G.I. Joe Collectors Club FSS 8.0 Lineup Announced

An unexpected Friday surprise!  The G.I. Joe Collectors Club has revealed the line up for the upcoming Figure Subscription Service 8.0!  This is expected to be the final FSS as the contract for the Club is expiring, and by the looks of this line up, they’re going out with a bang.

This is a pretty impressive line up, I have to be honest. I love the choices of most of these characters (with the exception of tan Clutch which feels pretty unnecessary, even if he is filling the lone “1984” slot still open).

Recoil? YES.
Capt. Grid-Iron? Love it.
Fast Draw? WOOO!
Blizzard and Bullet-Proof are great choices as well, though it feels a bit late in the game to start revisiting DEF.

My GeneralsJoes cohort Josh has some perspective as well…

Josh: This is a bittersweet day for a lot of collectors.  On one hand, we get to see some additional amazing figures from the club, but on the other hand this will be the final reveals that we will see.  With the lack of Joe coming from Hasbro the Collectors Club FSS has provided us with a steady stream of figures and I for one am going to miss the reveals and the figures arriving in the mail.  The first figure reveal for FSS 8.0 is Captain Grid-Iron.  I have to admit I have always been a huge Captain Grid-Iron fan.  Originally released in 1990 Grid-Iron spoke to my two greatest loves at the time, GI Joe and Football.  The figure is based on the original figure and will sport (no pun intended) a new helmet and re-tooled officer’s pistol.  The helmet will be removable and he will also include his signature football. 

Good stuff to close out the G.I. Joe licensing contract… check out the full list below as well as an image of Captain Grid-Iron to kick things off!

The cost of FSS 8.0 will be $384 + shipping and can be broken up into installments.  As always you will be charged an additional $6 for each installment payment.  The deadline for signup is May 2, 2018 so hurry up and sign up today.

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G.I. JOE INFANTRY OFFICER
Code Name: CAPTAIN GRID-IRON
(Inspired by the 1990 action figure.)
Features NEW helmet & re-tooled officer’s pistol!
Includes: removable helmet, armored vest, holster with pistol,
officer’s suppressor pistol, football “grenade” and figure stand.G.I. JOE MOBILE MISSILE SPECIALIST
Code Name: FAST DRAW
(Inspired by the 1987 action figure.)
Includes: removable helmet, face mask, revolver pistol,
backpack missile system with 8 projectiles, remote controls x 2,
connection hoses x 2, and figure stand.RED SHADOWS WEAPONS TECHNICIAN
Code Name: RED LASER
(Inspired by the European exclusive action figure.)
Includes: removable helmet, advanced combat rifle,
laser pistol, Red Shadows flag, and figure stand.

G.I. JOE BATTLE CORPS COMMANDER
Code Name: BULLET-PROOF
(Inspired by the 1992 action figure.)
Includes: removable grenade bandolier, pistol, knife,
rifle, rocket launcher with projectile, and figure stand.

COBRA SHOCK TROOPS COMMANDER
Code Name: LT. CLAY MOORE
(Inspired by the Sunbow cartoon & 2007 GIJCC design.)
Includes: removable helmet, grenade bandolier, pistol, knife,
assault rifle, bazooka, backpack with shells x 4, and figure stand.

G.I. JOE V.A.M.P. DRIVER
Code Name: LANCE “CLUTCH” STEINBERG
(Inspired by the 1984 version 2 action figure.)
Includes: removable helmet, vest, assault rifle,
pistol, work cones x 2, and figure stand.

G.I. JOE ARCTIC ATTACK SOLDIER
Code Name: GREG “BLIZZARD” NATALE
(Inspired by the 1988 action figure.)
Includes: removable arctic coat, sniper rifle, backpack,
skis x 2, ski poles x 2, boot cleats x 2, and figure stand.

G.I. JOE DEFIANT SHUTTLE PILOT 
Code Name: PAYLOAD
(Inspired by the 1987 action figure.)
Includes: removable helmet, MMU backpack,
control arms x 2, and figure stand.

COBRA B.A.T. LEADER
Code Name: OVER KILL
(Inspired by the 2003 version 2 action figure.)
Includes: removable helmet, harness, “human” face mask,
neckerchief, gauntlet, claw hands x 2, rivet gun,
hand-held assault weapon, and figure stand.

