Review: Now here’s a toy with balls! (for shoulders)
Packaging & Extras (4.5/5)
The toy comes packaged in a box with a large window letting you see the goods inside and an advertisement wrapped around it. A quick laundry list of what you get:
1) Full strike OR super parts
2) 4x missile boxes
3) 5x fixed posed hands (L/R gun grip, L/R open grasp, R knife-hand/salute)
5) a disc that replaces the center section of the gun to make it appear collapsed for attachment to an arm
6) a display stand (Base, long arm, short arm, black revoltech joint as adapter).
If this toy were a premium toy with a premium box it’d get a perfect score. There’s some paper sleeve that goes around it which seems silly and gratuitous and a few informational items/advertisements included within. I hear some other Revoltech offerings come with even better goodies but I couldn’t find any reason to complain. Well… a gun strap would have been nice.
Charm & Collectability (2.5/5)
Revoltechs aren’t rare, they don’t contain diecast, and they don’t transform. So, this isn’t exactly a collectors item. These are considered fairly decent toys though so there is a market out there for them and some people are known to be Revoltech completists. You should be aware that these are small, almost Gashapon small. Check out the size comparison below. Here’s a list of all the Revoltech Macross toys excluding the transformable Yamaguchi line that came later:
VF-1J Hikaru Custom Super Valk, 1,900YEN, September 2007
VF-1S Focker STrike Valk, 1,900YEN, October 2007
VF-1A Hikaru Custom Super Valk, 1,900YEN, November 2007
VF-1J Max Custom Super Valk (Limited), 1,900YEN, May 2008
Regult, 1,900YEN, May 2008
YF-19, 1,900YEN, June 2008
YF-21, 1,900YEN, June 2008
VF-1J Miria Custom Super Valk (Hobby Japan Exclusive), 1.900YEN, October 2008
Sculpt, Detail, and Paint (6/10)
Overall the Revoltech does a fine job of emulating the mecha despite the somewhat garrish joints in a few locations. The shoulder joints are particularly cumbersome to the eye and once you’ve noticed the neck joint you might find it to be a problem too. The attachments for the super/strike parts are all done via peg and hole and aren’t intrusive to the overall look of the toy as demonstrated below. Obviously this toy doesn’t try to be the best representation of the line art, it tries to look super dynamic even when you’re not doing much with it. You won’t find clear plastic inserts or anything like that here but the paint apps are decent (though the QC is poor).
For a non-transforming toy on this scale I’d have to say this is a great score. Sure, there are no nifty tricks, no suave transformation, no landing gears, or any of the other stuff you’d look for on a more complete VF-1 toy. The toy stands fine on its own with or without the additional parts and can do pretty much anything once on the stand. It strives to be the most dynamic battroid toy out there and I think it accomplishes that goal. The strike gun also contains a revolver joint. Kaiyodo keeps it simple and it works. There are a few round holes that the super parts plug which might not be the most pleasing to the eye but their unobtrusive and they work well.
Durability & Build (6.5/10)
This toy isn’t going to be easy for you to break but the initial build quality is questionable. There was a paint over-spray on the eye of my VF-1J and the VF-1S came packaged with two left gun hands and no right one… meaning in my Revoltech universe Roy is left-handed. The hand issue seems to be prevalent amongst all Revoltech releases and I hear paint issues are also fairly common. The plastic used isn’t the most rigid stuff in the world either which might leave you feeling your toy is a bit rubbery but not nearly so bad as Kaiyodo’s gashapon set which featured plastic so rubbery it literally tore in two sometimes instead of a joint moving. Like the Toynami 1/100 VF-1 series and other Revoltechs this is a completely snap together toy so if you try to get too extreme with your posing you’re more likely to simply disconnect a part than break something. Some people like this as it means they can strive harder for that elusive perfect pose where other people will cringe thinking that just sounds horribly cheap. I also hear a good number of these come with UN Spacy painted in the wrong direction on the leg armors.
This thing is a lot of fun to pose, there can be no doubt. With or without the stand you can challenge it over and over again to do crazier and crazier maneuvers. Kaiyodo’s Revoltech joint system tends to hold up well and you won’t find limbs repositioning themselves under their own weight.
Total Score (34.5/50)
So the only real competition in the $20 range for Kaiyodo was Toynami’s 1/100 VF-1 and Yamato’s GnuDou VF-1 series. No, Toynami’s VF-1 “Superposeable” line should not be considered competition since the Revoltech actually is poseable. The Toynami 1/100 figure is larger and nearly a perfect transformation toy but it’s no where near as articulated or slick looking in battroid mode as the Kaiyodo Revoltech or Yamato GnuDou. While the Revoltech and Toynami 1/100 toys come with missiles, fixed-posed hands, a collapsing gun with removable parts, and a display stand, the Toynami adds individual style missiles on a tree while the Kaiyodo features full super or strike parts. I gave the slight edge to the Kaiyodo overall as it feels like a product with better finish but a lot of people will have no interest in it at all due to its lack of transformation (after all, the ability for the VF-1 to transform is a large part of what makes it so cool). The Yamato GnuDou figures are an awesome alternative if the sight of the Revoltech joints bother you or you prefer your valks to look more like the line art. If you want the most dynamic battroid toy, this is your winner.
Original Post: March 8, 2008
Updated March 23, 2016: Added high resolution photos, added marketing photos for additional variants, updated list of releases.
Updated April 27, 2016: Added HD video review.