Preorder Outlook XIV

New preorder post but no Fates are listed within … what is this world coming to? Though this post is lessened by the lack of Fate, there are still a lot of great figures that are up for preorder, so let’s get to it.

December

Amane Shiratori from Anata no Shiranai Kangofu
Many attractive figures made their debut at Wonder Festival a few months ago. The one that excited me the most was FREEing’s Amane Shiratori. I have Questioners’s old version and I liked the anime adaptation of her h-game, and so I was happy to see that another figure was being made of her. The really thrilling aspect of her figure is that she’s being made in 1/4 scale, which is fantastic. I’m happy to see FREEing making ero figures in 1/4 scale, particularly since I’m still annoyed that Daiki Kougyou wussed out on providing a castoff option for their Cobra Kai-sculpted Saber figure.

Mizuki Tachibana from Gravion
This is a figure from a series I know nothing about, which is going to be a common theme in this post. A few things stand out here: her large size, as she’s listed as 1/4.5 scale, her attractive and abbreviated outfit, and her price tag, which is rather high, even taking her size into account. I’m not certain I’m going to order this figure; I’m thinking I may hope it hits the bargain bin, since it doesn’t have the look of a figure that will be in high demand.

Incidentally, I always see the Gravion DVDs at Best Buy and I always think about picking them up just because of the cover art. I still have the Godannar DVDs to go through, though.

Tamaki Kousaka from To Heart 2
At the start of the year, Tamaki looked like an It-Girl of 2011, but as we near 2012, her prominence has tapered off. Not that she hasn’t gotten a ton of figures – she certainly has, but very few of them are memorable in any way. I don’t think this particular Tamaki will get a more favorable reception but it caught my eye and I like it a lot – except for her chin, which looks like it could pop open a beer can. I haven’t bought any Griffon figures in a while and I’m not certain if I’m going to pick this one up, but they’ve done a nice job with some of their To Heart 2 figures, particularly the school swimsuit ones like Sasara.

January

Miku Hatsune from Vocaloid
I wrote earlier about how this figure appeals to me, even though I didn’t care much for it at first. I’m definitely getting it now. I need to start designing the photo prop (dubbed the Machine of Joy by Fabienne, which is a great name). I’ve seen a lot of discussion about the base that comes with the more expensive version but I wasn’t ever really interested in it; it’s way too big and neglects the sort of possibilities provided by her facial expression.

Naoe Kanetsugu from Hyakka Ryouran Samurai Girls
I stopped watching the anime before Naoe showed up so I don’t know much about her, though I vaguely recall hearing that she appeared in a tentacle-themed episode. Tentacles or no, that’s still not enough to get me to give that show another chance. I like the character designs though, and I’m glad that Naoe isn’t an exclusive. It’s a great-looking figure, one that I’m looking quite forward to.

Aegis from Persona 3
Some people are tired of Aegis figures but I am not one of them. Right after I beat Persona 3, I went looking for a Persona 3 figure and the only PVC figure was Alter’s old one, and that one still gets an exorbitant markup for a used copy. This figure looks fantastic, though I have to admit, I wasn’t too fond of its face at first; her very pale skin and red lips kinda reminded me of a circus clown. Close up, though, she looks fine.

Sasara Kusugawa from To Heart 2 Dungeon Travelers
Tamaki may hoard the bulk of the love, but To Heart 2′s Sasara has gotten her share of figures, and this one – from the spinoff PSP RPG – looks spectacular. Her clothing is both elegant and sexy but she also looks great in castoff mode. I’m really looking forward to this figure. Moeyo has pictures of her sans clothing. Personally, I’d like to see a figure of her in what appears to be her default class outfit; maybe Kotobukiya or someone will make it happen.

February

“Cat and Chair” from Planet of the Cats
I have no idea if the name and source of this figure are correct, since Hobby Search often uses machine translation for their product descriptions and Amiami is not carrying this product on their international site. And though I don’t like animal ears nor am I huge fan of the manufacturer, and though I’d like to see a better picture of her face, I think I’m going to order this figure. I like the major theme depicted here, which is to say, a cute girl chilling out on a chair. With a cat. That’s all there is to it.

