Tag Archives: toys

Tiny PlayStation Toy Even Has The Internal Circuitry

Next year, Bandai will be releasing some 2:5 scale models of famous old consoles. They’re nice enough to be sitting on a shelf as is, but what’s really cool about these is that they replicate the machines both outside and in.

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The models—and their controllers—pop open to reveal intricate little reproductions of the circuit boards and other internal components.

There’ll be a PlayStation and a Saturn, and both will be released in March 2020.

Source: Kotaku.com

Start Off Your Day With A Bowl Of Legend Of Zelda Lego Cereal

Lego artist Baron Von Brunk, builder of transforming Game Boys and massive working NES controllers, is pioneering a new method of stop-motion animation featuring a mix of custom-built Lego puppets and live-action shots. This new project begins, appropriately enough, with a complete The Legend of Zelda breakfast.

Instead of using the iconic Lego minifigure, as many brickbuilt stop-motion animation projects do, the good Baron has created his own assortment of stylized puppets. With mouths that open and close and expressive eyebrows, they add character and depth to Lego people.

They look a little creepy, sure. And when you think about it, the Kakariko’s cereal, which are named after a village that’s appeared in several Legend of Zelda games, is made out of the same material as Link and crew. He’s sort of… eating himself.

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Still, an interesting mix of live-action, stop-motion, and special effects. Read up about the project at Baron Von Brunk’s webpage, and check out his Flickr for behind-the-scenes shots of the models and backgrounds.

Source: Kotaku.com

This Fallout Vault Boy Figure Is A Whole Mood

Good Smile Company’s newly announced Nendoroid Vault Boy action figure includes four different faces and several arm and leg pieces for Fallout’s famous mascot. Seems like a waste to me. They had me at angry middle finger.

Just look at that face. The brow. The frown. The entire posture just screams sass.

I am not even that big of a Fallout player, but I must have him. I shall stand him facing Optimus Prime on my work desk, his diminutive form defying the leader of the Autobots in perpetuity.

As I mentioned earlier, there are three other faces available, in case annoyed defiance isn’t your bag. There’s also car salesman, vacant happiness, and my second-favorite, chewing on a leg. Or arm.

The new Vault Boy Nendoroid is available for preorder now through October 10 on Good Smile’s website for around $50, with a planned release in March of next year. After that, you’ll probably be able to find him in that weird video game collectible section of Target.

In closing, wheeeeeeee.

Source: Kotaku.com

There Are Now 100 Hidden Action Figures To Find And Collect In GTA Online

The world of Grand Theft Auto Online is filled with crime, action, and destruction. Often players are given jobs that involve robbing banks, assassinating enemies, stealing cars or blowing up drug dens. But in the latest GTA Online update, players have a decidedly more mundane task: Collect 100 action figures for a toy collector.

To start this quest, simply log into the GTA Online and wait for a text from a man who owns a local comic book store. Someone stole all his action figures and he needs you to collect them and bring them all back. If you are wondering how a comic store owner got hold of the phone number of a huge criminal, he’s a friend of Lester, who provides jobs for players. Los Santos really is a small world after all.

While the toys were just added earlier this week, dedicated players have already found all 100 figures and discovered what rewards you earn for spending a few hours searching the map.

For each figure you find, you’ll earn $1000 and 1000 RP points. After you find all of them, you will earn another $50k and a new outfit.

The new outfit is based on the in-universe superhero, Impotent Rage. The new outfit also comes with a new hair cut. Wearing both of these new cosmetics lets players pull off a solid Impotent Rage cosplay. Now, does anyone actually want to play GTA Online while looking like Impotent Rage? Maybe a few? Some fans are having fun with the new outfit.

Personally, I would have been happier with more money or suit made out of the 100 action figures.

If you want to go searching for action figures in GTA Online, you can use various maps and videos that players have put together showing where to find each collectible and the most efficient order to collect them in. Get your car or helicopter or jetpack ready and go collect some toys.

