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Figure Unboxing and Review: Kino no Tabi (Kotobukiya)

From the amazing show of Kino no Tabi (Kino's journey) where I reviewed here, Kotobukiya made a figure of Kino together with Hermes. This is the first scale figure that features both Kino and Hermes.
 Kino's box is fashioned in the style of a luggage trunk, which fits the theme of the anime a lot - where Kino travels around the world on her trusty motorbike, Hermes. 
The trunk also has printouts of luggage stickers on it, which keeps to the theme. These stickers also cover the important information of the figure, allowing the collector to enjoy the information displayed in a visually appealing fashion.
Another special aspect of this figure is that the box is slightly different from most others. The front of the box is connected via Velcro and upon opening it, you see a huge window that displays the figure in all its splendor.
There are images of the figure, along with a description of the ARTFX J line, would seem like a new marketing strategy to get people on board Kotobukiya's fanbase and the ARTFX J line. The pictures also took care to showcase both of Kino's head parts - with and without her helmet.
This is a brief look at the blister she comes in. She has Hermes, a luggage pile that would be placed behind Kino on Hermes, a base that has a field of red flowers lining a sandy dirt path, a loose flower piece and, as mentioned before, a second interchangeable head. This interchangeable head is also a first release bonus, and any future releases would not contain this extra part.
The instruction sheet for this figure is also in the theme of the the show, replicated as a letter sent from Kotobukiya's head office to the collector.

Even the little red seal that's used at the back of the letter is in place, keeping it as authentic as possible. That being said, the letter can be unfolded to get a full instruction sheet.
The base of this figure is a very good diorama that ties the figure together.

All the aspects of the diorama base - the red flowers, the green grass and the dirt sand - are carefully textured and comes with small indentations to fit the different parts of the figure to. However, as there are no pegs, the figure would simply be placed on the base loosely.
Hermes fits perfectly into these indentations and is thus able to balance on the base. In this figure Hermes is larger than Kino and it is evident that a lot more effort and thought was placed into sculpting and painting Hermes.
Even the wheels are delicately sculpted and painted in different colors and textures to make it look as realistic as possible!

This peg directly above the the back wheel and is for securing the luggage trunks that Kino is bringing along with her for the journey. Next, let's take a look at the luggage trunks that are supposed to be placed on the peg.

The trunks are sculpted with perfectly straight edges and impeccable detailing. The cloth bundles are sculpted simply, with soft edges and a carefully rolled-up look. However shading is minimal for the cloth and the two black straps holding it in place.
Kino comes with an alternate head without her helmet. This helps to create a carefree feel for the figure, however, it's easy to see that a lot less effort has been placed into sculpting and painting Kino as compared to Hermes. The tips of Kino's hair is a lot less sharper than the other figures in Kotobukiya's ARTFX J line. The color chosen for painting Kino's hair and eyes are on-point but there is minimal shading for her hair.
The paintwork for Kino's head with the helmet is a lot better as there are more elements that Kotobukiya can work details into.
The white parts of the helmet are textured with fur while the rest of the green areas are sculpted and painted with a smooth finish to resemble cloth. 
The goggles at the front of Kino's cap is also painted delicately with no paint spills.
All in all, I feel that Kino looks a lot sharper with her helmet on. The sculpt of her slim build is also accurate to the series.
The belt cuffs at her wrists and ankles are not as well painted and shaded and appears as a one-tone coloring. There seems to be a little spillover of green from her outfit as well. On the other hand, her shoes seem to be well sculpted, with all the laces carefully sculpted and layered one above another. The shoes are also painted with a rather matte shade that brings her look together.
The way her coat bunches above the belt on her waistline is realistic and the way it flares out after is also adequate for her pose. The belt on her waist however, isn't shaded sufficiently but accentuated with gold accents that helps to add enough to the accessories without overshadowing it.
All the different revolver components at her belt is more visible from the back and all of them are strapped in a way that makes it easier for her to retrieve the weapons when needed. This is also reflected well in the 3D rendition.
The stray flower can be placed anywhere on the base. The stalk uses a lively green color that reflects the succulence of the stem and leaves. However, the red petals of the flower could use a lot more detailing.

All in all, this figure is well-made due to the thought placed into sculpting and painting Hermes. If you take Hermes as the main star or the co-star of this figure, it would be appropriate and worthwhile to get this figure. However, if you wish to get a figure of Kino as the star, the difference in quality of work on Hermes and Kino would make it a figure that isn't worthwhile to get.
~ Reina-rin

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