Onii-chan’s Corner: Quality and What Really Matters

This post is made to help collectors with questions regarding the quality of items and to debunk fabricated myths about particular toys and figures. For further reading on this topic, please refer to HS Hobby’s excellent blog posts located here and here.

Your toys and figures? They’re made in China.

We often get asked by new collectors whether or not our figures are made in Japan or if Japan version figures are superior to Asia version figures. This is only natural as all collectors would want to avoid getting something that’s not worth their purchase. To make the long story (or blog post) short, figures are not manufactured in Japan. They’re made in China. But that doesn’t mean that they’re of poor quality or are bootlegs. Here’s why. Continue reading

Bandai’s chibi-arts C.C. Revives The Geass Fever

It’s been a long time since the last episode of Code Geass aired on screen, but that hasn’t stopped Bandai from cashing in on the iconic franchise. With Geass fever bound to hit Japan all over again because of the new Akito of the Exiled movie, it was a good time for the popular toy manufacturer to announce a new figure of the popular and mysterious C.C.. This C.C. is part of Bandai’s chibi-arts toy line which is similar to Good Smile Company’s more lauded Nendoroid figures. As seen in the image above, C.C. comes with a lot of accessories, including the cat, Arthur. She also comes with different face plates so you can play around with her in different scenarios.

Bandai’s chibi-arts C.C. will retail for 3000 yen and is bound for a September 2012 release. Since this is Bandai, expect a timely release for this one. Grab one now!

AGP Laura Bodewig Ready for Launch

The flag of Germany flies in the sky as Laura Bodewig from the mecha-musume anime “Infinite Stratos” sorties out in her Schwarzer Regen courtesy of Bandai with their Armor Girl Project [AGP] line.

Laura’s Schwarzer Regen is definitely bringing the heat with her railgun making her a formidable opponent at long ranged. Even if the opponent gets close to her, she can still deal her opponents with her beam sabers/spears generated through her hands. With the revelation of this, you can expect the others to follow suit.

 

Laura Bodewig in her Schwarzer Regen will be available by August of 2012 with the cost 7800 yen.

 

TAGCOM 6 Event Report (Yes, We Had a Display There!)

When we have anime figure displays, we’re usually given at least a month to prepare for the event. Why a month? Well, consider that not only do we have to invite lenders and record their figures to be displayed in the event, but we also have to layout the name tags for the figures and have further discussions with the organizers with regards to the floor space we have to work with. I think this is why our latest stint at TAGCOM 6 at Robinson’s Place Manila last March 31 to April 1 has got to be one of our most impressive showings yet. It may not have been as grandiose as our previous displays but given the extremely rushed preparation time we had, we’re quite proud of the showcase we had. Continue reading

FiguArts ZERO Himura Kenshin Looks Top Notch (And Affordable Too)

“Rurouni Kenshin” has seen a revival in Japan soon and while there have been both good and bad things that have come out from it, the attention it has gotten recently is a welcome sight especially for those who grew up following the series. Bandai is paying tribute to this great series by announcing the “Rurouni Kenshin” FiguArts ZERO line of figures and the first entry is none other than the titular character himself, Himura Kenshin. Continue reading

Official List of Activities for the Ozine Fest Anime Figure Special

With the Ozine Fest Anime Figure Special nearing, I’m sure a lot of you are wondering what activities are in store for the con goers this time since this is a very unique event that’s the first of its kind in the country. We’ve just received the official list of events from Ozine management and based from what we’ve gotten, this is certainly one of the most innovative conventions yet. Without further ado, here are the things that you should look forward to this coming December 28 and 29 at the SM Megamall Megatrade Hall 1. Continue reading

Infinite Stratos First Launches with Cecilia Alcott

Bandai who just had their Tamashii Nation 2011 Event showed us many things that made us jelly. And one of them is from the Mecha-Musume Anime Infinite Stratos, and they first launch out Cecilia Alcott in her IS Blue Tears. Continue reading

MegaHouse Yusuke, Kurama, Hiei and Kotobukiya Yami Yugi Figures Coming Next Year, Childhood Nostalgia Hits Big Time

Freshly brought to you from MegaHobby Expo 2011 in Japan, MegaHouse and Kotobukiya are bringing back the classics with these 3 blockbuster figures (make that 4) coming to you next year. Continue reading

S.I.C. Kamen Rider Double CycloneJoker Gold Xtreme Announced, Toei Hero Exclusivity Reeks of Suck


