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.

At any rate, the update schedule really was far from ideal in this past year, mostly due to a shift in circumstances in my day job. I’m not going to apologize for that, being that I think the extended break has been helpful in recalibrating some of the priorities in my life. I’ll simply say that I’d like to get back to doing a review around once a week or so, and while I’ve said in the past that I had thought about doing less ambitious reviews in the interest of rolling them out faster, I do kinda miss building sets, which I haven’t done in quite some time.

In this past year, this site received 446,326 visits from 241,496 visitors, resulting in 2,093,494 pageviews. That’s not actually all that much lower than the previous year, despite the dearth of updates. The site also passed 10,000,000 total pageviews sometime this past year, which is pretty cool.

One thing I do regret is not putting out more tutorial-type posts. I’ve heard from a few people who would like more shot breakdowns; I usually save those for the more elaborate shoots but I’m thinking of doing a few for the less technically-sophisticated sessions; those might be more helpful since they don’t rely on some fancy backdrop to impress (and thereby divert attention from everything else). And I still really want to do the “My Photos Suck and I Don’t Know Why” post that I’ve been thinking about for years now. (And I also really, really need to review gangsta lean Saber this year. So many things to do, so … well, okay, there’s quite a bit of time, it’s just the will is weak.)

Thanks to everyone for visiting, and hopefully this next year is more of everything that this site is about; more reviews, more tentacle stand pictures, and more pictures of a certain executive doll (I’ve said in the post that I’ve been overusing that particular thing, but 2016 is coming up really, really fast.)

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24 Responses to Year Six Retrospective

  1. Mike C says:

    Congrats, mate! Always a pleasure to see new posts here. 🙂

    Take care. Cheers! ^_^

  2. Wieselhead says:

    Oh six years, that is really cool, thats especially remarkable since other figure blogs that started back then are not active anymore, well not everyone is suited to do this stuff for longer.
    Your blog is quite the ikon out there, righly ^^

    The limited amount of updates recently actually worried me a bit, but you don’t sound like you lost interest in this stuff fortunately, it’s great to have you around as fellow blogger 😉

    It’s also understandable that you can’t have a constant pace of posts forever without a kind of break. “My Photos Suck and I Don’t Know Why” lol thats a funny way to put this

    • Tier says:

      Yeah, a lot of sites have come and gone. I’m rather surprised I’m still doing this myself; six years is longer than I’ve kept up most hobbies, particularly one as esoteric as this.

      Haha, yeah, I feel pretty bad about the lack of content XD A large part of that is due to an alteration in my work schedule last year, which happened to also coincide with me joining a raid group in World of Warcraft. Both of those things really clobbered my spare time and my energy; every weekday that I come home, I’m usually really tired and don’t really feel inclined to do a shoot, and then I spend the weekends playing video games and relaxing.

  3. Steve Chen says:

    You’re only human but please don’t stop posting pics. Once the interest dies down, so does the site. Don’t forget the tentacles hahahahaha

    • Tier says:

      I have too many ideas to stop taking pictures XD Yeah, I need to remember to use the tentacles. I completely forgot them with the 1/4 scale Sena figure a while back so I made sure to use them in the favorite figures post.

  4. bostonBrandon says:

    Keep up the great work Tier! I’ve been enjoying both your pictures as well as your writing since first discovering your page. I’ll continue to look forward to future posts if only to live vicariously through your reviews of figures that I wanted but could not afford.

    • Tier says:

      Thanks for visiting and for the kind words! Man, going through the archives for me just now is like going back to a different time, even though most of these posts were written not all that long ago.

  5. Phil says:

    I was just about to say keep the president! He is the unofficial mascot of the site!
    But 6 years, wow. When I got into figures in 2008, I didn’t visit this site, I stayed on AMI-AMI, Tsukiboard (haven’t been there in years) and Foo-Bar-Baz.
    Once I checked this site out I never went back. I stopped figure collecting altogether early 2013, but I still visit this site 🙂

    A note on metrics? Do you have a greatest hits list of reviews? I remember the Mikuru one being especially hilarious, as well as a bunch of native entries. It would be cool to see which reviews drive the most traffic.

    • Tier says:

      Yeah, I really can’t think of anything to replace him, even after 2016. Maybe I’ll just keep him on in an emeritus role. I really miss Foo-Bar-Baz, though there are a few Japanese websites like Cutanews and Akibaphotography that do a nice job with reviews and event coverage.

