The Proportions of Anime Figures
By proportions, I mean above all that given to the head relative to the body. Manga and cartoons tend to swell their characters’ heads with respect to reality, and I also prefer this figurine ration, rather than a more realistic reproduction, usually adopted by video game characters.
I like the square faces of the Puella Magi Magica Madoka figurines while some people hate their shape. They seem, moreover, larger than the statuettes, more respectful of the real proportions, although of equal size. on the other hand, I also appreciate any some models, where the proportions are harmonious, such as the figure below of Ririchiyo Shirakiin of Inu x Boku SS
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It makes sense to choose a protagonist you like or at least not to hate. What I look after is if the figure fits the character well. One of the models at Alphamax of Kuroneko in Oreimo is well made, but baffling representing the girl with big slender legs.
The criterion can also apply to the outfit, which some publishers want sexy but that does not necessarily stick to the image of the character.
Same thing for the face, which sometimes does not look at all that you can see in the manga or anime of origin.
Finally, if the license is successful, you can be much more selective before ordering. I was starting by taking Otherwise of Sword Art Online II output by Kotobukia but ultimately, I think at least expect the version proposed by Aquamarine. Conversely, for Oregairu, I will probably have to settle for Yukino’s fig prize.
There are also times, including consulting classifieds, where I did not know the character especially and in this case, it allows us to focus on the other criteria by ignoring the resemblance or repellent points of the image original.
What About Anime Figure Pose?
In general, sculptors or illustrations that serve as models, choose living poses, see too much for some. There is, however, a practical side, where some movements are not ideal to see the figure. The Saber Extra from Kotobukiya is an example, with a pose that has class but prevents a clear view of the face of the heroine.
Point of view pure personal taste, I do not like versions with winks and I often spend my turn even if the rest of the figurine suits me.
It is also necessary to look at a minimum of how the figurine is maintained. Designers are not necessarily masters of the physical mechanics and this can simply break because of too hard constraints on certain parts. This is seen with the figures that have been out for some time, found on the used market and it is difficult to find a copy intact. This can be a fixation that has farted at the level of feet but also an accessory. In this case, if you still want to buy, it is recommended to study a minimum figurine at the reception and alleviate the famous constraints when possible.
Having seen the buying guide for anime figures. Let’s see what are the best anime figures out there in the market
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1 Anime Figures | Gashapons
Gashapons are small, inexpensive figures obtained from machines. In fact, the word itself is an onomatopoeia: “gasha” for the sound we make by turning the wheel of the machine and “pon” for the sound of the premium falling into the reservoir.
The main distributors are Kaiyodo, Bandai and Tomy. They are probably the most falsified figures. It is very rare to find genuine gashapons in stores like eBay. However, speaking in person, being cheap representations of characters that are dear to us and because they do not have great detail or quality, there is no great stigma in not having the original version.
2 Anime Figures | Trading Figures
Almost all manufacturers have a strand of trading figures, so I will not mention names. These are often sold in sets of six that include a secret figure. The trading figures have more detail than the gashapons and encourage the collector to buy since most of them are sold through the blind pick system – that is, sealed boxes and the buyer does not know which figure comes in. It is also very easy and common to find counterfeit versions of them.
The trading also works much like the exchanges trading cards. Being cheap and appealing is easy to exchange them for an equal value with friends, thus managing to complete collections.
3 Anime Figures | Prize Figures
The field of prize figures is extremely vast and has been increasing over time. They are cheap alternatives to the static figures to the scale of the great companies, and an increase in quality of detail has been seen. Among the main manufacturers, we have Sega, Taito and, instead of prominent, Banpresto. Banpresto also has a distinction between the various types of prize figures, the best quality being Ichiban Kuji. How does the prize system work in Japan? It’s called a lottery system.. A person goes to the brand bank and buys an X-value password: lower values for smaller prizes such as keyrings, higher values for scaled figures, and Ichiban Kuji. Each letter is associated with a letter. A lottery is then made and the handwriting has an associated prize. However, it is very easy to find these figures in secondhand stores like Mandarake, Jungle or Rakuten. Prices can vary between 7.50 euros and 75.80 euros depending on the type of figure and rarity of it.
