Tuesday, September 16, 2014

DFC: Dragonriders of the Styx - Figures



Dimensions for Children, or DFC, produced the first true fantasy themed toy soldiers and playsets.  They tried to cash in on the Dungeons & Dragons craze of the early 1980s.  The line includes 20 original figures, all marked "DFC 1981" and "Hong Kong." DFC made five playsets and sold figures in header bags.   Sadly for DFC, they copied some of the figures right out of the AD&D Monster Manual and TSR either sued them or threatened them enough get them to remove the faces from two figures.  DFC got taken over by another company called Multi Toy a year or two after the line was first introduced.  Multi Toy continued to produce bags of figures, added two new playsets, and eventually moved production form Hong Kong to mainland China.  A few other small changes were made to a few more figures after the move to China and they started being marked "PRC" (Peoples Republic of China) instead of Hong Kong.  The figures were made in a much wider range of colors in China and some were made in soft rubber rather than plastic.  They also started using a distribution company called Sky Way Kids after the move.






DFC Hong Kong originals.



Demons & Gargoyles

These are the only ones actually called demons.











These are called gargoyles on the playset boxes but they seem more like demons to me.

These red demons/gargoyles are a little less common than the black.













These PRC plastic versions turn the chain into a rope.


















These are PRC soft rubber demons.  Fairly rare, but not super rare.















The PRC figures are bright orange/red plastic. These are very rare.
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These pink soft rubber demons are super rare.















These are even more rare orange and hot pink rubber demons.

I think these gray demons are knockoffs, but still very rare.




















Orcs & Ogres

Hong Kong ogres.













PRC ogres came in several shades of gray.  Make your own joke about that.  













The three on the left are soft rubber.  The mustard guy is plastic.  The two headed guy is a custom.


These pig faced orcs are a little bit harder to find than other DFC figures.  As far as I can tell, they were not made after the move to mainland China.  
























These guys are dead on copies of the orcs in the AD&D Monster Manual. 



























These faceless orcs are the result of TSR's aggressiveness in the early 1980s.  Harder to find than the original figures.
































Nagas / Snakemen

Original Hong Kong made nagas.











DFC and Multi Toy nagas with face removed thanks to TSR.











These are Hong Kong made, and seem to be a short lived run with ears but no face.  Fairly rare.
























Lavamen / Flamemen

These flamemen (lava creatures) are copies of the shambling mound from the AD&D Monster Manual, but they were never altered for some reason.















Wizards

Hong Kong made wizards have stars on the end of their wands.














These Multi Toy versions have balls in place of the star on the end of their wands and are marked PRC rather than "Hong Kong."  The white wizard is a very rare exception that has a star wand but is marked PRC.  I think just a very few figures were made in China before the molds were changed. 





















The unmodified PRC wizard also came in blue, which seems to be slightly more common than white.  I discovered his recently and went back over all of my star wand wizards and found a few blue ones marked PRC.  I still have only seen the one white wizard. I got him in a trade with a friend. 

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This is a mold flaw that looks like a different pose. 

Old wizard and really old wizard.
















































































Titans / Barbarians

The Hong Kong made Titans have spiked weapons.
















Multi Toy rounded off the Titan's weapons.


























These are very rare blue Titans that are PRC marked with unmodified weapons. 

These green Titans are also marked PRC.  Almost as rare as the blue. 

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Knights

Most of the Hong Kong made knights come in shades of blue.















These rare brown knights are original Hong Kong produced DFC.












These are the same bright red/orange as some of the Multi Toy demons.  The larger bases also give them away as made in mainland China.












These black PRC knight are some of the very last production.














The larger bases are about the only thing different about these Multi-Toy knights.












Multi-Toy also made several shades of blue.












These are soft rubber versions of the knights.












Only Multi-Toy made these green knights.











These are rare PRC maked knight that have the original smaller base.















These are slightly smaller knockoffs with modified weapons.




















Dragons

I have also seen the dragon in yellow.

















Green dragons are the most common.













Flat black and glossy black.  
























12 comments:

  1. Amazing DFC collection. I really love those pink demons and have never seen them in that color before your post.

    I also never knew the reason why some of the figures had blank faces. Thanks for the info.

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  2. Awesome page! I really need a green wizard for a custom quarriors game board. I have a blue, red, and black wizard with star wand. I can never find a green one, so if you ever come across one you don't want I would love to buy it or trade figs for it!! Keep up the great work :D

    tauntaunrustler@gmail.com

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  3. Hang on for a while and I might have a green wizard to trade. I still have a lot of stuff to sort and photograph and probably won't get much done once the holidays start, but I hope to put a trade list together in Jan. or Feb. I'll keep an eye out for a green wizard for you.

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  4. The faceless Orcs were sad. I had some. Faces weren't rounded off like the Naga, but cut off.
    I remember seeing the knights in the early 90's as "party favor toys" in the decorating/party supply aisle at some store. They were black or grey.

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  5. You have stated that the hard rubber orange demon with the straight sword is rare...would that include any color for the hard rubber straight sword figures? I have two of them in black, but the condition is not that great. I recently bought a lot of quite a few of the rubber demons, mostly black in all the poses like you have, and two of the rubber light pink with pole axes. The lot also had two pink rubber wizards, and two hard plastic black wizards with stars, marked prc. I see you have that in white? Also, were most of the demons from prc rubber as I only have one black plastic one. I love all the variations...can't wait to find more!

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  6. The black rubber demons are more rare than the black or red plastic demons, but not as rare as the pink, hot pink or orange rubber demons. I'm not sure if they are more or less rare than the orange plastic demons. I suspect that the orange plastic demons are a little more rare than the black rubber demons, but maybe not. Sounds like you got a great lot. Those pink wizards are fairly rare as well.

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  7. I just found a few factory sealed bags of lavamen if you need any, let me know. I can be reached at cargocultmagister, that is a good ole' gmail address.

    I've also got some faceless orcs and various heroes/villains, but they have a ton of playwear.

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  8. That stuff sounds very interesting. Please send me an email at fantasytoysoldiers@gmail.com I was not able to get an email to cargocultmagister to send.

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  9. Man... these bring back some memories. I was about 9 or 10 when these came out, and my dad bought me a whole bunch of them. I had such fun playing with them all. The toys from the 1970's and 1980's are the best ever.

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  10. I feel like I've hit the jackpot with your blog. I've been trying to remember this line of toys forever since my brother and I loved playing with them so many years ago. This is such a fantastic reference!

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  11. OMG help i have ben looking for these figs ever since i was a kid and lot mine i will not say how just that it broke my hart i will bye if there are any still for sale pleas let me know thank you
    (william)

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    Replies
    1. None are for sale, check my trade lists.

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