I was looking forward to my first trip to the anime hub with my new Speed Grapher (see previous post). There was supposed to be tonnes of new good stock. There were lots of new stuff, but they were generally disappointing.
I didn’t want to ask the guys at Latendo if they allowed photos, to avoid a repeat of yesterday’s rejection. So I just secretly took three from outside the store. The pictures are blurred, but you can make out what makes this store so popular. The only things I get from them are trading figures and gashapon, and ever since I stopped buying these, I haven’t been giving them money.
They charge high prices for the larger figurines, but they do get a good variety of merchandise. Some of the Wonderfest limited edition items are available here too, albeit expensive. What is best about this store though, is the fact they keep stocks of dated merchandise. Elsewhere, it’s difficult to purchase stuff that were released a year or two ago, but they might just have it here.
Main shop window. Basically, the place is packed Otaku-style.
See that Shin Angyo Onshi set by Yamato? That’s my new target.
A clear photo at last, this one shows the interior of the store a bit more.
I ordered the whole series of Shin Angyo Onshi from What! Comics and the full set of F. Compo from AZ Comics. And I discovered the owner of AZ Comics is my friend’s girlfriend. What the hell? So that was why he kept recommending the store to us? But she’s pretty nice so I get manga from her when I’m too lazy to source for it.
As for figurines, I was intending to buy the Samurai 7, FMP, 3D Petopeto sets. But they turned out to be pretty ugly. The Samurai 7 trading figures had terribly painted faces for most of the characters save for Kyuzo and the big robot, Kikunoji(?). And the set costs S$84. Bah.The FMP trading set, which I posted something on, was decent and affordable. I got to see it up close, and the standard of painting and moulding was really far inferior to a 1/8 PVC. While this is generally the case, there are some trading figures such as the FSN and Gundam Seed (I hate Seed) ones that have the same paint quality and detail as a 1/8. So I’ll break my “no trading fig and gashapon” rule only for these.
Getting trading figures also mean you have to get the set, and thus it takes up a lot more space and you also get characters you do not want. Yet it feels incomplete if you do not get all the characters. It’s a dilemma. They are also hard to clean because of sheer numbers.
The pictures online of the 3D PetoPeto set looked good. However, the actual product suffers from the same flaws as the Ichigo Mashimaro ones did. They had too much shine, thus look too plasticky. The skin colour was also a tad too yellowish for my liking.
But I saw the Dengeki Bunko Palm Characters set and it contained Kino, from Kino no Tabi! It also has Shana, Dokuro-chan, Iriya, Momo and other Dengeki heroines. But Kino is really cool and the little figure of her looked cute. The figure had her aiming her Persuader. I love girls with guns. It’s too bad I can only get her if there are leftovers, since these are sold in a set. I’m not interested in the rest.
The top left one is Kino. She’s cool.
Finally, I learnt something which I should have realised all along. KAIYODO has a US branch, so they will always release a US version for almost everything, just a few months later. I found this out the hard way, when I saw the US release of my expensive 6800 yen Kiddy Grade duo set to be priced at less than half of what I paid for it. AHHH! I will now cancel all my other Kaiyodo orders and wait for the US releases.
Another thing of interest is the new joint technology used in making action figures. Following the many complaints of ugly joints, it seems that future action figures will all use ball joints that are very inconspicious compared to their predecessors. Kaiyodo is releasing EVA action figures featuring this new joint system, but I’m not sure if Squareenix’s Playarts series will be following this too. They had better be, I just pre-ordered the FFXIII and FFX Playarts action figures.
I’m trying to set up a booth for my figurines to be photographed in. I’ve read up, asked around and tried setting up but the results aren’t satisfactory. It’s a lack of lighting, I think. My first model was the Good Smile Company Saki Chairman Cosplay 1/8 fig. She looks like a model, and is posing like one. I bought two acrylic boards as background. With my poor skill and settings, I had to photoshop the picture extensively to make it even look decent.
The lack of lighting is pretty serious, I even had to use flash for this picture. I really shouldn’t have to…