Good Smile Company - Akemi Homura

Homura Hey peeps, how have you been?

Did everyone have a lovely summer? I sure did running around traveling here and there both for a nice long vacation and sadly business trips. Even after returning I ended being busy most weekends leaving almost no time to take photos.

Luckily for me things seem to have mellowed up now that we have entered autumn and got a chance to sit down for nice quality time with my camera and the very spiffy looking Akemi Homura from Good Smile Company.

Homura

Does everyone still remember Puella Magi Madoka Magica? Can't you believe it has already been half a decade since it first aired? Thinking about it seems a bit crazy for me, since this is a show that I would consider recent. I'm slowly realizing that a lot of "recent" shows I have watched are not recent at all anymore.

Homura

During those five years it seems Shaft among others seem to have hit it big with the franchise. There is so many different spin off materials that one can go check out now. There is all other those different manga like Oriko and Kazumi and some rather interesting what if stories like Homura's Revenge. Although with Homura's time traveling everything can become part of the canon I suppose.

There is even a plethora of games both official and fan made, my favorite is the doujin game Grief Syndrome.

Homura

Of course once can not forget the movie compilations that added a bit of extra bits here and there which is a nice way to revisit the show and its characters.

Then there is the sequel movie, Rebellion. Yes that movie...

Homura

On one hand that movie did somethings that I have been craving the whole time I watched the show. Among the those the one I thing I wanted to see the most was probably having all the girls work together as team.

The movie not only introduced us to a nice opening battle with all the girls present it even gave us a very cool and over the top transformation sequence for the whole quintet. It even gave us a true united front with the final battle to save Homura and escape the labyrinth.

Homura

That itch was definitely scratched for me. I was just happy to be able to revisit this world and it's characters. After all, the bittersweet ending of the show did end things open ended enough for a sequel some day.

Homura

Alas, then the last act of the movie occurred and suddenly all those good feelings I had were thrown out the window. I had suspected all the trauma Homura had gone through probably caused some severe issues with her mental and emotional health but I was not even close to how much. Thus when she abruptly took matters into her own hands and saw the resulting events I could just stare dumbfounded at the screen in disbelief.

Homura

In retrospect I should have known better, after all it still Urobuchi writing, can't have those good endings!

Homura

I was one of the many that had become smitten with Homura when the original show aired. I always liked her attitude, who doesn't like an aloof, cool beauty after all?

What attracted me to her was her determination to try to change the horrible events that could occur. If nothing else I can say Homura tried, sadly for her it seems everything was stacked against her. It seems that everything that could go wrong for her did, despite her impressive showing.

Homura

I always felt that such horrible sacrifices made the ending that much more rewarding. After all, Madoka was able to save every magical girl from their tragic fate thanks to Homura's efforts. While she might be separated from Madoka she would join her eventually when her time was up.

Homura

I found Homura's development interesting, comparing just Moemura to Homura in the show proper and later in the movie it's easy to tell how her character evolves. What bothered me is how the movie handled her character growth, want to take Homura down the path of a villain? That's fair game, but to just abruptly do so by twisting her character and simply throwing away the well crafted conclusion of the show is not.

Homura

This is where my mixed feelings come in, I like Homura. While I might not like seeing her make the journey from hero to villain, I like the bigger focus given to her in the movie. She is the true protagonist, name of the franchise aside, after all. I don't like that in doing so Shaft and Urobuchi decided to leave things halfway done.

Homura

Will she remain the Devil to Madoka's Goddess? Will the girls accept her new world or will they rebel against the world as Homura did? Will Homura and Madoka every be together happily? Who knows.

I suppose this is just a result of the stakeholders of the franchise wanting to push something out rather than wait for a proper sequel.

Homura

This is what really bothers me, it feels like this is just the beginning of a new story rather than a conclusion. Judging from how things are going, it might be a story we never get to see.

It seems like the only new things we get is merchandise and at least on that side things are going really well. Just look at all those really nice looking Madogatari cross overs.

Homura

Years ago I bought Gift's rendition of Homura sculpted by the someone divisive Toda Satoshi. I like it, I like it quite a bit. I think it is a very well made and stylish version of Homura.