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4 Anime Figures | Articulated Figures:
As some manufacturers have their own lines of articulated figures, I will divide this sector into parts. Let’s start with Bandai.
a) SH Figuarts, Bandai: They are articulated figures quite simple, without great detail. Human figures have been improving. Personally, I consider them to be of low quality, but they have a good relation between quality and price. If they do not want to spend a lot of money, they like to change the poses of their figures and do not care about their fragility, so SH is the best option for you. However, there is no great variety at the series level. When Bandai attaches itself to a particular line, it explores it to full power. We then have a huge roll of SH of Dragon Ball Z and Power Rangers and the recent line of Sailor Moon also continues to grow. But there are exceptions.
b) Figma, Max Factory (Good Smile Company)
With better sculpture work, more robust and, progressively, with improvements at the level of articulation. Also, they are not expensive: pre-order prices vary between 22,7o euros and 37.90 euros, roughly the same as the HS’s catalog Max Factory is much more varied than the Bandai. They are slightly larger than HS, and, as I said earlier, attention to detail is more thorough. It is also better at the level of finishes.
They are also more interesting in terms of accessories. It was recently announced a Figma from Saitama, from One Punch Man. Needless to say, I’m quite curious to see how they’re going to do it. Although not articulated, Max Factory launched, I think last year, the branch figFIX: are static figures with the same scale and quality as an articulated Figma. The great advantage is in the price.
c) Revoltech, Kaiyodo : I have a love/hate relationship with Revoltech, so I relied on fan reviews to write this small segment. The strengths are the catalog, the price, the accessories, the two lines Fraülein and Queen’s Blade and the fact that they have a great variety of wick. The weaknesses are the poor quality of the first human figures – which has been improving – the quality of some joints and the finishes are of inferior quality to the above-mentioned marks. The only Revoltech I came into contact with was that of Vash, Trigun, and loved the amount of joints in the coat. But then … later they launched the Kenshin and my faith in them reduced significantly. Here are some examples, including the two I mentioned.
d) PlayArts Kai, Square-Enix: The advantages of Play Arts are size, sturdiness, attention to detail and painting, which as a rule have no defects. However, he occasionally fails to take great shots in the water with some pieces, the engineering of the joints is not the best and they lack accessories. The Play Arts already make a little bridge with what are known as high-end collectibles, of which I’ll speak a little later.
e) Nendoroids, Good Smile Company: Possibly the best known in this section. The Nendoroids – name comes from the nickname of the sculptor of the first copies, Nendoron – are super-deformed representations of characters, generally enhancing their most adorable appearance. The manufacture of Nendoroids has changed slightly over time: today they come with fewer faceplates than in the past, but the quality of joints has improved considerably and already brings replacement joints in case of an accident. They also good value for money, although some may reach ridiculously high values in second-hand stores. It always depends, of course, on popularity and rarity. Within the Nendoroids there are, as I mentioned above, the Nendoroid Petit, sets of trading figures. The difference is in size, have fewer joints than standard ones and few or no attachments.
5 Anime Figures | Static Figures / Statues / PVC:
My favorite. The scale varies a lot according to the model, of course, and they have the disadvantage of not being able to change the pose, but at the level of sculpture, detail, painting, and finishing, for me, there is no better. Of course, there are those who disagree. These are, for me, the true art form within this hobby. Among the manufacturers I highlight Alter, Good Smile Company, MegaHouse, Kotobukiya and, recently, Stronger who, in partnership with Aniplex +, have released very beautiful – and exclusive things. The Good Smile Company is divided into several branches, such as the Griffon Enterprises (which focuses mainly on Touhou Project figures ), Max Factory and Gift. The megahouse and Alter have both male lines, respectively the GEM and Altair. The megahouse also has a line exclusively dedicated to One Piece: a POP: Portrait of Pirates. Do not feel confused!
6 Anime Figures | High End Collectibles:
As its name implies, they are figures of luxury where all the elements unite to create a total perfection. They are much more expensive, and when they are second-hand prices are usually astronomical. Among the hottest names, we have Hot Toys, Medicom Toys with the line Real Action Heroes, Sentinel and Sideshow.