akinoame: (Delenn: Perfect Joy)
Another bad day. Mood improved from watching Dino Force Brave. It's very rushed, and character development is lacking, and they're really pushing a teamship when they haven't really built anything, but I can forgive it considering its 12-minute episode format. But they need to speed up the transformations or something.

Also, this moment.

Image spam )
akinoame: (Bonds)
Last time, on picspam!

So Day 3 was the day I decided to play around with the attachments. First up was the feet, the Condor attachments for the Rider Kick. The side view shows the detailing on the talons, which are nice and articulated too. Front view, which I promise looks better under good light and less flash reflection.

Pull off the foot to attach. And while I was looking at the feet, I decided to check the soles, and like the Ryuki and Knight Figuarts, emblem!

Talon attached, and a nice comparison shot of the talon and foot.

Remember how I said that the emblem on the chest was removable? There's a transparent red version, in pieces, for a power-up, I suppose. This is how it looks while getting attached and all put together.

Next, the TaJa Spinner, and this is where I have to put in warnings. It is a pain in the ass. Kind of. See, it's a little tricky to remove, if you're terrified of breaking anything. Then when you put it back on, like after putting in the Medals (only 6 shown there, since I forgot whether it was a Ptery or a Rexy as 7--Ptery), you REALLY have to make sure it's on tight so it doesn't come off and you lose all the Medals. Like I did. I did eventually find them all, and as a note, there ARE the markings for which comes first, second, and third, and it's a lot easier telling which Medal is which that way.

Day 4 consisted entirely of two things: Putting the Medals back in, and wrestling with the hands. This was not the nice hand system of the Orphnochs that I loved. No. These were Figuarts hands, which I think you probably know my feelings on. It took me the entire time to put the damn thing on, hurting myself quite a few times by missing and jabbing myself with those fucking hands. So I only got one picture. Ankh doesn't appreciate what I go through.

Day 5, however, I was ready to put everything else together. After the hands, I anticipated problems with the wings, and that's basically what I got. They're bulky. It's hard to get them in place. You have to be careful.

I removed the port so the wing harness would fit in. The port was ALSO a pain in the ass to remove. All of my aggravation about Knight having a port that kept popping off his wrist to the point I had to super-glue it? Opposite problem here. I was very worried I'd break this port with how much I had to pull on it.

No pictures of the process of putting ON the wings and getting the harness hooked into the Tamashii stand (which is absolutely necessary because those wings are HEAVY and it was hell trying to get everything together because it was about the same weight as the figure), because let's face it, it was several minutes of me swearing and muttering, "Giant flaming assbird," as I've said. But it all worked out in the end, and I have him up and posed. Second view, in case the first is a little blurry.

Funny story, though? His wings are so goddamn big that I have to rearrange my display. He's blocking everything. Right behind him is my Faiz set, so Blaster Form unfortunately has his gun against Lost Blaze's back. Oops. Well, if he falls off my display, I know who's to blame.
akinoame: (Ankh: Pumpkin)
Previously!

So the next day, I was a little less terrified to open Lost Blaze up and take some pictures of his details.

First off, a shot of the emblem on his chest and the Medals in the Driver. Both are removable, but we'll get to the emblem in another post. Here is the Driver opened up, with the Medals inside--I decided to replace the default Taka with the cracked Taka because I am horrible. Ta-da! I recommend that if you do try to pick up the Medals and change them around, use tweezers. They are tiny little buggers and slide a lot, but I have long nails, so I was able to get them without too much problem. If you don't have long enough nails (or, honestly, nails that are too long), it might be harder.

I forgot to re-position this photo, but I'm honestly too tired to bother with it now. Here is a shot of the TaJa Spinner, the shield on his arm that he loads with Medals for Giga Scan. It is also removable so you can put in Medals, but again, not today's post.

A shot of the feet, and the articulation in the toes. I always love how these toys have better range of movement in the toes than actual humans do. But anyway, warning about those spikes on his legs--they will catch on EVERYTHING.

His back, with the tail feathers. I really love how they went all-out on the feather detailing for this form. Also, that red and silver thing on his back? Is a port, a la Ryuki Figuarts, to attach the wings. But that'll be the last post. Because it was the biggest pain.

