Tag Archives: valkyrie

Variable Fighter Master File: VF-1 Valkyrie Volume 2

Softbank Creative just released the second volume of the book, “Variable Fighter Master File:  VF-1 Valkyrie”.  This volume features FAST packs, armor, and other things.

I found the diagram of what happens in the cockpit when tranforming from fighter to battroid the most interesting.

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Yamato’s 1/48 scale VF-1S Transformable Valkyrie Roy Focker

Yamato just re-issued the 1/48 scale VF-1S, both Roy Focker’s and Hikaru’s! Since I like Roy’s black/yellow paint scheme more than Hikaru’s black/red paint scheme, I got Roy’s VF-1S.

Today, we’re all about comparisons with the 1/60 scale VF-1S.

The 1/48 box is of course slightly taller than a 1/60

And it's wider

Here’s what the 1/48 comes with:

Valkryie, two missile sets, gun pod, Roy Focker pilot figure. Not pictured: decal sheet and instruction book

But no display stand mounts, like you’ll find with every 1/60 scale valkyrie!

1/48 on the left, 1/60 VF-1S TV Type on the right

See the missiles? The 1/48's are all white, no black tips like on the 1/60

Better tampo printing on the 1/60. The "001" and RDF logo on the side of the nosecone are not pre-painted on the 1/48, but are decals

Okay, okay.  I’m biased towards the 1/60, even though the 1/48 has a few more gimmicks, like the antenna on the backpack and the radar in the nosecone.  The 1/60 just feels and looks tighter (especially between adjacent parts), and is pre-painted with more emblems.

But if bigger is what you like, the 1/48 is for you!

 

Yamato Macross Display Stand Deep Blue Version

The deep blue version of the Yamato Macross Display Stand for Valkyries just came out!

One improvement in the packaging is that the stand pieces are not held to the plastic containers by twistie ties!  As a result, the display stand pieces are easier to remove from the plastic containers.

Like the gray display stand, this deep blue display stand has the same glossy finish.  It’s also the same exact mold as all the other Yamato display stands.

Gray display stand base on the left, deep blue base on the right

In order to put the VF-1S TV Version on the display stand (and as with any Yamato VF-1), I had to separate the leg/air intake from the body of the fighter.  I noticed it’s a lot easier to separate the legs than previous VF-1’s.

VF-1J Max on gray display stand on the left, VF-1S TV Version on deep blue display stand on the right

I got the deep blue display stand from HobbyLink Japan:  http://www.hlj.com/product/YMT00193

Macross: Do You Remember Love? A Believable, Well-Illustrated Space Epic!

Why is Macross: DYRL, which came out in 1984, still popular today?  It’s because it is a believable, well-illustrated space epic:  we can relate to both the good guys (humans) and the bad guys (Zentradi and Meltrandi) because both share the same human DNA!  That’s why I, and probably a lot of other people, like it more than Macross Frontier, in which the bad guys are a bunch of insects, the Vajra.  We just can’t sympathize with the Vajra because they don’t have any human resemblance.

Not only can we relate to the humans and the Zentradi/Meltrandi, but we can also relate to their mecha.  The SDF-1 looks like an aircraft carrier, and the valkyrie fighters look like modern fighter jets.  In the valkyrie’s battloid mode, we see our humanoid image not only in the arms and legs that have human joints, but also in the head:  the VF-1S and VF-1J’s heads look like a human mask.  The only exception is the VF-1A’s head, which looks like a cyclops.  The Zentradi have the the Nousjadeul-Ger, and the Meltrandi have the Queadluun-Rau, both having humanoid form.

VF-1S, VF-1J, VF-1A

Nousjadeul-Ger's

Miria's Queadluun-Rau

In addition, we relate to the human cultural elements:  the importance of music and songs in moving people’s emotions, and the dramatic love triangle among Hikaru, Misa, and Minmay.  In Macross 7, music becomes more about being a weapon, which we find hard to relate to because that’s not the case in real life.  I think this is why Macross 7 is not appealing.

Macross is well-illustrated in its artwork and sound effects.  There is amazing detail, more than you’d find in normal cartoons.  For example, when the SDF-1 momentarily loses its internal gravity system, each of the chairs and tables individually tumble.

Everyone is well-dressed in costumes and uniforms.  Each weapon has its unique sound:  the valkyrie gunpods emit a rapid-fire sound, and the Zentradi/Meltrandi lasers echo a high-pitched sound.  The movie also intrigues us with advanced technology, like holograms, the vakyries’ nuclear-powered engines, hyperspace fold, and robots that clean garbage from the street (like the Roomba that was released in 2007)!

Did this garbage-collecting robot from 1984 seed the idea for the Roomba in 2007?

