Tuesday 2 September 2014

Toybox REVIEW: Ressha Sentai ToQger Minipla Build DaiOh & Drill Ressha

ToQger Minipla Build Ressha/Build DaiOh

After brief detour into the world of additional armaments, the Ressha Sentai ToQger minipla candy toy line returns with its third mecha. The team now has its sixth member in former Shadow Zaram who has now taken the name Akira Nijino. After seeing a rainbow he left the Shadow Line to become a Rainbow Line maintenance worker, eventually becoming the appropriately themed/coloured ToQ #6. So naturally an orange construction themed ranger needs an orange construction themed train, which Akira gets in the form of the Build Ressha - an impressive double-decker train able to transform into the giant robot Build DaiOh.

Four brand new boxes of joy

Collect and combineModels and candy - a perfect combo

The Build DaiOh wave consists of a total of four boxes, with eight boxes making up an entire case. So if you're buying this guy by the case load, it means you'll have one extra spare or to sell. The Build Ressha naturally takes up the bulk of the set, with its pieces spread across three boxes. Finally the last box is the Drill Ressha, a separate train still closely associated with ToQ #6. Boxes 1-3 are moulded in bright orange and grey plastic, while the fourth is moulded in dark blue. And of course, your candy fix is as usual supplemented with one piece of soda candy per box.

As usual any photos from beyond this point will be of my own painted kit. For comparisons with a clean, stickered version please visit here.


Up close with the Build Ressha

Track repair train frontTrack repair train back

Bulldozer train frontBulldozer train back

Three boxes already suggested that the Build Ressha is going to be the heftiest individual train released so far, but even then I don't think I was prepared for just how good it looks when put altogether. Despite being the shortest of the three main "rail lines" the ToQger minipla has released so far, it fares pretty well against sets that are made up of five and four boxes respectively. The Build Ressha is technically made up of two separate trains - the first is a track repair train which features an articulated shovel, moulded railroad crane and caboose. The second is a longer bulldozer-style train with ploughs at either end.

All aboard!

Splitting the trainsFunctioning crane arm

While the boxes display these trains as the smaller one pulling the longer one along in a line, the show instead has the smaller train sit on top of the larger one to create a double-decker train. The minipla model can indeed pull this off, but sadly the two trains don't tab together anywhere other than in the middle (which is actually the waist joint for the robot mode). So rather than have the smaller train sit neatly on top, it kind of just sticks out there with a very visible gap between the two of them. It's not a massive issue since at least the model CAN pull off the look, but with the amount of tabs and holes over the thing it's difficult to believe there wasn't a better way of fastening the two together. 

Carriage connections

Aside the rainbow lineThree lines together

Model painters will be pleased to know that the Build Ressha features mostly moulded details, so the only stickers required are two located at the very top of the trap (either side of the crane/robot head). While the stickers do their job for anyone who prefers the decal look, the model is still missing plenty of paint apps that can be filled in. The most notable areas include any silver detailing and the black areas that surround the orange sections on the longer/bottom train. If you're one to paint the entire thing there's quite a lot to do here, making the building process last much longer than the 5-10 minutes it takes to actually put the thing together.


Ressha Gattai

As is the case with every sixth Ranger mecha, the Build Ressha also has the ability to transform into an individual robot. Build DaiOh is a particularly interesting one, because despite seemingly like a single vehicle the fact there are two trains present obviously qualify it to be a combining robot, as Akira's callout of "Ressha Gattai" during the transformation sequence would suggest. Regardless the transformation is INCREDIBLY simple. When the smaller train is on top of the larger one, the two sides of the bottom train swing down, then rotate at the knees to form the legs (flipping up the ends to form feet). the ends of the top train swing down to become that arms, and then the head simply turns to face the rest of the body. Incredibly simple, but show accurate.

Like most minpla Sentai robots Build DaiOh sports an impressive range of articulation, including a rotating head, shoulders (both 360 motion at the torso connection and up/down at the upper arm), hinged elbows, working hips, knees and feet. The big wedged feet can be a bit difficult to sit flat on a surface in the more dynamic poses, but the proportions of the robot are excellent. Possibly the best ToQger has offered so far.

Build DaiOh FrontBuild DaiOh back

Ready for battleBucket break!

With all the the ToQger mecha sharing the same style of interchangeable limbs, this also means that a whole bunch of different combos are possible! The show has already showed off variations with ToQOh's arms and the Tank Ressha (both pictured below), but rest assured Build DaiOh is compatible with every different arm Ressha that's been released...and Build DaiOh's arms are also compatible with both ToQOh and Diesel-Oh!