Another shot of the back, with a better view of the port.

Ankh! His hair and arm. I love it.

Closeup on Assbird's hair.

Cracked Medal in Driver.
akinoame: (Eiji)
So after a string of very bad days, I finally caved and bought something I'd been wanting for a while, the SIC TaJaDor "Lost Blaze" combo. I'm not usually crazy about the SIC figures, but they do their monsters well (as seen with my Orphnochs). And when they had the idea to what-if TaJaDor a second time (their original take was the usual, more monstrous-looking Rider style I'm not always fond of), they knocked it out of the park.

In the final episode of OOO, Ankh provides his last, cracked Medal to Eiji so he can transform into TaJaDor to fight Maki one last time, preventing him from giving up the last of his humanity by transforming into a Greeed. When I get around to reviewing OOO, I'll gush about that battle, but suffice to say, canon's version of TaJaDor was standard. SIC thought, "Hmm, Ankh as TaJaDor? There's money to be made!" And yeah, this is an exclusive, so it's expensive, but I found it on sale at Big Bad Toy Store (note that it is still over $100). I figured, "You know, I allow myself one big purchase a year with my tax returns, and I had a really terrible month year week--why the hell not?"

So this is the box. It was bigger than I expected, but there are two reasons for that, which I'll get to. The side of the box is evil, however, and features the broken Medal. Not cool, box.

So I opened it up, wondering just why it would be such a bulky box. And I found this. Right. Giant staging effects. That's why this box is Ryuki and Dragredder levels of bulky. At least I feel like I'm getting what I paid for. It's also really complex, so the directions are two pages and have large pictures, so the people who don't read any Japanese and are panicking at the sight of this (aka me) can take a deep breath.

So I took him out, and as you can see, Ankh. Very Ankh. And I like it. This is more along the lines of what I expect from something called Super Imaginative Chogokin. Not how many sharp edges and overly large shoulderpads we can put on things, but how far can we go with an idea. And he's big. Here's a comparison. Here he is with Daguva, an utterly amazing Figuarts that I love, and he's taller. Compare to the less expensive but taller vinyl Kuuga Rising Ultimate, and they're roughly the same size.

However, it took me a few days to get the whole photoset done, partly because I have been working my ass off on a number of things lately, and partly because I saw this and had horrible flashbacks to the fear when I saw the Ryuki and Knight Advent Cards. The Medals. A set of 9 PuToTyra to use in the TaJa Spinner (even though it can only take 7, as it did in the show), three Cell Medals, and three really painful Medals: the cracked Taka Core, and the two broken halves left at the end of the series. Ow. Fuck you, you flaming assbird. That hurt. I guess this means I'm going to have to pick up a Figuarts TaJaDor or TaToBa or something to represent Eiji.

More pictures as I upload them and have time to comment.
akinoame: (Karone)
So both Karone and Kendrix got brand new icons for use at their respective games. Unfortunately, I can't possibly use ALL of them, and there are some takes that I wanted to do alt versions of, so I figured I'd share all of the new icons with everybody.
























To be honest, I'll probably have to continue working on Karone's icons, if only because most of her appearances in those last several episodes were out in the bright, California sun, often shooting in the desert. So things are a little more washed out than usual. But she was lower-priority because I foresee more play out of Kendrix, to be honest, and Kendrix had outright awful icons ripped from terrible video. Karone I'd had years to work on.

You're free to take them, but I do ask that you give credit.
akinoame: (Kayura sword)
Image heavy )
akinoame: (Sword)
So I've been wanting the Figuarts for either Gavan or Gavan Type-G for a while, as in "since I saw Gokaiger VS Gavan." Because I got myself addicted to the five episodes of Gavan that Bunny Hat and Midnight Crew Subs had before they both had to quit, and I was definitely going to get the Retsu version, but then Geki grew on me in the movie and I really liked the way his suit looked as a Figuarts, so I decided on the latter.

Geki's box is pretty nice, and when you open it up, he's got a fair amount of accessories, including an alternate head (for the lit-up eyes common for the Gavans) and an effect version of the Laser Blade alongside the normal version. You know, for when you're bisecting monsters to make them explode.

