Gacha games have, for better or worse, exploded in popularity in recent years, and Mihoyo’s critically-acclaimed title Genshin Impact has played no small role in the growth of this genre. However, Genshin Impact’s predecessor is noteworthy in its own right, having sustained a large measure of success since its release in 2016. Today we’ll be taking a look at Raiden Mei, one of the primary characters in Honkai Impact. Many gamers may now know her principally for having inspired the design of Genshin’s Raiden Shogun, but she, like the series she comes from, has earned its own consideration.
That said, I haven’t played Honkai Impact – even though all I do these days is play gacha games – mainly due to its age and my lack of desire to spend money to catch up. However, several other games in the gacha genre take their design cues from Honkai, from Punishing Gray Raven to Action Taimanin, so I’m somewhat familiar with how it plays, and I have a few friends who enjoy the game. From what I understand, Mei is one of the main characters of Honkai Impact, and she comes across as a stoic, outwardly-cold warrior who nonetheless cares deeply for her friends, particularly Kiana Kaslana, one of the other major characters from the series.
This figure is manufactured by Mihoyo; as a Chinese company, this means that their products aren’t listed on MyFigureCollection, which I think is a silly policy. Regardless, they make a number of figures from gacha games and that means I’m going to be buying a lot of their products. Mei is sculpted in 1/8 scale and is about 20 centimeters in height from the top of the base. This version is the cheaper, standard version of the figure; a more expensive version included a more substantial backdrop, including a large pair of arms and hands, but I wasn’t interested enough in that to spend the additional money. This version is titled “Herrscher of Thunder Lament of the Fallen Standard Version”, which might be the longest version descriptor I’ve ever seen for a figure.
Perhaps the most striking element of this figure is the design of Mei’s outfit. Her outfit is colored white and black with eye-catching red accents. Her dress is sleek and feminine, hugging her body closely, while her arms are sheathed in glossy armor.
It’s not easy to discern what her dress actually looks like; it looks as if it’s made of multiple discrete panels rather than one cohesive garment. At the same time, while Mei’s body is mostly covered, enough is exposed to tantalize.
Another prominent feature are her oni horns. I’ve not been a huge fan of horns (or animal ears or tails) on anime girls, but my opinion is undergoing some evolution, and I think they add an interesting visual touch to Mei’s design.
Mei’s weapon is as stylized and seemingly impractical as her outfit but realism is certainly not something that need be emphasized here.
Certainly her high-heeled boots are not the most ideal footwear for combat, but they do look very attractive.
A gigantic sword comprises the centerpiece of this figure’s backdrop. It fastens to the stand that Mei is actually sitting on, and in practice I found the fit to be a little less secure than I would have liked. Another note, the base is absolutely huge, in part because of the way Mei’s hair splays out. I would’ve preferred that the base be smaller than it is, since I am desperately out of display space.
Mei’s expression is entirely neutral; she conveys no emotion whatsoever. While her gaze doesn’t necessarily lend insight as to her mood or what she’s thinking, I think it does impart some understanding as to what sort of character she is.
Despite not being all that familiar with the Honkai Impact world, I really like this figure a lot; Mei looks particularly striking, with her impassive stare, sexy outfit, and impressive backdrop. She’s a great-looking character and this figure certainly does her justice. If I had to find fault with something, I wish that this figure had been 1/7 scale rather than 1/8, which would keep her in line with most of the other figures from gacha games that are in my collection.
While Honkai Impact is a little too old for me to get interested in it, and though I keep telling myself that I ought to try Genshin Impact, I think my first foray into the Mihoyo-verse will be with the upcoming Honkai Star Rail, which I’m very much looking forward to. Like Genshin Impact, Star Rail features characters patterned on Honkai Impact, though I don’t think a character based off of Mei has yet been revealed. Having watched some of the early beta, I think my favorite character right now is Natasha, but there’s certainly time for me to change my mind.