G.I. JOE L.R.R.P. TROOPER 
Code Name: RECOIL
(Inspired by the 1989 action figure.)
Features re-tooled mine case & dual weapon!
Includes: removable helmet, tactical harness, pistol,
assault rifle, mine case, dual tactical weapon,
backpack, combat knife, radio, and figure stand.

G.I. JOE NINJA COMMANDO
Code Name: BUSHIDO
(Inspired by the 1993 action figure.)
Features NEW samurai face mask!
Includes: removable samurai helmet with face mask,
tactical harness, double sheath with swords x 2,
Kusarigama weapon, and figure stand.

COBRA MERCENARY 
Code Name: MUNITIA
(Inspired by the 2008 DTC: GIJCC action figure.)
Features NEW head sculpt!
Includes: bladed pistol, assault rifle, radio, and figure stand.

NOTE: These modern era club exclusive action figures will not be exact replicas of their vintage counterparts.All images are Photoshop mock-up representations, final product, accessories and/or colors will vary!

The cost of the twelve-figure subscription service is $384.00 (+ shipping for 6 shipments). You can pay all at once or in three installments of $128.00 (billed to your credit card). When you subscribe and choose to pay by Installment, you will be billed for the first two month’s shipments. Then in October 2018, you will be billed for the 3rd and 4th months’ shipments and finally in December 2018, you will be billed for the final two months’ shipments. Upon subscription completion, you will receive a bonus carded 13th mystery figure with the last shipment.
Please note that for the installment payment option, there is a $6 service charge per billing while the pay in full option has one $6 service charge. Please also note that for installment buyers, there is an additional charge each time a billing is attempted if your card is not approved. If your card has been declined and we have to re-bill, we will only be able to retry your billing three (3) times before your subscription is cancelled. Each retry has an additional fee added to your total charge (please see the Terms and Conditions.)

This Figure Subscription Service is a “build to order process” so you can order as many as you like, until the order period closes. At that time, we will not process any more subscriptions and we may/may not have additional figures in the club store at a higher per figure price.

Please note that the figure previews are Photoshop mock-ups and the final product may vary. Also, the colors are approximate as some may look more glossy or metallic on your monitor screen and everyone’s computer has a different color calibration.

Final figures colors/names/accessories will vary from the descriptions and preview pictures.

G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero – 250 Issues

A guest post by Skinny

Milestone.

It is a word that you don’t hear used a lot any more. That is because they just don’t happen too much any more. Our lives today are fast, We don’t follow Ferris Bueller’s advice to stop and look around. We also don’t put our hair in a mohawk in the shower. What I mean is, life is even faster and we can only take things in chunks. Anything long lasting is intimidating. G.I.Joe from day one continues to be something that was built to last. An exception.

It all began in 1982 when Hasbro visited the Marvel Offices and sought out a creator to bring their re-envisioned version of G.I.Joe to life. Chosen by elimination, Larry Hama took what could have been a side project and infused it with real storytelling.

The late Herb Trimpe, a veteran at Marvel comics, brought his art to the table. Jim Shooter, Todd McFarlane, Rod Whigham, Ron Wagner, Andrew Wildman, Michael Goldman, Mike Zeck, Mike Vosburg and most recently S.L. Gallant, Brian Shearer, J. Brown and Netho Diaz among countless others all contributed to the success and look of G.I.Joe.

250 issues. It has run from 1982 to 1994 and then again in 2010 picking up exactly where they left off in 1994. There were a few half issues in there expanding the stories from the sidelines, but the official 250th issue comes out today.

We have seen new characters, beloved comic only characters, the deaths of characters, the rebirths of characters, minds reprogrammed, cat fights, towns taken over, civil war, alien robots, disguises, close calls, patriotism, imposters, flashbacks, characters seeing the light, ninjas, detailed locales based on reality, a little bit of advice, military jargon, comical moments, and even one issue used as the basis for a movie about a giant asteroid hurtling toward Earth. It is the golden boy and Mom’s apple pie vs Orson Welles in a hood. It is the many faces of diversity both physical and of character.