The Soul of Imaginative Chogokin (S.I.C.) toy line is where the term “acquired taste” really applies to. For years, S.I.C. has developed somewhat of a niche market for those who care less about show accurate designs and love the artistic liberties and eccentric detailing only found in this product line. However, unlike the more popular S.H.FiguArts, the extreme makeovers of tokusatsu characters in the S.I.C. line, along with the more advanced engineering involved means that product releases are much more seldom. Such has also been the case with their exclusive releases and as a result, S.I.C. exclusives really are fitting of the term “exclusive,” such as this unexpected announcement of an S.I.C. Kamen Rider Double CycloneJoker Gold Xtreme from the movie, “Kamen Rider Double Forever: A to Z/The Gaia Memories of Fate”

This S.I.C. version of the powered-up version of Kamen Rider Double’s ultimate form features a recolored Crystal Server running down the middle of his face and body, but the base body sculpt is otherwise untouched. What are sure to grab attention though are the famous dragonfly-like wings which are also redesigned to fit with the S.I.C. aesthetic. They look quite similar to the redesigned wing frame of the PG Strike Freedom Gundam, probably because of the jagged edges lending to a more mechanical touch. I’m pretty sure you’ll need a Tamashii Stage for this one too since the wings are sure to make the figure back heavy. S.I.C. Kamen Rider Double CycloneJoker Gold Xtreme will be a Toei Hero.net exclusive, meaning this one’s bound to be much more of a pain in the ass to get than the usual Tamashii Web exclusive. It’s kind of similar to those fan club only perks that one gets in a school org making it that much of a greater exclusive in my opinion. This one’s going to retail for 5775 yen, still without the additional shipping and handling costs, and will be released in March 2012. Better start saving up if you’re an S.I.C. collector.

Bandai Improves RD Gundam AGE Line… At Least According to These Magazine Scans

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Recent scans from another respected hobby magazine in Japan, Figure Oh!, reveal Bandai’s plans with regards to its upcoming Robot Damashii product releases for the ongoing anime series, “Mobile Suit Gundam AGE.” Continue reading

RIOBOT Gurren Lagann Makes Competitors Look Like Plastic Playthings, Price Certainly Agrees

Outside of the Robot Damashii and Revoltech Yamaguchi lines, there hasn’t really been any other entrants into the smaller articulated mecha figure lines. However, new manufacturer Sentinel looks to make a splash with their RIOBOT offerings and hopes to compete with the more well-known juggernauts from Bandai and Kaiyodo. Sentinel is certainly looking at the right franchises to make figures of as they’ve tapped into the more popular ones so far, such as Gurren Lagann, as shown above. Continue reading

Hobby Japan December 2011 Scans (OH GOD, YES SHISHIO!!!)

Another Hobby Japan issue, another round of figures to salivate upon. Scans for the December issue of Japan’s foremost hobby collectors’ magazine don’t quite reach epic levels, but compared to last month’s downright boring announcements, these ones are much more excitable. Continue reading

A Rant Against Otaku Injustice (Arrghh Bring AFA Over Here!!! Edition)

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Pound for pound, Filipinos are probably some of the most die-hard otaku around, and yet we’re still shortchanged when it comes to exposure on the global otaku scene, apart from a certain She-Who-Must-Not -Be-Named and her legion of delusional servant fan boys. Anime Festival Asia 2011 stands to be one of the biggest international events of the year and yet, it’s never leaving the shores of the Merlion (Singapore for the uninformed). To compound our wrath even further, a recent announcement that a Vocaloid concert will be held at AFA 2011 just bluntly outlines the incredible injustice that we have to sorely accept. Heck, I want an AFA event here, with all the international companies like Bandai and GSC, the to-die-for meetings with seiyus, the Anisong singers I admire, and yes, even the technologically impressive and magical Vocaloid concert that we might never have, even if I’m not the biggest Vocaloid fan by a long shot.

For those with deep pockets to fly over to the land of “(insert sentence here) Lah,” Anime Festival Asia 2011 will be held at the Suntec Convention and Exhibition Hall from November 11-13, 2011. Meanwhile, I’ll just rage here with a cantakerous temper like an unwanted %#*$!!

Team Onii-chan! Will Be At Collecticon 2011!!!

