I once owned the 1/35 Lancelot model kit from Bandai, but have since sold it, therefore being deprived of everyone’s favorite titular Knightmare Frame from Code Geass. The Robot Damashii release brought a fresh update to the mech design, and wasn’t short on included figure features and accessories.
My one gripe with these Robot Spirits figures is how overpriced they generally are. I have trouble paying excess of $40 USD for general mass-produced action figures, no matter how much better the quality has gotten in recent years. As such, I waited patiently for the Knight of Seven’s faithful machine until I got a fair deal at Anime Expo last year. Sadly, I’ve yet to see a good deal on the Guren, so the best I can do here is throw Lancelot in with his fellow Rounds.
This updated Robot Damashii version of the Knightmare is significantly streamlined and much more angular than its predecessor figure from Bandai’s In Action!! Offshoot line, which was basically the pre-Robot Damashii lineup for a lot of non-Gundam figures back in the day. (View a direct comparison of the figures here).
Factspheres! Finally a figure that includes actual pop-up ones; yes it’s a useless gimmick much like opening cockpits but I’ve always wanted to see a functional version of this feature, good on Bandai for finally making it happen.
I think my only gripe with this thing’s range of movement is at the ankles – it needs some HG 00 Gundam-type joints there to allow it to bend sideways a bit more. Other than that, I’m pleased to see that we’re getting some more advanced joint mechanics on these figures, in form of some split armor-sliding near the elbows.
Weapons and accessories-wise, this guy comes with a lot of stuff. I can’t believe they cared enough to include the open-version Slash Harkens that were used in like one or two episodes tops. To the best of my memory Suzaku only ever deployed these during the Lancelot’s introduction episode when he didn’t have any other weapons. They’re swap-out pieces for the wrist guards, but include a fair bit of detail all the same.
The MVS Sword sheaths are detachable, and unfortunately tend to fall of during handling often. Also of note is that this figure (curiously) has no opening cockpit – guess they traded out that gimmick for the Factspheres.
The swords are generally very easy to swing around – they plug into the hands via friction fits, but due to the larger pommels they won’t slide out and the hand-to-wrist connection is very solid. Definitely get the most play value here.
Speaking of hands, you get quite a bit to choose from here. I like how they even went out of their way to include slightly different options for having the wrist tilted very far forward, so Lancelot could in essence stab with the swords.
For some strange reason my figure’s right open palm hand came missing half its pinky…I’m pretty sure it was like this from factory and I wasn’t the one who screwed it up.
The V.A.R.I.S. (Variable Ammunition Repulsion Impact Spitfire) Rifle is a bit of a parts-former, in contrast with its slide-out counterpart from the anime. The main section with the handle and butt are foldable for storage mode, while the extended barrel tip is an entirely different piece that’s swapped out for firing mode.
Unfortunately, this is really the prime reason I’m so not okay with paying the price for these lower-end figures. I could do a better job on this figure if it were a model kit when it comes to piece and paint finish. The nubs (most glaring on the weapons) hurt me inside.
I suppose I could sand and paint these all away (and I almost did) but ultimately decided it wasn’t worth the hassle when it’s supposed to be a complete figure in the first place and that I’ll be selling it back off later anyway.
Blaze Luminous – because physical shields are so overrated.
Only one of these is included, and it goes on in the traditional fashion with removing the centerpiece of the wrist guard to sandwich the clear plastic in place. I’m actually pretty impressed with how well it emulates the unique look of the shields in-series.
And of course, some of essential Knightmare gear – Slash Harkens. Four sets of fixed Harkens are included, with all the same length in wire. Given that the tips themselves aren’t heavy in the least, the wires hold them up well and offer just as much bend as you’d expect, meaning you can get as crazy as you want.
The Harkens on the thighs are significantly more hassle-free than the ones on the wrists, just because all you have to do is pop put the stationary pieces and pop in the wire-attached ones and be done with it. The wrist bits require quite a few steps of piece-swapping.
I can finally do this scene! Promoted to high hell with the Robot Damashii Gawain, even though it was reasonably a very small scene from the anime that wasn’t even that particularly memorable.
Lancelot’s a solid figure – I think at this point it’s the best version available of the original Frame – all the upgraded variants like Albion and Conquista notwithstanding. It certainly comes with more accessories than it can use at once (actually…it probably can use them all, but not in good taste at least), but general build quality on these items isn’t particularly up to par. For what you pay, I’d expect a little more detail and some better paint clean-up, but at least they have the articulation and accuracy departments down well.