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April 18, 2003


Filed under: Toy News — Rumble Crew @ 6:43 pm

I’ve known and liked Kamen Riders since I was kid growing up in Taiwan. However, aside from picture albums and a few toys, I’ve never actually watched any Kamen Rider on TV. That changed with Kamen Rider Ryuki last year. After finishing the Ryuki TV series and buying many of the Rider & Monster sets, I looked forward to the next Kamen Rider show, Kamen Rider 555 (Faiz), and its accompanying toys.

The S-RHF Faiz was the one Faiz toy that I was extremely interested in owning. I liked most of the Ryuki R&M sets and really liked the idea of having a posable Rider and his bike in a boxed set. In Faiz’s case, his bike even transformed into a robot, so as far as I’m concerned it’s even better.

The Faiz figure itself is constructed basically the same as the Riders in the Ryuki R&M sets. The only real difference in construction is the double jointed knees present on Faiz. This knee joint is similar to the chogokin Agito/Kuuga figures and allows Faiz to kneel. The big difference between Faiz and the Kamen Riders figures that came before him is the size. The Faiz figure is made to the same scale as the sofubi RH figures (or about the same as Marvel Legends figures), which means he towers over the previous Kamen Rider figures. This can be good or bad depending on how you see it. On one hand, bigger is usually better and in this case, since it’s the same size as the sofubi monsters, you can finally have your Kamen Rider fight (kind of) a monster. On the other hand, it looks out of place among the older posable Rider figures. Personally, I love the new size.

All of Faiz’s weapons are included in this set, which includes the Faiz Phone Blaster (no, it doesn’t transform), Faiz Shot, Faiz Pointer (doesn’t combine with Blaster), and Faiz Edge. The Faiz Phone Blaster, Shot, and Pointer are all oversized so it looks better when Faiz is using them. I don’t have much problems with that but the Faiz shot does lack detail for something so oversized. All of the weapons are made out of soft PVC, and this causes the Faiz Edge to warp easily. The PVC is fine for all the other weapons though.

The Autovajin is a bike that transforms into a robot. In bike mode, the Autovajin is a good looking dirt bike. It’s got some engine details and has “Smart Brain Motors” and “SB-555V” clearly printed on it. A kick stand allows it to stay upright with ease. Kamen Rider Faiz rides well on it and for a bike that transforms into a robot, it looks very sleek. The transformation is fairly involved and I would say it’s complexity is about the same as any similar sized Transformers (think Armada Red Alert or Car Robots JRX Trains). In robot mode, Autovajin is a head taller than Faiz. Although it does have joints at the hips and knees, they are actually used for the transformation and when they are bent, it’s very difficult to keep Autovajin standing. The functional joints are the swievel joints at the neck and shoulders. Even though it’s basically a brick in robot mode, Autovajin looks reasonably good and looks better than many Transformers in my opinion. There are even some diecast on the Autovajin. They are located on the shoulders and the hinge that moves the rear wheel during the transformation. I really like the Autovajin, especially in bike mode, and about the only thing I wish it had is some sort of readout between the handle bars.

As far as bad points are concerned, besides the soft Faiz Edge I’ve already mentioned, the only other one I can think of is the lack of red outline on all the “Phi” signs present on the weapons, belt, and Autovajin. As you can see in the pictures they are all just a solid yellow circle without the red outline. Other than that, I like this set even more than any of the excellent Ryuki R&M sets. In fact, for me this might even get the Toy of the Year over Dancougar and MMM Strike Gundam (I have both).

In conclusion, if you liked the Ryuki R&M sets and don’t mind the larger size of this set, I would highly recommend that you pick it up. I hope there are going to be more of these S-RHF sets released this year.

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