Preorder Outlook XVIII

The first few months of 2012 were fairly quiet with respect to preorder updates, but figure collectors will soon be enjoying an embarrassment of riches. Figuratively, of course – collectors will be anything but rich come this summer.

June

Alvis Hamilton from Last Exile
I didn’t watch a lot of anime in the late 90s; when I got to college, I played PC games like Starcraft and EverQuest rather than the JRPGs I’d grown up with and didn’t really have much interest in the anime series that came out around that time. However, around 2001, I got back into anime, watching shows like Noir, Jin-Roh, Angelic Layer, and later, Last Exile. I was a fan of Range Murata’s art style and I loved the setting he designed, with its 19th century steampunk aesthetic. I never actually finished watching the show, though; I watched about half of it and lost interest. I can remember the way the ships and vanships looked, but I can’t say I remember much about the plot or the characters.

However, even though the show itself didn’t make a big impression on me, it made a big impact on my life; I really wanted Range Murata’s Spheres doujinshi and I managed to buy it through a middleman service in Japan. That led to collecting more anime merchandise, and so while I don’t remember much of the anime, Last Exile is one of the major reasons this site exists. (I also really wanted a figure of Hikaru from Angelic Layer, but nobody ever made one; even so, that was about where I began getting interested in figures. I wonder how many people on this planet would say they got into anime figures because of Angelic Layer?)

Anyway, Last Exile did well enough to get a sequel (many years later), which is where this figure of Alvis comes from. It doesn’t look like the sort of figure I’d order, normally, but I preordered it anyway. One of these days I’ll dig out my DVDs and finish up the second half of the show.

Retia Adolf from Daiteikoku
Hailing from Alicesoft strategy/porn game Daiteikoku, Retia Adolf is, well, a most unusual adaptation of former German chancellor Adolf Hitler. One might indignantly assert that the evils he inflicted upon the world should not be trivialized in this manner, and I suppose the only argument in its defense is the one that so many Japanese anime and game makers have made, that one simple question that lies at the core of so many aspects of anime culture: why not? With so many elements of anime culture already pushing – or defiantly pissing upon – the boundaries of good taste, it’s difficult to be too shocked at seeing the fuehrer get turned into a blonde anime idol girl.

It seems like Alicesoft’s developers took great pains to make Daiteikoku as gloriously offensive as possible. It’s kinda surprising they didn’t include a cartel of scheming Jewish bankers or a frothy-mouthed band of crazed, fanatical anti-whaling pirates in the game (there are pirates, though, and they are crazy).

Apparently Daiteikoku is not well-regarded amongst eroge players, and I suppose it’s not nearly as complex as Sengoku Rance, but I’m enjoying it regardless. It reminds me a bit of some of the strategy games I played while growing up, such as Star Control and The Ancient Art of War, albeit with a good deal more evil cyborg rape.

Anyway, I wasn’t overly excited by this figure of Adolf at first, but I’ve since changed my mind. Her commanding pose looks hilarious given her skimpy swimsuit, and the figure’s sculptor has done a number of highly-regarded figures, including Rin Tohsaka and Good Smile Company’s recent Shinobu Oshina. We’ll just try to ignore the historical baggage that accompanies this figure and enjoy it for what it is.

July

Alisa Amiella from God Eater Burst
I don’t know a thing about this character or God Eater Burst, to be honest. Wikipedia says it’s a PSP game, which explains why I’ve never heard of it, as I don’t play handheld consoles much and I only recently bought a PSP to play Persona 3 Portable and Pangya Fantasy Golf. That leaves me to assess this figure purely on its looks and it looks great. I’m mildly apprehensive of the fact that Plum is producting it and I wasn’t thrilled by their Nymph figure, but it’s good to see that they know exactly what this figure’s charms are; I don’t think I’ve ever seen a manufacturer explicitly point out low-angle shots.

August

Ikaros from Sora no Otoshimono
The next in FREEing’s line of 1/4 scale bunnygirls is Ikaros from Sora no Otoshimono. This figure comes directly from this illustration and looks reasonably accurate, though I can’t help thinking there’s something off with her face. That might just be an idiosyncrasy of her character design, though. More problematic is her price and the fact that August is stacked with expensive figures, and though I like this figure, it might get squeezed out of the budget.

Incidentally, FREEing’s photos of Ikaros are really, really dark; sort of an odd choice for product photography.

Kanu Unchou from Ikkitousen
There was a time not too long ago where you couldn’t go more than a week or two without seeing an Ikkitousen figure pop up for preorder. Now, the Ikkitousen manga is no longer published in the US, the anime series are long forgotten, and there are far fewer figures of its characters – particularly of Kanu Unchou, who, despite not being the main character, is the banner-bearer of the franchise. I have a fondness for Kanu, particularly in her school uniform, as Yamato’s figure was the first scale-size PVC figure I ever owned (not counting my non-scale size Kaiyodo and Yamato figures and a few Sakura Taisen figures of indeterminate manufacture). I thought that Alter’s figure would be the best one that anyone would make, but Daiki’s version looks better, and it’s also quite a bit larger. I’m pretty sure that despite its high price, I’m going to order this one. Incidentally, this figure was sculpted by Shunjii Hagii and I’ve bought quite a few of his figures without knowing it: he’s also sculpted Kotobukiya’s Masane Amaha, Max Factory’s Kureha, transvestite Yoko, Shunya Yamashita Ryomou, Leina, Tsuneko, bargain bin bikini Tamaki, and samurai Sasara.

