Loading
HomeArticlesArticle #24652

Griffon - SF 1/2.5 Kirino Kousaka Nekomimi Swimsuit ver.Griffon - SF 1/2.5 Kirino Kousaka Nekomimi Swimsuit ver.

Today, we review a long awaited and hyped figure announced in late 2014 and which fuelled many discussions. And no wonder why… The history of very large anime figures has been plagued with conservative designs, dull paint jobs and doll-like stiff poses. I remember those weird and creepy 1/2 and 1/3 figures of Sailor Moon and Evangelion from the late 90s and shudder at the thought of it. Worst, this time we are talking about Griffon Entreprise, a well-established figure maker that earned a reputation of sketching interesting designs but often failing to deliver a quality products the customers.

Since Griffon launched its new 1/2.5 scale Super Figure line, it surprised us with honest products with evident merits. Now, we will try to see how this Kirino Kousaka Nekomimi Swimsuit version from the famed Oreimo franchise fare against other figures recently sculpted by Team Genesis, in particular Shinomiya Hiwarari which I already reviewed earlier this year BLOG #21522. Be prepared for some excellent surprises since Griffon delivered us the home run it promised us. And to be honest, while most people were anxious or blatantly pessimistic, I called the shot more than once.

For this reason, I took extra care to review this wonderful figure in length. Lots have been said about Griffon and it’s time to give them justice when they do things right.

Note 1: This review is about the regular version and most remarks should also apply to the Soft Bust version that will be released soon.

Note 2: Also, I won't rate the figure with scores. I don't feel confident enough to do so.


Miscellanous Facts

Weight:

Figure (including base): 12.5 lbs or 5,67 kg
Original box + 2 cardboard boxes supplied by Griffon: 6.6 lbs or 3 kg

Shipping Cost:

From Japan to Canada: 15650 yen
Custom fees (Canada): CDN $62 (about US $45)


Packaging

First thing, this heavy Kirino figure is huge and thus packaging is far beyond what we usually see to take in account the weight factor. To ship it safely, it was boxed in three cardboard boxes like an Egyptian sarcophagus or Russian dolls. The larger box was almost 42 inches high! I can assure you the 1 km walk to bring it home from the post office was quite painful.

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444586368.jpeg

The figure box is similar in design to other Super Figure packaging so I’ll repeat what I said in my previous review. It is a large cardboard box without glazing. Box design serves mainly the purpose of illustrating the figure itself from all angles and does a quite decent job at it. I've seen far less attractive boxes for larger scale figure. This PVC is quite huge and weights a lot, a less sturdy but fancier packaging wouldn’t have been a good idea!

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444586370.jpeg

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444586372.jpeg

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444586374.jpeg

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444586376.jpeg

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444586483.jpeg

The figure is protected into a sturdy two-part foam case and it efficiently protects the product. The figure itself is wrapped in a plastic bag and a plastic sheet is inserted between her body and hair to avoid paint transfer. Another plastic sleeve was also protecting her cat tail. Fortunately, these plastic protections are easier to put back than it was possible with Shinomiya. This is a plus to make storage easier and safer.

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444586485.jpeg

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444586487.jpeg


Sculpture

As I previously said, a long time ago most large scale figures were characterized by stiff poses mainly for weight limitations induced by material used. Even the newest Griffon’s Super Figures aren’t immune to that. Shinomiya Hiwamari ITEM #187418 and Misaka Mikoto ITEM #228578 share a very generic standing pose. But Team Genesis outdid itselft this time by choosing a dynamic dynamic and somewhat suggestive pose. Be aware the original source material – a dakimakura cover illustration – is even more shameful! ITEM #153659


It shoud be noted that Team Genesis doesn’t physically sculpt but instead make 3D models. It probably enabled them to refine the pose and it pays off. The main quality being that Kirino looks good from ALL viewing angles, be it front, sides, back, looking down or looking up. When I say all angles, I mean it... It wasn’t the case with Shinomiya, limiting the way you could display her. This particular Kirino would look quite good if displayed as a center piece in a room with possibilities to appreciate her 3D qualities from every possible angle. This makes her far more interesting than your generic Beach Queen or swimsuit figure because she truly inhabits the space around her.

