I'm sure it comes to no one's surprise that there were a lot of new figma on display at Wonder Festival. But could you really predict just how varied the offerings this time around would be? They really dug out some unexpecte...
You might have noticed last week things got a little bit quiet around these parts. Thanks to the New Year being a much bigger deal in the east than in the west, news coming out of Japan was pretty light. You might even call it nonexistent as Japan basically took all of last week off. Seeing as how this article thrives on covering the greatest news from the previous week that came in under the radar you might see why this installment came up a little starved for news.
What's a writer to do?
I probably could have just taken a week off, but instead I decided to fall back on my one true love: Transformers. I was only four-years-old when the franchise launched in 1984 and I've been a fan non-stop ever since. For 30 years I've been spending money on it, letting it take over my house and my life, sticking with it through the good times and the bad. If that doesn't sound like marriage then I don't know what it sounds like. Well, an obsession, I guess, but that doesn't sound nearly as nice.
Whatever. Welcome to the Tomopop LinkUP Transformers special!
Hello and welcome to the first Tomopop LinkUP of the new year! We're only two days into 2014 and there's already a lot to look forward to in the coming year. Hard to believe, but over at My Figure Collection they've already got over 1,700 figures, models, and similar items listed for this year. That's just insanity! And when the winter events like Wonder Festival start up we're really going to see that number jump. Goes without saying that there'll be no shortage of great things to come.
This week we've got a lot of anime and game figure news to go over along with one good Doctor and a Clone Trooper on a journey!
The Gunpla Builder's World Cup held its finals at Gundam Front Tokyo on December 22 and the contest has named its winners. First place in the Open championship went to Japan's Shunpei Yamauchi and his take on the MG...
The official figma blog updated with a new preview of the upcoming Sae figure from Hidamari Sketch X Honeycomb. The figure itself I'm sure is a fine figure, but I'm still rather disgusted by Max Factory charging ¥4,000 for a single figure with no real accessory to speak of aside from one interchangeable expression and a pair of glasses. I refuse to consider the spare head for Nori an accessory, it should be consider a bonus item.
Once upon a time in the distant days of 2009, similar figma from Lucky Star in summer uniforms not only included extra heads to create additional characters, but the price didn't go up compared to their 2008 winter counterparts, it was a bonus as it should be. Those figma were also only ¥2,500! Seriously, they've gone up ¥1,500 in five years?
All of the Hidamari Sketch figma have fallen well below the standard set by other figma at the same price today. Miku 2.0 is actually ¥100 less and look at all of the stuff she comes with. Rintarou Okabe is a bigger figma with a bunch of little accessories and he's the same price and also coming out this month. The lab coat version of Kurisu Makise is the same and she's ¥200 less than them. All I can think of is that the Hidamari Sketch license must be some expensive for such bare bones figures to be so pricey.
While I'm complaining, now is a good time to talk about the new figma boxes that started at 200 with Miku 2.0. What is with all of that black!? I'm not kidding, what were they thinking? figma have always had such great box art, but now there's this thick black band going entirely around the box. The emphasis is no longer about what's in the box, but rather what number they are as the number is the biggest thing printed on there. To do it once to honor their 200th figma would be one thing, but to keep doing it is a real eyesore.
OK, no more ranting. Happy thoughts, happy thoughts.
Earlier this year Bandai released Golden Darkness (or Yami if you prefer) from To Love-Ru in the S.H.Figuarts line and hasn't wasted too much time in adding a second figure. She'll soon be joined by Momo Belia Deviluke with a figure that's looking really good. I wish she was in her Deviluke outfit since we already get a lot of school girl figures, but I'll take what I can get.
Her sculpting looks great and the choice of faces are perfect. Smiling, blushing, and I guess we'll call the last one "aroused", are a great fit. She also comes with her phone, but her most eye catching accessory has got to be the rather phallic looking bendable plant tentacle. That on its own is sure to become popular with certain figure photographers.
Pre-orders haven't opened yet, but they probably aren't far away. She's priced at ¥4,725 and will be out in March 2014. Now hurry up and announce Nana!
Bandai has done a lot to improve their Figuarts ZERO line in the last couple of years. Back when I reviewed a trio of ZEROs in 2011, they were fairly simple looking figures of dudes in standard poses with the exception of Marco. Fast-forward to 2013, we're getting a lot of ZEROs of characters that normally wouldn't get something larger and, on top of that, they are looking better than their larger counterparts.
Take Figuarts ZERO Enel & Perona. Both have gotten nice-looking, larger-scaled figures from other companies, yet their smaller versions trump their bigger statues in some ways. Hit the jump to see what I'm talking about.
Another Japanese figure show means another crop of figma being put on display by Max Factory. While nothing shown at Miyazawa Model Expo Autumn 2013 was entirely new we are getting an updated look at some figures that we haven't yet seen at this stage.
One of the upcoming figma I hear a lot of people asking about is Guyver. When we last saw him at Wonder Festival 2013 Winter he looked like a nearly complete and colored figure. But the latest look is an unpainted prototype with some different articulation. In reality the original prototype was probably a reworked Bio Fighter Collection figure also from MF. The updated sculpt is very detail-heavy and looks to be using the figma 2.0 body.
Another update goes to Casca from Berserk, shown here for the first time in color. The figure looks exceptional and may be worth getting even if you aren't a big Berserk fan. Indiana Jones is also making his first public appearance which is kinda strange when the figure has already gone up for pre-order.
Other things of note are the new figmaPLUS display sets featuring street and classroom scenes, Space Adventure Cobra's Golden Boy showing off his golden skeleton, and of course you can't talk about figma right now without mentioning Attack on Titan.
Still a lot of stuff left unseen, but I'm sure they're holding the best for the next Wonder Festival 2014 Winter in February.
In the summer of 2012 exclusive Japanese retailers carried a special line of products featuring My Melody and Kuromi crossed-over with Puella Magi Madoka Magica. At the time they promised there could be more if the series was popular enough. As if there was any doubt. It may have taken well over a year, but they're finally making good on that promise.
The latest step forward is a new plushie featuring My Melody in Ultimate Madoka's dress that has appeared on the Lawson website for ¥3,990. This is a medium size plush that duplicates may of the original design's features like wings and ribbons. Only thing missing is Ultimate Madoka's yellow eyes which can be seen on her tag.
What do you think? We've still got three more girls that still need in on this crossover. Which Sanrio characters would you pick to make a contract?
The fine crystal masters at Baccarat are getting set to let loose official One Piece crystal drinking glasses onto the Japanese public. These glasses feature all nine crew members and Ace with a unique coat-of-arms for e...
Who's ready for a bubble bath? Well, maybe not a bath, but this man can bring the bubbles, that's for sure. For all you JoJo's fans out there, we have Caesar Zeppeli in his Part II Hirohiko Araki specified color. He looks pre...
From Yotsubato! other than Yotsuba herself, the most popular character from that manga is Danbo. Danbo, the cute cardboard robot, is now available in a more cuddlier form. Previously, I’ve mostly seen Danbo as Plamos a...