WWF LJN Wrestling Superstars

WWF LJN Figures Guide

The Greatest Toys Of 80's

If you love wrestling and 80s nostalgia, WWF LJN figures are a must-have for your toy collection. If you grew up watching WWF in the 80s, they’ll take you back in time. If you didn’t, they’ll make it easy for you to imagine what it was like to be a wrestling fan back in those days.

Many of these figures are now worth hundreds of dollars. Some of the rarer WWF wrestler figures from that time period can command a price of thousands.

In this LJN wrestling figures price guide, we’ll introduce you to some of the most coveted toys in the LJN WWF line. But first, let’s go over the basics for those not all that familiar with WWF LJN figures.

WWF LJN History

The WWF LJN figures were sold as “Wrestling Superstars”. They were manufactured by LJN between the years of 1984 and 1989.

Don’t know the LJN name?

The company existed from 1970 until 1995. The WWF LJN figures are among their most iconic products, but they also were well-known for licensed toys associated with films like Back to the Future and E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial.

LJN’s woes began in 1987, and involved a faulty toy gun. MCA Inc., which owned LJN, lost so much money that they sold the company in 1990. Five years later, LJN dissolved.

This history is important to be aware of, because it explains why LJN’s toy division closed in 1989.

That spelled an end to the beloved WWF figures.

It also explains why the final six figures were not distributed by LJN, but rather by Grand Toys of Canada.

Those six figures, called “black card” figures, are especially rare and highly desirable.

Along with those six, Grand Toys of Canada re-released some older WWF figures, again with the black cards.

Black Card Series 6 Figures

These too, are highly desirable. Indeed, a black card reissue of a figure may cost more than the original issue of that same figure.

Here is the entire Series 6/black card line-up:

Series 6 New Figures

  • Andre the Giant black single strap singlet
  • Big Boss Man with nightstick
  • Haku
  • Rick Rude
  • The Ultimate Warrior
  • Warlord

Series 6 Reissued Figures

  • Hulk Hogan with title belt (white or red shirt)
  • Big John Studd
  • Brutus “The Barber” Beefcake
  • Bam Bam Bigelow
  • Honky Tonk Man with guitar
  • Jake “The Snake” Roberts with snake Damien
  • Demolition Ax
  • Randy “Macho Man” Savage
  • Miss Elizabeth (gold or purple skirt)
  • Bret “Hitman” Hart
  • Ted DiBiase
  • Hacksaw Jim Duggan with 2×4
  • Adrian Adonis

As you can see, some figures have multiple variants. Hulk Hogan, for example, might come with a white or red shirt. Collectors love these happy accidents .

What Made the WWF LJN Figures So Popular?

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WWF LJN figures were distinctive for their time. The trend in the 80s was for action figures to be small and well-articulated with numerous accessories.

But WWF LJN figures bucked these trends. They were large (around 8”), made of rubber, rarely came with accessories, and were not articulated.

What was the special appeal of WWF LJN figures at the time?

  • For one thing, they are faithful representations of their real-life counterparts. A wrestling fan can tell at a glance who a figure represents.
  • The larger size of the toys makes them easy to connect to and play with. The fact that they are stiff doesn’t stop them from being ridiculously fun.
  • Even though these toys did not come with a lot in the way of accessories, they did include file cards and posters.

One major difference between collecting LJN WWF figures versus many other collectible toys is that their original buyers were not prone to leaving them in the packaging.

As a result, light to moderate wear should be expected in many cases, and may not have as drastic an impact on desirability as it would if you were collecting other types of toys.

But that does mean that if you can find WWF LJN figures without any wear, they may be worth more.

Additionally, if the original packaging is intact, that too can raise their value, and in a massive way.

The same figure that costs, say, $300-$500 without the packaging, can go for as much as $3,000-$7,000 with the packaging.

What Are Some of the Most Sought-After WWF LJN Figures?

The elusive mail order only Sgt. Slaughter Figure

Now that you are familiar with the LJN toy company and the background of the WWF figures, we can introduce some of the most valuable and coveted wrestlers.

The Black Series Figures

First, let’s go over the last six LJN WWF figures that were released. These are the black card figures that were not reissues.

Ultimate Warrior

The Ultimate Warrior is one of the Series 6 figures that were produced at the end of the LJN WWF series and distributed by Grand Toys of Canada.

Representing James Brian “Jim” Hellwig, this black card 1989 figure can easily sell for several hundred dollars. In near mint condition, the cost could exceed $700—and that is without the packaging intact. If you do find one of these figures with intact packaging, the price can range into the thousands.