Nanoha Takamachi from Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha
After making figures of Nanoha and Fate (under the Good Smile Company name) and Hayate as adults, Gift cranks up the loli factor with this figure of Nanoha. She’s 1/4 scale, ensuring that she’ll get odd stares from anyone who isn’t familiar with anime. Despite her obvious youth, she’s wearing a tiny swimsuit, which looks great. I think I’m going to order this one, particularly if Gift unwraps their matching Fate figure soon, though I have to admit I’m going to feel like a pedophile whenever I look at it.

Saber from Fate/stay night
Lots of figures scheduled this month have lofty price tags but Azone’s Saber is far and away the winner, with an astounding price of 68,000 yen at Hobby Search. For that sort of scratch, some people might ask, “Why not just get a Dollfie?” Well, I don’t have any plans to buy any Dollfies, though a lot of my reasons for that have nothing to do with the dolls themselves. Also, this Saber doll uses Obitsu’s 50-centimeter body, the same basic body design that Yamato’s vmf50 dolls use, which means that she’ll be about the same size as those dolls as well as the Fate Testarossa doll that I have. It also means that I have a ready supply of skirts, shoes, and bondage harnesses that she can wear. Her price is exorbitant, but I went ahead and ordered her anyway, and I’m looking forward to getting her. Saber, get your big-girl panties on, you’ve got a date with the tentacle stand this summer!

September

Aegis from Persona 3
Just a few weeks after Alter’s 1/6 scale Aegis dropped, here’s another (approximately) 1/6 scale Aegis, this time from Yamato by way of REFLECT. Although not nearly as visually interesting as Alter’s figure, it does distinguish itself by putting her in a maid costume. It also incorporates REFLECT’s unique style, which I like quite a bit – I own a number of figures by the sculptor and I like them all. However, while I like this figure (of course, if I didn’t like it, I wouldn’t be writing about it), the price tag is very high for a fairly nondescript figure and I don’t have a huge thing for maids. I do like Aegis but this’ll likely be a figure that I take a wait-and-see approach to. I gotta admit though, of all the figures on my list, I think my opinion of Aegis is improving the most quickly.

Blanc Neige from Shining Wind
Ehh … I guess I’ve ranted enough about how Sega has ruined the Shining franchise (and just about all of their other franchises), so I’ll just say this is a nice figure. Might even be nice enough that I might buy it. I like Tony Taka’s style best when he’s doing porn, and I’m less enthused about his work on the Shining series, but I guess I’d say that Blanc Neige is one of my favorite designs out of those games.

But on a different subject … seriously, the Shining series is now an anime about bread baking? Back when I played Shining Force, you had centaurs, robots, armadillos, and a hero in a bitching minidress. But now … Christ, bread baking.

Inori Yuzuriha from Guilty Crown
The two best reasons to watch Guilty Crown are to witness just how ludicrous it gets and because it has a lot of cute girls. It’s a terrible, terrible show and Inori is only in it to look sexy and become the main character’s love interest. Too bad the show’s writers weren’t interested in giving her a personality. She gets better treatment from Good Smile Company, though … on the surface, that is, because while this figure looks good, it’s listed at 17 centimeters in height, which is miniscule even for its listed 1/8 scale (notably, that makes her shorter than GSC’s Lacia). She looks good in the promo photos and I’m looking forward to her, but I’m expecting to be disappointed by this figure’s size.

Miku Hatsune from Vocaloid
There’ve been a lot of really good Miku Hatsune figures as of late, almost all of them coming from Good Smile Company. I think this one looks to be my favorite, though; her outfit is awesome and I really like her more mature look here. The only thing I’m hoping for is that her umbrella can be removed; I like to think of her as wearing a futuristic bodysuit rather than a race queen uniform. She’s listed as 21 centimeters tall, which is a good size for 1/8 scale; she’s a good inch-and-a-half taller than Inori, which is worrisome.

Milla Maxwell from Tales of Xillia
With two guys and a girl from Tales of Vesperia in their catalog, Alter is moving on to Tales of Xillia. Personally, I’m still holding out hope for a Judith figure, but I’m guessing they’re as likely to make a figure of her as they are to make one of Subaru from Beat Blades Haruka (though Narika’s re-release later this year gives me some hope). Anyway, Milla looks fantastic. She doesn’t have the most dynamic pose, but she looks dignified and sexy. I’m definitely looking forward to this one.

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54 Responses to Preorder Outlook XVIII

  1. Shashin says:

    There’s a lot of good figures coming out in the next few months, and some of these are on my list. I haven’t really collected many in the last year, and started preordered some ero-figures more recently. That lead to looking at some quality non-ero figures, some of which are on this list.

