Anyone who knows me knows I’m an absolute fiend when it comes to collectible figurines.
Yer man Scullion currently owns a complete set of 70 Lego Dimensions characters, a complete set of 105 Disney Infinity figures, 116 amiibo – incomplete, because nobody needs two Kirbys – and precisely zero Skylanders (because obviously).
Later in March the first wave of Totaku figures hits the UK and US. They’re going to be sold exclusively at Gamestop in the US, and in a handful of stores in the UK (most notably GAME).
Given my obsession with collecting similar figures, you’d hopefully agree that I’d be the man to trust when it comes to reviewing these Totaku thingies.
It’s fortunate, then, that I’m lucky enough to currently have final samples of the first six figures, and I’ve managed to secure them before anyone else.
Friends, here is your world exclusive first review of Totaku figures #01 to #06.
The video review
First things first, if you prefer your reviews in video form, I’ve got you covered. Here’s my full 25-minute review in which I look at each figure in detail, show the packaging and compare each to a similar amiibo figure so you can get an idea of size.
For those craving written words and detailed photos instead, keep scrolling.
The written review
Hello, word fans. Right, let’s get cracking.
Despite how they were originally reported, Totaku are not ‘PlayStation figures’. Granted, the vast majority of toys in these early waves are from PlayStation properties, and all six here are either PlayStation exclusives or are from series that are most closely associated with Sony’s system.
That said, one of the other early figures – number 12 in the series – is a Gold Hoarder from Sea Of Thieves, an Xbox One exclusive. To be clear, then, this is not a case of “Sony copying amiibo”, as many cynical types have been claiming. Maybe someone else copying them, but not Sony.
Let’s address that plastic 10cm elephant in the room first, then: these were blatantly inspired by other licensed toys-to-life products, most notably amiibo. And that isn’t a bad thing: when amiibo occasionally stray outside of Nintendo territory it tends to be great (the Pac-Man amiibo is still my favourite one ever, and the Ryu, Bayonetta, Cloud and Sonic ones are among the best in the series too).
One thing it doesn’t borrow from similar figurine series is NFC functionality. Since they aren’t tied to a particular licence, game or platform, Totaku figures can’t be scanned or placed on any sort of USB base: their job is to look pretty and nothing else.
And hey, there’s nothing wrong with that: that’s my job too, sometimes. The important thing is that when it comes to looking good, Totaku definitely tick that box.
AMIIBO HEIGHT COMPARISON GALLERY:
Before I look at the figures separately, there will be some wondering how smoothly these will integrate with their existing amiibo figures. The answer is that it depends. Totaku figures differ in height, and the taller ones are noticeably bigger than amiibo.
Stand the Heihachi Totaku next to the Ryu amiibo, for example – as I do in my video above – and it’s clear that Heihachi stands roughly a head taller. In situations like that, they don’t really gel seamlessly together.
On the other hand, the smaller Totaku do blend in a lot easier. Crash, Sackboy and PaRappa are a similar height to certain amiibo, meaning they look a lot better side-by-side.
As you can see in the sample pics above, the Hunter from Bloodborne makes even relatively tall amiibo look small in comparison, whereas Sackboy and Crash are a much better fit.
With careful planning, then, you could probably have a line where your amiibo collection ends and your Totaku collection starts, and have the latter gradually increase in height.
Yes, I’m being very nerdy, but this shit is important, dammit.
You may also notice that each base is shaped like a cross. This is because they’re designed to be interlinked, making it easier for you to bring the figures closer together when displaying them.
This is a nice touch – I’ve often wished amiibo bases were a little narrower so that smaller figures could stand closer together and I could fit more on a shelf – but it’s also worth bearing in mind that you need to be clever with how you lay them out. As you can see in the photo above, it can get a bit crowded and some (like the WipEout ship here) can get in the way of others.
That all said, let’s move on to the individual figures. Click any of the images to examine them in more detail.
#01 – Sackboy
Up first is the cheery Sackboy from LittleBigPlanet, celebrating its 10th anniversary this year.
Of all the figures in the first wave, Sackboy is probably the least exciting but only because there have been loads of LittleBigPlanet figures in the past.
Toy company NECA released two series of Sackboy figures a couple of years back, featuring the burlap bloke in a variety of expressions and outfits.
Way back in 2011 there were also Sackboy Superstars, little mini 2-inch figures dressed in different costumes.
All this basically means is that if you’re a massive LittleBigPlanet fan then chances are you may already have a Sackboy figure or two in your collection.
Still, that’s not to say he doesn’t deserve a place here, and the Totaku version of Sackboy is as good a rendition as any I’ve seen.
His little smirk is brilliant, the detail in the ‘fabric’ and zip are great and his base is brilliant too: it looks like it’s all stitched together and has some spare buttons sewn on there for good measure.
#02 – Feisar FX350
This is perhaps the most interesting one of the bunch, because it differs most from anything seen in other similar figurine lines.
There are no vehicles like this in the amiibo or Disney Infinity series, meaning the Feisar really stands out on a shelf even when mixed in with those.
Given that it’s a hovering vehicle, it stands to reason that it really needs to have one of those annoying clear rods to keep it up in the air.
However, here’s a clever touch: the end of the rod isn’t just a straight bar going into the ship, it’s actually a ball-shaped ‘joint’ that fits into a circular hole at the bottom.
