"Ichiban Kuji Dragon Ball EX Tenka Wakeme Battle!!" is set to start its progressive release across Japan from Saturday, August 31st. We spoke with the project's leader, who gave us insight into the lineup selection process and shared with us his passion for Dragon Ball!
In Part 1, we asked him about the "Ichiban Kuji Dragon Ball EX" series while discussing some of its previous releases. Check it out the Related Articles section!
In Part 2, we take a deep dive into the new release, "Tenka Wakeme Battle!!", and R. Hei tells us about all the care and attention that went into its production!
——What's the most exciting part of the new release?
I think it's definitely the prospect of assembling both Vegeta and Nappa, who are the A and B Prizes for the MASTERLISE figure series respectively.
Prize A: Vegeta & Prize B: Nappa!
Of course, there's already a wide variety of Vegeta figures available, but, certainly in recent years, there haven't been many that recreated him as he was when he attacked Earth—especially not in this size.
——What were some key aspects of the A & B Prizes you focused on during the design process?
We struggled with whether or not to make them with their Scouters attached, but in the end, we arrived at the simplest solution: "Why not both?!"
As a result, we created an attachable Scouter! We decided it would be best to leave it up to the fans who get their hands on one to decide the look of their figure!
A & B Prizes
Plus, a fierce-looking Nappa is the "Last One" Prize this time around, and he comes with a bonus attachable hair part, allowing you to recreate his youthful looks! Actually, I had the idea for this a few years ago when I was the project leader for the snack-toys series "DRAGON BALL ADVERGE", but now I've finally been able to create a suitably large version!
R. Hei's previous project:
DRAGON BALL ADVERGE 8 - Nappa
The attachable hair rests snuggly on Nappa's head, so actually, for those lucky enough to get their hands on both the "Last One" and the B Prizes, you'll be able to give the B Prize a fresh, youthful look too.
With hair and Scouter attachments:
"Last One" Prize Nappa
——When the lineup was announced, which item received the most attention from fans?
There was definitely a lot of interest in the Vegeta and Nappa I just mentioned, but I dare say the biggest reaction was to the Nappa & Goku figure, which is the F Prize for DRAGON ARCHIVES. It's a pretty unique item, so I was a bit worried fans would take one look and think, "Huh?", but thankfully the response has been super positive. *laughs*
"Dragon Ball" Tale 225
It couldn't possibly be that scene?!
Such unbelievable attention to detail!
——Were there any items that were a particular challenge to make?
It might sound a little mundane, but the hardest part of the process was getting the "Goku standing on Nappa scene" down to size. The scene relies so heavily on perspective to work that when it came to recreating it, we tried altering Goku's shape and tested all kinds of combinations of sizes for Goku and Nappa to get it just right. We spent more time in the prototype stage with this figure than we have for any other in the series so far.
"Dragon Ball" Tale 224
Even the Goku on Nappa's head is incredible!
His expression from his clash with Nappa is pitch-perfect!
I must admit that when I was testing various sizes of Goku to see how they looked atop different sizes of Nappa's head over and over, a few times I did catch myself thinking, "What the hell has my life come to?!" *laughs* But I'm happy to say that the sense of satisfaction I got when the process was finally over made it all worthwhile!
The extreme angle that emerged after the development phase
*Support included with product.
——Is there an item that you feel particularly attached to?
Honestly, all of them. I can't wait to get the whole lineup and put them on display in my house. But since you've been kind enough to listen to me talk all about figures today, I guess I should narrow it down a little. If I had to choose, I'd say the "Mafu-ba Seal Towel" and "Red Ribbon Army Gift Towel" Art Towels are my favorites!
Mafu-ba Seal Towel (left)
Red Ribbon Army Gift Towel (right)
Towels are a regular feature in this series, but every time we make one, we always work with the goal of coming up with something that has never been done before. I think with these two new towels we were able to create really memorable designs that can serve as conversation starters with your friends, whether you use them to dry off while playing sports or while relaxing at a hot spring hotel.
——Finally, can you give a message to all the fans out there awaiting the new release?
Thanks to everyone's support, we've made it to the 4th release in the series! Once again, I'm super pleased with the lineup we've got ready! Throughout the project, I adopted Goku's mindset of "Even if my body is broken, there's no way I'll die!", so if any fans out there who, just like Vegeta, think that's "My sort of attitude!", are kind enough to try their luck and take a shot at adding the items in this release to their collection, I'd be completely over the moon! Once again, thank you so much, everyone!
"Dragon Ball" Tale 229
By the way, this is more of a personal announcement, but after this release I'll be stepping down as project leader. I've made sure to convey the spirit of the series as well as share the exciting ideas I have for future releases with the next project leader. I'm confident that the Ichiban Kuji Dragon Ball EX series will keep moving onwards and upwards! Thanks for everything!
Every item in the "Ichiban Kuji Dragon Ball EX Tenka Wakeme Battle!!" was crafted with love and attention! Everyone be sure to add them to your collection!
*All comic images are from the Japanese version.
*Depending on the store, sales may end prematurely, or the sale period may differ. Sales will continue while stocks last.
*The images shown above may not be representative of the final products.
*The products listed in this article are subject to change without prior notice.
*"Ichiban Kuji" & "Last One" are registered trademarks.
This site includes machine-translated texts. Please be aware that you might find some unusual expressions that are difficult to understand.