So all March long we’re going to be highlighting special reviews of robot figures and what better way to get into the mood for robots than with a Revoltech. The toy line is named Revoltech, for it’s special revolver joint system and was started by a company called Kaiyodo in 2006, who had previously made their name in Japanese “garage kits” and is primarily sculpted by Yamaguchi Katsuhisa. The general release schedule for Revoltech is two figures per month. Not counting spin offs series and some special editions, there have been 85 Revoltech figures. Most are anime robots, but Revoltech is expanding it’s line to encompass lots of new characters like Kaiju from Gamera and Godzilla, plus Predator, Alien and much more.


Overman: King Gainer
5 Inch Scale
By: Kaiyodo
2006
$20.00 (Then) – $15 & Above (Now)

King Gainer comes from an anime of the same name. Gainer is actually a giant robot. In the anime, a kid steals an “Overman robot” and uses his gamertag (Like on Xbox) as his name. Thus he becomes Overman: King Gainer. It sounds neat in premise, but I must confess I’ve never seen a single piece of this anime and I likely never will.

A lot of people have a hard time understanding buying into a figure that you know nothing about. Personally I remember as a kid I used to buy all sorts of cool looking toys without knowing much about them. The entire Shogun Warriors line was based upon this premise. Buy a cool robot figure, make up your own storyline. The Revoltech line doesn’t cover a full series of figures, it generally picks out two or three popular characters from an anime and makes figures of them.

Packaging:
Revoltechs all come in similar packages, although some of the later series do offer up some variations on the same idea. In essence these are small boxes with a window on the front showing off what is inside. A simple paper wrap and couple pieces of tape hold the box closed.


Generally speaking, the box is nice. It’s that sort of chic minimalist design that you get with Apple products. The market in Japan is a lot different than that of America, so these are actually aimed moreso at collectors than little kids. American kids are basically little savages, so a package like this would never work at your local TRU.


On the side you get a nice graphic picture of King Gainer in blue. This doesn’t seem all that eye appealing, but as you collect more and more Revoltechs, you can actually display the boxes like this. Each one has a side panel like this, though in varying colors. I’ve seen some pretty impressive displays of Revoltech boxes. Every Revoltech is numbered in the regular series. Gainer is an early figure at #7.


The other side shows off the Revoltech joint and explains a bit about it. In laymen’s terms it’s a “clicky” joint. This means it ratchets so that it holds poses tightly.


The back shows off some incredible poses with the figure and gives some more general information. The Japanese text reads: “Revoltech’s King Gainer is the pinnacle in excellence of flawless design and ingenuity. He is generally regarded as one bad mamma jamma and can slice and dice you in 14 different ways. He enjoys long walks in the park and Ron Popeil infomercials…” Actually I have no clue what any of that says. I don’t read Japanese. I’m not that cool.

Sculpt:
I was drawn to King Gainer, largely because of his cool design. This doesn’t look like your standard Japanimation robot. Sure there is certainly something VERY Japanese about him, but he looks different than a lot of anime flair. He reminded me a bit of the robots on the old Bots Master cartoon. “My name is Ninjzz. The guy with hinges and how I use my sword, it singes!”


King Gainer is full of lots of unique charm. His head has these sort of dreadlock things going on. His colors are a bright mix of white, yellow, red and dark blue. There’s a little green sprinkled in too. He looks a little like ASIMO the Honda robot.


The sculpt is just loaded with details throughout and the Revoltech joints seamlessly mesh into the design. He has sort of weird feet, that don’t look like regular feet but scream Reeboks for Robots or something. Needless to say this is a pretty cool sculpt, even if you have no point of reference.


I don’t personally see a “giant robot” here. I see a smaller, sleek ninja style robot. Japan spent a long time defining what a giant robot was and then they’ve spent the last 20 years completely reinventing what a giant robot is. I don’t really dig the sleek giant robots, so I see this guy as a robot without a “driver” as it were.


In fact I sort of see him as some sort of intergalactic space robot Usagi Yojimbo type character. Hey, like I said, this figure is a clean slate as far as I’m concerned. I can do what I want with him.

Articulation:
Unlike a lot of ratcheting joints this just barely moves, meaning it’s not jumping from place to place as you ratchet it around. Finally and perhaps most importantly, the joint isn’t connected to anything. This simply means that the joint functions solely as a joint and the two pieces fit on the ends, allowing you swivel on both ends, plus the ratcheting. When used properly a Revoltech joint can be a masterpiece in articulation.


I’m not even going to attempt to count all the articulation points on this figure. So sue me. I don’t even know how to begin. Does a single Revoltech joint count as three different points of articulation? Whatever the case this guy has 14 Revoltech joints including the four in his hair. He also has some unique swiveling cuts on the legs and arms. It’s a bit hard to explain how they work, but you get most of the same range of motion that you would get in a swivel hinge, but it’s done differently.


In a nutshell, this guy is VERY poseable. However Revoltechs may not be for everyone. They are fiddly, and it takes a little getting used to. Once you get the hang of it you’ll find yourself putting this guy into all kinds of neat poses, but it’s a learning process if you’ve never handled a Revoltech before.


Perhaps there is even a learning curve when it comes to Revoltechs. The longer you have them, the better you are at posing them. At the end of the day though, this guy gives you way more articulation than anything Hasbro, Mattel, Mezco, NECA or any of the big boys here in the states are offering. It might be done differently, but if it wasn’t, then it wouldn’t be Japanese would it?


Scale wise these guys can be a little all over the place. Gainer here is a little over 5 inches, but some can be up to 6 inches. That said, they aren’t going to be to scale with standard 6 inch American figures. Revoltechs mostly have their own scale and are pretty interchangeable with each other, though not always.

