Haha, figures that are planned and announced, but take years to get started in production? That sounds familiar *coughHATcough*
But that is the point - a set of figures DOES take years to produce.
We get shown the masters and a lot of people assume they'll be in the shops the week later.
The process of sending the masters off, making the intermediates, making, fitting and testing the mould, doing the production run, and finally printing packing and despatching the orders all takes time.
Most metal figure makers can do this in weeks because they are producing in relatively small runs, compared to plastic, and their distribution issues are different.
I think the difference between Hat and a lot of figure makers is that Hat has always been upfront about what is coming down the road and doesn't suddenly produce a set, apparently out of nowhere.