Disclaimer: This is my first haul. It will be very picture/text heavy and hopefully larger than any other haul I will do. hopefully haha NSFW/panty-shots will be under spoiler tags.
I may have splurged too much at the beginning of the summer. I moved to a new place in June and finally bought my first detolf. I was so excited to see my collection out of their boxes for the first time in a few years. So my splurge was partially due to stress-relief and partially due to excitement about acquiring more space for figures. Please enjoy my self-indulgent rambles and photo dump.
● May ●
In May, my SO and I took a vacation to WDW for our 6th anniversary. This was our third trip to WDW together and we may not go back for a couple more years (hopefully once the Galaxy's Edge hype dies down). It was super fun and refreshing for both of us! I picked up a few souvenirs and took lots of pictures.
Yellow seemed to be my color for this trip. haha The lemon cooler bag is actually something I picked up in 2017 before a road trip, but I thought it really fit. We used magicbands this time which were super convenient and fast to use. (That is until I dropped mine in Animal Kingdom and we had to wait until the end of the day to retrieve it from lost and found whoops haha)
While I'm not a pin collector, I did pick up these two pins to commemorate my first time at Hollywood Studios. We saw the Indiana Jones show which was so cool and surprising! And we ended up riding Tower of Terror twice cause I loved it so much!
On this trip, we finally got to ride Flight of Passage! We arrived right before opening and only had a 3 or so hour wait time! The ride was definitely worth it and I plan to buy some commemorative candles/room sprays of the scents from the forest scenes.
Though Animal Kingdom remains unrivaled as our favorite park, Hollywood Studios was a super fun romp. We didn't get to ride the new Slinkydog coaster, but we absolutely adored the Fantasmic show! My SO loved it as a kid, so he was ecstatic to see it again. Definitely a highlight of the trip!
On to the May weeb merch...
April AmiAmi Order
My April AmiAmi order originally was just a preorder for Akari... however, when I saw that Isabelle was in stock, I just had to grab her and the new You EXQ. The larger the order, the less you feel bad about paying for EMS shipping. haha
First up is the preorder hime herself ITEM #604432. To be truthful, I have yet to see March Comes in Like a Lion but it's next up on my backlog. She's such a pretty character and appealing figure, I immediately preordered her when she went up on AmiAmi last year.
Her box captures her fluffy, shojo-esque aura and displays some beautiful preview pics of the contents inside. The box itself feels pretty secure & compact and has a velvety soft-to-the-touch finish.
Akari herself is gorgeous with a subtly detailed sculpt. Her expression is sweet and stylized accurately to the show. Her pose, while simple, accentuates her sweet aura. The paint job is so clean and dreamy! Her skin, hair, and clothing are lovely!
Her sweater is definitely a highlight of this sculpt. But I also love the smaller details like the button on her shirt underneath the sweater, her squishy & small fingers, and her cute brown flats.
Let's look a little closer...
Click for NSFW!Too Lewd!
Akari has definitely become one of my favorites in my collections! And so has the next figure...
I had planned to order ITEM #181081 previously during her September 2018 rerelease but forgot whoops so I'm so glad I was able to grab her while she was in stock for her retail price. I own ITEM #143937 and was excited to get her other expressions/accessories with this autumn version.
Just like her spring version, this Isabelle nendo is super charming! From her chipper faces and poses to her real silver bells on her hair tie.
Her faceplates and flourish backplates are very cute! Isabelle's proud faceplate and kirakira backplate are my favorite expression of both her versions.
When the two are side by side, it is obvious there is a difference between the autumn and spring versions: Isabelle's fur/hair and her clothing on her spring version are more saturated in color. Even with the color differences, all faceplates work together perfectly. This autumn version also conveniently comes with short-sleeved arms that can be used with her spring version. So excited to display these two doggie assistants together!
Next up is a fun swimsuit idol!
Happy to add ITEM #782038 to my You collection. You is my favorite Aquors girl (followed by Yoshiko) and has been my main girl in SIF for many years. I now own all her EXQs and almost all her Banpresto prize figures! (Just missing ITEM #504808.)
As a fan of EXQ prizes, I was not disappointed with this one. You's sculpting is simple but very solid for a prize figure. While the EXQ bases are nothing special, I do appreciate the sturdy simplicity and how the white looks with her swimsuit.
Click for Close Ups!Too Lewd!
*please excuse the dust on her thighs, didn't notice it until editing these pics
My favorite part of this figure is her cute swimsuit bows and skin details. Even though the part where her tummy meets her swimsuit bottoms looks a little rough on the edges, I still adore the rest. Her soft-looking skin, charming smile, and sea-kissed hair match the appeal of the other You prize figures I own.
This month's box was a pretty nice way to start the spring/summer. Here are all the April AmiAmi girls together.
On to the next order...