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444590337.jpeg

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444590339.jpeg

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444590796.jpeg

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444590802.jpeg

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444591163.jpeg

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444591270.jpeg

Another good point about the dynamic moe pose is the fact the weight is well balanced. Thus, the figure is self-supported without the help of braces. This makes for a visually interesting and well-engineered product. We will discuss more about that in the “Base” section.

Not only the pose is good, but the visual rendition of the original moe character design is absolutely spot on. Kirino’s charming and idealized young body is perfectly rendered by a genuine attention to anatomic details and proportions. No wonder the character is a teen magazine model and it shines through Team Genesis’ work. They perfectly captured the cute but sexually twisted natures of the character by choosing this mildly suggestive (should I say almost lurid?) pose. Some will say it makes the figure awkward but I’ll answer it is exactly what Oreimo is all about: inappropriate behaviors!!!

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444591431.jpeg

When reviewing Shinomiya, I complained that small details were poorly rendered and hoped this would be addressed later. My wish came true. Now let’s look at her in details.

First, her face is not only faithful to the character design but its expression of boastful cheerfulness is perfectly rendered. Small details like her cat-like tooth are crisp.

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444590341.jpeg

img=640x480]s1.tsuki-board....[/img]

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444591423.jpeg

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444591370.jpeg

Hairs are beautifully sculpted and float well into the space. The figure may be huge, but the hair points are sharp and well-defined. Front hair and bangs nicely frame her face and bring movement to her face. The hair clip is molded on directly on her hair but doesn’t mean it is extremely crispy. A lot have been speculated about her flapping ear looking like a pig ear. In real life, it doesn’t appear so. Sure it isn’t very cat-like, but is ain’t a distraction. The standing ear is exquisite.

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444590794.jpeg

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444590686.jpeg

This small gap between her bangs and her ear could have been handled with more care.

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444591159.jpeg

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444590950.jpeg

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444590333.jpeg

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444590399.jpeg

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444590397.jpeg

Anatomic details like muscles, bones and skin are done in a realistic way. It means you can feel a sense of tension in some area as would happen with someone holding such a pose. The detail level is on par with high quality PVC figures of smaller scale. To those familiar with Gift 1/4 scale swimsuit line up, I’d say it is slightly superior. Another good point is that she isn’t skinny but has some curves here and there. To an old school anime fan like me, this is reminiscent of the sexy and slightly “chubby” character design of the 80s. It truly boosts the figure charm a lot and it doesn’t feel like a skinny clothed frame.

Her feet are gracious and well-defined. Toes and ankles are graciously sculpted and gives the impression she’s truly standing on the point of her feet.

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444590457.jpeg

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444590455.jpeg

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444591055.jpeg

The same can be said about her hands which are perfectly sculpted. No sausage fingers! They are fine, realistic and their pose says a lot about what she’s alluring to.

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444590453.jpeg

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444590461.jpeg

Her left hand between her legs is quite incredible. And once again, there’s a lot of care put into rendering how the skin and muscles would react under such pose.

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444590684.jpeg

Look at that level of detail rarely seen in anime PVC figures... and I'm not talking about her buttocks, but the fingers. Probably the best I've ever seen...

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444591053.jpeg

Her torso is excellently rendered too. Her hips, navel, rib cage and collar bone are once again top notch. For an anime figure, her breast is realistically sized and doesn’t look like a pair of balls slapped on a body even if she’s well-endowed. The breast is naturally attached to her body, which earns extra point. The bikini top also shares the same qualities with interesting folding patterns depending if the strap is under tension or not.

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444590682.jpeg

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444591268.jpeg

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444591425.jpeg

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444590335.jpeg

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444590405.jpeg

The same level of attention can be found on her back with a good amount of anatomic details.

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444596054.jpeg

It also applies to her arms and legs. I’ll cut the superlatives and only say they are tastefully done.

