The Four Horsemen are smart - they have a small loyal audience that usually doesn't complain, and are generally cool buying the same figure repainted a few times over. Given the limited edition nature of these figures, it's a necessity. The Ophidian Squad Soldier is one of six (so far) versions of this mold - and the fully-painted main characters, the updates of the original Adam Power/Lord Power, finally go on sale today.
Available in black, white, grey, tan, red, and now blue, this figure looks more than a little like Cobra Commander - this builds in a ton of charm. The silver mask looks wonderful up close, and the red triangle is a great abstract Cobra symbol. The blue doesn't quite match Mr. Commander, but it gives you a visual reminder of what his pajamas might look like. As with the other releases, it has 15 points of articulation and at each one, you can pop him apart and swap elements with other Power Soldiers and many Glyos-compatible figures. The wrists and ankles use a very small mini Glyos joint so far only used in Power Lords and a few Outer Space Men, and the end result is a surprisingly robust figure - it's not something that really lends itself to army building, but it certainly looks cool. The black belt blends right in to the dark blue plastic, but hey - another fully-painted Power Soldier in blue gear is supposedly still coming.
The blue accessories aren't an exact match for the body plastic, but it's close - it's weird. A contrasting color would have been nice, like white, or even silver. The detail sort of gets absorbed by the figure's gripping hands, and the accessories fit quite nicely in them. All the parts fit together well. This may seem like a non-compliment, but when you have any sort of configurable figure the tolerance levels are hugely important - some robots in disguises can have difficulty massaging parts and panels in place, so getting something like this with a good range of movement and no real problems standing or sitting is almost miraculous.
I really love the look of this one - the visor color is wonderful, and I'm dying to have vehicles for him. Sadly the modern toy market hasn't yet cracked how to do a really good "indie" vehicle, with a few items some would accept as a vehicle strike me as a larger vinyl figure. I guess Star Wars or G.I. Joe vehicles will have to do. This guy would make a Hell of a good Cobra Swamp Viper.
While this batch of figures took an exceptional amount of time to make it to 16bit.com Labs, the figure is quite good - so if you can be patient for your order to the tune of more than a couple of weeks, this is a quality action figure with a seemingly small potential collector base. Even the earlier, scarcer releases are still pretty cheap - so if you are late to the party and reading this in the future, I'd suggest checking eBay for someone dumping a collection. It's a cult line to be sure, but there's no denying that the engineering on this figure is quite good and worth the ten bucks. If you're willing to wait for the box, that is.
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