My friend Alexx over at Toys and Tomfoolery recommended the Tenkai Knights a while back, and I finally got around to picking some up. I grabbed a few sets before Christmas, but I'm waiting for some time to take pictures of them as I build them, so I can do a proper spotlight on them. In the meantime, I found some blind bagged ones that I never knew about, so these are the first Tenkai Knights I've actually tried out. How are they, you ask? Well, I'll tell you.
In case I haven't driven the point home yet, I'm a sucker for blind-bagged toys. I mean, I hate getting doubles, but the excitement that not knowing who you're going to get is pretty fun. And as far as doubles go, that's less of an issue with series because it's made up entirely of troop builders! I tend to be more about the individuals than the troopers though, so I'll probably just mix and match parts and make my own characters.
I've skimmed through the Tenkai Knights website and I've read the basic rundowns of each character, but in my skimmings I haven't seen anything that talks about the Kindoh. I have a feeling they're bad guys, but I can't say for sure. What I do know is that I always cheer for the heroes more than the villains, and both the bags I randomly pulled have given me... the villains. Maybe.
For those new to Tenkai, the line features transforming Lego-type blocks that can "shape-shift" into troopers, creatures, and weapons. Each figure comes with gear and accessories to fully set them up for battle. Or creativity! These building lines always push for creativity, right? I'm gonna go with battle, though.
The first figure I ever pulled has mangled armor! Right up there in the corner... something... happened there. I tend to focus on things like that, but just like this armor, I'm not too bent out of shape over it (see what I did there?). Armor gets dinged up, so that's how I see this.
Anyway, the figures themselves come out of the package in block form. Since I've only really looked at character bios so far, I don't know how the shape-shifting blocks come into play with the whole Tenkai story, but it's already working on my imagination. I can see these characters as techno-organic beings, and they can shape-shift to build and rebuild everything around them. Need buildings? The builders will shape-shift into the pieces you need, even forming the buildings themselves with their bodies, playing their parts until something else is needed elsewhere. Their cities would constantly be changing because the pieces go to where they're needed at the time. I know they can combine into space ships and tanks and stuff. Sounds crazy? I know! It's great.
This is the Kindoh Quadrax. When this line was recommended to me, I thought the troopers were interesting, but the creatures really caught my attention. They were just that much weirder, and weird is key for me.
The Quadrax appears to be some kind of sabre-toothed... thing. It's a different creature than the Hos and Sho from the regular packs, so it's nice to see that the blind-packs didn't just give us repaints.
I think the Quadrax is a fine addition to the creature collection, I just wish it had some feet. The Sho comes with feet, so I know the parts exist. It just feel like that fanged face needs some clawed feet to complete the look. And now that I'm really staring at the face, are those even sabre-teeth? It looks like those sabres are part of his cheeks, not his mouth. He still has some obvious fangs, but if those aren't sabre-teeth than he needs the claws even more! That's the nice thing with this line though. If you want to add things like that, you should be able to. You just need the right pieces.
The humanoid half of my purchase is the Kindoh Trooper. Like I said, I don't know if the Kindoh are supposed to be villains (the website only mentions the evil "Corrupted", as far as I can tell), but he sure looks like a villain.
Did you know Darth Maul went on to become a Kindoh Trooper? Neither did I, but there he is. Seriously though, I do like the look of this figure. Often times a figure will look better either with their armor on or off, but this guy looks good either way. The trooper bodies are all identical, sculpt-wise, but the added color details and armor make for endless possibilities for characters down the road, and it doesn't feel monotonous at all.
The shape-shifting is pretty easy, which is great for me since I suck at transforming toys. I found it initially hard to open the blocks up that first time, but once you get it going everything moves much easier.
This trooper comes with a helmet to protect his blockhead, and a spear. Actually, when I first saw his weapon, I thought it was a torch and that's still how my brain tends to think about it. I guess it could be like a speartorch or something, where the blade is also on fire. I can work with that!
The Kindoh Trooper serves his troop building purpose well, but he could just as easily work as an individual character. He just has that "I am me" look about him. Stick him on his Quadrax to mow down the Tenkai Troopers and let him be all the "me" he can be. Or all the "him" he can be. You get what I'm saying.
So while I just found these guys the other day, I bought my first Tenkai stuff back before Christmas. They're just sitting down in the toy room, still sealed in their boxes. I'm loving these blind-bagged guys, so it's getting me excited to dig into my other sets and see what they do for my imagination. I just want to take the time to photograph the whole building process and spotlight them in the way they need to be shown. I also want to get some of the Tenkai Troopers from this blind-bagged series and make my characters for them. That yellow and blue one... he calls to me...