Anyway, this set has probably not passed by that many Gundam fans unnoticed. I myself had been itching to get it once it was announced and now, with the figures in hand, I dare say it was easily worth the wait. The way this set expands the figure line is just tremendous. I myself can't wait for more Zeon forces to join the line but with the Black Tri-Star pack I will at least be able to overlook the fact that the next set will contain nothing but hero Gundam units...
Apart from the three figures themselves, the package contains a multi-part action base which can be assembled by following some illustrations on the inside of the box. While I personally do not bother with these action bases so much can be said, that this one consists of a two-part flat tile which is placed in a sloping fashion on top of four legs. Three multi-part arms of varying length can then be pegged to the base by choosing from nine available holes. Each arm can attach to one figure, allowing for it to take a flying or similar pose without needing to balance it on the ground. It is worth to note however, that the the three figures only have three points where you can attach it to the action base, there is a hole under each sole and one on the skirt-back, somewhat more limited than many of the figures in the Assault Kingdom line. Considering that the peg on the skirt-back is also used to carry the bazooka if not in use, this brings the available slots down to only two.
Alright, enough moaning about the action base. What will really get you going is this lot of accessories. Just look at that picture, you would be forgiven to think this was an MSIA action figure, or at the very least a HCM Pro figure. Each Zaku is given a complete set of weapons, and there are a total of sixteen hands (strangely enough all types are replicated in three except for the left hand forward leaning grip) to choose from. Interestingly, unit 03 which has the typical Zaku leader antenna has been given an alternate helmet without antenna which can be used instead if you so choose.
|Spaghetti western-style: These three Zakus are fully loaded with extra weapons.|
Lastly a comparison can be made to the old FW Ultimate Operation line figure, which appeared in June 2004. Like most FWUO figures the old counterpart has a strong expression and a lovely chunky design. This is something which is hard for the Assault Kingdom figures to replicate, as they generally need be as slim as possible to allow for more articulation. On the other hand articulation on FWUO:s is generally limited to parts of the arms and a swiveling torso though. Both figures are great in their own right and ultimately it comes down to what you wish to accomplish with your collection.
In conclusion you may already have gathered that this Assault Kingdom triple pack is an absolute mandatory entry into your AK collection. It simply trumphs all the figures that have so far preceeded it, and I look forward to seeing future AK-sets drawing inspiration from its level of customization. Top marks to Bandai for this set, and I recommend you grab it now while it is still fresh and easily available.