Welcome to a very special edition of Figma News Fridays; one that I always enjoy writing, and never actually occurs on Fridays.
Sunday July 27 was the date of the annual summer Wonderfestival! Wonderfestival is one of the most anticipated events for figure collectors as it is essentially an exhibit for what we have to look forward to in the next part of the year. This being Figma News Fridays, I will only be discussing the figma side of the event, but seeing that I am able to write a sizable post about theses figures each week, I’m sure we all know that Wonderfestival provides much to talk about. However, keeping in mind that there is much much more to see at the event, I will follow up tomorrow with a list of personal highlights.
Following my usual setup for Wonfes posts, we will begin with announcements and progress to completed prototypes. Origin and any helpful additional information will be included for each figma along with my own opinion. There’s a lot to look at and enjoy, so let’s get started!
A disappointing Wonfes a year or so ago(I was disappointed because I didn’t know who anyone was), made me decide to become more of a regular anime watcher. After successfully watching one season, I fell behind. A lot. Thankfully that did not automatically make this Wonfes a disappointment. What I am trying to say is that Shidonia no Kishi is probably on my list, but I have yet to watch it, so I do not have much to say.
But what I suppose I can say is that mecha characters are somewhat rare candidates for being made into figmas. This appears to not be because figma joints work poorly on mecha but because they work so well for human characters which there are many more of and also appeal to a wider demographic leaving Max Factory not needing to venture into mecha as often as they can.
With a slew of Nintendo characters, GSC and friends began their assault on childhoods. Sadly not being as acquainted with as many Nintendo games as I’d like, the biggest franchise to receive a figure for me was Pokemon in the form of nendoroid Red. Other classic characters are making their figma debuts, and two completely unexpected ones are Yami Yugi and Dark Magician Girl from Yu-gi-oh.
Yu-gi-oh’s place in my childhood is much like that of Sailor Moon. While many were fans of the two, I was born a few years too late to properly indulge in both in their heyday(you could arguably say the same for Pokemon), but I did rediscover these shows around the age of 13 when my interest in anime and Japanese culture began to blossom. But whereas I can say that I truly like Sailor Moon, I hesitate to call myself a fan of Yu-gi-oh. This is because my attachment to the characters stems not from the series itself, but from one of the internet’s greatest gifts: Yu-gi-oh: The Abridged Series. Creating condensed humorous versions of a series is a great way to poke at inconsistencies and lapses in logic, and I remember many a dorky sleepover spent watching the multitude of abridged series on Youtube. Yu-gi-oh Abridged is my personal favorite, and because of it, Yu-gi-oh is officially familiar enough for me to consider buying figures from it!
Seeing how cute Kotobukiya’s Dark Magician Girl Cu-poche ended up, I am looking forward to seeing the figma. and am just as excited for Yami’s accessories. The cape articulation is sure to be glorious, and who knows what other surprises from the series are in store for us?
Surely you all know of my deep love of Kirito, and how even is spite of SAO’s not meeting my expectations(far from it in fact), I continue to fawn over figures of him. Yet with the advent of GGO Kirito(AKA trap Kirito or Kiriko), my passionate heart wavers. Officially, Kirito is on my wish list, but the fact that he looks like a girl is a deterrent to say the least. Also, those pants.
But I do have to admit that I have yet to have a chance to watch the new season which may change my opinion.
Looks like Snake isn’t the only Metal Gear character we’re seeing! So what can we expect to see with these guys? Guns? Bombs? You’ll have to tell me because I literally don’t know!
*The paragraph below relies entirely on information I just obtained from Wikipedia*
Sexy Commando Gaiden: Sugoi yo!! Masaru-san is a gag manga with an anime counterpart from the 90’s. In spite of having a following in Japan, it does not fare as well overseas due to the humor catering best to those with knowledge of Japanese culture and language.
An interesting choice definitely. Also, this is the first time I recall Wing making a figma! I am sure the intended audience for this figure is thrilled, and based on some images from a quick image search, I am quite intrigued by his possible accessories.
T-terra Formars? But that’s the show with the sexy roaches! Oh no oh no his feet don’t look nearly big enough to deal with those club wielding monsters. Why does the world have to keep reminding me of those giant things!
As long as there are girls in it, Japan will make a show about anything. And even if there aren’t girls in it(like tanks. I’m looking at you, Girls und Panzer), Japan will add girls to make a show about it. I suppose that also applies to Tetsudou Musume which is about railway employees who just happen to be girls. In spite of what I’ve said, this does not mean the series is bad. Actually, I was not able to find much information about it. Still, Alice already has a nendoroid which happens to be very cute, so surely we can hope for the same with the figma.