He's got a chrome finish and blue detailing underneath darker plastic/resin that show up really look awesome in the right light/camera flash. What I like is that he doesn't really have the shoulder problems that a lot of my Kamen Riders and Sentai have, where it dislocates--the joint fits better, closer to a Ryuki series Figuarts. His leg can become dislocated, but unlike Hiromu's legs of doom, it's a much easier fix, and it pops back into place nicely. The articulation is fantastic, neither too loose nor too tight, and holy crap his hips really move.

A back view of the detailing and the detailing on one of his arms. I was pleased to see that the head came off and popped on easier than, say, Revoltech Al, though it can still be a pain to get it in place. The lit-up head looks fantastic with the detailing.

Since I didn't have a stand ready and didn't have a chance to look up a good pose, I did him powering up the Laser Blade. And here he is hanging out with Lost Galaxy and Aqualad.
akinoame: (My hand is a cow!)
A review is coming soon, though I need to type up 3 episodes' worth of notes and do the fourth episode. What can I say? I've been sick for two weeks.

But a picspam, while somewhat time-consuming, is slightly less draining and easier to put together.

Now, count up your crimes! )

I'm not Alice, and this isn't Wonderland. )

Now to see if I can stop my Den-O stuff from falling down.
akinoame: (Rocket)
Hey, speaking of Greg Weisman shows, I promise that I'm trying to work on W.I.T.C.H. I've just been super-busy lately. And addicted to Magiranger. But honestly, it's mostly super-busy. I'm going to work on the notes of at least one (hopefully two) episodes this weekend. I've just had projects I needed to work on for a while.

So. There's a comic shop in my mall. The only comics I really read are mostly online (or Avatar The Last Airbender), so I never had a reason to go in. But last week, I'd needed to head to the mall (because I had to rush to find my mom a birthday present), and I figured why not check it out. They had some cool collectables, and among them, a Mattel Young Justice Aqualad.

Needless to say, I didn't end up getting my mom's gift at the mall like I'd planned.

Cut for images )
akinoame: (Transmorphers)
So, I love Lost Galaxy. A lot more than I anticipated when I first reviewed the series. And I'm especially fond of its Pink Rangers, Kendrix and Karone. There's not much more I can say about them other than they're awesome, and really? That's enough, isn't it?

Unfortunately, I'm not fond of the costume design enough to justify buying a Figuarts of them when they come out Magna Defender is another story. And even more unfortunately, Lost Galaxy got the short end of the stick when it came to toy designs, and it happened to be the ugly stick. If you look for old action figures, you're going to notice a major problem: the girls are all built with boy models. Understandable with Maya, as the Yellow Gingaman was originally a boy. But unforgiveable with Kendrix/Karone. And yes, the problem extends to the original Japanese toys too. Poor Saya.

But while I prowled ebay in search of...say, a DVD from the massive Power Rangers Zordon era release where maybe someone only bought it for MMPR or something...I found jeramiebacca2012 who had something intriguing. For $20 altogether, a Pink Galaxy Ranger with Jet Jammer.

She's actually fairly well articulated, and in Lights of Orion mode (sans Quasar Saber, oddly). Mine's a used toy, so there's some wear-and-tear, and the Jet Jammer is missing a couple of weapons (a missile and a blaster), but that's fine. In terms of detail, she's surprisingly decent, particularly on the Lights of Orion armor. But she's no Figuarts--she doesn't have quite as much articulation, and she's got screws sticking out of her back. Also, her ass is well-sculpted for some reason. This is for kids, right?

The Jet Jammer is beautiful. Again, I'm missing a blaster and one missile, so here's a side without the missile and here's the side with a missile. The thrusters look great, and not only does the bottom have wheels that let you scoot it along a surface, but it also has incredible detail in that bottom. Somebody loved this thing. Unfortunately, she doesn't fit very well into the Jet Jammer--this has to do with the articulation problem. Even the back of the box shows off the problem--while Leo and some of the others are sitting fine, Maya and Kendrix/Karone aren't, and have to lean. I have the same problem with Gokai Pink at her Gokai Darin, to be honest.

