This is my second HCM Pro figure/model after the Destiny Gundam. The box this figure comes in is a lot bigger than the regular HCM Pro boxes because it has the dual-fuction display base (which the destiny lacked) and two backpacks and the typical accessory runners that includes the shield, spare v-fin, beam rifle, wings for Oowashi and beam sabers.
The figure is in gold plating so I put a glove before handling it to prevent fingerprints. Like with the HCM Pro Destiny, the entire figure is very loose. None of its joints are stiff. I wonder if all HCM Pro are like this or if I’m just that unlucky. WIthout the packs on, it can still stand normally though it will take some time to adjust everything to look right. The gold on the Akatsuki is rather dirty looking… I can see some lime green, yellow, orange, and brown. I just know it’s a different shade of gold compared to the Gold Frame and MG Hyper Mode God Gundam.
Plugging in the Oowashi backpack will cause Akatsuki to be back-heavy and thanks to the weak joints, it crashes down a lot. It’s very annoying because the thing can barely stand even after leaning the whole body forward to balance out the weight of the backpack. When I was able to get it to stand, the result was only temporary and it’ll just fall down later anyway. Besides, it doesn’t even look good standing if I have to make the whole body lean out so much. The problem was remedied by placing Akatsuki on its blue display base.
The Shiranui pack is a lot better; Akatsuki is not as back heavy and is able to stand. Its display base is now transformed into effect parts for the DRAGOON/Fin Funnel/Bits/whatever you want to call it. Once the effects part is on, then it’ll only be a matter of time before it tilts the figure down unless you position it well enough (more body leaning nonsense).
The one thing I hate the most about this figure is the V-fin and its “ears” on the side of the head tends to slip off often. More often than I would like to tolerate. It makes turning the head without pieces coming off very hard to do. It is very annoying because while trying to put the ears back, I can easily accidentally knock out the v-fin and vice versa.
The price… this HCM Pro retails for 5200 yen which is utterly ridiculous for something so small and imperfect. Even if you factor in the gold plating and that this is a “complete set”, it still doesn’t justify the price. For comparison’s sake, this HCM Pro figure cost more than the MG Hyper Mode God Gundam (also gold plated, retail 4500 yen), most GFF, BOTH of its 1/144 HG models combined (2400 yen retail, 4800 yen total), most not-supersized MG kits, and it’s only about $10-15 difference between its 1/100 model counterpart. Can I get a LOLWUT?! I seriously don’t see nor understand why this tiny little thing is so expensive. Avoid this if you can’t find it for less than ~$25. I bought this for 2080 yen +shipping from HLJ when they put it on clearance.
I apologize for the poor lighting in these photos. I did not realize how dark they were until I was done (they looked really bright on my camera). The last few shots were taken afterwards in a higher resolution and adjustments to show the true color of its gold plating.