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444591165.jpeg

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444590952.jpeg

And now, let’s look at her buttocks. Not only its bouncing shape is extremely good but you can also see that little seductive fat bulge occurring near the bikini string. Hiwamari scored high in that area and it’s good the recipe is still followed. To be noted, the way her cat tail finds its way in her bikini is particularly realistic. It doesn’t look plugged into a hole like most catgirl figures are, but it curves naturally from her coccyx and pulls the fabric in a charming and dynamic way. The falling bikini is also well done and pictures speak for themselves.

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444591161.jpeg

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444591051.jpeg

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444590401.jpeg

The final details are her accessories. It includes various straps and two scrunchies. The straps are very well defined and the small bell on her left thigh acting like a cat collar is exquisite. The scrunchies themselves are also well done and compliment the figure. Some could say those accessories are too much, but they add color contrast and variation to what is simply a swimsuit figure while cleverly hiding joints from sight.

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444590403.jpeg

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444591427.jpeg

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444590684.jpeg

Finally, I couldn’t locate obvious seam line, casting defect and bad assembly joint in my copy of that figure. Sure, upon extremely close scrutiny, you’ll see some small defects, but they are little impact and always located in hard to reach areas.

The most obvious is the fact her left hand doesn’t fit closely with the embossed pattern on her right thigh.

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444590680.jpeg

Shinomiya had quite a number of issues in that department, but it seems Griffon truly improved its commitment to quality control. There’s no comparison between both, this one is nearly perfect.


Base

The base is a burgundish brown painted slab of MDF with four holes, a felt underlayer and chamfreined corners. It does its job and doesn’t attract attention but that’s all. At least, since the figure is dynamic, it doesn’t look silly as Hiwamari (basically a standing doll on a wood plank).

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444591274.jpeg

Black plastic supports with two plastic pins are factory-mounted under her feet. They are sturdy, but the way they were fastened to her feet is dubious. Many people complained supports could snap when trying to fit the figure on her base. I quickly found out the spacing between her feet and the spacing between the base holes wasn’t a perfect fit. It means you have to use a decent amount of force to align them. I heard a strange cracking noise while doing it. I first thought the support snapped, but it was still sturdy.

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444591276.jpeg

At least, the new supports do their job correctly and secure the figure to its base in such a manner she won’t wobble like Hiwamari that leans toward her back. It may sound like an evidence, but such figures are extremely massive and require strong supports. Unfortunately, I’ve been unable to make her left feet support rest perflectly flat on the base board. It leaves an unsightly gap that I hope to fix it in a way I didn’t found yet.

Also, a problem I found with this kind of painted MDF base is that they are prone to be stained by finger grease. Seriously, even with clean hands, you’ll see finger prints. I tried to remove them on Hiwamari’s base with negligeable success. I find it annoying to pay for such a highly quality and get the cheapest base I can think of to display her. To be honest, I wouldn’t mind to make a custom-built


Painting

I said with Hiwamari that is what where Griffon’s work shined the most. This still holds true with Kirino. In fact, it is superior. I’ve been of those who never believe the prototype paint job matched the finished product. The first is a one shot paint job custom-made by an artist to sell product while the second is a mass production model. In that respect, the coloration on Kirino pinpoint what the prototype made us expect. Colors are vibrant and deep with a lot of highlights and shadows. Better, no more unrealistic pinkish skintone like it was the case with Himawari (see the comparison pictures at the end of this review). Also, the colors chosen works well together, making the figure harmonious and visually coherent.

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444591574.jpeg

First of all, the skin tone is perfect. The peach-colored hue used fits the character design and the shading is done through fully all the figure. It ain't just blotches of darker paint, but subtle variation in color that complement the excellent sculpture. This is particularly true with small details like finger, toes, ankles, armpits, etc.

The same can be said of her hair which is done in a vibrant honey tone. Shading is done expertly and brings life to the figure. It also applies to the cat ears and cat tail which are brought to life by the paint job.

