By Justin Guillou / February 24th, 2015
Today I am not here to talk about a game. but rather an amiibo. You know, those little figures Nintendo has been putting out over the last few months that are driving collectors (at least in the US) crazy. Recently, a new one has been released and this one is very special. I bring you the Shulk amiibo!
As soon as I had my hands on him, I was in awe. Seriously, for a $13 figure, I could not have asked for anything better. Like all of the other amiibos, his pose is the same as his trophy/artwork from Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo Wii U or 3DS. In this pose, he has one foot in the air. Due to Nintendo’s law of amiibo physics, they must have BOTH feet attached to the base via a stand. These stands have been rather controversial during the first two waves of amiibo. This is mainly due to the fact that Nintendo decided to place them in some ‘interesting’ areas. Let’s just say that, if Captain Falcon starts having trouble walking next time you start up Smash Bros., you will know why. Of course, when the Shulk amiibo was announced, I was concerned with how he would receive the stand treatment. I am happy to report that his stand does not seem to get in the way. He has a transparent one that is against his right leg and supports his left foot. He kind of looks like he is going down a slide, which oddly works.
Time to check out his body, or rather, his features! What stood out the most for me in his outfit was his red jacket. This is incredibly detailed to the point where you can even see creases and wrinkles on it. The jacket also has a glossiness to it to really make it shine, no pun intended. They sculpted a good amount of depth to the hood. It almost looks like he can actually put it on. Another great detail was the zipper on his jacket. They really did not need to go this far, but the fact they did just makes it even better. The paintwork on his shorts was also very well done. They nailed the colors used for the pattern on his shorts. His boots, however, were one of the weaker parts color-wise. While none of the colors are particularly bad choices, the shade of red used along with the brown seem to blend together too much, hiding details from what would have otherwise been a very intricate set of boots.
His face is not suffering from the poor paint jobs as some other amiibos, such as Marth. His face is beautiful and smooth. When I stare into his bright blue eyes I can tell he is about to see a vision. His hair is not overly spiky, which is nice since it makes the hair look a bit more natural. As in, someone can actually have this hair style without using a crazy wig. The color choice here gives him a dirty blond look, which I appreciate, as it makes him appear a bit more realistic as opposed to using a loud yellow making him look like a Super Saiyan. Another highlight is the Monado itself which is almost as tall as Shulk. It is very thin, which was a smart move, otherwise, this thing would have some serious balance issues. I do like how they bothered to sculpt each of his fingers. It is yet another detail that separates an average figure from a great one.
Shulk can be used in Smash, so you can train him to effortlessly 10-stock you. I would like to see someone get five of them, and have each one specialize in one Monado art. Personally, I like to use Speed and Shield most, so my amiibo will probably be using those a lot. The Shulk amiibo will also be usable in the upcoming Xenoblade Chronicles 3D. Not too much is known other than he may be able to score you some neat bonuses like in-game models. The biggest drawback to the Shulk amiibo, unfortunately, is his availability. Nintendo of America decided to make this Amiibo a GameStop-exclusive. To make matters even worse, these stores do not seem to be getting a large amount of them for people who did not pre-order. Also, despite Shulk being a retailer-exclusive figure, Nintendo World Store in New York City on occasion stocks and sells him out of the blue. No one really knows when the next shipment of Shulk amiibo will be — you kind of have to be lucky and come across him. It is a shame that more people will not have access to him without resorting to importing or paying a premium from a seller online. If you can somehow manage to find him for retail price, pick him up!
Amiibo Purchased by Author.
Thank you Brandon for the images!
AmiiboGameStopMonadoNintendoOperation RainfallShulkWiiWii UXenoblade