Bandai SH Figuarts R2-D2 figure review – Star Wars: A New Hope

I was really on the fence about getting the SH Figuarts R2-D2. I’ve loved the human figures, but really questioned the need for a droid update when my Star Wars Black Series R2 was just fine. It took a pretty good deal for me to finally plug the trigger. Let’s just say I won’t question Figuarts again.

Packaging:  Basically the same as every other packaging. The packaging is a little deeper and wider. The setup actually helps make R2 far more visible than some of the other figures.

I like the side picture as it makes for a nice bookend presentation stacked up along other packages. The back features six pictures showing off the various accessories and features. This would be more useful if Figuarts included some English text in here as well.

sh figuarts r2d2 figure review - wide pic

Likeness:  Again, I was perfectly satisfied with my SWB R2, but the Figuarts blows it out of the water on every level. The sculpting of the panels is incredible. Hasbro didn’t shortchange that on their version, but everything looks so much more distinct and realistic.

This is one of those instances where you can’t fully appreciate the Figuarts figure until you put it side by side with the Star Wars Black version. Once you do, there’s no comparison. Hasbro did a commendable job getting all of the details down, but the Figuarts version makes them stand out more. R2 has a middle resting leg to help with posing.

sh figuarts r2d2 figure review - with luke skywalker

Scale:  R2 should come just a little taller above Luke Skywalker’s waist and the scaling is perfect. Hasbro’s figures comes up much shorter to the Figuarts figures.

sh figuarts r2d2 figure review - hanging with luke skywalker

The Figuarts R2 has more width and doesn’t look as streamlined. I was really impressed with the size as I could see how Kenny Baker would fit inside this shell as opposed to the slender R2 figures that make him too thin.

Paint:  Figuarts went with a slightly dingy white for R2. For most of Star Wars, R2 was very grimy so the duller white is more appropriate. Some scruff marks and caked up dirt would have been even more accurate, but keeping the figure clean was smarter as it doesn’t make R2 too tailored to any particular film. That way you can pose him with your prequel figures as easily as the Original Trilogy characters.

I really like the sheen of the silver and the metallic blue used throughout. I’m blown away by the paintjob on the lamp as the lighting always hits it so it has that half black appearance regardless if you change the color from red to blue. Hasbro tried that as well, but the dull red used didn’t quite look as nice.

sh figuarts r2d2 figure review -front lights

The back lamp can change from gold, green, silver and red.

sh figuarts r2d2 figure review -rear lights

Articulation:  I’m not quite sure what articulation folks would need here besides basic rolling, a little twirling of the head and good back and forth movement with the legs. You can do all that as well as turn the main canister area horizontal, not that I ever recall R2 doing that in any of the films.

sh figuarts r2d2 figure review - all arm attachments out

You can open the front panels for attachments and fixing broken down piece of junk spaceships. An open head panel to hold a lightsaber is the only missing component.

sh figuarts r2d2 figure review - arm attachments

R2-D2 has:

  • head
  • legs
  • third leg
  • feet
  • panels

sh figuarts r2d2 figure review - with padme and obi-wan kenobi

Accessories:  R2 doesn’t need a lot of accessories save two back pegs, which apparently were used to cover Baker’s legs. I doubt I’ll attach them often, but it’s a neat bonus for complete screen accuracy.

sh figuarts r2d2 figure review - instructions

Worth it?  I grabbed R2 for $43. That’s slightly more than double the SWB price. Having him in hand and comparing with the SWB version, I see and appreciate where that money went as this is the definitive six-inch scale R2.

sh figuarts r2d2 figure review - with kneeling luke skywalker

Rating: 10 out of 10

No need to look at any other six-inch R2-D2 figures any more. This one is the definitive version and doesn’t seem likely to be topped.

sh figuarts r2d2 figure review - with luke skywalker, han solo and chewbacca

Where to get it?  I found R2 at Hobby Link Japan, which still has him in stock. Or you can get him right now from Amazon.com.

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