Despite its age, Lineage II has been a popular source of inspiration for figure manufacturers. Thus far, Good Smile Company, Orchid Seed, and Max Factory have made figures of its characters. That’s gratifying to see, as Lineage II has some very attractive character designs. It’s not atypical in that respect; this may be over-generalizing, but I’ve long thought that Korean MMOs – a group that also includes TERA, Aion, Blade & Soul, and Scarlet Blade Online – have some of the best character designs in video games. The Kamael is the latest such figure to be released, and it’s the third Lineage figure to be produced by Max Factory; we’ll be looking at them in reverse order.
I played Lineage II very briefly, a few years after it was released. I mildly enjoyed it, but I wasn’t thrilled that world PVP constituted a substantial element of its gameplay, and after having played EverQuest for a couple of years, I wasn’t too enthusiastic about playing another hardcore, unforgiving MMORPG. I’m not sure if Lineage II is still that way but back when I played, it definitely belonged to the older generation of MMOs, with long travel times, penalties for death, and lengthy grinds to level up and accumulate wealth. Recent MMOs have tended to move away from that paradigm, which I think is all to the good, although even I occasionally reminisce about the old days when men were men and it took days of playing just to gain a bubble (20% of a level) of experience in EQ.
The Kamael were introduced to Lineage long after I stopped playing, and I know nothing about them or how they fit into the Lineage world, so we’ll skip over the usual character biography. At any rate, this Kamael is nameless, just like Max Factory’s previous Elf and Dark Elf figures. Also like those earlier two figures, the Kamael is a good-sized figure, being sculpted in 1/7 scale. She stands about 22.5 centimeters in height to the top of her head and about 25 centimeters in overall height, including her weapon.
One of the things I like about many Korean role-playing games is that the aesthetics of the character designs are typically somewhere between the Japanese anime and Western style. Such is the case with Lineage II; most of the character models – aside from the dwarves – are relatively realistic and yet still noticeably stylized, with the female characters sporting long, slender limbs, slightly enlarged eyes, narrow waists and wide hips.
Interestingly, the Max Factory’s figures generally go for a more realistic treatment; their Elf figure’s face had a conspicuously Asian look, for example. This figure of the Kamael is no exception; whereas the source artwork makes her appear fairly youthful, the figure gives her smaller, narrower eyes, which make her look quite a bit older. She also has very sharply angled cheeks, giving her face a pinched look and making her expression seem a little more severe.
Perhaps the most striking aspect of the Kamael’s design is her single wing. It is a separate piece that slots into a socket in her back. It’s quite heavy but doesn’t unbalance the figure. Such a large protrusion might arouse concerns of leaning or eventual peg-snapping, but happily the Kamael has two pegs for each foot, and one on each side is made of metal, which should hopefully be stiff and durable enough to keep her upright.
The wing is very pretty and quite detailed, though it’s made of a glossy plastic that doesn’t look anything like feathers. Nevertheless, its effect is apparent; its angelic appearance presents a vivid contrast against the Kamael’s darker, almost demonic features.
For me, though, the most eye-catching aspect of this figure is the design of her armor. Like many other Korean MMOs, Lineage II’s female characters tend to dress in abbreviated suits of armor. Accordingly, the Kamael is wearing some sort of platemail bustier, thigh-high, high-heeled boots, and a high-cut thong. Obviously, it all looks amazing. As with the rest of her, the detailing in her clothing is superb, and the dark, smoky color of her armor effectively complements the lighter tones of her hair and her wing.
Her armor also shows off the sexiness of her body to maximum effect. In particular, her back and stomach are particularly nice to look at. Curiously, while the Elf and Dark Elf figures had removable parts that provided a less-obstructed view of the buttocks of the respective characters, the Kamael seems to possess no such feature; the train that covers her rear seems to be firmly attached to the figure.
The Kamael carries a curious weapon, which appears to be some sort of firearm. Guns generally aren’t the most elegant type of arm, at least not compared to a sword (particularly a Japanese-style sword) or a bow, but this weapon still looks quite classy.
And so does the Kamael, despite her skimpy armor. A large part of that comes from her wing, admittedly, being that wings are big draws in anime character design. She’s a very distinctive figure, being modeled in a more realistic manner than one might expect, and I’m happy that Max Factory did such a great job with her; she’s a fine addition to a superb lineup of figures.
(And as a parting note, one wonders if they’ll make a figure of the human character; Good Smile company did one a while back, of course, but it seems like human characters aren’t nearly as popular as elves – and the loli-type characters – in these sorts of games.)