Tag Archives: lone coconut

Plunderlings Nomad Goyle & Hatchlings

Another Plunderling has joined the family!

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.

He’s got a hood and cape so he’s basically the Plunderling equivalent of Batman.

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.

The weapon storage for Goyle works much better than it did for Fwush.

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.

The oversized feet help these guys to balance real well.

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.

Aww, they’re so cute!

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.

Not so cute right out of the box.

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.


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 Pok√©mon 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.

Bang?
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

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