    I’m still debating the Retia figure myself, but I think I already have a lot preordered for June, so I’ll likely skip her despite her cuteness. Didn’t know that Daiteikoku wasn’t very well received; I played through it and the gameplay was solid enough to warrant playing even long after the translation ended. I actually really liked the combat system, and though I probably haven’t played it in about a year, I don’t recall it being overly simplistic when compared to Sengoku Rance. They were definitely different, but I liked them both a lot. Honestly, they’re both probably pretty light if you were to compare them to a more fleshed out RPG, but that doesn’t make the gameplay any less mindlessly addictive.

    The pirate chick was one of my favorite characters; none of her scenes were translated at the time I played, but I could tell from the CG that something special (and incredibly strange) was going on.

    I actually watched the first episode of the Shining series and I had mixed feeling about it. The bread baking thing was a bit strange, but it didn’t bother me too much since I never played the Shining games (and thus didn’t have my childhood raped.) It seems like the typical starter for your average JRPG though, which is a tad bit disappointing, I guess. I’m sure I’m probably in the minority here, but if anything bothered me, it was the art. The eyes of the heroines absolutely creep me out; they have no life into them, don’t move at all but to blink, and just make me think the chicks are soulless dolls or something. Which would be great if this were a tentacle rape anime, but it isn’t.

    Speaking of soulless dolls… The Inori figure looks pretty good, but I’m passing on her myself. Something about her face/mouth just doesn’t look right to me. And this is one case where I can actually pick up a figure based on experience, since I watched the show… and well, she doesn’t have any character so I don’t know why I’d waste the time. >_>

    I really like both the Miku and Milla figures, though. Don’t know what else to say past that, other than I also really like the Evening Call Milla dakimakura cover. And I’m so happy they’re giving Nagisa another reception. 😀

    • Tier says:

      I beat my first playthrough of Daiteikoku today, and I thought it was a lot of fun. I guess some of the criticisms are that it doesn’t have the replayability of Sengoku Rance, you don’t have the number of invasion options as you do in Sengoku Rance, the combat system isn’t as good as Sengoku Rance, and so on. I’d agree with some of them – I thought it was really weird how the game ended if you flubbed one attack – but I really liked the game anyway. I actually think that Sengoku Rance and Daiteikoku have a level of complexity that exceeds a lot of mainstream strategy games and RPGs, particularly when it comes to new game+ options.

      I saw some of the screencaps for the Shining Winds anime and well … I don’t think I’ma be watching it (though maybe I’ll check it out really quick just to see how creepy their eyes are). This seems like a really weak anime season, the only show I think I’m interested in is Sankarea (maybe Queen’s Blade Rebellion, too). Medaka Box seems pretty dumb – I heard it gets crazier later on, but I don’t think I’m interested in waiting it out. I dropped Accel World fifteen minutes into the first episode. I haven’t watched the Cthulhu show yet.

      Yeah, Inori is a pretty bad character; I’m getting her solely because of her looks but I definitely don’t have much good to say about Guilty Crown. I’m still debating whether to write a review of the show.

      • Shashin says:

        I don’t remember it all that well, but I definitely didn’t think it was fair to directly compare the systems of Rance and it. They both definitely have their strengths, and I thoroughly enjoyed playing both of them. I still want to go back to Daiteikoku sooner than later, but the further the translation is, the better. I don’t recall the bit about the game ended if you screwed up an attack though; I know that if you sent the army in without the right amount of stars controlled, you’d get a game over… but I’m pretty sure there was a retreat option there. Or maybe that was only if you didn’t attack all the way or something. I’d have to play it again to know for sure.

        Even though I just said it wasn’t really fair to directly compare Rance and Daiteikoku, I still like to do it regardless, including Daibanchou in the mix. I really liked the combat system of all three, but I think I switch back and forth between Rance and Daibanchou; Daibanchou was fairly similar to Daiteikoku but I want to say the overall territory control was done a bit better. It has been so long since I’ve played any of the games that my memory is a bit fuzzy.

        I do remember the thing I liked most about Daibanchou over the other games though. Though it was really lacking in overall replay-ability, with only two true heroines (and thus two routes), there were a total of 6 that you could unlock during the course of the game (with up to 5 in one playthrough, since the two main heroines were related to the story.) Every couple of turns, during the ending phase, you could choose one of the heroines for an H-scene. You’d eventually level them up, and get special abilities and it would affect the exact ending you received. But the coolest part was that these six ladies got a significant amount of full length (and often varied) scenes. So instead of being more or less locked into one chick for the game, you’d get a good amount of scenes with the other girls if you wanted, too.

        Now that you’re done with your first playthrough, it’s time for the CORE route, right? 😀 That was definitely one of my favorite things about the game and a nice little bonus. I thought it was pretty straightforward and wasn’t too difficult, but apparently a later patch made it incredibly easy by allowing you to repair your ships or something (the biggest gameplay element was that you started out with maybe 30 ships that couldn’t be repaired.)

        I”ll probably give it another episode or two myself, just because when I start watching something I’m usually willing to follow through unless it’s really bad. I haven’t really watched much anime otherwise, though; Guilty Crown and High School DxD were probably the last two shows I’ve watched while they were still airing in maybe a year or two; I think the last season I kept up with stuff was when Ladies vs Butlers! was airing. I have gone back and watched a few shows after they were finished, but not too many; I really enjoyed Horizon and I just watched the first season of Kore wa Zombie desu ka the other day. That was definitely strange and I’m a bit disappointed it wasn’t a bit more ecchi, but I enjoyed the humor throughout.

