Your Star Wars Action Figures Could Be Worth Thousands: Here’s How to Sell Them
We help you find out how much your Star Wars action figures are worth and where to sell Star Wars action figures in this comprehensive guide
Do you have Star Wars action figures to sell? That Luke Skywalker, Darth Vader or Boba Fett that’s been packed away for decades or picked up on a garage sale hunch could be worth hundreds – or even thousands. Here, we present the definitive guide to selling Star Wars action figures.
Our Star Wars action figure selling guide includes:
- What are the most valuable Star Wars action figures?
- What makes Star Wars action figures valuable?
- How much are your Star Wars action figures worth?
- Where to sell your Star Wars action figures
- Star Wars action figure selling tips
If you’re ready to sell your Star Wars action figures, don’t be a buckethead. Instead, use this guide to get the most money for your Star Wars action figures.
What are the most valuable Star Wars action figures?
The average retail value for a common Star Wars action figure is $2 to $5. The average loose vintage figure is worth $10 to $20. Sealed Star Wars action figures produced between 1977 and 1985 are worth between $100 and $200, but some are worth up to $1,000, $10,000 or more. Real-world eBay auction price examples are listed below.
|ACTION FIGURE||VALUE (on card, mint condition)||VALUE (loose)|
|Boba Fett with rocket firing mechanism (1979)||Up to $45,000||Up to $10,000+ loose|
|Jawa with vinyl cape (1978)||Up to $6,000||Up to $2,000 loose|
|Double telescoping Luke Skywalker (1978)||Up to $1,000||Up to $800 loose|
|Yak Face (1985)||Up to $2,300||Up to $300 loose|
|Double telescoping Obi-Wan Kenobi (1978)||Up to $30,000||Up to $10,000 loose|
|Double telescoping Darth Vader (1978)||Up to $30,000||Up to $10,000 loose|
|FX-7 UK Release (1980)||Up to $11,500 (set in 2014 auction)||Up to $20 loose|
|Blue Snaggletooth (1978)||Up to $700 (sealed in original plastic bag – this figure was not carded)||Up to $200 loose|
|Han Solo “Small Head” (1980)||Up to $2,500||Up to $50 loose|
|Vlix Brazil Release (1985)||Up to $4,000||Up to $600 loose|
|Anakin Skywalker with Collector’s Coin Canadian Release (1985)||Up to $7,500||Up to $165 loose|
|Sources: Lifehacker, CBR, Gunaxin, ToyWorth|
Any given Star Wars action figure is worth whatever someone will pay for it, but experts agree on several notable examples that carry high value.
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One of those is the original “farm boy” Luke Skywalker, which featured a double-telescoping lightsaber, says Martin Thurn, President of the Washington DC Star Wars Collecting Club and a collector since 1978 who serves on the steering committee for the Collector’s Stage at Star Wars Celebration.
“His yellow lightsaber was made of two pieces of plastic – a hollow tube and a tiny inner shaft that extended out from his arm. Hundreds, maybe thousands, of this double-telescoping toy were mailed out in early 1978 to lucky holders of the Early Bird Certificate package,” says Thurn. “However, due to safety concerns, the lightsaber soon had to be redesigned as one solid piece of plastic, and that’s what the other million Lukes have. A complete original double-telescoping Luke in mint condition can easily fetch $1,000.”
A collection of Star Wars action figures owned by a member of the Washington DC Star Wars Collecting Club. Source: Martin Thurn
Another example of a valuable Star Wars action figure is the vinyl-caped Jawa. Late in the sales process, the manufacturer, Kenner, felt the vinyl cape looked and felt cheap, so it was replaced with a plush fabric robe with hood. Thurn says only a few hundred vinyl-caped Jawa made it to store shelves, while nearly one million were sold in the cloth robe, driving the value of a complete original vinyl-caped Jawa in mint condition to $2,000 – and as much as $6,000 if it’s still in the original packaging.
The holy grail of Star Wars action figures is the 1979 Boba Fett with rocket firing mechanism, says Matt Fox, host of the “This Week in Star Wars” podcast. Fox began collecting Star Wars toys in 1978 at age six.
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“These seldom change hands, but when they do, we’re talking five figures on a bad day,” says Fox.
The rocket-firing Boba Fetts were initially offered as a mail promotion, but cancelled before being released to the public.
“Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus, but no child ever received a [rocket-firing] Boba Fett unless the missile was glued firmly in place at the factory,” says Thurn.
Despite being cancelled, the prototypes and few production examples that were made of the rocket-firing Boba Fett ultimately found their way into the hands of collectors.
“It was never released, and there are varying reports about how many exist – and in different production forms,” says Brian Schutzer, CEO of Neat Stuff Collectibles, a company that buys Star Wars action figures and sells them on eBay. “Some are made of different material, few are unpainted, and then there are ones missing the rocket itself.”
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In fact, the most expensive Star Wars action figure ever sold at auction is a rocket-firing Boba Fett, which went for $34,000 at a 2016 Vectis auction – though Schutzer says they can be worth as much as $45,000 in excellent condition.
Star Wars action figure average values
Of course, these represent some of the rarest and most sought-after Star Wars action figures; and though it’s certainly possible to find a diamond in the rough, the average loose vintage figure is worth $10 to $20, says Fox. Action figures still mounted on the original cards are typically worth $100 to $200.
“Star Wars figure values, when plotted against time of initial release, can be viewed as an inverted bell curve. The very first figures and the very last figures are generally the most valuable,” says Fox. “At the bottom of the bell curve, the average loose vintage figure will fall in the $10 to $20 range; still mounted on the original card, ten times that.”
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Schutzer says the average value of sealed Star Wars action figures produced between 1977 and 1985 is around $80, with a range from $30 to $3,000; and some variants are worth up to $10,000 or more. However, the average collection he sees are comprised of loose figures, which are usually missing their weapons.
“The average retail value for common loose stuff is $2 to $5; unfortunately, collections that typically have about 40 figures total are only worth $100 to $200,” he says. “Condition and completeness are definitely key factors.”
These values only apply to vintage Star Wars action figures – the average figure produced from the early 1990’s to the present is worth only a couple of dollars.
“They were produced in such high quantities that it killed the collector market,” says Schutzer. “We get about 20 calls a day regarding these figures, and unfortunately we are the bearers of bad news when we tell them their 20-year-old Star Wars figures, brand new, are worth $2 each.”
What makes Star Wars action figures valuable?
Several factors combine to dictate a given Star Wars action figure’s value, including:
- Whether they’re loose (no packaging) or on the original card (in packaging)
“Loose figures lose value if they have wear and tear such as missing paint or loose limbs,” says Fox. “Carded figures lose value if the card and/or clear plastic bubble is bent or crushed.”
Variants, like the vinyl cape Jawa and small head Han Solo, can be highly valuable for their rarity and desirability. Vintage Star Wars Collectors features an excellent post about different Star Wars action figure variants and what they mean to collectors.
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“The general rule for collectibles is ‘scarcity creates value,’ and this certainly applies when it comes to Star Wars figures,” says Schutzer. “The most value pieces are going to be the most rare. It’s very important to rule out any mistakes as well as rule out the possibility of reproductions, which do exist.”
The original Star Wars action figures tend to be the most valuable; however, it’s important to note there are multiple Star Wars action figure series, as described by Jedi Business:
|Star Wars Action Figure Series||Years Produced|
|Kenner (original series)||1978-1985|
|Hasbro Power of the Force||1995-2000|
|Hasbro Shadows of the Empire||1996|
|Hasbro Episode I||1999-2000|
|Hasbro Power of the Jedi||2000-2002|
|Hasbro Star Wars Saga||2002-2004|
|Hasbro Star Tours Disney||2002-Present|
|Hasbro Clone Wars||2003-2005|
|Hasbro Trilogy Collection||2004-2005|
|Hasbro Revenge of the Sith||2005-2006|
|Hasbro Saga Collection||2006-2007|
|Hasbro 30th Anniversary Collection||2007-2008|
|Hasbro Legacy Collection||2008-2010|
|Hasbro Clone Wars (second version)||2008-2013|
|Hasbro Shadow of the Dark Side||2010-2012|
|Hasbro Vintage Collection||2010-2013|
|Hasbro Walmart 3D||2012-2013|
|Hasbro Movie Heroes||2012-2013|
|Hasbro Legacy Collection (second version)||2013|
|Hasbro Saga Legends||2013-2014|
|Hasbro Black Series (3¾ inch)||2013-Present|
|Hasbro Black Series (6 inch)||2013-Present|
|Hasbro Saga Legends Rebels||2014-2015|
|Hasbro The Force Awakens||2015-2016|
|Hasbro Rogue One||2016-2017|
|Hasbro The Last Jedi||2017-2018|
“The first 12 figures, released in 1978, were produced in larger numbers than all the other figures, and were the most popular, and their value today is based on that familiarity, the fact that they were the original figures, and the perceived rarity,” says Fox. “The later figures – the last 15 to be released, plus a few of the follow-on figures from the animated Droids and Ewoks cartoons – are valuable because they were produced in smaller amounts, and so many of the kids had moved away from Star Wars at that point (1985) that these were not collected in the same numbers.”