Also, this is another figma made by a company that isn’t Max Factory. This time it’s Tomytec who I have never heard of.
Have you had enough Motoko? I hope not because a new version is on the way!
It’s amazing how different she looks in this version!
One thing I feared when Onoda Sakamichi was announced was that he would be the lone character from his series, but Max Factory has quickly proved that that is not the case by announcing Yuusuke. Will yellow bike uniforms one day be the new sailor uniform? I doubt it, but if it happens, I want everyone to say I called it.
More Idolm@ster figmas! Although I have to say that whether they mean to or not, Max Factory is creating a far more interesting like with the Cinderella Girls than the original series. Still, we now have Miss Miki to look forward to who always looks like a spirited girl. I love the gold details around her neck and waist!
Apparently Strike Witches has new content on the way which is a prime excuse for more figmas! This is Yoshika’s second figma and it just might open the door for other characters once more.
It has become apparent lately that there is not just one version of each year’s racing Miku. Racing Miku 2013 brings us the Sepang version and a bike version which recently went up for preorder. This year’s bike Miku is not nearly as sporty, but has her own charm, and with spring Kuji Miku I pretty much sold my soul to Miku anyway, so this is a definite get. I wonder if there will be an expensive bike we’ll have to buy separately?
Cardcaptor Sakura, another classic anime, has been receiving its own revival lately, and after the nendoroid came to be, a figma was inevitable. Even knowing it would happen, my fingers have been crossed this whole time, and I am happy to finally let them relax.
I’m sure many people are ultimately ultra super excited by this announcement.
Just how many types of guardians are there? At least 18.
These posts show my weakness when it comes to certain genres.
Another Miku figure, cool! Well, not really. This character is actually from the popular mobile game which got its own Playstation Vita version called Chain Chronicle V. The two only look so similar because they share the same artist. Sega Saturn is not the only character from this game to receive a figure at this Wonderfestival, and looking at the game’s art, there are many characters with awesome designs to choose from.
Saturn is being produced by FREEING, and that combined with my not knowing her character gives me a good reason to pass on her, but once you factor in that she looks like Miku and has staffs, Saturn still has a chance.
Characters: Slan, Femto, and Void
Apparently nobody wants to take closer pictures of them, but Slan and Void have finally been sculpted! Femto’s photo is from a while ago, but at least you don’t have to squint to see him.
The figma horse has appeared painted before, but this time it is sans paint and with a bridle and saddle.
I’ll call her Majesty. WEESNAW
Character: King Leonidas
Finally Leonidas in his full partially dressed glory! I like the texture on areas like his shield and spear, but worry about what might be over texturing on his face. I know that realistic faces are obviously not as smooth an anime faces, but considering that complaints about Indiana Jones revolved around his face looking bad, I think this is something to be wary of. His chest joint also looks less than spectacular, but that is nothing new with figmas, and is usually easier to overlook with paint.
Also, can you imagine the body swapping possibilities? Is Max Factory trying to relive or forget the days of figma Billy Herrington?
Character: Ninja Slayer
Origin: Ninja Slayer
It looks like we have more to look forward to from Ninja Slayer before the anime has even started! This figma from Phat company has a different design from the previous two Ninja Slayer figmas, but I have been able to find little else out about him.
Character: Satsuki Kiryuuin
Origin: Kill la Kill
Joining Ryuko, we finally have Satsuki, the undisputed law of Honnouji Academy! As with Ryuko, Satsuki’s figma is depicted in her kamui’s battle mode which is just a bit risque. However, the depiction is dead on especially in the face, so there’s not much more to ask for. I only hope that this brings about regular versions of Satsuki and Ryuko along with other characters like Mako(in both forms) and possibly Jakuzure or Nui Harime.
Origin: Shidonia no Kishi
The first Shidonia character to be sculpted gives us an idea of what to expect for the others. The sculpt is very…blocky?
Character: The Fool
Origin: Nobunaga the Fool
More mecha! What am I going to talk about for the next six months?
Character: The Thinker
Have you ever looked at classic sculptures and yearned to see them in a different pose? The David is great and all, but what if he was throwing a grenade or eating a bag of chips? Well, the time has come for you to utilize your nimble fingers to express such latent desires thanks to the fine folks at FREEING who are bringing us a figma of THe Thinker: the statue.
If anything, this Wonfes has proved that one opened up to other companies, there are no lines to the figma world. And looking at the plethora of popular characters Good Smile Company has gotten a hold of thanks to their partnership with Disney(I’ll go over my favorite product of this union in my personal highlights post), surely GSC and friends aim to take over the world. So rejoice my friends, for soon there will be no distinction between figma and man or figma and animal, for all will be figmas.