        I thought about it, but her face just seems off to me. That and I’m now realizing how screwed I am with all the dakimakura covers I want to order and the load of figure preorders I have scheduled for the coming months.

        • Tier says:

          Yeah, it’s game over if you lose an attack; there’s no retreat option. Technically you have to get eight or more victory stars to win, but that usually means needing to decimate the opposing force. You do get a retreat option while defending, though. I thought that was a clumsy game mechanic, but it works pretty well for the way I like to play, which is to turtle in my territory until I have an overwhelmingly large military.

          I think I’m going to play it again normally, though without enacting the Japanization plan, since I didn’t get Scarlett nor did I open up the warp route from Hawaii to Canada during my first run through. I’m curious as to whether some of the CGs I’ve seen come from the CORE route, though; they look pretty cool (Rikori and Adolf have some good ones).

          I haven’t actually ordered a lot of pillowcases since I got my last batch from Yokatta. I still need to preorder Erena (second episode of that show was mildly disappointing, I thought) and I like the Slave Bride one done by High Risk Revolution, and also the one done by the Musumaker artist (whose name escapes my memory at the moment). I’ll probably order one or both of those.

          • Shashin says:

            Ah, the retreat during defending option was probably what I was thinking of. In that case, it’s definitely a bit sloppy but it just means that you’d have to save before every encounter, which could be a bit of a pain for most I guess… but I’m fairly obsessive when it comes to saving. Honestly, I probably had to reload more because I spaced out and sent the Army to attack before I was done attacking elsewhere. >_>

            The main thing I liked about the combat system though was the decisions you had to make. With 3-4 territories to divide your units into, you had to choose between specific bonuses you could get by winning a battle but at the same time you had to make sure you pursued a battle with enough force that you’d come out ahead (and get the battle stars.) There were some points where you could just unload and it didn’t really require much strategic thinking but I found that on other fights I was really skimping on some fights with just enough power to win the engagement overall.

            There are a few things I’d like to do this weekend, but I’m seriously thinking about grabbing either my copy of Rance or Daiteikoku and installing it again. I’ll probably opt for Daiteikoku since I’ve played through all the Rance routes at least once. I did Japanization for my first and only real playthrough and then I did the CORE route. It definitely has some of the best CG in the game, and them becoming decoy ships (with a new and unique admiral portrait) is still one of my favorite parts of the game overall.

            There are a ton that I’d like to preorder right now. Evening Call has a good batch of covers going (I really like the loli Rin), there are several in the sketch stages that can shape up really nicely, and I’m still contemplating if I want a back up of the cakemoon Vocaloid and Dream Club covers (two of my favorites, and both tend to be fairly expensive on YJA.) Then there have been several rare IG/AnkoKoubou covers popping up that I’ve had to throw my hat in. Definitely expensive times for a dakimakura cover collector.

            Yeah, I’d still like both the Erena covers, but I thought the episode was fairly disappointing myself, too. I really liked her sister, but hated that she didn’t expose much skin half the time. There definitely weren’t as many good tentacle scenes, either.

  2. azn0will says:

    DAYUM! A 1/4 scale figure of Ikaros! That’s Huge! Just like my Satellizer El Bridget figure from FREEing(same manufacture).

    That “Kanu Unchou from Ikkitousen” looks great, what scale is she?

    • Tier says:

      Kanu is 1/6 scale; the sculptor seems to like working in that size, most of his recent figures have been 1/6 scale (I think Kureha is the only one of his figures that I own that isn’t 1/6 scale).

  3. BentoLover says:

    A preorder list. Will be looking forward to your views on Blanc and Racing Miku… If you get them…

    Though I noticed something. Pangya Golf for the PSP. Apart from eBay, can I ask where you bought yours from?

    • Tier says:

      I got it from Amazon. If you’re in the US, I think I saw it there for less than $5 brand-new, with free super saver shipping if you toss in another $20 worth of stuff.

  4. Fabienne says:

    Oh Im actually preparing my New preorder post since a few days

    Im wondering if I should be offended by the Retia Adolf figure, but she seems to have no swastika, so the figure should pass german customs without problems,otherwise it would be confiscated XD

    Alisa Amiella from God Eater Burst looks very well so far. I had her illustration on my HDD for some years and I was quite surprised as she appeared as grey figure. Plum left a good impression on me with their Astraea, I hope they’ll put the same effort in Alisa.

    I already ordered this Kanu Unchou, she looks so awesome with her fierce face expression.
    Yeah and also her body looks fantastic my first Ikki Tousen girl. I decided agaiinst the big Nanoha since I prefer the smaller one by Ques q. “I’m going to feel like a pedophile whenever I look at it.” XD Well don’t use the tentacle stand on her and it should be fine.

    Blanc Neige looks gorgeous with her base and all, I wish there will be slightly rosy cheeks as they were on the illustration in the final product. Her face looks a bit cold in these promo shots. Milla Maxwell looks also quite pretty, but something feels not right with her belly it looks so flat around the belly button.

