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Figure Unboxing and Review: Hatsune Miku (Harvest Moon version)

Wednesday, November 20, 2019 / No Comments
Hatsune Miku in Harvest Moon style was originally styled as a Nendoroid but with her overwhelming success in sales, her scale figure was announced and swiftly released. And here's the figure that is her full glory, in a box that suits the atmosphere of the figure.
The pinks, purples and blues on the box creates the atmosphere of a hazy night, while the circle cutout on the box resembles a full moon. 
The back of the box is as usual, with the information that Good Smile Company usually slaps on their boxes. The images on the box also showcases the front and back of Miku, as well as her outfit and hairstyle that's unique to this version of Miku.
 In the blister, you can see the two parts of this figure: namely Miku hereself and the base.
The base is elegantly designed with a blue starry sky and glowing clouds. There are three metal pegs on the base which fits directly into the pegholes in Miku's shoes.
After assembling Miku on the base, we are able to see her in her full splendor. Her robe is a muted color with white and lavender as well as orange. The gradient on Miku's hair is pretty as well, going from deep teal down to translucency at its tips.

Miku's hair ornaments are dainty and elegant. It is made up of several white flowers with yellow centers and a red tassel adorned with a pink bead. A little more effort going into sculpting and shading the tassels would be great.

The twist in Miku's robes is distinctly visible with the sculpt and the shading shaping the folds in the robes. The scallop hem of the dress adds to the cuteness of the figure and gives a more unique feel when you get to see more of the translucent inner layer.
Unlike the unassuming front of the figure, when you view her from the back, you can see the amount of effort placed into sculpting the robe on this figure. There are so many creases and folds in the dress to make it appear more soft, comfortable and realistic.
From the back, she appears so melancholic...
Ironically, the only gripe I have is also her hair. Although the hair seam is hidden well, the horizontal layers end awkwardly at the back end of her hair which makes it look misplaced.
However, from the side, the atmosphere around Miku seems to change completely and she appears elegant. The sculpt of her hair is especially pretty and elegantly twirling about the figure. The paintwork for her ponytails are subtly beautiful on every level.

Another important aspect of Miku's design is the fan. The translucent material used to make the fan gives it a similar look as with rice paper, which is normally used to make such fans. The brown lacquer holder of the fan is another pretty aspect to look at, which isn't clear in the photograph below. However, it comes with sculpted detailing that makes it look jut like a pretty fan that suits this elegant figure!
 ~ Reina-rin

Figure review: Fate/Extella Link Gilgamesh

Thursday, November 14, 2019 / No Comments
Hi everyone! It's been a long time since I've shared a figure of mine. Today's star is Gilgamesh from the super popular Fate series, and this is the version from Fate/Extella Link. As you all might have heard, this particular game entry is a hack-and-slash sort, so I was surprised that they chose this outfit and pose for him. However, there are visual novel aspects in the game, and his battle outfits have already been well-represented in the other games of the Fate franchise, so I am quite happy to be able to obtain a softer Gilgamesh.
One of the reasons why I wanted to get this particular figure is my love for tigers. They are my favourite animal and here Gilgamesh is hanging out with not just one but two adorable tiger cubs!
 As you can see, Gilgamesh appears to be enjoying his time with them as well. This figure turned out to be smaller than I had expected, and I'm not very impressed in the facial detailing, particularly the eyes. While the flatness is expected as they are generally decals, the lack of highlights in his iris is quite unnerving.
Details-wise, there are some areas done better than others. While the hair detail is average, the folds on his clothing are sculpted and shaded nicely.
The tiger cubs are well-painted as well for such a small scale; although I found some of the markings messy, I did appreciate the individual strokes that helps mimic soft fluffy fur.

Another thing I like about this figure is that it doesn't require a base and looks good from every angle! Even from this "front" view, it looks like he's leaning against the wall in a relaxed manner.
Overall, I am quite satisfied with this figure as a fan of Gilgamesh and tigers! However, it is not very value for money as it was smaller than I had expected and the details were not very fine as well. If you prefer the "usual" Gilgamesh, there is a large selection of other versions to choose from.

