Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Surprisingly Good: Kiwami Rising Ultimate Kuuga Review

As a rule, I dislike the Rising Ultimate look of Kuuga. to me it was too bulky and super-saiyan-ish with the gold going overboard, plus the backstory of it (even just reading a summary or description) made me cringe, and yet I bought this figure on a whim when I saw its preview a few months ago. And now that I actually have it on hand, It's grown on me due to several key factors I'll talk about in this review.

To get things started, there's a lot to love in this figure. I believe the designer was Kenji Ando, for consistency's sake since he did the Mighty form as well, and as far as I can tell he did wonders with that Rising Ultimate design when he translated it into SIC. 

 Everything just looks regal, something that evokes Blade King form or Kiva Emperor, the then 5-pointed horns have grown to a 21-pointed crown that flows outward and up like a fire, and brings along the many other pointed parts of the armor, It's a very dynamic look for Kuuga and definitely cool from all sides. 

His range of motion is left unhindered since a lot of it was resculpted over the Mighty form body, based on the previews. the fact that they resolved the articulation to work well with the bulky sculpt is something I have to commend. 

And what a sculpt this is.

All around the figure, there are little details popping out, helped along by the gold over black color scheme of the figure, and here's where the super-detailed finish of most SIC designs really work.

 When you have an over-complicated show design like the ultimate form and amp it up to eleven to turn it into rising, It fumbles when you see the costume, but it looks more graceful when turned into a toy.

the figure is full of curves and sharp ends, much like the Wolf Orphnoch, but not as pointed. 

The paintjob is also very nice, with a shiny gold supplementing (or overtaking) the matte black parts, some gold trim on a few areas, and a dark ink wash in others, It's a good mix of different finishes (gloss, semi-gloss, matte) and really gives a layered look to the figure. 

The figure is lacking in the accessories department though, offering only an alternate, black eyed head and some hands as well as the cap on the back of the belt, that covers the hole you use to peg it on a tamashii stand.

A huge bonus for this figure would have been the inclusion of a base or an effect part like the Mighty form, but the figure is still cool even without it. If you bought multiples of Mighty form for whatever reason, like I did, then you'll have no problems with the lack of a stand.

But man, the package was so bare. 

Whatever problems people had with the Mighty form are back in some way with Rising Ultimate, he has that small torso joint again that makes him a bit tiny compared to the rest of the line. Something that really takes away from the powered up and bulky look of the figure.

As imposing as he is on his own he looks so short when paired up with other figures like decade. If this bothers you like it does me, just swap out his torso joint for Decade's (and with that you're obligated to get Decade! hahaha).

Overall, Rising Ultimate Kuuga is a great figure, wonderfully sculpted, well articulated and very tight joints from the outset. It suffers a bit from a lack of accessories beyond alternate parts but I'd recommend buying him still, regardless if you're a full scale SIC collector or a Kiwami Tamashii fan. 

Or even if you're not.

He retails locally for 950 PHP ($23.14), but I got mine for 169HKD ($21.81) While on vacation in Hong Kong

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