    • Aaron says:

      “Well don’t use the tentacle stand on her and it should be fine.”

      Which means…use the tentacle stand with her. She is 1/4 scale so she will probably be like a normal 1/6 scale.

    • Tier says:

      Haha, yeah, I’m wondering how German customs inspectors would react to seeing Adolf XD Hopefully she can get through, since she’s really cute and, uhh, nothing at all like the guy she’s named after. Heh. Though I guess it’d be pretty hard to convince a customs inspector of that.

      Orchid Seed seems to stay away from cheek blushing, I remember you pointed out that the first bondage Sonico figure lacked that.

      I thought Milla looked perfect but now that you mention her stomach, she seems to look kinda skinny. I’m still greatly looking forward to her, though I’m a bit surprised Alter didn’t go with one of their characteristic action poses for her.

      Haha, I wasn’t even thinking about the way Nanoha would look with the tentacle stand but I’m pretty sure she’s going to have playtime with it. Or is it the other way around?

  5. Phil says:

    I ordered Miku, because I haven’t bought a Miku figure in years. That Saber looks cool, but over $700..ouch. To be honest the resale value would be like twice that.

    • Tier says:

      Yeah, I’m probably gonna hock some stuff to lessen Saber’s impact on my bank balance. I think I’ve got enough photographic equipment that I can let go that’ll cover most of her cost, and I’ve also got a bunch of figures I might put up on eBay. The nice thing about figures is that most of them don’t lose a lot of resale value.

  6. Aka says:

    Not really interested in many of these, which is quite good for my wallet. Even those that I am interested in I wont be buying.

    I have to admit that Adolf is pretty sexy as a blonde little girl. It’s pretty wrong, but I’d saved artwork from the game before I knew, and after finding out I didn’t delete it so I guess I’m not a beacon of morality anyway.

    Milla’s hair looks pretty well done, but those boots are gaudy.

    I look forward to Saber’s introduction to the extremely friendly tentacle stand.

    • Tier says:

      Milla’s got a whole lot of pink and red, which isn’t my favorite color combination. I kinda wish she were wearing high heels partially because they look great but mostly because they rile up everyone who thinks fantasy RPGs should be realistic.

      Saber’s going to have a good time! We’re going to do all the things that the anime should’ve done (it is a good thing so many doujinshi makers feel the same way).

  7. Cantan says:

    Milla is cute and I overcame my usual reticence to order her quite quickly.

    Alisa was certainly a figure I noticed, but there was something about it (think the promo shots I saw made her breasts appear too round and ball like – almost stuck on) that put me off.

    Similarly there is something about Inori I don’t like. I like definition and difference between clothes and skin – there is nothing to suggest that the two are separate in this figure with her top and open chest appearing to be continuations of one another.

    In terms of Kanu, I haven’t bought any figures of her for a long time despite the Daiki Miko being one of my favourite figures. The one figure I have wanted is unfortunately Volks resin kit… and I have no idea about what is involved in preparing and/or painting one of those… I see TH is offering one again… only problem is that I have to buy a car…

    • Cantan says:

      Damn and I nearly forgot this!

    • Tier says:

      I kinda wonder whether Inori’s apparent small size is causing things like that. I’m kinda bothered by her navel, which looks longer than a belly button should.

      Yeah, unfortunately, Volks’s best stuff always seems to be their kits rather than their PVC figures. They used to do prepainted versions of some of their X-brand stuff and some of their Sengoku Rance A-brand figures, but they seem to have shied away from that in recent times.

  8. NegativeZero says:

    Man I never should have come here today. Thanks to you I just finished ordering Alisa, I just can’t resist that big ass knife. and she looks awesome herself. I picked up GEB for PSP from amazon for like $10 couple weeks back but have yet to play it.
    I’m currently watching Shangri-La which is awesome, I plan on finding my Last Exile Dvds and watching those soon as well. Not sure if I’ll pick up Alvis though, she doesn’t scream Murata to me. Recently picked up Headphone Girl too.
    Miku and Inori = preordered.
    A little angry I’ll be missing out on that Volks Bles mentioned by Cantan. Argh!
    And I’ll be looking into Ikaros too now since I love insanely large figures.
    Not sure if I’ll ever be able to stop collecting at this point.

    • Tier says:

      I am glad to be of help! I ought to look for some cheap PSP games, I know there are some nice RPGs for it and I’m just not too moved to buy many console games these days, particularly at the $60 price point.

      I know I’ve been looking at my collection and thinking that two hundred figures is incredibly excessive, but I’m not sure where the end for me is, either. I’ll probably just sell off the ones that I care less about to make room for newer ones.

  9. TomTheCat says:

    Please excuse my ignorance, but where do you get those thumbnail pictures from? Not just these particular ones, but most of the ones you ever used. Some of the facial expressions are highly suggestive (to put it mildly) compared to the featured figures…

    • Tier says:

      They come from Pixiv and Danbooru; they’re fanart pictures so they don’t really have anything to do with the figures, other than being of the same character. I just think it’s kinda funny to see them that way, particularly since not a lot of figure reviewers embrace hentai.