As part of Team Onii-chan’s vision to conquer the world… I mean, spread the joy of figure collecting to the Philippine otaku and toy communities, we are once again making ourselves present in another highly anticipated event. This time, we’re taking ourselves and our beloved figures to Collecticon 2011 at the Robinson’s Midtown Mall from October 8-9. Whereas previous conventions we joined were focused on the otaku community at large, this time, we’re reaching out to general toy collectors to literally inform and share with them our addictive Japanese figure hobby. Of course, we’ll also be displaying some of the latest and greatest figures to come out of the shed, but please also do attend our “little talk” (which we’re still discussing on how to go about it) about Japanese collectibles (sched to be posted later). Once again, we’re inviting you to our figure display at Collecticon 2011. We hope to see you all there! :)

RD Strike Rouge IWSP Not For The Unfabulously Cashless

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Bandai continues its milking assault with another variant release that’s sure to irritate Robot Damashii fans even more. Their latest Tamashii Web Shop exclusive, the RD Strike Rouge IWSP, merges Cagalli Yula Athha’s fabulously pink Gundam with the bulky IWSP weapons pack for a supposedly fearsome combination. Continue reading

chibi-arts Blue Rose to be Released Before Tiger and Bunny, Head Scratching Ensues

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Bandai has once again curiously announced a minor character release ahead of the series lead, this time with “Tiger and Bunny’s” Blue Rose getting the chibi-arts treatment before more celebrated characters, Wild Tiger and Barnaby Brooks. Continue reading

Bandai Begins Ao no Exorcist FiguArts ZERO Line With… Shura!?

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Another move coming out of the left field, Bandai has announced the release of the first “Ao no Exorcist” character figure, the demon-sword wielding bust lady, Kirigakure Shura, under the FiguArts ZERO line. Continue reading

New Gundam AGE Suits Come From The Planet of Cool, Puts Ugly AGE-1 to Shame

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Recent magazine scans, or so they seem to be, reveal new Gundam designs for the upcoming kiddie- targeted series, “Mobile Suit Gundam AGE.” However, unlike the previously featured AGE-1, these new variants look like they’ve come from another planet of coolness, rather than the derp kindergartener design of the aforementioned lead suit. Continue reading

Team Onii-chan! at The Best of Anime 2011 Ingress!

Tomorrow is the big day and Team Onii-chan! has started preparing for it just a while ago. Of course, when you have a cast as crazy and diverse as this, wackiness ensues. Continue reading

RD Nu Gundam in the Works? Oh, Bandai You Tease!

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A scan showing a preview of the upcoming Robot Damashii (RD) Unicorn Gundam Destroy Mode Full Action Ver. reveals that the next high-profile Gundam to grace the RD lineup might be none other than Amuro Ray’s ultimate mobile suit (at least from an anime standpoint), the Nu Gundam. Continue reading

S.H.FiguArts Super Saiyan 3 Son Goku A Delight For Musclebound Fans, Not For Your Accountant

Despite being both a well-known series, Dragonball Kai hasn’t had a great outing in terms of toys recently. Back then, Dragonball toys seemed to be all the rage, but now in an otakusphere where girly, fabulous men rule, these musclebound freakazoids have been left collecting dust in toy shelves. Such has been the case for the S.H.FiguArts Dragonball lineup as recent additions have been relegated to Tamashii Web exclusive status to prevent overproduction and costs for that good ol’ farmer, Bandai, which is a sad thing as their latest release, the Super Saiyan 3 form of Son Goku actually makes me kinda’ drool. Continue reading

Gundam AGE MG Kits Announced, Design Still Sucks

This October will bring new anime for otaku to watch and toy manufacturers to… well, sell a bunch of stuff to make people poor. On such show is the newest installment in the long-standing Gundam franchise entitled, “Gundam AGE.” Unlike previous shows though, “AGE” looks like one of those Saturday morning kiddie shows where no one dies and everybody sees sparkling fireworks while riding a childish robots, in short, not good at all. Continue reading

RIOBOT EVA Unit-01 Cannibalizes on Eva Franchise and Your Money

Despite being released almost two decades ago, the Evangelion franchise is still going strong in terms of toy releases, with the now familiar EVA Unit-01 Test Type being a very willing victim of this infinitely dreadful commercialization. Joining in the fray is previously covered manufacturing newbie, Sentinel, who has decided to release its own version of what is probably the most well-recognized, if not, then certainly right up there, mecha in human history. Continue reading

C3xHOBBY Event Roundup: Same Old, Same Old… Only In Technicolor

Unsatisfied with the semi-annual monetary carnage brought about by Wonder Festival, figure manufacturers have once again brought out their wares for future consumption. However, unlike WonFes, C3xHOBBY seems more like a minor technicolor preview of already featured goods, rather than the major blockbuster wallet beat down we’ve come to expect. There won’t be comments on most of the figures, except those with undesirable stuff to note of (like release dates and if available, price) as we’ve covered them already in the previous Wonder Festival coverages. More pics after the break… Continue reading

Gundam UC Episode 4 Release Date Announced

Rabid mecha otaku waiting for the next installment of Bandai’s lovingly treated OVA masterpiece, “Mobile Suit Gundam UC” will be thrilled to know that the 4th episode entitled “At the Bottom of the Gravity Well” will be showing in Japanese theaters on November 12, 2011. Continue reading