It’s time for another review of a figure made by a company I am not at all familiar with. Technically this figure – of Ines from Konami’s Busou Shinki series – isn’t the first Ques Q figure, I’ve bought; I have their Neptune buried somewhere in my closet, I think, and I don’t remember anything about it other than being amused that whoever packed the box put the figure in backwards. I’m a little surprised that doesn’t happen more often. Despite not knowing much about the manufacturer or their track record, it wasn’t too difficult a decision to order this figure, for reasons that should be apparent in the image above. However, this figure did come with a very high price tag, and I felt some trepidation as to whether I would feel that my purchase was worthwhile. Is this figure satisfactory? Well, yes and no – always an annoying thing when one is a collector, to find something that is almost but not quite everything you were hoping for.
An extensive series of action figures comprises the foundation of the Busou Shinki franchise. Unlike some other lines of Japanese toys, I don’t think the Busou Shinki products have gotten a lot of traction overseas, and I’d guess that many people – including myself – first became acquainted with the property through its various media spinoffs, including several video games and a couple of anime shows. Presumably, this figure exists because of the 2012 television anime, which would make it a figure adapted from an anime character adapted from a figure. I watched the first couple of episodes of the anime, partly because of the appealing character designs but mostly because I hoped that it would be similar to Angelic Layer. It may sound strange for me to say this but Angelic Layer is one of my favorite anime series and was largely responsible (along with Noir, Last Exile, and Jin-Roh) in getting me interested in anime again back in the early 2000s. Unfortunately, it wasn’t all that much like Angelic Layer and the only thing I remember of it is that the little girly figures performed housework for the protagonist – certainly not all that compelling. I’m guessing I didn’t miss much by skipping the rest.
That said, the character designs really were quite nice and that’s pretty much the only rationale I need to buy this figure. That and the figure’s overtly provocative pose, that is, but we’ll get to that in a moment. As mentioned, Ines is manufactured by Ques Q (pronounced like “cues cue,” I think). This figure is marked as non-scale, and while I’m usually dismissive of such a listing, I suppose there’s some justification here since this figure is derived from another figure. At any rate, this version of Ines is considerably smaller than I thought it’d be; I’d guess that the figure is about 1/10 scale, and being that Ines is fairly petite to start with, it’s not all that much larger than a Figma. Disappointing, particularly considering this figure’s exorbitant price tag, but what can you do.
Fortunately, Ines comes with some other qualities that at least partially cover up for her lilliputian size. For one, her outfit is quite appealing. She’s wearing a crop top, thigh-high boots, and some rather skimpy panties; I vaguely remember that she was a little more modest in the anime but it’s obvious that the sculptor was going for a naughtier look here. Her boots, gloves, and top receive a glossy black finish which gives her an appropriately futuristic look. The overall black, red, and white color scheme is also attractive, particularly when paired with her red eyes and purple hair.
Like many – if not virtually all – anime series, Busou Shinki’s cast featured a variety of body builds and breast sizes. Ines gets the petite, twintailed, flat-chested look, which is a very common – some might say cliched – archetype. Accordingly, Ines doesn’t offer much for fans of larger racks, but she more than makes up for that lack by the raciness of her pose, in which her back is sharply arched, thrusting her ass outwards in a blatantly sexual manner. The eroticism of her pose is compounded by her spread legs, which practically command the viewer to inspect her crotch and buttocks. It’s certainly one of the best aspects of this figure.
While the Busou Shinki anime – again, like many anime series – has no qualms about appealing to the baser attributes of its audience, it is at its core a mecha girl show, and Ines does come with some type of mecha unit. I barely even noticed it in the promotional photographs, but seeing it in person, it’s actually quite impressive; it’s not that large but it is well-detailed and nicely-constructed. It is obviously mechanical in nature but its humanoid form offers a pointed contrast against Ines’s human form.
Speaking of which, one nice thing about this figure is that Ines is sculpted as a human rather than as a combat doll. I don’t dislike doll joints on dolls or action figures but I’d rather not see them on a static, non-poseable figure, and it’s pleasing that they changed her look to omit them. Presumably that is why this figure is labeled the “Image Model” version.
This figure comes with an instruction sheet which isn’t of much use, but it doesn’t require any assembly. As far as I can tell, the sword just rests precariously under the mecha unit’s hand and Ines just perches on the part where her feet would go if she were wearing her mecha suit. She’s reasonably secure despite not actually being attached to the mecha, but she’s likely to fall off if the entire assembly is jostled or shaken.