  10. Devastator001 says:

    Definitely Getting
    RaceQueen Miku and Milla Maxwell ^_^
    Reita Adolf – good chance of getting
    Still on the fence on Alisa Amiella

    I agree with you on Ikaros’ Face being off, but i’m guessing it’s the lack of face and hair details for her scale that causes the disconnect when viewing her face. This is especially highlighted if you take in the details of the entire figure.

    • Tier says:

      Yeah, FREEing’s figures seem to lack the sort of detailing you see on figures made by Alter, GSC, and Max Factory. I also think Ikaros’s head looks kinda rectangular; it could just be me, though. I’ll probably wait and see whether a preview shows up on Moeyo, Akibahobby, or the Hobbystock blog.

  11. Aaron says:

    I loved Last Exile as I watched it, but I too got halfway and then lost interest. The last episode I saw was had some guy trying to buy something at an auction. At some point I will try to watch it again, but I would have to start from the beginning and 26 episodes is a large time sink.

    I think the Alvis figure looks good, but I have no interest in it.

    Same goes for Aldof. I like the pose and relative lack of clothing, and really like how the things on her legs compress a little bit, but she has that Fate Testarossa hair and I just don’t like her head.

    I may be one of the few people who actually enjoyed Ikki Tousen for stuff other than the near constant fan service. With that being said I have never watched Dragon Destiny. Kannu was a pretty minor part in Ikki Tousen, if I remember correctly, and I never liked her character or design. The same goes for her figures. I do like Ryofu though.

    I like Nanoha’s character design much better than Fate, but having never seen the anime/manga/etc I have no interest. I think it looks well done though. Even though I don’t care for lolis this figure is interesting to me.

    Can’t wait to see the review on Saber.

    Blanc Neige and Inori: I thought about pre-ordering both of these figures. I like the pose and colors of Inori, but I also think the face looks funny. Maybe the other reason it intriqued me was because of your site and your regular references to Guilty Crown. I also like the pose and colors with Blanc Neige, but I think I like the teasing pose the most. And her smile lets you know that she knows she is being a tease.

    I preordered the Hatsune Miku figure on day one. I have the Figma of this design that I had to buy from YJA. I also love race queen figures even though I have rarely seen any. I only know of the Kotobukiya Rei Ayamani. Even though I will own this figure, I have never been a fan of the illustration that the figure is based off of. I would prefer a different pose, but I understand why GSC did what they did.

    The rest of the figures look great but I don’t know about the series or characters so they don’t really mean anything to me.

    • Tier says:

      I think I stopped at a similar point; I think I remember one of the last episodes I watched had a vanship race. That’s pretty much the last thing I can remember of it. I’ve been contemplating watching it over from the beginning as well; I might do that later, since this anime season doesn’t have a lot to interest me. (Instead of watching anime, I planned on watching some Blu-ray TV shows I had recently bought, like Game of Thrones … except I found out that installing a Blu-ray drive and Blu-ray playback software doesn’t actually mean that I can watch Blu-ray discs.)

      I liked Ikkitousen a lot as well, though I really liked the manga and didn’t watch much of the anime series it spun off. The manga has a much more serious tone and despite the various foibles with its translation, I was pretty sad to see Tokyopop go under because I don’t think anybody is publishing Ikkitousen in the US anymore.

      Ahahaha Guilty Crown … man, I could write a whole post on how I feel about Guilty Crown. Hopefully it’ll happen, though I really don’t want to have to watch even part of it again – it’s the sort of show where you might forget specific plot points or what the characters are like, but you’ll never forget how dumb it is or how much potential was missed by its creators.

  12. Moo says:

    Retia Adolf’s master sculpt is amazing, but I’m going to pass on the figure because of the infamous Kaitendoh quality control (especially the paint job). If it was 40 bucks I would buy it, but I’m not paying 90 bucks for what will likely be a Beach Queen quality figure.

    • Tier says:

      I was pleased with one of their recently-released candy resin figures, but I’m curious as to how good their PVC figures are. I’m basically hoping for something better than Alphamax quality; if they can beat Alphamax, I’ll be satisfied, I think.

      • Moo says:

        How likely is it do you think that they would manage to beat Alphamax quality? I’m willing to take a gamble on the figure if Kaitendoh is getting their act together but it doesn’t seem that way from all the comments I’ve read.

        This figure feels special in the way that it’s a petite girl wearing a painfully tight swimsuit. Usually you see this kind of tightness emphasized on far more voluptuous figures. Her pose and drill hair are both wound up and full of energy. The sculptor really did an amazing job.

        But every time I see her posted I just want to facepalm and ask why it couldn’t have been a better manufacturer.

        • Tier says:

          I am not sure, but that’s a pretty low bar to get over. I don’t have a great deal of familiarity with Kaitendoh’s figures; I own two, one of which is pretty good and the other being not that good, and I don’t actually know anybody else who owns any of their figures, so I’m withholding judgment until I have Adolf and Alvis.

        • Shashin says:

          This is an interesting discussion, considering the one or two Alphamax figures I own have been fairly decent in quality. I only one the one Kaitendoh modified Katja. The figure quality wasn’t too bad, but she doesn’t have any clothes on, so I can’t say how much is the mass produced sculpt and how much is the modified sculpt. I really didn’t like her hair and that was all Kaitedoh, though.