Erio Touwa from Denpa Onna to Seishun Otoko
I enjoyed the anime adaptation of Denpa Onna, at least up until around the fourth episode when I decided that there wasn’t going to be any plot development, just weird females interacting with the male lead, and stopped watching it. I don’t mind six episodes of weirdness in lieu of a story, a la FLCL, but I don’t think I want to watch a full season of it. Even FLCL starts to drag a bit around its midpoint. Erio is really cute, though, and so is this figure. I’m thinking of ordering it, but I’m still not sure how to evaluate Alphamax’s proficiency with PVC figures and I’m nearly certain that someone like Good Smile Company or Alter will make a better figure.

Incidentally, Boku no Tomodachi ga Sukunai’s second episode is a huge improvement from the somewhat somnambulant first episode. I’m really enjoying this show now.

Merry Nightmare from Yumekui Merry
Here’s a figure of a character I know nothing about from a series I know nothing about. The only anime named Yume Kui I’ve watched is a recently-concluded two-episode OVA. I don’t recommend clicking that link if you’re on a public computer, by the way. This is a really cute figure and knowing nothing about a character hasn’t ever stopped me from buying merchandise before, but I’d probably want to know a bit more about this series before ordering this one.

March

Astraea from Sora no Otoshimono
Figures of Sora no Otoshimono characters have been slow to trickle out – we’ve heard nothing about Grands’s Nymph in months – so this figure of Astraea is a welcome sight. It appears to be very nicely done, capturing Astraea’s confident and rather ditzy personality. I like it a lot, and I hope the prototype is an accurate representation of the final product.

Shinobu Oshino from Bakemonogatari
Bakemonogatari is one of those series that I probably ought to watch and everyone is going to tell me to watch it and yet I’m pretty sure I’m never going to watch it. Shinobu really is a cute character, though, and despite my unfamiliarity with the show or its source material, I might not be able to resist this charming figure.

Super Sonico from Nitroplus
1/6 scale, lewd pose that just begs to be taken advantage of … I’ll let the president explain this one:

April

Horizon Ariadust from Kyoukai Senjou No Horizon
April is the month of exclusives, and this one is – unusually – from Wave and depicts a character from – unusually – a series that has just kicked off. Also unusually, this figure is 1/8 scale rather than the 1/10 scale Wave likes to use for way too many of their products. There’s no reason this figure ought to be an exclusive, but at least it’s not too expensive. I can’t help but think somebody else is going to make a better figure of this character, but I’m leaning towards ordering it anyway, as it looks reasonably nice and I really like the character design.

Noel Vermillion from BlazBlue
Another exclusive, as all Queen’s Gate figures are, Noel comes from the well-regarded fighting game BlazBlue. Fighting games don’t seem to get many figures so I have some doubts that anybody else will make a Noel figure – FREEing might, I suppose, but knowing how their Rachel and Makoto figures look, I think I’d rather they not. That makes this figure more attractive, although it looks pretty good on its own. Curiously, the pose strongly calls to mind Alter’s old Teana Lanster figure. This figure may also provide an answer to the long-pondered mystery of whether Noel wears panties or not. I’ve actually seen this debate brought up on several message boards but nobody knows the answer.

Yagyu Jubei from Hyakka Ryouran Samurai Girls
And yet another exclusive, this figure is a recolor of a figure Alter released last year, which was also an exclusive. I’m not a big fan of paizuri porn but I can’t deny there is something very attractive about Jubei sliding her sword along her chest. Actually, I think her face and hair are the best parts of this figure. I’m pretty sure I’m ordering all three exclusive figures that I listed here, even though it’s a bit annoying to have to pay up front. There’s a very nice review of the original version of this figure at Figyura.

This entry was posted in Preorder Outlook and tagged , , .

