Tag Archives: sword

Tamaki Kousaka from To Heart 2: Dungeon Travelers (Kaitendoh Version)

Tamaki Kousaka from To Heart 2 Dungeon Travelers

Amongst anime hobby companies, Tamaki Kousaka’s popularity as a muse is everlasting. This isn’t always a good thing; the esteem in which she’s held by figure makers occasionally seems excessive, and a large segment of the collecting population greets each release of a new Tamaki figure with a collective rolling of the eyes. However, I pay no attention to that; I like Tamaki, and I own a bunch of her figures. It’s actually been over a year since I reviewed one; in other words, it’s been too long since we’ve looked at her. To remedy this insufficiency, we’ll look at one of her newest figures, which squeezes her into her Dungeon Travelers fighting outfit. We’ve seen this before; Kotobukiya made a figure of her in this outfit, but while that figure exemplified why, for a long time, people generally regarded Kotobukiya as a maker of mediocre figures, this one, by Kaitendoh, is quite a bit nicer.
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Psylocke from the Uncanny X-Force (Fine Art Version)

Psylocke from the Uncanny X-Force

As I’ve remarked before, even though Japanese anime culture has a number of parallels with Western pop culture, they don’t seem to intersect that often. This is particularly and peculiarly evident in manga and comics; despite their similarities (and the influence of American comics on the development of manga), I don’t know too many anime fans who read Western comics, and I’m certain that there are many comic book readers (particularly older ones) who don’t care that much for anime.

Despite this separation, fans on both sides frequently share a passion for collecting things, particularly figures. Figures of characters from Western properties often have some differences compared to anime figures; they are often sculpted in polystone, they are typically on the larger side, and they often come from specialist manufacturers unknown to collectors of anime figures. However, that is not the case with this particular figure; this figure of Psylocke comes from Kotobukiya, a company that every anime figure collector knows. Strangely, this figure is not the first, nor the second, nor even the third, but is the fourth figure of Psylocke that Kotobukiya has released in the last four years. Kotobukiya has made some attempts at integrating the two audiences, particularly with their Bishoujo series, which combines Western comic book and science fiction characters with anime-style design sensibilities, but they also make a number of statues targeted squarely at Western comic book collectors. We don’t often look at such figures here but as Psylocke is my favorite character in all of comic books, for her we will make an exception.
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Mary Stuart from Horizon in the Middle of Nowhere II

Mary Stuart from Horizon on the Middle of Nowhere II

Despite its impressive array of attractive characters, there still aren’t that many figures from Kyoukai Senjou no Horizon. What few there are are distributed by a wide variety of companies, and that means that those few figures comprise a myriad of looks, styles, poses, and sizes. Further, for some reason or another many of those figures were not sold through normal retail channels. Such was the case for Mary Stuart; she was supposed to be a Dengeki Fan Shop exclusive or somesuch, but HLJ stocked this figure and that’s where I bought her from. That was a fortunate thing, as I wasn’t inclined to get this figure if I needed to put in a special order, but since I have her, let’s take a look at her.
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Irma from Queen’s Blade (NSFW)

Irma from Queen's Blade

The Queen’s Blade series has come a long way from its humble, game book-based origins. Over the last few years, it’s gotten several anime shows, a number of artbooks, numerous fan-made doujinshi, a few large-scale dolls from both Azone and Volks, and of course, a ton of figures. MegaHouse has been the most prolific producer of these, and their releases have progressed in roughly chronological order, starting with the original Queen’s Blade girls, moving on to the characters of Queen’s Blade Rebellion, and continuing with Alicia from the ongoing series Queen’s Blade Grimoire. Notably, they skipped over Irma, much to my chagrin, being that she is my favorite character in the Queen’s Blade series, and for a while, I thought that they would never make a figure of her. Happily, and much to my surprise, they reversed course earlier this year and finally released her and now I can stop whining about how figure makers don’t love Irma. (Figure collectors who happen to be Melpha fans, I know your pain and feel for you.)
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Meiya Mitsurugi from Muv-Luv Alternative (Kotobukiya Version)

