Inside the box with Ichabod presents:

S.H.MonsterArts Wolf Predator from Tamashii Nations/Bluefin

The cold hard stare of a plastic intergalactic hunter.

 MonsterArts review time! And this one is a doozy, the Wolf Predator from the much discussed Aliens Vs Predator: Requiem. I like this one more than AvP1, mainly for the single Predator, and the outright gallons of violence that drips across the screen, compared to the general tame-ness of AvP1. When Wolf was announced, I was pretty excited.

 Right out the gate this guy is dripping with detail. The gunmetal silver for the armor, and the black fishnet design for the body suit both stand out to me.  Those paint apps are pretty great. Where this falls apart is Wolf's markings. The are so....flat. Predators have a shiny reptilian like skin, and here, the flesh is so dull and bland. The dark bicep colors just look smudged on, and I know it could be better than that.

 The backpack unit fairs much better in the paint department, the copper looks so nice! But once again the flesh tones are just so damn bland. The leather sculpted into he back of the knee joint is another great touch though, and it's painted well to boot.

 Onto one of the most disappointing aspects of this figure, the articulation. The SHMA Alien nailed it, he is one of the best poseable Alien toys out there. This guy though... yikes. The upward shoulder joints stop before each arm can even get aligned with the tops of the shoulders. you can rotate the sculpt to get above the head but it's pretty limited. And the damn head and neck are almost useless. This is a combination of the dreads(which are softer and pliable) and the neck joint feeling to small.

 The elbow gets better range than the shoulder, but it still isn't great. and the inward shoulder movement sucks.

 The torso and ab joints work great when bending forward, which helps a lot, but backward motion barely exists thanks to the backpack. Not a huge loss, but still.

 The legs. Ooooh the legs. So the knee is rocking a double joint, and the hips are on that Figuarts style ball that pulls down, but for some reason the legs suck. The ankles barely move on top of that. The predator is a Lithe creature that is at home running though jungle treetops and urban environments, he crouches, crawls, and stealthily slips around his surroundings. This toy cannot crouch at all. That is a pretty big oversight in my opinion. Also he has trouble standing, like a lot of trouble. He was constantly falling over while I was shooting this review. AND his knee-pads like to pop out of the knees. They are diecast so there's that.

 He has the wrist device, but it has zero paint apps on the inside and just sits there opening way to easily. Normally I wouldn't fault that but it became a chore to make sure it didn't jostle open while moving him.

 He does come with a ton of stuff though. 

 Swapping out the wrist blades is pretty easy, but I suggest removing the hand then removing the blades, then placing the hand back in, then the blades. At least when going from short to long. They go in and out with just enough friction I don't think they will fall out accidentally.

 Hey, it's that tiny vile full of blue evidence dissolving liquid. This was literally created to explain how Aliens were on earth before the Alien movies. It is nice clear blue plastic cast in a dark blue, and he can hold it, or holster it no problem.

 The dumb syringe he used to get the trail of the aliens. I don't know why this was packed in here instead of numerous other accessories. He has a hand that can hold it, but really, this is all you need to see of it.

 The awesome whip. This is sculpted well, and painted well across both versions. The extended one does not move though, so it's kinda stuck in that awkward mid swing pose. Also I really really recall the whip being black, but that could have been movie lighting.

 The spears. The closed one doesn't like to stay pegged into the back at all on my copy. The extended one fits snugly in the hands made for it. The paintwork and sculpting is well done here though. Also the tips are kind of sharp, so be careful. 

 Hey, I can hold my spear unlike other versions from other companies!

 He also comes with a unmasked head, which I think looks ROUGH. The chin is to large, the paint work on the top of the head is very bland, and the seams, oh god the mandible seams! To extrapolate, the head's paintwork is way simpler than it was in the movie, and they could and SHOULD have done better. The mandible seams are also pretty atrocious. This head has better poseability than the masked head, but swapping the heads is way way way more difficult than it should be. I actually broke part oft he backpack off, and had to super glue it in just trying to swap the heads. Swing and a miss.

 The mandible seams are so bad because they can swap out. Now he is roaring.

 I actually think these look way better than the "closed" ones. But the seams are still apparent. Ugh.

 He does look very angry when using them and weapons though.

 Scale wise, this dude is huge, and feels like he fits in with my Bugmen, as predators are over 7ft tall.

 And here he is with fellow MonsterArts toy Burning Godzilla. I really just wanted a excuse to take a picture of G though.

 You all knew this was coming, right?

 They do look good fighting each other, I have to say.

So, this figure. I kinda don't like him. I didn't have fun photograph him, and every step felt like a chore. And I wanted to like him! I actually enjoy this design and movie. In some poses and stances he looks great, but getting him there, and getting him to stand up is a challenge. The AvP Alien was pretty well done, considering but this guy just didn't work for me. I don't think it's trash, just didn't hit the notes I was looking for. He's available for purchase here, and for a pretty decent price. the "Heavy Armed" version is coming out soon. It's this toy but with a whole new weapon set. That one is available Here and if you only get one, get that one. 

This is the first outing for a real humanoid monster by the SHMA team, and it needs work but has potential. Hopefully they will do the P1 and P2 preds way down the line. 

This product was provided courtesy of Bluefin.

1 comment:

  1. This was such an emotional roller coaster for me. First it was like "wow! Monsterarts Predator!" then it was "oh... AVP" then, months later I see the preview pic and go back to "wow that looks great!"

    And then, of course, it ends up kind of crappy which is a shame. Stop playing with my emotions!