The first 12 Star Wars action figures were (sorry, no Yoda yet!):
- Luke Skywalker
- Princess Leia
- Ben Kenobi
- Darth Vader
- Death Squad Commander
- Han Solo
- Sand People
A collection of R2-D2’s owned by members of the Washington DC Star Wars Collecting Club. Source: Martin Thurn
Thurn says there are a few companies that specialize in grading toys (and Star Wars toys represent the vast majority of what they process). He says the condition scale runs from zero to 100, but “there are no standards for what any particular number means, except that 100 would mean the toy was never touched by human hands, which is impossible due to the Heisenberg Principle.”
“Apart from rare figures that will always command a premium, the rule of thumb is one simple word: condition, condition, condition,” he says.
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Action Figure Authority, which provides action figure grading services, lists two commonly-used grading scales for Star Wars action figures: modern and standard.
The standard grading scale follows the zero to 100 rating method, but adds three levels: gold, silver, and bronze, where:
|STANDARD GRADING SCALE|
|Gold||85+ to 100|
|Silver||75 to 85|
|Bronze||10 to 70|
|A plus symbol (+) can be added to a grade to signify that an action figure is in above-average condition for its rating|
The modern grading scale is intended for action figures manufactured after 1995, and grades from 1 to 10, in increments of 0.25. Like the standard scale, the modern scale applies gold, silver, and bronze levels:
|MODERN GRADING SCALE|
|Gold||9 to 10|
|Silver||7.5 to 8.5|
|Bronze||1 to 7|
Some toy collectors use the “C” scale to grade action figures, as follows:
|C-10||Flawless mint condition|
|C-9||Near-flawless mint condition|
|C-8||Excellent condition with no play wear|
|C-7||Very find condition with minor play wear|
|C-6||Fine with some flaws and play wear|
|C-5||Very good with significant play wear|
|C-4||Good with heavy damage and/or missing accessories|
|C-3||Poor, broken with missing parts|
Before you sell your Star Wars action figures, you might want to familiarize yourself with the following terms:
|ACTION FIGURE KEY TERMS|
|MIMP||Mint In Mint Package|
|MINMP||Mint In Near Mint Package|
|MOC||Mint On Card|
|MONMC||Mint On Near Mint Card|
|MIP||Mint In Package|
|MIMB||Mint In Mint Box|
|MIB||Mint In Box|
|NRFB||Never Removed From Box|
|VHTF||Very Hard To Find|
|Loose||An action figure that has been removed from its original packaging|
“Condition affects everything. There are more incomplete figures than complete figures, and more complete figures than sealed figures,” says Schutzer. “Condition and completeness bring a $6 figure to $15. Damaged but sealed could bring that to $60. Near mint, $100. Condition and completeness issues can result in a depreciation of up to 95 percent of value with the average figure.”
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How much are your Star Wars action figures worth?
As stated, average retail value for a common Star Wars action figure is $2 to $5; the average value for a vintage loose Star Wars action figure is $10 to $20; the average value for a Star Wars action figure on its original card is $100 to $200; and there are several notable Star Wars action figures that are worth $1,000 or more.
It begs the question: how much are your Star Wars action figures worth? Here’s how to find the value of your Star Wars action figures.
eBay sold listings
Search eBay for the Star Wars action figure you have, then select “Sold Listings” in the left-hand column to see recently-completed auctions. Make sure your action figure matches the description, year, and condition for an accurate comparison.
