Friday 14 July 2017

Toybox REVIEW: Figma Zelda Twilight Princess Ver.

Release Date: May 2017
RRP: 5556 yen

Figma Twilight Princess Link is a fantastic figure, but there are sure to be collectors out there rolling their eyes at the prospect of another Link variant. And understandably so – in five years of Legend of Zelda toys from Good Smile Company we’ve had five different Links across two toy lines (three Figma and two Nendoroids) but only one Zelda Nendoroid. However the wait is finally over, as Princess Zelda has finally joined the Figma line as she appears in The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess. This release has been a long time coming, and finally offers Figma/Zelda fans something other than Link as well as another entry in GSC’s growing Nintendo range.

Packaging is the usual Figma standard, although this time around the coloured section is a nice shade of purple to match Zelda’s vest. Surprisingly while the DX Edition of Twilight Princess Link had some nice Hylian symbols adorning the front window of his box, these are completely absent on Zelda’s – guess that “DX” wasn’t just referring to the amount of accessories then. Inside the figure and accessories are spread across two plastic trays, although the second is a pretty big waste of plastic given that the accessories only take up the top left corner.

If there's one thing that doesn't let this figure down it's the sculpt, as Princess Zelda is every bit as colourful and detailed as the Twilight Princess concept art and in-game model. Where to begin on just how great this figure looks in hand? As you can see there's so much sculpted detail to appreciate on this figure, and not just in the obvious places either - the raised pattern at the bottom of the dress is easy to miss in photos but looks fantastic. The paintwork is absolutely sublime - particularly the vest's metallic purple and the gold used for the shoulder pads, crown, necklace and other bits of decorative flair. However you can't talk about paintwork without praising the design at the front of the dress, which not only looks striking against the pearly white dress but also doesn't look too simplified to work at such a smaller scale. On a purely aesthetic level, Figma Zelda is a real winner.

Buyers will be pleased to know that Zelda does indeed have fully functioning legs underneath that long dress, although you’re unlikely to get much use out of the joints since not only are they completely covered but also aren’t required for the figure to balance properly. That said, the back sections of the dress are removable, attached via Figma joints to give them a limited range of motion for a decent billowing effect. Zelda looks pretty silly with the pieces removed, but at least the legs can be appreciated this way.

But while the legs are indeed there, ultimately they don’t count for much when it comes to the Zelda’s full range of articulation. However from the waist up the figure has the usual high standard of smooth Figma movement, with ball joints in the head/neck, shoulders, waist and wrists together with standard Figma hinge joints as elbows. On top of all this the hair is also attached via two tiny joints, allowing it to be moved into windswept positions along with the dress. Unfortunately thanks to the the hairstyle, the head is a bit limited when it comes to side to side motion. Honestly it isn’t a bad range of articulation and pretty much what should be expected for a design like this, but even so having the entire lower half instantly nullified by a few solid pieces of plastic is a bit disappointing. 

As for accessories Zelda comes packaged with an alternate smiling face, three pairs of alternate hands (open and two sets of weapon holding hands), her sword, the bow of light and an accompanying arrow. There isn't a whole lot to say about her sword but the Bow of Light is a suitably impressive piece - lavishly decorated and given a pearly white finish that goes beautifully with the gold highlights. The same goes for the arrow, which is just as nicely detailed. Like Link weapons the bow breaks apart at the centre in order to fit in Zelda's hands, while the arrow neatly plugs into the relevant fist. Compared to Link this doesn't seem like a very large accessory count, but what else should a Zelda come with? In the absence of any other appropriate accessories at the very least a third faceplate would have done nicely, such as a concentrating or shouting one to work with the weapons.

Figma Zelda Twilight Princess Ver. is a figure that was long overdue, and despite a few expecting drawbacks due to the design it’s still a fantastic figure that deserves a place in anyone’s Legend of Zelda (or general Nintendo) collection. Alongside the fully loaded DX Edition Link her accessories do feel a little sparse, but this is easy to overlook at the joy of finally getting a Zelda character in the line that isn’t just yet another Link. Here’s hoping it won’t be another five years until we get a Ganondorf, or one of the many other characters created over the decades that are more than deserving of a poseable figure.

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