Series: The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword
Sculptor: Asai Masaki
Manufacturers: Good Smile Co, and Max Factory
Release Date: October 2013
My Figure Collection: http://myfigurecollection.net/item/98865
When GSC first announced their plans to make a Link figma I was super excited! I have had a fascination with the pointy eared hero for quite awhile now. In the 80’s I fell in love with Link and Zelda via the animated series. I get a lot of crap from Tekizen for liking that show, but to this day I still rewatch it every so often. What can I say, I love it!
Then the day came that the prototype was revealed. I had not played a new Zelda game since Ocarina of Time. I found that my talents were better suited for turn based combat. Needless to say this Link caught me off guard. He was scruffy, and wearing baggy pants!!What!? I was disappointed. I mean really, really disappointed.
I didn’t know what to think. I wanted it because it was Link, but I feel that figmas kind of hit a slump, and his design was so weird. It only got worse when they showed him coloured. The mustard yellow pants were just too much. I wasn’t the only one bothered, the rest of the internet wanted a Twilight Link. I was curious what was so special about the Twilight version, so I went looking into the two games. I was honestly surprised by how much I actually like the artwork for Skyward Sword. I still preferred my Link to be more the sleek, pretty Ocarina style, but this one looked pretty cool. Even better the figma looked spot on! I no longer felt indecision. He would be mine, and once again I would pick up my controller and fight for my princess! Now that I got my history with Zelda as well as my initial feelings of angst out of the way we can move, and talk about the only figma in 2013 that I laid down hard earned cash for.
For simplicity’s sake I am going to go over Link’s standard features, before tapping into his optional features. The first of Link’s two faces is the less angry one. For some reason Link is not allowed to be happy. He has “less angry” face, and “downright pissed” face. From my experience with the source material I really feel like he should have a smiling option. Whereas the game was emotionally intense, there were definitely points in which our hero smiled, even if only briefly. This “less angry” expression looks fantastic. I really love his facial features. His eyebrows angling downward add to that slightly irritated appearance. His features are all applied evenly, and clear. He looks really great!
One of the things that people seemed to really dislike about this figure was his full lips. They complained, saying that he looked like he was wearing lipstick. Really!? I think his mouth looks great, and overall am pretty happy with his facial structure. He even has a fantastic profile. While we have him turned to the side, we can also check out those fabulous ears. I have always had a thing for pointy ears. They turned out well. They are not to long, or to thin. Link wears a tiny blue earring through each lobe. These are done really well, and painted a nice metallic blue.
Link also came with an alternate hair piece. There is one that lays calmly around his face, and another that looks wind blown. I think when using the “less angry” face, the calmer looking style suits him better in most cases. There are of course exceptions. The hair is easy to remove, which makes swapping faces so much easier. The sculpt of his bangs is good. I have grown to really appreciate the scruffy do. They did a really good job recreating it.
The green hat which has been a staple in Link’s design since the beginning comes with an interesting point of articulation. At the back of his head where the hat flops downward, there is a point where you can turn it. This lets you choose the direction it goes. Given Link’s array of action poses this adds a bit of realism to the figure. I think it is a nifty touch. The design of the hat itself is pretty cool. They added sartorial seams along the sides. I think it looks pretty decent. It is pretty funny though, when you turn it the seams are no longer congruent…
Under the hat Link has some hair poking out the back. It is pretty simple, but it looks really good.
If we switch out his face and hair for their counterparts, the entire feel of this figure changes. Now he’s ready to kick some villain heiny! I really like this expression. It really exemplifies how I felt playing this game from the first time I met Impa onward. His features are again strikingly clear. The eyebrows are angled down even further, making him look even more angry. Link’s blue eyes are great. I really like the dark outline. It makes his eyes stand out really well. Link’s open mouth has a bit of detail going on. He still has really great lips, but now he has a tongue and teeth. The inside of his mouth doesn’t look flat, which is cool. It really looks like he is yelling.
He has a joint under his head, and to look up or down. This may not sound so impressive, but I have gotten action figures that can’t do this. Most recently Sailor Mercury, but even before Luka’s nendo and figma both had issues looking around. Despite having hair that comes down to his shoulders in back, Link is able to look in all directions.
Link is wearing his standard green tunic over what looks like a peasant shirt, and a plate mail. Wait. What? Plate mail? This is one of the few things about this figure that really displeases me. They didn’t sculpt the links in his chain shirt, which makes it look a might off.
The tunic looks good. I like the sartorial seams around his collar and sleeves. There is also a double seam that runs down each side. Pretty sturdy clothing, perfect for an adventure. There are some wrinkles in the fabric over his belly, and on the lower portion of the garment. The white shirt is pretty plain, but it looks nice with the tunic. The problem is still with the chain shirt. Chain mail is meant to be made from many connecting link…kind of like a fence. It should protect the wearer while still being fairly light, and flexible. It is a great choice of armour for a character like Link. I can only assume that they left it this way due to laziness. That is the only thing I do not like about his midsection. The paint looks good. I was especially happy that the sheath harness was painted well. Sometimes the paint on figma gets a little out of hand.
On the back of the figure you can see Link’s adventure pouches. I thought that was nifty. The hole there is where you attach his sheath.
