Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Hobby Search half-price shipping, Sept. 21-30th!

Hobby Search is having a half-off shipping sale when paying with paypal. This might not sound like alot, but now would be a great time to order inexpensive items that come in large packages - for instance, sega prize figures.  Sadly, Hobby Search doesn't stock many prize figures like HLJ or Mandarake, but you may find a few items you like. You might also think about ordering something large, as well.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Kuroneko pureneemo XS

Here she is, Ruri Gokou Azone Doll.

Let me say first, this is a nice doll. When I originally received the packaged and viewed the production model I was not pleased. It was not the same as the pre-order photos. Sure, many figures do not have the same attention to detail and variety of paint colors as their prototype, but what I enjoyed most about this figure was how her face was so accurate and faithful to the original. Not so, with the production model I received. Her face is chubby. Oh well, it's grown on me now and not so bad. 

The quality of her clothing is exceptional. There is no velcro, fabric hooks have been sewn in to the pieces. Her stockings are sewn together and have a wonderful texture feeling that stretches. 

The Azone packaging itself is so bland. They seem to have generic boxes that they place stickers on and send them off from the factory. I think collectors would not mind paying a little more for something more intricate. 

I did have two problems with the figure. The first, I don't believe this was caused by settling during shipping... Why do I always get the broken figures? Thankfully her foot just came out of the joint. Let's not be careless during packaging!
The second is, her arm would not bend. Someone on flickr recommended I tried the blow dryer trick and it worked. Just use a blow dryer to warm up the plastic and gently bend the arm and the joint at the same time. 

What's really great about dolls is their clothing is fluid. That means she can be posed in anyway a real human would be able to. It makes posing figures in a sitting position easy as pie.

Overall, I am very pleased. Sadly I now have to collect all sorts of doll clothes for dress up time. I had a few nekomimi maid outfits selected but I think I may need to revise more items before I make the final order. 

btw, today is Hatsune Miku's birthday! The 100th figma production has been delayed and did not make release today but it should be out soon. 
for some reason, Touhou ibuki figma did make final production and I have her coming to me in the mail as we speak.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Ika-musume Season 2 starts on Sept. 26th!

Ika-musume Season 2 starting!
I hope it follows some of the comic, my favorite chapter hasn't been done yet.
news from ANN

if you have a crunchyroll account, join the group

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Obitsu multistand, get you one!

 Obitsubody Multi-stand is a great item to have. This costs about 300yen 
and is easily available for about 8$ USD including shipping.
The item comes in a bag and  needs to be assembled like a plastic model
gundam kit. There are various colors to choose from but I prefer clear.

Here we have a typical revoltech stand. It works great with the revoltechs
but it is a little wobbly and it doesnt hold the figures tight so they tend to lean forward.
On the plus side, the stand is quite invisible as it fits snugly around the revoltechs' waists.

Here is the obitsu multistand. It is a little bit more intrusive but it does
grasp the figure firmly and allows for greater pose-ability.
The stand is rebuildable and can cater to most any of your display needs.
It can hold robots and airplanes though it was mainly designed for dolls. 
I purchased this item for my Azone doll I have incoming. 
As you can see, the stand is visible as it grasps small figures such as this revoltech.
However, it does allow for far great flexibility and on larger figures it is not so pronounced. 
As I mentioned before, the stand can be adjusted to different sizes and shapes.
The typical V-stand as included with most figmas, but it can also be 
rebuilt with dual claws to hold fighter jets upright.
For the amazing low price, I highly recommend this as a must have if you own
various dolls and pose-able figures.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Nichijou is Great-oh! anime


Now that the second half of the series has started it all makes sense. I am glad I stuck with this show because it definitely has something to offer that you cannot find anywhere else. Nano goes to school. How did I not see this coming? Every maid robo goes to school. Without a doubt, I used to think Nano and the professor were just a side story that detracted from the main appeal of the show, but now I am totally on the other side of the fence. I love Nano in her school girl outfit. It is just so darn cute I cannot get enough of it. These four characters together is like a match made in heaven. I kid you not, the opportunity here is golden.
Did I mention how cute Nano is? She is really cute. She is so cute. The cuteness is like really cute. It is exploding cuteness. 

Nano in her school uniform, it is like a whole new world of cuteness waiting to be explored.  I want her. I must have her. I need to be a part of her world. Me and the professor, we are on the same wave length. Because great minds think alike. 

