Titans Return photo
Part two in a five year trilogy
As expected we got some major reveals for the ongoing Transformers Generations figure line at New York Comic Con! What wasn't expected is that the title of the follow up to Combiner Wars is not Titan Wars, but rather Titans R...

Masterpiece Transformers photo
But I want them now!
Takara Tomy is wasting no time getting their latest batch of Transformers Masterpiece figures into our hands. It was only a few weeks ago that we first saw Hot Rod and Shockwave on display in unfinished form, but now we've go...

Top sales 9/7 to 9/13 photo
Top sales 9/7 to 9/13

Top selling toys in Japan for week of 9/7 to 9/13

So much new stuff
Sep 28
// Jeremy Emerje Crocker
So this is a rarity, all but one of the items ranking this week is new to the list. The only returning item is that Yo-Kai Watch watch. There's also another rare girl's toy sneaking into the top overall entries. Otherwise the...
Madogatari photo
It's uniform swap day
Shaft animation studio's upcoming Madogatari event mashing together Madoka Magica and the Monogatari Series has given us more to be excited about than just that super cute Shinobu figFIX. Banpresto is getting in on the festiv...

Masterpiece Shockwave photo
Oh, and Hot Rod shown, too
It's happening! It's finally happening! After years of fan demand and false rumors Takara Tomy is making the emotionless Decepticon scientist and occasional leader Shockwave as an upcoming Transformers Masterpiece! At the All...

Madogatari photo
Really the cutest way to go
Animation studio Shaft is celebrating 40 years with a Madogatari event that mashes up Madoka Magica with the Monogatari series. Among the merchandise offerings is a very interesting figFIX figure featuring the donut loving va...

Masterpiece Hot Rod photo
Now in a smaller fun-size
It looks like Hot Rod is getting a second shot in the Transformers Masterpiece line. Magazine scans are showing the unmistakable silhouette of the young Autobot speedster as an upcoming Masterpiece figure. No details yet, but...

Figure Colosseum results photo
Figure Colosseum results

Banpresto announces Figure Colosseum fan picks

Half great, half meh
Sep 20
// Jeremy Emerje Crocker
Just to recap, every year Banpresto holds the Figure Colosseum, a competition where fans pick characters and sculptors are tasked to make figures out of them. There are two sides to the competition: One Piece Modeling Ki...
Top sales 8/31 to 9/6 photo
Top sales 8/31 to 9/6

Top selling toys in Japan for week of 8/31 to 9/6

Waving that Good Smile Company banner
Sep 15
// Jeremy Emerje Crocker
Normally we see the top hobby sales go to Bandai, mainly dominated by Gunpla. Not this week. This time around it's Good Smile Company (with an assist from Phat!) dominating. Bandai is still taking over the overall ranking, bu...
Sword Art Online photo
That's not how you use an umbrella
All things considered, Sword Art Online is pretty light on the fan service. Between the grim situation of the death game in the first act, the desperate rescue against the clock in the second and the dire situations that came...

Starscream Supermode photo
Starscream Supermode

This is Starscream, he only looks like Thundercracker

Another Transformers identity crisis
Sep 11
// Jeremy Emerje Crocker
In the 2014 Transformers Generations line we saw Hasbro take a step away from G1 version of popular characters and throw the Transformers Armada TV series a bone with an Armada Starscream figure. Later that year Takara would ...
Nendoroid Hestia photo
Nendoroid Hestia

Is it wrong to try to pick up Nendoroid Hestia in a dun- er, shop?

No. The answer is no
Sep 10
// Jeremy Emerje Crocker
Is It Wrong to Try to Pick Up Girls in a Dungeon  (shortened to Danmachi in Japanese) might have one of the most misleading titles in recent history. Sure, there are a lot of girls running around in this series, all with...
Transformers Masterpiece photo
Transformers Masterpiece

Transformers Masterpiece Ironhide gets a price and date

Not that much and not that far away
Sep 05
// Jeremy Emerje Crocker
Takara Tomy appears to be in a rush to get their newest announced Transformers Masterpiece figure into our hands. Only announced just over two months ago, we won't be waiting all that long for MP-27 Ironhide. If a somewh...
Transformers survey photo
Transformers survey

Hasbro UK asks what it's like being a Transformers fan in new survey

Less about toys, more about you
Aug 28
// Jeremy Emerje Crocker
Hasbro UK has a posted a rather interesting Transformers survey open to everyone. The survey is simply titled Modern Fan 2015 and takes a different approach in asking questions about the brand. Rather than simply asking ...
Himouto Umaru-chan photo
Himouto Umaru-chan

Up your Umaru count with these blind-boxed trading figures

Get some himoutos of your own
Aug 27
// Tianxiao Ma
If you want to spruce up your dwelling in a totally adorable way with Himouto! Umaru-chan merchandise, now's your chance! Good Smile Company will be releasing a set of eight trading figures in January 2016 featuring four vari...
Parfom Labrys photo
Parfom Labrys

