Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Lucky Toy Find Part II: Votoms Transforming Mini Figures

A few posts ago (just scroll down) was the first lucky toy find: a set of Votoms gashapon mini figures I found on Anime King's site on eBay. I was so happy with the set that I immediately went back looking for more toy loot. In Anime King's list of close to 200 sets of gashapon figures, I stumbled across this interesting set from Takara called the "K-T Collection DX" as in deluxe or something. From the picture, it was hard to tell exactly what you get. It looked like some of the Votoms figures were in the kneeled "unload" position and some were standing up right. I thought to myself: "meh, who wants that?" Upon closer inspection of the picture, you could see that it looked like the Votom actually transformed somehow from upright to the unload mode. Now this was getting interesting. If these little figures were the same size as the other set I purchased, they would be about 3 inches tall and some of the smallest transforming mecha in existence. I was intrigued. I emailed Winsum at Anime King and asked for clarification. He immediately replied and said that "yes, in fact, ALL of them transform..." Say no more, I ordered them right away and waited with great interest to see what these little babies could do. They arrived pretty quick from Anime King and I immediately started opening them up to see the tranforming mechanism. The first thing I noticed was that they were made out of the same kind of resin-plastic like material that the first Votoms set was made out of. There was great care in packing the tiny visor with the little antennae to ensure it did not break during transport. You see right away that these guys are indeed tiny. They just about the size of a Kubrick. You can see for comparison sakes here a Votoms Kubrick next to one of these transforming Votoms. How cool is that? Then I noticed this strange aparatus on the backs of the figures with a big strut that jutted out from the shoulder area and a metal rod attached to it. There was also a little metal horizontal bar in the back that something else attached to. So it doesn't look all that great from the back, but from the front, it's very highly detailed indeed. The visor flips up and you can actually see the teeny tiny Chirico pilot inside. The entire figure is fully pained with loving care and the pilot can't be larger than your pinky nail. He's really small! Each figure also comes with a base that I thought at first was just cosmetic, but in reality, it plays an integral part in the transformation! You plant the Votom on this set of pegs on the base and then you attach this little arm that is incorporated in the base to the metal horizontal bar in the back of the Votom. Then the magic happens: When you pull up on the lever, it makes the Votoms kneel and at the same time opens the cockpit automaically to show the pilot! The first time I did the transformation, I actually giggled like a little girl! Pull the lever down and the Votom goes back upright, closing the cockpit automatically. It's seriously one of the coolest figures in my collection - and I have an entire set! Having given high praise, I must tell you that they are a bit fragile and one of the figures lost a hinge on the cockpit so it doesn't open and close all that well. When you try to display them without the stand, they do look like they have a stick up their rear, but these are small complaints and should not dis-suade you in the least from purchasing this fine, very unique and I think somewhat rare set of Votoms figures. A MUST for any Votoms fan and even just a mecha fan! Get 'em while they last for a mere $25 at AnimeKing


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