Anyone seen Hanaukyo Maid Tai? 
reminds me of ikuyo's denki-kuns

Let's not forget the supporting cast. They are magnificent in their own right. So many interesting characters. So much is going on that I cannot even remember most of their names. Normally that would be a bad thing, but in this case the sheer greatness of the Nichijou world is just overwhelming. I think we are on the express train because there are no signs of stopping. 

Disheveled! Great-oh!

Let's get one more Tsun-tsun in!

Friday, June 10, 2011

Good Smile Akashiya Moka

Look what I got! 

Rosario and Vampire figure Moka. this was released two years ago, or so. For whatever reason, I passed on most of the Rosario figures, I'm not sure why I made that choice...  Now it is quite hard to get them. I recently bought this one second hand, though it is still sealed. I am trying to determine if this is authentic? Does anyone know how to tell the difference for this particular figure? There are lots of counterfeits of this item going around. The seller assured me he bought it from a reputable store which I am familiar with and from touching the outer box I believe it is authentic. Oh, well. Time will tell, I won't be opening it anytime soon.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Plum Konomi Magic User Review

 愛佳でいくの!!柚原このみ マジックユーザー 1/7 PVC フィギュア

Edit: AmiAmi has sent a replacement wand and I have received it!

I ordered a large package from AmiAmi on Mon and it arrived here today, on Thur!  That was fast, and the shipping fee only cost me about 4000¥which is currently about 50$ USD, Ouch!

So as I collect alot of To Heart 2 stuff, I keep an eye out for any new items in the market. And here we have Konomi magic user by PLUM. As you might think, this statue resembles the konomi witch figure closely. The good news is if you passed on the konomi witch, the magic user figure is attainable at half the price! 

So what about this company PLUM? Who are they? Well, PLUM stands for Pretty Lovely Unique Mechanism. Sounds like a recipe for magic to me! They seem to dabble in all sorts of things. Have you every played G-Darius? You know, the old shooting game where you fire at big robotic fish on the sega genesis? Yeah, I loved that game. Well, PLUM makes a plastic model of the space ship. They also seem to make plastic model kits of Japanese temples... I guess bandai does that too, so we are cool here. I think this is their official blog link.

side of the box
back of the box

The first thing I noticed when I opened the package was, "Phew! What a smell!"
This thing just came off the presses, you could smell that polyurethane smell everywhere.
The packaging is good and similar to Kotobukiya, but the plastic is thin and flimsy,
but that is fine as it does the job

However, there was a sinister event waiting for me around the corner
Wha... I just opened this, where are the whiskers!
OH NOEZ, my product is DEFECTIVE!

Much sadness thus henceforth ensued. I'm just kidding. I love all my figures unconditionally. Now, if I had dropped the figure and broke it, then I would be crying.
Yes, I checked the box. Yes, I checked it again it is not there.
I contacted amiami to see what they know but they are probably still sleeping at this hour.

So let's talk about the quality of this figure. Bottom line: Good but could have been excellent. You see, What PLUM tried to do is make something modern but very affordable at the same time. What I love about this figure is that the hat is magnetic! I have always advocated that Figmas should have magnetic accessories. Hats, scarfs, whatever. I even thought about patenting my own figure magnetic system, wouldn't that be cool! But alas, reality states that adding a magnet increases costs and that is not good with the modern exchange rates.

The figure has been glued together. You cannot separate her at the waist as is common with most figures. Also, her little bag has been glued to the skirt. Why did they do this? Probably because it is cheap, but they should have used more magnets! The paint job is good and the pvc material is decent. But the other big issue with this figure is the scale. This is marked as 1/7 which is true compared to other figures, but not so if you compare Konomi's size to other To heart 2 figures. Konomi is supposed to small and petite. PLUM's magic user is a little thick. I would have preferred it a bit smaller and thinner or maybe list the scale as 1/6th.
Overall, I am pleased with the figure but I would like PLUM to take more care in production. As with all new companies sometimes you have to work out the bugs. I too have received defective Figmas when Good smile first started making them. Quality control is a standard you strive to live up to, not something to check off on a list. 

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Oreimo last episode air date set for 5/31

artist unkown

the final episode of Oerimo will begin airing next Monday/Tuesday. Honestly, I think the series should go on a bit longer since lots of open ends abound. Oh well, trying to make a monthly schedule might be getting tedious and starting a new work might be beneficial as well. Here is a link to the preview on the official website.

Friday, May 20, 2011

kuroneko nendoroid has arrived

Finally got mine in the mail. Kuroneko is here!

