The original game, marketed by Ertl, sold just under 500,000 worldwide, in 18 months. Tomy anticipates sales of one million for the new version with some 500,000 of those in Europe.
“Tomy are doing a very different job than was done by Ertl in 1999,” explained Tomy boss Robert Mann. “Ertl weren’t a games company but Tomy is, so we have got the distribution channel that is needed.
“The potential is for reaching a million units in the first period. We’re looking for around 500,000 in Europe with possibly around 300,000 of those in the UK.
The worldwide launch of the game is on July 28th. The first scrutiny period is on December 31st and if there is a winner it will be announced then.
Tomy is working with Hamleys as its UK launch partner. Inventor Christopher Monckton will have a feature in-store the day before launch. There will also be individual promotions in retailers and trials in shopping centres. Much of the promotion will be PR-based, with coverage through the national press.
“Most people will be able to complete 95 per cent of the puzzle. It’s the final five per cent that is the most difficult,” added Mann.
“It’s one of those products that won’t be price-promoted because of the nature of it, so it’s a good opportunity to compete at the same level for a change.”