May AmiAmi Order
My May AmiAmi order are all from the preowned section. I found an older Penguindrum nendo, some Katangatari figures, and Alter Mercedes for a decent price. While they were decent finds, the nendo and Katangartari merch were mostly impulse buys based on price.
Let's start with another hime, ITEM #94890. I scored her for around 2,200 yen and despite some plastic smell issues (just needed to air her out for couple days), she's a sweet addition!
This Princess of the Crystal nendo is my first pre-300 nendo and I was little surprised by the different box style from my post-300 nendos. This style is actually pretty cool, the busy design really works well with the show's aesthetic.
POTC is super cute! GSC translated Hoshino Lily's design into chibi form quite well. The glossy finish on her black latex-y fabric looks super stylish and I love the warm gradient on her amber hair.
I appreciate how they included two styles of her flowing skirt and how her panties have the cute back ruffles. Too cute! The yellow trailing appendages(?) on her hat have their own joints, so they can be positioned in many different poses. Such a nice detail!
If I'm being honest, I mostly bought her nendo form to pair with ITEM #98664. I scored her GSC 1/8 figure last year on AmiAmi preowned for under 3,600 yen. Posing her chibi form next to her 1/8 form is super cute!
Click for Nendo Tush!Too Lewd!
Mawaru Penguindrum is a very special show for me. I watched it in junior high when it aired in 2011 and it struck a cord with me in many ways. If you haven't seen it, please give it a chance! And if you have seen it, please look into the backstory of the plot cause it really expands the meaning/symbolism of the show and characters. And really there were a lot of great, life-changing shows in the same year like Anohana, Bunny Drop, Nichijou, and Chihayafuru; so if you're looking for more anime to watch, please give the 2011 seasons a shot!
The next figure is from another series that I recommend and that also holds a special place in my heart...
Just like the simple box for IKP Haruhi (ITEM #47258) I ordered last year, Hitei's box is also white with a bold accent color lining the box windows. The only real interesting detail is the rose cutout insert lining the interior of the box.
When I ordered ITEM #56547, I did not know how big she really was. For under 1,400 yen, I thought I had scored a huge deal. Little did I know there may have been a reason for the low price...
Hitei is honestly stunning and decently large for a prize figure. Her hair is the highlight of this piece, but it doesn't weigh down that much the figure presumably since it is hollow on the inside. The color production is very nice and accurate to the show. She looks great next to other pink and yellow figures.
Her face is lovely and the rose accents in her design are very appealing.
HOWEVER, please be warned. IKP Hitei Hime is a difficult prize figure to put together. Popping her feet onto the base is a chore since only one foot has an insert hole and the other foot must be placed in a groove. The foot that fits in the groove rarely wants to stay in place. And since her feet are covered by her skirt, it is difficult to adjust. To accurately place her on her base at all, you have to remove or half-remove her skirt which is a soft, malleable plastic. It's kind of nervewracking to do so because the plastic feels somewhat fragile to me.
Now this wouldn't be that much of an issue if you just leave her assembled right? Well no, it's still a problem even after assembly. Due to the weight of her hair (which has to be propped up by a peg in the back of the base), any attempts at moving her to either adjust placement or dust has resulted in her hair dislodging from the peg and usually causing her foot to slip out of the groove and the whole thing to fall apart.
Sorry for the long rant, but I urge anyone who is interested in this figure (or other IKP prizes) to be wary of assembly issues like this.
Whew! Now to lighten the mood, here are some panty shots.
Click for Lewds!Too Lewd!
Next, I found another IKP Katangatari merch. I presume this was from the same owner of Hitei who sold it to AmiAmi, along with another figure I got in July.
I grabbed this Togame (ITEM #40340) and Shichika (ITEM #42380) prize set for around 600 yen. Not bad at all, since it's pretty difficult to find Katangatari merch nowadays.
I won't be opening this set since I may give it as a gift in the future. My SO and I watched the show last year and it's pretty special to us (he's a Shichika fan and I'm into Togame) so I may hold this piece for him or we may split it.
Now for the main event of this month's box: ITEM #13123. I got her at a nice steal at less than 8k yen for B grade. Not too shabby imo.
Like the rest of Alter's Odin Sphere collection, Mercedes' box is wonderfully themed and does a good job at protecting the contents. I love these boxes! Like Akari's, these boxes have a velvety soft finish and get you in the mood for unboxing.
I love the color production on this figure! The earthy greens and translucent wings & water on her base are simply fantastic! Speaking of her base, as anyone who has seen a review of this figure, it is the je ne sais quoi of this piece. Alter did a masterful job at constructing a very unique and aesthetically pleasing base that truly makes Mercedes fly.
This is my last Alter Odin Sphere figure (that is until they finally paint poor Oswald ITEM #464713). Mercedes is my least favorite heroine of the game, but I really turned around on her story as the game progressed (and once I got the hang of her gameplay mechanic).
