Dissidia Final Fantasy Play Arts Kai 01: Cloud
When they first announced about this figure, I'm quite excited actually, finally, we can have another version of Cloud Strife figure and maybe, just maybe, it might offer some sort of improvement from those produced by the Kotobukiya.
Looking at the early pictures from around the internet and also partly because of the higher price tag, I start to have high expectation for this figure.
The price 4,800 yen is indeed quite high (roughly about SGD 75.00 before adding shipment charges and thus the average price you pay for this should be around SGD95.00 or somewhere near there depending on your location).
Dissidia Play Arts Kai 01: Cloud
So in other words, this figure is quite pricey indeed...
This Cloud is about 20cm tall and they said it has over 26 points of articulation for maximum posability.... Wow....
And the one from Kotobukiya released in 2007 is 21cm tall features 22 points of articulation;
Final Fantasy VII Play Arts Vol.1: Cloud Strife
The price is 3,800 yen (about SGD 60.00 before adding shipment charges / the average retail price roughly about SGD 75.00 or somewhere near that)
In fact we reviewed the Cloud with Fenir produced by Kotobukiya in 2009.
So This is now the review of "Dissidia Play Arts Kai 01: Cloud" produced by Square Enix Japan thru a factory in China.
Cloud Strife is a popular hero from one of the best video games of all time, Final Fantasy VII on Sony Playstation One and he also continue his role as a hero in one of the best CGI movie ever produced (at least that point of time) - Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children.
I played the games and finished it once, thanks to the fully detailed "walkthrough" which I downloaded from the internet as well as the "Game Shark" CD - all that story in the past during the PS One era.... that bring any memory to you?
In Shewsbury Land though, Cloud Strife is rather known as Chibi Suzuka from the popular Japanese adult video titled "Anal Fantasy 7" and followed by "Anal Fantasy 7 - Absolute Cream Pie" ... LOL
In that video, Chibi Suzuka is a typical pork seller in the pork market but he eventually always use a massive sword to cut those pork and because of that his body, arms and legs have some nice muscles so some of the customers (those ladies) have tendency to like him and wish to have sex with him and this guy surely knew how to take advantage from that situation, the rest, you can use your imagination.... LOL
He was so strong and so manly performing various postures tirelessly and make you feel out of breath and the ladies surely scream in fascination and satisfaction.... LOL
As it says on the box here, this is No. 1 in this figure series (Dissidia Final Fantasy Play Arts Kai);
The back side of the box;
Out of the box;
The manual is for the sake of showing you how to swap the arms... yeah yeah, tell me something I don't know please...
And despite the big bulky box, you will only get all these - not much really, just the figure, 1 pair of extra arms and the sword;
As usual, let's have a look at the figure;
The details... oh well, not too much of them to talk about, but for what we can see, I think it's quite an accurate rendition of Cloud Strife with his uniform from the original video game - Final Fantasy VII.
The best part is that the face is surely much better than the one we saw in the game ^__^
All the other sculpt and detailing part are quite decent;
You cannot mount the sword on his back like the one offered by the Kotobukiya in 2007 and apparently that model also offered action/display stand to support the figure, but none on this one.
Articulation wise... though they did mentioned a wonderful 26 points of articulation, but honestly I think it's not at all that impressive and responsive. Furthermore this figure is quite big so you will rarely play around with it often and most of the time you will just leave it as a display item changing the action pose once in a while. This is when I start to appreciate those smaller figures like S.H. Figuarts and Figma or those Kamen Rider action figures with gimmick like the FFR and OCC series from Bandai. At least with that small figures, it is much easier to play them and/or carry them to where ever you want to go....
Nonetheless, the usual kneeling pose is not a problem for this figure, the overall articulation capability is quite decent though doing action pose can be tricky as you really need to adjust the legs being mindful of the weight burden from the body and the sword;
The one and only pair of the extra hand, they should give more.... and there is no extra face expression either.... lame, this is one pricey mother fucker...
The sword is as it should be at this price range but nothing spectacular to write about either. 1 major improvement over the Kotobukiya version is that the handle stick, you know that part where he will grip and hold the sword is quite sturdy. The one from Kotobukiya is quite lousy or rather soft and after a while you can see that it will slowly bend a bit....
But not on this one... so I should praise Square Enix factory on this part.
OK now, time for a little bit of action pose;
That's about it... no face expression so what ever you do, you have to live up with that one face only... nothing else...
I do encounters some issue with this figure, first the paint on both of the arm side are not top notch, the finishing seems to be rushed and I'm not happy with that. The other issue I have is the typical one that you could expect from a Cloud Strife figure wielding big heavy long sword and that is the weak wrist joint system;
At least on this one, I do expected it to be like this and to solve that problem, we use the trusted "white glue" to make it tighter and stronger....
When I reviewed the 4,500 yen (about SGD 71.00 before adding shipment charges) Devil May Cry 4 Play Arts Kai Dante figure, I was so impressed with it especially with the amount of detailing the put into that figure. Despite the tradition (at least so far) of not providing any extra face expression and lot's of extra hands like what Figma or Revoltech did, overall, I think that figure really worth the price tag of 4,500 yen, no doubt about it, it's a good Dante figure and we are happy with it.
But now we are talking about 4,800 yen (roughly about SGD 75.00 before adding shipment charges) in Summer 2011 and we still don't get extra face and as many extra hands possible and yet on technological wise, there is not much improvement at all on this figure but the price is indeed quite high.
It is basically the same old type of joint system and probably almost the same type of design concept. In a way you might say that this is just another version of the one produced by Kotobukiya in 2007 (with 1cm shorter and better face), just a minor cosmetic changes here and there and that's it, the new figure series "Dissidia Final Fantasy Play Arts Kai" from Square Enix finally launched and available in the market.
This is No. 1 in the series and there will be more to come in the future but I don't think if I still want to get the rest of them.
I was so hoping that this figure will be much better in many ways but it seems that this is just a decent slightly large size figure with hefty price. I would consider this as one of the less interesting purchase for this year...
Just like many of you Final Fantasy VII and Cloud Strife fans out there, I just want a nice figure of Cloud Strife with good articulation in a decent price but this product failed to fit into that bill.
I guess Figma from MaxFactory or S.H. Figuarts or even Revoltech from Kaiyodo can do a much better job producing such figure but then again at this point of time it is kind of impossible for them to get the license or permission from Square Enix... then again, miracle can happen sometimes... it's really surprising that Max Factory can produce Figma Kamen Rider Ryuki and friends thru some "miracles" - so you'll never know what may come in the future.
Dear Square Enix, you've done well to enter this toys/figures business but you are not good enough - yet.... still a lot more to learn and you need to listen to the market demand if you want to be major player in this fast moving industry. The Final Fantasy franchise certainly have a big fan base globally so the potential to grab more market exposure is there but you have to work for it.
Click the link below to proceed with the next review:
Dissidia Final Fantasy Play Arts Kai 02: Squall