Saturday, May 5, 2012

I'm A Grown Man And I Bought This: Redakai Gold Bruticon And Metanoid

Redakai, as near as I can determine, is some sort of collectible card came (the kind that's the bane of every parent's pocketbook). The game is supported by an animated TV show and an action figure line. I know nothing about the card game and I rarely watch TV anymore so I can't vouch for the existence of the show. All I know from is action figures.

There are two differently scaled Redakai figure lines: a smaller 4" series (that I will cover at a later date) and a larger 8" to 10" line that I'm covering today. As far as I know the larger line consists of just two figures, Gold Bruticon and Gold Metanoid.

So far the only place I've seen these larger figures is at Target. They must have thought the line was going to be really popular because they ordered a metric sh*t ton of them. Sadly the figures sat undisturbed on the shelf for many months, which is really too bad, because they're quite cool.

Why the lack of consumer interest? Possibly because no one knows what the hell they are. Kids are like lemmings; they like to follow the herd. They want toys based on Pokemon and Star Wars and other recognizable properties. They don't want a room full of toys from some card game that Aunt Edna assumes is cool and that none of their friends play, lest they become the laughingstock of the playground.

Another likely reason these figures were shunned: the cost. Each of these figures were priced at a whopping $20 smackers. That's just way too much for an action figure, even one of this size. Target finally came to their senses and marked them down to a much more reasonable $4.78. There's no way in hell I would have ever paid $20 each for these figures, but $4.78 is a steal, so I bought them.

The figures are sculpted quite well, and are surprisingly articulated. The Metanoid figure looks somewhat like a robotic gorilla, what with his oversized arms and tiny legs. Unfortunately he's my least favorite of the two. The body looks OK, but there's something about its head that's very off-putting to me. I wish the head looked more like a gorilla's.

Note those large spikes on each shoulder. Bad design. The first time he raises his arm those two spikes are going to impale the sides of his head.

The Gold Bruticon figure is my favorite. I don't know what it is, but something about the design just speaks to me. I love this thing, and can't quit looking at it. Did that come out weird?

Maybe I like this figure so much because it looks like something I drew. Seriously, look at it-- that's my illustration style come to life. Especially that face. I know for a fact I've drawn eyes and ears exactly like that before.

The Bruticon figure comes with a removable chest plate. The plate covers a large oval screen in the middle of the figures chest. It's a bit of a struggle to get it snapped securely in place. If you end up buying this for a kid, the chest plate is one of those pieces that'll instantly get lost, until you step on it in the middle of the night when you get up to get a drink of water.

There's a button right under the screen that activates the light-up feature in the chest. The light is surprisingly bright, and displays a three frame animation of cartoony explosions. I've seen light up features in many other action figures before, but this is the first time I can remember seeing an animated one. It's pretty cool.

The Metanoid figure has the animated display in its chest as well.

I tried to get a good shot of the chest display, but try as I might I just couldn't. The photo above is the best I could do. My camera just isn't capable of picking out the details in the bright display. You'll have to take my word for it that it's there and it really is animated (and that I'm not imagining it).

The figure comes with several translucent lenticular cards. I assume these are part of the card game.

When you place one of the cards in a slot in the figure's back, you can change the animated display on the chest. Again, you'll just have to take my word for this, as I took several hundred photos of this feature in action, none of which came out.

A deal breaker at $20 but a steal at $4.78, I heartily recommend these two figures. For some reason the Metanoid seemed to outnumber the Bruticon figure 10 to 1 on the shelf. Figures that the coolest one was made in shorter numbers. If you hurry you should still be able to pick them up at your local Target.

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