This is what the box looks like, I'm sure you have seen it posted everywhere. So I won't bore you with regular pics. 

So let's do a few pics with her head on someone else's body! 
Kissy Kissy!

or how about this?
nope, that one is wrong.
It should be more like this!
Ah, the arrogance! 
The beauty!
It's a master piece.
a living work of art.


Sunday, May 8, 2011

My Ordinary Life Nichijou first impressions and review

Spring is a great season for Anime

So many new shows, so little time. Just looking at the list of upcoming and recently released anime is daunting. But as usual, with how fast the industry is moving forward, not all anime is worth watching right away. Finding those gems is part of what makes watching anime fun. 

That brings us to My Ordinary Life. Alot of people had high expectations of this show. It has all the classic themes for a great anime in the making. School life, Comedy, Strange occurrences and behavior. Sadly, most people would agree with me that the show is having a hard time taking off. I want this show to be good, I want to like it, I want it to be the thing that makes anime great. It's hard to live up to those expectations though. 

People compare this show to Azumanga daioh, School Rumble, or some other well known slice of life comedy series. We are talking about heavy hitters here. Famous shows that raised the bar or turned the wheels to set the current trends in anime we see today. So I am trying to be very open minded. As long as the show is entertaining I will be Ok with that. Regrettably, so far I have found it to be more on the boring side, partly because some of the settings are so abstract or unbelievable that I find it not entertaining. 

First of all, I love maid robos. To heart 2 has maid robos. Maid robos are awesome. Why in the world does this show have maid robos? And the scientist is a preschool child? Ehhh... I think someone is trying a little too hard to put everything in one pot. I love a good Japanese/Chinese curry. But that doesn't mean you should stick anything and everything in it. You need to think about what flavor you want to achieve and add ingredients that compliment that flavor.

Anyway, I don't want to bore you with the problems of the series, so let's move on. 

Episode 6 is Awesome!

I loved this episode. This is what they should have done from the beginning. Just keep it simple and realistic with absurd situations. Anytime you have a School Life comedy with lucha libre you know it's going to be an awesome event. The principal has mad skills and he needs them to bring stability to an insecure world. 

Death or Die!

Even the smallest challenges in life can be a serious matter. That is what everyday life is about. Living to the fullest! I am happy to see this show is going to push-on strong. Let's not write this series off yet and keep them near the top of our viewing roster and continue to support them our best. Less explosions and more exploring the thought patterns of the excellent characters and this show could be a gold mine of awesomeness.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Kuroneko Pure nemo XS

is what I said to myself as soon as I took a glance.
You can still preorder it at HLJ but hobbysearch has stopped taking preorders.
This is one of those items where preorders filled up fast.
at 145$ she is not cheap, but this is the most accurate representation I have seen in such a long time. I am not a big pure nemo fan but I do have a few other small azone dolls. 

Marisa is also available and looks very well done.
you can order her from ami ami

Monday, February 21, 2011

My turn to cosplay!

Recently got some more Touhou figures in this past Jan. Aya is a nice figure. the quality is improving. They still feel delicate, of course. But the little balls that keep their hands stuck to their arms has been done away with. I really hated those things and always worried they would break. Aya comes with a bird and wings so other accessories were left out, such as, not having any fingers to point with...

Borders has also filed for bankruptcy if you had not heard. Everything in the store is 20% off. That is not killer savings yet, but I think the prices will lower as the stores get ready for closing. I picked up a few things.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Haqua du Lot Herminium and Aragaki Ayase to share the same voice actress

If you have not heard, the next season of The World God Only Knows starts this April. I am excited. The first season was decent but I always felt it was missing something. I believe the problem with the first series is that the anime attempted to resemble a love adventure novel instead of a love comedy. Yes, an anime about someone who likes dating sims is funny but that, fundamentally, does not make a love adventure anime; it is still just a comedy.

Because of this error in genre choice the anime series was forced into a very slow pace. Of course, I am sure the budget had much to do with this as well. Since the story did not progress fast enough I found myself waiting for the end of character arcs hoping the next would be more interesting.

You see, the manga takes a different approach. it is an extremely fast paced story line. So many interesting things are going on you literally cannot put it down without finding out what happens next. The first season of the show covers pretty much the first seventeen chapters of the manga. Currently, the series just released chapter 130. That is a huge gap, yet, the good news is that the slower the anime goes the more anime there might be *crosses fingers*, yea!