Despite the figure’s small stature, it is reasonably detailed. For instance, Ines does not have the helmet hair that afflicts so many larger figures; actually, the spikiness of her locks is one of the elements that provides more personality to this figure.
Another interesting touch is the two wings patterned on her back.
I wasn’t expecting too much in the way of technical execution on Ques Q’s part, but they did a reasonably good job, I think. Paintwork is generally clean, the sculpt doesn’t have any glaring issues, and I didn’t notice any significant defects or problems.
Overall, this is a very nice figure that I like a lot, but it would rank quite higher in my esteem if only it were larger. I understand why they kept the size small – the mecha part is essentially a second figure – and though it was logical to include it with Ines, being that Busou Shinki is as much about the mecha as it is the cute anime characters, I would’ve been okay with them prioritizing the girl instead. But regardless, I’m pleased with this figure, perhaps moreso because the exchange rate has improved so much in the last year, thus making its impressive price tag less of an issue.
For another review of Ines, check out Cerberus’s review at Reflective Boundary. Like him, I didn’t buy the other figure – Lene, or somesuch – but it’s still in stock at several stores and I guess I might change my mind if I think more about it; I’ve still got my tax refund money waiting to be spent.
I’m very happy to se that the price didn’t put you off enough to not buy her. Due to my own lack of funds along with my ever dwindling available space I decided to opt out. Though price and space aside I do have to say that her mech looked terribly like something I could find at a toys r us. It just appeared so plastic if that makes any sense.
This figure is kind of funny in a way. I remember seeing her on amiami for the first time and really liking her. Though through an ever-growing list that seemed to keep getting longer and longer I knew she would be one of those figures I could appreciate, but would be too critical of for not meeting certain criteria.
Also, thanks for name dropping those series, I’m always looking for anime to watch. Angelic Layer’s pictures from a general google search would have made me pass but after watching about half of the first episode I think I’m on board.
Great pictures as always, and you certainly have my appreciation for never shying away from those particular shots that focus onâ€¦ ahem.. areasâ€¦ that some maybe don’t feel comfortable shooting.
Four episodes in and still enjoying it; but, live octopus in the pants punishment still takes the cake.
Haha, yeah, that’s true; despite having gotten into anime through mecha (and despite still being a big fan of the mech-based board game Battletech), I don’t really care too much for the mecha designs in most anime. Ines’s suit looks okay to me but I’m really not qualified to judge, I guess.
Angelic Layer was a really fun show, as I remember it. I sometimes feel a little bit of disdain for the ubiquity of the cheery, hard-working newbie type in anime (very much exemplified by the Kantai Collection anime’s protagonist), but I guess I do like that sort of character. I was always a little disappointed that Hikaru never got a figure of her own, but I guess Angelic Layer predates the figure hobby by a year or two.
Haha, I never put it in this site’s About section, but one of the two major reasons I started this site was to focus on porno figures and these sorts of perv shots (the other, more banal, reason was to get better at photography). Little did I know that porno figures would pretty much become a staple of the hobby a few years after starting this site.
Aww the anime was so cute … and very easy to digest ;D
The Shinki’s were a quite adorable bunch, I liked Ann the most, Ines maybe as second favorite. I’m delighted to see the face of her turned out so nice, even though in the small size. As this was announced I had doubts about QuesQ, but in the meantime they had released some rather nice figures.
I also would say the whole figure has a convincing quality, the contrast between skin and sexy dark oufit is marvelous. Haha the butt is rather prominent in focus considering that the anime wasn’t that ecchi after all ^^ but why not, she looks great, posed like that. It’s sweet how the mini girl climbs in her exo frame. I would only complain about her looking downwards, well on a higher shelf it would probably be ok.
I will have to take your word for it! Maybe I’ll give it another shot, there’s really nothing that interests me this season, unlike last season, which was a good season with Cross Ange and Kantai Collection and Testament of Devil Sister or whatever it was (the Japanese name is escaping me at the moment). I did think it was pretty funny that they went all-in on the sexy factor given that Busou Shinki doesn’t really seem to be too much about fanservice, but I guess they knew it might sell a few more figures XD I probably should find and review their Neptune figure since I guess I’m never going to get the Wing version.
Oh better not, it’s all about cute Shinki’s interacracting with the environment nothing more ^^ This season I actually have some shows I really like, Arslan Senki, Kekkai Sensen or Yamada-kun And The Seven Witches is really fun. Triage is really bad, they skip too much for it’s own good.
