You probably already know that I like to question people and since the previous interview with Pop Culture Shock went really well I thought about interviewing another company. I thought long and hard and finally figured out which company/artist/person was next. This particular company also makes game related statues but no Capcom. They made the Sonics I already reviewed and a lot more that’s on my to-do list. Of course, these will be reviewed after my last exam. Still have to do 2. Hence the fact that I haven’t posted anything for a while. Bugger…
Anyhow, this time, it’s First 4 Figures their turn!

First of all, we thank F4F for their time. We of DIMIC really appreciate it. Now, on to the questions:

Could you tell us a little bit about yourself? We’d love to know where you live, some of your general interests, hobbies, pets, …
Well…first thing to mention is that I’m female. Quite a few people get confused by my name Kanako – it’s Japanese – and think I’m a guy. I look after the First 4 Figures website and customer service. I live in China near the factories so I can spend time there to check on QC. I love reading, watching films and… gaming of course! I also have a 14 year old Jack Russell called Victor who likes to guard the flat by licking everyone he sees.

We like quotes. What’s your favorite quote?
“All work and no play makes Kanako a dull girl” – Kanako 2011

Are you also gamers? If so, what’s your favorite console of all time? Got any favorite game(s)? (genres are also a-ok)
We’re all about games here for sure. Fondest memories come on the PC, GC and N64. Too many favorite games, but recently have loved Twilight Princess, the Metroid Primes, Red Dead Redemption, Mass Effect, Fall Out 3 etc. Crysis 2 was a blast and I’ve got LA Noire for next on my list and can’t wait to be reliving Ocarina of Time on the 3DS soon.

We are quite the collectors and if we’d own a shop or something, it only would get worse… So, do you collect yourself? Anything goes.
I love those little cats that you get with the paws up by their ear.
(editors note: they’re called Maneki Neko, literally “Beckoning Cat”
also known as Welcoming Cat, Lucky Cat, Money cat or Fortune Cat)

Mario or Sonic? … Or Peach?
All!

What came first: gaming/collecting or sculpting?
Gaming.

How did it all started? And by all we mean all those nice statues that we can buy…
Little known fact was that First 4 Figures was made about 10 years or so ago originally as a company that would import anime toys into the UK as we saw a market for that. That didn’t really take off so we thought – let’s create our own products!

How big is the company now? How many employers? We don’t count freelance… or maybe we do. Your choice whether to include them or not.
Including freelance, we’ve about 10 people. We have steady freelancers that are practically part of the F4F family.

What was the really first statue ever made? And what was the first F4F statue that you ever made?
WWE statues. Long time ago.

Having a job without fun isn’t really that much fun… So, what was the most fun and/or satisfying statue that you ever made?
I can tell you the most UNfun statue we made. And that was the Fierce Deity Link. We had a nightmare getting him made – some factory horror stories you don’t want to hear as it’s too fresh in my mind. We made a conscious decision right after that to move completely to China in order to be near the factories (this was 5 years ago or so. We were living in the UK at the time). From then onwards, we upped our game, switched factories and watch everything now like hawks to ensure quality. Hopefully everyone can see the leap in QC from Fierce Deity Link to Skill Kid. I really wish we could revisit Fierce Deity Link some day in the future – maybe as a one off ¼ scale version but not sure it’s very likely.

We got a lot of favorite statues from you guys. What’s your favorite released statue?
Phazon Suit – hands down. Really proud of her. Followed closely by Wolf Link and Midna and Super Sonic. However, I can assure you that the next in our Twilight Princess line will blow everything else we’ve made to date out of the water. And I mean SKY HIGH out of the water. It’s almost 2 years in the making but we are on the home stretch.
(editors note: Oh my!!)

You’ve announced Sonic the Hedgehog. What are you looking forward to the most?
Small Vinyl Figures, Large Collectibles Statues or Both? Heh (yeah, we know that the license for the vinyl’s expired, just curious)

Large collectible statues – and we may have a few special things planned for this line.

Why only two extra colors of Link? Where’s the purple? No purple…
Yes, we also know that the red and blue were extra outfits in the Ocarina of Time game, but adding purple would also made it nice as a setup: Four Swords

Hahah, not sure we’ll be going there!

We also had two questions that got answered when their newsletter aired last week.
These were the questions:

Are you really considering increasing the edition sizes on Dark Link and Wolf Link & Midna?

Due to overwhelming demand, we have decided to increase the exclusive edition size for Dark Link to 725 units from 500. The first 500 units of the exclusive edition will come with silver foil wording (like our Zant statue). Units 501-725 and the regular version will all come with the white wording.

Wolf Link and Midna Exclusive’s edition size has increased to 500 units from 350 units. The first 350 units of the exclusive edition will come with an additional card that will have the sculptor’s signature on it. Units 351-500 and the regular version will not come with this.

(editors note: as a avid collector myself, I kinda hate F4F for doing this… I advised them to use TBD for the regulars and an increase in ES for the exclusive in the future instead of increasing something that already went online for pre-order…)

Also, any updates for us European fans? Like, is Metal Sonic coming to Europe?

We are super excited to let you know that we’ve renewed our Sonic the Hedgehog resin license to create even more exciting product in our classic range. We are also really happy to say that our new license also includes Modern Sonic as well! This is a worldwide license which means that we are re-launching our classic Metal Sonic statue for our European and Australasia customers. Order in confidence!

Thanks again for your time. And keep those statues coming!