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444591049.jpeg

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444594435.jpeg

Generally speaking, the paint job is extremely smooth with no dirt and defect. Separation between colors is sharp and crisp. No dribs, no fuzzy lines, no misalignment. The bikini white/pink stripes is a good example. In fact, the only paint defect I could locate is a darker smudge on her bikini top, on her right breast to be exact.

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444594433.jpeg

The painting quality can be fully appreciated on her accessories. In some instance, like the shiny leather pet collar on her left leg, you could almost believe it is a separately applied part.

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444591047.jpeg

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444591429.jpeg

The variation in glossiness all over the figure is also well handled to make sure there's difference between materials be it fabric, leather, skin and nail polish.

Finally, her eyes are marvellously done. The amount of shading and sub-shading (yes, I had to invent the word because there’s color gradient within the green different colors) is amazing and the crispness of the job is truly outstanding. I always say eyes make or destroy a figure. In this case, it truly brings life to Kirino. I like the fact Griffon took the opportunity of Kirino’s very large scale eyes (1 inch wide by 3/4 inch high) to pack them with a lot of intricate details. Hiwamari had nice eyes, but these ones are beyond compare.

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444594431.jpeg


Overall appreciation

Can my little sister be this cute? Oh! Yes she can!

This figure is I-N-C-R-E-D-I-B-L-E. Out from the box, it sparks. Honestly, it is hard to believe Griffon could have done a better job. If it was baseball, I’d say they loaded the bases with the sculpture and struck a homerun with the paint job. Absolutely no detail was neglected and the feet support issue is so negligible it doesn’t impact the overall appeal.

To be more specific, I would say the biggest quality of this sculpture is that not only details are correctly rendered from an anatomic perspective, but there is also a lot of attention to portray how body parts would react in real life under such a pose. That alone explain why this figure moves from a magnified toy for adults to real of art. We kind of see it a lot in smaller scale from top-rank makers, but this is seldom seen in the realm of very large scale figure (with some rare GK exceptions). If I could resume that, I would say this Kirino Kousaka is an Alter on Steroids.

I’ve never been a proponent of swimsuit figures; most are dull and lack artistic challenge. However, Team Genesis outdid itself with this one. They took a lurid and borderline hentai illustration and reinterpreted it in a genuinely charming and seductive presentation of Kirino’s character. I must say thumbs up for developing such an original pose from a Dakimakura pillow!

If you take in account the sheer amount of material and the exquisite quality of the resulting figure, the price asked for this figure is a bargain. Honestly, I’ve seen figures and garage kits selling for the same price that didn’t reach that level of achievement. And I’ll say it again; there are no discrepancies between the advertised product and the resulting figure. It is rare nowadays.

There have been a lot of Kirino’s figures available, many swimsuit versions to boot. The character was popular at a time and we can ask ourselves if this large swimsuit figure is relevant and add something to the lot. The short answer is yes. This is definitely a top figure among representation of Kirino. Both character design and personality were respected in a weird but tasteful mix of moe and ecchi. We rarely see that in the ocean of fan service; they nailed it.

If you have the budget, want a REAL conversation piece, something totally out of this world, then you won’t be dissatisfied. If you wanted her but feared Griffon is not trustworthy, I say go ahead and buy her. Unfortunately, while Hiwamari price plummeted to 50% of her value in a matter of days, Kirino’s value has reportedly doubled. At time of writing, brand new ones could be easily purchased from various online stores including Amazon and Ebay between 425$ and 630$ depending if shipping cost is included. Be aware the shipping cost is prohibitive (about 150$ from Japan to North America) and the chances to pay custom on such a large parcel is extremely high (it happened to me).

As a side note, I’m quite happy to have purchased the regular edition this time. I often stated soft bust is a gimmick that does no good from a visual and cleaning perspective. I can assure you from experience the rubber material used is the most effective dust captor I ever seen. Be warned.

Just for fun, I decided to compare Kirino with other figures. As you can see, she totally dwarfs Shinomiya Hiwamari – the first Super Figure produced – both in size and artistic merits. For reference, the old 80s stereo and turntable is about 1 feet high. To be noted, Shinomiya is not a true 1/2.5 figure, but probably at 1/3. On the other hand Kirino is perfectly scaled. According to source material, she would be 165 cm high in real life which translate to 66 cm. This is exactly what she would be if she was standing upright.