However, as several people pointed out to me, this style is different from the original character designs. True enough I do agree that Gift's version is Homura as seen through Toda Satoshi rather than "normal" Homura.

Homura

Sadly for me the other options available where a bit disappointing, GSC's original was just painfully "meh". There is just something that looks off about the Aniplex versions that I could never shake off. The others were garage kits that are simply outside my means.

All I wanted was a figure of Homura reflecting Ume Aoki's original designs. Now half a decade after the show ended and a couple after the last movie I finally got what I wanted courtesy of Good Smile Company.

Homura

This rendition of Homura is essentially a perfect adaptation of the illustration and Ume Aoki's style. One has to look no further than Homura's lovely face, from the slight blush to the detailed crosshatched shading in her eyes this is definitely her style.

Homura

While a fairly simple figure GSC didn't really skimp out on the details such as Homura's soul gem, mostly hidden by her sleeve or the delicate pink nails on her slim fingers.

Homura

Homura continues to practice proper gun safety as before, this time not only does not have her finger on the trigger her gun is also pointing away from others as per the illustration. Good job Homura! Of course the actual handgun itself looks quite nice with all the nice details sculpted to precision.

Homura

For the base GSC really couldn't go any simpler, a translucent circular base in purple. On the upside the actual peg is a metal piece rather than the typical PVC, this greatly serves to ease my mind when I think of a single peg supporting the figure.

Homura

Homura's hair looks great over all, the individual strands great adding to sense of motion along with her clothes. The only problem is the rather noticeable seam line along the top of her head, fairly easy to see at a glance.

Homura

While Homura might be a bit obscured in the original illustration GSC managed to translate it into a figure quite well.

I feel the poses of the girls in the illustration are a bit awkward if you really think about it but they do look really nice from certain angles. Some of which I would not have really considered if I couldn't simply take the figure and look at her from various directions.

Homura

My biggest complain about this figure has to be her size. Yes, I know Homura is not a tall girl but for a 1/8th scale this figure is super tiny. Perhaps it is a result of her pose with a low profile giving the illusion of such. I don't own the Madoka from the same set so I can't really compare how it measures up.

Homura

I'm quite satisfied with this figure, GSC did an excellent job and I now have almost exactly what I wanted from a Homura figure. If there is anything left it might be a bit more fire power. May be a nice Devil Homura to match their Goddess Madoka?

I suppose I should just sit and wait warmly, after all it did take half a decade to get this figure.

Good Smile Company - Yazawa Nico Picnic Girl

Nico Sup guys! We are now well into spring aren't we?

The trees and flowers are blooming, the grass is a vibrant green, beautiful blue skies. Perfect time to spend some time outdoors with the No. 1 Idol in the Universe with the aptly themed Yazawa Nico Picnic Girl version from Good Smile Company.

Are you guys ready?

Nico-Nico-Ni! Nico-Nico-Ni your heart! Yazawa Nico will put a smile on your face!

Nico

Uwaahh.... no matter how many times I read or hear that phrase I still find it kinda gross. It's okay if you are gross every now and then Nico, I still like you!

Nico's grossness aside, it's been some time since I gotten a Love Live scaled figure. I've been trying to hold back a bit and painfully skipped on Alter's Eli and their upcoming Nozomi, doubly hard after having a first hand experience on how nice Alter Love Live figures are with their very lovely Maki. Maki was so nice in fact that she singlehandedly got me back into taking photos and a writing posts again.

Nico

After Maki I was looking forward to seeing the other girls. I was quite pleased with Eli and that figure showing all her nice charms. Nozomi in her stage outfit just looks dazzling. I was a looking forward to Nico only to be tad disappointed, while I think the figure itself is amazing I not a big fan of her Christmas looking outfit.

Quite luckily for my wallet I was able to pass on up on Alter's renditions. However, then came Good Smile Company prancing along with their energetic rendition of Nico, I couldn't say no this time and thus I bled more money for the sake of idols.

Nico

Nico came at a great time to cheer me up though. After all, only a month ago u's split up after the conclusion of the Last Live. An event I sadly couldn't attend even though I had a lottery ticket from the movie. Heck, who am I kidding knowing my luck with Japanese lotteries I wouldn't have won anyways.

