Friday, 26 February 2016

Original Figure Review - X-Plus Toho 30cm Series Godzilla 2014 Roaring Ver.

"Dog goes woof, cat goes meow.
Bird goes tweet, and mouse goes squeak.
Cow goes moo. Frog goes croak, and the elephant goes toot.
Ducks say quack and fish go blub, and the seal goes OW OW OW.
But there's one sound that no one knows...


X-Plus has hit us once more with their chunky 30cm tall Godzilla 2014 vinyl figure with some notable changes. This figure was a RIC/Bandai Premium Web Shop exclusive, only made available domestically in Japan. If you are lucky to come across one at this time, the best method of acquiring it would be through a middle man. In my case I went through Jamie Davis of ToySPLOSION Japanese Toy and Figure Services on Facebook when I preordered mine back in November 2015. He is a SUPER nice guy, easy to talk to, and provides awesome service. He's the best! 

So, how does this figure stack up on its own and with its predecessor? Let us take a look!

I will keep this review rather brief. Since this figure possesses the same exact body sculpt as the original, please refer to my original X-Plus Toho 30cm Series Godzilla 2014 figure review. I will mainly focus on the new head sculpt, dorsal plates, and coloration in this particular review.

The X-Plus Toho 30cm Series Godzilla 2014 Roaring Ver. is a brand new variant on the already existing 30cm Godzilla 2014 figure. Both this and the original share two things in common: the body sculpt, and base skin color. Everything else somewhat different.

The notable differences between the original and the roaring version are notably the new head sculpt and blue dorsal plates. However, one will notice that some of the paint work on the figure is different too, which we will cover in a little bit.

The new head sculpt features an extended neck and wide open jaw, as if Godzilla is bellowing out a piercing loud roar. I really admire this particular head sculpt over the original. The eyes seem to be more inset within the head, and the details inside the mouth are very well done. The eyes are not plain white with black pupils as they were on the original. This figure's eyes have a slightly yellowish tint and a hint of gloss to give them a shine. They look far better (especially when seen in person) compared to the first. The mouth color is a bit more saturated than the original figure as well, giving it a bit more "life" to it, if that makes any sense. The small needle-like teeth are individually painted and nicely sculpted. 

Interestingly enough, this was the head sculpt that we were supposed to have got with the original 30cm Godzilla 2014 release, but instead we got the more neutral head sculpt. The original idea was that both the standard and RIC come with both head sculpts, which could be switched out for one or the other. However that plan did not come into fruition and the standard 30cm Godzilla 2014 came with just the figure and the RIC came with a miniature figure of the Male MUTO, which I think was somewhat better. Still, it is nice that X-Plus did not let the roaring head go to waste!

Starting from the tip of the tail and going up until the back of Godzilla's head, the dorsal plates are sculpted in a translucent blue vinyl with highlights and shades sprayed on to give it the illusion that they are glowing. While there is no light-up feature with this figure, light can pass through easily through the spines. Most reviewers, myself among them, do not recommend customizing the figure and adding in LEDs for the procedure could potentially ruin the figure due to how the dorsal plates are blocked off by a chunk of vinyl inside the figure. However, if anyone wishes to attempt such a project, by all means, good luck! 

The way the dorsal plates look on camera does not do the figure total justice, in my opinion, and it is best experienced in person.

The original figure and the roaring version share the same base coating of paint for the skin, however, the highlighting and shading on the figure is pretty different. The original had more brighter highlights of beige on its jaw, underside and more pronounced claws and toes. The roaring version seems to have an unofficial "night time" color scheme, much like with X-Plus' 30cm Gigan. The underside of the roaring version is a darker brown, there are no more highlights on the jaw, instead of beige, and the claws and toes are a duller shade of brown as well in contrast to the original. Also, along the roaring figure's body, there are specks of subtle blue highlights, as if reflecting the glow of the dorsal plates. These slight deviations from the original may seem small, but they totally make this figure stand out against the original.

Here is the roaring Godzilla 2014 scaled next to X-Plus' 30cm Gamera 1999 figure. A Kaiju duet!

To conclude the review, what do I think of the figure overall?

I really, really love it! The roaring head is suited to this particular sculpt and when looking at it from the left, it looks as if X-Plus was trying to replicate Godzilla's victory roar pose after he decapitated the female MUTO towards the end of the 2014 film. The blue dorsal plates definitely give the figure a bit more life to it instead of them just being skin colored like the original. With that being said, do I prefer this over the original? I somewhat share the same sentiment as Rich Eso mentioned in his review for this figure. By having this figure, I have a new admiration for the original and vice versa. They're the same but different simultaneously. That's what I like about this figure. Even though it shares the same body sculpt, enough about it is different that makes you think that this is an entirely different figure.

I recommend this figure wholeheartedly. It might not be for everyone, but if you love or at least have a soft spot of Godzilla 2014, then get this one. Even if you have the original, I still recommend it. It is different enough for you to give a damn. The blue dorsal plates and roaring head sculpt add a bit more flare to the sculpt more so than the neutral original figure.

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