4:00 PM on 07.05.2013
God is Dead
It's not like we have a shortage of poseable figure lines, but chalk up another one for the board! Previously, the D-Arts line has focused on video game series and, as such, have focused on less human designs for their releases. We've had D-Arts X from the Megaman X series and Izanagi from Persona 4, but while they're humanoid, there are elements to their design which set them apart from the usual human figures seen in the figma line (amongst others).
But with the release of Alisa from God Eater Burst, along with Terry Bogard, the D-Arts line now finds itself in direct competition with the more established lines churning out endless numbers of (usually female) human characters! Does she stand up to her rivals? Only one way to find out...
Let's get it on!
Figure Name: D-Arts Alisa Ilinichina Amiella
Figure Maker: Bandai
Available at: Amazon
First up, let's look at the box. Rather uniquely for D-Arts figures, the box for their figures actually open from the sides, which allows for a larger than usual viewing window which wraps around one of the corners!
The sides provide a few more potential poses for the figure inside. Also, for a touch of authenticity, Alisa has her name printed in Russian on the box; a nod to her heritage from the game.
And, in a bit of a faux pas, the back of the box shows off a pose which is actually impossible to pull off with the items provided (unless you're happy with cutting the tip off the blade accessory). There is a warning at the bottom of the pic but it still seems like an odd oversight. Most poseable figures stick with photos which can be done by the figure.
There's also some basic info on Alisa and God Eater if you understand enough Japanese.
Here she is, easily passing the "can she stand on her own?" test! Her designers definitely took a lot of pointers from other departments in the Bandai offices, especially from the AGP and Composite Ver Ka Haruhi mecha unit series! Like those series, her joints are all rather exposed although, luckily, they don't stand out as much as one would think. Care needs to be taken with the ankles though. The exposed joints mean that the ankles have a much larger range of movement compared to other figure lines and can easily appear as if she's standing on a broken ankle if one isn't careful, with the toes pointing in awkward directions!
Here's, arguably, the stand out part of the package, Alisa's God Eater! Bandai have tried their best to keep with the standard design from the game and keeping with some of the more organic look for some parts. For those who are interested in the game, I'm pretty sure it's the Raging Lore for the cannon, Avenger for the blade and either Brimstone or Oval shield if you want to recreate the God Eater in the game. You can also make the same costume worn by Alisa, but she keeps her hat as a unique point!
Yes, it is rather large and yes, it is to scale! It's also rather heavy, which severely limits the poses you can perform with Alisa, as the support arm for the God Eater isn't exactly flexible itself...
Of course, that doesn't mean that you can't have some fun with posing her!
A quick back shot of Alisa shows that she doesn't have any holes on her body to insert any pegs to connect her to a base. Instead, the arm has a simple claw mechanism to hold her in place when necessary.
Speaking of which, the base comes up as a bit of a disappointment. Those of you who have read the review for the D-Arts Izanagi or even Mewtwo will know that those two had special bases which reflected the series they came from. That little touch doesn't extend to Alisa, who just gets a very basic and standard base. In fact, you can purchase these separately from hobby shops!
In terms of detail on Alisa herself, Bandai have managed to hit the main points of her design, including her logo on her chest, and the God Eater bracelet on her right arm, which prevents all God Eaters from being consumed by the very weapons they wield. The strap which rests on her shoulder is actually loose and not attached to anything other than the skirt. This gives some nice effects when posing, but it can sometimes slip off due to a lack of tension keeping it in one place.
However, it's not all roses in this review. There are some signs of a slightly shoddy paint job in some areas but the most glaring issue is the scratch mark on the right arm. What makes this galling is that it actually affects EVERY poseable figure from Bandai I have purchased. I have three AGP gundam girls, two AGP Infinite Stratos girls and all the composite Ver Ka Haruhi mecha suit releases thus far and every one of the girls show marks in the same place!! You'd think that Bandai would have picked up and done something about this by now! It's clearly an issue in the later parts of manufacturing...
The leg is also severely limited in movement around the hip and knee as well. It's not too much of an issue, but don't expect to get her to perform poses which require flexible legwork.
Overall, it's hard to fault the overall package. Alisa is a pretty good likeness to her video game counterpart, and despite the limitations of her leg joints, she can do a lot. However, the greatest strength of the figure is also its greatest weakness...
The God Eater itself really helps the figure stand out as it's such an awesomely large and hefty weapon. It's also cool to look at to boot, but it also severely limits the poses you can do with it since the very things one may like about it make it impossible to pose without assistance, and the extra arm provided in the packaging simply isn't up to the task...
A one-handed swing pose is pretty much out of the question and the arms aren't able to hold the sword up on their own either. I was able to do a couple of more interesting pose such as getting the D-Arts figure to mimic her big sister.
However, the caveat is that I used up a copious amount of tape at the back to keep the sword in place. And even then, it didn't last long!
It's also a shame that we only get the blade version of the God Eater, but since the transformations in the game are physically impossible (parts appear and grow at a whim), it's understandable. And we all know why we didn't get a gun accessory along with the blade in a single package...
Nevertheless, Alisa should placate fans of the game (or just her), and if you're in the mood for adding a huge sword into your arsenal for poseable figures, the God Eater should fill those needs too! If you're looking for one of the above, then she's definitely worth checking out!
[ Thanks to Bluefin for providing the review sample! ]
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