Alas, I will need to wait for the eventual blu rays of the event to enjoy it.

 Nico

The thought that I won't be able enjoy the antics of u's both in anime and real life saddens me bit. It all feels a bit foreign for me, the idea that u's would disband with the different actresses moving on. While I understand that they probably don't want to be known only for their work with the Love Live franchise why not do both?

Nico

When I compare them to Idolm@ster which has been going strong for more than a decade now all the different members of the various groups seems to be doing fine with their individual works coming together for new Im@s media and live performances.

I probably shouldn't mind too much, after all I'm sure they will probably make cameos on Love Live! Sunshine!! whenever that airs. Plus they gotta do a reunion tour at some point right? Surely they won't pass up on a collaboration show with Aquors either!

Nico

Until such things occur I will continue my enjoyment through the world of figures such as this very lovely Nico. Good Smile Company sure has delivered on that front with their very much bouncy and bubbly version.

Nico

Nico lives up to her namesake and delivers a shining, vibrant smile. I like smiling girls and this is definitely one of my favorites just a bit under someone who tries her best all the time. Although this makes me cynically think it's just Nico doing her usual doubled faced antics...

It's ok, that's one of her charming points!

Nico

Nico's slim petite charm get's shown up quite nicely with her legs! I mean she is nowhere near Eli's shapely long legs but not bad at all in my opinion. Good Smile Company really did pull some magic to make Nico's legs look so long and pretty.

Nico

However, that doesn't compare to how delicious her tushie looks. Just the way Nico is pushing out her hips makes is very alluring doesn't it?

Although this Picnic Girl version is a simple figure Good Smile Company did not skimp on the craftsmanship. Details such as Nico's sunglasses are well done, the glossy texture allows them to reflect the surroundings definitely giving it that realistic look and feel.

Nico

Although even that doesn't compare to Nico's tummy that looks as flat and smooth as her chest. Once again looking at such a charming navel makes me wanna play with it just like in that one show with a stony cat.

Nico

My favorite aspect of the figure is her pose. Just by looking at the figure I hear Nico's voice in my head and hear her well known catch phrase and feel my heart warm up... and then kinda feel grossed out like usual.

The amount of energy captured in this pose is just amazing. The flow of the twintails and the individual strands, the way her jacket and blouse flutter in the wind all done with exquisite attention to detail adding to that illusion of movement.

Nico

I'm really liking the work Good Smile Company has done with Nico, I have no complains about the figure itself. The sculpting, the paint work, the likeness, everything just perfect.

The one very slight negative comment I have would be her base that has Nico's name written on it. It comes in a font color lacking any contrast against the background and makes it nearly impossible to see properly much less photograph it.

Nico

I sure hope to see the other girls get this treatment as well,  after all Nico was not the only girl fans would love to go on a picnic with. More figures to show everyone's favorite idol and more of her Nico-nii~ Nico Nico Smile would also be very welcomed by me!

Nico

In fact, I already got the Birthday version on order and can't wait to receive it. Alas, if only I was made of money I would have ordered the whole set along with Nico! While this release has horrible timing for me I also got my eyes on Freeing's version, surely the typical delays can make things work out right?

I might be sad about the girls parting but it sure looks like figures are gonna fill that void.

Nico

I hope these photos have sent a Nico Nico Smile to everyone's hearts as they sure have done with me while I took them.

Until next time, Nico Nico Nii~

Good Smile Company - Kiss-shot Acerola-orion Heart-under-blade

Kiss-shot Sup guys! Can't believe it's spring already, this year is just flying so fast! I'm more than ready for the warmer months coming up ahead though.

One of the things I was looking forward to this spring was the screening of the first part of the Kizumonogatari film from the good folks at Shaft. The main reason I was anxiously awaiting was to see the super cool Kiss-shot Acerola-orion Heart-under-blade. While she was on for a criminally short amount of time on screen Good Smile Company has provided me with an easier way to admire her.

Kiss-shot

That said though as short as it might have been the scene where she was featured more prominently is probably the best scene from the film in my opinion. It had such a strong impression in fact that I just threw away my plans for this figure and started anew. While I pictured a dark, foreboding, tense atmosphere the movie went a bit in opposite direction. It sure was tense and foreboding but the imagery was actually quite bright and bloody.

