Senin, 05 Agustus 2013

[Toy] F-15・ACTV Active Eagle

Toy has posted a new item, 'F-15・ACTV Active Eagle'


Review by VF5SS
To this date the Volks's A3 line has the most extensive range of Muv-Luv
merchandise. It has covered all the major Tactical Surface Fighter designs and
just about every variant thereof. While some appear quite frequently on the
aftermarket for reasonable prices, others pop up once in a BETA infested moon
and command exorbitant amounts of yen. For whatever reason, the F-15ACTV Active
Eagle tended to run at least the equivalent to $110 USD. When I saw a lonely
used one Mandarake for just 2,500 yen (about $25), I quickly scooped it up. So
how does this rare bird fare? Let's find out.

One of Argos Test Flight's Active Eagles blasts through the air while trying to
avoid an international incident during the third episode of Total Eclipse.

Please check out my video review.

The F-15ACTV Active Eagle was the tenth normal retail release in Volks's A3 line
and hails from the Muv-Luv Alternative spinoff: Total Eclipse. Interestingly
enough I have heard the A3 line was tied in heavily with Total Eclipse as the
latter was conceived as a way to create more Tactical Surface Fighters that
could be made into action figures. In universe, the Active Eagle is described as
a test bed for upgrading all F-15's through the use of more powerful jump units
and extra thrusters all over.

Naturally this figure shares a great number of components with the Strike Eagle
as both were released the same year. The name and function of the Active Eagle
is derived from its real life namesake, the F-15 ACTIVE. Both were technology
demonstrators that aimed to show how an existing air frame can stay on the
cutting edge without the need of a whole new machine. Like the regular Strike
Eagle, the Active Eagle figure stands about 6 inches tall is made mostly out of
thick PVC plastic.

The Active Eagle is absolutely brimming with extra engine nozzles for increased
performance.

In addition to the upgraded jump units attached to its waist, the Active Eagle
sports a pair of additional boosters that take the place of the usual mount
pylons.

Even with the extra equipment, the Active Eagle is no touchier than most A3
figures when it comes to balancing. It helps that the jump units only stick out
a fairly gentle angle.

The jump units feature an interesting gimmick in where the wings can be swapped
out with a pair that feature additional fuel tanks. It's a nice little touch for
airplane enthusiasts to show how all that extra power commands a powerful
thirst.

Even without the additional engines, the base Active Eagle still sports a number
of new parts such as the large arm mounted sensors and a some calf doohickeys.

Like many A3 figures, you get a pair of fill in parts for the knee joints that
completely impedes their movement in the name of line art fidelity. Again I am
not a TSF knee fetishist so I usually just leave these in the box.

The upper body features some extensive remolding from the Strike Eagle as the
torso sports additional detailing with both the shoulder pads and head being
completely new. The new head is a welcome upgrade in terms of articulation and
it can much more easily look to the left or right even when the additional back
boosters are attached. The beefy thrust vectoring engines in the shoulders are a
nod to the modified engines seen on the real F-15 ACTIVE. These new shoulders do
retain the moving flaps that angle up when the bicep is rotated. Also note that
the skirt armor even have additional orange colored sensors. Even the
nosecone-like codpiece has more detailing.

Aside form the head, the Active Eagle's articulation is largely the same as the
Strike Eagle's. The only other major improvement is how the open ended ankle
guards let the Active Eagle do a little more stretching before battle. With the
toes pointing forward like that, the whole leg kind of look like a dragon with a
single green eye.

In terms of accessories, the Active Eagle is a "what you see is what you get"
kind of figure. With the space for mount pylons being allocated to the
additional boosters, you only get a pair of guns for its main armament with the
usual American close combat weapons consisting of a pair of knives. Rounding
things out is a pair of splayed hands and fists.

You also get a set of uncut decals. These are identical to the set that comes
with the Strike Eagle. They are clear sticky type markings.

As an action figure, the Active Eagle is a fairly competent one. The A-Lock
joints provide a good range of motion with the stability of ratcheted clicks. As
the joints are limited to a certain number of clicks in any direction, finding
the right position for a good pose is key.

Despite coming from a high end doll and garage kit maker, A3 figures have the
design sense of a retail level collector's toy. They're not exactly Robot
Damashii level, more like upscale Revoltechs.

The aircraft gray coloring on the Active Eagle strengthens its connection with
the real life warplanes that inspired Tactical Surface Fighters. Like the Strike
Eagle, the paint is a little thick and rough in places with a few of the small
moving flaps suffering from some paint gluing. Fortunately I have a friend who
is a master modeler to help fix a minor break on one of the skirt armor's
movable flaps. Although I think he may have sacrificed a pigeon to get the part
back to me.

Like most TSF's, the Active Eagle looks quite intimidating.

While the knives are good and straight, the big sensors on the arms tend to bend
due to the softness of the PVC.

Thanks to its movable skirts, the Active Eagle can achieve a decent kneeling
pose.

With a strong display stand such as a Yamato Might Block base, the Active Eagle
can take flight. It can be hard to find good place to mount these guys in a
stand as their inherent back heaviness makes them want to lean back.

Overall the Active Eagle is simply a more elaborate looking version of the
regular Strike Eagle. As an early entry in the A3 line, it is a competent action
figure that is especially fun for Muv-Luv fans. It doesn't quite have the fit
and finish of later A3 figures like the F-4J Kai Zuikaku or the F-16 Fighting
Falcon but is a good presentation of the Active Eagle. For the lack of any other
merchandise of this design, it fills the niche with workmanlike execution. I
wouldn't pay above its MSRP for it so try to find a good deal on places like
Mandarake or Yahoo Japan auctions.
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