Tag Archives: kickstarter

Plunderlings Raider Fwush

Enter: The Fwush!

When I first came across the Kickstarter drive for a series of action figures called Plunderlings I was almost instantly smitten. The little impish creatures reminded me of some characters I used to doodle as a kid. In my mind, they look a lot like what I used to draw, but given I was much younger and definitely an amateur artist they probably looked far more crude. A similar aesthetic was in place though: short, big ears, big smiles, a bit devilish in disposition. I definitely never envisioned my goblin-like creatures as pirates though, and I was tempted to back the project.

I did not. I basically convinced myself I didn’t need anything like that. I also let my kid see them and I was curious if he would have a reaction to them, thinking it might be fun for the two of us to collect something together, but if it isn’t a Pokémon he doesn’t care much. The Plunderlings were funded, and eventually released early this year to quite a bit of praise in the toy community. The little devils were a tad pricey though, and I used that as justification for passing. Only when they sold out and became expensive on the secondary market did I change my mind, because I’m an idiot. Well, it was that and I found out a particular figure named Fwush was inspired by the toy community over at http://www.thefwoosh.com which I thought was really neat. I’ve been a member there since 2006 and was probably a lurker for a good while beforehand and it was just kind of cool to see a shout out like that. I wanted to at least grab that character, and I came close on a few occasions via Big Bad Toy Store, but it always sold out too quickly. Eventually, I gave in to eBay to erase my FOMO, but hopefully I didn’t just replace it with buyer’s remorse over paying above MSRP.

The top of the “crate” provides for a look at the alternate heads and hands, but doesn’t provide much of a look at the accessories.

Lone Coconut is new to the toy making community and Plunderlings is apparently the brand they’re going to sink or swim with. The little creatures are smartly designed from a manufacturer’s perspective as the company is basically selling the same figure over and over. Each Plunderling shares almost an identical body with one another. About the only different appears to be in the shorts or pants each features and some minor differences with the ears. Otherwise, the heads, hands, arms, etc. are largely the same. How the company distinguishes each character from one another is with accessories and paint. They come in a variety of colors that basically span the entire color spectrum and they have a bunch of optional parts to enhance their look. Some are dressed like pirates, others are more feral, and some are just plain different like the golden idol. A lot of the parts, like belts and shirts, fit over the main body and are theoretically interchangeable if you’re not afraid to pop some limbs off while the masks and hats are held in place by magnets on each figure’s head. It gives the line a customizable quality, though based on what I’ve seen it looks like most collectors largely leave them as-is as opposed to mixing and matching. They’re packaged in cute little crates with the figure positioned inside its own mouth. The package is a perfect cube, 5x5x5″, with a second window on top showing off the extra heads and hands. Once the product is removed, there are paper ears inside the box that can be slipped into the sides of the crate to really make an interesting statement on your shelf. Great, another box I can’t bring myself to toss!

I love that brilliant shade of blue.

Fwush, being inspired by The Fwoosh, is a bright blue. He’s one of the raider Plunderlings and has some tattered, canary yellow shorts with a rope belt tied around his waist. First off, if you don’t immediately fall in love with the Plunderling design then this line probably isn’t for you. I, as explained in the first paragraph, very much like the aesthetic of these guys and the blue tone only enhances that. Without the hat, he’s about 3 and 3/4 inches tall with ears that stretch out to next week. The head on these guys is pretty large relative to the torso, while the legs and arms are a bit long too. The forearms on these guys are chunky as they basically lack wrists and they have some serious cankles going on. The paint is pretty clean and there’s some darker blue, or purple, used to shade the inside of the ears and some of the musculature. These guys are little, but they’re pretty shredded everywhere except the abs because a little belly just adds to the cuteness. They also seem to have a really droopy butt, which is kind of funny. The figure does have peg holes on its feet, though it really doesn’t need them as he stands very easily given the size of those feet. I may have bought this off of eBay, but it was a brand new and sealed figure that even came with some bonus, Kickstarter, stretch goals. Out of the box, I did have some paint flaking as I worked him out, but nothing that left behind an ugly white spot or anything. There is a message printed inside the box from Lone Coconut recommending these be heated gently to break them in so they obviously expected some stuck joints.

Mr. Saggy Buns.