It was quite lucky for me that the movie was able to inspire this reaction. I had actually already attempted to take photos before of this figure but I was very unsatisfied with the results. Now though I had the needed motivation and ideas to re-shoot Kiss-shot.

Kiss-shot

Aside from the nice dose of inspiration from Kizumonogatari it was great to finally be able to watch Araragi's and Shinobu's origin story. From the very first episode of Bakemonogatari we had been shown small glimpses and allusions to it all the way to the latest Owarimonogatari. It's one of those things that I just kept wanting to see more and more as new tidbits were revealed.

Kiss-shot

Quite recently I got a chance to do so with the English release of the novel and with it another thing I have been wanting to experience read one of the original novels. Ultimately I ended up not doing so, I wanted to experience the movie for the first time with no bias from the novel. The same way I had experiencing the franchise up until now.

Kiss-shot

Once I watch the second part I will do so and experience this series it its more literary form. Sometime in the latter half of the year anyways.

As just as Shaft teased with the last line of the movie we will have to wait for the rest of the good stuff until then. Sadly I will looking forward to doing so a bit less than for the first part. While I really enjoyed watching Kizumonogatari on the big screen I can't say the same about watching it with a large group of people.

Kiss-shot

Perhaps it's all because I'm used to watching shows while relaxing at home quietly enjoying my time. Perhaps the crowd reactions distracted me. Perhaps it was because the guy next to me had a loud obnoxious laugh, would laugh at every little thing and would slap his leg while doing so disturbing me greatly in the crowded theater.

Yeah, it was definitively that guy.

Kiss-shot

Overall it was still a reasonably good first experience for this kind of thing and glad I finally experienced it. I have had terrible luck when it comes to anime showings on the big screen. A surprising amount of them are during weekdays making it hard for me to attend during the work week or as with the Love Live! movie, I end up traveling out of town or with a prior commitment.

Kiss-shot

The figure on the other hand though it has been definitely a 100% positive experience. While I love Shinobu to bits, I always longed for seeing more of Kiss-shot when I watched the show. Her brief appearances such as in Kabukimonogatari only serve to exacerbate that feeling.

Quite conveniently for me Good Smile Company has once again gone ahead and delivered quite nicely a high quality figure that looks pretty much perfect.

Kiss-shot

My favorite aspect is definitely Kiss-shot's smile. I can just feel the overwhelming confidence, the somewhat arrogant demeanor, the exuberance of power. I own plenty figures of pretty smiling girls but this somehow I get a totally different vibe in this situation.

Kiss-shot

GSC's attention to detail can be easily appreciated around the figure. Kiss-shot's dress contains many tears and singed marks adding to the illusion of the skirt's texture.

Kiss-shot

The folds of the skirt, the attention to the shape of the cloth as it drapes over the legs serve to continue to adding to the illusion of realism.

Kiss-shot

Kokorowatari looks the part quite nicely, the paint work gives the exquisite texture and look of a Japanese sword. Several parts such as the tempered line, the ridge and edge of the sword are easily visible given it good sense of authenticity.

The feathery accents on Kiss-shot's dress with their translucency provide a delicate image and serve their role.

Kiss-shot

The skirt can be cast off giving easy access to take a gander at Kiss-shot shapely long legs, he nice plump thighs and backside. I find however that without the skirt the figure feels a bit unbalanced by the lack of volume when compared to the top part.

Kiss-shot

The reason for that being Kiss-shot's long voluminous hair given its pretty appearance with all the nicely sculpted strands and expertly done shading. The illusion of motion once again done well with the direction of motion easily garnered at a glance.

Kiss-shot

Besides, Kiss-shot has always quite top heavy after all so there is a need to account for that as well. ;D

Kiss-shot

If there is one complaint it definitely has to be the long wait for this figure, when most of the time figure releases are measured in months seeing one such as this measured in years is quite unusual.

Seeing as Kiss-shot was released pretty much simultaneously with Kizumonogatari it makes me wonder if that had anything to do with the timing. Did GSC simply take so long to release because Shaft took forever and a day to release the movie?

