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Vault Review: Revoltech’s Pixar Figure Collection #02, WALL-E

At the end of last year Revoltech introduced a spinoff line from their Sci-Fi series based only on Pixar characters.  Naturally I had to pick up the main character from my favorite Pixar movie, WALL-E.  Unfortunately the results were a bit disappointing.

My first thought when hearing about this new line was that Revoltech plus Pixar should equal a fantastic set of figures.  But this line seems to be plagued with odd design choices, and even worse, poor quality control.  A very unsatisfactory turnout from a company whose products I generally enjoy.

The first figure in this line was Nemo, which I thought was an interesting choice.  I was even considering buying him when I found out he came with Dorry.  But then I learned that Dorry was only a miniature version and grossly dwarfed by the Nemo figure.  This same disappointment was mirrored with their fourth figure, Mr. Incredible, who comes with a miniature Omnidroid.  Interestingly Wall-E didn’t come with any mini figures, even though M-O would have fit into this category perfectly.  Maybe he’ll come with a (hopeful) future release of EVE.

The packaging of these Pixar figures is a bit different from your standard Revoltech.  Instead of a detailed box, they come packaged on cardback.  The card itself is the same size as a Revoltech box, but the bubble only takes up about half of that space.  I actually prefer the cheaper packaging since I’m not going to keep my figure on card.  I also have no problem throwing it away, unlike the snazzy boxes that I can’t quite part with because of all the detail and information on them.

The Pixar line is also less expensive than the Sci-Fi line, costing about 700 Yen cheaper on average.  I thought this was a great deal at first, but now I’m not so sure.  If the cheapness is leading to poor quality control (which I’ll talk about later), then I’d rather pay the higher price of the normal figures.  But I haven’t heard about any issues from the other figures of the line yet, so this may just be a problem that’s specific to Wall-E.

The best thing about this Wall-E figure is the attention to detail in his sculpting and paint apps.  It’s the same kind of detail that I’m used to seeing in the Sci-Fi line.  His simple square design is offset by the gears and treads on his wheels, or even the panel layouts of his cube body.  The pupils of Wall-E’s eyes are actually set behind clear plastic lenses and he even has little wires running from the back of his head to the top of his neck.  But for me, the most impressive part of his sculpt are the dents in his body.  It’s a really great movie-accurate touch that even the impressive Thinkway toys figures didn’t include.

Wall-E’s paint job acts to bring out the sculpt and add a finer touch of realism to the figure.  Most of his body is molded in yellow plastic and painted with metallic silvers.  A darker brownish yellow wash is used to replicate ages of dirt and highlight the subtle dented areas.  There’s also this great rust colored wash the put over his wheels and on the edges of his head.

One of the reasons I was looking forward to this figure so much was because of his articulation.  Wall-E’s eyes are connected by a hinge joint, which allows for some nice emotional expressions.  The middle of his neck is also on a hinge joint, while his head and base of the neck are connected with revolver joints.  His shoulders are also Revolver joints, while his forearms swivel and extend.  His fingers are all hinged and individually jointed.  Last but not least, his treads attach to his body with double Revolver joints.  Continue to page 2…

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23 comments to Vault Review: Revoltech’s Pixar Figure Collection #02, WALL-E

  • Tedimus

    This guy is currently in SAL shipping for me. Hopefully he turns out alright.

    • AdventureVault

      Good luck with him. He’s a great figure, as long as he stays together…

      • Tedimus

        Came in today. Only one of the holes was too small, the others seem just fine. I fixed it though by sticking a skeleton joint in and moving it around a few times to loosen it up. I’ve had no further trouble but the skeleton joints are leagues more firm than these ones.

  • This is the core frustration with import toys. In Japan, had the joint breakage happened, you could just walk down to your local hobby shop and buy a pack of replacement Revoltech joints, or call the customer service line and maybe get replacements. If not for your surplus of skeletons, you’d be SOL.

    Say, since you’re drilling, did you consider drilling those holes in back that are oddly missing?

    There’s a part of me that wonders if they had export intent with the Pixar line. There’s this odd “we’re making toys for AMERICA!!” vibe I get from that bubblecard. I know that the Disney Parks often have a store that sells import toys (I still regret passing up some Bandai Godaikin toys I saw back in ’84 at Disneyland) so, who knows.