“Searching eBay for completed auctions is the best and most current guide for value,” says Fox. “Be sure to pay attention to lots that actually sold. ‘Asking price’ is a lot different than ‘paid!’”
Schutzer concurs: “Nothing beats real market data. It’s very important that you take that extra step to look at values of only items that have actually sold. It doesn’t cost anything to throw an item up on eBay with a crazy asking price, so don’t look at what sellers are asking, look at what is actually selling.”
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Collector clubs and forums
Search for local and online Star Wars collector clubs and see if you can get help from club members. You don’t want to ask them to do the work for you, but many will be happy to point you in the right direction. You can also check out online forums like The Cantina and Rebel Scum for advice.
Printed price guides
There are many printed Start Wars price guides available, but they’re not the best resources for current value.
“The market for Star Wars toys changes so rapidly that physical guidebooks would be obsolete before the ink dries,” says Thurn. “That said, there are some excellent books that hold value as providing history and information, and can serve as bulky checklists. These include Star Wars: The Ultimate Action Figure Collection and The Ultimate Guide to Vintage Star Wars Action Figures.”
Online price guides
You can check the value of your Star Wars action figures on the following websites:
- South West Figures Star Wars Price Guide
- Star Wars Tracker
- Kovels Star Wars Price Guide
- DASH Action Figures Price Guide
If you’re not sure which Star Wars action figure you have, you can search the Jedi Business Star Wars Action Figure Database to get more information.
|Star Wars Action Figure||Sold Price|
|Jawa Vinyl Cape on card AFA 80||$12,766.00|
|Princess Leia MOC AFA 90 (1978)||$8,502.99|
|Villain Set VHTF on card (1978)||$4,700.99|
|Luke Skywalker Hoth MOC AFA 80 (1982)||$4,000.00|
|Han Solo Large Head MOC AFA 90 (1978)||$3,550.01|
|C-3PO MOC AFA 90 (1978)||$2,390.00|
|Ben Kenobi MOC AFA 80 (1978)||$1,771.00|
|Blue Snaggletooth Loose AFA 85 (1978)||$1,449.99|
|Luke Skywalker Stormtrooper AFA 80 (1985)||$999.99|
|Boba Fett MOC (1978)||$560.00|
|Darth Vader NIP (1978)||$560.00|
|Obi Wan Kenobi on card||$99.00|
|Jawa Large Hood (1978)||$50.00|
|Chewbacca Loose (1978)||$20.00|
|Han Solo Small Head Loose (1978)||$10.00|
Where to sell Star Wars action figures
Once you have a good idea of what your Star Wars action figures are worth, you can confidently sell them and know you’re getting a fair deal. You have several Star Wars action figure selling options.
Here are some places you can sell you Star Wars action figures, including pros, cons, and reviews (where available). Compare each to identify the option that’s best for you.
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Peer-to-peer selling platforms
Sell directly to collectors via these peer-to-peer platforms.
- Buyers are typically knowledgeable and understand the value of your Star Wars action figures
- Convenient, since you can complete your sales online
- Tend to pay the most money
- Seller fees might be applied
- There is no guarantee of sale (or it could take a long time to sell)
- Potential for disputes
- There is no expert assistance – you must conduct your own research to set prices
Online Star Wars action figures and toy buyback companies
Lots of online toy stores buy Star Wars action figures. Their business model is to resell them for a profit, but despite being middlemen they offer unique benefits like guaranteed sales and quick payouts.
- Guaranteed sales (typically)
- Quick payments
- Easy, convenient process
- Free shipping (in many cases)
- Pays less than other markets
- Though payments are quick, they are not instant
- Potential for disputes if you misrepresent or miscommunicate what you have to sell (even if it’s an honest mistake)
- Neat Stuff Collectibles
- Brian’s Toys
- BB Novelties
- K&C Collectibles
- Dallas Vintage Toys
- Robbies Hobbies
- Kokomo Toys and Collectibles
- Comics N Toys
- Rogue Toys
- Final Frontier Toys and More
- The Toy Vault
- Back to the Past
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Brick and mortar stores and flea markets
You can sell your Star Wars action figures to local buyers like toy stores, comic book stores, pawn shops, and flea markets. Payment is instant, via either cash or store credit. Like online buyback stores, local shops need to resell for a profit.