      Well, I’m sure you can guess which reviews get the most traffic and I’m sure it won’t be a surprise to anyone: it’s porno figure reviews. Here are the most popular pages for the last 365 days:

      And for all time:

      Yeah, the Yukino Hongou figure (the Kowaku no Toki girl who made love to a bull) is the most popular figure review on this site. I have no idea why people are so interested in Giga Pulse stuff; it makes no sense to me. People are also apparently interested in pillowcases, though I don’t know if that’s due to their weirdness or due to actual interest.

      • TomTheCat says:

        Well, I have six Giga Pulse figures (Really, that many? O_O) Their awkward poses and/or situations may appeal to a certain audience, but apart from that they’re indeed not very desirable. However, your writing in that particular post was truly brilliant. You need to do that again sometime 😀

  6. Aya says:

    Congrats :D, nothing last forever, but this blog last longer than most which I used too visit regularly 🙂 , I really love the wild fantasy you put on those review, yeah 2016 come very soon… but still another year we can see Mr president 😛 maybe you could make your own character next a custom 1/6 modelled after yourself maybe ahahaha

    • Tier says:

      Thank you for visiting and commenting XD Ha, that would be a sad-ass doll … actually, it would look somewhat like that scrub protagonist from Saenai Heroine no Sodatekata, I look sorta like him … well, back when I was younger and about thirty pounds lighter, anyway.

  7. Aaron says:

    Congrats on 6 years Tier!

  8. icelava says:

    I do not see the need for apology; we’re not paying you money for services.

    You are responsible for your own life and owe it to yourself to make decisions on what is the “correct” path to venture.

    I appreciate and thank you for the photography lessons; they give me insights that would have otherwise taken me long time to figure out.

    • Tier says:

      Sweet, back to video games I go! XD Hehe. To be honest, part of the apology is to myself, since I haven’t made as much progress in this hobby as I would have liked. I still see pictures in my head that I don’t think I can take in real life, and that really bugs me.

  9. Tsunami3k says:

    Six years is quite the achievement. I’m glad you continue to enjoy sharing your hybrid hobby with the world. I’m stoked to hear that you’re gearing up for some more shot breakdowns for which I can only hope are accompanied by a return of some suitably neat diorama creations.

    Your site stats are amazing. I’m pretty sure my humble SmugMug gallery measures in the hundreds vs. your millions. I guess it’s a little apples and oranges give that you provide full reviews and so much more (that and Google indexing bots seem to largely ignore SmugMug content no matter how laden with relevant metadata) but clearly your efforts are appreciated by a very large number of people. That’s pretty cool.

    I’m really looking forward to seeing what fruit your plans bear in the coming year.

    • Tier says:

      Thanks very much XD Yeah, I’d like to do more of this, whether the background is some sort of one-off diorama specifically built for the shoot, or a sheet of painted foamboard. I still remember that I said I’d do a post on some of the backgrounds I use, many years ago …

      As much as I’d like to think that my improving photography abilities have drawn people to this site, I know very well why the site stats are relatively high XD It’s kinda funny since back when I started this site, I was pretty sure nobody would visit it because I made it a goal to photograph more explicit figures. I was pretty wrong about that, and as it turned out, explicit figures have become really commonplace.

  10. Aniki120 says:

    And I’ve been following the site for three of them. Six years is pretty awesome, congratulations! I love your shots, I use them for my phone wallpaper occasionally, especially that Alter Aigis figure awhile back, since she’s my favourite character ever.

    • Tier says:

      Thanks very much XD And I’m very happy to hear that, especially about Aigis, since as I recall, I was pretty confounded about how I wanted to photograph her (you can tell when I don’t have great ideas when I use wildly differing photographic styles for a single figure).

  11. nuo2x2 says:

    so it has been six years already?
    six years of me checking on any crazy shenanigans, great reviews, and pure awesomeness from this website…
    at time like this, makes me want to browse your web to the early post again, heheh

    all in all, congrats Tier!! this is quite an achievement!
    not so many toys blog around anymore (just look at mine), especially within this caliber…
    all the best for you mate!!

    • Tier says:

      Thanks very much! Yep, six years … it really doesn’t feel like six years and at the same time, it kinda feels like I’ve been doing this my whole life. And uhh, man … I can’t stand looking at the early stuff on this site XD I glance through it and I’m like, “Geez, what was I thinking?”

      Haha, yeah, it seems like a lot of sites have shut down, or slowed down … this one not excepted, of course. On the other hand, I’m hopeful that this site has been influential with some of the newer sites that have popped up. That’d be kinda neat, since this site owes a ton to Happysoda and Heisei Democracy.

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