Meiya Mitsurugi from Muv-Luv Alternative

Continuing with the tight bodysuit theme, today we’ll take a look at Meiya Mitsurugi, the heroine from Age’s eroge Muv-Luv Alternative. Kotobukiya, of course, has made a number of figures of the characters from Total Eclipse – quite probably the best-known property of the Muv-Luv franchise, thanks to its recent anime adaptation. It’s a little bit surprising that Kotobukiya has gone to the older title, since few manufacturers aside from Volks and Good Smile Company have ever shown interest in making figures of its characters. Nonetheless, I’m glad that they have, since its character designs are quite appealing, particularly because of their pilot suits.
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Yui Takamura from Muv-Luv Alternative Total Eclipse (Eishi Strengthening Equipment Version)

Yui Takamura figure by Kotobukiya

There have been a number of figures of the characters from Muv-Luv Alternative Total Eclipse. To date, most of them have put them in swimsuits or their underwear. Not that that’s a bad thing (would you trust a heterosexual man who said he didn’t like panties?), but given the appeal and distinctiveness of Muv-Luv’s pilot suits, it’s a shame that figure makers haven’t chosen to adapt the most iconic look of the Total Eclipse characters. That is, until now; Kotobukiya has finally made a figure of lead girl Yui Takamura in her pilot suit, and that’s who we are looking at here.
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Yagyu Gisen from Hyakka Ryouran Samurai Girls

Yagyu Gisen figure by Alter

Many, many companies make figures of the characters from Hyakka Ryouran Samurai Girls, but nobody does it better than Alter. It has been a while since we’ve gotten a new figure of a core character, though; in fact, it’s been over a year since they released Naoe Kanetsugu. Charles d’Artagnan is still MIA, with not even a hint of a prototype sculpt, but presumably she’ll be along at some point in the future. In the meantime, today we will take a look at Gisen, the erotic seductress whose fiery passion and icy resolve conceal a variety of secrets.
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Dakimakura Review – Pretty Girl Knight from the Art of Nakajou (NSFW)

%3 Figure Review

I have to admit that one of my favorite themes in pop culture is the scantily-clad female fighter. It’s not as common a motif as it used to be, I think, which is sort of unfortunate, but it can still be found in anime properties like Queen’s Blade or video games like Code of Princess, which I sadly doubt I’ll ever get to play, given my general bias against handheld systems (though I do actually own a PSP, purchased mainly to play Persona 3 Portable, but I’ve since lost the UMD somewhere). It’s never been a frequent theme in dakimakura cover artwork, though, so when I saw this pillowcase, my interest was piqued straight away.
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Samurai Katanako from 7th Dragon 2020

Katanako from 7th Dragon 2020 Figure Review

The schoolgirl-with-weapons theme is a very popular one, so much so that it’s made its way into Hollywood films like Kill Bill and Sucker Punch. Still, it is a quintessential theme associated with pop Japanese culture, particularly anime and video games, and as such one of the most common weapons for such a schoolgirl is a traditional Japanese sword. It’s odd, then, that looking at my collection, I see I’ve only got a couple of figures of schoolgirls with swords. This one here is one of them.
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Alisa Ilinichina Amiella from God Eater Burst

Alisa Amiella from God Eater Burst Figure Review

When this figure went up for order, I barely knew a thing about the character, but her exotic, elegant appearance and her enormous weapon appealed to my sensibilities. I vaguely remembered hearing of a game called God Eater, though I could not remember where. Later, I learned that it is a PSP game, which explains my unawareness; despite having owned a Game Boy, Game Gear, Game Boy Advance, and a PSP, I don’t really care for handheld games. I like to be able to sit down and devote time to video games, and that’s difficult to do when on the move, and when I’m at home, I’d rather not play a game on a relatively small screen. There are a lot of PSP and DS games with good character designs, though, I must admit. Alisa is one of those good designs and though I know nothing about her, I had no trouble deciding that she looks pretty good.
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