All Your Monies: May 13th

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Hello, and welcome to All Your Monies, where The Glorio Blog’s resident toy and figure collecting crew (and Aquagaze) will run down the last week’s new preorders, turning a loving or scathing eye over what’s been put out for you to spend your hard earned cash on. This week, in the name of the moon, we will punish your wallet!

S.H. Figuarts Sailor Moon (Sailor Moon)
Bandai, September, 3080JPY

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Zigg: I don’t feel Figuarts are particularly suited to anime style characters but this is a solid release, albeit perhaps a little on the basic side. Brief sidenote – Amiami hasn’t listed her at all on the English site and have confirmed they have no intentions to, so we’ve provided a link to the Japanese site instead. Grab your tinfoil hats folk!

Jel: I’ve never been into Sailor Moon but I can recognize and appreciate this is a pretty big release. She looks about standard quality for a Figuarts, which is to say slightly clunkier than a figma. Luna as an accessory is a nice (and probably mandatory) touch, but let’s be honest, this would have sold a ton no matter what it came with.

Aquagaze: While I am very glad to see a new Sailor Moon figure, I am having a hard time recommending this one. The joints are just too glaringly obvious, especially on and around the torso, making Usagi look almost robotic. The skirt looks cheaply crafted and the overall finish does not look up to Bandai’s standards. I understand that the classic Sailor Moon eyes are pretty hard to recreate on a figure, but the overall face just looks eerily uncanny here. Certainly, it is a verly low prize, but if they can make their Pokémon and Kamen Riders look so great at the same prize, why not Sailor Moon?

Timmy: Looks like Bandai has a new cash cow as people clamor hand over fist trying to get those extra first print face plates. I do admit those as well as her other accessories are pretty nice and I did almost did get myself one despite not watching the show. If you are a SM fan and don’t feel like or can’t afford the eventual scale figures that are bound to appear, Moon here is probably worth it. Just be aware that the others are already on their way with Mars being spotted already. Gotta catch them all you know.

Lifesong: This should please Sailor Moon fans. With a new anime around the corner I expect to see more like this in the near future.

D-ARTS Venusaur (Pokemon)
Bandai, August, 2790JPY

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Zigg: This looks fantastic but I feel that Venusaur is probably the least suited of the three starters to a posable figure, and I don’t think this thing will be doing many action scenes, despite the fact the included vine whip tentacles look great. Think of it as a cool looking static and all is well.

Jel: With the starter trinity complete, I’m ranking Venusaur in between the other two. His (hers? is there anyway to tell?) awkward poseable joints are masked better than Charizard, but not even the longest vine whip accessory can be as cool as Blastoise’s water cannons. It’s a pretty cool rendition overall though, and I’ll bet all three together will look great on display.

Aquagaze: There is really very little to say about Bandai’s Pokémon D-ARTS series. They are gorgeous, dynamic, dirt cheap and of high quality. Unlike Charizard’s, Venesaur’s joints hardly stand out due to his chubby, tiny limbs and the added Vine Whips make for a neat addition. That Charizard and Blastoise on your shelf are waiting for a friend.

Timmy: Eh, I’ll admit these are kind of cool but I am nowhere near enough of a pokemon fan to consider getting one for myself.

Lifesong: This was my starter Pokemon back when I first played the original game and I tempted to pick it up just for that bit of nostalgia.

Nendoroid Sheryl Nome (Macross Frontier)
Good Smile Company, September, 2790JPY

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Zigg: Yo, boobs on Nendoroids are still super weird. Otherwise though this is a lovely looking thing, great hair, cool colours and a refreshing retro vibe. I cheer for every Nendo which isn’t a schoolgirl at this point.

Jel: As a Macross fan and increasingly hopeless nendoroid addict, I feel obligated to buy this. I’m having trouble getting over the nendoroid with boobs thing though. I’m assuming Ranka will make a better transition to nendo form, but then I feel like if I buy one I have to buy the other. Maybe I’ll just skip both and save my money for the mysterious Macross heroines petit set that will no doubt be some kind of exclusive or pack-in or something.

Aquagaze: Giving a nendoroid cleavage and some rather noticeable lines where the arms and legs come off is an overall rather ill-advised decision, but my main gripe with this version of Sheryl lies with the fact that I simply do not recognize it as Sheryl. Sheryl has always had this wierd hair colour that lies somewhere between blonder and pink, and this nendo leans a bit too heavy towards the latter. Aside from that, her eyes also lack this sultry, half-open look that make the character noteworthy in the first place. Better luck next time.

Timmy: Sheryl is nice enough, and that stage is a nice touch, but the whole low top with cleavage thing just feels a bit awkward on a Nendoroid.

Lifesong: Sexy nendroids are scary.

Kazuno (Horizon in the Middle of Nowhere)
Alter, September, 9550JPY

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Zigg: I can’t get over how weird the pose is on this. There’s seems to be no really good angle to view it from and that’s a pretty major problem for a display static. It’s a little underwhelming detail wise too – I can’t put my finger on it but it doesn’t really seem to have that extra sheen Alter’s stuff normally has. Pretty disappointing.

Jel: This figure makes about as much sense as Horizon’s plot, but it does look pretty cool. The character herself isn’t too wild but she also comes with some massive black… blade things??? Whatever they are, that and the broken concrete base are interesting additions. I kind of like the futuristic, magic maid design as well, maybe Lifesong can enlighten us on what that’s all about.