Welcome Parfom Labrys to the arena

This is one steely class president
Aug 27
// Tianxiao Ma
You know what's awesome? The Persona series. Underneath the whackiness of talking teddy bears and robot warrior maidens lie some wonderful, memorable characters. Labrys here made her debut in Persona 4 Arena, being an older g...
Max Factory Hestia photo
Max Factory Hestia

Max Factory's Hestia is looking pretty bouncy

Now up for pre-order
Aug 27
// Tianxiao Ma
I'm sure DanMachi's Hestia is a character in her own right, but the general anime-aware public might know her more for her peculiar fashion sense. Indeed Max Factory's 1/7-scale PVC rendition goes all in on the boob string. I...
Nendoroid Sanya photo
Nendoroid Sanya

Nendoroid Sanya is ready for the night sky

This Nendo is no ghost
Aug 27
// Tianxiao Ma
Strike Witches fans can finally get their hands on a Nendoroid version of the nocturnal witch Sanya V. Litvyak! With Strike Witches 2 having aired a pretty long time ago and the Operation Victory Arrow OVAs already wrapped up...
Top sales 8/10 to 8/16 photo
Top sales 8/10 to 8/16

Top selling toys in Japan for week of 8/10 to 8/16

And we're back!
Aug 25
// Jeremy Emerje Crocker
So took a break from doing their top sales lists for a few weeks, but it looks like, at least for now, they're back! There have been a lot of summer releases since the last period posted ending July 19, so there mus...
Red Bumblebee photo
Red Bumblebee

Not Cliffjumper, but red Bumblebee next Transformers Masterpiece

So close yet so far away
Aug 21
// Jeremy Emerje Crocker
Looks like we'll have to keep waiting for that elusive Masterpiece Cliffjumper figure. To tide us over (perhaps forever?) we're getting a red Bumblebee for now. MP21R Bumblebee Red Mode is inspired by the very early days...
Figure Colosseum photo
Figure Colosseum

Banpresto opens character voting for latest Figure Colosseum

Votes open on OP and DBZ characters
Aug 18
// Jeremy Emerje Crocker
For the past several years Banpresto has hosted the Figure Colosseum and this year is no different. The Colosseum is now open with Modeling Tenkaichi Budokai 6 for Dragon Ball Z character voting and Modeling King Summit ...
Monster Musume pillow photo
Monster Musume pillow

Monster Musume Mila 23-foot pillow cover sells out in an hour at Comiket

Whole lot of woman
Aug 18
// Jeremy Emerje Crocker
Sometimes a gamble pays off. When it was announced that the Monster Musume and Tokuma Shoten booth at Comiket this past weekend would offer a life sized 23-foot long hugging pillow cover (yes, just the cover) of series m...
Nendoroid Ooyodo photo
The assistant to the secretary ship!
[ Update: Pre-order info added ] Relaying orders to the fleet, handling communications, giving mission briefings, and occasionally getting glomped by Kongou - these are all part of Ooyodo's everyday life. Doesn't that make he...

Sailor Moon Dolls photo
Sailor Moon Dolls

It's almost time for Sailor Pluto and Luna fashion dolls

Time IS on your side
Aug 17
// Soul Tsukino
The fine folks over at Groove are making your Sailor Moon collection look even better with their Pullip series Sailor Pluto and human Luna dolls. Both dolls are 37 x 20.5 x 11 cm in size and are fully articulated. They c...
Naruto S.H. Figuarts photo
And perhaps the best so far
After three fairly "meh" figures from the Naruto Shippuden S.H. Figuarts series (Naruto, Sasuke, and Kakashi) they appear to have finally hit their mark. The fourth figure in the series, the Fourth Hokage, Minato Namikaze, ha...

Tomopop Review: Nendoroid Mako Fight Club Spec Two Star Goku Uniform Ver.