Well, if it's an articulation problem, I'd better call in a stunt double. As you can see, she's the same height as Kaoru, but with a very different build. Apparently, in America, female Rangers have bigger boobs. Around this point, I pretty much decided this was probably Karone I was dealing with (because she, Kaoru, and Lauren would have some stories to tell) and settled on Kendrix being with that little gashapon set I bought a while ago. Karone's hands were able to loosely hold the Shinkenmaru. No luck with Rekka Daizantou still, though. NOTHING can hold that monstrocity. I think it'd even defeat Daguva.

As a stunt driver, Kaoru actually fit really well in the Jet Jammer. I must remember this for any future Figuarts purchases. Her gripping hands even worked better on the controls than Karone's did. In fact, she fit so well that I managed to get a shot of the interior--you can see where Karone's legs are supposed to go. It's sad, but this beautifully detailed Jet Jammer really was designed for a toy line that wouldn't be created for about a decade. It's a Figuarts toy. If you have one of these, save up and get yourself a Figuarts to go in it--Gingaman, Shinkenger, anything. I might even throw a Kamen Rider in there at some point!

Anyway, here are Karone and Kaoru ready to fight another Legend War or something. And because back in the day, I loved how inaccurate the box descriptions of the series were, here's Bandai's description of Lost Galaxy. It's actually fairly accurate, though it still was on the "years in the future" thing that got retconned. Also, I always have to laugh whenever they say Magna Defender is helping them. Mike, yes. Magna? Not unless Mike guilt-tripped him into it.
akinoame: (Julie/Yuto)
I've had a backlog of Figuarts I've been making my way through, and tops on the list were Zeronos Altair Form and Ryuki Survive. I'd always planned on getting them together, since everything with Christmas made me have to put off Zeronos, and I only bought Knight Survive because he was a major impulse buy. But I never planned on buying Red Buster, and had tried to talk myself out of it several times. Unfortunately, I stopped talking myself out of it.

And here we go

Saisho ni itte oku. Ore wa ka-na-ri tsuyoi! )

Busters, ready? Go! )

I transform into a Rider to protect people )

My three new Figuarts
Ryuki shelf in my room with the Survives center stage
Zeronos Altair posing with NEW Den-O Strike and NEW Den-O Vega
Red Buster with my gashapons

Later, as I was working on my W.I.T.C.H. review, Shinji Survive managed to fall off my shelf and take out Chibi Knight and Chibi Zolda while he was at it. He went on the stand afterward, with his new pose looking a little melancholy. But I guess that's appropriate, when he first used this form to fight his best friend.

Also, Megaforce and Young Justice were awesome. FYI.
akinoame: (With)
Well, 2013 was off to a wonderful start when we lost water in the morning due to a burst pipe. Dad fixed it, and we got water back maybe an hour or so ago?

But enough of bad omens. Let me show off the stuff I spend too much money for!

First off, a little while ago I bought a set of Gingaman/Lost Galaxy gashapon figures off eBay from powerrangermorpher2008, who I bought Ryuki gashapons from once upon a time. In fact, I got them in on Christmas Eve. Now, with the Ryuki ones, they came in an envelope and were all bent out of shape--Knight's sword and Ouja's staff. This time, however, my figures came in a box and were much better protected--which is great because this is all the Lost Galaxy I plan to buy until they release a Magna Defender/Bull Black/Black Knight Figuarts (I'm not crazy enough about the other designs to get their Figuarts if they're ever released, and the action figures are fugly).

The problem with them was that they didn't stand up on their own very well. Well, Maya and Damon did, and Leo half the time (yes, I use their American names, even though Yellow's lacking certain anatomical features). But a Tamashii stand and my handy-dandy Krazy Glue pen solved that problem in a hurry. This also led to me solving my problem with Knight Survive's fucking cape. Ren, why am I forever taking Krazy Glue to your figures?

But enough of that. I also picked up Kuuga Amazing Mighty Form. Yes, he's overly expensive as a Tamashii Web Exclusive and seriously lacking in accessories why are there gripping hands when he doesn't have weapons? Also, no thumbs up? Seriously? But he's my favorite design out of all of the Kuuga forms. I love the way they took the red Rising Mighty Form and made it look utterly beautiful in black and gold--are you listening to me, Ryuga?. I thought Ultimate was a little overkill, with Rising Ultimate amazingly overkill, but the simple design of Amazing looked fantastic.

