RVF-25 Messiah Valkyrie Luca Custom
Review by JoshB
I'm not going to go over the pros and cons of the Messiah Valkyrie again, we all know its a mixed bag. Good fighter mode, good battroid mode, absolutely horrible gerwalk mode.
The RVF-25 Messiah Valkyrie Luca Custom is a special-use valkyrie used in the series Macross Frontier. Luca Angelloni is a meek, bookish member of the S.M.S. Skull Squadron who pilots the special Reconnaissance Version Messiah Valkyrie.
The toy is essentially the same as the other Macross F DX Chogokin toys, with some paint and mold changes. Each of the Skull Squadron members have a custom VF-25, different from the mass production version. You can get your RVF-25 Messiah Valkyrie at Anime-Export.com
Luca's RVF-25 features a unique head sculpt as well as a large radar dish on the back. Like the Michael Custom, Luca's valkyrie comes with super armor parts and a custom display stand.
In fighter mode, the main fighter is tight and looks great.
Adding on the super parts makes for a frustrating experience. Most of the armor parts fit ok, specifically the leg and chest armor, but the armor that covers the intakes falls off at the drop of a hat.
As far as gerwalk mode goes, its absolutely fu*kin terrible. Without the armor its a mess, add in the armor you just want to smash it with a hammer. Nothing stays on at all, and the armor on the back and wings just makes the whole rear sag. The stand is supposed to make it displayable, but fails miserably. I was too kind about it in my Ozma review - but after handling a few of these it really becomes apparent.
But lets not dwell on the misery of gerwalk form.
Battroid mode is really nice, much better than Gerwalk, but still you end up with too many armor pieces that don't fit well. Expect a waterfall of parts when trying to transform it. Best not to bother with them and just wait till you have the whole thing transformed.
The real weak point again is the armor over the hips, or the intake manifolds. There just isn't enough plastic on the clips to give them a secure connection.
There are some pluses to the armor though. I like the shoulder armor that has concealed missile pods, I like the leg and chest armor, and I like the big boosters. You can still have the radar dish attached on the back in this mode as well, but it dislodges easily.
The figure also comes with all the armaments of the other valks - the large gun, the two blades, and several interchangeable hands.
The stand that the figure comes with has a few issues. The main point of connection to the stand in fighter and gerwalk mode is a black tab that fits under the nose. Under the bottom of the nose is a tab that pulls out to connect to the waist in battroid mode. The black tip of the stand fits into the hole left by this piece when it is flipped out. This anchors the nose, but the rest of the toy simply "rests" on the rear plate. This would not be a bad idea if it were not for the fact that the front part can easily separate from the rest of the stand, causing the valk to come crashing to the floor. In battroid mode there is a separate stand part that attaches under the waist, but the figure stands fine without it.
So yeah, lots of complaints. So why did I get it? Well, I needed something to display my Tamashii Web Exclusive Ghost and Weapons Set. That review is coming up next.
And let's be fair, the toy is not terrible, it just has one terrible mode. Most Macross collectors will likely just display it in one mode anyway, and it DOES look really good in fighter and battroid mode.
Should you want to get one for your collection, you can get one at Anime-Export.com
Comments31 comments posted
Having watched Macross Frontier I really like this design and color scheme of the figure. Flimsy, floppy, whatever it may be... It's nice to look at for a Macross toy. I like the variation and the design direction of the head, sort of like a radar dome that weather stations use (see what I mean). Nice review.
That's friggin' hilarious! I don't think I've ever seen a pic on a review in which the figure was "placed" on the floor that way! Talk about being frustrated.
Wait until you guys see my Armored VF-25S review.
I don't know why I keep trying to comment on these new Macross Frontier Valks. I should really just leave it alone. It's like country/western to a hip hop head. It's just not for me...and as such, I shouldn't comment.
And yet, I still feel the need to vent.