What this means is that you can tilt the ship up, down and to the side so it’s pointing at any angle you want.
The detail on this ship is cracking for the most part, especially the decals. However, as you can see in the video at the top of this article, there’s a series of small black lines at the back which initially looks a bit wobbly.
It seems they’re supposed to be a sort of criss-crossing vent but it’s too small to have any real detail so it looks like that instead. In the grand scheme of things it’s far from a deal-breaker, though, and overall I’m really happy with this one.
#03 – Crash Bandicoot
Of all the characters in this first wave, it’s fair to say that Crash Bandicoot is the one enjoying life most at the moment (well, he would be if he wasn’t a fictional character).
Last year’s remastered Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy was a massive smash hit on PS4, and if rumours are to believed it may be headed to the Switch soon too.
The manic marsupial is very much hot property again, then, so expect this to be one of the best-selling Totaku figures at launch.
Thankfully, this will be justified, because it’s a well-made figure. His skin has a light texture on it giving the impression of fur, and his expression is pretty much spot on.
His base is also quite nifty despite initially appearing quite basic. It’s essentially just sand, presumably meant to resemble the beach he wakes up on at the start of the first game.
However, the sand sort of bulges and is indented around his feet, making it really look like it’s a soft, fluid surface. It’s a nice illusion.
#04 – Heihachi Mishima
The one-time Tekken final boss made his debut before any other character in this first wave, which may explain why he looks so bloody old.
Based on his Tekken 7 look, Heihachi is probably one of the most detailed figures in this early batch, even though something about his face seems slightly off to me (which isn’t a massive problem given how small it is).
His skin is covered in dirt and scars, while his base is a concrete floor that’s littered with marks, notches and damage from previous battles.
His outfit, meanwhile, has a pretty intricate design on the back, which they’ve done a decent job of replicating.
My favourite touch, however, is his shoulder piece, which comes complete with a little horned mask.
This won’t be the only Tekken figure planned: Jin Kazama is coming the following month. This is a strong start, though.
#05 – The Hunter
I’ll be honest, Bloodborne is the only game here I haven’t played, but that’s not to say I’m not aware of its huge following among Dark Souls fans.
Those fans will be happy with what’s on offer here because the Hunter is one of the most impressive figures in the initial line-up.
He’s taller than the others – only a little taller than Heihachi but substantially bigger than the rest– and has quite a intimidating stance.
He’s also armed with two weapons: his trusty saw cleaver, and his gun. Both are intricately detailed for their size.
There’s also a very slight hint of the titular blood, too: the bottom of his coat has a clear red tint to it and his base is pretty much soaked in the red stuff.
It’s a testament to this figure that despite having never played the game, I’d have no issues having this one up on my shelf.
Besides, given that it was literally just announced today that Bloodborne will be a free PS Plus game, it looks like I’ll be playing it soon anyway.
#06 – PaRappa
Game series: PaRappa The Rapper
Debut appearance: 1996
I have wanted a PaRappa figure for years. I even bought a weird plush Japanese McDonalds PaRappa toy so that I’d have some sort of merch on my shelf.
Now the wait is over, and there’s finally a PaRappa figurine available. And it’s a wee cracker.
Given that PaRappa is a two-dimensional character – he’s literally a pixel thin in the games – it makes sense that he’d be thickened a little for the purposes of this figure.
As you can see in my video at the top of this article, anyone with a Mr Game & Watch amiibo will know what to expect here because PaRappa is pretty much the same thickness.
He’s actually more flexible, though. It feels like he’s made of a slightly different type of plastic than the rest of the figures, one that can bend a little.
Not enough that you can bend him into different shapes, mind you: trying that will result in disaster. But enough that there’s at least a wee bit of give when you try to flex him.
Top marks for the base, too, which reminds me of the loading screen in the first PaRappa The Rapper game (even though it isn’t the same design).
So there you have it, that’s the first six Totaku figures. I say the first: according to GAME’s release schedule, it seems that #12 – the Sea Of Thieves figure – may actually be launching first on 20 March, to coincide with the launch of the game. I’m waiting for confirmation on that, though.
In all, I’m very impressed with what I’ve seen so far. It’s great that games other than those published by Nintendo are going to essentially get the amiibo treatment in terms of lovingly crafted figures (if not in terms of in-game functionality), and the quality of the sculpts means they’ll fit seamlessly in with your amiibo collection, the occasional height discrepancy aside.
The only bad news is that, just as I thought completing my Disney Infinity and Lego Dimensions collections meant I’d be able to ease up on this sort of thing, it seems I may have something new to collect now.
In order that I could write this review, I received sample figures from GAME’s press agency. The content of my review and the opinions therein were in no way positively influenced by this, and I will not be keeping these figures: I’ve arranged for a courier to send them back to GAME, and I will be pre-ordering my own figures to buy and keep.
If you enjoyed this and other reviews and want to help me write them more frequently, please consider donating to my Patreon account.
Don’t want to commit to a regular payment? I’ve now got a PayPal ‘tips’ jar: if you like what you read feel free to chuck yer man Scullion a couple of quid here or there and help stock up my Irn Bru fund so I can continue working away like a bastard.
Alternatively, if you’re a UK reader and can’t afford to support me on Patreon, please do your normal Amazon UK shopping via this link. Tired Old Hack is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for me to earn fees by linking to Amazon.co.uk and affiliated sites.