35 Responses to Preorder Outlook XIV

  1. Adam says:

    I’m planning to pick up Naoe, Aegis, and Astraea, personally.

    Haven’t watched Hyakka Ryouran/Samurai Girls yet, but I do like the character designs and I think Naoe’s the best looking figure from the series since Alter’s original Jubei. I don’t like support stands, so I have some reservations about her hammer, nice as it looks, but I felt the her backside was too good to pass up.

    Like you, I’ve been waiting for a nice Aegis figure. I played (and enjoyed) a good bit of Persona 3: FES, though I never finished it. Aegis was my favorite going in just based on her character design, but I came away kind of disappointed with her personality in-game. I never maxed her relationship, so maybe she gets more interesting somewhere along the way. Either way, Alter’s latest looks quite nice. I’m surprised to see them going 1/6 scale.

    Astraea strongly reminds me of Kotobukiya’s Gemaga-exclusive Corticarte with her pose. I figure I don’t need two almost identically-posed figures and I’m already rather disappointed with Corticarte, so I’m leaning toward selling her and buying Astraea.

    You already found my thoughts regarding Alter’s swimsuit Jubei. Thanks for the plug, BTW. :)

    • Tier says:

      That’s pretty much the same way I’m looking at Samurai Girls merchandise; I eagerly anticipated the anime and then found it absolutely appalling, so I’m going to pretend it doesn’t exist and buy the figures based solely on how they look.

      Though Persona 3 is one of my favorite RPGs, I don’t actually have any PVC figures of any of the characters. I’ve kinda been thinking about looking for Alter’s Mitsuru figure, since I liked her character a lot. Pretty much the only characters I didn’t care much for were the dog and the little emo kid.

      You’re welcome! I’ve been checking Mandarake off an on over the last year or so for that Jubei figure, mainly because of your review. I’m glad that she’s getting a re-release, or a re-color, to be more accurate.

  2. Nightmare says:

    I thoroughly enjoy watching reviewers challenge themselves and Amane and Miku should give you plenty to work with. My fingers are still crossed that you’re secretly building a Superman ice fortress for Leicia.

    Based on your preference, I’m a little surprised that Branwen from Queen’s Blade didn’t make the list. You also previously mentioned the Dendrobium sisters and if you’re only getting one my vote is on Viola due to colors and choice of pet.

    While most of these figures are great looking it’s a depressing fact that I’m just getting one of them. I really hope things pick again come early next year because I’m not seeing anything between now and March that’d spark enough interest in my mind. That or me changing personal preferences rather quickly.

    • Tier says:

      Man, I haven’t even though about Leicia; I guess I ought to think up something for her, since I’m really looking forward to her now. I have been looking for some ways of constructing artificial ice or crystals (for a different figure) but I’ve had zero luck.

      I did kinda think about ordering Branwen but I’m not really too fond of her face. I’m also not really fond of the tattoo on her ass; I’m not really that big on tattoos on women. I’m not really that big on tattoos in general, actually. I did get a Sigui figure recently and her character design is done by the same artist as Branwen’s, I think, so I might change my mind.

      • Jingo says:

        Felt similarly about Branwens face, but the more I look at the figure, the more I want it despite it. She looks to have a nice, big, round butt, and I like the look of her tummy too, though admittedly that’s an odd basis for buying a figure.

  3. feal87 says:

    There are too many figures I would like to pick…:P
    Awww, my wallet is going to cry! :D

    • Tier says:

      That is the way it goes! Particularly for the exclusive stuff. Though if the exchange rate continues to crater, maybe paying six months in advance isn’t that bad.

  4. Kanchi says:

    I just ordered the cat girl myself through Amiami myself, it’s just something about the trio of chair, girl, and chains that just seems appealing. Even though it’s not offered on the international site, there’s loopholes you can get through to order stuff from the Japanese site and still have it in your international cart. It’s a little tedious, but it also works wonders for stuff in the sales page that’s listed as sold out, but actually is in stock on the regular site.