King Gainer generally has some awesome posing potential because of his hair. That allows you to create a false sense of “wind”. So he can be diving, swooping, jumping, flying, etc. The hair element really adds a lot in that sense.

Accessories:
Revoltechs are known for their accessories. However they can sometimes widely vary in the sheer amount that they have. Sometimes a figure like Soltic H8 Round Facer will only have a few. In a review I have coming up soon, you’ll see a Revoltech with about 500 billion accessories. King Gainer is sort of in the middle. He has way more than a lot of American toys give you, but an unimpressive number by Revoltech standards.


To start with you get two extra sets of hands, for a total of 6 pairs of hands. The hands are fists, gripping hands and those weird sort of kung-fu/diving hands that you’ve seen in a few of the pictures. It’s great having all these hands and it makes for lots of fun posing potential, but I will cut the BS and say that at times it can be a pain in the ass to change the hands. Some Revoltechs change hands easily, some don’t. Gainer’s hands are on Revoltech joints which means it’s more of a hassle to change the hands. Not impossible mind you, just more daunting.


He also comes with a stand that’s pretty good for posing and it breaks into two parts. Finally he has his laser chainsaw sword gun. Yep, laser chainsaw sword gun. It’s a gun, it’s a sword, it’s a laser chainsaw. It has two blades, the normal and the laser chainsaw blade. It’s easy to switch between the two.


All of this certainly ups the play value with these figures. That said, kids would probably have some difficulty.


To finish things off, King Gainer has some sort of laser force field circle thingy… Yeah I don’t really know what it’s use is, but it looks cool.


It makes for great flying poses, or force field ones. It connects to two of his “hair” pieces. This thing is also on two Revoltech joints, which means you can do a lot of posing with it as well. Though it’s generally intended for a pretty neutral pose.

Additional Notes:
And then there’s this… Any joint that’s a Revoltech joint can be removed. That means you can swap any piece with any other piece that will fit in that Revoltech slot. That’s where Revoltechs more or less become Legos. I’m surprised I don’t see more people playing up this aspect of Revoltech, because it makes any figure limitless to customization.


Say for example that you didn’t like King Gainer’s hair. You could simply pop off the hair pieces, then remove the Revoltech joints (if any are stuck you can pull them out with a pair of pliers wrapped in a towel) and replace them with, oh I don’t know… A bunch of extra hands.


Now he’s ready to shake your hand and punch you in the face with his head!


Hey he’s crazy customizable. That was the first thing that popped into my head, hand head.


If you just generally don’t like the hair, you can remove those pieces and he still looks pretty good.


The basic holes in his head actually look pretty good and fit in with his overall theme.


Maybe you really like the hair and want to make it his head. Now he’s Mr. Noodle Head.


If you had say, two King Gainers you could swap their boots out. That way they can have matching boots, instead of one large boot gauntlet and one small.


Or take one of those extra legs and plug it into his arm, then plug a noodle hair piece in and make this weird Cricket mitt arm guy.


Swap out his legs with Patabors! The possibilities are really quite diverse depending on what Revoltechs you have and what your imagination is. Essentially you can break this figure down to almost his entire set of pieces and rebuild him as you like… And because of the stiffness of the Revoltech joints, you don’t have to worry about him becoming loose.

Value:
These guys all originally retailed for about 2,000 Yen, which is roughly $20. Most Revoltechs coming out now run a little closer to $30 depending on where you order them. That’s certainly not cheap, but the quality is there. King Gainer is a good entry point to Revoltech because he’s a very old Revoltech, #7, so you can get him for under $15. I actually paid less than retail value for two. Sweet.


“WHO WANTS TO DIE?!”

Score Recap:
Packaging – 9
Sculpting – 10
Articulation – 10
Accessories – Extra Hands X2, Removable Belt, Gun Sword, Chainsaw Blade, Stand, Neon Circle
Value – 9
Overall – 9.5 out of 10


King Gainer is a brilliant toy. This is the kind of toy that you will love once you get your hands on him. He’s well sculpted, comes with plenty of accessories and has as much potential as your mind can allow. He’s very close to a 10 out of 10 but the hassle of changing the hands takes a little away from his overall score. There is a Revoltech learning curve, but if you’re tired of the stale American market toys or just like cool Robots, the Revoltech line is for you. CATCH EM’ ALL!


7 Responses to Revoltech – Overman: King Gainer Figure Review

  • Bill says:

    In all my travels through the halls of geekdom, I have never heard of these figures. They look really cool. Where did you get them?

  • You can find them at a variety of online retailers. You just have to search around a bit. Ebay is always a good choice too. Just search for Revoltechs. And if you're serious about buying some, it's definitely best to shop around. Some figures who are $20 at some stores, can be had for less than half that at other stores.

  • clark says:

    I have "almost" bought this guy so many times, I think I've seen him for under $13 recently, so I guess I may have to reconsider. Great Review, thanks Newt!

  • IhLoneWolfxx says:

    great review Newt, how cool would've this guy been in a WAR. One of the first 5 or 6 picked for sure

  • Yeah he would have been popular.

  • Annette says:

    I bought a King Gainer for like 8 bucks on Amazon. It's a pretty badass figure (the anime is fun, too). Sadly, when trying some new poses and stuff, my husband managed to break off one of King Gainer's…leg-pocket-things. I almost cried. He's languishing in his box until I remember to pick up some glue.

  • Ouch. Bummer. Then again, that's what husbands do. Break stuff. Hope you get him back to his anime butt kicking righteousness soon.

Leave a Reply