“‘Real world’ alternatives include local toy shows, flea markets, and comic book stores,” says Fox. “And be sure to look up a Star Wars collecting club in your city or state!”
- Instant payouts
- You do not need to deal with shipping
- You might not have a local store that buys Star Wars action figures
- Tend to pay less than other options
Examples include Toy Safari in Alameda, CA and Busby Antiques and Collectibles in Orlando, FL. Many online buyback companies also have brick and mortar stores, including Neat Stuff Collectibles in Middletown, NY; Kokomo Toys in Kokomo, IN; Comics N Toys in River Edge, NJ; Back to the Past in Livonia, MI; and Rogue Toys, which has multiple locations in Las Vegas and Portland, OR.
We can’t list all the brick and mortar stores that buy Star Wars action figures, but you can search Google to find local toy stores, pawn shops, and flea markets.
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Online Star Wars forums and communities
Star Wars-centric forums often include buy/sell threads you can post your action figures on. Keep in mind policies, payments, and fees vary according to forum/community rules; and in many cases, there is no moderation.
- Get more money by selling directly to buyers
- Most do not charge commissions or other fees
- Exposure to a well-targeted audience
- There is no moderation, so there is potential for unresolved disputes
- There is no guarantee of sale (or sales could take a long time)
You can sell your Star Wars action figures on local classifieds websites and apps. Local buyers pay quick cash, but your market is also limited: you might not find any local buyers for your action figures. Classifieds might not be moderated, either, so you need to be careful when selling via such platforms.
- Fast payouts
- No selling fees
- No guarantee of sale (or sales could take a long time)
- Typically, no moderation
- Potential for hassles like no-shows and scams
Star Wars events
Toy trade shows, collectors’ conventions, and other events present opportunities to sell your Star Wars action figures to enthusiastic and knowledgeable buyers. Find them by searching Google for local and regional Star Wars events.
- Direct access to a large pool of potential buyers
- Potential for quick cash sales
- Fun events, if you’re a Star Wars enthusiast
- No guarantee of sale
- Lots of time involved
- Travel expenses
Star Wars action figure selling tips
Get the most out of your selling experience with these tips.
1. Know what Star Wars action figures you have
Research is your friend, and can be the difference between commanding hundreds – or even thousands – of dollars and unwittingly letting them go for far below market value. When you know what you have, you can ensure you’re getting a fair price.
2. Ask for help
If you’re not sure what you have, or you’re struggling to identify whether a given action figure is valuable, don’t be afraid to ask for help. Post on forums and seek advice from local, regional, or state Star Wars collector clubs. They’re not going to do all the work for you, but many members will be happy to point you in the right direction.
Galactic Binder lists links to some clubs; search online for additional clubs in your area.
3. Set your priorities
Set your priorities before you sell, which can help you decide which selling option is best. For example, if you want to make the most money, you’ll need to conduct research, sell directly to collectors, and be willing to wait for the right buyer. If you want a quick and easy sale, you should consider selling to a buyback company – and be prepared to get less than market value. If you need cash today, a local shop might be your best option.
4. Stay safe
Always vet buyers as much as you can, and never send your Star Wars action figures in the mail until you’re paid (unless there are protections in place against non-payment, such as escrow).
If you’re selling offline, take a friend along and meet in a safe, well-lit, busy public area. Do not hand over your action figures until you have the cash.
Never be afraid to take measures to protect yourself, and be wary of any buyer who doesn’t respect your desire to do so.
5. Create an amazing listing
Make your Star Wars action figure listing attractive to buyers with these tips:
- Write a full, detailed description that includes everything you know about your action figure: condition, year manufactured, manufacturer, variants, included accessories, packaging, etc.
- Include photos of your Star Wars action figures; take several shots from multiple angles, and make sure you clearly showcase special features and call attention to any flaws
- Be accurate and fair about the condition of your items to avoid disputes
- Include payment options, shipping fees, and any other policies you have; your goal is to eliminate any surprises that might give would-be buyers cold feet
- Set a fair price. Your research will tell you what the market is currently paying for your action figures. A fair price at market value will attract collectors; if you want a quick sale, consider pricing below market value
- Always respond to questions in a timely manner
Follow this advice and use the resources in this article to enjoy an easy and profitable selling experience, so you can get the most money for your Star Wars action figures at the greatest convenience.
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