#0848: Master Chief




If you’ve been following the coverage from Toy Fair, one of the big things announced was Mattel’s acquisition of the full Halo license. Previously, Mattel had the building blocks license, due to their purchase of Mega Blocks. Now they’ll be handling the figures proper as well, taking the license from current holders McFarlane, who have been doing the figures since Halo 3. That also means another scale change (to 6 inches), which is a bit of a frustrating point. Anyway, I actually do have a couple more McFarlane figures on the schedule to be reviewed, which includes the franchise’s main character, Master Chief.


MasterChief2Master Chief was part of the first series of Halo 5: Guardians figures from McFarlane Toys. He’s one of the main release figures, and is available in all the major places. The figure stands roughly 5 inches tall and has 30 points of articulation. I’m still not sold on the hip joints on these later figures, but Chief manages to have some decent enough movement. Structurally, this figure looks to share most of its parts with the Halo 4 versions of the character. That’s reasonable, since his armor doesn’t appear to have changed all that much between the games. He has a slightly different head, which reflects some damage he has taken to his visor in the meantime. Generally speaking, the quality of the sculpt is downright superb. The detailing is incredibly intensive, which gives the figure a ton of great texture work. About the only complaint I can really think of is the arms, which, like Spartan Fred, seem almost as if they haven’t quite been put all the way together. It’s fine when he’s holding a rifle, but can look odd in a basic standing pose. In addition, there’s the usual complaint about the lack of trigger fingers, but at this point I barely even notice that. Chief’s paint is as much a work of art as the sculpt of the figure. He captures the basic colors of the Chief pretty well, but what really sells the figure is the addition of dry-brushed silver on many of the armored surfaces, which helps to sell Chief’s armor as being sufficiently worn-in. Master Chief includes an assault rifle (with a cool customized deco) and a magnum, both of which can be stowed, either on his thigh or his back.


Well, I had a pretty sizeable Halo collection, and absolutely no Master Chief figures in it. That seemed wrong somehow. I ended up finding him at a Target I stopped by while on a shopping trip with Super Awesome Girlfriend and her best friend. I’m actually really happy with this figure, and I admire the level of detail included. It’s a shame McFarlane won’t be getting to do a full selection of Halo 5 figures.

Guest Review #0017: Master Chief & Cortana




Heeeeeeeyooooo! This is the first guest review done by the mysterious Super Awesome Girlfriend, who is way too supportive, that Ethan keeps talking about. Yes, that’s right folks; I’m a real girl! I honestly don’t know much about minimates, or this particular line of figures. So unfortunately, I won’t be able to give you any of that background information because action figures aren’t really my forte. Instead, I can give you a very brief background on the actual game characters since gaming is my guilty pleasure!


These figures were released in the 4th Toys R Us exclusive series. The series was based on Halo, the popular gaming franchise created by Bungie. The set includes characters from all the games, including some of the main alien characters, the Rookie from ODST, and even the Hayabusa armor from Halo 3 multiplayer (you know, the one that took hours to get because you needed to collect the bloody skulls throughout the game to unlock the individual pieces. And yes, I did get the armor, though it took me forever to get). This particular two pack includes Master Chief and his AI Cortana.


Chief&Cortana2As most people know, Master Chief is the main character of the Halo franchise, without him and his very recognizable voice the game would not have been as successful. He is the playable character for all of the main games, Combat Evolved, Halo 2-4, and is briefly mentioned in Reach and ODST. He’s the mysterious masked badass that defends humanity with an assault rifle, some grenades, and a witty AI companion, Cortana.

The figure is roughly 2 ½ inches in height and he has 12 point of articulation. This figure is based off of the design from Halo: Combat Evolved, which is personally my favorite. According to my boyfriend, this figure has the standard minimate body with unique arms and add-ons for his helmet, torso, belt, thighs, boots, and hands. The figure successfully captures Chief’s design in CE, which is really refreshing because some of the other figures didn’t transfer very well. Now, the figure isn’t flawless but the flaws are pretty amusing, so it’s okay. Master Chief doesn’t have two left feet (though we never see him dance…) but he does have two left thighs, making one leg taller than the other. His right leg is literally the left one but switched, so he has a butt plate on the front of his leg. But other than that little hiccup, the figure is well painted and very satisfying. The Minimate also comes with a well recreated version of the original assault rifle and a really tiny Cortana on a chip that can clip into his hand!


Chief&Cortana3Since Combat Evolved, Cortana has been a constant companion for gamers as they played the games, guiding you in the right directions and giving you constant and witty dialogue. In the story, she wasn’t made for the Master Chief, but under the circumstances their paths crossed and their relationship grew as they took down the Covenant and the Flood together. Basically, there is no Chief without Cortana. Period.

Minimate Cortana is modeled after what I believe is the Halo 3 design. She is roughly 2 ½ inches with 14 points of articulation. According to Ethan, she has the standard Minimate body, which has a painted female body, with removable hair. The figure doesn’t have any noticeable flawless, like two left thighs, but she doesn’t have anything really unique about her except for her stand. Since Cortana is an AI, she is usually stored in a data chip that is stored in the back of Chief’s helmet. For this figure, her stand is the data chip which actually has pretty good detailing, not a lot but enough to be satisfying.


I got these Minimates on our one year anniversary, which was Christmas Eve. I knew that I was getting figures this season, because Ethan wanted me to join the guest reviewing family, but I was really touched that these were my first. If you haven’t noticed already, I am a gamer. I love video games and I have been playing for more than a decade now. Halo: Combat Evolved was the first serious game that I played on the original Xbox when I was six or seven with my older brother. I have been a fan of the series for a long time and I stuck with it, and will probably continue to stick with the story until 343 Industries really piss me off. I’ve told Ethan a few times about how I got started with video games, and Halo, so I wasn’t surprised by what he got me. Instead, I found it poetic that the first figures that I got where the characters from the first game that I played that really got me into gaming. I grew up with Master Chief and Cortana, and I find it sweet and a little surprising about the things that Ethan remembers.