Source: Kotaku.com

18 Years Later, We’ve Got The Perfect Halo Action Figure

There have been a lot of Halo figures over the years, but this new one by 1000toys is easily my favourite. Based on Master Chief’s original Halo 1 design, but also tweaked by Japanese mech designer Izmojuki, it’s 1/12 scale and costs….USD$125.

That’s a lot for a figure, but then, it’s a very nice figure. Aside from Chief himself, it also includes a bunch of accessories, like five different sets of hands, an energy sword, two pistols and an assault rifle.

I just love how matte he is, how perfectly-formed all the joints are, how posable he is without sacrificing his looks. He’s also just the first in a whole line 1000toys are releasing based on Halo, so hopefully there’s some guys and gals from Reach coming up soon as well.

No word on a release date, but the “2020″ in the copyright on the images below is a very good clue.

Source: Kotaku.com

I Miss Simple Video Games That Didn’t Try Too Hard

Photo: Andrew Liszewski (Gizmodo)

As someone obsessed with handheld gaming consoles, Nintendo’s Switch should have been the ultimate portable system for me. Instead, it actually made me nostalgic for Tiger Electronics’ LCD handhelds; arguably some of the first true portable video game systems. They were cheap, durable, simple, and addictive, and 30 years later I find myself missing that experience.

I don’t have a lot of free time to devout to playing and finishing games these days. I’ll occasionally have a few minutes of boredom I’m looking to kill, but I don’t think I could even load Breath of the Wild in that amount of time. That’s where the cheap LCD games of the late ‘80s and ‘90s excelled. They were bite-size snippets of action with a goal that was rarely more involved than registering a new high score. They required no serious commitment and there were no tutorials to slog through. You could easily hop in into a game in a couple of seconds, enjoy a few minutes of satisfying button mashing, and then quickly stash them away until you needed to feed your gaming addiction again—minus the side effects of losing hours of your life or blowing your budget.

Founded by Arnold, Gerald, and Randy Rissman in 1978, Tiger Electronics got its start making simple electronics like phonographs, but transitioned to interactive toys and LCD-based gaming devices in the early ‘80s. For a while the company’s most notable product was a series of portable game devices based on Universal’s 1976 King Kong remake featuring a knock-off version of Nintendo’s Donkey Kong. It led to a legal dustup between Universal and Nintendo over who owned the rights to giant apes, which Nintendo eventually won, but ultimately decided not to take down Tiger Electronics in the process.

A few years after the Kong controversy blew over, Tiger Electronics settled on a design for a series of electronic handheld games that the company would eventually sell millions of in the late ‘80s and ‘90s. The first games in Tiger’s new lineup, released in 1987, were sports titles like football, skeet shooting, and baseball, which also happened to be the first Tiger handheld I ever owned.

Before Tiger’s new line, portable gaming systems always came with a premium price tag. I can remember drooling over mini tabletop arcades in catalogs, but never actually putting them on my Christmas or birthday wish lists for fear of maxing out what my parents were willing to spend. Even Nintendo’s Game & Watch handhelds were on the pricy side, but in 1987 Tiger Electronics changed that. Its new handhelds featured a gratuitous use of plastic—from the housings, to the buttons, to even the display covers—and simple segmented LCD screens, barely a couple of inches in size, that could only display a limited and crude collection of graphics and animations. If there was such a thing as disposable video games, Tiger’s handhelds came close to being that.

Gameplay is almost an eyesore now, but I can’t even begin to count the number of hours I’ve stared at that tiny screen.
GIF: Andrew Liszewski (Gizmodo)

Gameplay was equally basic. Tiger’s Electronic Baseball played more like an enhanced home run derby where the player’s team never actually takes the field. Just two buttons were used to swing at every pitch and then strategically advance your players from base to base—with “strategically” being used very generously here.