Kiss-shot

For me, the wait wasn't particularly long or annoying aside from the always expected one or two month delay. I jumped quite late into the Monogatari bandwagon, right around the time Nekomogatari was being released. Was the wait worth it? I would say yes. I have no complaints at all about the figure itself, whether it is the sculpture or the paint work.

Plus, if anyone ever wanted a nice figure of an adult Shinobu or were tired of all the donuts this is definitely for them.

Now then, I wonder how many loli Shinobu figures I have to go through before someone makes a nice scaled released of teenage Shinobu that is not a prize figure.

Good Smile Company - Shimamura Uzuki New Generation Ver.

GSC Uzuki Hi peeps! Are you all doing your best today?

I sure tried do my best and finish the year with a strong note with a nice look at the very lovely Shimamura Uzuki New Generation Version by the folks at Good Smile Company.

GSC Uzuki

Last time when we took a look at my favorite Cinderella Girl, Ranko, and I mentioned how Uzuki had grown on me as I watched the show.

Uzuki was in my radar in the early episodes that focused on the creation of New Generations and their struggles but quickly got lost in the background. I expected her to have a similar focus to how Haruka had in her show but the show quickly changed gears to the other girls.

GSC Uzuki

As the show kept progressing Uzuki kept fading more and more out of focus as the other characters came into the spotlight. By the time New Generations had been introduced and their initial struggles resolved the only thing I cared about was not having to tolerate Mio appearing on screen as much anymore and waiting anxiously for Ranko's turn in the spot light.

The rest of the first half of the show was spent with me happily getting to know the other girls and shipping Rin with the Producer.

GSC Uzuki

As the first half came to a close and the second started airing Uzuki had really cemented in my head as not being particularly noteworthy. The only two things I remembered is that she was part of the group with Rin and would say "ganbarimasu" a lot.

GSC Uzuki

Apparently I was not the only one who thought as much. In the Cinderella Girls game she was one the girls that kept getting passed up when it was time to get upgraded forms and nicer cards. She was so ordinary no one really thought much about her apparently other than remembering she was the starter card for the cute idol type.

GSC Uzuki

That is, until people started to notice how unpopular she was.

According to the Im@s wiki, she became more popular as people starting noticing how unpopular she was and began rooting for her. Bandai Namco took note of this and finally granted her an upgraded form.

I actually have been wondering if her back story as a passed on idol where other girls would get picked over her in auditions or move on had some basis on what happened in the card game.

GSC Uzuki

Uzuki came back into the picture for me in the second half of the show. The shake up that occurred as a result of the machinations of Director Mishiro after she set her eyes on Rin for Triad Primus and it's effect on Uzuki caught my attention.

Typically the happy, air headed protagonist will persevere through the trough times and bring everyone together back again! I expected Uzuki to give it the good fight like Haruka tried before her.

GSC Uzuki

With Uzuki though, seeing her insecurities come to the front was an interesting subversion for me. Watching as the events unfolding around her affected her more and more this in turn and in turn this extending to those around her.

Slowly realizing how her catch phrase of "I'll do my best!" kept becoming more and more a way for her to mask her true feelings from others rather than her actually trying her best.

GSC Uzuki

The culmination of her repressed feelings coming to fore front during confrontation with Mio and Rin and the anime rendition of Uzuki's image song S(mile)ing was the last push I needed to become a fan.

Uzuki has rocketed up the ranks in my idol fandom essentially through the power of character development!

Which leads me to this figure.

GSC Uzuki

Last year Good Smile Company released their rendition of Uzuki labeled as the New Generation ver. At the time I thought it was fairly pretty looking figure but I had only passing knowledge of Uzuki from reading the first few chapters in the New Gens manga.

Without the emotional attachment and not yet having descended into idol fandom I skipped on her.

After watching the anime and https://goo.gl/photos/wYcsQ2SK8rPvEZL67 the latter episodes focusing on Uzuki I had an immediate desire to own this figure. I event went back to order the figma I was also gonna skip and didn't think twice about it to get my ganbarimasu fix!

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This figure showcases her as she looked in the illustration for her S Rare+ card with Good Smile Company doing what they do best bringing her to the third dimension.

