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MegaHobby Expo photo
Upcoming figures from Alter, MegaHouse
It's late fall so you know what that means: MegaHobby Expo time! I'm always hyped to see what kind of new stuff is coming soon (or in Alter's case, much later). Let this be a reminder for all of you to start saving up! Here's...

MegaHobby Expo 2015 photo
MegaHobby Expo 2015

MegaHobby Expo 2015 Spring: Hobby Japan

For those of you looking for boobs
May 31
// Tianxiao Ma
Hobby Japan often caters to the more salacious crowd, and I'm getting a bit of that from their display at MegaHobby Expo. Unfortunately a lot of these will likely be Hobby Japan exclusives, so actually buying them can be a tr...
Amakuni Bishamon photo
Amakuni Bishamon

Amakuni serves up a stray god for you

Bishamon from the series Noragami
Nov 25
// Tianxiao Ma
If pretty women with giant swords floats your boat, check out Amakuni's Bishamon from the manga/anime series Noragami. She's supposed to be a god of combat - I guess she looks the part? Kind of? This looks to be a Hobby Japan...

Amakuni's new Asuka is a cut above

Aug 25 // Martin Siggers
Amakuni Asuka photo
Evangelion 3.33 heroine a Hobby Japan exclusive
Amakuni have recently carved out a lucrative niche collaborating with Hobby Japan magazine, producing high quality exclusive figures for the publication. That collaboration doesn't look like it's about to stop anytime soon ei...

Hobby Japan Exclusives photo
One imaginary hero, one real one
It seems like only yesterday I was bemoaning the lack of figures of Rikka Takanashi from Chuunibyou demo Koi ga Shitai!...wait, it was! Not content with letting Kotobukiya steal the spotlight, Hobby Japan today put ...

Amakuni Muramasa Sansei photo
Amakuni Muramasa Sansei

Amakuni's Muramasa is lacking in the full metal department

Also lacking in the clothing department
May 22
// Tianxiao Ma
Amakuni is certainly no stranger to women in skimpy outfits, but this is their first figure of Muramasa from Full Metal Daemon: Muramasa. The eponymous character has been made into a figure before by Max Factory wearing ...

