Thursday, July 10, 2014

Review: S.H.Figuarts Cure Heart

Figure Information
Manufacturer: Bandai
Origin Series: Doki Doki Precure
Scale: Non-scale
Height: Approximately 15cm tall
Original Price: 4,860 Yen


First of all, sorry about the main photo, I know the Heart symbol pose is reversed and I realized it only after I was done with Cure Heart's figure shoot. orz

Ever since Smile line was released, bandai's tamashii nations division seems to have gone on Max Factory and GSC path by making the packaging generic for their so called "akiba girls collection" which is basically the female frame side of the S.H.Figuarts line. Having said that, S.H.Figuarts Cure Heart shares the very same style of packaging as that of the Smile Precure line, the Sailor Moon line and even their To-Love Ru line (starting with Momo), but unlike her Pink predecessor's box, Cure Heart, at least, gets a mixture of blue and pink on her box which does give a soothing feel around it. The sides remain as some random product shots and the back is pretty impressive since  the main shot they used is for the Heart Shoot and the bg they picked just blends so well with it!


Default face-wise, Mana's face is just okay for the most part and I think the outline on her mouth is just a bit too light, so, when I was viewing other reviews of her, some shots had the mouth barely visible although that's just me.

Going to the rest of her hair, I think it's either the QC was really rough on Heart or I just have a really bad luck since a part of Mana/Heart's hair looks like it's roughly finished and that her ponytail feels like it has a lighter yellow shade than the rest of her hair. Sculpting wise though, I like how the twirls in her hair was done as they are very show accurate and that they didn't miss out on any important details.

Going to her suit, particularly every bit of detail of her outfit is captured and painted pretty nicely and as a bonus, all of the heart emblems on her are finished with metallic dark red paint which works pretty nicely and blends well with the rest of the paint finish.

Additionally, what surprised me the most is that when you view Cure Heart's back, you can actually see Sharuru on her compact form and it does actually have a detailed Sharuru's face with it which made my face go ( OoO) and I think this is a very winner detail on Heart's mold.


Mana/Heart is definitely one of the most accessorized Figuarts I've seen in the precure lineup; standard tamashii stage and jointless neck aside, she comes with 3 alternate faces (a smiling face, a winking face and a shouting face) and 4 alternate pairs of hands (a variation of open hands pair, fists, a pair of hands for holding the Love Heart Arrow and a pair of hands for the Magical Lovely Pad) along with a joint hand part that has her forming the heart symbol which she does when telling her foes that she will be taking back their heart-pounding love. For her true accessories, she comes with pretty much almost everything you'll need as Heart comes with two variants of the Love Heart Arrow (a small and a big one) as well as the Magical Lovely Pad as mentioned during the hand pair breakdown. Lastly, Heart comes with her personal fairy/mascot, Sharuru (who looks stiff and awkward unlike previous mascots). If there's something Heart lacks, it's probably Regina the harp and wings that the group uses for the Royal Lovely Straight Flush and the card she throws for the Lovely Straight Flush.

Articulation Points:

While generally the same as with most figuarts when it comes to the placement of joints, Cure Heart certainly does have very good improvements on her frame for being a Precure Figuarts.

Starting with the usual head, the upper connector allows you tilt Heart's head while the lower connect connector allows you to rotate her head sideways; what's new about the lower connector is that the peg socket now has the hexagonal/octagonal shape mold which makes her head a little bit rougher to move. Upwards and downwards movement continue to be satisfactory as they usually are.

Like other Cures before her, Heart does have some joints on her hair, first one is the one directly at the back, they can hinge inwards or outwards to a certain degree, a not really necessary joint but still a welcomed addition. Of course, the connecting tip to her ponytail is also articulated but can really just use the swivel factor to rotate the whole tail.

Cure Heart's shoulder pads are made up of soft plastic but it doesn't seem to be as scary flex as with Cure Happy. The pads are jointless so it does prevent rotating a full 360 on a straight raise, sideways of around 45 degrees does enable you to fully rotate her arms though. Heart's arms can fully rotate on a bicep swivel and the elbows, on a single hinge, work like your typical rider double joints that allow a 75 degree bend.

Torso articulation-wise, Heart has a really juicy inwards bend and a neat outwards. You can also swivel the upper torso on the joint to some degree.

By default, Heart can raise her leg foward to around 45 degrees due to the skirt limiting it but thanks to a magical solution by bandai, you can actually raise the skirt since it's only dangling on Heart's torso and once you do so, you get a very satisfying leg raise; this is also the case for the sideways split. Thigh swivels still exist and still allows a full on rotation while the knees retain the same good range of the other cures when bending. Lastly, the ankles does make use of the hinge by a little and it's actually pretty tricky to get her ankles to tilt since you really need to mess around with the joints' orientation if you want to pull that off, so, the main use of the ankles is mostly for swiveling purposes only.


The default, smiling and wiking faces does actually give S.H.Figuarts Cure Heart a very casual and friendly feel. Combine the right faces and right handsets does allow you to recreate a lot of dance steps from the 1st Ending theme dance.

Her hands are a little tricky to change and pose since the tip of her forearm sleeves come apart as well whenever you change hands. Hand switching aside though, Heart's frame is easy to adjust and the raise-able skirt does give her more dynamic capabilities and it finally feels like Bandai is a step closer to answering my woes on Precure Figuarts skirts. Additionally, Heart's shouting face has such a strong expression and I love its fierceness especially when used with the weapons/accessories she comes with. The big variant of the Love Heart Arrow certainly makes her a very cool figure when used with her shouting face.

Additional photos below that "tries" to recreate some scenes from the series hahaha.

Heart vs Meran's Dragon Form Charizard

Heart vs Proto Jikochuu Alien Warrior

Just your usual Cure vs Shocker Combatman pic.

Final Thoughts:

Being the first in line for Doki Doki Precure Figuarts releases, Cure Heart definitely leaves a good impression as her accessories are way more than satisfying, a change was also implemented to improve on the skirt limitation. Sure my piece have some few rough edges here and there on the details but looking at Heart's set as a whole, I think she more than justifies her slightly higher price point. To be honest, I've never been so contented with a Cure Figuarts since S.H.Figuarts Cure Sunshine so Cure Heart definitely have me anticipating on the future Doki Doki releases (and please Bandai, make a Regina Figuarts PLEASE!); with Diamond next in line, only time can tell who will be the next SHF release for the series. Definitely, if you're a DokiPre fan, S.H.Figuarts Cure Heart is one good piece to add to your collection (because everyone needs Cure Harem). 

And before I end, I sourced Oogai's Student Council President from CWToys!

I give SuperMana an overwhelming love of 4.5 out of 5.

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