But the 10-year-old version of me didn’t care, he absolutely loved this game, bringing it on long road trips and even smuggling it into Sunday school every week. I also didn’t care that Bases Loaded on the NES was a vastly superior experience; Tiger’s version could come with me anywhere, I didn’t have to take turns playing with my siblings, and I didn’t have to wait until my parents were done watching something on TV. Playing it today I rarely get past a couple of innings before losing interest, but the simplicity is exactly why I still keep games like these in easy reach, and keep coming back. They scratch an itch without destroying my productivity.

All the corner cutting also meant that Tiger Electronic’s handhelds were usually around $20 each, easily accommodating the budgets of most 10-year-olds reliant on allowances or birthday money for income. The plastic still feels cheap and my baseball game is covered in scratches and scars from being endlessly dropped and rage-thrown, but it’s one of my few childhood electronic toys that still works fine 30 years later. Tiger had found the perfect balance between price, durability, and addictiveness to hook a generation.

It also helped that the company was almost obsessive about licensing popular properties like movies, video games, and even TV shows. Unlike a console game these handhelds didn’t require months of complicated development. Tiger could churn these games out quickly, and it did just that. Mortal Kombat, Jurassic Park, Star Wars, GI Joe, Captain Planet, Full House, The Little Mermaid—if something was pop culturally relevant in the ‘90s, there’s a good chance there was a Tiger Electronics handheld game made for it.

So why isn’t Tiger Electronics a dominant name in gaming today? The brand is definitely still around, now owned by Hasbro, but the clock started ticking on the company’s cheap and simple approach to handheld gaming on April 21, 1989, when Nintendo’s Game Boy was released. It was more expensive than Tiger’s handhelds, but every game offered unique gameplay, graphics, and sound, and game carts could often be found competitively priced. Tiger eventually released its own cartridge based system in 1997, the Game.com, that included online connectivity and a touchscreen, but the Game Boy Color arrived soon after, and Tiger Electronics simply wasn’t big enough to take on Nintendo any more.

I’m not going to pretend like I still turn to Electronic Baseball for all my gaming needs, the Switch is definitely my goto console now. But despite being portable, I’m hesitant to travel with it for fear of damaging or losing $300 worth of gear. It also doesn’t really provide instant gratification, and more often than not as an adult that’s what I’m looking for. Smartphone games come close to filling that need, but sometimes I just want to mindlessly mash buttons for a couple of minutes, hitting home runs or beating up baddies, without having to worry about killing my phone’s battery, waiting for app updates, or all the other distractions of modern gaming. Tiger Electronics game me exactly that 30 years ago.

Source: Kotaku.com

Apex Legends Gets Some Very Nice Toys

Weta, who in addition to being a special effects house are also a merch company, have a bunch of Apex Legends stuff coming out, ranging from little vinyl figures to more expensive statues.

Statues first: they’ll be out in December, stand around 9 inches tall and cost $100. They’re called figures, but since they’re set in elaborate poses and are 100% immovable, I’m calling them statues. If you’re wondering how they look so close to the in-game characters, it’s because each statue was rendered from Respawn’s actual 3D models.

Next up are the smaller vinyl figures, which cost $30 and will be out in November. These are more stylised, in the same way many of Weta’s other figures are, and that’s fine, because like their Lord of the Rings figures it’s very tastefully done.

Source: Kotaku.com

I Wish I Could Wear This Wee Arkham Asylum Batman Cowl

When I heard that DC Collectibles was making a replica of the distinctive cowl the Dark Knight wore during Rocksteady’s Arkham Asylum video game, I imagined skulking about my house as a masked vigilante, striking fear into children and cats alike. The final product is lovely, but not the wearable cowl I’d imagined.

The Batman: Arkham Asylum replica cowl, which goes on sale this month for $90 with a limited run of 5,000 pieces, is the latest in a series that also includes the bulky batmask of The Dark Knight Returns, the metal Knightfall cowl with the red eyes, the short-horned blue number Bruce Wayne wore in DC Comics’ 2016 Rebirth reboot, and the creepy Batman Who Laughs mask from Dark Nights: Metal.

