Wonder Festival
Summer 2012 (Part 1)

As we were enjoying the afterglow/aftermath of SDCC 2012 a couple weeks ago, another important toy event was taking place half way around the world.  Our man in Japan, Robert Baldwin, was there gathering the latest news, pictures, and even a few rumors from WonderFest!

I’d like to thank Kaiyodo for allowing us to cover this event.  As a big importer, I’m always amazed to see what Japan has in store for my wallet.  I’d also like to thank Robert for his excellent coverage.  Not only does he bring us back some great news and pictures, but he also brings our questions to the various companies.  This gives us Western fans a rare chance to have our voices heard.

We’ve broken down the galleries by categories to make finding things a bit easier. Also, don’t forget to check back tomorrow for more updates, and the answers to our forum questions!

Now without further ado, here’s Robert.

Wonder Festival 2012 [Summer]

July 29th, under the grueling summer heat and humidity which seems to get worse every year, Kaiyodo was holding their semi-annual event in the halls of Makuhari Messe.

8a.m. I walk up to the registration desk with my invitation and early entry permit in my hands, a smile on my face and tremendous amounts of perspiration cascading down my forehead.  Prepared to make use of every minute, I started off by entering the manufacturers’ hall where Kaiyodo, Good Smile Company, Kotobukiya and all the other big names gather.

8:10 and I realize none of the booths are ready, Good Smile even has a sign stating “No press until 9 o’clock”.  Okay, so I managed to get there TOO early.  I walked over to the Kaiyodo booth, Takakura was busy talking to his staff but as I toook some pictures, he became available to talk to me and this started off a day of non-stop picture taking/mingling with the Japanese toy community.

As was the case with Wonder Festival 2012 [Winter], Kaiyodo had set up an early entry system for attendees who were willing to pay a little extra.  However, this time, these people were told to line up at 9:45 for a 10 o’clock entry to the manufacturers’ hall while everybody else would be permitted to enter this particular hall at 10:30.  This allowed the press and the manufacturers a little more time to take care of business before the paying public got in our way.

As usual, due to time constraints, I wasn’t able to get pictures of everything, and I wasn’t able to get the best quality pictures of what I did photograph (if only I could get an assistant or two to help me out…).

As with every previous occasion, I wanted to get to the cosplay area as well – but this is a toy event, toys take precedence over any scantily clothes hot chicks dressed in outfits that would get them arrested in many countries.  And so often, these girls are willing to get up close and personal with other cosplay girls, the camera and the guy holding the camera…  but that’s a report for a different audience.

So, I hope everybody will be satisfied with what I have to offer.  Overall, the show consisted of familiar manufacturers with their newest products.  Murakami – the guy who used to give me all of my Kaiyodo information, has moved on to do his own thing, starting with a painted, ready to display statue of the Pyramid Head guy from Silent Hill.  There was also a booth set up to advertise the new Yamato 2199 series with displays of ships in extremely camera-unfriendly cases.  But the biggest and most expensive item at the event, standing 4 metres tall and weighing in at 4 metric tons, was Kuratas from Suidobashi Heavy Industry.  Developed for possible military use, this machine, operated by a single pilot from its interior, and can be purchased for a mere 1 million dollars.  This makes Kuratas the largest and most expensive item offered at Wonder Festival to date. If the full size Kuratas is out of your price range, there are plans to make it available as a 1:24 scale kit.


Gallery A – Kaiyodo

Gallery B – Kaiyodo

Gallery C – Good Smile Company

Gallery D – Good Smile Company

Gallery E – Good Smile Company

Gallery F – Art Spirits and Suidobashi

27 thoughts on “Wonder Festival
Summer 2012 (Part 1)

  1. Some nifty looking robots there, but thankfully, nothing I feel the urge to empty my wallet in the direction thereof.

    Spiffy photography, though!

    1. Don’t worry, we’ll have more tomorrow. Maybe we can find something for your wallet then. 😀

  2. My o my that’s a hella lotta MOE goin’ on in that there place, huh? 🙂

    I don’t mean to sound bitchy, but I do wish there was some context to the pics, just a line about “(character) from (show)” if nothing else. I know that doing so would probably take a ton more time, so, maybe for the best not to.