Lone Coconut was able to pack a fair amount of articulation into each Plunderling, even with them being small in stature. Fwush features a ball-hinge at the head that sits well and provides terrific range. It’s definitely the most expressive part of the figure as he can look up, down, rotate, and tilt like mad. The shoulders are ball-hinged and the elbows are just single-hinged. They swivel, but I can’t get them to bend as far as 90 degrees. The hands peg in and are on hinges with the open hands being horizontally hinged and the gripping hands vertically hinged, a nice little attention to detail I actually wasn’t expecting. There is a diaphragm joint that feels like a ball joint. The figure can bend back pretty far, but doesn’t come forward much. There is a little tilt and swivel there, but he doesn’t seem to want to twist very far and I’m not going to push it since I don’t have a major retailer backing this purchase. The legs connect on simple ball joints and they’re pretty limited. The figure can kick forward fine, but the legs don’t lift out very far to side or kick back far because of the butt mold. The knees are double-jointed, though I can only get one hinge on each leg to work. On the left leg the bottom hinge will move and on the right it’s the top hinge. Both are pretty tight, but he can achieve a 90 degree bend and I suspect if I applied some heat and got both hinges to work in tandem he’d bend even further. As it is, it’s fine. The feet are on hinges, but they’re shape doesn’t afford much movement there. They do have ankle rockers though, and they work just fine.

Presenting: the stuff.

For a figure that’s less than 4″, I think the amount of articulation is fine. The only area I wish there was more range rests with the hips as I wish I could get him into a really, low, crouch. I’m still pretty satisfied with the poses I can achieve though, and it’s definitely helped by the fact that I only have one figure and not a whole army so I don’t have to seek out variety. I will say a lot of the joints were pretty stuck out of the box, but this does feel like a pretty sturdy figure. I wasn’t too concerned about any breaks as I worked him out, and I didn’t have to resort to heat for anything (though if I want those knees to work properly I’ll definitely have to do something there) to get him going so I’d say it wasn’t too bad. It’s certainly something to be mindful of so don’t go snapping your little imp right out of the box.

You’re in over your head, Turtle Troll Leo.

Little Fwush comes with a decent assortment of extra parts and accessories. Every Plunderling seems to come with three heads: smiling, grinning, and open mouth grin. They pop off and back on rather easily, and the same can be said for the hands. The retail version of Fwush comes with a pair of open hands and a pair of gripping hands. This one also came with the Kickstarter bonus pair of fists. It’s always nice to have fists, but I don’t know if I’ll ever display him with them on. As far as accessories go, Fwush has a bandolier around his chest that could probably be removed if you popped an arm off. In addition to that, he has a tri-corner hat that’s nicely painted and affixes to his dome via a magnet and stays in place well. Fwush also has a pair of weapons to make use of, a stylish scimitar and some sort of slingshot/gun hybrid. It’s basically a crossbow, only with a slingshot instead of a bow. He doesn’t have trigger fingers though, but even if he did the trigger mechanism is too far forward for him to reach, but it looks fine. Both weapons are painted well and I really like the distressed markings on the sword. They’re also easy to get in and out of his hands, though he can’t holster either weapon by default. Included in the box is a little plastic bag with two hooks in it. I initially thought they were earrings, but they actually can peg into one of the two holes on the bandolier to serve as a holster. The problem is, the bandolier is so tight to the figure’s body that it’s tough to get the leverage needed to fit the peg through the hole. And when I did finally get one of the hooks in place, it popped out the second I tried to holster the sword. In the end, they make for better earrings.

Now this seems like a fair fight.

Fwush, and the Plunderlings in general, are cute little action figures that pack just enough articulation and accessories to make them a worthwhile purchase. How much you enjoy a Plunderling is dependent on what you think of the base aesthetic the line provides which actually makes these an easy purchasing decision: you either like what you see, or you do not. In hand, the figure has a nice feel and it checks all of the boxes. It doesn’t necessarily “wow” in any one area, but there’s also few shortcomings. I definitely wanted this particular one because of his look (I love blue) and its connection to The Fwoosh and I wouldn’t mind a few more eventually, but this is definitely not the sort of line I’d be all in on. Of course, if you want this figure you’re kind of out of luck at this point as he’s only available on the secondary market. Lone Coconut, realizing it has a hit on its hand, has opened pre-orders to both Big Bad Toy Store and Entertainment Earth on six designs, but Fwush is not among them. They’re still available though if you’re interested. The only other downside to these figures is they are expensive for what you’re getting. The retailers charge $40 a Plunderling after they initially launched for $30 so the price is not a strong point. You are supporting a new, and small, company by purchasing them though and it’s a company that probably can’t get factory rates like Hasbro or NECA can. The pricing is similar to other small shops though like Boss Fight Studio which charges the same price for its Max figure that’s even smaller in stature than a Plunderling. It is what it is and if you don’t like the price then don’t buy it. I think these guys are pretty fun and Lone Coconut has a hit on its hands. Hopefully they continue to have success and maybe they can get the prices down with larger orders eventually which would really open this line up to kids as well as adults.