Another aspect of this figure that looks really great are his points of articulation. He has two on his torso, and you can’t really see either of them. The first of them is hidden just under the sheath strap. I thought that was an awesome way to disguise it. This allows him to turn or bend slightly at his chest. The second one is at his belt. Link’s waist also turn, but you can’t see this at all without “very” close inspection. I can’t remember the last time I saw a figma that looked this smooth.
The sleeves of his tunic look good. They use the the same wide hem here that was used on his collar. The white shirt can be seen again over each elbow. I think the undershirt makes him look really warm. He is wearing bracers over his forearms. These things have no detail at all. They do look pretty cool from a distance, the blue really stands out.
The joints in his arms are a bit harder to hide. The ones in his shoulders blend in really nicely. The edge of the tunic makes it look pretty clean. The joints at his elbows are really obvious, but I am not complaining. There are always a slight bit of aesthetic issues with action figures, though some definitely do a better job than others. I love the use of his gear to make him look so sharp!
His hands are another story all their own. GSC did something pretty here, though I find it a bit unnecessary. Link has always been left handed, ever since the Zelda series began. When Link made the journey over to the Wii there was a problem. Most people are in fact, not left handed. It was decided that Wii Link would henceforth be right handed. This seems like a pretty sensible solution to me, but fans raged over this change. I found it a bit amusing because so many things change from game to game, and so many of the featured Links aren’t even the same guy, so I just figured this is another change that will be a part of Skyward Link that sets him apart. Instead of giving us cool accessories or optional weapons GSC decided to cater to the purists. Figma link comes with five right hands, and five left ones. They mirror each other perfectly, meaning he is ambidextrous Link. I think this is a waste of resources. We will get into the different hand options when I go over his sample poses. I do love the fingerless gloves. They are painted well, but seem to have weird holes in the side from the joints. Speaking of joints, Link’s hands can turn any direction, and bend up and down.
Link’s mustard coloured pants have kind of grown on me. It took a little while, but I like it. He feels more like an adventurer now. His pants are baggy, and full of wrinkles. I think it looks especially good where they tuck into his boots. Speaking of boots I am pretty fond of those as well. The knee high footwear is painted nicely, and the sculpt isn’t to shabby either.
The articulation on his legs looks good. The joints at his hips move smoothly, and are hidden under his tunic. It is also pretty cool that they put a slit in the side of his tunic, and armor to give him a better range of motion. His knees bend as well. This you can clearly tell from the back, but those knees are hidden behind the boots. Bending them reveals the joint, but when he stands still it looks great. His boots are also posable in two places, once at the ankle and again at the twos. Both of these joints are completely visible, but they blend in really well with the dark shade of the boots. I have never really been a fan of posable toes, but it works really well with his running and jumping poses.
Link comes with ten hands, two faces, two hair pieces, the Master Sword, a sheath, a action sword trail, and the Hylian Shield. He also has a standard figma base.
The Master Sword is pretty neat. The paint on it looks really nice. I was a bit worried though, with the original release of this figure the pommel was painted on…It was supposed to be removable to accommodate getting it into his grip hand. So many people posted horror stories of prying it off with a fork or worse yet, breaking it entirely. Thankfully I did not have an issues removing the piece. It seems they may have fixed the problem the second time around.
The matching sheath fits right onto his back, and can be adjusted to work with whichever hand you are using. The sword fits in it too. This is yet another good looking aspect of this figure.
The shield is a pretty awesome accessory. When I first started playing with it I had no clue why it had so many darn peg holes, but the Hylian Shield has three variations of use.
It is fully functional on both his right and left arms, and when not in use Link can wear it on his back. I really love this. I mean a lot! The strap stays in the center for either wrist, and the handle can be moved to either side. You can also turn it in the center for positioning on his back.
The Master Sword’s action effect looks really neat. You just slide it over the blade, set his pose, and a normal swing of the sword turns into a powerful charged attack!
There are six sample shots of Link on the back of the box, excluding the alternate faces. Let’s see how the actual figure looks in each one.
Well this looks tough. Link is just standing there holding his accessories and looking grumpy. I guess I shouldn’t make fun of it, since some people really couldn’t make this work due the sword malfunction. Easy enough though. Maybe he looks grumpy because he doesn’t get anything else. I would love to have a fairy in a bottle, or even a normal potion.
This second pose looks like he is just about to attack, or maybe like he just deflected an attack with the shield. Either way, I didn’t really like this one. It wasn’t to hard to get him into position, but I think it looks clumsy.
The third pose uses the action effect, in conjunction with a lunge attack. It looks pretty sweet! By sweet of course I mean deadly.
This one honestly was the hardest for me to get right. It doesn’t really test his limits or anything, it is just really hard to get the angle right. The twisted waist really through me off.
The last pose is easily my favourite. I don’t know if it is because I have seen it so much or if it is just that damn cool. I have gotten this one down pretty well. For that mater this is how he appears on my shelf.
This a great adaptation of the character.
He has a large array of poses.
He also has a wide range of mobility.
His faces look great.
The few accessories he has are top notch.
The articulation does not hinder his overall look.
He could definitely have come with more stuff.
Both of his faces look angry.
Overall Enjoyment: 10/10
Also just to note, after playing through Skyward Sword I think Ocarina Link looks funny…What the heck happened!?