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Fwoosh Feature – Bandai D-Arts Megaman

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You might not know this, but there are A LOT of MEGAMAN fans on the Fwoosh staff. Industrial showed some love toward the little Blue Bomber in our Best of 2012 article, but when a very long-awaited figure like this comes along, you just know that it is requisite to serve up a Feature for a closer look. Well, canonball and I have decided that, instead of fighting over who gets to write up an article, we will tag team a look at what I am already calling the best Megaman figure ever. Sure, you have to, appropriately, look to Japan to get your paws in him (or Fwoosh sponsor Big Bad Toy Store), but this Bandai D-Arts figure is not to be missed.

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Just so you can keep track, we have color coded our comments (in due Megaman fashion), so canonball is in light blue and Veebee is dark blue.

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I think I have mentioned several times that, not only is Megaman (or Rockman in Nihon) my favorite video game franchise, the property has been my most-wanted action figure line for years. I mean YEARS. The worst part is that I have been teased so many times in the past; Jazwares did some figures several years ago, and while I liked the aesthetic of the Retro Roto line, all of their offerings fell short in several areas. Japan has done a little better, but most of the good representations have been fairly statuesque or overly stylized. Then a few years back, Bandai of Japan offered up a beautifully sculpted and well-articulated Megaman X figure in their D-Arts line and many of my fellow Mega Fans rejoiced for the opportunity to get a Megaman representation that could stand next to their Marvel Legends, DC Classics, and SOTA Street Fighter figures. Alas, I have never been a fan of the “X” series, so I had to continue to wait, but I can tell you, now that he has arrived, this little figure was well worth the wait.

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The funny thing is, at first I was not so sure he would be. See, my favorite version of Megaman is based off of art that was produced right around the Megaman 2 and Megaman 3 releases. If you have a copy of  Megaman: The Official Complete Works, this is the style that make up the “Archives” section near the end of the book. So, while I prefer the shorter and slightly more chunky aesthetic, the more modern look that they went with turns out to be just fine with me for this figure.

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 Like VeeBee, I wasn’t sure about this guy at first. Being more familiar with the earlier games, the first three in particular, this isn’t what I picture in my head when I think “Megaman,” so it took me a bit to warm up to the idea of a Megaman that is based on a more “anime” look than the 8-bit hero I’m used to. But, as usual, fear proved to be my ultimate motivator and I had to weigh my options: buy this version, or wait (possibly forever) for my ideal version of the character to be produced. I decided this Megaman was better than no Megaman because I genuinely am afraid I will never see my ideal version, so I placed my order.

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 Once I got him out of the box, it took about two seconds for this guy to completely win me over. What did it for me the most was his size. He’s tiny. Even though I had seen many, many pics of him leading up to his arrival at my doorstep, I was not prepared for how small he is. And I love it! Normally if a figure is too small, I’ll whine and carry on and probably get rid of the figure, but Megaman’s diminutive size totally works in his case. He looks great when displayed with Figma’s Link and Samus, almost like the three were intended to go together, so even though my Nintendo display is small, it looks perfect so far.

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Really, I cannot imagine a Megaman figure giving you any more than what is offered here. I know I mentioned the price (about $45 US), but this simply is a case of getting what you pay for. Megaman features a ton of articulation with fluid movement and ball joints at the shoulders and hips. He has the floating rib cage and his boots feature the side-to-side ankle rocker joints. The figure will transcend just about any pose that was accomplished under the NES series’ somewhat limited animation. All of the joints are nice and tight and they are completely modular, so you can easily pop out the parts at the joints and almost completely disassemble the figure. The one fear I have is that, while he is in what I consider to be complimentary 6-inch scale, he is small, about 4 inches or so. That makes his joints feel a little fragile in my hands, so while I am not at all afraid to pose him, I am using caution so as to not snap any of the small pegs.

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 I’d read a lot about possible QC issues with his joints, particularly his hip joints, but I guess I got lucky or something because everything moves nice and fluidly. I did notice some squeaking in the hips when I first moved them, which freaked me out, but the squeaking stopped after I popped off his legs and reattached them. Now, I didn’t do this, but I’ve read that putting a little soap on those joints will help with the squeaking and aid in his movement so as to prevent possible future breakage, so that may be a wise precautionary move. But, like me, you may not really feel like you need to do it, so your mileage may vary. I may still do it, however, because I’d rather be safe than sorry, you know?