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444591572.jpeg

As you can see, there is no comparison with other scales. Kancolle Imuya is a healthy 1/4 scale figure while Tomoko from Clannad is generally considered a generous 1/6 figure. A 1/12 Mahoromatic on her motorbike and Misaka Nendoroid complete this study in contrast.The nicest thing is that Kirino is not only huge, but also looks good.

http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/sailormatlac1444591676.jpeg



Conclusion

“Alter on Steroids”

I was feeling awkward pre-ordering this figure earlier this year. It was a weird mix of sick curiosity, bewilderment and disdain. I even felt it would look out of place in a display. This figure truly smashed my mildly positive expectations to smithereens. Let’s see why…

Many said they didn’t understand Griffon first made Shinomiya Hiwamari (an obscure generic moe-blob), then Misaka Mikoto before releasing Kirino. The reasoning was that they would have started the line with a major hit. In fact, they did the good thing. It was their first time doing very large scale figures and they probably wanted to do it right. Starting with a simplistic figure then moving toward more intricate design enabled them to learn and master the trade. With Kirino, we can say they established the definitive recipe and set the bar high this time. They showed us in a matter of a year that the Super Figure line wasn’t a joke from a desperate company or simply a gimmick to milk money from oraku (which is true). To my eyes – at least with the Super Figures – they redeemed themselves, and with Kirino they proved me they could compete with any top level manufacturers.

I can only wish Griffon will continue its productive collaboration with Team Genesis and continue the Super Figure line. So far, each new figure released surpassed the previous one in a stellar way and it’s starting to turn into an interesting artistic endeavor. As a matter of fact, Team Genesis learned a lot in a quickly time and can now be considered a serious group of sculptors.

And now, I feel I can display this Kirino with the same confidence I would do with any sexy and artsy women figure that used to be fashionable back in the peak of Art Deco in the late 1920s and early 1930s.

OK! Now I know exactly what’s my next big purchase… ITEM #190393 It is based on another Dakimakura Cover ITEM #153855.

As would say Trebek on SNL’s Celebrity Jeopardy parody: “Please God, take me NOW!”

I hope you enjoyed the ride!
8,517 hits • 53 comments

Comments53

0pt
sailormatlac (3 years ago) #4412900Yep, most overpriced Suzumiya's figures ended in the bin, with some exceptions. I share a similar rule. If I know I did my best to get it at a decent price at that moment, I feel I did what I could, so no regret. Anyway, that happens with anything we buy. There's more chance a PCV collection will keep it's value than a car in 5 years!

With my collection I noticed a lot of ups and downs, so in the end everything is worth about the same as I paid for! xD I wouldn't call figures an investment, but it's pretty good if you have multiple to sell at some point as you can get most of your money back. xD
3 years ago
0pt
Maakie (3 years ago) #4390002Ah, most Koto GK's seem to be quite rare nowadays. I hope to own one, one day too!
Hrrm, your example happened to a lot of Haruhi Suzumiya figures and merchandise in general. The series had crazy popularity when it just came out, but nowadays if you ask people about this series or character I guess only 50% really watched it or know about it... Some of the Figma's though, they kept their price or they have risen quite a bit.
If I apply my own "rule" and only buy characters and series where I'm fan of, if a figure ends up dropping in price I at least won't regret it, because I like the character and want to support the series/artist anyways. :)