He’s certainly a unique addition to the collection

TROGDOR!! The Board Game



You must scream it when reading aloud.

Today marks a first for The Nostalgia Spot – a board game post. Like probably everyone my age, I grew up playing board games. Most of them were terrible. They were either overly simple, but long to finish, like Candy Land and Shoots & Ladders or they were gimmicky and over in five seconds like Shark Attack and Crossfire. Board games felt like the at-home equivalent of busy work: give one to your kids and forget about them for a half hour or so. Good vacation fodder for when you have nothing to do and also a rainy day activity. Video games largely replaced them for me as I got older, but they were always around.

Not all board games were terrible. It’s tried and true, but Monopoly is fine and my family even experimented with a Monopoly night that might have lasted a few weeks. There were also more aggressive games that asked more of its players. I had an X-Men game that was pretty neat and required you to enter rooms inside the mansion and clear them of bad guys. I don’t remember exactly how it worked, but it was something I enjoyed when I could find someone to play with. Hero Quest was a popular one that was basically Dungeons & Dragons light and took a long time to play. I actually don’t know if I ever finished a game of Hero Quest. The one kid who had it always wanted to be that game’s equivalent of The Dungeon Master, and he was a brutal liar. I think we always lost and couldn’t trust he was playing by the rules so every game just ended with an argument.

Board games seem to be enjoying a quiet renaissance these days. From time to time I notice friends and acquaintances having a game night on social media. I had one such night with some cousins though it was mostly silly games eventually just leading to a Cards Against Humanity setting. I have not tried to get into a more complex board game, and maybe that’s just because I was waiting for the right one.


Check out all these contents!

Enter Trogdor:  The Burninater. In the early 2000s, homestarrunner.com was a thing. I first encountered it in 2002 when a friend basically camped out in my dorm room at my computer watching the flash animation over and over. The first one that caught my eye was the Strong Bad email that gave rise to Trogdor. It was ludicrous and quite funny, and after that I started keeping up with it as well. It didn’t take long for me to start hearing about it in class or booming from the speakers of another dorm. The site was popular for much of the early part of that decade and Trogdor would even be included in Guitar Hero and Strong Bad also had his own game for the Wii.

The creators of that website, The Brothers Chaps (Mike and Matt), sort of quietly retired the website. They had their fun and moved on, though on occasion a new video will pop-up. The website is still active and the archives can be plundered and merchandize can still be purchased. You can also find most of the videos on YouTube now as well. Last year, the property returned via a Kickstarter campaign. It was for a board game centered around Trogdor, Strong Bad’s dragon invention. Kaizer from CA wrote in asking Strong Bad to draw a dragon, and a legend was born. After first coming up with something that admittedly sucked, Strong Bad stumbled onto Trogdor utilizing techniques such as consummate Vs and the inclusion of a beefy arm. The video then pivoted to a scene of other characters doing their own interpretation of the character. After Strong Bad burns up Strong Sad’s version that may have been superior, the video then unexpectedly goes into a song all about Trogdor burninating the countryside and all of the peasants, which serves as the basis for the new board game.

trogdor instructions


When I saw the Kickstarter last summer, I had to back it. Almost exactly a year to the day, it arrived. The game was super popular and it took almost no time to fulfill the parameters of the Kickstarter campaign. It’s a collaboration between the Brothers Chaps and James Ernest. It’s a cooperative game that can support 1 to 6 players. The players are to aid Trogdor and his mission is to help him burninate the countryside including all of the peasants and their thatched-roof cottages. The game contains lots of fan service, due in part to the Kickstarter goals being exceeded, and if you’re a fan of the characters you’ll probably like what you see here.


The layout for a hypothetical game scenario.

The game is fairly complicated, but not overwhelming. It’s the type of game where your first play through will be done with the instructions at hand. Your second will go better, and after a few games are under your belt you’ll be off and running. Since it’s cooperative, you’re not competing with fellow players which is a unique approach. I thought maybe there would be folks controlling the peasants or adversaries of Trogdor, but that’s not the case. And it’s in spirit with the original cartoon in which Trogdor and his atrocities are celebrated. We don’t want to oppose Trogdor, but celebrate him!


