Saturday, August 22, 2009

Shinkenger Toy Review

For the past year I've been buying up all the giant robots from the Shinkenger toy line. I have to say, I am very pleased with the quality and creativeness of these toys. It cost a bit to get everything - but it's really worth it when putting them all together. I get such a kick out of transforming them and everything. So I thought I'd give my opinions of each toy.

Shinken-Oh

Shinken-Oh is an incredible toy. I was very pleased with the folding style and capabilities of these toys. The toys are great in badge mode. The joints of the figures prevent them from being perfect circles and squares, but they come off very decretive just the same. In animal modes each robot has appropriate articulation and features. The green bear, for example, has a slight opening and closing mouth. The entire robot combines well, with the helmet cleverly stashed away inside the Dragon. The sword and shield are extra armaments, with the shield able to be put on Shinken-Oh's back, left arm, or hand. I think it's pretty safe to say these toys won't break easily, though you don't want to put that to the test. I've actually dropped Shinken-Oh a few times, and he seems still all together, though some of the joints do feel a little squeaky now.

Kabuto Origami

Kabuto is the first armament robot to get. When you spin the Hiden Disk in his belly, his head spins around. The toy nicely fits on Shinken-Oh. This is the one armament toy that comes with it's own Shinken-Oh face, and covers up the face on the Lion Origami. This is necessary, so you can close the face of the helmet and have it spin around like it does on the TV show. This toy is very nice, but you absolutely have to be careful about holding it by the top horn. The horn detaches easily (but stays in place), and if your holding him by that horn, the body will fall to the ground. This toy is the main reason Shinken-Oh has taken a few spills to the ground.

Kajiki Origami

This sword fish robot is perhaps the weakest of the armament robots, mainly because it's main body remains on the back side of Shinken-Oh, leaving a little less visually appealing to see when looking straight at him. Otherwise it's an excellent toy, with a cool nose-snipping movement when you move the Hiden Disk. He also has two missiles that fire. They can easily shoot out if you accidently press the button while holding him, so be careful. The package only comes with one replacement missile, in case of loss. When combined with Shinken-Oh, the helmet is able to fit Shinken-Oh's sword into the top, allowing him to swing the sword back and forth from the top of his head. It's an odd way of attacking, but nonetheless cool.

Tora Origami
This tiger is a good armament robot. In animal mode you can ride Tora on the ground on his belly, almost like a bike, which causes the legs of his feet to spin. The legs detach easily (but are firm when attached) and move into other position for the various transformations. When on Shinken-Oh, you can turn a nob on his side to make all the drills rotate. It looks very cool, and the attachment on the helmet is excellently decorative. It looks good in both a circle, and later spread out when forming Tenku Shinken-Oh.

Tenku Shinken-Oh

OK - now you've collected Shinken-Oh and all the armament robots. What to do now - but of course to combine them all. First the armament robots combine together to become a flying bird-like plane. This mode is cool, but it can easily fall apart if you are not extremely careful with it. There's only so much connecting the Beetle and the Sword Fish to the sides of the tiger. This mode then changes when combined onto Shinken-Oh. In this mode, he looks great. The size of the toy begins to get very large - and very imposing. The one down side to all this combining - is that you almost can't play with Tenku Shinken-Oh. Tenku is so heavy - he easily falls of the back of Shinken-Oh. It's not very firmly attached. It stays on just fine when displayed, with the tail of the sword fish helping to balance it all out. But it will definitely fall apart on you if you try flying it around the air too much. (Which, really, is the whole point of Tenku.) It's still an amazing mode - but the heaviness and weight of it all detracts from it a lot.

Ika Origami

Ika-Chan here is an excellent toy. He's very cute in animal mode, and looks great sitting next to Daikai-Oh and Shinken-Oh. He can combine nicely with both Daikai-Oh and Shinken-Oh. His various legs either become a shield or breast plate, and the top of his head extends a small ways to become an attacking spear. I have simply no complaints about this toy - it's excellent and looks great with both of the bigger robots.

Daikai-Oh

Shinken Gold's main robot, the Daikai-Oh toy is a fun and innovative robot. His lobster mode is large and cool looking, with the swords combining together to form the lobster face. You can then transform him into robot mode, which looks excellent. He comes with four different faces, for all the weapon modes he has. When he uses his twin swords, for example (which, when not used, fit nicely on his back) you turn his head to it's corresponding position. This toy also comes with sound effects. A red light flashes on Shinken-Oh's chest, announcing the North, East, West, and South directions of each head. Each change of the head also have attacking sound effects. It's all a wonderful package - and a very entertaining toy.

Daikai Shinken-Oh

OK - This is the big transformation, combining absolutely every robot up to this point. Daikai-Oh come apart and fits together with the separate pieces of Shinken-Oh. It's a very odd change, as Shinken Pink and Shinken Yellow's robots fit on the sides and to the back. They are designed to hold the twin swords - but they sort of stick far out the back. When displaying him, without holding the swords, I usually just put the swords to the side. I gotta say this - Daikai Shinken-Oh is somewhat cumbersome and creaky. Perhaps it's just Shinken-Oh, but the joints all feel like they might be a little loose. They aren't at all - but they always feel like that. And I also dislike how top heavy Daikai Shinken-Oh becomes, always seemingly leaning a little ahead. I actually am afraid it will fall down if left on the shelf, but is remedied by having the Tenku Buster standing in front of him, stopping any potential fall. Now, I'm being very critical of the mode, but I don't want you to misunderstand me - I love this toy, despite these flaws. The toy looks absolutely incredible when combined.

Now, all the Armament Robots can combine to become the Tenku-Buster, the final powerful cannon Daikai Shinken-Oh uses. It's basically taking Tenku and putting Ika Origami into the center, with the legs of Ika nicely becoming the base for the cannon. It really looks spectacular, and once in this mode, it's much easier to spin the control on Tora Origami, making all the spinning movements. It feels much more secure than when in flying Tenku mode.

Kyouryu Origami
This image is labeled as coming from www.modxtoy.com

I just got this toy in the mail the other day, and I am very pleased with it. You do not actually need this robot to complete the final combination of robots, but it's a nice addition to the Origami family either way. This toy is basically like the Shinken Swords, with the spinning reflecting wheel, and sounds that come out when you press a button or spin the Hiden Disk. The sword isn't the actual length like on TV, but it's plenty big for Shinken-Oh. The base of the toy splits off to become the helmet. It's a pretty bare thrills helmet, but very nice looking. You use the other part of the base to help balance the sword when placed in Shinken-Oh's hand. Only a wee little peg actually attaches to Shinken-Oh. It's somewhat loose, and without the base helping to hold it up, it would fall down. While not very firm, even with the base, it still manages to stay there. Sadly there is not click or firm attachment when moving the base to the bottom of the hilt, making it feel like it might still fall down. Despite these worries, Shinken-Oh looks awesome holding the oversized blade. You really can't have Shinken-Oh holding the sword in different ways, as it's size and weight prevent that. It's still am amazing toy, and I very much look forward to seeing it in action in the Shinkenger movie.

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