Yep, most overpriced Suzumiya's figures ended in the bin, with some exceptions. I share a similar rule. If I know I did my best to get it at a decent price at that moment, I feel I did what I could, so no regret. Anyway, that happens with anything we buy. There's more chance a PCV collection will keep it's value than a car in 5 years!
3 years ago
0pt
sailormatlac (3 years ago) #4342357Talking about Koto prompted me to repair my old Kotobukiya Sailor Moon GK. I'd say their "family-oriented" vibe makes them less problematic to exhibit!!! ;-)
Aftermarket prices are indeed fun to track. As you pointed out, there's habitually two steps. The initial aftermarket price is driven by hype or unhype. Then 2 or 3 years later (sometimes more), the price readjust itself when the series is no more the new kid on the block. It still have to learn a lot about the general trends, but it is quite hard to predict. I remember this item ITEM #52 used to cost at least 200% her initial price in the first month after release. Nowadays, you can find her easily at about 1500Y which is dirt cheap (well, this applies to all Max Factory's Suzumiya line up).
It's why I sometimes refrain from buying a figure I want but which isn't a priority and wait a few year later when it has lost all its value. Unfortunately, it doesn't always happen that way.


Ah, most Koto GK's seem to be quite rare nowadays. I hope to own one, one day too!

Hrrm, your example happened to a lot of Haruhi Suzumiya figures and merchandise in general. The series had crazy popularity when it just came out, but nowadays if you ask people about this series or character I guess only 50% really watched it or know about it... Some of the Figma's though, they kept their price or they have risen quite a bit.

If I apply my own "rule" and only buy characters and series where I'm fan of, if a figure ends up dropping in price I at least won't regret it, because I like the character and want to support the series/artist anyways. :)
3 years ago
0pt
Maakie (3 years ago) #4319102Yeah, right? I mean their latest figure I just pre-ordered ITEM #338779 for 7470 yen, which is with especially the rate of the yen to euro really good for me! Also quite some detail is going on with a nice base design. Any other manufacturer would probably ask 11-13K for something like this nowadays...
About the sexy part...with the first BMG from then I was actually a bit let-down as she was made way more sexy than the character is in the series ITEM #42095 ... But in general Kotobukiya is less sexualized, yes. :P
I think it's really interesting to follow figures on the aftermarket. Take my Calne for example ITEM #162402 Right after release she dropped almost 50% and is currently at almost 200% of her release price. You can't explain that!
Yeah same for me, with prize figures I also take gambles quite a bit by pre-ordering from artwork or unpainted prototype only. If it's a let-down then, oh well...didn't spend a fortune on it. ;)
I'm also trying to keep it to a few themes and series and have been trying to sell/trade a lot of my other items, but it keeps being hard to resist some non-list items every once in a while. ;)


Talking about Koto prompted me to repair my old Kotobukiya Sailor Moon GK. I'd say their "family-oriented" vibe makes them less problematic to exhibit!!! ;-)

Aftermarket prices are indeed fun to track. As you pointed out, there's habitually two steps. The initial aftermarket price is driven by hype or unhype. Then 2 or 3 years later (sometimes more), the price readjust itself when the series is no more the new kid on the block. It still have to learn a lot about the general trends, but it is quite hard to predict. I remember this item ITEM #52 used to cost at least 200% her initial price in the first month after release. Nowadays, you can find her easily at about 1500Y which is dirt cheap (well, this applies to all Max Factory's Suzumiya line up).

It's why I sometimes refrain from buying a figure I want but which isn't a priority and wait a few year later when it has lost all its value. Unfortunately, it doesn't always happen that way.
3 years ago
0pt
sailormatlac (3 years ago) #4269556I also don't understand the cold treatment against Kotobukiya. There are not doing exuberant pieces of art, but their figures are generally honest for the price. I bought a lot of their garage kits back in the days and it was always top notch, well engineered and fun to assemble. And their products are generally less sexy, which is sometimes a good thing.
We all have the same problem about paying very high price for figures that get binned a few months or year laters for no apparent reason. Always hard to tell before hand. Though I perfectly understand the pre-order necessity, it also makes every buy almost a gamble.
I consider prize figures the best deal out there. You can get very decent figures for 8$ to 18$ and most of them don't look silly. Also, they dare to do a lot of characters from many series. And when they turn out to be bad, the economic loss is negligeable.
True, there's no point in buying every cute figure out there. I'm not immune to that and used to buy what I found cute many years ago. You quickly learn "cute" shouldn't be a criteria while dealing with this hobby! I've learned to keep the collection centered around a few major themes. I tell myself there's a lot of people to buy the things I can't and they will post great pictures to enjoy.