    I don’t know how much you actually use Amiami with the whole hostage situation from a few weeks back, but since Amiami is my primary site, it really comes in handy to have, especially when Hobby Search throws the cannot be purchased with Paypal tag. I figured Amiami would just remove the item from my cart like their FAQ says, but I’ve had no problems so far.

    • Tier says:

      I do still use Amiami, though mainly for in-stock stuff rather than preorders. The “hostage” stuff was mostly tongue-in-cheek and I don’t actually have any animus against them, though I still think they ought to introduce a user account system, since having to search my e-mail to check what I’ve ordered is kinda annoying. The combination of lower prices and an automated recombination system would probably convince me to switch my orders to Amiami.

      I think Hobby Search doesn’t actually enforce that “Cannot pay by Paypal” thing; I recently got Daiki Kougyou’s Tsuneko figure which had that disclaimer, but I paid by Paypal anyway. I’m not sure why they include that on their more explicit figures; I’m guessing it’s mainly an ass-covering gesture in case Paypal objects.

      • JD says:

        Pay al no longer has restriction on using it’s service for adult items. It all started when eBay austrailia requires paypal or direct cc for all purchases, including adult itmes. eBay then did this in the US. I use Hobby Search and have only ever paid by paypal

        • Tier says:

          That is good to know. Though I guess Hobby Search is going to keep that disclaimer up to confuse people, sort of like how Amiami notes “For sale in Japan only” on Good Smile Company’s products, even though they surely have no problem selling those goods to international customers.

  5. Wieselhead says:

    Sasara Kusugawa looks great in that outfit and her face is just beautiful, yet I don’t trust the company which is manufacturing her very much, also the price is quite high.
    I hope she will turn out like in the promo shots.

    The Cat and Chair figure has a great pose, only the face looks not so nice.

    The face expression of Astraea is very well captured here, but somehow I consider to rather order Plums version ^^
    I already placed my order for Shinobu Oshino and you should start to watch the show someday, its very good stuff and has a cool animation style ;)
    As Soniko fan I should get Gift’s figure of Soniko, but I still feel a bit uncomfortable with the combination of pose and face expression, she looks not very happy there.

    Ah yeah, this figure of Noel Vermillion looks really good, an awesome pose and an outfit which reveals her petite and sexy back. I also like the cool cap. Its a bit unfortunate that she’s exclusive, but I guess I will order her from a proxy soon.

    • Tier says:

      Daiki is a pretty decent company, though they are rather inconsistent. I think Sasara will look pretty close to what we’ve seen, though I’m still smarting at the changes they made to 1/4 scale gangsta lean Saber (who I really need to review one of these days).

      Plum’s version of Astraea is hilarious but I’ll be honest, I’m hesitant to go with that version just because my opinion of their Nymph figure has gotten more negative. On the other hand, I’m hoping Alphamax’s Astraea isn’t actually a 1/9 scale figure or something.

      Yeah, I should watch Bakemonogatari; if I can find time to watch a trashy show like Freezing, I ought to be able to make time to watch a well-received show like Bakemonogatari.

      Sonico’s face is the best part of that figure! The possibilities are endless there.

      • Wieselhead says:

        Well I didn’t liked the face of Plum’s Nymph, but the promo shots of their Astraea make it hard to resist. I will wait a bit, it doesn’t look like she’s sold out before release, maybe Astraea lands in the bargain bin

        mhh is Freezing any good?
        I’ve planned to watch this or Infinite Stratos next,

        haha thats true theres a lot of room for creativity ^^

        • Tier says:

          I am guessing Astraea has a good chance at that. I’m noticing quite a few figures hitting the bargain bin recently, including one I just picked up.

          Ahahahahahahahahaha … no, no it is not XD It’s pretty bad and honestly, I’m not sure if there’s anything I liked about it. Okay, I liked Rana (or Lana), but I hated the male lead (no surprise there) and most of the other characters were boring as hell. Then again, I’ve heard Infinite Stratos is pretty bad too. I’m not sure which is the worse series, to be honest.