    I know one potential reason to keep an eye on the Pixar line. John Carter (Warlord of Mars). Wouldn’t that make for some kick-ass Revoltech figures?

    (but we’ll probably get the house from Up) 🙂

    So, the ladies like the Wall-E, huh?

    • Battle Catman

      I got my first broken import toy last week. My Play Arts Kai FF XIII-2 Lightning showed up with both her wrists broken. I sent an email to the import site I got her from, but I doubt there’s anything that can be done, which sucks because she’s a great figure otherwise.

      $70 on a busted figure I can’t do anything with. Damn.

      • AdventureVault

        I know your pain Catman. I just got in a Big Fau with a broken leg and I’m still waiting for a response from Amiami. I may be able to fix it myself, but that shouldn’t be an issue when I spent $150 on him.

        If they don’t get back with you, definitely send more emails. Also, if you used Paypal you can open a case against them.

        • Battle Catman

          My Lightning came from Amiami too! Though I don’t blame them for it, nor do I blame the post office; there was no visible damage to the package, and even so, I highly doubt dropping the box on its side would have caused those two specific joints to break in such a way (one has a crack in the ring of the balljoint which means there’s no friction to support Lightning holding her weapon, and the peg clean snapped off the other side). I just got a bad figure and would like it fixed somehow.

          Is it better to contact them through the form on their website, or straight shoot them an email? I sent a message through the site last Thursday when the package arrived, but no responses yet.

          • AdventureVault

            Try sending it directly to e_support@amiami.com today. This way you’ll at least get in before the week deadline is up.

            Tell them what’s up with the figure and include pictures. Then hopefully they’ll get back to you with an answer, but it may take a couple of days. I’m currently waiting on a response for my figure and it’s been two days.

            Amiami’s a pretty good company I think. I’ve never had any issues with them before, but this is the first time I’ve actually needed to replace a figure. Even though it’s not their fault, it should be expected that there are going to be problem figures now and again. And since we’re in the US the Japanese companies more than likely won’t deal with us, so it’s really up to Amiami, or whatever store a person uses, to fix the issue.

            Let me know how it turns out.

            • Battle Catman

              I just got a reply to my first message from last week.

              They apologized and said they would send a replacement, but they’re out of stock. Instead they offered a refund.

              It took a few days, but I’m satisfied with the customer service (which is good, because I have two more pre-orders with them!).

              • I’m sorry for the problem and glad they’re offering a refund, but this is the problem with just about all shops today. Everyone buys with the intent to sell thru 100%, zero back stock. From a purely business perspective that makes sense but man, it never grows your customer base. Think of all the readers of IAT that might like to pick up some of these imports but oops, nope, all gone and damn overpriced on the secondary market.

                *sigh* I guess I’m glad to be out of retail.

                • manekochan

                  Sometimes they re-release, which is pretty nice. I think you can still pick up the skeleton. Anyway, that’s my main gripe with them especially when you watch Vault stay up till 3 am for a figure release and watch him stare at a crashed website for 45 minutes.

                • Battle Catman

                  Pre-ordering import toys feels like playing a game of “commit to buying something before you even know what you’re getting into” (aka, the Mattel Subscription Business Model).

                  I don’t like how you’re pretty much “forced” to pre-order an item or risk it disappearing forever or being forced to pay upwards of three times as much on eBay a month later. It’s really bad with Sentai and Kamen Rider merchandise from what I hear; if you don’t collect your items as they’re being released during the run of the current season you’re pretty much screwed. Power Ranger fans who are currently watching Samurai and want the “better” Shinkenger toys are no doubt cursing Burai’s ghost that the basic Shinken-Oh is going to set them back $150 while the Samurai Megazord is sitting on the shelf at Target for $30.

                  I wouldn’t feel so bad if there were more reviews of the toys beforehand, but every “preview” of a figma or a Play Arts I see is just a bunch of pictures of the figure in different poses (usually the same ones from the stock photos). There aren’t any actual “reviews” of the toys that go over the articulation and if you should watch out for any joints that are susceptible to breaking.

                  I always hear collectors talk about how Japanese toys are “better” and made with “higher quality plastic.” That is true, in the way that a crystal wine glass is higher quality than a plastic cup with Darth Vader on it you got at Walmart. The crystal is nicer and more impressive to show off to people, but you have to treat it like it’s made of…well, glass. The Darth Vader cup, on the other hand, can be enjoyed by you or your five-year-old son, it doesn’t care how many times you bump the table and knock it on the floor, and if it ever does break you can just head on down to Walmart and buy another.

