Sentinel’s Baikanfu had a lot of hype and expectations leading up to its release. Does this product meet the mark? Let’s see!
Price: Approx. $355
Release Date: Aug. 2017
Item Height: Rom: 3.5″ Kenryu 6.75″ Baikanfu: 10.5″
Item Weight: Rom: 0.0 lbs Kenryu: .02 lbs Baikanfu: 1.1 lbs Combined: 1.3 lbs
WHERE TO BUY: D4Toys
Sentinel is closing out this summer with one of its big guns in the start of their “BARI-ATION” sub line under Metamor-force with Baikanfu. As one of the lead mecha from the “Machine Robo” series, this was a piece that really got a lot of eyes on it and excitement built the second it was announced. In the following paragraphs I’ll go ahead and give a rundown on Sentinel’s Baikanfu as well as my overall thoughts, and I’d love to read your thoughts on it in the comments section below.
Right out of the box, it’s just a pretty piece to look at. Really bright colors and good overall paint application really make all three components (Rom Stol, Kenru, and Baikanfu) really pop. I also like that on Kenryu and Baikanfu, that there was a great job done of covering up areas that have been gapped on previous toy versions when not filled with the preceding character (as shown in the video, this piece uses a Russian-nesting-doll style to combine the three.) My biggest gripe here is with Rom Stol’s shoulders not being able to be pressed in all of the way for the shoulders to meet the actual body leaving noticeable gaps showing the extension pegs (which are there for combination purposes.) I also wish that Kenryu’s head sculpt was slavish to the source as I don’t really like their take on it. Overall though, they are the best looking iterations of these characters to-date toy-wise.
Where things get a bit more sketchy is the articulation. Rom Stol is absolutely fantastic with as many or more articulation points than most high-end standalone figures and poses well. Kenryu is more mediocre but really the only thing that I would say its significantly missing is a waist swivel. Baikanfu on the other hand is just all over the place with everything above the waist being incredible while below is really lacking, particularly in having very limited thigh swivel on its own and none when combined. As the combined form (and by default Baikanfu itself) is blatantly what they majority of collectors would be purchasing this for, I don’t understand why he was given such sub par lower body articulation, particularly since Sentinel as a whole is renowned for having very dynamic articulation and being able to have their products displayed literally like no others.
Accessory-wise, this set comes with quite a bit. As pictured in the gallery, Rom, Kenryu, and Baikanfu all come with a great variety of hands as well as Kenro/Nagase swords and the Shield of justice for the appropriate forms. As stated in the video, something needs to be said for their decision to use pegging to change out the hands versus balljoints, as it’s much more easy to change them out,
Overall, this is a piece with more ups than downs, but the downs are pretty significant particularly at the high price.
Overall Score: 7.0/10 – Overall, Sentinel’s Baikanfu is almost a victim of its own brand in that Dancouga set the bar very extremely high in what’s to be expected in their “big” transforming/combining releases. Baikanfu looks beautiful and has an amazing display presence but the functionality, very specifically in Baikanfu’s legs really leaves something to be desired. It not having thigh swivel really hampers even the display value in terms of having a correct look particularly in more dynamic poses. It’s really unfortunate,
because the articulation from the waist up is absolutely sublime. These gripes also pile onto the fact that it’s a by-and-large plastic piece at a relatively high price and add up to said price being extremely hard to justify.
Another thing should definitely be noted is that the previously released Metamor-Force Dancouga has been mentioned and for anyone who’s collected it as well, there’s a nature “comparison” of sorts in terms of quality, however it’s pretty foolish even on my behalf to directly compare them from an engineering standpoint as Dancouga by design is majorly comprised of the core bot (Big Moth) in combined mode really only adding the Lieger and Cougar as alternate feet while Eagle Fighter makes an alternate head. Nearly 100% of that robots articulation is comprised of that singular bot (realistically only ankle movement is added with the alternate feet as the neck which controls head movement is part of Big Moth as well) while on a more intricate combiner like Baikanfu there’s blatantly more to take into account while mapping out articulation and for that reason, I’d say that Baikanfu is actually the more impressive piece. In fact, if it had thigh swivel while combined, I’d call it undisputedly better.
Check out the gallery below, and make sure to orders yours at D4Toys.