One of the problems I've had with toys is, at times, especially in indie spheres, things can take an aggressive turn toward "I've got that." Quality, value, and niftiness can only take you so far after a few years of collecting a line of new colorways, even if there are some really neat ones like the Skeleden Ullcroth Mutation. The real genius in the Onell Design Glyos figure is how, at times, they can take a figure you've bought and sell you another one with a wholly new perspective, at no extra cost. Glow-in-the-dark figures absorb much of the sculpted detail, leaving you to focus on the action feature and its general form. Clear figures give you a look at the guts. But one of the more interesting features - the panel lines - were phased out due to costs. And now, we had them brought back for a special pair of Skeledens, where the savings of the rising middle class in China are also being passed along to you. This one was $18 - panel line-free versions were about $12. The added paint lines are applied with an eye toward perfection, but it also raised the cost by 50%. Seeing where you'll spend money is another great way to gain perspective.
As with before, you get 23 pieces. That's 13 pieces of Pheyden, and 10 Skeleden upgrade parts.
Being shown just how good a figure you've got may not be worth extra money, but in this case I'll make an exception. Standard Skeleden was a great figure - made of two colors of plastic, this panel line-free figure had a nifty bony color which, without paint, showed the various cracks and ridges quite nicely. The Ullcroth, though, is like a page of comic art given life. The arms are molded in bone color, but for some reason painted with a pink part for the biceps and elbow, bone paint on the shoulder, and panel lines over everything else. That seems excessive, but that's why it's $18. You also get brown patches on the hands and feet, in addition to the brown panel lines. The head is a departure in that it's all bone, with panel lines, rather than being half "fleshy color" like the earlier versions. It feels like a different figure, from a different era, all thanks to a little more paint and a lot more work applying said paint.
I'm sure there was a reason they added bone joints to the "Skeleden" arms, but I don't know what it is. The bone plastic underneath looked good, and the bone color does stand out as being different from the plastic - a frequent problem on mass-produced mainstream toys. Getting white to match white is not easy.
The spare body parts get the same treatment. The standard Pheyden head and shoulders have dark brown patches, as well as light brown panel lines. Each leg has the lining as well. It's no slouch. Unsurprisingly the axe weapon really shines with this new deco, as does the knee armor, which now greatly highlights the many faces and sculpted bits on each. The amount of extra stuff you can now see is pretty spectacular, and the weapon seems like an entirely new piece. It's nice. Even the chest armor has matching paneling and red eyes, resulting in more faces on one figure than you'll get from most.
The Skeleden figure is a good one, and this paint job brings out its best. And it also costs a lot more. That's the sort of thing I get hung up on, but it's the reality of the toy business in 2015. Even if you're using the same molds that were paid off a while ago, raw materials and freight aren't free. The figure didn't sell out in its initial launch, which is a mixed blessing. It's good, because that means you could get it. On the other hand, fast sell-outs usually indicate revenue for future product development, so hopefully we'll see this kind of attention on few - very few - figures because it is impressive. I don't think I could do a whole shelf of them, but picking and choosing does make some lines more interesting because spending all your time completing and curating does take away from enjoying.
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