          • Wieselhead says:

            Ok thx for your opinion, then no Freezing for me;D
            both shows sounded similar, sci-fi + harem
            I guess both aren’t that good for me haha

          • Tier says:

            Yeah, you’re probably better off watching something else XD I mainly watched it just to see how bad it is. Sad to see, it really is as bad as I expected it to be. Least it had tits, I guess.

  6. 5ushi says:

    The Sasara figure. I’m with Wieselhead; price is on the higher side of things but I’m not very informed of this particular company. Though the promo / prototype shots from Moeyo do show HUGE promise.

    As for the Miku figure. I’m kicking myself for not getting it when the orders were open. The more I see, the more I agree.

    • Tier says:

      Daiki’s been around for a while, though they’ve never been a very mainstream company. Some of their figures – like their miko Kanu Unchou and bunny Haruhi – are fantastic. Quite a few of their figures are of very esoteric appeal. And they’ve got some figures that look pretty bad. They do a lot of garage kit-to-PVC conversions, and they also work with a lot of the same sculptors. Fortunately, Sasara’s sculptor has worked on a lot of good figures, including Max Factory’s well-liked Kureha Touka and the aforementioned miko Kanu. And also Tsuneko, who I have in her box here. I should probably review her soon.

  7. Cantan says:

    Got a new power supply for my monitor – back to normal now.

    This has been a very bad month for me for expenditure – doing a lot of costly redecoration and have had a quote of $2,500-$3,000 for new carpets which I do need… but also have had to shell out for Black Hanekawa and AlphaMax’s Kusanagi… no way in hell I was going to miss that one!

    Despite this I have preordered Alter’s Yagyu Jubei… one of these days Tokyo Hunter might get round to despatching my Megahouse Senhime too! Just couldn’t resist – I was stalking some second hand ones from the original release on YJA but they were going above the 18k limit that I was using at that time – glad I didn’t get them!

    Also I liked the look of the Lili De Rochefort exclusive. Managed to let the order date pass without buying but I was sorely tempted.

    I really am trying to get my preorders back under control as my other costs over the last 3 and next 2 months are getting horrendous. I still have the Dizzy rerelease on preorder and am tempted by a couple of other rereleases (I avoided the Queen’s Gate Alice, but GSC’s Saber Lily and New Line’s Revy are still in the back of my mind).

    Only other new release I have added to my preorder at this stage is Megahouse’s Branwen – think it’s the branded butt and worried expression!

    Am trying to resist buying a certain Dakimakura at the moment that I thought I had missed out on… I know that my finances are shot to hell at the moment and will take about 6 months of low expenditure to recover… but…

    You get the idea

    • Tier says:

      Ouch >.< Friend of mine bought a house a few years ago and he’s had to sink a bunch of money on repairs, even though I think it was built less than ten years ago. I didn’t know garage doors were so costly till he told me how much it was going to cost to repair his (I think it was thousands of dollars).

      Haha, yeah, I’ve been waiting on Senhime too. I got an e-mail from him saying that his supplier was having some distribution problems, and I’m guessing you got the same e-mail as well. A bit annoying, since the whole point of proxy services is distribution – but oh well. I did get Native’s Nana and Sigui from him just a few days ago. Would be nice to get Senhime since I’ve got a few photographic ideas I’d like to try out with her.

      Yeah, I liked Lili a lot too and I was thinking about ordering her. Then I flat-out forgot about her and the deadline passed. I’m not sure I liked her enough to pay the proxy markup, though – I may just see if she shows up on Mandarake sometime next year. I get the feeling she will, since she’s not showing a ton of skin.

      Man, dakimakura covers … I just put in an order for one and I have to order the Dizzy one too. So much stuff to buy. At least I think I’m done with massive car maintenance bills, now that I’ve got its timing belt and a pair of tires replaced. Hopefully nothing goes wrong with it, since it’s getting to the point where I’m thinking I might be better off just getting a new car.

