What would it be like if we were born as mages to live in a world where our jobs are to complete quests and fight vicious beasts — dragons are included! Will you feel great or frightened?
The anime Fairy Tail is set in a kingdom full of magic, vicious beasts, and of course, dark entities. In order to set the balance, mages protect these lands and join guilds to make money. As a young wizard, Natsu Dragneel is adept in using Fire Dragon Slayer Magic which is unique to him and for some yet unknown reason, he can do so because he was raised by the Fire Dragon King, Igneel. Natsu took this advantage to join the strongest guild, Fairy Tail, and settled on his journey.
Tsume Art went headstrong and made their own line-up of Fairy Tail figures in their Standing Characters collection. Aside from Natsu Dragneel, the collection also includes the main protagonist’s buddies — Lucy Heartfilia, Grey Fullbuster, and Erza Scarlett in their own unique poses.
Manufacturers put their heart into every figure that they make, but for apparent reasons, some people ignore that fact. These people, who are like beasts, make illegal copies of figures which has gruesome outcomes. More often than not, you’ll be disappointed if you see such a sight.
There’s hope in obliterating bootlegs, and it is up to every collector to have the knowledge in rejecting these awful stuff.
ORIGIN OF FAKE
Bought on: AliExpress
Distribution Area: Worldwide
If you’re looking to collect anime figures, then it will be best to avoid AliExpress as the website is full of fake and manipulated items. Some item posts may indicate that the items are real, but you will eventually doubt the authenticity once you delve into it. This is not only true to AliExpress alone because regardless if it’s a website run by a Chinese company or not, bootlegs are gonna crawl their way down to any e-commerce website — even some items in Amazon are suspected as fake.
E-commerce websites don’t seem to have this situation under control because vendors like Amelie are still openly selling bootleg figures. It’s amusing how Amelie posted sample pictures of the bootlegs up close just to let buyers know that the items are frightening. The bootlegs could easily be described as deformed cake candles, but we’ll dig deeper into that with this fake Standing Character Natsu figure!
DESCRIPTION OF FAKE
The fake Natsu Dragneel figure arrived with a box — as how it would disguise itself. By looking at the fake figure’s box, you’ll feel a vibe which makes you trust the figure. Once you get to touch it, however, you’ll doubt every corner of it.
For a first, the box feels flimsy. You will question its quality since a proper packaging wouldn’t be this frail. Looking at the other corners of the box, you’ll notice that there are crumples and a tear on the top cover. The bottom is almost incapable of holding the figure inside because of its delicate lock. And if that doesn’t reassure you that this is indeed a bootleg, then you haven’t noticed the varying quality of resolution of the box’s print.
Altogether, the fake figure’s box seems like it would actually pull the trick. However, manufacturers will always have their logos intact on any packaging of their figures. And as for the fake figure’s box, Tsume Art’s logo is nowhere to be found even when it’s already the obvious manufacturer of this figure looking at the back’s web link.
The real Standing Character Natsu Dragneel figure box definitely has the logos intact. For this collection, you’ll be able to find the Chibi Tsume and the Standing Character logo. To further verify the box, the Chibi Tsume logo can be found on the front, back, and at the top while the SC logo appears on the front, a big one on the left, and lastly at the back. The European logo of Fairy Tail should also be observed.
Upon opening the box, the fake Natsu Dragneel figure is inside a fragile plastic casing. Usually, authentic figures are also in a fitted plastic bag while in such a plastic casing though it looks like this fake’s just waiting to unveil its true nature.
In total, the components include the figure and the base. Judging from the base’s appearance, it looks like it’s missing a ‘bit’ for standing the figure properly. Turning the base over, no imprints can be located which indicates that the figure is a counterfeit.
The fake Natsu Dragneel figure itself isn’t far from the box’s appearance. Its looks are deceiving, yet it lays out all of its flaws shamelessly.
