Ever since the mainstream popularity of the WWE (then WWF) in the 1980s, wrestling action figures have had their spots on toy shelves. The figures were originally made by LJN as large rubber wrestlers. When Hasbro took over, small, three-inch figures with movable parts were created. Jakks Pacific took over the line in the mid-1990s and introduced six-inch figures with more details, movements and costumes. Depending on the series, quality and other factors, the wrestling figures in your toy box, basement or attic could be worth a lot.
WWE Classic Superstars
In 2009, the top collector's series is the WWE Classic Superstar collection. This collection began in 2003 and is developed by the Jakks Pacific toy company. Many of these figures are worth more than older figures because of the detail and the collection aspect that they represent. The figures include a wide roster of legendary WWE wrestlers including Hulk Hogan, Yokozuna, The Undertaker, Ric Flair, Jimmy Snuka, and The Ultimate Warrior. A Series 1 Hulk Hogan figure is worth about five times as much as a Series 8 Hulk Hogan and could get around $75, while the latter would only be worth around $15. There are over 15 different series of Classic Superstars with each series representing eight or more figures.
The case quality is one of the most important factors for valuing a figure. Any holes, tears, scratches or bends in the cardboard will dramatically reduce the value--by over fifty percent. For example, a figure worth $50 dollars could be worth less than $10 if there is a dent or damaged casing. Wholsalecases.com sells WWE specific cases that will hold any single wrestler Jakks Pacific figure. These cases will protect the cases from physical damage and are great for display.
Mistakes and variant figures are worth a lot more than standard issue figures. For example, the Earthquake Classic Superstar action figure comes with either painted on chest hair or glue-on hair. The glue-on hair is a rare find and valued higher than the painted hair because those details make the figure more realistic. More variants include a backwards-inserted Ultimate Warrior, an N.W.O Hulk Hogan, and figures made specifically for countries like Canadian editions of Hulk Hogan. The Ultimate Warrior backwards variant may be valued at $25 while the regular is valued around $20.
Find the current value of your figures by visiting wrestling collector websites. At sites like Wrestlingfigs.com, you will find collectors who have the most demand for the figures. Selling figures through these forums could earn more money than from a dealer, because you go straight to a buyer. A $20 figure could get the full $20 rather than $15 from a dealer. The websites also have a full database of the figures so you can see which series your figure is from.
Certain things may increase the value of your figure. Store and online exclusives like Target, Toys R Us or Wrestling Figures Inc. automatically make the figure rare and hard to find. Obtaining the actual wrestler's autograph on a figure will also increase the value. Prove the signature is real by taking a photo of the wrestler signing the figure. Visit toy conventions to purchase exclusive figures like the limited edition Ric Flair retirement figure. Only hundreds of them are produced and increase in value almost immediately.