I looked at the pic below, and it seriously took my brain about 7 seconds to resolve what/where the "head" was:
That ain't right.
These toys blow because the animation models blow.
Serious you don't like it Sajeev, to each there own. This figure isn't so bad those two bips near the top of the head aren't so bad (red eyes so to speak). There not so important to the design of this figure... he's still cool. Have you watched Macross F? Maybe you'd have more appreciation for it? And yes I don't own this figure myself but think it's a nice piece of work. It's your own opinion with respect.
Well, I think the VF-25 design is extremely generic for modern mecha designs. I mean, this looks no different from something from Eureka 7 or Aquarion or any number of other shows (with mecha designed by Kawamori or not!). They all look way too busy for me, and vastly uninteresting.
I actually have watched all of Macross Frontier, however, and I really enjoyed it. I mean, it was a little derivative, but it was still solidly entertaining. The one thing I didn't like about it, as you can imagine, were the mecha fight scenes.
It was kinda like the Bayformers movies (only not *nearly* as bad). One reviewer of TF2 said, "[the robot designs are] too busy, there's too damn much going on. If you're going to do anything with the core idea of a Transformer, then I should be amazed at how all the parts fold into one another, how a robot can become a truck. Instead, we're blinded by an infinite number of moving parts that mean nothing. As if someone waved streamers in your face and then showed you a semi-trailer."
These modern designs are like that to me. I agree with grendizer1975 below: the classic designs were better in my opinion because there had been nothing like them before, and their simpler lines demonstrated a real solid sense of "cool scifi robot" geometry without having to hide the fundamentals behind a blinding storm of polygons.
Also, the action in Macross Frontier went by too fast. Again, just like Bayformers, it's like the action goes off on its own without taking the audience with it!
I'd mentioned this over at TBDX: I think it would be AMAZING if they used the modern computer-aided cell shading animation techniques they have now to re-do the original Macross. Those mecha designs with the old show's pace of action would look absolutely killer with modern CG!
The old show had the same pace of action. Sounds like you just want some kids to get off your lawn.
Or...the VF-25 could suck.
Who's argument is more credible?
At least I provide valid reasons for opinions. You on the other hand...
Your reasons are "I don't like the way it looks and its not what I like!"
The original series had a fair share of quick and detailed fights. Basically any time Ichiro Itano and his assistant Hideaki Anno were in charge of animating something. There was no real "shakey-cam" or weird angles to confuse you. Now Frontier uses a lot of the same techniques. Granted Itano was no on board, but he did work on Macross Zero which contained many callbacks to the original series such as the gunpod catch and the one armed Gerwalk rescue. The animators at Satelight appeared to have studied Itano's style (and even re-used some stuff from Zero). Honestly I don't see what's different about the fights in Frontier when compared to practically everything else in Macross. Even if you don't like the VF-25, its still a robot fighter plane and is doing the same things they've been doing for the past 27 years now. The style has been pretty consistent since SDF, DYRL, II, Plus, 7, Zero, and Frontier except I guess now sometimes there's a knife?
Well, I think by now, it's pretty safe to say, yes, I don't like the VF-25 design! I know you're not majoring in English Lit at school, but c'mon, Andrew!
The point, is these are ALL opinions we're stating here. Sure, we express them with varying intensity, but I'm not going to get confused when someone states resolutely that ___ is crap, and then go and think that it IS crap simply because that person said so! Again, these are all opinions. But to keep whining that someone is just saying "get off my lawn" sounds like butt-hurt otaku-ism. I know you can come up with something better than that, Andrew.
I think I clearly stated why I hold the opinion that the VF-25 sucks. Instead of glossing over the points, let's try digging into them.
So, kinda what RobotBastard was alluding to below, the technology exists now to be able to animate very complex designs very efficiently and consistently...and even preserve ungodly amounts of detail (surface features, panel lines, etc.). But when you do that, it makes for very "busy" action sequences. Because this mecha's anatomy is difficult enough to discern in still images, when it's flapping around at full speed (AND full detail) on your screen, it just becomes one big mess. Again, Bayformers waving streamers in your face, then showing you a truck.