The characters as Larry has admitted in several interviews are based on the people he knows so he can keep track of them. This provides a wonderful consistency and is the main reason no one can ever really nail down the character’s essences like he can. It would be like you trying to write about someone else’s uncle. You could get some things right but there would be something missing. I would love to meet the practical joker Airtight is based on he/she must be a wild one.

G.I.Joe is centered around the life of a stand out main character, who cannot talk. Imagine creating this tragic tale of a man who expresses himself in other ways besides speech. It is indeed a tragic tale.  G.I. Joe, says Hama, is Junior woodchucks with guns. G.I. Joe takes us all around the world and back in time. G.I.Joe is different things to different people. Hama himself says it best however.

“They don’t understand the intrinsic fantasy. G.I.Joe isn’t a military fantasy, it’s not a war book, it’s a fantasy about loyalty and camaraderie. Which to a ten year old kid is an extremely powerful fantasy because every ten year old kid has been betrayed. Obviously. The idea of best friends that never let you down and will stand up for you; if you are in trouble they will come and get you. That’s a powerful fantasy and its also a fantasy of doing the right thing and having integrity without looking for the reward and about duty, and old fashioned things like that… that to a kid represents order and it’s very comforting.” (Larry Hama YoutubeInterview by Roy Turner 2018)

To center a comic around that theme, and not just make it a toy comic, pushed it into the pantheon of comics that last into the hundreds of issues. Iconic comics.

Milestones.

 

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Fantastic Vitruvian HACKS and Bucky O’Hare pictures from NJCC

This spring’s New Jersey Collectors’ Con has come and gone, and there were a ton of great reveals from the folks at Boss Fight Studio.  While we’ve already seen some sporadic images from the show floor itself, over on ToyArk they’ve posted some insane galleries featuring all of the new figures that were shown.  I’ve mirrored a small selection of their images below, but you can hit up ToyArk directly to see over 100 images of these great looking items!

This includes figures tentatively scheduled for Series 02, Waves 04 and 05:

  • Naga Serpent 
  • Barbarian
  • Gargoyle 
  • Dragon Harvester
  • Half Orc Mage
  • Psionic Warrior

Along with this, several great images of Bucky O’Hare figures were shown as well, including the previously unknown Stealth Deadeye Duck and Aniverse Bucky O’Hare releases!

Some more details were shown about the upcoming Mighty Steed Kickstarter, scheduled to hit this month, including the apparent inclusion of Aspen’s Elk!

Finally, we got a nice look at the Hellhounds, an upcoming product release from Dream Concept Studios, the folks who brought us the Zombie Lab Kickstarter not so long ago.

Man, I’m really digging the looks of those Hellhounds!

Lots of cool stuff revealed at the show, and if this is what the independent toy scene is looking like these days, I’m cool with G.I. Joe being off retail shelves for a little while.  Check out ToyArk.com for even more images than what I’ve shared above.

New Jersey Collectors Con Boss Fight Vitruvian HACKS reveals

New Jersey Collectors Con is going this weekend, and as usual the folks from Boss Fight Studio are in attendance and have revealed some paint masters for upcoming Vitruvian HACKS product!

Thanks to Matt McGrath over at the Boss Fighters Facebook Group, we’ve got some awesome first looks at Wave 4 and potentially Wave 5 product of Series 02 Vitruvian HACKS.

Wave 4 is rumored to include the following:

  • Gargoyle
  • Barbarian
  • Naga Serpent

And according to last year’s NJCC it was also supposed to include Twylla the Faerie, but it’s unknown if that’s still the plan.

We also got a look at the Dragon Harvester (who has appeared in concept art, but her specific assortment has not been announced), Orc Mage and the Psionic Warrior.

Keep posted, I’m sure there will be some more reveals throughout the weekend, especially with the Horse Kickstarter happening this month!

GeneralsJoes Reviews Boss Fight Studio Vitruvian Basics

Happy Monday and I’m adding to the review queue today with a three pack of reviews for the Vitruvian Basics line from Boss Fight Studio!  Designed as a less expensive alternative to facilitate army building and customizing, these Basics figures also manage to add some fantastic depth to the mythology and integrate real nicely with the Character Creator Kits as well.

