I’ve already posted the first volume of this series so now it’s time to discuss the second one! Unlink the first volume, this one has some of Square’s characters as well. Getting more interesting for you Final Fantasy fans?

I usually type some kind of intro with information on the item(s) but because I’m feeling lazy today (and since the following apply for second volume as well) let’s just quote me! Sounds like a lot of fun, yes?

There are two (three actually) different versions; in blind packages (boxes) and blisters. The blind package is also divided into 2 different versions; the ‘regular’ color edition and the special and extremely rare ‘black and white’ edition. Never seen the last in real life though.
Besides the package, there are also several differences between the two versions. Perhaps the biggest difference is that you have to put the figures together yourself if you buy the boxed version, while the blister ones are already assembled. The next big difference is the fact that the blister volume holds only 3 figures (the good guys) while the box volume holds 6 (3 good guys and 3 bad).
A smaller, but also noticeable, difference is that the box version is far better painted than the ones in blister. All the more reasons for me to discuss the boxed version. Not to mention that I only have these…

The package is just a carton box that hold one figure, its parts separately wrapped in plastic. I can tell you, that was a bunch of plastic we needed to throw away. So, since you have to put the figures together yourself, lets take a look at the ‘manual’… and look again… and again… Oh, the manuals are included but they’re entirely in Japanese/Chinese something but luckily, the manufacturers had the bright idea to include a picture with arrows to point out which piece goes where. Lucky us. I would show you a picture of the boxes and manuals, but I don’t have them anymore.
And a while later you sit there, staring at a piece. And staring at the hole it has to go to. And you notice that something isn’t right there.
Some pieces just really don’t fit. Some could never fit. So what does every sensible person do then? Yes, they take out a knife and carefully begin to cut away plastic so that it will fit eventually.
But all frustrations aside, the look when the entire volume is put together, it’s well worth it. The paint job is sublime and the details are superb! Considering that they are trading arts of course. The quality is nothing compared to PFs for instance. The figures height range from 12 to 20cm and thus quite large for trading arts.

Next to just displaying them the manufacturers had the bright idea to give us another option. You can play chess with the figures! Isn’t that neat? Well, not really actually…
First you have to have one big ass board to even think about using the figures since they’re quite big.
Secondly, some figures are quite fragile so you would really use super glue or something to insure that your king doesn’t lose it’s head. Literally.
Thirdly, some characters are strangely chosen… You would have to list all the characters to remember which character is what piece.
And lastly, you’d need to buy extra pieces because you won’t get there with these alone. Which brings me to a side note. This is the main reason they released the special edition (the black and white). If you buy the other volumes you get another problem. At this time I have two white kings (two Sora’s – volume 1 and volume 3… where’s Mickey?), two white queens (Kairi and Minnie – volume 3) and two different Black Pawns (Heartless – volume 1 – and Pete – volume 3)… Playing chess with these figures? I really don’t thinks so. The idea was good though but they obviously didn’t think this through.

So, covered that part. I know it’s a cheap trick but hey, I’m the writer 😀

Now, lets discuss each figure.

Kairi
– White Queen
– This is a very cute piece only I find her face a bit off. Can’t really put my finger on it why… The small details like the blossom, the water, the tropical fruit and her relaxed pose really define this piece.

Goofy
– White Knight
– Like Sora and Donald, Goofy’s background is Traverse Town. What I really like about this piece is his dynamic pose and the little Tinkerbell weathercock. Goofy is by far the smallest piece in the series. He’s also one of Ingis’ favorites.

Cloud Strife
– White Knight
– Yes, another white knight and also the first Final Fantasy piece included. I really had to cut in this one, he just didn’t want to fit, but overall easy to put together. I’ve always wondered why he has such a big sword… Compensating for something perhaps?

Oogie Boogie
– Black Rook
– I’m starting of with saying you better use your super glue with this one, some details have the tendency to fall of. I managed to stick it right without the use of glue, but you better not touch it. I love the details on this one. On one side of the base you have the Sword Cards from the big battle scene of The Nightmare Before Christmas and on the other side a torture wheel with a skeleton attached. On the floor is a small cage covered in green blood/slime and two eyeballs of the unfortunate creature that was in it. On the back you can see a small part where his stitches are a bit loose and the maggots are coming out to play. This is overall one of the most detailed figures so far. An absolute delight.

Ansem
– Black King
– I don’t particularly like this figure. He falls quite far forward and was one of the hardest figures to put together not that the pieces didn’t fit but because it wasn’t quite obvious where each part needed to go (even with the picture). Even though I don’t really like Ansem himself, I really do like his background. He looks menacing! Wish I could display it without Ansem himself… Knowing me, I wouldn’t do that…

Jafar
– Black Bishop
– This is the figure I used my knife on the most. But, he’s still my favorite from the second volume. Mostly because I just love Jafar. On the back of the base there is the Genie, sighing, with his head on his head, while Jafar hold the lamp triumphantly high with Iago on top. They both have a great grin on their faces like they know something is about to happen.

This concludes this review. Be sure to check out the review for the last volume. I’ll include my conclusion in that review.

Stay tuned for tomorrow! (always wanted to say that)

Pros:
– Very nice figures, hardly any paint misses
– Less fragile than they look
– Better choices than the first volume
– Kingdom Hearts !!
Cons:
– Quite expansive
– Hard to find, but not impossible
– Play chess? With these big things?

Pictures:

Item reviewed: Kingdom Hearts Formation Arts Volume 2
Type: trading arts, figures
Brand: Square-Enix Products
Variations:
you have the box volume (the one reviewed here), the black and white version (even rarer than this one) and there’s the blister package (which only has Kairi, Goofy and Cloud). Also bootlegs have been reported so watch out what you buy
Rarity: Uncommon, hard to find but not impossible because there was a rerun.