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.

Alter - Yuuki Yuuna

Yuuna In my figure collecting years I have essentially have one golden rule when it comes to the figures I buy, I must have watched or played the source material where applicable. I do this as a way to limit what I buy, to make the tough choices on what figures to buy a bit easier. Occasionally I bend this rule somewhat though and I order a figure and while I wait for its release I watch or play the source material.

Yuuki Yuuna by Alter from Yuki Yuna is a Hero was one such occasion.

Yuuna

In retrospect I feel that whenever I do so I'm taking a big gamble. Usually when I buy figures, I do so since I like the character, there is just something about them that I enjoy enough to drop a few hundred dollars buying figures in their images.

The figures that I tend to like the most are those that capture that "something". Whether that is an aspect of their personality, a cool signature pose, a unique outfit from their show or game or imagery that harkens to their character during a big impactful moment.

Yuuna

When I buy blind so to speak I'm essential forgoing any of those reasons or others that are usually behind my purchasing decisions. I'm running the risk of not knowing whether I will like the character or not. After all, no matter how good a figure, no matter how perfect it might be to the character's likeness if I don't like the character my enjoyment of the figure will fall through the floor.

Yuuna

Luckily enough for me not only did I enjoy Yuki Yuna is a Hero as a whole but ended up really liking Yuuna herself. She is the type of protagonist that I like, the type of protagonist that I want to see more often.

Yuuna

Yuuna lives up to her show's namesake, she is a courageous hero that helps others. Not only did she fight against the monstrous antagonists but also against her allies when they wavered when faced with the horrible truth of their world. An act that takes more courage than facing any enemy. When her convictions faltered she might have hesitated but she was able to reaffirm them through a little bit of soul searching and the help of her friends.

Rather than sit down and cry Yuuna took action whether good or bad in line with her beliefs.

Yuuna

My biggest pet peeve when it comes to protagonists are the ones that don't do anything. The ones the spend the whole show whining about how it's not right to do this and that, not taking any action at all.

All these shows have a conflict one way or another, otherwise there wouldn't be a show but by god if you are a protagonist do something about it. Boy did Yuuna do something about it right from the first episode up until the last.

Yuuna

That said, Yuki Yuna is a Hero was not a perfect show for me. I feel that some of the world building that was left for supplementary material would have better served its purpose in the show. Alas, that's a complaint I will always voice when said supplementary material contains things such as dramma CDs or light novels that are typically never translated.

Yuuna

The ending did left a tiny bit bitter taste in my mouth, making me think why did Yuuna and her friends go through all of this again? Perhaps if there was an epilogue that showed what the actions of Yunna and the other girls had upon their world and its ongoing conflict I would feel more satisfied.

Yuuna

Something as with the Madoka TV show would have been nice. We didn't just have to take someone's word for it, Shaft clearly showed what Madoka's sacrifice effect had.

I think there should totally be a second season of Yuki Yuna is a Hero or at least an OVA showing that. I have no idea how popular this show was in Japan but I would hope that it sold enough that a second season wouldn't seem too unreasonable.

Yuuna

Still, I'm quite happy with the show, I liked the journey quite a bit. Interesting imagery, characters, music and battles.

Of those the visual design and imagery caught my attention the most, after all that's why I bought this figure and became interested in the show and Yunna in the first place.

Yuuna

Alter's rendition depicts Yuuna in the pose she takes after her transformation. This was the first thing that attracted me, this pose carries such a strong presence to me. The majority of figures I end up buying tend to go for "cute" poses more than anything else.

Yuuna though? She look like she is ready to pick up a fight.

Yuuna

Yuuna's expression carries a sense of determination more than anything else in my opinion. Determination to go out and do heroic things like "Hero Punching" monsters in the face!

A nice change of pace from the typical smile that figures I buy typically get.

Yuuna

Yuuna

One of the reasons I think this figure has such a strong presence is how well Alter captured all this energy in Yuuna's pose. I can feel Yuuna's hair flowing through the air just looking at it.

