Saturday, January 30, 2010

Bioshock 2: Big Sister & Little Sister Figure(s) Review

Although I don't own many video games, I've got to say that Bioshock is one of those first-person shooters that have a really catchy storyline (Halo and Half-Life included).  It's one of those games that I can't stop playing over and over again.  With the upcoming release of the sequel to the original Bioshock, I proudly present a review of NECA's "Big Sister & Little Sister" action figures.

Flavor Text: 

"Big Sisters are Rapture's fiercest predators.  Despite being covered in armor they possess deadly agility and can strike from anywhere.  Charged with protecting Little Sisters, Big Sisters keep an eye on all of the ADAM in Rapture and punish anyone that disrupts the balance.  Able to throw objects telekinetically, leap off walls for powerful melee blows, throw fireballs, execute devastating charge attacks and even extract ADAM directly from living Splicers, Big Sisters are the worst nightmare of anyone unlucky enough to draw their ire.

Little Sisters are young girls who have had ADAM producing slugs implanted into their bodies, enabling them to drink the blood of dead Splicers and extract usable ADAM from it.  This makes them incredibly valuable in Rapture, where Splicers crave ADAM enough to kill for it.  Because of this they are accompanied at all times by Big Daddies, hulking protectors in diving suits who will defend Little Sisters to the death.  Little Sisters are driven mad by their constant exposure to substance ADAM but are not beyond redemption, in the right hands they can find salvation and be turned back into the innocent little girls they once were."

The Good:

  • The Big Sister (BS) has an impressive 16 POINTS OF ARTICULATION: swivel head, ball-hinged shoulders, ball-hinged elbows, quasi ball-hinged wrists, ab-crunch joint, swivel legs, ball-jointed thighs, hinged knees, and ball-jointed ankles.
  • We finally get a Little Sister (LS)!  She has an amazing 10 POINTS OF ARTICULATION: ball-jointed neck, ball-jointed shoulders, hinged elbows, ab-crunch joint, swivel legs, and hinged knees.
  • Accessory-wise, the Big Sister comes with a removable canister with "Little Sister cage".  The Little Sister comes with her trademark "ADAM harvesting tool".
  • The package design by NECA is similar to the previously released Big Daddy "Sneak Preview" figure but with slight differences.  The "Bioshock 2" logo is displayed prominently on the front, off-center.  There's also a silver-colored sticker labeled "Toysrus Exclusive" near the upper right corner.  The backdrop of the figures portray a watery background, most likely the seas of Rapture.  The right-side of the package grandly displays the "deep sea diving" Big Sister's face and the eerily-cute Little Sister's face as well.  Although the size of the clamshell packaging is wider than usual (to accommodate both figures), it's surprisingly a lot thinner and compact.
  • If you look carefully examine the BS's canister, you'll notice several different pictures: several different types of fish and one BS holding the hands of two LS.
  • NECA is well-known for their great attention to detail, and their sculpt of the BS is no exception.  The minute details on the "diver suit" areas of BS are just phenomenal.  The leather straps with the metal belt buckles wrapped all around BS's slender feminine body and her legs are also sculpted with an overload of details.  Her right arm sports a "harpoon"-type weapon whereas her left arm has an over-sized "ADAM" harvesting tool.
  • This time around, I had a far easier time inserting the BS's slender canister into her back.  Due to the large "Little Sister cage" with the ribbons decorated all around it, I worried that it would snap in two.  Just becareful when you shove in the canister.  You've been warned.
  • The paint application is a lot better than NECA's usual fare.  I only noticed a few out of place: the red holes bleeding out onto the BS's diving suit mask, and a splotch of conspicuous white paint on her right backside (right next to the canister indentation).

The Bad:

  • It really is unfortunate that NECA decided to go with the "swivel head" articulation.  It would've been better if they went with the "ball-jointed neck" route.  This would've given the BS a lot more potential poses.
  • Although the BS has an ab-crunch joint (which most definitely enhances the overall figure), I wish NECA also included a "swivel waist" joint.  It just makes sense, at least to me to include the most basic articulation.
  • The lack of depth in the BS's "eye-hole" bothers me quite a bit.  The applied red paint further cheapens the overall look of an otherwise excellent figure.  If NECA's sculptors hollowed out (scooped out) the "eye-hole" area a little bit and placed a translucent piece of red plastic (look at NECA's previously-released excellent Dead Space figure) inside, I think it would've made their BS even greater.
  • Probably because of the thinly sculpted arms, the BS couldn't bend them completely at a 90 degree angle.  It's a little irritating for collectors like me, especially since I like to pose them a lot.  However, I understand the issues NECA would've had to face.
  • There were more than a few problems regarding the LS.  Paint application was a problem: even before I removed the figure from its packaging, I noticed a big white dot on the LS's right side of her head.  If you examine both sides of her head, you'll notice the hair sculpt continues until it reaches the back of her ears.  Unfortunately, the paint application stops a bit too early.  There's also a little "creative" paint application near the LS's forehead on the left side.  The LS's pre-posed hands have a really hard time holding onto her "ADAM harvesting tool".  I don't understand how this could've happened.  
  • It would've been nice if the LS was given "swivel wrists" and perhaps "hinged ankles" articulation.
  • There's a glaring inaccuracy regarding the paint application for the LS's "ADAM harvesting tool".  For some reason the tube is colored brown, when it should be glowing pinkish-red.

The Ugly:

  • Nothing ugly here, folks.

Since these figures are a "Toysrus Exclusive," you will only find these at Toysrus for $19.99 (price doesn't include S&H and tax).  Although their shipping took a day or two longer than was expected, it arrived without any other problems.  The box it was shipped in is approximately the same size as the clamshell packaging, so there were no packing materials inside the box.  The clamshell was intact (just a few minor scratches) and the figures weren't broken.  I haven't seen these online elsewhere, so Toysrus is your best bet to snag one of these.


Although there are problems with these figures, NECA has continued to impress me with their Bioshock 2 line.  The level of quality and care is apparent and will have the most appeal with adult collectors.  I eagerly look forward to the rest of NECA's Bioshock 2 lineup. 


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