Check out these three reviews at the Vitruvian Basics Review Page or click the links directly below.  Also don’t forget that the VitruvianFACTS Wiki Page is out there, too for some more great detail on this fantastic toy line!

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Rank & File Volumes Two and Three now LIVE on Kickstarter!

Rejoice!  Volumes 2 and 3 of James Kavanaugh, Jr’s excellent Rank & File G.I. Joe guides are now LIVE on Kickstarter and ready for funding!  Volume 2 has been sold out for a while and Volume 3 is dangerously close, so here is a perfect opportunity to get them both in production again.

Sitting at just over $1,500 already there’s a ton of great content crammed within these guides and you’re not going to want to miss out.  Check out the press release below and help get these great guides funded!

Cover Book 2 and ALT

Press Release

I am pleased to announce that, after a successful Rank & File volume 1 reprint campaign, the Kickstarter for volumes 2 and 3 is live!  These resource guides are really picking up steam and now selling out inside of a year.

The Rank & File series archives the history of 4″ G.I. Joe and currently has three volumes produced with at least three more in the works. Volume 4 is coming this summer!  This reprint was also updated to account for some carry forward action figures produced after the guide’s initial print run, as well as some additional information and error correction.  Below is the description for Rank & File volumes 2 and 3:

After a brief hiatus in 2006, G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero went in a new stylistic direction that is still predominately used today!  Fans revisited some of their most cherished icons within the G.I. Joe mythos and were introduced to new characters that are now known and loved.  Rank & File volume 1 captured these action figures in a resource guide and is currently on its second reprint.  Rank & File volum3 2 is sold out and volume 3 is days away from selling out!

The Rank & File Guide volumes 2 and 3 archive the remaining mass produced G.I. Joe product by fully displaying every G.I. Joe action figure produced between theThe Rise of CobraThe Pursuit of Cobra30th Anniversary/RenegadesRetaliation50, and G.I. Joe Basic Asst. series; complete with every accessory and variation produced.  Not only are the accessories shown alongside the action figures, they have been carefully cataloged in an upcoming volume to guarantee the proper shade of accessory goes to the appropriate action figure. To top it off, every vehicle and play set released in the 4″ era has been documented and every easily removable piece has been individually photographed, ensuring collector completion.  Theses full color, 52 page and 48 page (respectably) resource manuals beautifully illustrate the six series’ combined 328 action figures, 77 vehicles, and every accessory, including all known variations.  Not only is every accessory present and accounted for, they have each been assigned a unique number and identified throughout the resource guides.  Each action figure has been carefully examined between its initial run and further re-releases to ensure that an accurate sample is clearly and concisely presented; perfect for the collector who is identifying individual action figures or sorting through unorganized lots.

Whether you’re a seasoned or rejuvenated collector, enthusiast, or toy vendor; the Rank & File Guidebooks are the definitive compilation for G.I. Joe action figures, vehicles and play sets produced between 2007 to today. Let the Rank & File Guidebooks serve as a reference for completion or a scrapbook to the next big turning point of G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero.

This Kickstarter not only allows you to be the first to have reprints of Rank & File volumes 2 and 3 in hand, it also provides a chance to obtain some rare and fun items, primarily some of the very action figures cataloged in these guidebooks.  This particular Kickstarter even has a fans choice contest to potentially release the alternate cover I chose not to use for volume 2’s original run.  You decide! The demand has been heard and the time is nigh, let’s bring back Rank & File volumes 2 and 3 for another round!

Below is the link to the Kickstarter:

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/163945173/rank-and-file-volume-2-and-3-reprints-gi-joe-resou/comments

Thanks a ton!!

One final note, the supply of Rank & File volume 3 is available but dwindling.  Order your copy at www.rahcguide.com or chose it from one of the great Kickstarter options in the link above!  This Kickstarter’s immediate goal is to replenish stock for the 2018 International G.I. Joe Convention.  These guides will only be available if this Kickstarter is successful.

Sincerely,

James M. Kavanaugh Jr.

Owner/Author of R.A.H.C. Guidebooks

Thanks for your support!

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GeneralsJoes Reviews Complex Base Building System by Raginspoon

PRE-ORDER THIS NOW AT SMALLJOES.COM

First and foremost – this review was done with some early painted prototypes and the final product may vary slightly.  That being said, these items are very close to production status… and a ton of fun to boot!