Yeah, right? I mean their latest figure I just pre-ordered ITEM #338779 for 7470 yen, which is with especially the rate of the yen to euro really good for me! Also quite some detail is going on with a nice base design. Any other manufacturer would probably ask 11-13K for something like this nowadays...

About the sexy part...with the first BMG from then I was actually a bit let-down as she was made way more sexy than the character is in the series ITEM #42095 ... But in general Kotobukiya is less sexualized, yes. :P

I think it's really interesting to follow figures on the aftermarket. Take my Calne for example ITEM #162402 Right after release she dropped almost 50% and is currently at almost 200% of her release price. You can't explain that!

Yeah same for me, with prize figures I also take gambles quite a bit by pre-ordering from artwork or unpainted prototype only. If it's a let-down then, oh well...didn't spend a fortune on it. ;)

I'm also trying to keep it to a few themes and series and have been trying to sell/trade a lot of my other items, but it keeps being hard to resist some non-list items every once in a while. ;)
3 years ago
0pt
Maakie (3 years ago) #4223360The proportions and the way she holds the sword? It's just so akward all togther.
Yeah, it also depends a lot on the experience and quality of the sculptor.
Oh lol, I do get bashed a lot. But they don't bash me for not liking something (such as Alter), they rather bash me for the brands I do like. For example, I'm a big fan of Kotobukiya. Their quality isn't the best always, but they have the best price and quality ratio on the market currently and they also dare to make a lot of figures other brands wouldn't do (such as male protagonists). People get mad a lot of times when they hear that, because they think the figures are not up to par with figures that are 2x the price...yeah, you read that right.
The worst part is that the most expensive Alter I own dropped 50% in price on the aftermarket... I actually want to get rid of her, but with such a low value I feel bad about it. I overpayed so greatly for something I didn't like in the end... A lot of prize figures get talked bad about, but I have been impressed by a lot too! Furyu especially is making really big improvements!
Nowadays I try to buy only from series and characters I like and I don't buy figures because their prototypes look pretty. I think that was what caused most disappointments in the past for me, because I was fixated too much on quality.


I also don't understand the cold treatment against Kotobukiya. There are not doing exuberant pieces of art, but their figures are generally honest for the price. I bought a lot of their garage kits back in the days and it was always top notch, well engineered and fun to assemble. And their products are generally less sexy, which is sometimes a good thing.

We all have the same problem about paying very high price for figures that get binned a few months or year laters for no apparent reason. Always hard to tell before hand. Though I perfectly understand the pre-order necessity, it also makes every buy almost a gamble.

I consider prize figures the best deal out there. You can get very decent figures for 8$ to 18$ and most of them don't look silly. Also, they dare to do a lot of characters from many series. And when they turn out to be bad, the economic loss is negligeable.

True, there's no point in buying every cute figure out there. I'm not immune to that and used to buy what I found cute many years ago. You quickly learn "cute" shouldn't be a criteria while dealing with this hobby! I've learned to keep the collection centered around a few major themes. I tell myself there's a lot of people to buy the things I can't and they will post great pictures to enjoy.
3 years ago
0pt
sailormatlac (3 years ago) #4175720Weird pose indeed! Hard to tell what's exactly wrong, just plainly... wrong.
I had the same experiences with all other scale models I collect and build. Most of the time, my judgement is on a per case basis. There's too much parameters that can affect the final product. It's only that some companies have better hit or miss ratio... but they aren't perfect.
Most people want to be on the winner's side by association. They do so by worshipping brand names as paragons of virtue. At least people here don't bash you for sharing strong opinions. And yes, I also bought some Alter figures on reputation and felt they didn't match up the expectation. And I was greatly impressed by some Sega prize... At least, that's the fun thing in this hobby, it's hard to predict what's going to turn out well.



The proportions and the way she holds the sword? It's just so akward all togther.

Yeah, it also depends a lot on the experience and quality of the sculptor.