One of my favorite shows last season was oreimo. The show does have a lot of flaws and is no where near the level of Genshiken, but it is amusing none the less. I do like Aragaki Ayase as I am drawn to those type of negative characters myself. stabby, stabby, stabby... The voicing done by Saori Hayami was prefect and fits the character well. It was revealed that she is currently doing Haqua in the second season of The World God Only Knows in the very last episode of the first season . What makes this pairing up really great is how much Ayase and Haqua are alike. Haqua shows up in chapter 22 of the manga. She is not a yandere, but she does have very similar traits. She is the serious character always trying her best yet cannot beat Katsuragi and it frustrates her. Of course, she then begins to develop a romantic interest as well. She really starts to shine when she begins to act like how a real demon helper should be and constantly keeps Katsuragi in check. I have high expectations for this coming season.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Tatebayashi Miharu

This was released in 2010 as a set called tokimeki memorial figure collection vol. 2 for the 15th anniversary of the tokimeki memorial series. This is produced by Konami who makes the game series and a few lesser known figures like busou shinki and bug killer HoiHoi-san. They also made negima and haruhi figures.

There have always been quite a few problems with tokimeki figures in the past. Either they were prohibitively expensive and hard to get due to direct mail order only or they were resin kits you had to build yourself. Cheap figures abounded yet they were in fact cheaply made and were originally ufo catcher junk.

Being an avid tokimeki memorial collector I have boxes of the stuff. Books, cards, puzzles, pencils, you name it and I might have some. So when I first saw these figures announced I was excited yet skeptic. The good news is these figures are very well made and I am thoroughly pleased. The quality of the materials on these figures is a step above what you would expect from a Sega prize figure.

Don't get me wrong, I love the sculpt and design of many Sega figures but ultimately they are made to be affordable and the quality of the materials suffer greatly. Not the case here. The packaging itself is very similar to the 50$ Negima figures I have purchased from Konami in the past. The plastic is soft and ply-able yet the color is rich and has shadowing. The figure has enough weight that it will not topple over easily.

@background photo from flickr
For under 10$ I definitely recommend these if you have some space to fill in your next figure shipment. Miharu is also the secret character in the series but now everyone can catch her themselves!

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Toheart2 Nendoroids are finally here!

FDCGR is going to be re-released on the PSP under the name ToHeart2 Dungeon Travelers.
the limited edition will come with two nendoroids of Tamaki and Konomi! The battle system still looks the same and is lack-luster but some new effects and CGs have been added. Of course, the game is PG-13 being on the PSP.

The figures only come in the limited edition set and will most likely set you back over 120$ after exchange rate and before shipping. Here is the official website and more pictures of the figures and CGs on famitsu.

Oreimo on PSP is also coming out; man, I have to get myself a PSP! In other news a new version of the PSP will be out at the end of the year called the NGP.
I don't know what I should do! Supposedly it will be backwards compatible yet it will not have a drive for any discs.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Samurai Tamaki

Kohsaka Tamaki Samurai version from the game FDCGR! Honestly, I did not see myself purchasing this. So many figures are coming out this year that I literally have been strained on funds for things I want. The industry is growing too large too fast; I foresee another anime bubble popping in the figure market although I do hope not.

The first thing that came to my mind when I saw this item was why Samurai?
I would have loved to have had just the basic fighter version. A figma or some other poseable figure would have been superb. I love the kitty shield even though I am not an avid cat supporter. Below you can see a few of the available jobs: Fighter, Paladin, Valkyrie, and Samurai.

But I do have to say the choice has grown on me. My favorite thing about Samurai Tamaki is her flower hair piece. Usually, when you see a snap shot of this figure it is from the opposite side so you don't get a clear view of the hair piece. The design really brings out her femininity and adds a pop of color.
I do feel she is a bit scantily clad for my tastes. It is however provocative and displays a sense of strength, neglecting full armor to maximize strength and speed.

The packaging is done in typical Kotobukiya fashion. Individual parts are wrapped in plastic sheets to prevent any paint rubbing. Inside the box it says Tamaki and displays the official FDCGR logo. The package is designed to display her face clearly and there are no obstructions in the way.

Interestingly, my printer ran out of ink today. For some reason I am also out of backup ink cartridges. I definitely want to get a few pictures of this figure with different backgrounds but it will have to wait.

This is a well done figure and a quick rating I might give would be a solid 8 out of 10.
hopefully, more pics to come soon.