Ever since I first started making dio-stories like 16 years ago (good grief how old am I?) I’ve been dying for a modular diorama/base system to use with my G.I. Joe figures.  Some things have come and gone over the years, and recently I’ve been drawn to the Chain Base model, but those can be complicated and usually have to be imported from Japan.

But now, Raginspoon toys is ramping up to start offering their own customizable base model, including swappable floor panels and wall panels with a ton of expandability and some great features for 1:18 action figure fanatics.

NOTE – The color of “Desert Tan” will be much more tan and much less yellow in the final version!  The below color is a closer match:

 

Above is a Complex “Wall Panel” which comes in two separate colors, “Urban Gray” or “Desert Tan”, and as you can see above you can remove the two panels (or just one) to create a door or window.  When you do remove just one of the panels to create a window, there is a hole in the lower panel that works with some of the connectors from one of your favorite 1:18 military toy lines…

As you can also see, the smaller holes here (and throughout the rest of the base parts) can accommodate backpacks (or other similarly sized peg items) from the same or similar toy lines.

Along with these wall panels are different types of floor panels, also available in “Urban Gray” or “Desert Tan”.

These floor panels can also double as additional wall panels if you need to expand your base.  The floor panels (like the walls) reversible to show a metal grate pattern or a more concrete pattern on the opposite side.  Then, in order to combine the floor panels with the wall panels, connectors are available as well.

The gray connectors seen above slide into grooves within the walls and floors in order to assemble the bases into any number of different configurations.  As you can see above, the connectors can have one tab, two tabs, three tabs, or a fully decked out four tab system in order to provide flexibility and aesthetics when connecting the pieces together.

The last two images above are a “Desert Tan” end connector with a step.  The end connector is designed to go underneath one of the wall panels with the step plugging into it to create a “step up” look for a door.

Note: The end connector and step will be colored in the same “Urban Gray” as the other parts in the final version, NOT the yellowish/tan.

So, the real question – how does this all work?

Really, REALLY well.  I was fortunate enough to get some of these ahead of release so I could play around with them, and I am having a blast.  The walls and floors slide together via the gray connectors really smoothly and are easy to take apart and put together, yet also hold together amazingly well.  You can design single level bases, or lift the walls up higher by stacking, which makes these things exceptionally flexible.  The various holes throughout the bases provide any number of points for adding tech detail or other things, and with a little creativity you can totally ramp up the usability of all of these pieces.

These items are NOT cast items, they are factory produced overseas and currently available for pre-order at SmallJoes.com.  The material is solid and durable for the walls, floors, and all connecting pieces as well.  Trust me when I say I beat on these pretty hard while taking pictures for the review and suffered no breakages or even weakness in any of the connecting joints at all.  They work remarkably well and are only hindered by your imagination.

As I mentioned, the floors are double-sided and can be used as either floor pieces or wall pieces.  The walls themselves are also double-sided and provide some cool additional detail on the external facing side, so not only do these make for great interior dio’s, but there’s some good flexibility for outside appearance as well.

In my nearly two decades of looking for unique ways to put together dioramas and dio-stories, this has been one of the most user-friendly and flexible ways to put together excellent next generation bases for your favorite action figures, big or small.  The folks at Raginspoon also have some BIG things in the works for a second wave and going forward, which will take these sets and ramp them up big time.  If these move there are even more fantastic items in the works for the future, so get them while you can over at SmallJoes.com!

Also, make sure you are following the Raginspoon Facebook Page and Instagram for the latest information on these sets and potential future sets to come.

Boss Fight Studio Vitruvian Basics Archer of Molpadia

Figure Available at BossFightShop.com!

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For the first time ever, Boss Fight Studio is mixing series within a single assortment, giving us fantasy figures and Greek mythology figures both in wave 1 of the Basics line.  I’m really glad they did.

Alongside the Castle Guard and Nocturnal Hunter, they released the Archer of Molpadia, an Amazonian archer to further compliment your already impressive Amazon armies.  To be honest, my love for the Amazon figures in the HACKS Series 01 line was completely unexpected, but that whole range of characters and figures are among my favorites in the entire line.  From the unique armor to the leather combat skirts, the various weapons, and the character sculpted into each one, I really enjoy the Amazon figures and I’m truly excited to see an addition to their ranks.

