#0899: Spartan Buck

SPARTAN BUCK

HALO 5: GUARDIANS (MCFARLANE)

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Well, as sad as it is to admit, the master Halo license has been passed to Mattel, bringing an end to McFarlane Toys’ eight year run with the franchise.  McFarlane isn’t quite done, though, as they had one last series of Halo 5 figures already in production when the changeover was worked out.  So here’s their last hurrah.

Spartan Edward Buck, the focus of today’s review, was the one member of Agent Locke’s Team Osiris that wasn’t new to game players.  He first showed up as an ODST in Halo 3: ODST (shocking, I know), and he’s had a few other cameos throughout the series, before making the jump to a Spartan.  In Halo 5, Buck ended up being a replacement for Gabriel Thorne, whose actor wasn’t available to do the game.  Lucky Buck!

THE FIGURE ITSELF

SpartBuck2Spartan Buck is part of the second (and final) series of Halo 5: Guardians figures from McFarlane Toys. He’s the only unique character in the series, which will no doubt prove frustrating to those hoping for Linda and Vale to finish up the game’s main teams.  The figure has 32 points of articulation and stands 5 ½ inches tall.  There seems to have been a gradual creep upwards in scale on this line, as Buck ends up being the largest of the Halo 5 Spartans, despite not being noticeably larger in the game.  Also, he’s got the somewhat questionable hip joints that all the post-Halo 4 figures have gotten, and his general mobility is a bit limited.  However, he still moves on par with the rest of the Halo 5 figures.  Buck wears the Helljumper armor in the game, which is in many ways meant to be a call back to the ODST design (the  name “Helljumper” is even a slang term for ODSTs in the game’s universe).  The armor’s clunky and made to take a beating, just like the ODST armor, and I like the design a lot.  Since we haven’t seen the Helljumper armor before, Buck’s sculpt is new(though it’s mostly shared with the basic Spartan Helljumper figure from this same series).  The sculpt does a pretty nice job of translating the game design into plastic form; it’s a little rough around the edges in a few spots, but there’s a ton of really awesome detail work present here.  Buck gets a knife/sheath on his shoulder and a pair of pouches on his right calf to help set him apart from the basic Helljumper.  Buck’s paintwork is overall pretty great.  There are a few sloppy spots here and there, but not enough to distract from the good.  The best work is definitely on the insignias on his shoulders, both of which are nice and sharp, as is Buck’s name tag.  Buck is packed with a Hydra Launcher and a standard issue Magnum.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

While out and about, I stopped at an out-of-the-way Walgreens, which netted me not only the Walgreens-exclusive Yellow Daredevil, but also this guy.  When Buck was absent from the first series of Halo 5 figures, I was a little bummed, since he’s by far my favorite design from the new game.  I was quite happy to see him show up in the second assortment, but now that he’s out, his arrival is a bit bittersweet.  He’s not a perfect figure, but he’s good enough to make me sad that we won’t be getting the rest of the teams.  Now, I guess all I can do is wait and see what Mattel does with the license.  Yay.

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#0893: Buck (ODST)

BUCK (ODST)

HALO HEROES (MEGA BLOKS)

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A little over a year ago, I wrote my very first Halo-themed toy. It was an ODST, which, as anyone who has followed my Halo reviews can tell you, is one of my very favorite designs/concepts from the games.  That particular toy came from the Mega Bloks Halo line, possibly the cheapest and most expansive collection of Halo figures on the market. The figures are offered with larger building sets, as well as in blind packaging, but very recently, they started offering them in more conventional blister-style packaging, under the new heading Halo Heroes. Characters from throughout the franchise are being offered. Today, I’ll be looking at one of the older characters in the set, ODST Buck.

THE FIGURE ITSELF

BuckODST2Buck was released in Series 1 of the Halo Heroes line. The figure is about 2 inches tall and has 16 points of articulation. In case the name didn’t clue you in, this particular Buck is based on his appearance in Halo 3: ODST, where he serves as the commanding officer (well, until ONI Dare butts in) of the group of ODSTs that serve as the story’s protagonists. Buck’s design is a slight variation of the basic ODST design, and as such, this figure uses a lot of the same pieces as the previously reviewed copper ODST from the Drop Pods series. He has a slightly tweaked head (which adds an antenna to the side of the helmet) and his chest armor also has an extra nub so that his knife can be mounted there. The rest of the figure is sculpturally identical to the other ODSTs. The basic sculpt is pretty nicely done; the proportions are a fair bit less skewed than other minifigures. That can look really strange for some characters, but it doesn’t look bad on a mostly armored character. His torso, shoulder, and thigh armor is all removable, should you feel the need to do that, but the figure definitely looks better all armored up. Buck’s paint is more detailed than a lot of the Halo Mega Bloks; it’s an accurate depiction of his look from the game, and he matches up quite nicely with the previously released Rookie minifigure. The actual application isn’t super clean, but it’s certainly passable. Buck includes an assault rifle, a knife, and a three-piece display stand. The rifle is fully painted, which is an awesome change, and the new stand is definitely an improvement on the standard block prior figures have had.

THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION

Buck was a rare surprise find. I was at Walmart, picking up some stuff (after being snowed-in for four days in January), and just happened to see the small display with these figures. Obviously, I wasn’t going to turn down another ODST, right? Buck’s not super different from the prior ODSTs I’ve gotten (in fact, he’s nearly identical to the Rookie), but I like the character, and the few small changes and extra details really make this guy feel worth it.

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