What rabbit hole have I fallen into now? Well, at least I am consistent in my weakness for all things that mash-up classic video games and toys.
If I won the lottery today, I would begin collecting classic arcade cabinets in addition to my already crippling action figure addiction. Not only do I love playing the games, I love the overall “8-bit” aesthetic and the look of the game cabinets themselves is nothing to sneeze at either. Say what you will be about the games being simplistic and dated by today’s standards, but many of them still have a strong pop culture permeation, and most of the well-known video game characters out there came from that era. So I am glad I live in a time when combining my love for those games with my action figure hobby has wielded a fun and diverse collection, and these new classic video game Funko Mystery Minis are the latest additions to my shelf.
In full disclosure, I normally do not collect a lot of Funko merchandise. Ever since their Legacy execution was killed off (my poor Game of Thrones collection), they have never really offered much that speaks to me. Sure, I pick up some of their ReAction stuff from time to time (even though I think that is now over, too), but, as a general rule, I am not into the the Pop! or other vinyl stuff. There is always some king of “spin” or unique take on their stuff, which is fine, but I usually like stuff a bit more straight-forward. So, I have never even thought of purchasing a Mystery Mini before, but it is pretty damned amazing what Mega Man and Q*bert can get me to buy.
Why the preamble? Well, because it seems like Funko did a few things differently with this set than is the standard procedure with their Minis. Yes, they are still *slightly* stylized, but it seems like less than their normal fare; also, while still blind boxed, these are only partially blind as you can at least get the right game based off of the individual packaging. Putting that together with the fact that buying a case will get you a full set of twelve figures with no duplicated, I had to go to BBTS and get them. For me, it was a good decision as these guys fit right (for the most part) with my overall video game figure collection.
This first (hopefully there are more) series has representation from Frogger, Q*bert, Pac-Man, Ms. Pac-Man, Dig Dug, Centipede, and Mega Man. The full case contains one of each of the following:
- Ms. Pac-Man
- Pinky (called “Ms. Pac-Man Ghost” on the box)
- Dig Dug
- Mega Man
Each figure is housed in a little box shaped like an arcade cabinet with screen shots and supporting art from each game. I suppose the inclusion of Mega Man is what is keeping these from being called “Arcade” figures (MM has never had a huge arcade presence), but I am not going to complain since he is my all-time favorite video game character. As you can see, the assortment is diverse, but it also doesn’t shy away from including some of the enemies alongside the titular heroes, and I appreciate that. Sure, I am most concerned with having good Q*bert representation on my shelf, but I am glad his most famous villain (Coily the purple snake) is right next to him in the carton.
Right out of the box, I realized that these things are actually a lot bigger than I thought they would be, but that would prove to be advantageous as it seems like figures such as Q*bert match the scale of my other video game figures (mostly Jakks World of Nintendo and various import figures) more closely. So, using this Q*bert as an example again, he is the closest thing to a 6-inch scale Q*bert I have gotten to this point. I like the look of him standing next to my Figuarts Mario on the shelf, so these supplement my entire video game collection, rather than being an exclusive offshoot.
The aesthetics also help promote this as, compared to most of their other releases, the “Funko-ness” of these has been toned down a bit. Yeah, the forms of most are still slightly distorted, and they have remnants of those round dead eyes, but neither of these is as pronounced. So, while I wish Q*bert and Dig Dug’s eyes matched their game art counterparts a bit better, Centipede and Coily actually match really well. Sure, these are not articulated, and for figures like Mega Man, will never be the “default” figures in my display, but since my brain calculates the aesthetics as being close enough to a “standard” look, a lot of these will do fine.
You, know — even though this type of figure is a little outside of my normal wheelhouse, I really dig these guys. Overall, they are bigger than I thought they would be, so they fit with the rest of my collection well, and the cute/super-deformed style is tuned down just enough that these don’t feel like outsiders with the rest of my video game figures. I am very pleased to finally have some Q*bert, Frogger, Dig Dug, and Centipede representation on my shelf, and I can ALWAYS use more Mega Man and Pac-Man stuff. Now, here is hoping we get another assortment out of this as I would love to see more Pac-Man ghosts and Robot Masters, but also that Galaga ship that was teased as part of this assortment, and figures from other classic 1980s games.