games, movies (live-action and animated) and yes, a ton of toys. TMNT playsets, action figures and even coloring books have flooded toy bins for more than 30 years so you might want to check and see if you have any of the ones shown in the picture above.
The first series of toys pictured was released in 1988 and they are highly coveted by collectors. While you can usually find any of these online out of their blister packs for only $10 or so, a figure still within its original packaging in good condition can pull in up to $250 per figure with some going for more than others.
14. 8” MEGO SPIDER-MAN
The original Mego Spider-Man was released in 1979 and shouldn’t be confused with the newly-released version Diamond Select came out with in 2015. The original is, of course, the more valuable of the two and they are difficult to find. If you happen to stumble upon one of these in your attic that you somehow didn’t open, it could be worth up to $500. They occasionally pop up on Internet auction sites for less, but finding one in good condition is really the key.
Spider-Man toys are some of the most profitable due to their collectible nature, which is why we have more than one on this list. The Mego 8″ Spider-Man figure pictured here was so beloved, Diamond Select’s version was priced at $80 brand-new and collectors didn’t bat an eye but that could have something to do with their being a limited run of only 3,000.
13. SUPER POWERS CYBORG – $1,050
Outside the United States, kids had the option of collecting a line of figures created by Kenner Toys called Super Powers. The figures were created and shipped out of Kenner Canada, which created a Cyborg Action Figure with “Power Action thrusting Arms” in its third series. Cyborg is one of the most sought-after of all the Super Powers toys, though you will find one more further down the list.
Super Powers Cyborg figures tend to go for around $1,000 if left in their original packaging but can go for significantly less if they have been played with — even less if the additional arm attachments are missing. Cyborg was never released in bilingual packaging (French and English) like the others in the line, which may have contributed to its high degree of collectability.
12. NOMURA BATMAN ROBOT
Batman has been around for a long time, which has given many a toy company the opportunity to get in on the action of creating Dark Knight figurines, action figures, games and more. One of the most sought-after and valuable Batman toys on the market is the Nomura Barman Robot released in Japan, but there is a twist to which ones hold greater value.
As you can see in the image, the button on the Bat Utility Belt is red, but a rarer yellow-button version can fetch well over $1,300 in relatively decent condition. These toys were released in Japan in 1966 and stand 11″ high, which is difficult to tell from the picture. An interesting factoid about this toy: the feet are turned around backwards to allow for the batteries to fit. This was done purposefully by the designers, which results in the toy falling over forward.
11. FREDDY FUNKO SUPERMAN POP
The Freddy Funko Superman Pop #06 was released exclusively at the 2011 San Diego Comic Con, which certainly limits the number of figures on the market. These adorable guys go for around $1370, but they are pretty hard to come by so auctions tend to kick up the value even higher when he pops up online.
While this is a Superman collectible, it is also a Freddy Funko, which is a line of Pop toys created by Funko to be the company’s mascot. They are released sporadically, often for special events like Cons, and feature the character in various costumes with a big crown atop his head. They are highly sought-after by collectors and like pretty much every Funko Pop figure, they make for great collectibles that appear to retain their value.
10. IRON MAN, CAPTAIN AMERICA MINIFIGS
LEGO Minifigures may be relatively small toys, but that doesn’t mean the right one won’t bring in a lot of cash if you happen to have them. Attendees of the 2012 New York Toy Fair who were fortunate enough to receive the promotional set of figurines find themselves in a very small group as there were only 125 of them made. The Minifigures came packaged with a special pass, which, if included, can elevate the value of the Minifigures.
Unique to this set is a printed helmet for Iron Man and an altered shield design for Captain America. Because of the limited number of these made, they are highly collectible often bringing in nearly $2,000 when sold together though they can still fetch nearly a grand on the open market if sold individually making these LEGOs you wouldn’t mind stepping on (just don’t break them).
9. THE ARGENTINAN RIDDLER
Kenner’s Super Powers series released toys all over the world, including Argentina where the line was called Super Amigos. The figure that retains the highest value from this line is the Argentinean release of The Riddler, who made his first appearance in Detective Comics #140, written by Bill Finger and penciled by Dick Sprang in 1948.
Finding one of these in mint condition is going to be a task even the Riddler wouldn’t set Batman to find. Even at a relatively decent rating, you can expect to drop around $3,500 at an auction to acquire one of these. Granted, you would be better off finding one of these still in its packaging somewhere in your house, but like nearly every toy on this list and in our toy boxes growing up, it rarely remained unopened making these very rare.
8. ORIGINAL SUPERMAN ACTION FIGURE
The very first Superman Action Figure was made of wood in 1940 and it looks very different from Superman toys today. Superman first appeared in Action Comics #1, written Jerry Siegel and Penciled by Joe Shuster in 1938. There aren’t many of these action figures hanging around in very good condition, given that they are more than 75 years old, but some have made it into the 21st century without too much damage.
Not only was this the first Superman action figure ever made, it was also the very first superhero action figure. It came with a cloth cape, stood 13″ tall and sold for the disturbingly high price of $1.65 ($28.85 today). Given that it is worth $2,000 in near mint condition, that’s a significant increase in value — not to mention it’s fun to play with!
