Cleric from Bikini Warriors (NSFW)

Cleric from Bikini Warriors

My interest was piqued when Bikini Warriors was announced, being that I have a thing for scantily-clad female battlers. My enthusiasm was dampened when I learned that each episode would be less than five minutes in duration; I anticipated that viewing the show would be both pointless and disappointing. However, having watched the series, it actually works out okay. The truncated run time actually works in its favor as it excises most of the inconsequential filler that constitutes most contemporary anime. Each episode of Bikini Warriors generally comprises a brief action sequence – typically lewd in content – a silly joke that lubricates the progression of the encounter, and then a quick wrap-up, with none of the tedious exposition and anesthetizing monologues that pervade so many anime series. More shows ought to follow this model. The Fate/stay night anime adaptations, for example.

The purpose of Bikini Warriors is, of course, to move merchandise, and that’s why we’re looking at this figure here. This is the Cleric, who didn’t actually appear in the television commercial-cum-anime, but that’s okay since she still looks good and really, that’s what counts here.
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Akane Indou from Homare Art Works (NSFW)

Akane Indou from Homare Art Works

One of the more pleasing developments in figure collecting is that a number of manufacturers are now producing figures derived from the artwork of well-known illustrators, especially those of ero publications. Misaki Kurehito’s artwork has received a number of figure adaptations, Cle Masahiro Murakami Suigun recently got one each, Oda Non’s work is getting a bundle of figures from a variety of companies, and so on – all good stuff. Here we have a figure based off of an illustration by Homare, an artist who has been released image packs on DLSite and similar sites under the circle name FOOL’S ART GALLERY. This is the first figure to be released that is sourced from his work, which is curious as he’s been in the business for years, even designing a Queen’s Blade character, though it never was turned into a figure. A real disappointment, that. I kind of think this costume would have made for a fine figure, even a mainstream one. But although it’s a tad belated, we finally have a Homare-designed figure, so let’s take a look.
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Sasara Kusugawa from To Heart 2: Dungeon Travelers (Fighter Version) (NSFW)

Sasara Kusugawa from To Heart 2: Dungeon Travelers

It took an extraordinary amount of time – this figure went up for preorder somewhere in 2015, if I remember right – but Orca Toys’s Sasara Kusugawa finally arrived a few months ago. She went up for order at about the same toy that Kotobukiya’s version did, but Kotobukiya’s version came out last year. I haven’t yet reviewed the Kotobukiya figure; while I like it quite a bit, the comparison will have to wait until I do so. Until then, we’ll take a look at just the Orca Toys figure now.
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Widowmaker from Overwatch

Widowmaker from Overwatch

Blizzcon is coming up soon and so now is an apropos moment to take a look at this statue of Widowmaker, one of the most prominent faces in Blizzard’s multiplayer first-person shooter Overwatch. I have not yet played Overwatch, being that it’s principally a multiplayer shooting game and the last title in the genre that I enjoyed playing against humans was Goldeneye. I much prefer to play shooters against the AI and my understanding is that Overwatch’s support for this mode of play is abysmal at best. Nonetheless, I’ve spent a large fraction of my life playing Blizzard games, and my re-subscription to World of Warcraft in late 2012 is the most significant factor in the downturn of posting frequency on this site. Therefore, it only seems equitable to take away from my MMO time to review this statue.
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Slingshot Babe from the Native Creators Collection (NSFW)

Slingshot Babe from the Native Creators Collection

Ero figures are all the rage these days, and Native is amongst the best at producing them. They are apparently not the best at naming them, however, and so this girl is simply known as “Slingshot Babe.” This generic moniker is perhaps not nearly as off-putting as Compact Hog, but it’s still fairly impersonal.
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Preorder Outlook LII

It’s been a few months since the last one. This list is already way too long and I’ve spent a lot more time writing it than I thought it would take, so let’s get to it.
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Sara Pezzini from Witchblade (XM Studios Version)

Sara Pezzini from the Witchblade

Occasionally we look at figures that are aimed at the Western audience. Or in this case, made from a Western property; one would think that this figure is targeted at the US market but it’s actually manufactured by XM Studios, a relatively small company based in Singapore. As such, it’s not actually widely distributed in North America. Another odd thing about this statue is that while comic book properties are wildly popular these days, most of the most lucrative products are derived from movie adaptations, such as Wonder Woman and Deadpool. Witchblade – the figure obviously depicted here – is essentially a retired title at this moment, as it completed its 185-issue run in 2015. And one more unusual thing about this figure is its price; at $780, it is likely the most expensive figure in my collection.
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Reika Shimohira from Gantz: O (Sword Version)

Reika Shimohira from Gantz: O

Union Creative’s Hdge Technical Statue lineup is an eclectic grouping but the figure we’re looking at today isn’t too different from Motoko Kusanagi, the last Union Creative figure we looked at – that is, female, sexy, scantily-clad, and sourced from a sci-fi series. The Major, of course, was recently featured in a big Hollywood movie (that, by most accounts, wasn’t particularly well received). The figure we’re looking at today is of Reika Shimohira, one of the stars of Gantz – and more specifically, Gantz: O, a CG-animated feature-length film released last year. The series features significant thematic similarities – notably, that of hapless participants forced by a sadistic entity to struggle for survival – to some other big motion pictures, and its blend of graphic violence, action, drama, and fanservice would be quite popular in current times. One wonders whether Hollywood will someday seek to put its own Western-style spin on the Gantz franchise.
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Preorder Outlook LI

Heh, I said in the last preorder post that I’d get it up in a week or two. Whoops. In the meantime, this post has swollen to twenty figures either preordered or receiving strong consideration for my cash money. I think this might be the longest preorder post I’ve ever written so let’s get to it.
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Houki Shinonono from Infinite Stratos (Bunny Version)

Houki Shinonono from Infinite Stratos

It’s time to look at another bunnygirl figure, and this time we’ll be examining Houki Shinonono, the querulous martinet and love interest from Infinite Stratos. FREEing appears to have an affinity for the characters from this series, as they’ve made not just one, but two quarter-scale figures of each of the principal female characters in the show, and why not? Certainly it doesn’t seem like anyone else is interested.
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