Tomopop Review: Amakuni's Marika Kato

Mar 06 // Martin Siggers
Figure Name: Marika KatoFigure Maker: Amakuni/Hobby JapanRetail Price: ¥9,333Available At: N/A The first thing to note about Marika is that if you want to buy can't. Or, at least, not new. The reason for that is that she's one of Amakuni's frequent collaborations with Hobby Japan, and was exclusively available through the pages of the magazine. Those outside of Japan needed a proxy to buy her (I got mine from Big in Japan) so she's a little more expensive and difficult to get hold of than your average figure. With that in mind, expectations are suitably raised. This s a pretty standard box, although it's larger than you'd expect for a 1/8 figure for reason we'll see in a bit. I like the hot pink colour scheme and the big bold lettering at the the top, but it's all a little messy down the bottom, with no less than three different typography sets. The box does have heart shaped side windows, which is a cool little detail. Out of the box, it's hopefully obvious what drew me to Marika in the first place. This is an exciting, dynamic pose with tons of movement and some fantastic detailing. First impressions are positive. Marika's mostly made of lovely soft touch matte plastic, and there are no major defects or paint flaws to report. I will say that there's some use of slightly glossier smooth plastic (on her cloak for example) that feels a little cheaper. This is my first Amakuni figure and I'd say I was very satisfied, but I wouldn't class the company in the elite tier alongside GSC, Alter et al yet. There's a little bit of paint splash here and there and one or two sloppy lines, although I must stress these are the exceptions rather than the rule. One thing that's absolutely inexcusable though is the base. It's just a big disc of shiny, hollow black plastic and it couldn't feel cheaper if it tried. I get that an elaborate base isn't necessary for a standing figure like this, but come on, where's my starfield or ship's wheel or something like that? This is the kind of thing I'd expect to see on a ¥1,500 trading figure. From the side it's easy to see why a bigger box was required. With Marika leaning forward and her cape billowing out behind her this is a pretty 'long' figure, although it's quite narrow since the cape doesn't flare, and she hasn't got much of a skirt. One interesting thing to note is that, unlike most figures, Marika cannot be removed from her base. The foot is permanently attached to the stand part, which is screwed into the base. This is unusual, but it's not like she could stand at all without the base anyway, and hopefully it'll help alleviate potential leaning issues. There's a real nice flutter to Marika's cape, and the burgundy interior adds a much needed splash of colour to what's a very black heavy figure. As I mentioned the cape is pretty swept to one side, which helps with the impression she's mid turn, moving in a specific direction. Note the nice, subtler work with the coat as well. Marika's weapons are not molded into her hands, but are instead separate pieces, probably to save space inside the packaging. They're nicely detailed and slip snugly into her hands. In fact, they might be a little too snug - I had to use quite a lot of force, especially since there's almost no 'give' in the hand parts. You can also see here some great close detailing, like the little ruffles, or the sharp gold trim on the upturned sleeve. One thing I unabashedly love about this figure is the face, which is nigh perfect. Marika's got just the hint of a smile playing about her lips and the big, blue eyes are wonderfully painted and add real verve to the face when framed by her pinkish-orange hair. Big praise for the hat too which is a chunky, reassuringly solid lump of plastic. The big feather on the top looks great and the entire thing is deep enough that it sits on her head squarely without much chance of falling off. There's no special mechanism or parts required for the hat. It simply pops on and off like an actual hat would do, so if you want to pose it at a jaunty angle, that's entirely possible, although probably not the best look for the poor girl. From the front we can see some delightful design touches - note the nice ruffling on the cravat, the skull and bones logo on the scabbard and the way her coat and skirt fall very naturally across the legs. Marika's hair is not as immediately striking as some figures, but it's an important part of her makeup nonetheless. Amakuni have done a great job spreading it out over her back like a mane, and while it may not be the most elaborate 'do we've seen, it avoids becoming just a big lump of plastic. I like the way it's not quite as smooth and uniform as you'd expect - the little fronds sticking out make it more like actual, unruly hair. Overall, I'm extremely satisfied with Marika. That's not to say she's perfect though. While it's good, Amakuni's quality isn't quite up to going toe-to-toe with the biggest names in the business, and that base quite frankly is an embarrassment. Still, it's a figure of so many wonderful touches, full of such vim and vigour, that it's difficult not to smile every time you see her perched on a shelf. And you know what? That's worth more than any treasure. (Except chocolate gold coins, those things rock!)
Amakuni Marika photo
Gun and sword in accord
It's clearly pirate season at Tomopop. We've just seen Tian take on Alphamax's enticing Velvet Batrass, and now I'm here to take a look at another lady pirate, albeit one considerably more covered up. It's Amakuni's version o...

WonFes Winter: Amakuni photo
WonFes Winter: Amakuni

[NSFW] Wonder Festival 2014 Winter: Amakuni

Lots of ladies and an obligatory KanColle figure
Feb 11
// Brian Szabelski
Amakuni brought a little bit new to Wonder Festival 2014 Winter. Sure, they had that lovely Queens Gate Noel Vermillion and there's the obligatory KanColle figure in the form of Shimakaze. The Fairy Tail Erza Scarlet figure l...
Amakuni Belphegor photo
Amakuni Belphegor

[NSFW] Amakuni's Belphegor is just the laziest

A Hobby Japan exclusive Seven Deadly Sins figure
Jan 27
// Tianxiao Ma
Although Belphegor isn't really looking the part, she is the representation of Sloth in Hobby Japan's Seven Deadly Sins brand. We've seen the character design, but now you can check out the painted version in the latest magaz...
Queen's Blade photo
Queen's Blade