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With the Archer of Molpadia, they’ve added some long range weaponry capacity to an already excellent group of warriors and made a really terrific figure to go along with it.  This archer uses the same female build as other figures, but with the head of the Tartarus Guard painted in Caucasian flesh tone with nicely hued blonde hair.  Instead of the standard Amazon armor, she wears Medusa’s torso, shoulder, and arm bracers, which is an awesome, unique look.

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To trim down on costs, she doesn’t have a ton of accessories, but the ones she has make perfect sense and work exceptionally well for the character.  Her paint scheme is also minimal, with simple gold on the armor and weapons, and a red/brown leather for the skirt, which compliment each other to perfection.

All told, the Archer of Molpadia is a fantastic addition, even moreso when you consider the Basics format pricing and packaging.

Accessories

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As mentioned the Archer of Molpadia comes with Medusa’s armor, an Amazon skirt, leg armor, a bow and four arrows.  The bow that originally came with the Elven Archer works exceptionally well here, and the way the four arrows slide seamlessly into the hook on the back of the skirt is a stroke of genius.

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A great, great figure, even if it wasn’t priced 20% less than the standard release options.  I love the Archer of Molpadia and really look forward to more great Vitruvian Basics figures along the way.

Figure available at BossFightShop.com!

Boss Fight Studio Vitruvian Basics Castle Guard

Figure Available at BossFightShop.com!

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Quickly becoming one of my favorite 4″ action figures ever, Boss Fight Studios Knight of Accord has a lot to love in a small scale.  While the beauty of the figure includes all of the separate accessories it comes with, the base figure itself also has a lot to love with the terrific armored torso and cloth covered limbs.

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When Boss Fight announced they’d be dipping their toes into lower priced Vitruvian BASICS figures with the idea of creating figures that are a bit more appealing from a price perspective, I wasn’t sure I’d be into them.  I mean, the paint deco and accessory compliments are part of what makes their figures great.  I should have known, they’re still able to make a figure that is impressive on several levels, even at a price point 20% cheaper than standard.

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The Accord Castle Guard uses the same torso, head, legs, hands, and lower arms as the standard Knight, but with new unarmored upper arms.  He also comes with less accessories, only including a cloth and armored belts, gauntlets, sword, spear and helmet.  Honestly, though even with a somewhat smaller selection of weapons, the figure is amazingly enjoyable and fits in almost seamlessly to the existing Accord roster.  Forgoing many of the elaborate paint applications, the Castle Guard simply is silver and black with some blue for the cloth.  It’s a gorgeous, clean look and even without all the trimming and trappings, he remains a fantastic figure.  Boss Fight used the Orc lower torso as well, which provides a somewhat lower tech look, making the Castle Guard really resemble a Knight that’s not so heavily “geared” up as the others.

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It truly is a great effect, and I don’t feel like I’m missing out on a whole lot, even though we’re paying 20% less for the figure overall. For some folks they may consider the additional gear worth the 20%, but even looking beyond the Castle Guard being a replacement of the knight, it just makes for a fantastic enhancement to it, and I find myself really enjoying the figure, not because it’s cheaper, but just because it’s a great figure.

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These Basics come with simpler blister cards instead of the typical collector friendly packaging, but are also able to include a nice bio on the back regardless.  All in all, I truly enjoy these Castle Guard figures, with vibrant color schemes, and interesting accessories to perfectly compliment the existing crew of Knights of the Accord.

Accessories

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I really love what Boss Fight did here, giving the Castle Guard just enough accessories to fit in with the knights, without going overboard (and incurring rising costs).  Including the helmet, sword, and spear from Series 01 was a stroke of genius as well, accenting the already impressive arsenal of Series 02 weapons without new tooling or sculpting.  Very nice.

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The Castle Guard is a lot of fun, even for a so called “budget” friendly figure.  I can see him not only being perfect for troop building and customizing, but also just as natural enhancements to the standard knights.  Regardless of the price point, the figure is really great.

Figure available at BossFightShop.com!