7. HE-MAN WITH BATTLE CAT SET
He-Man toys were a big deal during the 1980s and while you could have purchased Battle Cat and He-Man separately, some lucky kids nabbed the set pictured above. He-Man first appeared in comics back in 1981 with the release of a minicomic called He-Man and the Power Sword, written and penciled by Alfredo Alcala, but most people likely knew him from his television series.
If you happen to have this set sitting around your house and you never played with it, there might be something wrong with you. Despite not having the desire to play with some incredibly amazing toys, you are sitting on a small gold mine. This set can be found online in near-mint condition for around $7,000 though it has been known to exceed that depending on quality.
6. MEGO ELASTIC BATMAN
It is highly unlikely that you possess one of these babies. The reason for this might have something to do with the fact that there are only two in existence. When they were released in 1979 by Mego, Kenner felt it was too similar to its hit toyline Stretch Armstrong, so the company sued Mego, resulting in the termination of production on the line.
As there are only two known figures in existence, they don’t pop up online very often. The most recent sale went for $15,000 at auction. It’s no wonder Kenner sued over these toys — they may look like Batman, but that’s the only difference between this toy and a Stretch Armstrong figure. That being said, it would have been more fun to twist around the Dark Knight more than Mr. Armstrong, but Kenner sealed its fate so the world will never know.
5. CAPTAIN ACTION AS SPIDER-MAN
Captain Action was a line of toys released by the Ideal Toy Company to combat the highly-successful line of G.I. Joe toys coming out of Hasbro. Captain Action was meant to be an average fellow who came with some amazing accessories, which allowed him to become anything you wanted: an astronaut, a soldier and even a superhero like our friendly neighborhood Spider-Man.
Technically, the Spider-Man set for Captain Action was a clothing/costume accessory pack for the character, but it is very hard to find these days. The set came with a Spider-Man jumpsuit, Face Mask, Spider-Light, Utility Belt, Grappling hook with rope and handle, a Spider-Saw, Spray Tank and boots. A complete set can net upwards of $20,000 in an online auction making the set one of the most valuable costume accessories ever made.
4. BATMAN EQUIPMENT SET
We, at CBR, feel pretty strongly that every kid growing up, at one time or another, wished they could be Batman. We have all certainly said the iconic “I’m Batman” at one time or another, but it can be so hard to go through all the necessary training and gadget acquisition necessary to become the Dark Knight. For kids growing up in the ’60s, it was a bit easier with the release of the Official Batman Utility Belt pictured above.
The Official Batman Equipment Set came with a helmet, cape and utility belt, which came with a Batarang, rope, a pistol… for some reason… and several other items making it one of the best Batman playsets every released. Because these sets had so many pieces, finding an intact one with everything included is difficult, which is why you can expect to get $20,000 in an online auction.
3. 1978 LUKE SKYWALKER ACTION FIGURE
It shouldn’t come as a surprise to find a Star Wars figurine on this list; they are some of the most collectible toys on the planet, which is one of the reasons George Lucas is so happy. In 2015, a 1978 Luke Skywalker raked in $25,000 at an auction at Sotheby’s exceeding the expected amount of $12,000. The reason this particular Luke Skywalker is so valuable has to do with the lightsaber, which is double-telescopic.
The telescopic feature is the reason this figure was pulled from production making it so rare. The lightsaber would break too easily and nobody wants to sell a toy with such an obvious choking hazard–even in 1978. If you happen to have one of these with an intact lightsaber, even out of the packaging, it is still worth thousands.
2. 1979 BOBA FETT PROTOTYPE
One of the coolest toys ever released was a Boba Fett with a working rocket launcher. The spring-loaded rocket would shoot out of the figure and right down the throats of an unsuspecting child. That’s the reason these things were discontinued and it wasn’t the only one. There was a Battlestar Galactica toy that was responsible for the death of a child, which helped to bring an end to spring-loaded mini plastic projectiles.
The reason this particular Boba Fett is listed for $150,000 has to do with an auction where it was listed at that price (but didn’t sell). The one we are discussing here was a one-of-a-kind presented at a toy fair some lucky collector tried to unload on an episode of Pawn Stars and then eBay. If you happen to have one of the Boba Fett figures in good condition with the original rocket, you can expect to pull in around $16,000 or higher at auction.
1. PROTOTYPE G.I. JOE
The first ever G.I. Joe prototype holds the distinction of being the most expensive action figure ever sold at $200,000. The prototype was created in 1964 by Don Levine who created the figure by hand. Not only was the figure created by hand, the uniform and boots were hand-sewn as well and it came with a fabric belt and backpack, plastic helmet and canteen.
It’s unlikely you might stumble upon one of these when you are putting together your next garage sale given that there is only one in existence, but you might be fortunate enough to have an original G.I. Joe, which was created based off of this original design. Those can bring in some cash, but are hard to find complete and in good condition, though they are highly valued to collectors.
Do you have any of these treasures sitting in a box somewhere? Tell us all about your collection in the comments!
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