The figure as a whole nothing short of perfect as a reproduction of the original illustration.

GSC Uzuki

Uzuki comes with an alternate smiling expression showing her nice pretty eyes. I find the default expression based on the illustration to be the more charming one, I just think it makes her smile more powerful.

GSC Uzuki

Uzuki's outfit is done well, all the frilly bits look like frilly bits. The small details such as those in the ribbon above her midriff show a nice amount of detail.

I got to say though, this outfit sure shows a lot a Uzuki with that exposed belly. Plus the way her pose is pressing her breasts together sure draws my eyes.

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Uzuki's rather short skirt continues to show off her beautiful long legs quite nicely with the details on the shoes and her frilly socks all done fairly well.

GSC Uzuki

Uzuki's hair is well executed with all the curly ends and strands all well defined with the gradient giving the hair a nice sense of depth and volume.

The different strands spreading out adds to the Uzuki's over all sense of motion very nicely.

GSC Uzuki

The ribbon in Uzuki's hair is painted perfectly, the different colors all kept within the boundaries of their respective flowers. The plaid pattern on the ribbon itself is done without any issues at all and looks the part.

I will continue to be amazed at significantly small details like these done well.

GSC Uzuki

My favorite part of this figure though has to be Uzuki's radiant smile! It just makes me happy whenever I set my eyes on her .

The producer choose Uzuki because of her smile, Rin's motivation to become an idol came about after watching this same smile. I can easily see where both are coming from!

GSC Uzuki

That smile coupled with Uzuki's energetic pose just fills me with intense happiness and brightens my mood! The original illustration and this figure both have done a good job in capturing Uzuki's essence!

GSC Uzuki

If I have only one regret with this figure is that I did not buy it sooner, Uzuki was released by Good Smile Company during late May last year!

I do suppose timeliness is a very rare in this hobby in the first place. Although, if you want to see a more timely review from when Uzuki was released you can do so at Wieselhead.

GSC Uzuki

I am completely satisfied with this rendition of Uzuki, I feel I could ask for nothing more. This is one of those times were I fall in love with a character and a figure comes along that just captures all the things I love about that character!

After the excellent work done with this figure I am definitely looking forward to Good Smile Company's next rendition of Uzuki!

In the mean time I will continue to do my best!

Pre-order list: I still like to burn money!

Greetings fellow collectors, how has the year of 2014 been treating you so far? At least for me the first third has been fairly nice, the figures I pre-ordered are actually getting released. As far as overall figure releases the year has also been nice to me, lots of nice figmas and figuarts I want and some nice scaled figures to top them off. Let's get on with list alright?

May

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Panzer vor!

Did any of you guys watch Girls und Panzer last year? Did you like it? It seems the show was pretty much hate it or like it from my point of view. Since I'm buying the figma of the leading lady Miho you can probably guess I enjoyed it. Never knew I would like tankery and tank battles as much as I did when I watched the show.

At first I wasn't all that interested when the figmas were first revealed, after all without the tank the girls are just... well... girls. However, while they don't actually come with parts to build a tank they do come with some nice related accessories depending on their role. As you can see Miho as the commander has the commanding seat and the binoculars. I read somewhere that apparently GSC was gonna release a tank kit for the Panzer the girls ride in I hope it's true.

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If I had to say who my favorite girl from Girls und Panzer that would probably be Yukari, the resident Tank otaku from the show. I really liked Yukari, her enthusiasm for tankery and tanks was a bit infectious at times. Much like Miho she comes with some nice bits from her role as the Panzer's loader, I'm really digging that tank shell for some reason.

Although, if I had to say what my favorite part is it would be the awesome sex hair Yukari comes with, so lewd! :P

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It seems like you've lost your love, oh sad Mr.reader! I, Cure Heart, will set your heart racing again!

Kyun~kyun~!

Have I ever mentioned I am a big Precure fan, I'm pretty sure I have several times before. As of this post I'm just one show and a couple of movies from having watched all of it, Precure 5 GoGo is the missing show for anyone curious, including the currently airing Happiness Charge Precure. Just recently Precure celebrated their 500th episode and this year is celebrating the franchise's 10th year anniversary. That's a lot of Precure I watched since Exilehero introduced me to it back in 2010.