Aug 12 // Martin Siggers
Figure Name: Nendoroid Mako Mankanshoku Fight Club Spec Two Star Goku Uniform Ver.Figure Maker: Good Smile CompanyRetail Price: ¥4,167Available at: N/A Packaging wise, Mako is very much just another Nendoroid, even keeping the distinctive black and yellow aesthetic that all of the Kill la Kill Nendoroids. On the one hand I kind of like it that GSC doesn't make a big song and dance out of the exclusive variants - they even retain a standard number in the lineup. On the other, a little something to indicate that this Mako is a little special would be nice. Perhaps just a little flash in the corner? Regardless, this is a Nendoroid box, which means it's sturdy, smart and informative without being particularly interesting or spectacular. Out of the box, Mako is immediately striking, largely due to that distinctive overcoat. It not only provides a really nice contrast to the blue and white of her uniform, but gives the figure a lot more width than a standard Nendoroid. Combined with the big chunky hat, the net effect is of a figure which feels much bigger than is standard for the line, even though that's not actually the case. Looking from behind gives us a few more details of the coat/cape. You can see that it's hinged at the shoulder blades, a very welcome touch as it allows the coat to fit around Mako's shoulders much more easily than a single piece of plastic would. There's also jointing on the arms of the coat at the shoulders and elbows, and the overall result is a surprisingly poseable accessory. There's no clip or peg to fix the coat to Mako, it simply slips over the shoulders and is held in place by the head. However, Mako's stand does include an extra long extension peg which fits straight through the coat and into her back, and this helps hold the coat more firmly in place as a consequence.  As it is in the show, Mako's coat is lined with golden weapons, all reproduced here in loving detail. Note that they aren't removable, but are instead moulded into the surface. Nonetheless, it's a bravura touch which helps lift the overally impression of the cape as well as reinforcing GSC's attention to detail. Mako comes with quite a few different accessories, the first of which are the iconic folded arms used in many, many Studio Gainax productions, and clearly inherited by Kill la Kill's production house Trigger (which is largely made up of ex-Gainax employees). It's also worth pointing out at this stage that Mako's hat doesn't pin to her head, but instead simply sits on top like a real hat would. This means that not only can you cock it at a jaunty angle as I've done here, but that it'll fit any Nendoroid with a relatively smooth head. It wouldn't be much of a fight club without weapons, and to that end Mako comes with both a nasty looking spiked bat and her self-promoting knuckle duster. The bat fits smoothly into an alternative hand part while the knuckle duster just clips on over the existing fist part. Again, some terrific fine detail work by the sculptors over at GSC. Including the piece of grass Mako chews on (in iconic bancho style) is a nice touch, but I wish they'd moulded it as a permanent part of this face. As it is it's a tiny plug-in part and given that the grass strand is made of soft, bendy plastic, it can be incredibly frustrating to fit.  Throwing up the cutesy V signs might seem a little out of place for this figure, but it looks rather good regardless, courtesy of a pair of lower arm replacement parts. Mako's second included face is this sad face, which pairs up wonderfully with the unique 'huge gloopy tears' accessory. That's what I call it and I'm sticking to it. The tear part actually snaps onto the lower part of the face and round the neck peg, making it surprisingly secure. It's so precisely moulded to this face though that I'm uncertain if it'd work on any other Nendoroid. You get not one but two tear-related accessories with Mako, the other being this enormous fountain of tears designed to recreate the goofiness of an animated breakdown. I'm much more ambivalent on this one - it's a great idea and a pretty funny one-time visual gag, but it's big and fiddly and pretty much a one-joke item. I will note that GSC were smart enough to make the tears high enough to line up with Mako's eyes when she's on her stand. Naturally, if you own 'regular' Nendoroid Mako there's an awful lot of fun to be had swapping parts and expressions between the two. Fight Club Mako even has the small unique piece of moulding in her hairpiece that allows the sleep bubble from regular Mako to be attached, so it certainly seems this is a case of straight mould reuse. Overall, I'd say Nendoroid Mako is pretty much the platonic ideal of what a WonFes exclusive should be. She's definitely not essential by any means, especially considering a cheaper, more readily available version of Mako is out there with arguably superior acessories. But she is a lovely little extra for those who love the series, and a great treat for those who do go that extra mile to get hold of her. Keep your eyes on those convention booths! With many thanks to Good Smile Europe's Maritan, who was hugely helpful in getting hold of Mako for review.
Fight Club Mako photo
Packing a Punch
In the past few years, Good Smile Company has generally become much better about the way it does Wonder Festival exclusive figures. They're now available from the GSC website as well as cons around the world, and the company ...

Premium Digimon photo
Premium Digimon

Premium Bandai gives you the tools to lead the Digidestined

Be the next goggle-head
Aug 05
// Jeremy Emerje Crocker
Digimon is 15 years old and Premium Bandai knows how to celebrate! They could just do a bunch of figures and models and call it a day, but that wouldn't be enough. Instead they're doing a bunch of figures, a model, a cool Dig...

Wonder Festival 2015 Summer: Anime Garage Kits (part 4)

See you later, Space Samurai!
Aug 02
// Chris Seto
We're just about ready to wrap up the garage kit coverage for this years summer Wonder Festival and for our penultimate gallery, we're taking a look at the last few anime garage kits from the dealer floor. There's an appearan...
Top sales 7/13 to 7/19 photo
Top sales 7/13 to 7/19

Top selling toys in Japan for week of 7/13 to 7/19

A so-called "girl's toy" makes the ranks
Jul 30
// Jeremy Emerje Crocker
I remember a time when toys were toys; not trading cards and professional drones. Times have really changed... Overall (→)Yo-Kai Watch Youkai Medal Busters Vol.1 (Bandai) (New) Shuriken Sentai Ninninger D...
WonFes Alphamax photo
WonFes Alphamax

[NSFW] Wonder Festival 2015 Summer: Alphamax/Skytube

Bringing the sexy to WonFes
Jul 29
// Tianxiao Ma
Alphamax (especially with their Skytube brand) tends to be on the racier side of figure manufacturers. They also seem to really like Tony Taka, which can make identifying these figures a chore... Anyway, they brought some rea...

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