I build a lot of out-of-box (OOB) models and enter them in contests in that category. After watching and listening to how several kits are being released, I have a few questions about a new trend.
Many manufacturers are adding aftermarket parts unique for that kit and not available separately for sale (or parts that have been traditionally considered aftermarket like photo etch and resin parts). On this my understanding is that if it's in the box when you open it, then it's fair to enter in the OOB category.
My question is this: if the kit is a reissue and contains extra parts that were released separately for the kit in it's first issue, should it now qualify as OOB. An example would by the Japanese Type 90 MBT from Tamiya, which now includes a discontinued autoloader set, ammo, and figures that were originally released aftermarket.
How about the new Dragon super models that have aftermarket kits in the box while they are currently for sale separately by Dragon? An example of this is the Sd.Kfz. 251/22 Ausf. D by Dragon, which has tracks, uniforms, and ammo that can also be bought separately from Dragon at this time.
And finally, one of the qualifications for competing OOB is to include the instruction sheet. Sorry to revisit it again (but it is what started me thinking about this!), but what about a kit whose integral instructions show assembly steps for aftermarket parts as part of the necessary steps in building the kit? An example of this would be the Leclerc MBT Series 2 from Tamiya.
I'm thinking the OOB category is going to get very complicated in the next few years, and the simplest solution will be the first one: what's in the box when you open it is all that can count for OOB qualifications. I'm also seeing the points of debate here.
Waxing philosophically on a hobby...