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Figure Unboxing and Review: Toujou Nozomi Birthday Figure Project 1/8 Scale (Stronger)

I've been a fan of the Love Live! franchise for more than a year now and perhaps it was inevitable that I would purchase scale figures, after buying the various artbooks, albums and assorted merchandise like files, keychains and Ichiban Kuji tickets. Fortunately (or perhaps not for my wallet), my favourite girl in μ's, Nozomi, also happened to have really attractive figures, from the Snow Halation prize figures manufactured by SEGA to this year's School Idol Festival one by Alter. But the first scale figure of the third year member I ended up purchasing during my trip to Tokyo was the Birthday Figure Project one by Stronger.

The Birthday Figure Project line of scale figures featured the members of μ's in their Kira Kira Sensation outfits and although they weren't the prettiest, they were certainly the most memorable, featured in the penultimate episode of Love Live!'s second season. However, I can see why Stronger decided to stick with these outfits as they featured each member's theme colour. Even the figures' bases sported the exact same shade.

This 1/8th scale figure was part of a large haul when I went to Tokyo a few weeks back so do look out for more unboxing posts in the coming months. Yes, that includes more Saber Nendoroids but I'll be breaking that streak with a very different king come January, but back to the current unboxing and review. Other than the usual stock image on the front of the box and standard issue blister pack, the flaps on the top of the box featured Nozomi's signature. It was a cute touch, along with the included birthday card and folder.

For those of you wondering what the message reads, here you go. I had to scroll through MyFigureCollection's website for a while to find this, no thanks to my non-existent Japanese skills.

"Thank you so, so much for celebrating my birthday with me~!! I've matured and grown just a bit, here and there! I hope my charms of nearing adulthood reach you~ <3 Please continue to look out for me from here on!"

Of course, this isn't complete without her signature plus the chibi version of the folder's art.

The folder and birthday card were pre-order bonuses and I was lucky to get them as the figure was an unopened, secondhand piece in one of the many hobby stores in Akihabara.

The outfit on the actual figure looked just as good as the studio images but the overly bright lighting in my room does not do it justice, sadly. Other than Nozomi's clothes, the other thing that stood out was the excellent sculpting of her hair. I realise that many companies ace this part these days even though its one of the trickier parts of a figure. 

You can probably tell from the first photograph that Stronger highly encourages you to collect all nine members of μ's to spell out 'Love Live!' from their bases. If you're facing space constraints, you can even remove the lower portion of the figure's base but I appreciate how it acts as a makeshift riser.

Although the outfit's design is a simple one, Stronger did a great job of replicating it here and it even looks better than it did in the anime. I only wish that it was a 1/7th scale figure like Alter's School Idol Festival and SEGA's Sunny Day Song ones instead of the more diminutive 1/8th one right now.

This Nozomi scale figure fits right in with the others plus the two Nendoroids she has and although I'm quickly running out of space on my shelf, it's a problem I'm happy to solve.

Written by ET

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