The action in the original Macross show (or Macross 7) was fast-paced, but because they were hand-animated, a lot of detail was left out. So, even when they're moving fast, you can still resolve what the mecha is doing in the midst of an action sequence. I, for one, can go back and watch Macross, and then watch Macross Frontier and see worlds of difference.
But I guess that if you contend that you "don't see what's different about the fights in Frontier when compared to practically everything else in Macross", then there's really not much more we can discuss.
"but because they were hand-animated, a lot of detail was left out. "
Except that is NOT true of Macross. Most of the notable scenes in hand animated Macross features have consistently high detail during even the briefest of action scenes. That's what people remember about Ichiro Itano's work in Macross and other shows like Megazone 23 and even Angel Cop was the consistently high level of detail apparent even during action scenes. So no a lot of detail was not left out.
"Because this mecha's anatomy is difficult enough to discern in still images, when it's flapping around at full speed (AND full detail) on your screen, it just becomes one big mess. "
It has two arms, two legs, a head, and some wings on its back. It's barely more complicated than the YF-19.
"and even preserve ungodly amounts of detail (surface features, panel lines, etc.)."
The CGI models for Macross Frontier are not full of "ungodly detail." The VF-25 has no more panel lines than a VF-1. The Queadluun Rea is no more detailed than lineart for the Queadluun Rau.
go to bed old man
Man, you really are the whiney Macross otaku whom everyone complains about, aren't you? I really don't care about this crap at all (hence my country music analogy). But since you refuse to give up, I'll add the following:
Do you fully realize that you're trying to tell me that THIS:
has no more detail than THIS??
I mean, if you really and truly believe that, that's okay. We don't have to Thunderdome over it. I just think you're out of your f-in' mind and we can leave it at that.
Go get the Alto paint scheme, which doesn't have every single panel picked out in a different color.
I do agree that the action in MacF is at about a 20% higher frame-rate than I'd like to see. There's a little too much focus on "holy crap guys LOOK HOW MANY POLYGONS WE CAN ANIMATE NOW".
Sanjeev is right the Macross "F" mecha has a heavy amount of detail, look at all the angles and lines, contours, etc... Start from the boots up and look hard. He might hate the design but it's just the evolution of the Macross theme and I really like all the designs from Macross F. Even this dome head...
I think it's more like Macross + Virtual on.
You come into this thread with hate and trying to stir up crap. You're the one throwing around words like "bayformer" and just spreading your obvious dislike. this and this I don't see a gigantic leap in detail. The VF-25 is no bayformer. It's largely one color with a few contours and simple details. Its not even that far removed from a VF-1.
1.) Bayformers remark about the action in Macross series is a far stretch considering Macross was on TV 25yrs or more before his stuff even existed, but I see where your trying to get at... the pace of Macross has always been fast in battle sequences look at the opening Robotech (Macross Saga) credits small example, Max's fighter taking out those Zentradi pods. 2.) These are nice designs despite your dislike, and I'm gonna take a wild guess that your up against a true Macross fan here so it sounds like he won't back down. 3.) fight! fight! fight! (kidding)
Well, to be fair, I didn't come in with hate...I wasn't looking for a scrap--I just wanted to post my frustration at the direction the designs are headed. I've been a fan of Macross since Robotech first aired in the States (and, of course, Jetfire), and even before that with the "Robotech" Revell models. I've always liked the Valk designs, but if they keep heading in this direction (of which I, personally, disapprove), then I can't see being a fan of the franchise much longer with future series...and that's a damn shame.
And I realize that the Bayformers analogy isn't perfect, but I never meant it to be. The designs in Bayformers are repulsive to me, but I was more comparing the pace and inscrutability of the action/transformations in Bayformers to the action in Macross Frontier. That's all.