The Warlord

Sporting his distinctive face paint, The Warlord is another of the final six figures in the LJN WWF line, representing Terry Scott Szopinski.

Pricing for The Warlord is similar to that of the other black card figures we have shared. Without the packaging, you can expect to pay a few hundred dollars. With the packaging intact, the cost for The Warlord can easily range into the thousands of dollars.

As of the time of this writing, between $3,000 and $5,000 seems to be typical for black card WWF LJN figures in their original packaging.

Big Boss Man

Also among the final six black card figures is Big Boss Man, a.k.a. Ray Washington Traylor Jr..

Traylor worked as a correctional officer before he became a WWF wrestler, thus his “Big Boss Man” character. He was famous for restraining his opponents after he defeated them and using a nightstick to beat them.

For this reason, his 1989 LJN black card figure has him outfitted as a correctional officer. It is one of the few LJN WWF toys that comes with an accessory, in this case the infamous nightstick.  

If the figure is sold with the nightstick, it will cost more than if the nightstick is missing. That being said, if you purchase a figure without a nightstick, it may be a good deal, because you can buy the nightstick separately in some cases. The added cost of the separate nightstick may come out to less than the amount you saved by purchasing a figure with the nightstick missing.

Of course, as always, the highest price is commanded by the Big Boss Man figure that comes with the full intact packaging.

Once again, it can mean the difference between paying $200-$600 and paying $3,000+.

Andre the Giant

The next black card WWF LJN toy to be on the lookout for is André René Roussimoff, better known as André the Giant.

André the Giant’s name referred to his height, which was more than seven feet. Due to his distinctive size, he was able to break into acting in television and film alongside his wrestling career. Appearances included Conan the Destroyer, The Princess Bride and The Six Million Dollar Man, among others.

There have been a number of figures in the WWF LJN line of André. He showed up in Series 1, Series 2 and Series 6. It is, of course, the black card Series 6 figure that you want if you are aiming for the version with the highest value.

This figure appears to be particularly rare, with the others being much easier to come by. At the time of this writing, I see one priced at $6,000.

Ravishing Rick Rude

Richard Erwin Rood, or “Ravishing” Rick Rude won many championships before going on to manage other wrestlers. He also is known for being a cofounder of the D-Generation X stable.

As of the time of this writing, pricing seems to be just a tad lower for Rick Rude than it is for many other figures in this list, despite the fact that he is another black card figure among the final six. Nevertheless, you can still expect to pay up to several hundred dollars for Rude without the packaging, or up to several thousand dollars with the packaging intact.

Haku

Tonga ‘Uli’uli Fifita, better known as “Haku,” became famous not just for his WWF appearances, but also for his appearances in World Championship Wrestling (WCW) and New Japan Pro-Wrestling (NJPW).

This is another figure that seems pretty hard to come across in the original packaging. At the time that I am writing this, I am actually not seeing any available. So, you could expect to pay a pretty penny for Haku still in the box.

Other LJN Black Card Figures

Here are some examples of figures that were re-released with black cards that can also be worth a great deal.

Hulk Hogan

Another of the most valuable figures is Hulk Hogan (Terry Eugene Bollea). But keep in mind that the 1989 version of Hulk Hogan was a reissue.

That earlier versions are not nearly as valuable as the black card version that came out later. That much rarer item can cost thousands of dollars, especially if the card is intact.

Jake The Snake

Aurelian Smith Jr., called Jake “The Snake” Roberts, is another highly coveted LJN figure that had a black card re-release. His iconic move was the DDT finishing maneuver, which WWE itself recognized as the “coolest” of all time. He was also famous for bringing live snakes to matches, which were trained to wrap around the necks of his opponents and pretend to choke them.

The original Jake the Snake figure that LJN released was part of Series 4. The snake Damien was included, and Jake wore matte or glossy tights.

Actually, even this original version of Jake the Snake can fetch a hefty price if the packaging is intact. I have seen it going for more than $2,000.

But it should be noted that there seems to be some significant price variation with this version of the figure.

As of the time of this writing, I also see a Jake the Snake figure in the original packaging listed for only $700. While the figure has a small dent, the package is also signed, so one would think that would more than make up for the dent.

It just goes to show that if you shop around, you can find some pretty amazing deals. That would be an incredible piece to include in any collection, even with the imperfection!

The Series 6 black card reissue is, of course, more valuable than the Series 4 version. This version of Jake the Snake also came with Damien the snake. It seems pretty hard to come by with the original packaging. In fact, right now, I am not finding it at all. I expect that the price tag could be pretty hefty if you do find one.

