Friday 4 May 2012

Toybox REVIEW: Bandai Super Robot Chogokin Magiking


Bandai's Super Robot Chogokin line continues its mission to provide smaller, articulate but non-transforming Super Sentai robots to fans. The fourth entry comes in the form of Magiking (or Mystic Titan megazord to the Power Rangers fans), from Mahou Sentai Magiranger and Power Rangers Mystic Force.

Upon taking the figure out of its packaging, you'll notice that the wings aren't attached to the main body. The wings peg easily into the body, and can be removed without hassle should you prefer posing your Magiking taking up less shelf space - because that wingspan is HUGE. Articulate as ever, Magiking's full range of motion stretches to its hat (yes, the hat is indeed articulated, moving up and down like in the show), head, shoulders, arms (at the top and then two points around the elbow), hands, waist, legs, knees and feet. The wing articulation is by no means bad, but I personally felt it could be better as there is no form of joint to move them up and down at the end that connects to back, only forward and backward. The larger part of the wings requires a little extra force for the full range of articulation, as the shell hides a hidden ball joint (bit with a very limited range of motion) which may go unnoticed if only gently moved.

That isn't to say be really forceful with toy, because out of the four SRC figures I own this definitely feels like the most fragile. The green piece of the skirt feels incredible brittle and like it could snap if brushed the wrong way, and the forearm articulation is incredibly fiddle. In addition to this, while there isn't anything truly wrong with it, the hip articulation feels a bit restricted by the skirt pieces (also made of that brittle plastic).

Due to the sheer size of Magiking because of it wings, the accessory count seems a little lower than his predecessor. That being said the toy still comes with everything you'd expect to see with Magiking - its signature sword the KingCalibur, a variety of extra hands and a thin plastic magic circle depicting all five symbols of the Ozu family (with a small plastic stand to hold it upright). The magic circle makes a nice little display piece, but takes up a lot of room. Now Magiking's box art may tease of flying poses, but a Tamashii stand is not included with the figure. Adding insult to injury, an arm and connector port for said stand IS included. While usually I can get over Bandai's inability to include stands with their figures, this particular instance irks me because the toy was constantly promoted in poses which required that stands and I consider the wings to be an integral part of Magiking's design.

Unlike Dekarobo, Magiking does not come packed with the Gokaiger version of the Magidragon which can be used with SRC GokaiOh to make MagiGokaiOh. This comes as a surprise given that there are plenty of images of an SRC MagiGokaiOh, so what Bandai's plans for this figure (be it an additional full release, add on pack or exclusive) are yet to be known.

While I personally feel Magiking is the best designed of the four Super Sentai mecha released in the line thus far, its fiddly nature means that it falls short of perfection and ranks second to Dekaranger Robo. Had Bandai had included a stand with the figure I'd probably raise the toy up a notch. Still, Magiking is more than a worthy addition to anyone's collection and great for anyone looking for a smaller, sturdy and articulated Super Sentai mecha who's willing to sacrifice the combining.

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