Something's different...

Call on the policeThe track's on fire

Tank troubleShielding the cars?


ToQger Minipla Drill Ressha

Featuring a spinning drill*Insert inevitable Gurren Lagann quote here*

Also included in this wave is the single box Drill Ressha, which is an auxiliary train closely related to ToQ #6. Why is this? Well in reality the Drill Ressha was once in fact the Drill Darkliner! This former Shadow Line is also what Akira uses to power up his personal weapon, the Yudou Breaker.

As a single box model kit the Drill Ressha is an incredibly simple build, only consisting of one carriage. What makes it stand out from the other Resshas though is its gimmick function, which is a little bit more technical than just a moving arm or gun. Thanks to tiny cogs inside the framework of the model, the drill actually spins as the train is pushed along the floor! Very nifty indeed.

The stickers do an excellent job of covering all the Drill Ressha's details (aside from the majority of the black base - a common thing with all the ToQger minipla) and the drill's plastic isn't quite the sickly yellow the packaging makes it out to be. Still, this isn't too hard of a model to paint (especially thanks to the moulded caution stripe detailing) and the drill really shines with a lick of proper gold paint.

Shadows sticking together

Crane-Drill Double CrashShiny drills

As an auxiliary Ressha, the Drill Ressha can be used as an alternate arm on any of the three current ToQger mecha. Arguably it works best with Build DaiOh, simply because it's technically his train and goes great with that scoop arm on the other side of the mecha. That said, ToQOh and Diesel-Oh look pretty awesome with it too. Just further goes to show that you can't go wrong with a drill for an arm. In all instances attaching the arm requires first removing the left forearm (or right, but in-show it's always been left so far) of the mecha and replacing it accordingly. Like the Shield Ressha from the last wave, it only plugs into a single arm and has no double-arm armament formation like the other auxiliary trains.

Who needs a sword when you can have a drillSpin on


ToQger Minipla ChoCho ToQ-DaiOh

With another giant robot in hand, it means that yet another giant super combination is possible! This one is rather appropriately named ChoCho ToQ-DaiOh, and before long will be giving the likes of Engine G12 and Samurai HaOh a run for their money in terms of sheer clusterfuckery. Forming this combination is largely building upon what's already established with Cho ToQOh, with Build DaiOh requiring quite a bit of parts shifting to get it the way you need it. The arms and leg section are removed, while the shoulders are detached only to be combined and reattached under the torso. 

Next the legs are positioned into a rather fetching wheeled platform for the giant monstrosity, while the torso section is plugged in between the shoulders and head of the robot. The hook piece from Build DaiOh is attached to the combo head, giving it a brand visor piece to cover the original head. Finally Build DaiOh's arms combine together, with the sword plugging into the top to make a giant staff of death similar to the one used by Great Go-Buster.

The monstrosity arrives

Move over G12And you Ha-Oh...

That's a big weaponFear my one pose!

So what is there to say about ChoCho ToQ-DaiOh? Well it's big, colourful, imposing and...can't really do very much at all. Like most mecha that pile on as many components as possible, the minipla model is fairly stable thanks to the sheer amount of plugs involved. But any attempts to get posing out of it either simply won't happen or cause the robot to fall apart under its own weight. There's no waist joint, no head joint and thanks to the platform not much you can do with the feet either. The knees still have some poseability to them, but doing so kinda just makes it look like ChoCho ToQ-DaiOh is skiing rather than slashing down evil.

Shoulders and elbows is about all you get here. Which still puts it about what the DX version can do, but admittedly not by a whole lot.

Adding a shieldChoCho ToQ-DaiOh gets the point

Police Mode!Probably causing more fires than it extinguishes

And if the combination of nine trains isn't enough for you, it's still possible to throw a few more into the mix! With the two arms free of anything, all of the auxiliary Ressha can still be plugged in as normally. Of course, the minipla also have plenty of untapped potential when it comes to fan modes and various other places additional pieces can plug in. So if you aren't happy with this rather underwhelming combo, do a bit of experimenting and you might come up with something else that's a bit more to your tastes.

Do you have them all so far?

Despite a rather lacklustre combined mode with ToQOh and Diesel-Oh, Build DaiOh (and the Drill Ressha) are an absolutely superb set of models. They don't feel as small as previous Ressha releases and are appealing to both beginners (easy to build and stickers cover most details) and more advanced modellers (lots to paint). The proportions on Build DaiOh are excellent, and the articulation is to the usual standard many have come to expect from the Super Sentai minipla line. It's a really great kit, and as the mecha of our first official orange ranger in decades is all the more special.

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