Regarding the images you linked above, I agree that there isn't a huge leap in detail from one to the other, but I've never once seen such a hyper-detailed pic of the VF-17. I've seen all of Macross 7, and believe me when I say it's NEVER looked like that on the screen. The pic of Alto's -25 you linked looks pretty much like it did in the show, so shouldn't you post a pic of the -17 from the show? I found this...in Milia colors to show off the lack of detail. Even then, I don't think the actual animation model had this much detail.
Anyway, I advise you not to read so much hate into my disappointment with the -25. And as for "stirring up crap"? Hahaha...c'mon now! I've posted my points as clearly and logically as I could. Half the time, you never responded to my points and just called me "grandpa" or claimed I wanted you "off my lawn". I have 20/10 vision, belong to a basketball league, and ask the local guys: I'm the definition of a social butterfly! Hardly "grandpa"! ;)
On the other hand, the other half of the time, you've responded with nerd-rage fueled with otaku minutia such as the Japanese name-dropping...people I've not only never heard of, but couldn't care less to know. I'm not an otaku; this doesn't help me understand your position. And all for what? Just because I'm not a fan of something you are?
At the end of the day, it's cool if we agree to disagree. You clearly like the VF-25...I clearly don't. Let's leave it at that.
Ok, let's agree to disagree. But I have to say one thing, the head is usually between the shoulders :p
Hehe...as for heads being between shoulders, just keep in mind I collect crap like this:
Is fighter mode unable to be displayed on the stand with the bottom (ventral?) fin/wing extended?
It can be displayed with the radar fin extended just fine.
MACROSS will remain MACROSS to all MACROSS/ROBOTECH fans!
I haven't seen MACROSS FRONTIER, yet but the design looks very cool especially the fighter mode. The gerwalk mode is horrible and it can't even stand on its display base - what a shame. This is something I never expect and never accept from a Japanese company, especially if that company is BANDAI.
Some minutes ago I too had Sanjeev's problem as I couldn't make out where the Battroid head was. One thing which made the original MACROSS appealing was the not-so-complex mecha designs. This reminds me of Koutetsu Jeeg and Koutetsu Shin Jeeg, the former being still the most loved design (as opposed to the new one) here in Europe.
Classic robots rule!!!!
Maybe the VF-1 was less "busy" than the VF-25, but remember that everything in SDF Macross was done by hand. I'm sure that the VF-1 would have been greeblied to a fare-thee-well if the production schedule had allowed it. (Kawamori's line art is certainly detailed enough.)
Also, it might just be this particular paint scheme; the "Alto" VF-25 is easier to understand, since it's mostly white. This one looks like a refugee from Clown Prison.
I agree that it's a shame they wimped out on the Gerwalk mode, though. Gerwalk is what Macross brings to the table! There are lots of shows with space robots, and lots of shows (well, some shows) with sci-fi jet fighters, but Gerwalk is uniquely Macross.
Yeah, gerwalk is unique! Except for those other shows that use it, like Orguss!
This could be a really awesome toy if the fixed the cursed Gerwalk, tighten the armour and make it perfect transformation. If they redesigned the thigh-knee area abit, as well as add a sliding/lever mechanism to the shield, that could be possible.
Waiting for the ver. 2.0, hopefully there will be such a thing.
Despite not watching the anime, I still kinda want it.
Thank you Josh for reviewing it. Too bad about the armor not fitting on in some places.
I'm sure HLJ will eventually put it on sale. That's the only way I'll get it.
Thanks for the review, even though it does have issues none of them are a problem for me. All I see is a gorgeous sharp machine that will provide an awesome splash of colour in my display case.
Ha, you guys take your toys seriously. The design is kind of modern generic, but I still like it and fantasize about owning it. Couldn't care less about gerwalk mode and I love robots that look like they're made out of candy. Mmm, saltwater taffy.