Observations & Critique: Imperfect Transformation… and execution
Packaging & Extras: (3/5)
Unlike the Bandai Third Mission pieces I reviewed previously, the Kaiyodo/Movic pieces come in individual boxes packaged within a large box as pictured above. Inside the individual boxes are pamphlets showing off the goods and little sealed baggies containing the merchandise. Some assembly is required (as you can see below) but it’s minimal and usually pretty easy to accomplish. Extras include spare sets of fixed-pose hands for the Battroid Hikaru Valkyrie and display stands for the transformable valkyries.
Charm & Collectibility: (3.5/5)
The Series 001 figures have become increasingly difficult to come by… in fact they may be considered downright hard at this point due largely to the popularity of the Regult. It seems Regults are tremendously popular amongst Gashapon collectors while still not generating enough interest for toy manufacturers (of larger scale) to really take notice. If these figures were being scored in this section individually I would score the Regult much higher than the rest but it seems the entire series does get a boost from its presence. Check out the pic below to get an idea for the scale of the figures (pictured with my standard AA battery). I had some fun with Regult in the pics below to also show why it seems to be such a fan favorite.
Sculpt, Detail, & Paint: Transformable Valkyries (5/10), Battroid Hik (7/10), Regult (9/10)
There are lots of issues to consider here. First, the transformable valkyries, while a cute idea, just don’t work in any mode. They’re downright hideous in battroid and only passable in the other two modes. The proportions are just awkward at times and the fact that the figure lacks articulation makes it impossible to find a pose where the whacky proportions are less visible. The Battroid Hikaru has a very cartoonish look and feel that isn’t bad but it’s slightly over done. The Regult is great looking in most respects, the proportions may be a bit off but it seems to me that it looks even more aggressive in the way it is presented here. One universal truth amongst these toys is that the paint job is pretty phenomenal. There’s weathering (it actually looks like shading) on the Battroid Hikaru, many transitions on the Regult, and nice detail and canopies on the transformable valks.
Design: Transformable Valkyries (5/10), Battroid Hikaru (5/10), Regult (8/10)
The transformable valkyries get points for being transformable, even if it is completely imperfect, but they don’t get too many points since the figure looks like an absolute compromise in every mode. Something needed to be added here to make the toy look natural in some position. The Battroid Hikaru comes pre-positioned somewhat awkwardly making it predisposed to dodging-type poses. I would imagine the goal here was to make the figure look extremely active so don’t try to go for any nonchalant or stoic poses. The Regult is absolutely stellar for a figure of this size. A few little tweaks or gimmicks would have garnered this toy a perfect score but even as it is it’s certainly above average.
Durability & Build (5/10)
Some things to be weary of: 1) The transformable valkyries have their intakes/hips attached to the body of the plane via a thin plastic rod. There’s really nothing holding this rod in which makes it easily removed, dropped, and lost (see pic of the CF without this rod below). The Battroid Hikaru seems made to break at every joint. The first time I tried to move a hip the leg instantly snapped clean off. All of these toys are made out of fairly sturdy feeling plastic (possibly vinyle but nothing nearly as soft as the Bandai figures) but some joints just don’t seem to want to work. I replaced my hip joints with a metal rod. Finally, all joints on the Battroid Valkyrie and the Regult are prone to becoming loose which quickly means no more cool posing for either figure since you’ll feel like you’ll need to prop them up. I’m already seeing this on one of the knees of my Regult and its barely been handled at all.
Articulation: Transformable Valkyries (2/10), Battroid Hik (5.5/10), Regult (8.5/10)
Posing the transformable valkyries consists of turning the head on its peg and moving the arms. There’s nothing more than that to expect, if you want to get really creative you can do something ridiculous like I did with the transformable Hikaru below. The Battroid Hikaru needs much better arms and hips to really be fun to pose and the elbows and feet are particular let-downs. The Battroid Hik does come with a functional waist and a swivel point mid-thigh which do help make a few cool poses. The Regult lacks only articulation in its weaponry, big toe, and boosters but is otherwise a ton of fun.. The Regult is completely capable of standing on one leg.
Total Score: Transformable Valkyries (23.5/50), Battroid Hikaru (28.5/50), Regult (36.5/50)
All of these toys score well below average with exception of the Regult which scores just slightly above it. The Regult really is a lot of fun and definitely helps lift the rest of this series up. The Regult also plays nice with Bandai’s Third Mission Glaug (see pic in gallery below).