The Arkham version is distinctive for its beaklike nose and long, pointed horns. Sculpted by Dave Cortes and Amos Hemsley, it captures the video game costume’s look perfectly.

Yes, I said “sculpted.” Far from the wearable mask I first imagined, this piece is a sculpted bust, of sorts. Busts normally capture the entire likeness of a character. This one leaves a hole where Bruce’s human face would be.

Standing 11.29 inches high from base to pointed ears, the Arkham Asylum cowl is not large enough to fit on my face. It would be perfect for my cat, but it is a resin sculpture that’s only partially hollow.

Mind the cat, she’s naturally blurry.

It does look very nice on my desk, and the ears are rigid enough to be used as a self-defense weapon in case of home invasion. Batman would approve.

Source: Kotaku.com

Moving Sucks, But Especially If You’re a Geek

Moving Legos is hard. Moving Legos in large plastic containers? Not as hard.
Photo: All Images (Germain Lussier)
Toys and CollectiblesAction figures, statues, exclusives, and other merchandise. Beware: if you look here, you’re probably going to spend some money afterwards.  

If you thought moving was hard, try to do it with a 7,000 piece Lego set.

Recently, I moved out of a Los Angeles apartment I’d been in for six years to a house in the San Fernando Valley. It’s a big deal, of course, and something my wife Jayne and I had been planning and saving toward for a while. And yet, as exciting and grown up as the whole prospect was, when we began the actual, serious business of house hunting I almost didn’t want to do it. I didn’t want to do it because it meant I’d have to move…a lot of stuff.

It’s not a revelation to talk about how much moving sucks. Because it does. Moving. Fucking. Sucks. But on top of that general dread was the fact that I’m a bit of an obsessive collector. Posters, Lego, various toys and prop replicas, DVDs, books, you name it and I probably collect it. So to move them all was more than a daunting task. It was a nightmare. And I mean that literally. I had nightmares about it.

You may be wondering what could be so bad. It’s just moving. Throw the stuff in some bubble wrap, write “Fragile” on the side and call it a day. Well, you see, that would be okay for normal people. However, my wife and I are not normal people. Our entire apartment was covered in framed art. And I do mean the entire apartment. You can watch a tour I did at this link right before we started taking things down to move. It’s literally hundreds of frames expertly puzzled together in a manic look most people hate. But we love it.

Plus, if you’ve seen videos like the one above of me building the largest Lego set ever created, you can begin to imagine how many fully constructed Lego sets are on display. So moving those, as well as framed art, as well as a 50-inch wide flat file filled with hundreds of pounds of posters, on top of everything else a normal person would move was, as I said, scary. It was ever scarier when we got hit with a massive penalty.

Quick aside to explain: Everyone told us buying a house in the Los Angeles area was damned near impossible. But it wasn’t for us. After about three months of looking, the first house we put an offer in was eventually accepted. The whole thing happened months before we expected it to, which was great—but also bad, because we were in a lease until the end of the year. So, to break that least, we had to put in two months notice and pay a $4000 penalty, which sucked almost as much as moving. However, we then knew we could stay in our apartment for two months and, in that time, slowly move everything into the new house, which is exactly what happened.

Just a small fraction of the frames waiting to find a new home in our new house.

Twice a week, at least, for two months, Jayne and I took two cars full of crap to the house, which is about 20 minutes away from the apartment. The majority of those trips were framed art and fragile collectibles like Lego sets. Now, if you look online about how to move Lego sets, most people suggest taking them all apart and putting them back together. To me, that was not an option. I love my brick creations but they take hours, days even, to put together. I’d rather them stay intact, thank you very much. So it became about figuring out ways to move not just those, but also hundreds of framed posters and works of art.

