Category Archives: Random Thoughts

Year Eight Retrospective

Simone wrapped up in tentacles

Yay! This site is now eight years old. Admittedly there is not much to celebrate once more, since updates have been drastically curtailed. That’s not to say that I’ve stopped collecting figures – in fact, I have so many of them that the unopened boxes are piled meters high. Finding the time and motivation to shoot has been tough, mostly due to the new job, World of Warcraft grinding, and a resurgent interest in watching NBA games (I used to collect basketball cards with the same enthusiasm as I collect figures). Nonetheless the figures are here and as I don’t unbox them before I review them, I have considerable motivation to keep posting, since I’ll never get to display my figures if I don’t. (Well, unless I shut down the site, which I’m not amenable to doing, being that not only do I enjoy running it, I’ve already paid my hosting bill for the next year.)

The site stats haven’t changed much from the last year, or the year before that; the site doesn’t get many new viewers, but doesn’t lose many, either. That probably means that I’m not doing a good job of optimizing this site for web search but one beneficial by-product of not posting as much is that I don’t care about my traffic stats. Regardless, the stats aren’t too bad. For the last eight years, the site has gotten about 1.7 million visitors and 14 million pageviews, which is pretty nice, I think.

One thing that lowers posting frequency is that I don’t do any dakimakura cover reviews or doll posts anymore. The dakimakura posts weren’t personally interesting to do or to write about, but I actually got more questions about them than anything else I’ve ever written about. The doll posts were more interesting but I always had the feeling that they weren’t all that popular. I generally don’t pander too much but their large size made them kind of a pain to photograph, so it didn’t seem worth it to continue posting about them. I wonder if anybody misses those posts, as all I do these days are figure reviews and the preorder posts.

Anyway, new review should be posted soon; I really want to photograph some of these Bikini Warriors figures, and it would be pretty silly for me to not have reviewed any of my 7 Deadly Sins figures by the time the anime airs this summer.

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My Five Favorite Figures of 2016

And here is the much-belated list of my five most favorite figures of 2016. I have to admit that I was less moved by the selection this year than I have been in previous years, likely for two reasons. One, it’s because I’m not much of a fan of Kantai Collection, Love Live, or The Idolmaster, and it seems like there were a ton of figures from those series. And two, I don’t open my figures until I’m ready to photograph them, and I haven’t done nearly as much of that as I would have liked, which means I haven’t actually seen a lot of the figures I own. Doubtless this list will change as I open up figures; I could see that one Dragon Toy tentacle figure jumping on this list once I see it in person. But there’s no reason to wait until then, as this post has already been delayed more than enough.
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Year Seven Retrospective

Inori Yuzuriha wrapped up in tentacles

Ugh. It’s a customary thing to celebrate this site’s birthday on February 23, but given the dearth of updates over the last year, there does not seem to be much cause for ceremony. Regardless, tradition is what it is, and I scarcely need an excuse to take a photo of one of my big-ass dolls wrapped up in tentacles, so I will pay the proper respect to the occasion, as unseemly as it might be.
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My Five Favorite Figures of 2015

The week after New Year’s is the saddest week of the year: the lights go out, the trees get thrown in the garbage trucks and hauled away, the sales go quiet, and it’s months before the next fun holiday. Nonetheless, 2015 has dispersed into the ether of yesterday but before we look forward, I will observe my annual ritual of decreeing which five figures I liked the best from this past year (only a week and a day late). As I always say, the ranking here is based solely on my own preferences, with absolutely zero regard for whether a figure was popular with the masses or came from a popular show or was made by a popular manufacturer. Popular opinion does not move me much.
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Year Six Retrospective

Azone's Inori Yuzuriha 50cm doll

As usual on February 23, today we celebrate the anniversary of this website – Tentacle Armada is six years old today. It’s sort of an anticlimactic anniversary, as I have been far from diligent in keeping this website updated. Oh well. On the other hand, just the fact that this site has been around that long is a decent feat, I think.

Usually I try to include some sort of thematic photo up at the top of this post but I couldn’t really think of any auspicious way to denote a six year anniversary, so instead there’s an unrelated picture of Inori wrapped up in tentacles.
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My Five Favorite Figures of 2014

Here are my five favorite figures of the previous year, fashionably late. The tardiness is only partially due to laziness; I don’t think I felt as excited about many of last year’s figures as I did in prior years. Maybe I’m just getting old or something. I did see a number of figures that I liked in all the Wonder Festival (also known as KanColleFest) coverage this past weekend, so that’s a good thing (most of those figures were from Alphamax/SkyTube, curiously). As usual, the ranking presented here does not reflect the popularity of the figures or the characters they represent, it doesn’t reflect preorder hype or community consensus, and it doesn’t mean that I think the number one figure was the very best figure released in the last year. This list solely expresses my own thoughts and preferences.
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Year Five Retrospective

Tentacle Armada is five years old today! Hooray! Time sure does fly right by. I don’t know of too many figure review sites that have been updated continuously for five years, and with 263 figure and doll reviews currently listed here, I don’t know of many that have been as prolific, either. I don’t often talk about the state of the site but today I indulge myself: as usual, this post is the post where I pontificate about where this website has been and where it is going.
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My Five Favorite Figures of 2013 & Year-End Thoughts

2013 is on the verge of twerking its way into memory and of course, that means it’s time for a customary year-end list. Such lists often purport to rank the best things of the nearly-departed year, but that’s not the case for this particular list. Rather, this list contains my favorite figures, which means I speak for nobody but myself and I rate solely by a single criterion: how much I liked the figure. Hype, popularity amongst the collecting community, and manufacturer reputation count for nothing here. We’ll also talk a little bit about the year that was in figure collecting; without further ado, let’s jump in.
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Year Four Retrospective

Tentacle Armada is four years old today. That’s 232 figure and doll reviews, 38 dakimakura cover reviews, and one tentacle stand review. I’m pretty amazed that this site is still around, and that I’ve managed to stick to a fairly consistent posting pattern (six posts per month for the last twelve months). As I provide every 23rd of February, here is the usual anniversary wrapup post where I write about my thoughts regarding the past year and what my plans are going forward.
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My Five Favorite Figures of 2012 & Year-End Thoughts

As is traditional during this time of the year, this post will list my favorite figures of 2012. Unlike previous years, it wasn’t easy for me to come up with this list; in fact, I changed my mind once while taking photographs of these figures. Usually, there’s at least one figure per year that I really love, the sort of figure that, if it were to be damaged, I would move the heavens and earth to find a replacement for it. That figure is usually an Alter figure; in fact, Alter has made my favorite figure of each of the last three years. What about this year?
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