Out of the box, Jake the Snake is worth significantly more if Damien is included (it seems that Damien has gone missing with a lot of Jake the Snake figures).

The Hart Foundation  

The Hart Foundation referred to a tag team of members of the Hart dynasty as well as their friends. This incarnation was followed by others over the years such as The New Foundation, The Hart Family, Hart Foundation 2.0, etc.

The Hart Foundation set includes both Bret “Hitman” Hart and Jim “The Anvil” Neidhart. If you find The Hart Foundation in the original packaging, both figures will be included together.

It seems that the set with the packaging intact is hard to find. But you can buy both figures together out of their packaging for around $200-$300.

For either figure alone, you will usually pay around $100-$200, so the cost to collect each individually will probably add up similarly to what you would pay for both as a set.

Both Jimmy Hart and Jim Neidhart were released separately as well, however. Jimmy Hart was part of Series 3. Some versions of him included hearts on the megaphone, while others did not.

Series 4 included a single release of Jim Neidhart, who may be wearing purple or pink tights.

The British Bulldogs

Together, cousins Davey Boy Smith and Tom Billington “Dynamite Kid” formed the tag team known as The British Bulldogs. The tag team was active as early as1983, and lasted until 1990.

The British Bulldogs LJN set includes figures of both Davey Boy Smith and Dynamite Kid.

As with The Hart Foundation, you will most commonly find the figures out of their original packaging. Together, they should run you around $200-$300.

If you find the tag team in their original packaging, the price may rise to $900 or more.

As a single, Davey Boy Smith also was released as part of Series 3 of the LJN action figure line.

Dynamite Kid also released as a single as part of Series 3.

But Dynamite Kid was better known in Japan than he was in the US, and for that reason, Davey Boy Smith as a single figure was produced with a larger run than Dynamite Kid, as LJN figured that demand for Dynamite Kid would be lower among customers in their principle target market.

Good luck finding this one, search here if you wish

For that reason, it is harder to find the Series 3 standalone Dynamite Kid figure than the Series 3 standalone Davey Boy Smith figure.

Nevertheless, prices for either tend to be quite reasonable. You probably can pick each individual figure up for $50 or less.

WWF LJN Prototypes

Some of the most valuable WWF LJN figures you will encounter are prototypes that never went to market.

In most cases, these do not even take the form of completed figures. Usually, they are unpainted.

For example, at the time I am writing this, there is an LJN WWF Hulk Hogan Prototype Production Cast Mold Figure standing 16” for sale.

According to the seller, they received the prototype from a former LJN employee.

Unlike the many static figures that LJN produced, this one was poseable. The head is turnable, and the arms can be raised or lowered.  

At the time that I am writing this, the cost listed for this item is $49,999.99.

Indeed, the vast majority of LJN WWF and WWE prototype figures are going to cost you thousands of dollars. That being said, the majority seem to come in at under $10,000. So the $50,000 Hulk Hogan prototype is one of the most valuable out there by far.

Are there any WWF LJN prototype figures you can purchase for less? Yes. Occasionally, you will stumble across an opportunity.

As an example, right now I see a WWF LJN thumb wrestler prototype The Iron Sheik figure listed for just $399.99.

There were just 12 figures in the Thumb Wrestler line, but the majority of them were common enough that they won’t cost you much.

While the prototype figure of The Iron Sheik could cost you $400, for instance, you can get the regular completed figure that went into full production for under $15.

But a couple of the figures received smaller runs than the rest, namely King Kong Bundy and Jake Roberts.

As a result, either of these Thumb Wrestler WWF figures can command costs in excess of $500.

LJN Errors

One more category of valuable LJN figures is those which were produced with manufacturing errors.

While I am writing this, I can give the example of a 1984 figure of Andre the Giant that I see going for almost $700.

The error in this case does not involve the figure itself, but rather the packaging, which is intact.

The back of the package states that the figure is Hulk Hogan, rather than Andre the Giant.

This figure can be pretty expensive even with no imperfections, but with the error on the packaging, it can cost several hundred dollars more than it would otherwise.

Where to Collect & Buy WWF LJN Figures?

Now you know all about WWF LJN figures, and you have had a chance to discover some of the most desirable wrestlers you can collect.

These toys were a blast to play with back in the 80s, and they are a lot of fun to collect today.

You also have an idea for what type of pricing is typical for some of the rarer LJN WWF toys.

Where can you find WWF LJN figures to purchase? Follow any of the links in this article to check out available figures at competitive prices.

Check what is on the collector’s market frequently, because sellers are posting new listings for WWF LJN figures all the time.