Headwise, he looks great, and I've got no complaints about the scuplt or coloring. Admittedly, compared to the downright gorgeous (and pants-wettingly expensive), Medicom wins, but I honestly cannot afford a $300-400 investment on a single figure. But he looks great anyway, with great detail on the armor. I like that it's a matte black on the armor portion while the "suit" is a slicker black, because it really makes the gold stand out. And yes, I love the Grongi/Linto inscriptions, even if I have no idea what they say. Unfortunately, like the Faiz set, his shoulder pieces splay out weirdly and his shoulder dislocates (also a problem with my NEW Den-O figures and the Rising Dragon and Rising Pegasus Kuugas). And while his leg sculpt is beautiful, he's got the sticklike ankles I hated on the other Kuugas. Also, what disappointed me about the feet is a discovery I made with Knight Survive. The Ryuki series Figuarts have their deck symbol inscribed on the soles of their feet. I don't see character symbols on the feet of any of my other Figuarts, though they do have soles that look like shoes. And I feel like it's a huge missed opportunity with Kuuga. The guy burns an emblem into people when he Rider Kicks them. Take advantage of the detail! But he does have nice details on his hands too, and the symbol is apparently different from the other Mightys. Plus, he looks great ready to battle Daguva or when posing with the rest of my Kuuga set on top of my TV.

Oh, I also got sick of that terrible ass-stand for Al, so I decided to try something different. Unfortunately, I'm horrible. It's going to cost a lot more than five cents for Lucy to take care of the Elrics' problems.
akinoame: (Team Rider)
I know, it's not yet time for the changeover. But I figured I'd do a preview of it.

Read more... )
akinoame: (Dream)
I recently got Nadeshiko, so that meant picspam, along with a proper picspam for Al (sorry, Yuji, but there's not much more to be said on the SIC Oprhnochs other than they're very nice-looking but difficult to articulate due to high detail).

So let's start with Al. Here's the hole in his butt that lets that horrible stand through. As you can see, his loincloth also is articulated, I guess for action poses. Articulation on this figure is not great. I actually have to say it's worse than Wolf Orphnoch. See, with Wolfumi, there was the potential for movement, but it was impeded by the detail work. Al's joints are graduated, based on some kind of gear system rather than a smooth ball-and-socket that limits the amount of movement you can make. The most articulate point on him is his chest, oddly enough. He's so stiff that I can't even bring his hands together in the all-important alchemy clap FMA is known for (alongside transmutation circles, the Philosopher's Stone, a depressing and beloved 2003 anime, a faster-paced and lighter-hearted new anime following more closely to the manga, and short protagonists with shorter tempers).

Al, naturally, comes with a host of accessories, including this stand and effect...thing. The effect is supposed to be for him running like hell, but I figured it should also be usable for, you know, ALCHEMY. Didn't work out too well, and I still don't know what's up with the ugly orange stand. The effect doesn't plug into it or anything. There is an alternate head, and there's an extendable ball-and-socket joint functioning as the neck, but it's even more of a pain than the Figuarts to try to attach things to. Still, it does reveal a nice detail: the blood seal anchoring Al's soul to the armor.

Overall on Revoltech Al? Not worth the money. It's pretty, definitely. But you can't do much with it, which is half the fun of these kinds of figures.

On the exact opposite end of the spectrum, we have Nadeshiko. I have a thing for female Riders--well, female heroes in general, especially in a male-dominated medium like superheroes, and Kamen Rider is particularly a sausage fest. Nadeshiko was featured in the Kamen Rider Fourze portion of Movie Wars MEGAMAX, and there was an explanation given why she looked exactly like Fourze, but I don't feel like spoiling the movie. Like the Ryuki cast, she comes with her own Tamashii stand, which is more adorable than it should be. Her accessories are a little sparse, but she didn't have a ton of Astro Switches to work with. No, this does not mean I'm going to buy the Fourze modules and go nuts. Articulation is a world away from Al, including Faiz-like shoulderpads and the details above her feet. BE CAREFUL, though: those details fall off very easily if you're trying to change the position of her feet. Detailing is great, like the almost catlike "ears" on her helmet, or the ribbed silver neck, or the sailor fuku jetpack.