[NSFW] Queen's Blade's Tomoe is tied up for the moment

Not exactly an icon of female empowerment
Nov 26
// Tianxiao Ma
The Queen's Whatever series has gone on for much longer than I expected, and it has given us a bounty of exploitative, mildly rape-y figures to enjoy (or not). The latest magazine scans have a few for us to look at. The bulk ...
Amakuni Erza photo
Both swords and clothes optional
A few days back we saw a quick unpainted prototype showing of Hobby Japan's take on Erza Scarlet, a collaboration with Amakuni. Now in very short order we've got both pictures of the fully painted figure and pre-orders up and...

Amakuni's Erza photo
Amakuni's Erza

Unwrap Amakuni's Erza Scarlet prototype

Will this fairy tale come true?
Nov 21
// Martin Siggers
Amakuni and Hobby Japan announced a little while back that they'd be making a figure of the much loved Erza Scarlet from Fairy Tail, but we hadn't had a chance to see anything of the actual product until earlier today, when a...
Hobby Japan Lucifer photo
Hobby Japan Lucifer

[NSFW] It's hot in hell so cool off with this new Lucifer

Looks so much less worksafe in color
Sep 25
// Tianxiao Ma
Speaking of hell, it must be freezing over because there are some swimsuit figures coming out that I actually want. Then again, it's probably not freezing over after all as you can see by the state of Lucifer's dress. The pro...
Pre-order Marika photo
Arrr. Nice booty!
We have followed the production of Amakuni's Marika for a long time; From an unpainted prototype at MegaHobby 2013, A tweet of a painted prototype to a recent magazine scan. For those of you who wanted the pre-order her, the ...

Marika Katou photo
Hobby Japan exclusive set to fill that void in your collection
I don't really get it. Bodacious Space Pirates was a real hit when it aired back in 2012. And yet, despite a plucky cast of female characters (oh, there were some guys there, too), it didn't get a lot of interest on the merch...

WonFes Amakuni photo
WonFes Amakuni

Wonder Festival 2013 Summer: Amakuni

The bodacious pirate and more
Jul 29
// Tianxiao Ma
We knew ahead of time that we'd see Amakuni's Marika Katou (from Mouretsu Pirates) at WonFes. Indeed, Kristina was able to get a few photos of the figure, painted and unpainted. I think she looks terrific - certainly up to pa...
Bodacious Space Pirates photo
And your wallet, because she's exclusive
I was very excited when news came out that Amakuni were making a figure of Bodacious Space Pirates' Marika Katou and my enthusiasm didn't wane when we saw the prototype back at MegaHobby Expo. Now, with Wonder ...

Amakuni's Dark General photo
Amakuni's Dark General

Amakuni's Dark General summoned for pre-order

Arriving in November
Jun 27
// Brian Szabelski
Popping up in Hobby Japan's shop today is Amakuni's Dark General. Based on the character from Shingeki no Bahamut, the November release packs one heck of a hefty sword, a lot of detail, and not a lot of armor. I guess when yo...
Seven Deadly Sins Satan photo
Seven Deadly Sins Satan

Feel the wrath in this Satan gallery

A pair of big, beautiful... eyes
Jun 19
// Tianxiao Ma
We got a glimpse of the sculpted Satan in last month's magazine scans. As it turns out, she also made an appearance at MegaHobby Expo. For whatever reason, photos of her didn't come out until a couple of days ago, but now we ...
Megahobby Expo: Amakuni photo
Megahobby Expo: Amakuni

Megahobby Expo 2013 Spring: Amakuni

If you haven't heard of them before, you'll know about them now
May 26
// Brian Szabelski
Among the many companies to set up booths at Megahobby Expo, the newest might be Amakuni. Tied closely with Hobby Japan, Amakuni has made a few exclusive figures for the hobby magazine so far, but three prototypes were also o...

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