When I refer to scalpers, I'm not talking of American Indian trophy hunters. I speak of the evil bastards that scour the toy aisles of America looking for rare toys to by in vast quantity only to put them on Ebay at a greatly marked up price. I am a toy collector. I buy them, open them and display the items in my collection. I have never purchased rare items for resale, or at least not in a great quantity. I bought 2 GI Joe exclusive figures at a convention. One to keep and one to sell. I sold one and made a good amount off it so I sold the other to pay some bills.
These scalping bastards would have bought EVERY figure at the convention and sold them all on Ebay. Scalpers make it difficult for the average collector to complete their collection. Whether it be GI Joe, Hot Wheels or Barbie. If there is a store exclusive, variant, or rare one figure per case (also called Chase figures) the scalper will hunt them down, buy them all and sell at mark up. So instead of paying retail cost, a collector must go and pay the higher prices on the 2ndary market.
It doesn't even have to be an exclusive or chase figure, if the figure or toy is of a popular character, the scalper will scoop them up and head the the register.
Yeah I know it's a free market and they are just toys and what not. It still ticks me off when I'm looking for the new Arch Angel figure to complete my X-Men display and I see a Fat Beard with an armload of the winged X-Man, not to mention all the Havoc's, Kitty Pride's and Juggernauts in the store headed for the checkout. (all he figures mentions are rare. I've found a few but still can't locate the Arch Angel variant or Havoc)
It's frustrating. Eventually I'll find what I'm looking for. Luckily I have friends around that help me in my searches and I in theirs.