It’s been a while since I spent some time giving a MegaHouse One Piece Portrait of Pirates figure the in-depth review treatment that it deserved, so I decided to take some time today and write a lengthy review of one of the biggest releases of the past year: the One Piece POP Roronoa Zoro Sailing Again figure! But while he’s my pick for the best New World Zoro figure from any toy company, Sailing Again P.O.P. Zoro is certainly not without his share of problems…
Despite being the first member Luffy selects for his crew and among the most popular and prominent characters in the One Piece anime and manga, for whatever reason toy companies seem to have a hard time capturing Zoro. The Figuarts Zero Roronoa Zoro (New World Ver.) is one of my least-favorite figures from that Bandai line, so I knew I wanted to upgrade to the MegaHouse Sailing Again Zoro.
By default, the POP Roronoa Zoro figure comes posed with his usual grim look etched onto his face, staring seriously at a tough opponent or situation to overcome. The alternative is a battle-ready head with Zoro permanently clutching his sword in his mouth, demonstrating his signature three-sword style. I think MegaHouse did a tremendous job on both heads, and I like them far, far more than I do the heads on the New World Grandline Men or Figuarts Zero Zoro figures.
In addition, the Sailing Again Roronoa Zoro figure has an extra right arm so that he can either have a clenched fist or wield a second or third sword (depending on the head you’re using). This is an important accessory, as it lets you determine exactly what sword-style your POP Zoro figure is going to be in and how prepared for combat he is.
New World Zoro also includes a green figure stand and three removable sword sheathes (and swords). The sword sheathes are accurately decorated and the swords slide in and out of them easily. I had a tough time getting all three sheathes to attach to Zoro’s side at once (it’s a tough squeeze getting them into the loop on his sash), but they look fantastic displayed there. Zoro also fits on and off of his figure display stand smoothly and with no problems.
In one of the most unwelcome surprises of my collecting year, this POP Roronoa Zoro New World figure has the absolute poorest quality control of any MegaHouse One Piece figure I’ve ever purchased.
Even worse, Sailing Again Zoro came with numerous paint scratches fresh from the factory-sealed box. There are glaring white scratches on Zoro’s maroon waist sash, and a big smudge on the back of his left calf.
And yes, I’m 100% certain this is an authentic MegaHouse product and not a bootleg–it’s just the kind of poor quality control you would expect to be from a bootleg instead of a legitimate product. This is not the quality I expect on a ~$100 figure at all.
While not nearly as irritating as the paint defects, I’m also a little perturbed that the POP Zoro figure only has one left arm and no alternate. As the hand is clearly posed to hold a sword, that means Zoro will always be slinging a sword over his shoulder, and can never stand neutrally with all three swords sheathed. It’s not a deal breaker or anything, but it is disappointing that Zoro’s poses have this unnecessary restriction on them that a simple alternate forearm would have avoided.
Overall: This One Piece POP Sailing Again Zoro figure is a bit of a mixed bag. It has a lot more paint defects than I’ve ever had on a One Piece Portrait of Pirates figure before, and it leaves me feeling more the a little cheesed off. Furthermore, I hate that Zoro doesn’t have an alternate left arm, so he’s permanently posed holding one of his swords behind his head. On the other hand, the head sculpt on timeskip Zoro is clearly the best by any company, and I love the way he can sheathe and unsheathe all three of his swords. Overall, the One Piece Portrait of Pirates Sailing Again Roronoa Zoro figure is a well-done figure that is a must for a New World Straw Hats display, but could have used an extra arm and more careful quality control.