Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Review: [Bandai] S.I.C. Volume 56 Kamen Rider Kuuga -Decade Edition-

Figure Information
Manufacturer: Bandai
Origin Series: Kamen Rider Kuuga
Scale: Non-Scale
Height: Approximately 18cm tall
Original Price: 6,300 Yen

Figure Box:

Following the typical S.I.C. boxes, there's a window which pretty much shows you everything he has already and there's an extension on the back most at the top so you can cling the boxes into long hooks and whatnot. The design is quite simple and is patterned after Kuuga's Amazing Mighty Form, something packed along in this volume.

Figure Details:

Well, you know me, and you pretty much know my comments already when it comes to S.I.C.s since after all, I did buy them for their ridiculously amazing details. The details are indeed heavy with almost every SIC release, Kuuga while looking ridiculously plain from the original suit design, has been really well imagined in terms of additional details, his supposedly pure black parts are now lined with our typical SIC frame panel lines and his armor pads have additional visible added stylings or should I say marks which adds to that goth feel we usually get on S.I.C. releases and a more "fit" armor for his body, as his show suit had a really small shoulder pad fro some reason. And there, still pretty plain in overall look but still very good in details.

What's the selling part in the Decade edition release would be the new body mold, as the old Kuuga are also on the more imaginative side, making him skinny and monstrous enough, Decade edition captures Kuuga's suit more in terms of being more accurate than imaginative. It's not really a minus for me despite being less imaginative since after all, all Heisei Rider releases since Ryuki have been pretty much more show accurate than imaginative in terms of their overall design.

Of course, this wouldn't be Decade edition, if we don't have Decade's belt included in it. Supposedly in the accessories section, but since this is indeed a belt, and thus, changing the rider's identity as well, I've put it here. Well, like Kabuto's release, the belt is still and doesn't really flip like the one in Decade's. But still, a pretty welcomed addition here. You can attach the ride booker to the side as usual.

Now going to more details would be another one of those parts swapping we get from most SICs, but here, we get the Amazing Mighty Form as stated in the figure box section. I don't really know why they picked Amazing Mighty; it didn't even appear in Decade and yeah, the box and tamashii page might not say this is Decade Edition but when the magazine scans from HJ first announced this, there was indeed a Decade Edition subtitle there. Anyway, it might be a lazy move by bandai since after all, the mold of the Amazing Mighty suit is the same as Mighty or any other basic forms of Kuuga.

While it is a reuse of mold, his color does indeed stand out compared to Mighty and most people will probably using the Amazing Mighty configuration for display. All of Mighty's "carvings" in his armor pads are now gold trimmed as it should be and the gold certainly does look nice, his leg also has gold plates now in this form, being the major difference from Mighty. The belt's core is also changed to a somewhat gold-ish core. But really what I liked was the gauntlets of Amazing Mighty, though it's a reuse of mold, there are now panel lines in them which makes the form look more devastating.

One thing I am disappointed at would be the hand guard plates, each of the two forms only has one pair of hand plates, meaning that for every switch of hands, you would need to pull out that plate piece and attach it to the current hand, really a bad move IMO.

And now the main event of the so-called Decade Edition...

Yes! Like what Bandai did in Kabuto's release, we get Kuuga's Final Form Ride, the Kuuga Gouram.

And just like the first FFR, it's one big piece for the shell and it's also one big mixture of plastic and die-cast parts. The details are superb, with all the carvings and even the characters from the language of the Grongi, if I'm not mistaken since I haven't watched Kuuga yet. Anyway, the color is a nice mixture of black, gold and bronze.

What's really amazing here is that you can actually assemble the Kuuga Gouram without the use of Kuuga's body unlike the previous which need the body to be complete. The only thing you'll miss would be the sticking out legs of Kuuga in the back of Gouram when you do decide to form the FFR without any body use.

And some last bits of details, you can split open the back of the gouram's shell and turn them into wings and also at the same time, reveal some more appreciated detail :D


No Accessories section? Well, he doesn't have any since he's a fist and foot user, and the only "accessory" he had was the ride booker aside from the swap parts and option hands, but he can't even grip the booker since he doesn't have any grip hands to begin with. So for the points of articulation for all human-type forms are as follows: a ball /swivel (bottom/top) jointed neck, ball jointed shoulders, torso, ankles and hips, double jointed hinge elbows and knees, a hinge on the toes and lastly, some mix of hinge and swivel joint on the wrists. A new wrist joint is implemented here as the joints are directly attached to the arm instead of hinges attached to the hands like before. It does look fragile but hey, SHFs also had feel but they are sturdy at least. XD

It doesn't really matter for all human type forms since they basically have the same armor pads in use. And again, the shoulder pads limit you up here, but it's ok actually since Kuuga doesn't even raise to a 180 degree point like how Ichigo jumps. The pads usually allow you to swivel the arms to a certain extent as well, so, it's good. Pretty much the only dismay I have would be that I can't replicate Kuuga's kneeling pose whenever he finishes a mid-air rider kick as the torso just wouldn't allow you absolute bending but yeah, still your standard articulation which is enough for collectors like me. Fun shots for the human-type forms below.

Now, the Gouram doesn't really have "articulation", it's just good for display really and the only thing you can actually do is to split open the back or its pincers which can actually trap S.I.C. figures in it's open space, pretty cool huh? and yeah, remember Movie War 2010? :p

Additionally, the volume gets an additional fun factor if you actually have Decade with you. ^^

Final Thoughts:

So after all the long talk, it comes down to the question "Is this Kuuga worth it?". Well, yeah, he's great, especially when compared to the only previous Kuugas released. The Articulation is nice, as well as the design itself. The FFR is still a decent addition by all means especially since it can be built alone on its own. The only thing I kind of felt that bandai ripped me off was the actual inclusion of the Amazing Mighty form, yeah, it's better than the Mighty by all means but it's still a fact that the armor pads you use are still the same one as Mighty's, could've been Ultimate or Rising Ultimate instead, but I guess that's just asking too much XD or bandai just wants to make more money by making one in the future. But still, yeah, the Kuuga Decade Edition is one neat pack and I really recommend it to SIC collectors.

Rating (Out of 10)
Details 9
Price 8.5


  1. Hi, I just happened to pass by my local store and I found the SIC classic 2008 Kuuga, then the Decade Edition Kuuga. What is your take on them and which is more worth the price tag?

  2. If you're after the more "imaginative" side go after the 2008 Kuuga, if die cast content and play value, then go for the Decade Edition. But then again, it's good to get both I guess since the old Kuuga's the only one with the Ultimate Form so far. :) I can't really say which is more worth since I think both of them have their worth XD