Starting from the top, the hair of the fake figure feels rough and is filled with unsteady edges. The strands, if you observe carefully, lacks definition and falls far from the pointy hair of the character. Going through its facial features, you’ll notice that the face is pale — compared to the shade of the body. This inconsistency, although hard to notice, raises a clear doubt once you see the difference.
Natsu’s regular outfit always come with a scarf. While it won’t be as defined in the anime at most times, it should at least be when being sculpted properly. This fake Natsu Dragneel figure obviously failed to do that. Some areas of the carving are just faded while a certain area on the fake figure’s left neck is awfully damaged. The scarf looks hideous up to its tip as there are excess plastic flaps that were left behind.
The fake Natsu Dragneel figure also has a negligent paint job. If you look at some corners of its outfit, you’ll discover that some areas are scratched while others overlap from where it’s supposed to end up.
Like the upper body portion of the fake figure, the lower body also has the similar flaws. Apart from the faded paint job, the color shading from this side of the figure also seems bland. You’ll notice that the bright colors on this figure lacks brightness — having to suspect the bootleggers for taking advantage on the fake figure’s dark outfit.
The feet are always the easiest to spot in a fake figure. In every bootleg figure that we’ve talked about, this area would always be filled with undesirable spottings and overlapping paint. For some reason, the figure pirates can’t seem to carve the toes properly, and as anticipated, the fake Natsu Dragneel figure also follows this trend.
If you get a chance to see the real Standing Character Natsu Dragneel figure, then you’ll probably be in awe. The real figure just looks stunning, and perfectly carved. Its consistent details says a lot about how meticulous it was created.
From all of the flaws that we’ve pointed out on the fake, the real Natsu Dragneel domates in every aspect of quality. The colors are vibrant, the sculpt looks neat and proper, and the features isn’t far from the anime. It may not be the best design Tsume has to offer, but it’s best for a budget collection.
The fake Natsu Dragneel figure requires to be bought in a set of other awful bootleg Standing Character figure which costs about $20. For the price per figure, the fake Natsu Dragneel costs around $5 which isn’t worth it for any bootleg that you can find. The budget would probably give you 5 attempts on a toy crane at Walmart and that’s definitely more fulfilling than buying a fake figure.
The real Standing Character Natsu Dragneel figure costs around $22 which is totally a reasonable price for a quality figure. It’s already affordable considering that a branded shirt costs around the same price as well. If you’re just starting to collect anime toy figurines, then this is just around the benchmark of a starter’s collection. To put that into perspective, mid-end figures could go as high as $100, and while putting the size into consideration, some high-end figures reach the thousand-dollar mark.
WHERE TO BUY THE REAL STANDING CHARACTER NATSU DRAGNEEL FIGURE
The real Standing Character Natsu Dragneel figure may already be out of stock based on search results. As expected, a well-made handcraft will be sold out in a year or two, however, production of such a renowned character like Natsu will never stop.
The real Standing Character Natsu Dragneel figure can initially be located in Tsume Art’s website. The current price of the figure could have taken a rise from its original price if it still meets the demand which is reasonable due to a scarcity of Fairy Tail figures.
Tsume Art, though, will be releasing an epic design of Natsu Dragneel within the 3rd quarter of 2019. Some reviews stated that it’s an “insane” yet “cool” design — which sounds very positive.
Although for a price tag of $1442 USD, the HQS+ Natsu Dragneel figure will definitely topple other high-end figures with its majestic design. It’s a very promising figure, and judging from its status in the website, a lot of collectors anticipated the release and broke that pre-order button until it sold out.
After seeing a real Natsu Dragneel figure, you’d only want to give the most negative description for the fake figure. Needless to say, the bootleg Natsu Dragneel figure looks pathetic in front of a real Tsume Art craft.
The fake Natsu Dragneel figure is full of imperfection. Its damaged physique says a lot about its selling quality, while its lousy paint job will suggest to keep it away from any of your display cabinets. Its sculpt helps in identifying it as a fake, but at the same time, it’s what that give its disgraceful appearance.
It’s best to keep away from such a counterfeit. With a deserving 75% terrible rating — please take this figure away!