Yuuna

This feeling transfers as well to the ribbon on Yuuna's chest plate over her modest bosom. I can feel that rippling motion when I look at it. The ribbon is also a perfect example of the detail Alter included in this figure.

Yuuna

This is best seen in Yuuna's Mankai gauge on her right first, the cherry blossom flower is intricately painted on the back of her hand. Might not be apparent on this photo how tiny details like this are.

Yuuna

While I have no idea what Yuuna's gauntless are actually made off Alter was able to give them a nice tough look to them. They look sturdy enough to go about hero punching things.

Yuuna

All girls are cuter with hair decorations thus I'm glad Alter did a nice job with Yuuna's hair clip. The shape is well defined and the cross shaped markings on it are clearly visible.

Yuuna

Yuuna comes with a simple long oval base to fit her fairly horizontal pose. The base follows Yuuna's imagery with cherry blossoms presented in a good looking layered design with flowers and petals of different colors and sizes.

Yuuna Yuuna

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Alter went pretty light on terms of accessories for Yuuna. Two versions of her faerie Gyuki are included.

These pretty much depict Gyuki perfectly. One shows it's usually carefree attitude and the other it's big eater behaviour. Gyuki would gobble up anything snacks on sight including even beef jerky.  A somewhat disturbing thought for a cow familiar not lost on the other characters or me.

Yuuna

A bit disappointing I suppose but given Yuuna's melee combat oriented fighting style Alter was limited in the amount of accessories they could include. If it was up to me I would have like in addition to Gyuki the inclusion of Yuuna's second faerie familiar Kasha.

Yuuna

Overall a really nice rendition of Yuuna, in fact I will go and say this is THE rendition of Yuuna to get. While FREEing's version is not bad and the nendo is cute enough this is the more impressive sculpt by far if you ask me.

Yuuna

Although as Alter's version shows a cool looing Yuuna and FREEing's version depicts a cute looking Yuuna I think both figures would complement each other nicely. I regret a bit not picking up the FREEing version when it was on sale not too long ago and doing just that.

Yuuna

All around I find Alter's version a great pickup for fans of the show or Yuuna. I'm glad that this figure caught my attention and got me to watch the show which I would have otherwise skipped on.

Until next time, I will leave you with my favorite of the Hero Club's five tenets: Sleep well, eat well!

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.

Aquamarine's Akatsuki

Akatsuki Sup guys! How are things treating you in the new year?

For me it's the typical case of, I can't believe is going so fast! January just went by in flash before I knew it. That's exactly how I ended up breaking my nice string of monthly posts that I had started. I suppose that is alright since this post is a disruption anyways.

As you can see this time we are taking a look at the cute and tough Akatsuki from the novels and anime Log Horizon from Aquamarine.

Akatsuki

Akatsuki was the last scaled figure that I received during last year, quite a nice year for me in terms of releases. Even though she was the last, she takes the title as the most memorable figure of the year for me.

Out of all the characters I could think would be getting a figure, out of all the shows I could think, not once did Akatsuki or Log Horizon cross my mind. When the only surprises I get nowadays are the higher and higher prices for figures, Akatsuki was a breath of fresh air.

I'm hoping this year will full of surprises like this!

Akatsuki

Since I received Akatsuki I got thinking about Log Horizon, specifically about the author, Mamare Touno. Last year he ran into some trouble with the Japanese government due to some unpaid taxes. Usually from what I've seen when Japanese creators get into trouble it spells doom and gloom for their works. As far as I know he paid his owed taxes and apologized to his fans for the whole ordeal.

I'm hoping that this didn't cause any issues his publishing arrangements, I would really like a conclusion to Log Horizon after all!

Akatsuki

I mean, I have become hooked after having watched the two seasons of the anime and quickly became my favorite "trapped in a game" show. I was actually quite late to the party when it comes to Log Horizon and watched the first season quite a bit after it aired.