Written by Nana

Figure Unboxing and Review: Kousaka Honoka (Alter)

Tuesday, July 9, 2019 / No Comments
Alter has finished releasing all nine of its first round of Love Live! girls, and as the release date of the White Day set is drawing close, I thought it would be apt to review a previous figure Alter made for the same series: Kousaka Honoka.

Faito dayo~

The box has the same clean design as all the other 8 girls released by Alter, featuring the girls' image color, with a huge window. The cream border holds all the usual information about the product, series name, and brand name.
It also comes with a small window at the back so you can easily see the details of Honoka's costume before putting her on the stand.
On the sides of the box, you get a printed view of this figure of Honoka thought I wish they added the illustration of the SR card of Honoka to one of the sides for a better comparison. But putting that aside, let's look at Honoka in greater detail!
First, we'll start with Honoka still in the blister. She's in an energetic jumping pose (we often see her like that in the series!) with her trademark Faito dayo! hand pose. The majority of her outfit is in bright orange (her image color) that matches with her hair, and with different shades of yellows and gold to add variation to the colors. Her outfit also comes with several navy portions to help balance the color palette.
The theme of her fruits outfit would be citrus, and her hat as well as the two buttons on her vest helps to accentuate that particular theme.
The base for the figure is the same as the other eight Love Live! figures, which is a plain white circle with stars, the series' name and the character's name in their respective image color. I love it when the figures in the same line have similar bases with minimal variation (such as colors of words) which would help the display look more organized! 
Assembly simply includes putting her onto the base. The stand is a sturdy metal rod and she appears to be a lot more stable as compared other "floating" figures as she doesn't shake as much when moved.
A simple 360 of Honoka in this view shows that there are many details in her sculpt. For instance, the flower at the top of her stocking is sculpted on and not just painted. 
All the frills and ruffles on her outfit are also individually sculpted and painted with a pearl gold color at the fringe.
There are many details that show how dynamic Honoka's jumping pose is, such as the way her ponytail splays out to the side, and the ends of the bow at the small of her back have slightly different shapes, as if Honoka was caught in the peak of this motion.
Similar to the asymmetrical position of her hands, her feet are also bent at different angles, giving the figure a cutesy feel.

The sides of Honoka's hat is painted with glossy paint while the top with the citrus cross-section is matte to help it stand out better. 
While Honoka's gloves could use a little more detail, I'm in awe with how the facial features and expression suits Honoka to a T. The little white buttons are also extremely cute and adds to the design while not overshadowing other aspects of the outfit.
The yellow lining on her vest and gold hem on her skirt are painted on impeccably. I also love how the creases on her outfit are extremely realistic looking! The only part I am not a fan of would be the mass of white polka dots on her skirt,  and I wish they used a different pattern instead.
The slightly raised band of fruit ornaments at Honoka's hip are also a very nice touch. Can you guess what are these fruits are?
The sculpt of the bloomers are very realistic: it seems so soft and poofy! The way the stockings dig into her thighs are also replicated well, with the lace frills helping to soften out the feel.
Her boots are in three different colors: orange, gold and navy. The glossy orange comes with a lighter color (highlight) and a darker color (shading) that really helps to bring this part of the figure to life!
You can also see the other details on the front of her boots! 
However, a little more detail on the soles of her boots would be nice as these parts are visible due to her pose after all... 

But at least we have the pretty hair sculpt to make up for it! The strands are mostly sculpted individually and there are many indentations to show the flow of her hair. The small hair seam joining her front hair piece to the back is present but easily ignored due to her hairstyle.
 Alter does not disappoint with the attention they pay to details and the effort they put in for their sculpts. This is a worthy figure if you are a fan of the series and would like to collect the girls. Otherwise, although the figure is great, it might be more apt to save for a better statement piece in the future.