Friday, November 28, 2014

New gunpla haul

Got a whole bunch of kits this time.
The Ex Exbein looks especially interesting, even more so considering that there is only 1 in depth review out there of the kit itself! But I will leave it alone for a while, as I will start with the Build Burning Gundam.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Black Pegasus Arrives!

If you are a Myth Cloth collector, then you know of the infamous Black Saints double packs, which have ridiculous prices that go from the 30,000 yen mark or higher, so fuck that.
That's where the bootleg products come in. Sure, they are not official, and their quality is subpar compared to Bandai's, nevertheless, it provides you with the option to acquire a figure that is almost identical to the real thing for a fraction of the price. It is a good purchase?
Honestly? Yes, it is. This version of the Black Pegasus made by King Model is really, really nice once put together, hell, I think I like it more than the normal version, as the black and blue highlights of the armor are so cool. Just a few points about it, starting with the negatives:
- The right foot is extremely loose.
- The 2 halves of the helmet do not fit properly.
- The little wings of the helmet and boots are VERY fragile, not to mention they do not fit all that well in their respective pieces of the armor, making glaringly obvious they are separated components, you have to be very careful when you attach them.
- Overall, the quality of the hair and body is quite low, as there are nub marks all over the place. However, since the highlight is the armor, this fact can be overlooked.

Now, for the positives:

- The armor has a very nice glossy finish. Combined with the metallic blue and turquoise highlights it is quite a nice display piece. The red eyes of the Pegasus in the helmet look even better than in the normal version!
- The decisive point here is that the diecast content is almost identical to the real thing. The only exception are the shoulder armors, which are made of plastic, although for some weird reason, you get 2 pairs, one slightly bigger than the other.
- As if that was not enough, this figure provides you with extra diecast pieces for the normal Pegasus V1 figure made by King Model, how awesome is that?
- Price, simply put, is MUCH cheaper than the original Myth Cloth.

I'm quite satisfied with this purchase, highly recommended if you do not want (or are able to in the first place) to shell the 70,000 (!) yen or so you would need to get the 4 Bronze Black Saints, minus Phoenix, as that one was a regular release and is quite easy to get. Perhaps the only other extra they should have added are the spare pieces of the Sagittarius Gold Cloth he carries and loses when Seiya defeats him.

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Gensou Shoujo Taisen

So, the other day I came across this game, I was a bit skeptic at first, but I soon came to enjoy it thanks to the SRW similarities!
Basically, this a Touhou strategy game that mixes the basic mechanics of the SRW games with some of the former, so, many elements will be familiar to you if you have ever played the ever awesome crossover games with mechas.
So far, 3 games have been released, only the first one was fully translated, but if you play it, you will quickly figure out the other 2, although there are some worthy elements to mention.
One of the most important differences with the vanilla SRW games is the so called "danmaku fields", these are basically auras put up by the enemies that have several penalty effects on your units. The ones of the common enemies are nothing special, but those of the bosses can go from annoying to downright pure, utter bullshit, so approach and placement take an important role when tackling the stages.
Second, most of the bosses, even in the second and third games, barely have 30k HP, the issue here is that as you advance in the game, these guys start having from 3 to 5 spellcards. They active once you take them down for the first time, allowing them to put a usually large danmaku field that unlocks new attacks and abilities for them. The boss in question is revived the same number of times as spellcards it has, so, some of them are damage sponges that can go up for the 120k HP mark. You can wait them for a few turns for the spellcards to burn out, but the idea is to defeat each and every one of them, if nothing else just to be able to brag about it in the records.
The OST and animations are quite good, even more so in the third game, which is packed with SRW references, going from either Gundam to Getter Robo Armageddon. This game in particular has a couple of really crazy stages that can be insanely difficult in the "Lunatic" setting, that is, if you are a bad dude enough to try it and a real badass to reach them.
Anyways, I was pleasantly surprised with these titles, and I think they are worth for any SRW fan out there to check them out if you want a real challenge for a change, compared to how easy most SRW have become lately (the Z series for example).

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Fate UBW 03

So far, this has been great.
The adaptation added a couple of scenes that were absent in the visual novel, mainly in the form of Rin jobbing against Ilya and Saber actually killing Berserker.
Still, I think the scene where Archer nukes the graveyard lacked something, as in the novel, Shirou makes it very clear that Archer deliberately tried to kill him along with Berserker just for the heck of it. Here, it just seemed as a mere coincidence due to Saber being a dumb idiot and not moving away.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Vigna Zirah

Another unit used by Crossbone Vanguard in the U.C. year 123. The Vigna Zirah is the upgraded version of the Vigna Ghina (the suit Berah Ronah used in the F91 movie), with the major difference that it incorporates the VSBR technology in the backpack.

The design of this suit caught my eye, reason why I decided to purchase the model kit. It also helps that it was extremely cheap (less than 1,000 yen!), but how good it is?
Well, for starters, the kit is really old, so it is definitely blown out of the water by the recent HGs in terms of articulation. Similarly, it comes molded in only 2 colors, red and, surprisingly, gunmetal, so it will require some paint if you want it to shine. Still, once put together, it is quite a nice sight due to how fierce it looks with that red color scheme.
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All the red was painted with Tamiya Mica Red, as the plastic out of the box looks very toyish. There's also a whole bunch of details such as vents and thrusters all over the place, so you better ready your brush, along some gray and silver colors.The VSBRs in particular are the pieces that need the most work, as they come completely molded in red.
The kit provides you with a large sticker sheet with some cool warning marks and emblems, such as the Crossbone emblem in the forehead and that "Z" in the left shoulder, however, they are very large, so I suggest you to trim them before applying them.
As I said before, articulation is VERY limited, so you can't really strike that much of a pose with this model. Similarly, none of my display bases and connectors were able to hold it up, so, despite wanting an aerial pose, I had to go with a simple stand up pose. Nevertheless, I'm quite satisfied with the result I got.
The rifle in case you didn't notice, is the one of my MG F91, as the one that comes with this model is very plain looking, reason why I decided to replace it. It helps that the hands come with articulated fingers in order to insert the index in the trigger and hold it up.
Surprisingly, the beam shield can rotate, so you get a little more range in the way you want to pose it. Unfortunately, it is SO BIG that it will inevitably get obstructed by the shoulder of the mobile suit, so that also limits quite a bit the range of motion of the arm if you display it with the beam shield deployed.
The VSBRs can be deployed forward thanks to a double joint mechanism they have to connect to the backpack. They can open up to reveal the handles for the hands to grasp them. They are perhaps the most elaborated part of the model.
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I'm particularly fond of the head thanks to the clear blue visor it sports, which has a reflective silver sticker behind it, reason why it is so shiny. You get the option to build the head with a pair of eyes and a V-fin to get a Gundam looking head, but honestly, the visor looks much more striking. I also used some leftovers from green stickers for the sensors above the forehead and at the back of the head.
In general, the Vigna Zirah is pretty good kit despite its age. Its bulkiness and color scheme certainly distinguish it as something much more than a standard grunt. While I recommend it, you will need to pour some effort on it to make it really shine.