The art was relatively simple. Take them off the wall, carefully line them up on a newly-purchased handtruck, bring them to the car, neatly stack them on top of each other separated by towels or sheets, wrap the piled-up frames in towels or sheets and then put a few heavy boxes up against them so they wouldn’t move. Sometimes those boxes were also filled with smaller frames, also stuffed with things to make sure they didn’t scratch. Then it was a matter of driving slowly and carefully to the house and unloading them. Done and done.

I can’t imagine what the process would have been, or what it would have cost, to move further than 20 minutes away, but luckily that’s not a story I’m able to tell.

Legos in plastic containers were a lifesaver.

The Lego sets were, actually, a similar story. My friend Jonathan suggested large plastic containers to move them. This way, if something fell off, it was contained and easy to find. So we bought a few of those and very carefully moved them into those containers. All went well until we got to the massive Lego Millennium Falcon. We couldn’t find any container big enough for it. We found one that came close, though, and it moved to the house with only minor hull damage. It was its very own version of the Kessel Run.

So over the course of the two months, Jayne and I moved all of the posters and Lego builds to the house. We moved other stuff too, but we concentrated mostly on things we knew movers would struggle with. Then, as the move date approached, I realized that my poster-filled flat file was going to be more of an issue than originally thought. This thing is seriously massive, seriously heavy, and filled with lots of very easily damaged limited paper.

My flat file in the new house. Tissue box inserted for scale.

An artist friend suggested moving each draw individually. However, you can’t walk through a doorway with a drawer because it’s too wide. You have to tip and angle it. To do that, he suggested applying pressure to keep the posters from moving when it was being tilted to get through the door. There was some huge risk in that, though. So, over the last week before the move, every trip to the house came with a stack of 30-50 posters, flat, in the back of my car. It turned out that you could stack flat posters pretty high on the handtruck and, as long as you didn’t nick the corners going through doors, it was fairly painless. With the flat file eventually empty, the movers moved it with ease, not having to worry about damaging the valuables inside.

Oh, and as for all the action figures, Hot Toys, Master Replica lightsabers, and more…we had been renting a storage unit to keep empty boxes in for most of those items. So it was just a matter of picking them up, repacking each item, and then moving them normally. It took some foresight but it worked out.

All of which is to say: moving is really hard. But it’s even harder if you have geek shit to think about—valuable, fragile shit you love and trust no one else with. Our movers were great but I think they would have been less great if we told them they had to move 300 framed pieces of art when they arrived.

So that’s my story. What’s yours. Do need tips? Hints? I’ll answer some questions below. But also, feel free to chime in with your own stories.


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Source: Kotaku.com

We Built the 2,300-Piece Stranger Things Lego Set and Now We’re in the Upside Down

Toys and CollectiblesAction figures, statues, exclusives, and other merchandise. Beware: if you look here, you’re probably going to spend some money afterwards.  

Lego my Eggo! When we saw that Stranger Things was getting its own 2,300-piece Lego set, Gizmodo video producer Raul Marrero knew he had to journey into the Upside Down and create this monstrosity. Check out our time-lapse video build of the Byers’ home, just in time for season three of Stranger Things. Be careful: The Mind Flayer might be watching too.

Built in about 12 to 16 hours (over the course of three days), this Stranger Things set recreates both the regular and Upside Down versions of Joyce, Jonathan, and Will’s home, stacked on top of each other. It’s 2,287 pieces of cool Easter eggs and references, featuring special cameos from the Alphabet wall, Will the Wise’s wizard hat, Eleven’s Eggo waffles, and of course a cute little Demogorgon figure you can use to haunt the heroes. If you want to stop him, there’s an oh-so-adorable bear trap too.

Be sure to check out the video to see how this Stranger Things Lego set came together. We’ve also included some amazing photos of the build, so you can get an up-close peek at all the fun details. 

Stranger Things: The Upside Down Lego set is currently available at the Lego Store for $199. Stranger Things 3 is now out on Netflix.


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Source: Kotaku.com