The incredibly rare Voodoo Vince doll. These have sold for millions of dollars on eBay.
The most common question I get via the Beep Industries website (next to "Are you guys dead?") is from people who want to know how they can buy, beg, borrow or steal a bona fide Voodoo Vince doll. We would have dearly loved to see vast heaps of shoddy Vince merchandise, dolls included, but that was not to be.
A Vince doll was made (above), but it was mostly sent to members of the gaming press. The crew at Beep and some of the Microsoft people snapped up the rest. It couldn't have been more than 100 or so dolls, total. I managed to get three. One is on the shelf in my office. Another is being kept in its wrapper for my kid when he's old enough to really enjoy long, pointy pins.
Speaking of which, one sad aspect of the promotional dolls is that they didn't include Vince's pins due to the usual hand-wringing and liability concerns. Vince without his pins is, well, just a doll. The pins you see on my doll were made by my good friend Patrick Hoynes. He melted authentic Mardi Gras beads onto antique hat pins, creating pins as lovely as they are dangerous. That earned Pat the third doll from my small supply.
It's sad. Given the lukewarm reception Vince had in some quarters, those dolls would have been better off in the hands of eager Vince fans. Maxim magazine mailed theirs as a gimmick to a random recipient. I stongly encourage indifferent members of the gaming press to put theirs up for sale on eBay. Contrary to my caption above, you will only make a few bucks but it would help to right a great wrong and restore balance to the gaming nerd cosmos.
This lack of dolls hasn't dampened the spirits of determined Voodoo Vince fans. Since no Vince merchandise exists, they've made their own. Over the last few years I have received some great pictures (and one actual doll) from fans who have made t-shirts, artwork and quite a few home-made Vince dolls. No mass produced chotchkey will ever match these for personality, warmth and all-around coolness.
One lucky Vince fan received this statue for her birthday from her very talented son:
I have to smile every time I look at these. When I think about the hours these must have taken to create, I'm simply amazed. This proves that an idea can live on in the hearts of gamers long after the machines that play them have been converted to goldfish bowl case mods - with or without the help of marketing.
This final image by a grade schooler is better than any sign-off I can think of.