I really, really must like Precure since I keep buying these S.H. Figuarts from Bandai. These figuarts sure keep getting the low end of the stick in my opinion, their releases are so spread apart and not in any timely fashion and their build quality leaves something to be desired sometimes.

Alas, here I am buying Cure Heart from last year's Doki Doki Precure. I liked her, probably one of the most capable leaders even if she was a bit of a Mary Sue in some episodes. Since I'm buying Cure Heart it probably means I will buy the rest of the girls, gotta keep the Precure merchandising machine going for more shows after all.

June

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You know how I just mentioned Precure figuarts get the low of the stick right now? Cure March from Smile Precure is a nice example. Now only is she barely getting released this upcoming June, a whole two years since Smile Precure aired, she is also an exclusive. Three out of five girls from Smile were exclusives actually making them a bit more expensive than they really should have been.

It's ok, since I liked Cure March, she was a nice straight up no nonsense Precure as shown by her post transformation catch phrase. Plus, she was voiced by the always lovely Marina Inoue, have her voice a character and you got my interest.

After Cure March that leaves only Cure Sunny for me to complete the set, she already has a release date on MFC but I haven't been able to find her up for pre-order anywhere which is kinda odd.

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Do you guys like Idolm@ster? I sure do after watching the anime, I really want to play the games. Alas I'm not fluent in Japanese enough that I can fully enjoy them. Even so I can still enjoy other aspects of it.

One such aspect of it is of course figures as you can see with the super cute Ranko from spin off card game THE iDOLM@STER: Cinderella Girls. I love her Chuunibyouness, something I find amusing as her voice actress Maaya Uchida voices a certain other Chuunibyo, and she looks super cute with her goth loli looks. Besides just look at that pouting expression, so darn adorable!

Luckily for the ones that like Ranko and wish she was a playable idol in the main games the recently released THE iDOLM@STER ONE FOR ALL has some DLC of interest for them.

May be I should pick up that game, I always wanted to play a console Idolm@ster game anyways.

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One of the hottest properties right now has to be Kancolle the online game with anthropomorphized Japanese WWII era battle ships. While you could possibly know nothing about the game or its contents or anything about WWII era ships I bet a lot of people are familiar with poster girl Shimakaze. Heck just look at the last Comiket's winter braving cosplayers cosplaying as Shimakaze in such large numbers.

While I don't play the game, too much trouble in my opinion with the lottery and VPN stuff, it is an entertaining affair with plenty of girls to fit anyone's taste. While not a fan of Shimkaze as a character I do love her expressions in game and this figma, specially her "damaged" expression. Plus Shimakaze makes very good use of the improvements made with the figma 2.0 body, just look at that lovely tushie of hers!

Since I ordered here from the GSC web shop I wont be getting mine until some time in June but I will be getting an extra version of Rensouhou-chan with a different expression than the normal release.

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Infinite Stratos is not the best show around, it has some... problems for a lack of a better word. These problems were definitely exacerbated during its second season not too long ago.

Still, if you were there just for the girls then you are in luck and the show delivered on that front. A while back Wave released a Beach Queen figure of Laura, sadly that figure turned out to be fairly popular and it sold out before I knew it. Haven't really checked recently but her second hand prices were a lot more than anyone should pay for a Beach Queen figure.

Luckily to the rescue of sorts comes Penguin Parade with this super cute embarrassed Laura. I never bought anything from Penguin Parade nor have any of my figure collecting buddies so this figure will be my first experience with them. I'm hopping things turn out well since this figure is just a little bit pricey for its 1/8th scale and would be a shame for my first experience to be a bad one.

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A few years ago there was a show by Shaft called Bakemonogatari, each Blu-ray cover got some spiffy illustrations by Akio Watanabe which in turn go some nice figures by Good Smile Company. A lot of people liked both the show and the figures becoming very popular, as for me? I completely ignored both of them.

Fast forward to a few years later and I watched and enjoyed the show and it's sequels, my favorite girl of the show would end up being the donut loving loli vampire Shinobu. Being the figure collector that I am I wanted to add GSC's Shinobu to my collection but alas the second hand prices the figure carried had one too many significant digits. That made me sad, very sad, luckily GSC decided to lift up my spirits by doing a release of Shinobu. Come June I will be a happy owner of this figure for a couple hundred less than some were asking for her.

