6 Inch Scale
$60 (price varies)
I could talk for days about how Godzilla influenced my life and interests, but I think you can just look through this site for more information on that. Suffice to say, I’m a HUGE Godzilla fan and a lover of then entire giant monster movie genre. Big G Money himself is the catalyst for all of that, so when Bandai unleashed the MonsterArts figures onto the world, I had to have them.
Bandai promised all kinds of articulation, excellent high quality sculpting and a (somewhat) affordable price. It’s just about everything a hardcore kaiju junkie like myself could ask for. To top things off, Bandai was starting with what I consider to be arguably the best “basic” Godzilla design on the them all. The modern Heisei version. It’s a perfect starting point for a new line of monster toys.
We’ve definitely come a long way from the old Imperial Godzilla, but does this Godzilla toy really prove to be the best action figure EVER of the big guy? Is this finally a fitting figure form for the King of the Monsters? Read on to find out, because the answer might surprise you!
The box is pretty fantastic, using some window box elements but also not just offering up a retread of old window box designs. There’s a great bright red photo of Godzilla from the era, in the midst of one of his iconic screams. It almost looks like he’s about to let loose with some of his atomic death breath.
The package is sturdy, thick and not too loaded down with pointless language. It’s also a largely American friendly package, with tons of English language on it.
The neatest part of the presentation is the top window using the Godzilla logo shape. It reminds me of the old NES Godzilla game, which used a similar font. Oh the many hours I spent looking at that logo on the cartridge shoved in my Nintendo, fighting Gezora level after level. And of course, some epic battles with Moguera, years before Godzilla ever fought him in film… But I digress.
It would be easy to start off by saying Bandai has outdone itself and this is the greatest Godzilla sculpt and paint work they’ve ever done, yadda, yadda… But the truth is, Bandai has done hundreds if not thousands of Godzilla figures through the years and for the most part they’re all sculpted and painted well.
What can be said for this figure in particular, is that it’s a cut above the rest. It’s not 1,000X better, it’s just better. The likeness is pretty much spot on to the era of this character and the design is largely flawless. Little details such as the eyes are captured with incredibly vivid paint work.
The paint work on the figure is quite good and little details like the fingers and spines are done quite well. Again, it’s hard to say that they’re epically better than some of the cheaper Bandai America efforts, but they are superior. The truth is, Bandai even at the worst know how to make Godzilla. They’ve made more Godzilla figures than anyone.
He looks pretty imposing from almost all angles.
The scale is considerable bigger than the Gamera Revoltech figures, but those run a bit small anyway so it’s to be expected. Unfortunately this means you likely won’t be able to fudge any of the Godzilla Revoltech figures, either.
“How can they mistake us?”
They’re a closer fit with the regular Bandai vinyls, though.
The face, mouth and teeth are probably the highlights of the paint and sculpting. There’s a ton of emotion that can be conveyed with even the slightest of movements. This is thanks in no small part to the work in these areas.
It’s a nice figure, with a lot of size if you look at the tail and wide thighs.
The tail is also pretty damn impressive, stretching to about 7-8 inches itself. There’s more tail than there is figure, head to toe.
I think everyone will generally be impressed with the paint and sculpt here, but perhaps not the size. Many folks still associate Godzilla figures with being huge and robust and that’s just not the case here. It’s not dinky by any means, but it won’t tower over your other figures either.
So if we’ve had some pretty awesome sculpted Godzilla figures in the past, what makes this guy special? Well the articulation is one of the biggest selling points. The S.H. MonsterArts Godzilla is the most poseable this character has ever been, short of the actually ones appearing in film.
You can more or less get Godzilla to do the Shie Dance. That says a lot about the articulation.
The movement in the head, neck and mouth is very lifelike and quite adaptable. This is easily the best feature of the figure, in my view.
However, it’s not all sunshine and Mothras. There is a lot of restriction in many of these joints. The legs aren’t that good. In fact there is more forward movement with the old Bandai vinyls than the poses you can get with these.
But on the flip side of that, you can get this figure into poses that no other Godzilla figure before it has been capable of.
I don’t think the articulation is bad by any means, but I wasn’t as blown away by the articulation on this figure as I was with say the Revoltech Gamera or Figma Robocop. It’s good, but not revolutionary.
Of course you can probably move him about as much as any guy in the rubber suit could have moved around, so make of that what you will.
The tail is probably the most impressive piece and each and every segment is articulated. However, once again, it’s more show than function. While you can get some movement in the tail, all the articulated pieces don’t equal out to being much more articulated than if it was a solid piece with one or two joints.
Bandai and fellow high end Japanese toy makers always jam pack figures like this full of accessories. So of course, this figure will be loaded down with goodies, right?
WRONG! You get a atomic death breath with an odd little stand and that’s it.
That’s gonna leave a mark…
It looks absolutely fantastic, but it’s awkward the way it’s connected to a large stand. I can’t tell if the stand is supposed to be water, fire or just “effects”. It’s rather large, but the spray just feels less fun than those of the Gamera figures.
The fact that this is the ONLY accessory and future reissues may not even include this, is a huge negative in my book. There’s just SO MUCH that could come with this guy. The box feels huge and empty when you open it and this is the only accessory contained within. I want some masers!
This is an expensive figure. Even though Bandai is getting these released here into America, we’re not getting much if any of a price break. Which means you can’t even pass off that this is an “import” and feel better about yourself. Bandai is marketing these figures to the west, but we’re still paying outrageous prices.
The problem is that Kaiyodo has already set the standard here, as has Figma and even Bandai itself with the Ultra-Act and S.H. FiguArts lines. In a nutshell, this figure comes with virtually nothing in comparison to those lines, but costs even MORE than they do. It’s just unacceptable. Bandai knows they can get away with it because it’s Godzilla… But that still doesn’t make it right.
Packaging – 8
Sculpting – 9
Paint – 9
Articulation – 8
Accessories – Atomic Death Breath w/stand
Value – 7
Overall – 9 out of 10
Godzilla still gets a 9, but it’s with hesitation. Compare this figure with something like the Ultra-Act Ultraman, which costs about half as much, has a ton more accessories and poseability and you’ll see why I’m just not as impressed with this guy. Is he the best Godzilla figure in terms of posing, ever released? Probably.
Is he the best Godzilla figure ever made? Probably. Is he worth $60? Not really. And that’s my problem with this figure. The value just isn’t there. The prices for this line just keep going up and while the figures are nice, they are not the end-all be-all of Godzilla toys. There are much cheaper alternatives that may lack a little of the sizzle, but are still quite good.