    Well, here’s an example. I see the Studio Nue Powered Suit /Starship Troopers M.I. ‘Marauder’ has surfaced once again. Is this a kit, or a toy or what? I read reviews that the Revoltech version was shockingly substandard in quality and made fans of the design weep bitter, bitter tears. but I don’t know if this is old, new, revised…

    1. It already takes quite a while for me to edit the hundreds of pictures and get them ready to post, and that’s not even counting the time Robert puts in to them before he sends them off to me.

      There’s also the issue with properly identifying everything. There’s definitely limits to my Japan pop culture knowledge. Robert obviously knows more about these things than I do, but then we get back into the the time issue. It would just take too long, and we’d like to get the coverage up while it’s relevant. 🙂

      It’d be great to do, but just a bit impractical for now.

      1. No, no, I get it, it’s the problem of our digital age. Used to be, when you had to buy film, when you had to develop the pictures to see what, if anything, you got, we all were much more selective.

        Nowadays, digital cameras (tablets, cell phones, whatever) are so compact, so easy to take along, and storage, storage is just INSANE in terms of cost and capacity. Simply wading thru the content is a daunting task, let alone doing ANYTHING with them!

        A good reporting job all around! 🙂

    2. This is why we have a comments section as well as a forum.

      I think I know which figures you’re talking about, but just to be certain, can you tell me which picture from which page you are referring to? If I can answer, I will. If I don’t have an answer, I’ll look for one. And if anybody else has answers, they’re welcome to post them as well.

        1. This is actually a prototype of an action figure made by Sentinel. This was put into the Kaiyodo gallery because Sentinel is represented by Union Creative International, the representative for Revoltech Yamaguchi.

          Sentinel is still relatively new to the toy industry but the Devilman Amon figure http://www.union-creative.jp/sentinel/devil-amon.html which was released last year appeared quite impressive and I’m hoping to pick up their version of Guren Laggan http://www.union-creative.jp/sentinel/rbt-gl.html sometime soon for a comparison with the Revoltech version.

          1. One thing I forgot to mention. Although Sentinel’s figures are quite impressive (great sculpt, ecxellent articulation), their price tags can be somewhat shocking!

            For action figures roughly the size of Kaiyodo’s Revoltech series, Devilman Amon retails for 7,800yen (just under 100 dollars) while Guren Laggan comes in at 9,500yen (almost 120 dollars).

    1. The Kuratas demonstration was stationary, most of the movement was the arms and entry hatch. At an event such as this, due to safety standards and limitations imposed by insurance companies, they can’t be permitted to do much more (we can’t have an ED209 incident at Wonder Festival).

      For more information/video on Kuratas and Suidobashi Heavy Industry, go to http://suidobashijuko.jp/

  3. Surprised that no one’s going nuts over figma Pit or the figma Avengers line. Me, I’m excited for pretty much everything, but then again, I have pretty different tastes compared to the average IAT reader.

    1. I’m pretty excited for just about the Nintendo announcements.

      I already know I’m going to need that Avengers Nendo Loki and Hulk…

      My poor wallet.

    2. I already have the Link on Pre-Order, and will place my pre-order for Pit as soon as I can. However, what Avengers Figma figures are you talking about?

      1. Along with the Nendoroid Spider-Man and Iron Man display, there was a banner announcing the Figma Avengers series and a Figma Amazing Spider-Man. GSC got the license, so it looks like they’re going all-out.

        Speaking of which, GSC recently created a Tumblr blog, perhaps we’ll be getting some information from there. http://goodsmilecompanyus.tumblr.com/

    1. Orange guy with wings?
      Guy with orange wings?

      If you could give me a page and the number of the picture, I might be able to help you out. If I’m guessing right, you’re probably asking about the Jushin Liger line from Sentinel, but without a page and number, I can’t be certain.

      1. there was also another picture without the wings page 2, 6 down pictures 5 and 6 across……and i think it also comes in just silver in picture 6 down 4 across? Whoa re these guys please and thank you.

  4. Not to sound pervy, but I’m pretty sure that toys NEVER take precedence over “scantily clothed hot chicks dressed in outfits that would get them arrested.” If they choose to dress like that I believe it is your right, if not your moral obligation, to take their pictures and post them right here at IAT. No need to look for a “different audience.” You’re in the right place.
    But seriously, cool pictures. Thank you for sharing them!

    1. seconded… any scandalous content can be posted in forums w/ a spoiler banner over it or something… delicious girl in costume action keeps the old black heart pumping. :0

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