Today I got my first chance to take a serious look at one of the Sideshow Collectibles / Hot Toys and the one I got, the 2014 Toy Fair Exclusive Ancient Predator Sixth Scale Figure. This is from their Movie Masterpiece Series and their Alien Vs Predator Collection. That's a lot of titles for an action figure, enough to make your head spin. But it's my job to write a review of it, so I'm going to start off with my initial reactions.
Since this was shipped to me, the packaging became important. How safe was my figure going to be as it was bounced around on a shipping truck? Turns out, very safe. The initial packaging is sturdy to start with, then it's packed inside a thick cardboard box which is then packed inside another thick cardboard box. Short of it being run over by an eighteen-wheeler, the odds are your happy little Predator will arrive safe and sound.
The graphics on the packaging are very cool. Nice images plus you get a good roll call of the people who worked on the figure. You have to appreciate the amount of hard work that goes into these creations and I think having the credits printed largely on the box is very appropriate.
The first thing I saw when I pulled it all out was a sticker on the plastic that said "Make sure you read the instructions first" which was very helpful as I had not seen an instructions but located them after taking the base out of the packaging. Without the instructions I would never have understood how the mandibles worked and would have gotten nowhere.
Now to the figure itself. As I said above, I haven't gotten one of these before so I was a bit surprised when I pulled out the figure and found a double layer of plastic trays. So many accessories that you could buy a half dozen of these and not duplicate weapons combination. You start with having two sets of mandibles, a normal set and then an extended set. Then you also have two different helmets that lock in where the mandibles were. And while we are talking about the head, the rubber-ish material that they used for the tentacles/dreadlocks looks amazing and feels weird.
Once I changed out the mandibles for a helmet and connected the LED wire to the tiny hole in the back, I was able to move on to changing out the hands and weapons. You have long wrist blades that go under each gauntlet. These are made of a sturdy metal that can be a bit sharp, so no poking out eyes or anything. The right arm also has a set of twin blades that you can replace with two different larger sizes. These are also made of the sturdy and quite shiny metal. I also traded out the hands. Both hands have two additional options so you have a closed fist, a holding hand and an open almost "jazz" hand.
Additionally in the package there is the shoulder laser which I attached. A sword and sheath that attaches to the right leg. A lovely necklace of bone trophies. A throwing disc of knifes for lack of a better term, though I'm sure AVP fans will be able to correct me on it. And the topper of them all, an extendable spear with an Aliens head skewered to it.
The one negative here is the stand. It looks very nice, has a half stepped on Alien head lying on the ground and esthetically fits with the figure. But it's too small. The only real pose you can do with it is either the Predator stepping on the Alien head or have one foot off the base. The other thing is how the figure secures to the base. It has one of those two-prong wire hook things that doesn't quite make sense where to put on the figure. It's too short to go under the arms. And there is no mention of the base in the instructions.
The base aside, the figure is gorgeous… or as gorgeous as a Predator can be. The joints move well, the pieces that you can interchange are well crafted and exchange easily. The craftsmanship here is top notch. The metal blades look (and feel) sharp and should definitely last. The number of variations you can do allows you to change up the figure on a regular basis and really looks good on a shelf. I am extremely impressed by the figure and I now fully understand the popularity of this line. This is the type of toy you wish you had as a kid, but you can only fully appreciate as an adult.
To get the 2014 Toy Fair Exclusive Ancient Predator Sixth Scale Figure, click here.