Finally, Macross has a great epic story:  humans are returning to their homeland, Earth, and are fighting against a formidable enemy, the Zentradi, who are at war with the Meltrandi.  We have captivating protagonists:  Hikaru, our humble hero who chooses between two women; Roy, the mentor figure and experienced soldier; Max, an expert fighter pilot who falls in love with a beautiful enemy ace pilot; Misa, a high-ranking military officer; and Minmay, the cute performer who charms everyone with her songs.  We have worthy adversaries, the Zentradi and Meltrandi:  Miria, the Meltrandi’s ace pilot; Bodolza, the Zentradi leader; Quamzin/Kamjin/Khyron, the aggressive Zentradi commander; Britai, and Exedor.  I think that having such worthy adversaries makes a good spectacle because we see the intense struggle between good and evil:  it’s the same reason that when there’s a worthy villain in a James Bond film, like Le Chiffre in Casino Royale, we are drawn closer to the characters’ struggle.

Le Chiffre from Casino Royale

What do you like most about Macross?

Yamato’s Gray Macross Display Stand for Valkyrie

All right, so I caved in and bought a gray Macross display stand!  The mold is the same as the black and silver versions, but this gray stand is more similar to the black stand, in regards to weight and overall feel.  And it has the yellow and black stripes!

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Box for gray display stand on the left, black display stand box on the right

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Rear view of boxes for gray display stand (left) and black display stand (right)

The major difference between the gray and black stands is that the gray one has a glossy finish, whereas the black one has a matte finish.  As a result, the gray stand looks shinier, and it’s also easier to detach and re-attach the four support arms.

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Top views of the display stand bases

Now here’s a bottom view of the bases.  Note that the “filler” base is the same plastic, and this filler gives the base the majority of its weight.

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Bottom view of gray stand base (left) and black stand base (right)

Here’s how the stands look with the arms inserted into the bases:

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Gray and black display stands, arms attached to bases

See the little square peg in the lower right-hand corner of the base?  You can remove the four support arms and attach them to the peg:

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Gray and black display stands, four support arms detached

The same shade of gray is used for the connectors to the valkyries (please see previous post).

I know I could’ve painted over the gray and white stripes on the black display stand, but oh well!

 

Yamato’s Macross Display Stands for Valkyries

Today we’re going to have a close look at Yamato’s “Macross Display Stand for Valkyrie.”  These stands were originally made for the 1/48 scale valkyries, but they work just as well for the second generation 1/60 scale valkyries.  There are three versions:  a black one, a silver one, and a gray one.  I have only the black and silver ones.

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Box for black display stand

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Box for silver display stand

Each stand also comes with a set of connectors.  The black stand comes with gray connectors, and the silver stand comes with white connectors.  However, if you have the newer 1/60 second generation valkyries, you won’t need the connectors because the second generation 1/60 scale valkyries already come with the connectors.

Here’s a side-by-side view of both stands:

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Silver and black display stands side by side

Each stand consists of three parts:  the base, the main support arm, and four smaller support arms.  The four smaller support arms, which are screwed together in one piece, are for displaying valkyries in fighter mode.  For Gerwalk and Battloid modes, you remove these smaller support arms.

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Connector for the four smaller support arms

The top of the support arm is where you drop in the connector on your valkyrie.

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Top of display stand arm, with hole for valkyrie connector

Here’s the gray connector that comes with the 1/60 VF-1J Mass Production TV Type:

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Connector for VF-1J Mass Production TV Type (fighter and gerwalk modes)

The bottom of this connector fits into the top of the display stand arm, and is held by gravity:

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Valkyrie connected to the display stand arm

At the very beginning of Macross the movie, we see some valkyries launch from a similar support arm.  See the black and yellow stripes?

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See the four support arms/hinges?

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Close-up of the four support arms/hinges in the movie

The black and yellow stripes are on the silver display stand, not on the black one!  Doh!

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See the black and yellow stripes?

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The black display stand has gray and white stripes!

The display stand has several points of articulation:

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With all these articulation points, you can put your valkyries in some very striking poses.  All the joints are very clicky and hold a particular position well.

Here’s the bottom of the base!

Bottom view of display stand base

Bottom view of display stand base

And here’s a top view of the base:

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Top view of display stand base

Search for “Macross display stand” on Google, and you’ll get some product matches.  From Japan Toys, http://www.japan-toys.com/cgi-bin/us-goods.cgi?id=CHO-408 it seems Yamato released another gray version with the black and yellow stripes!

One final note:  the silver display stand feels lighter than the black one, and I think it has thinner plastic.  As a result, the black stand feels more durable.  Also, when inserting the arm into the base for the silver display stand, I sometimes see some paint falling out of the bottom.