Oh lol, I do get bashed a lot. But they don't bash me for not liking something (such as Alter), they rather bash me for the brands I do like. For example, I'm a big fan of Kotobukiya. Their quality isn't the best always, but they have the best price and quality ratio on the market currently and they also dare to make a lot of figures other brands wouldn't do (such as male protagonists). People get mad a lot of times when they hear that, because they think the figures are not up to par with figures that are 2x the price...yeah, you read that right.

The worst part is that the most expensive Alter I own dropped 50% in price on the aftermarket... I actually want to get rid of her, but with such a low value I feel bad about it. I overpayed so greatly for something I didn't like in the end... A lot of prize figures get talked bad about, but I have been impressed by a lot too! Furyu especially is making really big improvements!

Nowadays I try to buy only from series and characters I like and I don't buy figures because their prototypes look pretty. I think that was what caused most disappointments in the past for me, because I was fixated too much on quality.
3 years ago
0pt
Maakie (3 years ago) #4152705With my opinion about Griffon, it's a lot of times more about weird posing and/or outfits than the quality. For example ITEM #167470 is just so awkward....
You see that with a lot of places where figure collectors come together. There is some sort of group-thinking about how a certain manufacturer is good or bad. For example here on MFC I always see crazy praising for Alter. I once got an Alter figure with quite some defects and disappointments and made a review from it and suddenly all those Alter-praisers were nowhere to be found... :)
For me my first contact was their prepainted resin and polystones and those are still nice, even many years after their release. :)


Weird pose indeed! Hard to tell what's exactly wrong, just plainly... wrong.

I had the same experiences with all other scale models I collect and build. Most of the time, my judgement is on a per case basis. There's too much parameters that can affect the final product. It's only that some companies have better hit or miss ratio... but they aren't perfect.

Most people want to be on the winner's side by association. They do so by worshipping brand names as paragons of virtue. At least people here don't bash you for sharing strong opinions. And yes, I also bought some Alter figures on reputation and felt they didn't match up the expectation. And I was greatly impressed by some Sega prize... At least, that's the fun thing in this hobby, it's hard to predict what's going to turn out well.
3 years ago
0pt
sailormatlac (3 years ago) #4059755Thanks Maakie. Griffon deserves the hate many times, but it seems many people are also blinded by their hate. I stumbled upon a review of Kirino on Reddit and they were trashing the figure saying the sculpt was bad, the paint job horrific and the seamlines inacceptable. There was some kind of consensus about it being the "typical" Griffon trainwreck. Honestly, such slandering is far to be objective and the pictures tell another story. I suspect these people didn't see the figure in real life and are just trolling for the fun of it.
My first contact with Griffon was their old garage kits. Most were full of intricate details and generally well done for the time.


With my opinion about Griffon, it's a lot of times more about weird posing and/or outfits than the quality. For example ITEM #167470 is just so awkward....

You see that with a lot of places where figure collectors come together. There is some sort of group-thinking about how a certain manufacturer is good or bad. For example here on MFC I always see crazy praising for Alter. I once got an Alter figure with quite some defects and disappointments and made a review from it and suddenly all those Alter-praisers were nowhere to be found... :)

For me my first contact was their prepainted resin and polystones and those are still nice, even many years after their release. :)
3 years ago
0pt
Maakie (3 years ago) #4046897Oh my...I'm completely impressed. And then also if you take in account that she is so huge!!!
A lot of people give Griffon hate, but they seem to be especially better in quality with their higher-end figures. I own multiple of their polystone figures and those are almost perfect in my eyes. :)
Nice review with a lot of good pictures! ^^


Thanks Maakie. Griffon deserves the hate many times, but it seems many people are also blinded by their hate. I stumbled upon a review of Kirino on Reddit and they were trashing the figure saying the sculpt was bad, the paint job horrific and the seamlines inacceptable. There was some kind of consensus about it being the "typical" Griffon trainwreck. Honestly, such slandering is far to be objective and the pictures tell another story. I suspect these people didn't see the figure in real life and are just trolling for the fun of it.

My first contact with Griffon was their old garage kits. Most were full of intricate details and generally well done for the time.
3 years ago
View more comments