                  • Preach it, brother, testify!

                    I’m not so sure that the Japanese companies use ‘better’ plastic, but I would go along with a statement that they use different kinds and work very hard at using what plastic works best for whatever action, function, detail, whatever.

                    As to sell-thru, add to that list Saint Seiya figures. Rumor has it that collectors in France, Mexico and Italy grab those as fast as they come out.

                    Part of the problem is it seems the manufacturers have a hard time getting product info to the retailers. Now, were I spending money on Sentai toys like I was ‘Metal Hero’ toys in the ’90s, I wouldn’t care and buy blind. But then you get those gashapon and trading figure things, or ‘game prize’ items, and it’s a real crap shoot! Could be decent, could be a real let-down! And pics often don’t show until after the thing is sold out!!

                    Arrgghh. Damn Japanese retail crap! Get up to speed, Japan! 🙂

    • AdventureVault

      I’m not absolutely sure, but I don’t think that Revoltech offers this size of joint in their packs. So that would make it a bit more difficult, even for Japanese fans.

      I’m still trying to decide if I want to drill the holes into the back of his sides. I don’t think it’d be hard, but they will have to be at an angle if I want them to be in the proper place.

      Also, if they can make a super articulated Lightning McQueen then I wouldn’t put it past them to try for the Up house. 😀

      Ladies don’t like Wall-E, they LOVE him. XP

  • orionpax636

    I was close to getting this one for a second, but I think the US versions I got will do. Lightning McQueen seems oddly intriguing though.

    I like these import toy reviews every now and then for some variety. Will you be doing anymore non-Ranger Figuarts reviews? Those damn Figuarts are almost addicting, and SHF Vegeta is looking especially awesome on my desk right now.

    • I personally know the president of Kaiyodo – well, he called me “the suspicious foreigner” and probably doesn’t know my name – but I am on very good terms with his aunt (it’s a family business) and might be able to give some insight on some issues you’re having.

      First, if I had to guess, I think that Kaiyodo may very well be making packaging aimed at the American market. I have had discussions with them about packaging and marketing capsule toys in the states, and they were very ready and willing to talk about new packaging methods. One thing that came out of the conversation is a general feeling that Americans need much more straightforward packaging than the Japanese. If an American buys a keychain, they want to know what they are buying; the Japanese are very happy to take their chances with the vending machines.

      Second, I have picked up a few of Kaiyodo’s newest, before-they-hit-the-market items, and they have been made with extremely sub-par plastic. For example, when they opened their new museum in Kochi Prefecture, they released a series of commemorative keychains – and every single one of mine broke mere minutes after I stuck it to my backpack. I also got my hands on some prototypes of another product, and this too snapped easily when dropped. It’s entirely likely that Kaiyodo has also done this with some of their Revolver joints. It could be an accident; it could be a phase they are going through; it could just be that you got the earliest edition of the product.

      Third, let me say that Kaiyodo is hands down THE MOST down-to-earth company I have ever seen. The new museum in Kochi Prefecture was built in the president’s father’s home village – and when they opened the museum for a “sneak peek,” all the local old ladies came in and sat and oohed and aahed and fawned over the president. The founder of the company himself sat and explained what Kaiyodo meant to me (it means “ocean” because the company is going to spread and become as wide as the sea!).

      • Nope. Visited their museum yesterday and chatted with the founder of the company, the Wall-E packaging is the same over there. Looks like it’s just a new direction for the line.

  • ladies do love wall- e for certain!

    any word on a mike and or skully revoltech figures?

    • well, they exist.

      http://www.hlj.com/product/KYD04031

      Did you mean “hey vault, did you get the Sully Revoltech? how is it?” well, I can’t answer to that, only The Vault knows… 🙂

      Me, looks like they got heavy-handed trying to match the subtle shading of the computer model. another wash of light blue over that (if that holds to the actual production toy) would probably do wonders to fix it. Mike seems limited and needs an extra face with the eyebrow in a different position.

  • nilocomic

    Does anyone know what size the joints are for this Wall-E? I managed to break one of them, and have no idea if it’s 6mm or 8mm. Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!