|Character Design||Shinji Aramaki|
Review by JoshB
Yamato brings us this newly redesigned Proto Garland from Megazone 23 part 2.
By now we all know about the QC issues with the first Yamato Garland. The bad shoulder joints would disintegrate the first time you touched them. Yamato has of course made amends by both replacing damaged shoulders and fixing the shoulders for future releases. Still, the memory of those first Garlands stings a bit whenever you think of that toy.
Yamato has erased that memory with this toy. This toy is amazing, and may be my favorite Yamato toy yet.
The Proto Garland comes from Megazone 23 part 2, the bastard offspring of the classic Megazone 23. The animation style shifts gears radically in this OVA, and so does the design of the Garland.
The Proto Garland is more industrial than the regular one. It has sharper lines, darker colors, and exposed bronze mechanics. The general size is the same but very few similar parts remain between the two. Essentially, it’s a whole new toy.
In bike mode the Proto Garland features rubber free-wheeling tires and is very sturdy thanks to the added clip on the bottom. This clip secures the front forks to the body making a very solid unit.
The cockpit features a pop-up screen and folding mirrors. Unfortunately, you have to get up underneath the cockpit and pop them out to get access to them.
Included is a newely redesigned Shogo figure, but still it is stuck in its riding pose. It has tons of articulation, but you still can't stand it up.
The top coverings on either side of the rear open up to reveal the golden bronze inner mechanics of the Proto Garland. The large vent is moveable, and all the hoses are rubber. At the rear, the exhaust vents have moveable flaps.
Transformation is nearly identical to the previous garlands, with only a small difference in the way the seat folds into the body. The included figure can ride on it in bike mode or can be stored inside the unit for transformation.
Once in robot mode there is no sign of the bad shoulders anywhere. This thing is great on so many levels. They used an interesting plastic in the joint work that I can’t describe. It does not at all seem fragile. The arms have the usual points of articulation, and the hands are also fully articulated. Each hand has a peg in the palm to hold a gun.
The hips still peg into the wheel like it used to, probably the only weak point remaining in the design. The pegs can pop out when handling – Yamato should have made the fit just a bit tighter.
The legs are articulated like crazy. Make sure you pull the knee and ankle all the way out to get the full range of motion. The ankles are really phenomenal, and are connected to the inner mechanism via solid rubber tubes.
It’s here on the legs that the back panels on the legs really look great. Putting the Proto Garland into a dynamic pose and then opening those panels just a bit really make this thing look killer.
You even get more accessories with this Garland than with the previous ones. This one gives you a shield that clips onto the arm, and not one but two rifles. Each rifle features a removable clip, and the larger rifle features an interchangeable barrel.
I really love this toy. Yamato did a bang-up job on this one, and lets hope this sets the standard for future releases for them. It’s just awesome.
You can get your very own Proto Garland at Yamato USA’s online shop at http://www.yamatotoysusa.com/page.cfm/437
|Posted 19 March, 2008 - 21:22 by JoshB|