Lets say it was a little ecchi ;D
Do the review you would like to do 😉
Yeah, I watched the first episode of Triage X; I expected to like it and I was rather disappointed at how … well, I don’t want to say it was bad, but I wasn’t really entertained, either. I’m not really sure how you can screw up an anime with girls with huge gats, big tits and shiny asses … oh wait, yes I do, you throw in an uber-angsty teenaged male lead. The show’s makers should’ve watched Pulp Fiction for an example of how to deliver a sermon before shooting people.
I’m still prepping my Ines for review over at Tomopop. Having said that I DID buy Lene as well and one thing which grabbed me (and annoyed) was how that the “little Extras” that Ques Q added to the figures actually detracted from the overall figure itself! There’s no need at all for the extra bases and some little extras on Lene made things more than a little annoying.
I still find the price tags hard to swallow though. These 2 are actually more expensive than the original GK when they were on sale. How is that even possible??
Yeah, I have to admit, I really prefer figures that I can just take out of the box and photograph and display without having to worry about removing or adding clothes or accessories or widgets and wadgets. Most of the time I just toss the extra stuff back in the box without looking at it.
The price tags were definitely exorbitant and I guess they could get away with it, but it’s still part of a disturbing trend of figure prices getting a lot higher in the last year or two. I noticed that a lot fewer figures seem to hit the bargain bin now than a year or so ago; I wonder if there’s a reason for that.
I think the makers have caught onto the the fact that not all collectors will pay above a certain threshold so they’re getting better at producing a more limited number of figures which will more likely sell out.
I can’t really see these 2 sisters selling out if they did a standard run. They would probably be bargain basement fodder for sure. Gotta wonder what the margins were like for figures like these, especially since most of the Ques Q stuff are basically mass produced PVC versions of popular GK.
Yeah, that certainly seems plausible. I suppose they might have also issued some sort of edict to retailers.
It seems that the two Ques Q figures did hit the bargain bin in the last week, though the discount is only a few thousand yen. I’m guessing the production runs for both figures weren’t that high, certainly not compared to, say, a GSC Vocaloid or Kantai Collection figure. Sometimes I wonder how new figures companies (and I guess Ques Q is only a few years old) get into the game.
I picked up both Inez and Lene a week after they were released. I waited for 3rd party photo reviews of the final product since QuesQ’s Purple Heart left me with a bitter taste. Seems like the company has improved quite a bit since that debacle.
I too thought the two were a bit small at first, but their petiteness quickly grew on me. Most 1/10’s aren’t nearly as detailed, and they look stunning climbing on their mechs.
One thing of note, my Inez sits quite securely on her mech suit. She even hangs on when I turn the whole thing upside down. The sword, on the other hand, is nowhere near as secure.
Haha, now I think I should review that figure, particularly since the Wing version is impossible to find and the Alter version still seems to be far off in the future.
Interesting, maybe I’m not positioning her correctly, then. I probably should just clear out some shelf space and re-box some of my less-liked figures so that I can put her in a more permanent location, I guess.
It’s great to see that her butt isn’t so heavy tilted towards the b’donk as I feared. She was on my watch list for a while but the production photos eventually convinced me that her assets overpowered the initial impression of badassery that had originally caught my eye.
I’m not sure if I’m relieved by your shoot or not. She’s either not as doughy as she was initially set to be or you’ve portray her in a much more flattering light [the latter of which is my guess] but that price still gets me. Unlike most of your shoots which push me to tracking down a lass for my own collection, I’ll have to enjoy this one vicariously through your review unless I can manage to find her for a non-premium price.
On a completely different tangent, I’m curious if you noticed the production photos for Kotobukiya’s pending Kurumi [Date A Live] figure. It seems to happen every once in a long while but I quite welcome the change in style when it’s done right.
Yeah, honestly, while I like this figure, I wouldn’t really recommend it unless you’ve got money to burn and you don’t mind getting a smaller-than-expected figure. I’m not sure how many collectors value size but for me, it’s a hugely important parameter.
I did notice that Kotobukiya and a couple of other manufacturers have kinda started doing more dramatic shots for their figures. They had one maybe about a year ago – I think of one of the Bakemonogatari characters – which had crazy nuclear rim lighting, which was pretty interesting, since almost every other figure uses the evenly-lit drop-and-pop style. I still kinda wonder if any employees from any of the major figure companies have ever come across this site.