  8. Phil says:

    That few pics with Barack are priceless! Can’t wait to see that one

  9. BioToxic says:

    There’s a reason you see Gravion DVDs all over the place. It’s so shit no one buys it. When ADV UK shutdown they struggled to sell off most of their stock of this, and a few others. I unfortunately bought the first season singles for £3, and I want my £3 back along with the 6 hours it wasted.

    I’ll be picking up Alters’ Naoe Kanetsugu as well, who I’m glad isn’t exclusive. Although I must admit I’m looking forward to Penguin Parades’ version more because of the cast-off. Alter seem to have gone for her original character design, whereas Penguin Parade looks a bit more like the anime design where I thought she looked cuter.

    I thought about picking up Noel Vermillion myself, but she’s not going to be cast-off and doesn’t look too much like her character. The pose and everything looks wicked, it’s just her face doesn’t look like Noel. And those guns look more like concrete slabs than anything.

    Yume Kui was good although I have to question the dudes motives some of the time. 2 episodes wasn’t enough to get to see all the girl individually. The light brown hair girl with glasses and her friend just seemed to pop up out of no where. Kyouko (the one with the scar) was the best I thought, she should have had a whole episode dedicated to her but oh well. Oh Yumekui Merry, what’s that :P.

    • Tier says:

      Hmm, well, that is good to know. I guess I still have a ton of other series to pick up anyway, like Kampfer, Demon King, Sora Kake Girl, and Clannad, since everybody who has watched it seems to have liked it very much.

      Yeah, I gotta admit, I’m getting the Noel figure mainly because it’s Noel and not because I’m in love with the sculpt. It’s sort of the same thing with Kotobukiya’s Queen’s Gate Dizzy; I wasn’t actually thrilled with the sculpt or her face, but I wasn’t going to turn down a Dizzy figure.

      Yume Kui made absolutely no sense to me XD I have the feeling the game is fleshed out in much greater detail. Still some very nice scenes, though I was hoping Yumi would get more time. Yeah, I liked Kyouko too – the nipple piercings were pretty hot. Alter should make figures of the characters from this Yume Kui too.

  10. Wolfheinrich says:

    Many tasteful figures coming out, the one that caught my eyes are none other than Super Sonico, looks like the president and I share the same fetish? I have always had the hot for Noel Vermillion and Yagyu Jubei but I doubt I would pull the trigger on them as my budget are already allocated well into next year due to the twin Sabers and Sakura Taisen Dollfie Dream =/

    • Tier says:

      Quite probably! There’s a bit of everything for people to like with Sonico, I think … maid costume, pink hair, headphones, big asses …

      • Kyzel says:

        I believe the Sonico one (without the tub) is $180? And with the tub its another $30? That figure is oh Ohh so tempting. Either I get that, a ps vita, 3ds, a 360, or a new laptop… Should I decide with a roulette?

  11. Tier says:

    The one without the tub is about $105 at the current exchange rate at Hobby Search, and I think it’s a bit cheaper at Amiami. Me, I think I’d get a new laptop, if I needed a new computer. I love my figures but I’d probably prioritize a computer before everything, unless I had a machine that worked okay.

  12. I predict that the Noel figure will have her legs tightly squeezed around the upper thigh area to ensure that nobody can tell if she wears panties! Some answers are better left unknown. Hell, they even obscured the shots in the queens gate book! There’s a shot straight up between her legs and a piece of cloth gets in the way so you can’t tell if there’s panties or not!!

    • Tier says:

      I’m sure they’ll cop out that way or in some other way. I remember seeing the game sprites and they are all very cleverly drawn to keep this mystery alive. However, I am fully confident that some brave collector in Japan will have no problem ripping the figure’s clothes off to settle the question once and for all. I’m looking forward to the answer.

  13. Moetsu says:

    Where did you pre-order the Noel one from? I’m having a hard time finding a vendor that sells it…

  14. Cantan says:

    Alter’s Panty… that must have Tier written all over it!

    • Tier says:

      I think you are probably right. Can’t believe there’s no pantyshot in any of the promo photos, though. I mean, don’t they know her name?

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