Last April I posted a review of the Plunderlings Raider Fwush from Lone Coconut. I was pretty charmed by the little goblin-like creature and found the action figure to be pretty fun. It’s also always a little rewarding to know that in buying such a toy I’m supporting a small shop like Lone Coconut. When I concluded that review, I wasn’t sure what my future with the brand would be. I was happy to have the little blue guy, but did I need anymore? Well, the answer is apparently “Yes” as I’m back with another Plunderlings review and this time it’s the nomadic Goyle.
The Plunderlings line originated as a Kickstarter that was popular enough to get the attention of online retailers like Big Bad Toy Store. When the initial backer amounts sold out, Lone Coconut went back to the factory to place another order for an assortment of characters and that’s when I decided to place an order for Goyle. If you’re new to the brand, all of the Plunderlings are essentially the same. They’re little goblin, or imp, creatures that stand a little over 4 inches tall and are mostly differentiated by the color of their skin. In terms of the two I have, there is no difference between the two in the sculpt aside from Goyle having some slits in his ears. Some have different pants, but that’s largely it. The characters are further differentiated by the accessories they’re outfitted with, and there is a mix and match element at play here, if that’s something you want to do. Some may cry fowl at the blatant reuse of molds which coincide with a fairly hefty price point of $40, but it’s basically what the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles have been doing for years and no one seems particularly bothered by that.
The theming for Goyle is that of a nomad, or rogue. Rogue is the word I keep coming back to with him as he has a removable hood and cape and he’s armed with a pair of short swords. His complexion is gray with some subtle purple shading in places to go with brown trunks and a purple cape and hood. His nails and eyes are painted a glossy black and there’s a little white added to the eyes to give them personality. He’s always sporting a smile no matter which portrait you opt to roll with and all imply a mischievous personality is at play here. He comes in his own themed window box that has optional cardstock ears inside if you like that sort of thing. It’s a cute package and is yet another box I find difficult to dispose of.
What I like about this line, aside from the overall aesthetic of the base figure, is that Lone Coconut opted for magnets when it comes to the clothing accessories. Rather than deal with pegs and clasps everything goes off and on rather painlessly. The cape is just a semi-pliable plastic with a hole to fit over the ball-peg in the neck, so it’s really only the hood that’s reinforced with a magnet here. With the hood, the magnet just adds a little extra stability as it slides over the ears and is a pretty snug fit. Unfortunately, the factory had some issues with the magnets this go-around and they all ended up getting flipped around. This means the magnets won’t work with the first run of figures and the same is true for those accessories with the second run. Apparently, Lone Coconut has posted a tutorial video on how to flip the magnets yourself, but I haven’t sought it out. I have no plans to put the hood on Fwush or the tri-corner hat he came with on Goyle so it’s not a big deal for me, but I can see it being an issue for others more interested in the mix-and-match aspect of the line. There’s also a little hook included in the box that can peg into the cape. Once inserted, this hook can accommodate one of the swords if you don’t want your Goyle to dual-wield.
If you want a full rundown of the articulation, check out the Fwush review I did. I will say, these guys can be pretty tight out of the box, so take care breaking them in. Lone Coconut recommends using heat to get them going, but I never had to resort to that. The trickiest joints for me, with both figures, were the knees. Usually, only one hinge in the double-joint wants to go and getting the other one to work in tandem can be tricky, but not impossible with patience and gentle force. In addition to the hood and swords, Goyle also comes with a black frog or toad. It’s quite glossy and I’m not sure if it’s supposed to be alive or dead. It’s fine. He also has two gripping hands with vertical hinges and two open hands with horizontal hinges.
The reason why I felt I should do another Plunderlings review is not really because I like Goyle (and I do), but because this time I picked up some Hatchlings to go with him. Lone Coconut sells these direct, but they’re really an ingenious idea. The Hatchlings are essentially two, headless, bodies designed to be Plunderlings who just hatched (apparently they’re an egg-laying species). The little bodies are slightly crouched with ball-hinge joints at the shoulder and a big ball-peg in the neck. Aside from that, they’re non-articulated. They come with a set of fist hands that can be used with a regular Plunderling or with a Hatchling body and they’re color-coordinated to an existing Plunderling. The purpose of these little guys is to give you some place to put your extra heads and hands. Between one two-pack of Hatchlings and one Plunderling figure, you end up with three sets of hands and three heads. This way, each head and hand set have a place to go and it’s a fun way to make use of parts that otherwise end up in a box or drawer. The heads pop on easy enough and since it’s just a ball-peg you get a lot of range right there. The hands are a little tougher to get into the Hatchling mold for some reason, but not impossible. Now I have a trio of gray-colored Plunderlings on my desk! Currently, Lone Coconut is only selling Hatchlings that match the figures they recently made available again and each set costs 10 bucks.
Plunderlings are turning into quite the fun little line. I say “turning into,” but all of this stuff was already available to those who backed the project originally so it is old news for them. Currently, six varieties of Plunderlings are available to buy now, with a pair of new ones available for pre-order that have a sea monster thing going on. Lone Coconut has also shown off new models in the line, a tall skinny dude and a big beefy one, that I assume are supposed to release this year. The only drawback to this line is that price point of 40 bucks each. It’s not a price out of whack with some other smaller shops, but a little pricey for something that’s not being licensed from another party. If you like the aesthetic, I think these are fun, little, figures that any collector would enjoy. And if you do grab some, I definitely recommend the Hatchlings set (if available) as it’s modestly priced and makes for a nice addition.
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