I haven't bought a Figma figure since back in 2009 when I bought figure No. 10, Kanu Unchou. I was impressed as hell with that figure, but the prohibitive price of Japanese import toys stopped me from going full completist with the line. I couldn't even go has-handful-of-cherry-picked-figures with it, they're that expensive.
This one here, No. 133, Samus Aran from the video game Metroid: Other M.
I don't know much about Metroid: Other M, I mean other than what I found out about it on good old Wikipedia.From what I gather, it was a game for the Nintendo Wii. Reviews were mixed, and the game received both one of the best games of 2010 (Wired) and one of the worst (Attack of the Show!). Most of the complaints seem to be about the story though.
I guess it's a good thing I never played it.
The Metroid I remember is the 1987 original for the Nintendo Entertainment System, where you played an 8-bit dude (or so I thought at the time) who shot jelly fish. I didn't finish the damnable game till years later when I discovered some passwords in a gaming mag (hey, not every nerd is a natural gamer, okay?).
Anyway, back to the business at hand.
I got the Figma Samus figure as a pre-order at Wasabi Toys. Sure I probably could have gotten it cheaper at other stores, but I love their easy to use website and their customer service. They only got a partial shipment, though, so I doubt they have any more for sale at the moment.
The box is nice, if old-fashioned.
It's a normal box. I haven't seen one of those in a while. Every American toymaker seems to want to put their toys in some oddly shaped blister card that doesn't stack well at all, and tends to fall of the shelf. Doesn't look as if the Japanese bother with that kind of stuff.
What they do bother with is fantastic product photography. This is the kind of stuff I wish Hasbro would do for their toy lines. Okay, fine, you say that none of their toys have this level of articulation? Well then they get by with set up. If you've seen the photos for both the the catalog inserts of the G.I. Joe: Pursuit of Cobra or the Sigma 6 line, then you know that they can do wonders with dioramas. They can do the same with their Marvel Universe line.
Anyway, the back is plastered with action shots of Samus in... well, action. I'm sure that they explain some of the features of the toy there, too, but I don't read any Japanese, so I can't help you. The sides of the package have bigger close-up portrait shots of the figure. It's a nice box, and if I did have that completist bug for this line, I would have kept all the boxes and displayed them all in a line against a wall or something.
The figure comes with quite an assortment of accessories.
The contents include the figure, which stands roughly 6 inches in height (though it really isn't scaled with any other 6 in./1:10 scale line since Samus in her suit would likely tower over normal people), a Figma figure stand (one of the nicest stands you can find, if rather fragile), a set of 4 alternate left hands posed with different gestures, an alternate weapon cap, 2 translucent beam pieces, a sheet of instructions, and a ball.
If you've ever played a Metroid game, then you know about the Maru Mari, an ability that allows Samus to curl her body into a ball and roll around the floor ('cause, you know, walking is for losers) and into caves. I swear to god, I spend a day trying to figure out how the hell to get past that big ass block to the left of the starting area of the old NES game. I was almost in tears by the time I figured out you needed to get that damnable power-up, then press down so that you could roll under the little hill (and you though you sucked at video games?).
This is that same little ball. It's got a hole in one spot along the mid line where you can plug it into the Figma stand, though you could just as easily just put it on the floor, since that's where it's supposed to go. Might want to make sure that its a nice, smooth, soft surface though. Every inch of the figure and the ball is covered with a paint that has a laquered look to it. I've got a feeling that this thing'll chip like a motherf*.
Speaking of, let's take a look at that figure.
The toy is made to match the style of the graphics and that means huge shoulders. Honestly, all you can see is shoulders. This is like 70% shoulders. I've got a feeling that Samus is really a Liefeld drawing in there.
Still, the aesthetic is good looking. I'm not the biggest fan of anime, but I love their robot designs and this is pretty bad-ass. The whole thing is covered in a nice, shiny, metallic finish that just screams "high-end toy! Don't scratch me!" It's going to be a bitch trying to keep this thing pristine.
Inside the box, there is a cardboard insert that has a square pre-perforated. I'm guessing you're supposed to fit it to some dedicated stand that's available at some specialty shop somewhere. I can't imagine you're supposed to glue it to a block of wood. That sounds too American to me for a Japanese import toy. Anyway, if you just want her standing up, she'll do a great job of it, and you'll have that little squarish piece of cardboard to display her on.
This figure is just about the size of a 6 inch Marvel figure, maybe a little smaller. Now she's a broad in a metal suit, so I imagine that would put her in the 7 foot range, meaning she should be taller. Oh, well. Scale wasn't something that the guys at Max Factory and the Good Smile Company promised me when I bought this thing.
What she lacks in size though, she makes up for in weight. This thing is heavy! I'm hoping that means it's durable, although it's probably due to the extra weight of the paint that's been applied to the figure.
Now, back to those accessories:
Like I said, she comes with 4 extra hands, making it 5 in total. There's the standard fist, a gripping hand (though there's nothing that she can grip in the box), a bitch slap hand (or high-five, depending on your mood), a thumbs up hand, and one where she's counted to five.
This is the perfect kind of accessory for collectors. It gives you a ton of play options and means you can display her in a lot of different poses.
To make it even better, there is an extra weapon module that attaches to the front of her gun arm. You just need to pull off the original nozzle, and pop the power-up on:
Oh, and she also comes with 2 blast effects: a single shot, and one that's two shots in rapid succession.
Ok. Let me slow it down for you.
So, to sum up this section, there are a lot of display options available to you. It kind of helps with the sting of her Php 2,600.00 price tag.
But we're not done. She also has great articulation. In fact, this is quite possibly the best articulation I have ever seen. Not only are all the joints useful, they're all functional. None of them are falling constantly falling a part on me like they were with the Revoltech Iron Man or hopelessly limited like Marvel Select Thor (except maybe the head, but then it has a good swivel range).
She has a ball jointed neck (that is limited by the aforementioned shoulder and torso assembly to a swivel), what seem to be ball jointed shoulders attached to a swivel that allows the arms to swing outward, a swivel bicep, hinged elbows, swivel wrists, hinged wrists, ball jointed hips, swivel thighs, double-hinged knees, hinged ankles that also swing so as to stay level with the ground, and a toe swivel that allows the foot to look more normal in kneeling poses.
Oh, and she can actually kneel!
Frankly, this effort by Figma has me wanting to go back and start picking up some of those bishoujo figures in the series that I passed up before. If they were cheaper, I just might have. But considering that this figure cost me almost as much as a 9" Play Arts Kai Batman, or nearly as much as it would have cost me for two Return of Marvel Legends figures at Greenhills, I'm going to have to come back to my senses.
Does that make me regret buying this figure?
Hell no. This thing is awesome and if you ever found yourself trapped on the planet Zebes, trying to figure out just how you're supposed to defeat Mother Brain, you should buy this thing, too.