Thursday 24 November 2016

Toybox REVIEW: Nendoroid Zelda (The Wind Waker Ver.)

When Good Smile Company dived into the wonderful world of Nintendo it’s fair to say that the Legend of Zelda was one of their biggest offerings – for proof look no further than the amount of re-releases Skyward Sword Link has had since his original release in 2013. Since then GSC and Max Factory have covered a number of Zelda games through the Nendoroid and Figma lines including Wind Waker, A Link Between Worlds, Majora’s Mask and (due for release next year) Twilight Princess. However as varied as this range may be, there was one significant problem – all the figures were of Link. However that’s finally no longer the case, as the Wind Waker version of Princess Zelda herself finally joins the Nendoroid line!

Princess Zelda comes packaged in the usual Nendoroid box, numbered an impressive 620 in the range and sporting a rather fetching pastel pink to go with the predominantly white colourscheme. Zelda is simply labelled as “The Wind Waker ver.” rather than “The Wind Waker HD”, but the box still retains the logo of the Wii U remake in the top left corner. The sides and back of the box feature a number of images of the figure in various poses, as well as a few of Wind Waker Link as this release also includes a few accessories for him.

There’s no denying that Nendoroids are an acquired taste. As far as quality goes you can’t fault them for the most part, but the super-deformed chibi aesthetic doesn’t suit every character they produce nor is it necessarily every collector’s thing. That said, this is the perfect line for Wind Waker characters. Princess Zelda is an almost perfect representation of her in-game model, with only a few adjustments made in terms of head and body size to fit in better with the Nendoroid aesthetic. The sculpt and paintwork is incredible, especially the dress’ central piece and crown. Although the dress completely covers her bottom half Zelda does indeed have moveable legs – although they don’t really provide enough balance for the figure to stand without support. As is the case with most Nendoroids Zelda only has minimal articulation, with ball joints in her neck, waist and hips and then standard rotating shoulders. 

The one minor flaw Zelda has is that the hole for the stand is in her back rather than her hair, and due to the size of those flowing locks it makes it difficult to attach the stand without having the head tilted down somewhat. If drilling a hole into the hair would spoil the look, then this would have been the perfect reason to bust out those fancy magnetic stands they use every so often again.

Zelda’s accessories include two alternate faceplates (a gasping and winking expression to go with her standard smiling face) as well as six additional arms in various poses. One of these arms also includes a Triforce symbol on the hand, highlighting the Princess as the bearer of the Triforce of Wisdom. Zelda is cute, sassy and with the range of parts of offer here can strike all sorts of poses.

This princess isn’t just for posing about helplessly though! Also included is Zelda’s signature light bow – a weapon synonymous with the character across her numerous versions in the Legend of Zelda universe. Together with the bow is a light arrow effect part, which plugs directly into one of Zelda’s right arms to form a surprisingly good aiming pose for a Nendoroid figure. The arrow doesn’t plug in especially firmly and is prone to falling out while fiddling about with the pose, but once you’re happy with it the arrow should stay in of its own accord. As has been the case with most weapons among the Zelda Figma and Nendoroids, the bow is able to split into two parts in order to fit it into the hand much easier.

Since Zelda doesn’t have a whole lot of options in terms of non-body accessories, she also comes with a few nice little pieces for Link as well. The most significant of these are of course the Master Sword and Mirror Shield – two important weapons when it comes to Link’s interactions with Zelda. The Master Sword pretty much speaks for itself, but the Mirror Shield is one of the final pieces of equipment found in the game and used together with Zelda’s arrows in the final battle with Ganondorf. The two weapons fit into Link’s hands in the usual fashion, however the shield’s handle is a pretty tight fit. On the more low-key side of things an additional left hand for Link displaying the Triforce symbol is also included – signifying Link as the bearer of the Triforce of Courage.

In exactly the same way Wind Waker Link was, Princess Zelda is the perfect Nendoroid. Both the game’s and the toyline’s unique aesthetics come together in the perfect blend, with the end figure fitting both styles almost flawlessly. With a range of accessories both for herself and Link, Zelda is also excellent value for money and another example that when it comes to accessories Nendoroids still come out top. But most importantly of all after numerous Links Good Smile have FINALLY put out a Zelda figure, and that alone is worth more than anything else. With a Twilight Princess Zelda due for release in the Figma line next year, fingers crossed this means Good Smile’s Legend of Zelda range will continue to be more varied going forward. With two thirds of the Triforce covered, it would be criminal not to do Ganondorf at this point.

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