We have well established figure producers like GSC, Max Factory, Kotobukiya, Wave, Freeing and Megahouse that always churn out quality products. Then we have Alter. I don’t think many would disagree with me when I say that Alter is definitely one of the best, or if not the best, figure maker at this point in time. What can I say? Alter’s figures are definitely a league above all other brands. Their figures are consistently excellent, utilizing one of the best feeling materials, having quality paint jobs, gorgeous poses and intricate sculpts. This usually yields a figure that any collector would be proud to own and proud to have displayed on his shelf.
Now, why am I singing such high praise of Alter from the get go? Well, that’s because it’s true.
…and also because I’ve been completely smitten by their latest offering in their Mahou Shoujo Lyrical Nanoha figure line, their 1/7 Scale Fate Testarossa figure.
This figure of Fate is more than just the next installment in Alter’s Nanoha line, it’s also their second go at a Loli Fate. Alter’s first attempt at a Loli Fate was their 1/8 Scale Fate Testarossa based on her appearance in the A’s series. That figure was released in December of 2006, almost 5 years ago! At that point in time, that 1/8 Scale Fate figure was the definitive Fate figure that any fan of her needed to own as it was head and shoulders above all the other offerings from the various other companies such as Movic and GSC, what with the aforementioned excellent build quality, sculpting, paint job, details, pose and accuracy.
I am happy to say that this Fate just blows the previous one out of the water.
The colors, the proportions, the pose… this figure has every single thing going for it. To elaborate and reiterate, her colors are vibrant, the proportions spot-on, the pose, stellar.
Never have I come across a more photogenic figure in my years of collecting. Honestly, unlike some figures where you have to struggle to get just the right angle to get a passable picture, it was practically effortless getting her to look good from nearly any position. I honestly really enjoyed taking pictures of this figure.
In terms of sculpting, the figure conveys a sense of movement. One of the more challenging aspects to figure sculpting is trying to get a static figure to give the illusion of movement. Good Smile Company is another company that is able to capture this as well, as evident from the folds and such seen in the clothes of the Figma figures.
For Fate, she’s practically alive. I mean, it’s practically mind-boggling how they were able to sculpt her cape and hair. Honestly, I can’t imagine how many hours the sculptor labored over this figure. Hats off to Tsumezuka Hiroyuki.
If that wasn’t enough, we come to the SECOND aspect about the figure which just blows my mind. The options and accessories. Aside from the figure, we have included:
– Exchangeable Right Arm
– Exchangeable Left Hand
– Bardiche Axe/Device Form
– Bardiche Scythe Form
– Bardiche Glaive Form (+ 3 energy fins and exchangable connector piece)
Oh, and the shafts of all three Bardiches? Metal. You heard me. Metal. There’s nothing more that needs to be said save for the fact that I ADORE how Alter gave each Bardiche head its own shaft. No more head swapping required! (^o^)
So already, with just these accessories alone, you are given the option to this figure displayed in 8 different ways!
Now, the stand. The stand is an integral and important, but often overlooked part of the figure. The figure comes with the following:
Main Base for Fate
Metal Rods X 2
Mini Stand for Bardiche(s)
Metal Rod X 1
Holder Pieces X 3
I really like the base. I don’t think I’ve ever mentioned this before, but for characters that have Magic Circles associated with them, I always want their bases to have the Magic Circle incorporated into them. That’s one of the reasons I like Movic’s Loli Fate so much. Of course, Alter’s Fate scores another point in my favor as her entire base is just the Midchilda Magic Circle in Gold. Seriously, there is no better color scheme than black and gold. It just gives off such a prestigious and regal vibe that is created by the juxtaposition of the dark black and shiny gold.
Above, you can see the two bases being compared side by side. Do also note the upgraded design of the Midchilda Magic Circle for the movie.
This is again something that I’m enamored with. Alter gave Bardiche its own stand to be displayed alongside Fate. Being able to display the extra Bardiches along side Fate not only makes swapping Bardiches a breeze, it also completely negates the necessity for you to find someplace to store them.
Not to mention, having them displayed beside her makes it look like a mini armory or gallery which just adds to the awesomeness factor.
After all the praise that I’ve bombarded the figure with, is there even a single flaw or fault that I can find? Well yes, yes there are a couple.
Firstly, it’s its fragility. Due to the nature of the source material and sculpting, some pieces are really, really, really thin. Case in point, Bardiche Scythe Form’s energy blade. Because the blade is made of transparent solid plastic, it feels exceedingly brittle. So do be exceedingly cautious when handling that.
The only other flaw that I can even conceive of, is not really a flaw, but more of a nit-pick. Looking at the effects base of Alter’s 2006 Fate, I really wished that something similar could have been done with the newer Fate’s base. For one, it hides the kinda out of place metal rods and I personally am a fan of flashy bases as well. Then, there is also the argument that such bases tend to take away from the figure themselves… so yeah, on that aspect, you be the judge.
Last but not least, the only thing left that I want to mention is the price. At 10,000 over yen, some might be daunted. Especially in this economy, I can understand if even die-hard fans falter at clicking the ‘Add to Cart’ button. But rest assured that if you do decide to pick her up, you are getting your money’s worth as the box is just jam packed with stuff.
Phenomenal figure. Pick her up ASAP.
*In some pictures, Fate is holding Bardiche in Zamber Form. It’s from Alter’s 2006 Fate and is not included with the figure.