  13. I just can’t get over Inoris face in that figure. It looks fine at some angles but pretty bad on most. I’ll need a pair of beer goggles which work on figures to get over it. Which is a shame cos the rest of figure looks great.
    Shame about the show though. It was fine until halfway and then suddenly, it wanted to be Code Geass!! And Geass (well, R2) was atrocious!!

    And I’ve put a purchase freeze on pretty much everything right now. I need to save some serious scratch to buy the recently announced 1/4 scale T-ELOS from Volks!!!

    • Tier says:

      Aww … I thought she looked pretty XD Though I’ll be honest, I like the anime face designs more than Redjuice’s original designs. I’m kinda hoping Alter or someone does a figure of Inori based off of her anime appearance. Hopefully it’ll be taller than 17 centimeters, too.

      Haha, yeah XD I thought it went off the rails a little earlier – right when that American coach showed up was when I knew the show was going to be terrible. (Though maybe I knew it a little earlier, because I noticed that the creator of Seikon no Qwaser was credited with Guilty Crown’s composition and while I like Seikon no Qwaser, I will fully admit that without the gimmick of tit sucking, it’d be a really, really dumb show).

      It was really cool to see Volks doing a T-elos; I wonder if they’ll do a prepainted version like they did with KOS-MOS? Though I’m still wondering if they’ll ever do one of their 1/4 scale Saber Lily; I could use a 1/4 scale Saber Lily counterpart to stand next to Cobra Kai’s 1/4 scale gangsta lean Saber.

      • The T-ELOS will be a charagumin kit (the first 1/4 scale too!) so it will be colour resin. Painting will make it look better but she should be serviceable with just glue.

        But that makes a painted version very unlikely…

        The Redjuice art for the other characters are great. I really like his original Ayase art! But Inori just looks… off…
        Maybe it was the transition to 3D or something.

  14. nagisa says:

    The inori one could be tempting, but considering my experience on the show, maybe I could resist it. Will look forward to your azone saber in a tentacle stand, I’m sure it would be epic as hell. There are a lot of figures to be released from game material though, and again I am not familiar with them so that could be a good thing. Also, I agree with you about sega being famous for ruining sequels (valkyria chronicles is a perfect exmple of this, and I want a houkago live 2 sequel as well, huhu) but rants aside, Tony Taka is a busy guy this year, although I remind him of Hisashi Hirai. Oh, did you also take a peek on freeing nanoha fortress figure? It looks fantastic, but I am afraid of its size though.

    • Tier says:

      Haha, man, not a lot of people enjoyed Guilty Crown, it seems XD I should definitely write that post.

      I haven’t yet played Valkyria Chronicles – I own the game but not a PS3 (I’ve seen the way some RPG prices skyrocket so I picked up the game cheaply) – but I was dismayed when I saw that the sequels were on the PSP. I guess I shouldn’t be, since I do own a PSP, but I don’t like seeing major franchises get exiled to portable platforms.

      I think I saw the unpainted sculpt for the Nanoha Fortress figure; she’s looking really nice. I don’t actually yet have an adult Nanoha figure; the Gift figure will be the third loli Nanoha figure in my collection, but I like her best as a grown-up so I’m definitely keeping an eye on FREEing’s figure.

  15. jwan1996 says:

    Definitely should write a post for Guilty Crown, I’d be more than glad to see it

    • I found the biggest problem with the show was that they tried to make it very character driven, like Code Geass. But the problem was that the entire cast were completely unlikeable and garnered apathy at best and disdain at worst.

      The ideas behind it were decent enough but they didn’t have enough characters who were likeable to carry it though. All we got were a bunch of whiny brats who refused to take responsibilty for their actions and yet tried to paint themselves as the victims ALL THE TIME!!! Either that or they were vapid and soulless, like Inori. Well, at least they were kinda OK to look at.

  16. Elixir says:

    Milla is great value for money, but I didn’t really care about Xillia. Maid Aegis I’d buy, but not in the 9,000 yen range.

  17. armorknight says:

    Inori is a fuck toy. She doesn’t need personality lol. Just slap her and fuck the shit outta her.

    Guilty crown was terrible aside from her though.

  18. Tier says:

    >> Shashin
    The other thing it means is that you can’t wear down an opponent’s force by raiding, so if you don’t have an all-powerful navy, you have to sit tight before launching an attack. That’s exactly the way I like to play strategy games but I bet there are a lot of people who prefer to harass opponents rather than turtling. (One other criticism I saw was that since you can work out the turn sequence and how much damage each side is going to dish out, you can precisely plan battles to go the way you want them to.)

    I didn’t have to do a whole lot of strategic planning on my first playthrough, I guess. I wanted to get Carol so I set up some defensive forces to stop the Soviets and British from invading me and steamrolled through Gamerica before going back and mopping everyone up. The game got really easy after I researched anti-laser ships (unlike my Sengoku Rance playthrough, where Takeda mauled my army and then the demon army blew me away and forced me to restart).