At the time I was quite burned out on the concept of players become mysteriously trapped in an MMO.

Akatsuki

Having just watched SAO and being terribly disappointed by its second half I was not in the mood to try another show with a similar premise. The latest show from .hack was a bit of a miss with me being mostly about nothing with characters I didn't care about.

I always liked the concept though, I did enjoy playing through the seven .hack games on the PS2 after all.

Akatsuki

Luckily for me, I attended a local anime screening gathering where they happened to show a few of the early episodes of Log Horizon. I became hooked on what I watched.

When I got home I desperately needed to know what Shiroe was planning. I needed to know how selling burgers was part of his master plan for Akiba or else I wouldn't be able to sleep at night!

Akatsuki

So I started the show properly from the beginning and blew through it in a few days. I couldn't wait for the recently announced second season at the time after I was done watching it. The second season continued to deliver for me, I was a fan.

I should have suspected as much given I had liked another work by Mamare Touno, Maoyuu Maou Yuusha.

Akatsuki

Out of all the shows that follow this premise I have enjoyed Log Horizon the most. One of the reasons is how this time around the world of Elder Tale, the MMO that Shiroe and the rest are trapped in, actually feels like a game.

Akatsuki

In other shows, like SAO for example, aside from token references to concepts like logging out, hp bars, quests, etc it all really just felt to me more akin to a fantasy show. The way things like skills and such were handled was essentially just the same as using a named attacked in something like a shounen show.

Log Horizon on the other hand? Stats and skills work like one would expect in MMOs, concepts like aggro management, good party composition, and skill cool downs to name a few play a key role in battles.

Akatsuki

My favorite aspect that is explored is the relationship between the players and the now sentient NPCs, the People of the Land.

The very idea of the rules we take for granted when interacting with a game affecting the overall plot is quite engrossing to me. Specially when it leads to characters such as the quirky Princess Lenessia or the ever amusing interactions she has with several of the other characters.

Akatsuki

Indeed, while I love the way the setting is handled, it is the characters that make me stay and got me hooked. It's probably easy to tell what I will say next, out of all of those characters Akatsuki is my favorite. That's why when I saw this figure I took a gamble and tried Aquamarine for the first time even when I think their prices a tad bit too high.

Did that gamble pay off? Well, I would say yes, it paid off quite well for me.

Akatsuki

Aquamarine's rendition of Akatsuki is spot on. At a glance you can tell it's her, those deep purple eyes, her subdued smiled that reflects her personality perfectly!

The locks of her hair match her rather distinct style from the show with no problems.

Akatsuki

My favorite part of this figure is definitely Akatsuki's hair and in particular, her long ponytail.

I have always loved how in the show it was used to display motion so well. In my eyes it gave Akatsuki a unique sense of smooth movement, something I found perfect for her class and skill set in the game.

Akatsuki

The overall sculpture is great, no particular rough spots on the figure itself. Same goes for the painting, everything looks quite nice with no blemishes to be seen with the naked eye.

Details such as shading are done well and small touches like Akatsuki's blush were pulled off with no issue.

Akatsuki

If I have one complaint with the painting it would fall on her weapons. The shade and texture they used for her sword and kunai doesn't give me illusion of a metal blade. When compared to other figures I own I think Aquamarine could have done a bit better.

Akatsuki

That however, is something I can easily overlook and forgive though because the one thing I truly hate about this figure is her kunai.

The kuani are two separate pieces and are held together by a small shallow peg on the handle. This made it nearly impossible to insert them in Akatsuki's hand as the action of trying to do so would cause the two kunai to separate. The peg is just not enough to hold them together when applying force.

It was so frustrating to me that I resorted to gluing the two together.

Akatuski

In the end though, I'm very pleased by the work Aquamarine has put out with Akatsuki. I won't hesitate to buy more figures from them in the future if the right character at the right price shows up.

Overall a quite pleasant and positive first experience!

Until next time, peace!