Character: Akuma Homura
Origin: Gekijouban Mahou Shoujo Madoka★Magica
So we meet again, Akuma Homura! I’m sure you all know how I feel about this character, so I’ll not talk about that for the next two sentences.
Let’s be honest, this is one of the coolest figmas I’ve seen. The marbled skirt is awesome, the wings are awesome, the hair has a wonderful flow, and the faces express what dwells at the very core of Akuma Homura. Knowing my disdain for the character and choice to not purchase any merchandise bearing her image, but being well aware of the great design, I feared for my resistance upon seeing the finished product, and am happy to say that even when faced with this much awesome, I can continue to not buy Akuma Homura.
*The two sentences are up. Rant time is in full swing*
This is just not how I want to remember Homura, and seeing her this way makes me sad for her. However, I acknowledge that my dislike of this development is fully emotional, so for those of you who do like her, enjoy!
Oh but that’s not all because Aniplex(who you may recall is distributing this figure instead of GSC and has made her exclusive) pulled a Kyubey on us and began preorders already. Places like BiJ have already sold out, but do keep in mind that Rightstuf(who is the official US Aniplex distributor) should carry her.
For those interested in tracking her down, Homura retails for 5463 yen and will be released in February 2015.
Origin: Kantai Collection
If there’s anything I like more than a sideways glance, it’s a smug sideways glance, and Amatsukaze sure has it! Amatsukaze also happens to be my favorite Kan Colle~ design so far as she embodies many of the unique aspects I liked about Shimakaze without the…thong. I’ve stayed away from Kan Colle~ thus far, but depending on what Amatsukaze’s accessories are, that just might change.
Characters: Conan Edogawa and Culprit
Origin: Meitantei Conan
Conan, another classic character, has been long in the making, and in spite of being fully colored, we have yet to get a good picture of what his figma will be like. Things are still murky with Culprit and Conan himself is missing joints for the time being.
Origin: Fire Emblem: Kakusei
I know that many of you have been waiting for this for a long time! So, what do you think?
Character: Racing Miku 2014
Origin: GOOD SMILE Racing, Vocaloid
Figma Racing Miku 2014 finally makes her sculpted debut! And for the first time in forever…I don’t like her that much. Surely you know how forgiving I am with figmas–especially unique Mikus, and although I do still like the original art, this figma’s transition did not fare as well as I’d have liked. She definitely does not look bad though. The hair is crinkly and a vivid blue, and her body looks great, but something just hasn’t convinced me. However, I’ve yet to make my final decision because none of the other accessories have been revealed yet which is unusual.
Character: Red Pyramid Thing
Origin: Silent Hill 2
Painted for the first time, it’s Red Pyramid Thing! Not being a Silent Hill fan, the best I can say is that he looks just as I’d expect a pyramid headed thing to look. Check out those bloodstains! The only things that appear off to me are his strikingly white gloves(Mickey Mouse) and that the finish on his blade looks a little cheap and not like metal at all.
Character: Shinobu Oshino
Although my infatuation with Bakemonogatari ended long ago, I still count Shinobu as a character I would like to own in figma form.
But seeing the figma sculpted and painted, I find myself underwhelmed. From clothing to hair and face, she appears dated and like something you’d expect to see from 2012. Even the joints are more visible than they should be. There’s just nothing saying wow to me. I am awaiting accessories to make my final decision as usual, but my fading interest in ‘Monogatari and the lack of pizzaz in Shinobu is steering me away from adding her to my collection.
Origin: Sword Art Online II
You didn’t think Kirito would be alone, did you? I still do not know how much I will like Sinon as a character, but her design is very attractive(more so than Kirito’s imo), so I have my eye on her!
Origin: SoniAni: Super Sonico The Animation
Sonico’s third figma and second in a bikini because Sonico hates clothing! Now we see that all of that exposed skin has given Sonico a tan. To accommodate her tan, she has a silver bikini.
Being naturally tan skinned, I now have something to show people if they ever ask why I do not want to wear a pink wig(not that I am asked this often). I do think the silver bikini was a good choice, but wonder why Max Factory does not try to make her bikini more exciting with a pattern. Her face is also pudgy and cute as is the Sonico logo tan line on her leg. I wish I was cool enough to have a picture of my face on my leg.
That brings this special edition of FNF to a close! I have been working on this post all day 1. because it is long and 2. because I’m researching for a paper at the same time, so I’ll keep this conclusion brief and ask what you all think. Highlights? Disappointments? Let your voice be heard in the comments, and please look forward to my next Wonfes post which will include the non figma things which caught my eye.