Sunday, January 30, 2011

Dead Space 2: Isaac Clarke Action Figure

Flavor Text:

"Isaac Clarke:

Three years ago, CEC engineer Isaac Clarke barely survived a virulent outbreak aboard the USG Ishimura that twisted the dead into mindless killing machines. Now it's happening again, this time on a metropolis orbiting Saturn known as the "Sprawl". Isaac fights to survive as his mind deteriorates and the space station descends into madness and chaos."


I've played the first "Dead Space" many times, but I haven't played "Dead Space 2" yet (will try to this weekend), but from the images I've seen online, this Isaac Clarke in the Advanced Suit looks accurate.

As I removed Isaac from the clamshell packaging, I noticed the texture of the figure to be different; it was because NECA incorporated rubbery (plastic) pieces all over Isaac's body. In hindsight, this was a nice move since the jutting pieces of Isaac's sleek armored Advanced Suit might have caused some pain for collectors' [fingers] who like to pose their figures in all sorts of positions. Also, these rubbery pieces would less likely break off during shipment.

Isaac's pre-posed right hand grip is now tighter, allowing him to hold his trusty Plasma Cutter better. The previous Isaac Clarke figures (from the first Dead Space) had a bit too much wiggle room causing some annoyance for collectors as Isaac's weapon constantly fell through. Even with this improvement, I noticed that Isaac still has some problems holding the Plasma Cutter in place (it shifts making it look like Isaac is holding onto it by a thread).

An interesting and most welcome change is the soles of Isaac's boots no longer have the plain and boring "hollowed out" area with the "NECA 20XX Made in China" stamp (that stamp is now placed less noticeably on the back of Isaac's right boot).  Instead, we have detailed soles of Isaac's boots (the right boot has a bit more blood than the left one)!

There are some minor things about this figure (I'm somewhat of a stickler when it comes to details) that I feel need mentioning. For instance, the "light up" feature with the LED lights is a really cool idea (we've seen it done before), but all I see is just the bright white light (just like the SDCC Isaac Clarke Unitology outfit exclusive); and not the "aqua" color.  (**NOTE: The photos show the "aqua" color, but this is not the case when you view this in person**).

I would've preferred to have the "eye-holes" of the mask and RIG painted "greenish-blue" instead. With the LED feature, the painted stasis meter (on the immediate right of the RIG) looks really out of place. While I do appreciate having the RIG with the sculpted "bars" (I really do), I feel the same should've been done for the stasis meter as well. The stasis meter looks so... plain without it. A real minor thing to note is the absence of articulated "booster flaps" around Isaac's shoulders (rather they're sculpted on the backs of his shoulders).

* On a side note, I would love to see NECA release another Advanced Suit Isaac figure with an alternate unmasked head and in "clean" armor, possibly for this year's San Diego Comic Con.  That would really be awesome.*


Isaac has articulation in the: swivel neck, ball-jointed shoulders, ball-jointed elbows, ball-jointed wrists, swivel waist, swivel/hinged hips, swivel thighs, ball-jointed knees, and ball-jointed ankles.

Unlike NECA's usual fare, Advanced Suit Isaac doesn't seem to have the full range of motion from his ball-jointed neck; he's stuck with the swivel motion. The previous Isaac Clarke figures (from the first Dead Space collection) had ball-jointed necks, allowing for more head movement.

The ball-jointed waist wasn't incorporated into Advanced Suit Isaac either, most likely due to the cost of tooling. Again, the previous Isaac Clarke in his mining RIG had that articulation.

However, with all that aside, this is still a highly-articulated figure that NECA tends to produce from time to time. I would love to see more articulated figures from them.

Paint Application:

From the prototype pictures of Isaac, the colors looked a little too bright. Thankfully, this is not the case with the actual released product. The bright colors have been toned down quite a bit, just enough so that it's no longer a distraction.

Interestingly, this sleek Advanced Suit has seen its share of "wear-and-tear" due to the "dirt marks" applied all over his body. There are also generous amounts of blood splattered over Isaac's armor as well. This time around, NECA got it right with both the color and blood "splat" design; it no longer looks like "ketchup stains" (e.g. The Licker figure from the Resident Evil Series 2 line).


Like his previous plastic reincarnation (from Dead Space), this Isaac comes with only one accessory: the Plasma Cutter. What's really great about this particular Plasma Cutter is that it has a "swivel" feature just like in the video game! If you peek in front of the Plasma Cutter, you'll see the "blue-white" color (laser beam) painted on! While I was hoping for more accessories, the surprising addition of the "swivel" feature of the Plasma Cutter kind of makes up for it.


As with most of their recent offerings, NECA has reduced the amount of space in their clamshell packaging (most likely to save both money and space), which works quite well. The background design of the packaging is nice, no doubt taken from the video game cover of "Dead Space 2". However, the background design from the first "Dead Space" action figure packaging with the shadows of the incoming Necromorphs is no doubt still the best package design.

Interestingly, the slightly enlarged photo of Isaac at the bottom right of the packaging shows him with his trusty Plasma Cutter (from the first Dead Space video game).


I pre-ordered Isaac Clarke through CornerStoreComics for a total of $40.14 (this also included a Necromorph figure) and from an eBay seller (also purchased together with the Necromorph) for $34.42.

The Good:

* The highly anticipated Isaac Clarke finally makes his appearance in plastic form!
* Extremely detailed (Advanced Suit) Isaac figure!
* Highly articulated.
* Video game accurate sculpt.

The Bad:

* Missing some minor attention to detail (not a bad thing, but didn't have any other place to put this).
* Color of LED feature.
* One accessory.

The Ugly:

* The long wait it took to finally get this figure in my grubby hands!


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