And with that, the May loot comes to an end. Let's look at one final shot of the group together.
● June ●
June was my birthday month and also was a very eventful month overall. Right when I got back from my WDW trip, my family and I moved to a different house. This month is a bit smaller since I mostly spent money on buying Ikea furniture for my new office.
June MFC Order
Starting off, I ordered from an awesome user (C2QUEEN). She was selling a portion of her collection for personal reasons. It was my first experience buying from users on MFC and it was a very pleasant one! Definitely recommend buying from her!
She gave me a very good price for all five Konasuba nendos as a set (ITEM #415013 ITEM #464596 ITEM #538429 ITEM #666745 ITEM #604431).
Originally, I only intended to get Aqua and Kazuma but I couldn't pass up on the whole team for a good price. Though it was a lot more than I intended to spend on figures for the month, I wrote this one off as a birthday gift. haha
I love this silly group together, so many fun scene possibilities!
And for those who are curious...
Click for Nendo Tush!Too Lewd!
As for the the Aqua schrödinger's panties debacle: GSC gave her no panties.
June Amazon/B&N Order
In June, I also picked up a few manga/LN.
From Amazon: I got Katangatari Vol. 2 for less than retail price. It's always nice when the preorder price still applies for a week or so after release.
From Barnes & Noble: I bolstered my manga collection a bit with Nyankees Vol. 1 & 2, Delinquent Housewife Vol. 3 & 4, and the new release of Komi Can't Communicate.
Quick manga summaries for those who are interested. Check them out if any strike your fancy!
● Nyankees is a silly series about the daily mischief and turf battles of average street cats who are portrayed as human "yankees"/street thugs.
● Delinquent Housewife is a 4 volume josei manga about a newlywed wife who moves in with her family-in-law while her husband is on an unexpected business trip. She must learn to not only get along with her new family but hide her secret of not being quite the "perfect wife" they were expecting.
● Komi Can't Communicate is an endearing slice of life about a girl with severe social anxiety who is challenged to make 100 friends.
June was a smaller loot month, but not as small as...
● July ●
In July, I finished unpacking and set up my game consoles. A couple of years ago, my circle pad on my 3DS broke and I superglued a rubber cover on it. However, when I opened it after the move, the makeshift circle pad basically disintegrated. Not wanting to get a new system (my trusty 3DS is the cute poptart ACNL special edition circa 2013), I decided to properly fix it.
I researched rates for 3DS repairs and found the fees to be outlandish! Nintendo's repair rate was out of the question and, from my findings, it seemed like most tech repair places think the 3DS is radioactive or something. So I resolved to say "to heck with it all!" and fixed it myself. Following a step-by-step video online, I purchased a ~$6 replacement circle pad and cracked that puppy open.
Opening the 3DS down to the motherboard wasn't too difficult. The actual removing and replacing was very easy, however I do understand now why tech repair gurus and companies are hesitant about the 3DS. The dual-screen mechanisms and ribbon wiring are very delicate and any hasty movements could cause major problems.
Thankfully this repair went very smoothly and no causalities occurred! The whole process took about an hour. Here are the before and after shots.
I chose a cute pink-mauve color for the circle pad and I think it adds a unique charm to my cherished poptart edition. The whole process was honestly fun and satisfying! I hope to dip my toes in more hardware repairs again in the future.
On to the July loot: a minimal yet satisfying haul.
July AmiAmi Order 1
The first AmiAmi order was a preorder gift from my SO as a belated 2019 birthday gift. Originally when I saw the first previews for this figure, her face looked off to me; but the more I looked at her, the more she grew on me. Ultimately, this was the top 2019 release I was looking forward to: ITEM #525327 !
Revolve's Holo box is divine; it truly evokes a mid-autumn harvest moon-lit night! The color scheme and detail shots are works of art, and the box itself feels decently sturdy. For a week or so after unboxing, I was reluctant to put her box in storage since I liked it so much.
Holo exceeded my expectations! Her sculpt and paint job look identical to her prototype shots. She is very impressive in person and a joy to view from all angles.
Holo's pose and hair/clothing movement are brimming with life. The level of detail is breathtaking. From the swirling end of her dress to the wood grain on her spilling tankard to the threading details on her dress and shoe seams, all of the little details that Revolve handcrafted into this lovely scale are fantastic!!
Along with her clothing, this Holo's hair and tail are truly worthy of the Wise Wolf! Her hair/tail is tied with her nendo's for my absolute favorite Holo color production. The subtle pink undertone of her warm amber locks is too beautiful! The detailed stray strands and overall playful motion of her long hair and magnificent tail really make this piece.
The AmiAmi preorder included a lovely acrylic framed print of the original art that inspired this figure. I apologize for completely forgetting to snap a picture of that print. Instead, please enjoy two lovely Holo drinking buddies!