Her included hands are the initial fists, open hands, an outstretched hand for the all-important Fourze handshake, a Rocket module, and a pair of clasped hands that honestly pisses me off because while she's cute, she's not this yamato nadeshiko archetype it implies. She broke a Dustard's neck in the middle of battle. Ain't nothing moe about her. The Rocket module is a pain in the ass to attach, possibly more than working with Kaoru's Rekka Daizantou, if only because you have to detach the whole arm and fit on a different piece before it's "Rocket on."

Another complaint I have is the belt. It's a repainted Fourze belt. You can clearly see the spots for four switches. And you know how I pointed out on Shinji and Ren that their belts moved? Well, Nadeshiko's is way too big. It's not fitted to her at all. I had to angle it myself to get the patented Nadeshiko belt-tilt. I really hope this isn't a sign of what'll come when they get to a Kamen Rider Femme Figuarts. Just make the henshin belt fit the female figures, okay? Even if you have to cut it down a bit. That's all I ask.
akinoame: (Karone/Leo)
So I owe you guys a lot of stuff. I managed to finish "To The 10th Power," but FFN was giving me problems so I couldn't post. I'll try to get that ready ASAP. I also got some toys and really didn't have a chance to picspam them due to hurting my wrist. Also, this happened. Tropical Storm Debby. We got really lucky--there was no damage, and the street drained fast once the rain stopped, but my brother was still a dumbass and went out for a swim in it.

Starting off, I did these wallpapers for my new laptop:
1
2

Figuarts Gokai Pink, from Toy Arena/liqdeal on ebay:
On shelf
Set
Standing
At Gokai Darin
Ranger Key, set (Pink Ranger figure form, I think)
Ranger Key (key form) in Mobirates 1
And 2

Next, my SkyShift Disc Launcher, from smmtoys on ebay:
With instructions
Side 1 detail: just stickers. Would have prefered if it could also function as a morpher and make some sounds, but it's still fun.
Top view
Side 2 view: why to buy it. Hand crank...
It's a disc launcher!
Crank, then pull the trigger to launch
Trigger is depressed until cranked. Mine's a little scratched up because the packaging was impossible to remove without scissors.
Another view

And crazy toy ads from Power Rangers RPM!
1 2 3 4 5 6
The back was a poster, so I put it on my closet door.

Here's Decade!Ryuki with a Keyblade. I'd ordered an Oathkeeper keychain from surrel on ebay, but I managed to break it at work. Have since gotten myself a new style one, but since this one happened to be the right size for Tatsumi here, I figured why not?

And finally, I have added Horse Orphnoch and Alphonse Elric to my collection. Horse Orphnoch is another SIC, so see my review of the Wolf Orphnoch for the features--it's pretty much the same, only he's got a sword and a special hand for his shield. And Al is a Revoltech Yamaguchi, which essentially has the same bits and pieces and articulation as a Figuarts. He also comes with an alternative head for flailface, but I prefer this look. Also, he comes with his own stand...that sticks in his butt. Nice.
akinoame: (Ariel)
Read more... )
akinoame: (R-Kotaro)
Long story short, I got a new camera )

Cutting it off for now because I have to go to bed. I'll cover the Faiz Figuarts next.
akinoame: (Sunshine)
First off, a couple of pics that I've been meaning to post and forgot about for some time. This is a cupcake I got some months back that I'm dying to see Publix make again. It's a Cookie Monster! Or as close as they can get to it without having to pay Sesame Workshop! And it was yummy. And I got this Princess Jasmine figure from a local jewelry shop in my mall that closed its doors last week. My parents had gone there for years to replace the batteries in their watches, and it was sad to see the place go after so long.

Well, that melancholy note aside, onto the Figuarts. The first to arrive was Knight, whom I ordered from Anime King on ebay. I highly recommend them. Very good prices, excellent selection, and shipping is reasonable. It helps too that they ship from California, so if you're in the U.S., you don't have as long a wait. And no customs, which I'll get to when I discuss Shinken Red.

As a note ahead of time, I apologize profusely for the quality of the photos, since my camera's on the old side, and for the glare, since my hands are ridiculously white.

Cut for length. And a joke about length, if you know what I mean )

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Akino Ame

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