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The modular system is nice from an articulation standpoint, but it is also essential due to the fact that this figure features so many swappable parts. I realize that American collectors have been screaming for this kind of thing for ages in our biggest collector lines and having so many options here is sure to spoil me as I continue collecting my favorite lines. You get two arm cannons, four different hands, a hollow cannon tip so that you can display his triple Mega Buster shot and even three different faces: smiling, serious, and screaming. The display options for him are really only limited by what you can cook up in your own mind, and he has the appropriate expression for just about anything. This is the very definition of what Pabs would call “hand candy.”

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Even after all of that, Megaman does not come in this set alone; keeping him company on your shelf is his faithful pooch Rush and the ubiquitous Mettal (Met for short). The Met is basically a slug figure with a detachable helmet (to recreate his “hidden” form), but Rush is a fully-articulated figure unto himself. He is scaled appropriately to Rock, and while he cannot change into any of his “forms,” he can move and pose for plenty of action. Heck, even his tail is articulated. So, when you are considering the premium figure import price, remember all that you are getting here. I tend to balk at any standard size figure that is priced north of $30, but since you get so much with this set, I have not had one afterthought about what I paid to get it.

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 I am not super familiar with either of his companions. I think I’ve played one game that featured Rush, but that’s pretty much it (like I said, I’m mainly familiar with the very early games). Rush is impressive just because he blew away my expectations by miles. See, I had expected him to be almost statue-like, or maybe like Cringer from the Masters of the Universe Classics line — a true pack-in. Maybe his head would move if we were lucky. But nope — Rush is loaded with articulation and is a full action figure in his own right. It almost makes this feel like a 2-pack set rather than just being Megaman and his “accessories.” Getting the little Met figure just feels like a bonus, too. Who knows if we’ll ever see this like expand to include any of Megaman’s foes, so it’s cool just to have this little Met to pose him with. And then there’s all the extra hands and swappable faces — there’s a lot of play value packed into this set, so even though it’s pricey compared to what we’re used to with US retail toys, this set feels totally worth it.

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  There have been several Megaman figures released in the past, but this is the first one I’ve ever felt the need to own. The original 8-bit NES Megaman is one of my favorite video games of all time, so I’m happy beyond words to finally have a version of such a beloved character on my shelves. And, as it often goes, I am now fiending for more. However, like VeeBee, Megaman X was never really my thing, but I am happy to see more Megaman characters on the horizon. But I want bad guys — at least a couple of the Robot Masters so we can create proper Megaman displays. I’d probably pick up each and every Robot Master they make, and I know I’m not alone in that, so I hope Bandai sees the potential in the Megaman franchise that we do and sees fit to produce more characters. That would make us very happy Mega-fans.

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Here is the thing — I have been waiting for a line of Megaman figures like this for so long, I can barely contain my glee for the fact that this set turned out so nicely. So all I can ask for more, A LOT MORE. I want so much from this property, I don’t know where to even begin. Bass and Treble are on the docket for June and while I don’t particularly care for them as characters, I will get them to support the line. I know that most Japanese lines don’t tend to go “deep,” but I want the Robot Masters from (at least) Megaman 1 and 2 so badly I can already picture them in this line perfectly. Especially Ice Man and Wood Man — they have always been my favorites. So Bandai, you have a home run here, PLEASE follow it up with a classic Megaman line that we can collect for years to come.

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Additional Links

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3 thoughts on “Fwoosh Feature – Bandai D-Arts Megaman

  1. Well I’d buy this reminds me of the first toon we had, his VS. Series appearance, and also see the Blue Bomber being short. The addition of Rush, and the hardhat are nice too. Wonder if can make the Rush glider though?

  2. This figure is very but he is the weakest figure in the D-arts megaman line, i recomend to you since you like the classic megaman the kotobukyia´s articulated model kit

  3. Can you take a pic with Figma Samus and Link? I have the Kotobukiya Rockman, but may get this one too for the hardhat and Rush!

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