Trogdor strikes again!

The game is a board game, but it doesn’t actually have a board. Instead, it contains 25 terrain tiles that are laid out in a 5×5 grid. Each card has an image on one side, and a burninated version on the reverse. Some tiles have special properties, and by going this route it accomplishes two things:  Trogdor can burninate the setting and it can be tracked by flipping the tile, and each game can be slightly different depending on the layout of the tiles. One of the tiles contains a mountain, which Trogdor can hide behind. Two contain a cave that are connected so Trogdor can “warp” across the playing field quickly if desired. Cottages that require burninating are placed on specified tiles, and there are some other special ones. Trogdor always starts in the center.


The Trog-Meter represents Trogdor’s health at any given time expressed in peasants. That guy in the corner is bad news, he’s The Troghammer.

The game largely occurs with cards. There are no dice. Before the game begins, each player receives a Keeper card which may or may not give them a special ability to exploit on their turn. There are also item cards and action cards. The action cards dictate the movement of the NPCs and provide Trogdor with the action points he has on that turn. Action points can be used to do things like move and burninate. If Trogdor burns a peasant, the action card provides a movement path for the burning peasant. Any tile he touches he burns before he dies, unless he winds up in the lake in which he’s spared. After the turn is done, the NPCs move. There are knights on the board that harm Trogdor if they at any point share a tile with him. There’s also an archer piece that fires in horizontal directions. And once Trogdor is harmed, a super knight called The Troghammer is unleashed to provide additional chaos. The unused peasants are essentially Trogdor’s health. He starts each game with 4 and if he chomps a peasant he gains health. When a peasant dies, it goes to The Void and is removed from play preventing Trogdor from acquiring more health, but also preventing more peasants from entering the game.


These guys are your enemies. Avoid them at all cost.

When all 25 tiles are burninated, all three cottages set ablaze, and no peasants are on the board the game is over and Trogdor wins. If Trogdor loses all of his health, he gets to rage-quit by going on a rampage with a reasonably high probability of being successful. The game can also end if the players run out of action cards, though I haven’t come close to that scenario in my games. It’s an involved game that’s pretty fun. There’s strategy to employ as one needs to prevent Trogdor from getting hurt, but the limited cards means there’s a de-facto timer on the game too so you can’t play skittish. I haven’t encountered any arguments with fellow players, but I suppose it could get heated in certain settings if some people take things too seriously.


These are your optional Trogdor pieces. Some possess more majesty than others.

Beyond the game itself, there’s a lot here for people who are fans of Homestar Runner to enjoy. The pieces are either made of plastic or wood, depending on the version of the game you backed. I went for the Wingaling level which was the cheaper one and contains painted wood pieces. In addition to the main pieces needed for the game, there are also bonus Trogdor pieces depicting his other forms. There’s the original “S is for Sucks” Trogdor, Coach Z’s interpretation, and even a piece that just says “DAGRON” with the reverse being Homsar’s Toaster’s Choice. This means that before each game you get to select your preferred version of the now timeless character.


Hey! I know these guys!

In addition to the game pieces, there are bonus meeples! The meeples are wooden depictions of the Homestar Runner cast so there’s Homestar Runner himself, Strong Bad, The Cheat, Strong Mad, and so on. I think I had to pay extra to get these, though I don’t remember since everything happened so long ago. These have no necessary purpose for the game, I suppose you could substitute knights and such with them if you want, but they’re a fun inclusion and a logical stretch goal for the Kickstarter. They even included a little baggy for the meeples and a suggested game that could be played with them. Given that they’re little painted pieces, I’m reluctant to do much with them as I don’t want the paint to chip, but there’s entertainment value here if you want it.

If you did not back the Kickstarter, then right now your only option appears to be eBay. Some folks are selling their sets there with gross mark-ups. Given the presence of a “Buy It Soon” option on the website it looks like a regular retail version is to come. It probably won’t have the meeples by default, but maybe they’ll be available for purchase as well. You can even sign-up to be alerted when they go on sale. Once they sell out, I don’t know if there’s any plan to make more so you may want to act fast. Should you choose to take the plunge you’ll end up with a fun game that has a great theme. If you’re a fan of the property then you pretty much owe it to yourself to seek this thing out. And if you have a group of friends that still remember this, then all the better as your game crew is ready to go. Now get burninating – Trogdor demands it!


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