Picked 29 of these up for a mere 2500yen (plus commission, plus shipping, plus... nevermind), but the astute observer will notice that there are only 23 here. 6 were doubles, so I'm going to try to sell them on ebay.
Around 2000-2001, Medicom started making "designer Lego figures" that were usually anime or something else J-themed, called Kubricks. These extremely popular figures usually came 3 to a box with accessories & stands. Some of these were sold in blind boxes as trading figures, with some like the Metal Gear Solid series having "chase figures" (like KidRobot) being in an extremely small ratio, sometimes being even as few as 1 per case. Some also were exclusive to certain stores, or were included with product sets & garnered a crazy price in shops or at auction.
There were many imitators that sought to cash in on this, and Takara was not immune. They super-deformed their already aptly-named Microman franchise from the 70s/80s that they brought back around 1999 & made blind box sets of figures from 2002 onward. There were 2 sets containing Microman, Acroyear & Henshin Cyborg, before Takara moved onto their other lucrative franchise - Transformers.
I think these are my favorites of my most recent acquisitions. I knew ahead of time that they were Sega arcade prizes, so I wasn't quite expecting the level of quality that they ended up being. I already have a set of Okama-designed Eva figures that are Matsuri/Festival edition, that are really nice, but these are of an almost "1/8 scale PVC" quality, and they really didn't cost that much, either. US$17.90 a piece at Play-Asia and still in stock as of this post! Each of the two girls have a specific fruit theme - Rei, lemon & Asuka, strawberry - and have translucent clothes over stripes, as well as a fruit-themed umbrella. Again, I don't know how or why $90 figures wind up having "mass production blemishes" on them & these supposedly "cheap" arcade prizes have seemingly higher quality sometimes, but I don't see a single blemish or problem on either one. And with 2 different materials on each figure, that's downright amazing. I really like Okama's art style, and when combined with Rei & Asuka, well, let's just say, I won't ever be getting rid of any of the four figures I have that are designed by Okama anytime soon...
More of these Keroro Chara Fortune straps/keychains. I was hoping for a Dororo & I got one, as well as one of each of the other 5 main Keronjin to round out my collection. Super happy about this. ^^ I even got the Ocha version of Dororo!
Voting with your dollars can sometimes be a bad thing. When I opted to buy the $100 Collector's Edition of Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood from Gamestop, I knew I was voting for the floodgates to open to charge even more than the $80 precedent that was set by some of the more recent/notable Collector's Edition releases. But I also thought that the included jack-in-the-box was an amazing pack-in. Of course it also comes with the ubiquitous making of/promo DVD & hardback mini artbook as well as a map, but let's be honest, I don't think anyone would have even paid the going-rate of $80 for a set without the jack, here.
Honestly, I don't mind paying $100 for a release with something as cool as this (though I've been spoiled by high-quality Japanese toys, because I noticed a few places where this one had a blemish or cut corner, but overall it's awesome) included, I just hope it starts a trend of one-upsmanship where other big releases see the same - or better - "toys" included. Not that this started this trend per se - we had some crazy stuff with Halo & a few other games this year - but it's certainly one of the first that had something other than a plastic statue or helmet replica. (though I do recall some game coming with an RC replica of an in-game vehicle earlier this year)
As for the jack himself, the "normal" Collector's Edition (lol, I know, right?) sold by every retailer but Gamestop contained The Doctor, in a medical mask with a syringe. The Gamestop edition I got came with a jack that is actually a jack, or a Harlequin in the game. He pops out with 2 daggers in hand & looks more like the real creepy-looking Fisher-Price jack that everyone had as a kid. It even has the same plastic head & spring-covered-in-fabric body that, that jack had.
The art book is a typical mini-hardcover type, filled with concept art & the like. Some of the production art is very impressive, it reminds me of looking at art for the 8 or 16-bit games of yesteryear - in that, the game could never possibly be as good as the art convinces your imagination it'll be. Maybe someday a computer will beat the human imagination, but some of this art makes your mind really get lost in the settings or whatever. Ubisoft has some talented people working for em.
Got the whole set of these figures from the DS game of the same name. The princess has her hair pulled back, so she looks oddly butch when photographed straight on. The rogue, samurai & fighter (the rightmost three) are my faves. ^^ This is part of the Takara Tomy A.R.T.S. line of Gashapon, so they're of a better quality than normal Gacha, and each comes with its own stand as well as a pin to hold them in position.
'Narikiri' means "to turn into completely", so it's fitting that Kitty is in costume in this series. This set included King Ghidorah, Godzilla, Kamen Rider & more, but alas, I was only able to procure a Rider Kitty. But that's okay, I got the best one of the set (in my opinion, anyway, with Godzilla Kitty coming in a close second).
Got my mitts on a set of 3 (of 4, but I just won the 4th on YHJA) Rockman.EXE Mini Gashapon machines by Yujin. These are from 2004, but somehow Mugen Toys still had em in stock. I got Blues, Bass & Searchman, and the cool thing is that the Bass & Searchman versions light up when you turn the little crank on the front! They have multicolored LEDs that flash alternating colors when activated. I won the remaining one I need, the blue Rockman version, and that is also a light-up version. These ironically came in Gashapon capsules, and you had a chance of getting either a light-up or non light-up version at random when you plunked your 200 yen into the slot on the real machine. Each machine comes with a set of tiny capsules to put in the machine and even tinier toys to stick in the capsules, that are molded in the shape of the enemies in the Rockman.EXE games. Ah, I love Japan so, so much. ^^
Got these because I love the snacks, but also the bag is awesome and will look good on my wall. Bakkun, the mascot, has Frankenstein-like stitches & a bolt on his face on the front, presumably because these are the "Demon World Cheese" flavored special edition for Halloween. I remember whenever I went to Japan the first time in 1996 & barely anyone even knew what Halloween was, and now it's celebrated every year there even by smallish communities. (If Twitter is to be believed =P) I wasn't necessarily put off by this, because I'm sure the taste will be awesome, but the snacks themselves kinda look like anuses, lololol.