Overall, I wholeheartedly love this figure and am very happy to add her to my collection!
July GameStop Order
My next July order was a last-minute preorder for ITEM #757503 who was sold out everywhere I saw but Gamestop. I ordered her with a Link's Awakening game + amiibo preorder and I'm glad they shipped separately.
How many Isabelle amiibos do we need before we're satisfied? The answer may surprise you!
Jokes aside, SSB Isabelle is super charming! Her challenger pose is surprisingly dynamic. Viewing her from different angles really reminds me of walking around my ACNL town with a bell-jingling doggie in tow.
With all her amiibos side-by-side, several things jump out at me. First, the quality improvement of Nintendo's sculpting team is pretty inspiring - SSB Isabelle really captures her in game model and feels more high-quality than her AC counterparts. Secondly, it slightly frustrates me that they are not the same height - even disregarding her leaning pose, the AC amiibos stand a little higher due to the green hill on their bases. I prefer the Animal Crossing amiibo bases over the gold & black SSB pucks personally.
Lastly, the level of detail on her new sweater vest is pretty nice! I like the new texture and the yellow-green colors they chose. It gives her a warmer color scheme in comparison to her other summer amiibo.
SSB Isabelle is definitely a tough contender for top tier amiibo list imo! If you can find her, she's a worthy pick-up!
July AmiAmi Order 2
And drumroll please for the last order in this haul!
Early July, I swiped ITEM #41626 off AmiAmi preowned. Since she was alone in this order, I decided to try SAL for the first time with her. More on my SAL experience later.
Togame's box is pretty much identical to Hitei's just a bit smaller and with an orange leaf motif lining the inside.
IKP Togame, like the other IKP figures I've mentioned, is pretty large for a prize and has a simple but solid sculpt. Her color scheme is accurate to the anime, however her blank stare sort of lacks the Togame charm I was hoping for. Like Hitei, Togame's hair takes up a good portion of her silhouette, feels hollow, and is propped up by the base. I really do like that winding glazed river-like piece that props up her hair (in comparison to Hitei's short peg, it feels more cohesive).
I also like the other little details on this simple prize, like her leaf motif continuing onto her base and the flourishes on her katana.
All and all though, my favorite part of this figure is...
Click for NSFW!Too Lewd!
Such a nice tush!!
Here are the two Katanagatari girls next to each other. Togame stands slightly shorter than my IKP Haruhi and an almost full head shorter than Hitei.
While Togame is not in danger of toppling over thankfully, I did struggle to put her on her base. The base pegs refused to slide into her feet even when I rinsed her with hot water - nothing worked. After 35 minutes of fighting, I resigned to my fate and just accepted that the pegs will forever be half-way in.
During the chaos, there was a casualty: Togame's leaf attached to her fingers broke. Though, after a few nights in figure hospital under the care of Dr. Gorilla G. Lue, she is perfectly fixed as of writing this article.
As for my experience with SAL...
Info about SAL:
SAL is a slower, economy international shipping service that can take 2 to 4+ weeks to arrive. The service I used was Registered Small Packet which offers tracking. To qualify for this option, max package weight is 2kg and max length is 60cm. Insurance coverage offers compensation up to 6k yen (~57 usd).
For SAL (Registered) shipping, I paid 1,490 yen. Togame originally shipped from AmiAmi on July 9th, left Japan on July 14th, arrived in New York on July 21st, arrived at my local regional center on July 26th, and was delivered to my doorstep on July 30th.
The whole process took 21 days (3 weeks) and, considering I was prepared to wait even longer, I didn't mind the wait at all. The package and figure were spotless and there were no complaints in regards to the tracking service since it was pretty identical to my previous experiences. It was a successful experiment and I really would consider shipping with SAL again.
However, as a mainly EMS user, SAL will not be de-throning the speed and security EMS gives. I would never ship an over 7k yen order with SAL, the up to 20k to 2mil yen (~188 to ~19k usd) insurance offered by EMS is just too important imo. Not to mention, SAL is not available for larger figures/heavy orders. So unless I'm buying only one small value figure/merch again, SAL will not be my first choice.
And with that, my May - July 2019 haul comes to an end! Here's the whole loot crew together~!
● Final Thoughts & Looking Forward ●
Writing this haul took a lot longer than I expected. Setting up photo shoot days, editing photos, drafting the actual haul... ahh!! I learned a lot about shooting and editing figure photos and I hope to improve for next time. But honestly, I really had fun posing and appreciating my purchases. I definitely want to do another haul, but it won't be for a couple of months not too soon, I need a break haha.
As for future life & haul things, I have a few preorders for September and November already lined up. My SO and I will be going on a fun weeb excursion next month and a Halloween con the month after. So please look forward to more weeb stuff and frivolous purchases in the coming months!
● Thank you so much for reading!! ●