    The new CG portratis in CORE mode are definitely awesome. I went and played a few turns of it to unlock some CGs; it is too bad this is the only way Rikori is playable. I kinda feel like I should save her in my base instead of having her soak up damage.

    • Shashin says:

      Hmm, I guess it is kinda sucky that it’s an all or nothing system. But really, the gameplay for an eroge is nothing short of fantastic and I have a feeling that people complaining are expecting far too much from the game. That’s not to say that it should be withheld from judgment because it’s an eroge, but I still think the overall gameplay elements are fantastic. I guess the second one is a fairly valid complaint; more of the game is spent planning the battle setup than in the actual battles. But I personally like the planning aspect of it a lot.

      Honestly the thing that disappoints me most about the game is the lack of new game options. The CORE route is definitely one of my favorite bonuses in any of the Alicesoft games, and playing other routes is worth it (though the translation isn’t as far along as I was hoping), but it’s severely lacking in other options. I thought the Sengoku Rance system was great, since it encourages completing various goals during the course of a playthrough and gave tangible rewards for your next. Combing that with the multiple difficulty levels made a real winner… but as far as I can tell, there isn’t more than the default difficulty in Daiteikoku.

      Yeah, the game takes a dive in difficulty as soon as you take Hawaii; I’d say that’s probably the hardest fight in the game, barring monster fights and such. I ended up getting nothing done this weekend because I loaded up Daiteikoku. I completed one playthrough where I guess I got a harem ending. Started again and decided I wanted to go for the true route, but unfortunately I’m hitting the bounds of the translation effort again. I’m actually curious if I’ll be able to do the true route now. I just conquered Gamerica and have captured all the characters I’ve need to there. But the requirement for the route says you need to recruit all of the leaders and Aeris just took out the UHOS territories; I’m not sure if I’d be able to capture Katherine now or not.

      Sengoku Rance can definitely be pretty brutal at times, especially on 5 star difficulty. Though I don’t remember it being all that bad once I grew accustomed to the changes. I think the biggest thing was that it was almost guaranteed that your generals would be killed if their troop count was dropped entirely. I thought that was pretty cheap and it made me reload countless times since I didn’t want anyone to die.

      • Tier says:

        I don’t have enough experience with H-games to know how well Daiteikoku’s gameplay stacks up but I liked it a lot. Hopefully the translation team will continue working on it; it’s not too difficult to understand through machine translation but it’s nice not to have to analyze five or six translation services to glean the meaning of the dialogue.

        Yeah, Sengoku Rance isn’t too bad once you understand the play mechanics; I was referring to my first playthrough where I had no idea what was going on (and the game wasn’t fully translated at the time). After I figured out that getting satisfaction bonuses was really important, it wasn’t too hard, except for the Orochi, who I still haven’t beaten.

        • Shashin says:

          There aren’t many. Short of the terrible Pretty Soldier Wars, the only ones I’ve really played are Eushully and AliceSoft games. Eushully’s Kamidori was just recently translated. I played it and it’s very high quality, but I’d definitely say I prefer AliceSoft’s way of going about things, even if I love the Fire Emblem style of gameplay that Kamidori offers. Big Bang Age (Daibanchou) is very similar to Daiteikoku with a few minor tweaks. There’s a game that just recently came out I want to give a try; I browsed through some of the sample CG and it’s certainly appealing, plus it appears to be a Rance style game, too.

          I don’t know what’s up with the translation effort at the moment. The main translator hasn’t posted on Hongfire in a month. Hopefully he pops back up again soon, because I’d love to keep playing and understand what’s going on (but not enough to use a machine translator for the given downsides.) On the subject of the game though, I decided to solve my UHOS problem the way anyone really should. I’ve been defending while I research and such and I’ll take out the two capitals at the UHOS/Gamerican capitals at the same time. I actually did this just now, but I made the mistake of thinking Moscow was the UHOS capital. >_>

  19. desudesu says:

    >She looks good in the promo photos and I’m looking forward to her, but I’m expecting to be disappointed by this figure’s size.

    Hello! I’m here to make you not want to even think about buying that fig. Take a good look at her. Look at her neck. She has the neck of a giraffe.

  20. jdomingo says:

    Holy wow!
    Alisa Amiella I think is going to be an add on to my very small collection that I own. She is super hot and that massive sword if phenomenal! Her and Kanu is awesome too. I wish that I had the space and money to get all of these awesome figures. I too am partial to Kanu Unchou 1/8 i think by alter, something about her long hair and height that is alluring about her. I have one of her and for a while I had a thing for many of the Ikkitousen characters as I acquired one of Choun Shiryu 1/8 by alter with her eyes closed which took me forever to find. I also have one of Ryomou lolita 1/7 by Orchid Seed which wasnt’ too bad and I was very happy to get.

    It took me a while to get another one that was reasonably priced but finally found one that I like and it was the Needa Shuraki though I don’t know where she is from. The last on that I acquired is the biggest one I own which is the Kiriko Hitori. I check your site often and am only able to admire the beautiful figures that you own. But after seeing these I want more…looks like its time for some saving! Milla Maxwell from Tales of Xillia was another one I’d like to get in addition to Alisa Amiella. But if I don’t get them I will at least be able to see them on this site in the near future

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