I just received the 3A HALO Spartan Recruit so i figured i do a quick review.
There was ALOT of controversy about the previous 3A release, the Master Chief (MC) . Elbow articulation was lacking, hip articulation was non existent, fingers didn't work properly, he couldnt even grasp his weapon. There were so many problems that 3A initiated a refund for the figure if you were unsatisfied with him.
I took MC apart and found the main reason behind the hip articulation.
*DO NOT TRY THIS AT HOME*
Why Does 3A's MC have non existent hip articulation ?---- Because he skips leg day.
The ratchet joint in the hip was too weak. Just look at the photo below. The 2 red arrows are pointing to the only 2 "Teeth" supporting the ratchet joint. They are SO TINY. SO WEAK. You can hardly see them.
The rubber 1 piece outer - suit was too thick. The suit provided too much resistance the weak ratchet joint coulnt over come this resistance. As a result, every time you lifted his leg, it would automatically come back down. Due to the thickness of the suit, his general leg articulation was non existent. 3A chose aesthetics over function, and this was a disaster waiting to happen.
MC Literally wears pants. The solution to this was to cut the pants to provide more articulation. Soi sliced open MC's groin, it took alot of courage to do it, as a wrong cut and i would ruin the figure.
The results were kinda ok.
Front After modification.
Back After modification.
This very dangerous modification will help with the articulation, but it will not solve the weak joint issue. MC will frequently bend over due to his upper body weight and weak hip.
MC can take a knee after the modification.
Dont mention the fat fingers which were unable to grasp his weapons, or his bicep armour which was made too big, which restricted elbow articulation.
3A HALO MC was a HUGE HUGE FAILURE.
Moving on to the Spartan Recruit. I initially ordered 3 Spartan recruit figures, but i cancelled 1 over fears of another figure disaster on epic proportions similar to MC. Now i regret doing that becuase 3A has improved upon their design where they can and have delivered a solid figure in the Gabriel Thorne/ Spartan Recuit issue.
I should get to the important part. 3A did the same thing as me, Cut up his groin. But they added a black inner suite to improve the aesthetics even though the rubber suit is slit. This is improved articulation by quite a bit. BUT the root cause of the problem, the weak ratchet joint still remains. You will get better hip articulation than MC, but the issue is still prevalent.
3A has improved the bicep armour. I think they improved the elbow articulation by over 100%. My hypothesis is that they used a thinner arm inside the rubber suit, so it has more space to bend.
look at the improvement to the elbow range of movement
He can hold his pistol.
He can hold his rifle at the ready.
He can even melee some aliens.
And YES THE BIG GUN. Unlike MC, Gabriel . Recruit can use all his weapons.
He can shoulder it too. BOOM HEADSHOT
The amazing thing about this release is the number of LED lights there are. SO MANY. TOO MANY TO COUNT. There are all over the place. head, back, legs, arms, torso, chest.
All the lights are powered by 2 batteries in his back. But the light on the right shoulder is powered by a battery placed in the right shoulder Armour.
The button is very cleverly hidden by a flap in his rubber suit. You just push down on that area circled in red and he lights up like a Christmas tree.
The thing i DONT like about the light up effects is.
1. No batteries provided. You have to buy them yourself.
2. The battery compartment is VERY inaccessible. You have to remove the entire back portion of his Armour to access the batteries, and its VERY TIGHT. BE VERY CAREFUL when removing the Armour to access the batteries.
Overall, I would declare this figure as the FLAGSHIP figure of the 3A HALO line up. The tightened joints, improved ( but still lacking) hip articulation, really does make a difference.
I hope 3A doesnt get discouraged and pumps out the other HALO characters.