Aquagaze: I literally spent the last five minutes trying to figure out how exactly that pose works. Humans are weird. It is a neat attempt to make Kanzuo stand out a bit, and that is definitely necessary. The sober black and white is confusing because her design lacks the minimalism that makes such a colouring stand out, and her heritage shows in Horizon‘s already infamous obsession with anatomy-defying chests being reflected here as well. It is not good. It is not bad. It is merely nothing.

Timmy: Kanzuo has a pretty interesting pose. A bit twisted, but not unrealistically so, as she seems to be in the middle of turning around while summoning a pair of black arrows of doom on some hapless foe. She has a lot of great details, a great sense of motion, and a really nice base. Alter did a nice job and I have actually considered getting her despite having no idea who she is or exactly what she is doing.

Lifesong: What we have here is the robot maid who caries the soul of Tadakatsu Honda’s late wife. She has some power over gravity and the ability to redirect objects. If you know Accelerator from Index her power is similar to that. If my memory serves correctly her weapons are formed from pavement she pulled up from the street in order to fend off a few mechs. Alter nailed Kazuno’s looks. I hope they will do more figures from the series.

Kirino Kousaka (Oreimo 2)
Alphamax, December, 6790JPY

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Zigg: I…I kind of like this. Normally I’d call a brown palette dull, but here it works in an understated way, offset by Kirino’s lovely hair and that white dress. I dig the socks look, the detailing on the fabric looks great and it’s a distinctive and demure pose. Still not a Kirino fan, but I can’t deny this is a lovely figure.

Jel: *Yaaaaawn* About the only thing this figure has going for it is the dress, which is a pretty nice, unique design I guess. Other than that it’s a barely average sculpt with a barely average paint job and a pose and expression you would never see Kirino make.

Aquagaze: Every time some moron attempts to fool people into believing that Kirino Kousaka is a sweet, cute girl, let alone a character with any redeeming qualities whatsoever, a puppy dies. Figures are supposed to capture the essence of the character, and this one does not exactly yell “horrible abusive deviant”. Au contraire. The harder you try to bash in our skulls with misrepresentations of this (derogatory patriarchial epithet) just to make us love her, the more alienated we will become from that disastrous maelstrom of excrement you call a show, Oreimo. Back to the drawing board for the fifty-thousandth time. And don’t dare come out until you’ve made a Kirino figure that actually acts like her.

Timmy: I actually kind of like this. The dress is nice and interesting, As is the pose and (very non Kirino-like) expression. Price seems a tad high though considering Kirino figures are already pretty over saturated and the fact I have seen figures with similar features priced at 1k less.

Lifesong: Kirino is actually kind of cute here. If I liked her character I would be tempted. This is one the better looking Kirino figures in my opinion.

Samus Aran Zero Suit ver. (Metroid: Other M)
Max Factory, Q4 2012, $99.99 (re-release)

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Zigg: I’m sure it’s a fine figure but my interest in a sexy Zero Suit Samus is somewhere below zero. Ass-kicking robot suit Samus or nothing.

Jel: Zero Suit Samus pushes the bounds of sex appeal that I want on my shelf, but if I were to ever go that route I would probably go here. In fact if it was more in the $60-70 range I’d seriously consider picking up this re-release, but at around $100 I’ll pass.

Aquagaze: This Zero Suit Samus is indeed the one from Metroid: Other M. You can just see the dull eyes, revealing nothing but hollow angst inside. There is nothing wrong with her face in se, but for some reason it still looks… off. Is it because of her hips being way too big that her face looks so tiny? It’s quite the bummer, because everything else here looks amazing, from the sweet finish on the suit to the little metroid added as a bonus. However, does a real Samus fan not want a figure of Samus we know and love best? Speaking of which…

Timmy: Chances are if you loved Max Factory’s Samus you already have her. I thought she was pretty nice but not being a hardcore metroid fan made me pass on her the first time, and while she temps me once more the result will probably be the same. Very nice figure though and Samus definitely puts the “s” in sexy.

Lifesong: I know I won’t earn myself any friends by saying this, but I will anyway… This Samus Zero Suit looks silly to me. She looks a little too much like a pin up girl and not enough like a bounty hunter.

Figma Link/Figma Samus Aran (The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword/Metroid: Other M)
Max Factory, Q4 2012, $49.99 each (re-releases)

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Zigg: Two fine, fine re-releases for figma this week. Of these two, Link is good but some weird facial choices and a slightly flat sculpt let him down a tad. Samus is simply outstanding, as ‘m sure your eyes can tell you. If I didn’t already own these two I’d be all over them.

Jel: My memory of figma link has become fuzzy after seeing the fantastic Real Action Hero version, but if you’re like most people and A. don’t have that much spare cash to throw around and B. missed the initial figma run, here you go! As far as Samus, she falls in that awesome category of figmas where the joints don’t matter. Her only downside is this is technically the Other M design and most Metroid fans would prefer to forget that existed, but other than that she’s another great re-release to pick up.

Aqua: Nice lipstick, Link, but oh my Miyamoto, would you just look at that gorgeous Samus? Slick design, gorgeous metallic finish, joints being an actual part of the design, and a Morph Ball added in for good measure. Nintendo fans are having a field day this week, aren’t they?

Timmy: I can vouch for Link being pretty cool and Samus has all that armor for the joints to blend in to. Both are nice and they are worth the cash if you regretted missing them the first time. Better act fast this time though as the aftermarket is bound to shoot right back up to near the $100 mark.

Lifesong: At $50 a pop I would wait to see if other cheaper options show up before putting in an order for either of these.

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