July

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My relationship with Nitroplus has been pretty hit or miss. I loved their earlier release of the Lovecraftian inspired Saya no Uta, which you can now buy in English by the way. It made such a big impression to me that to this day it is the only straight up PC visual novel I finished. It's also the theme of the first post I ever did in this blog apparently.

The first couple chapters of Chaos;Head had some awesome creepy atmosphere going but the anime ended ruining that game for me. I still can't muster enough interest to watch or play Steins;Gate, which you can also now buy in English.

However, when I watched a trailer for the Robotics;Notes visual novel it really caught my interest with the neat in story augmented reality bits and its use of 3D models rather than static 2D portraits. When the anime was aired I watched it, I enjoyed it for the most part and did find some of its commentary and use of technology interesting.

What I liked the most though, would have to be the lovely Frau. Socially awkward geeky girl who knows how to code? Oh god, marry me please! Frau was like a refreshing gust, a character definitely set in a different camp than the usual moe tropes really tickled an itch I never knew I had.

This figure of Frau with the couch and all the pocky boxes is nice, GSC did a good job in spicing up the original illustration. I do wish it was like the nendo and it also came with the disheveled hair in addition to Frau's usual pony tails.

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Here we have the third girl from Girls und Panzer, the communications officer Saori. This busty lovely lass sure is amusing to me, always preoccupied with how to attract the opposite gender only to end up being popular only among her underclassmen, all of whom are girls mind you. I mean, aiming to get a boyfriend in a show with an all female cast? Good luck with that.

As you can see she comes with even more bits from the tank, at the very least even if there is no actual tank displaying all the girls together will be kinda neat.

With Saori that only leaves two more girls, gunner Hana and tank driver Mako, I look forward to seeing their proper reveal and eventual release.

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~~DON'T LOSE YOUR WAY!~~

Did you guys watch Kill la Kill? I know silly question, who didn't really? After watching Little Witch Academia, buying the Blu-ray release and funding the kickstater for a second episode I can say I really like Trigger.

When they announced they were doing a TV series I figured it would be worth my time. I must be honest at first I wasn't all that into it, I found the character designs a bit ridiculous, I mean just look at Ryuko above! I watched the first two episodes a bit disinterested, but then I got to the third and holy mother did I become hooked, that fight between Ryuko and Satsuki, the music, the sudden bump in animation quality, the over the top fight with people flying about, all that hot bloodiness!

With that said, how can I not buy the leading lady? I'm glad that Ryuko is a character I really like, something that makes me very happy as Ryuko wont be just any figma for me... she will be my 100th figma! I can barely believe I bought 100 of these things, sure as hell didn't expect it when I got Exilehero to buy Yuki when he went to Japan back in 2008.

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Ah, the last of the inner scouts, with Sailor Jupiter I will have all five of them. I don't know if you noticed but I have a thing for completing sets like these, at least when it comes to the non scaled articulated stuff.

I actually missed out on pre-orders for Jupiter so she ended up being sold out in the usual set of shops! Luckily for me this is a Bandai figure and Bandai just so happens to sell directly through Amazon in the US so I just ordered her there.

As I been buying these Sailor Moon figuarts I have been noticing I don't really remember all that much about the show or the girls themselves. I heard that there was gonna be a Blu-ray release of the show in the west or something lately, might be a good time to pick it up and re-watch it that way.

 

This takes care of pretty much anything that will be released up until summer Wonfes shows us what's coming for the rest of the year. Although this list might grow by one or two figures before that.

I actually also want to buy Wing's Purple Heart; however, my lack of experience with Wing and the fairly high price made me think it over a long time and unexpectedly for me she sold out. Given her price I was really expecting for her to be available up until her release, only thing I can do now is wait and hope I can still get her for a decent price.

The other figure I'm considering is Max Factory's Yagami Tsurugi from Sasami-san@Ganbaranai, for Tsurugi there is no particular reason I haven't ordered here, I suppose I should just do it.

 

What about you guys, anything tickle your fancy here? That's all for now, peeps, have a nice one!