There’s been no shortage of different non-articulated One Piece figure and statues over the years, with hundreds of PVC figures of various characters in different scales available. But for those who fancy super-articulated, poseable figures, life was pretty bleak–until last year, when the MegaHouse One Piece Variable Action Heroes figures arrived! The Variable Action Heroes Luffy figure is definitely not cheap, but is he good…? Awwwwww yeah.
As fate would have it, the One Piece SH Figuarts were a total bust and got cancelled forever after just four figures (Luffy, Portgas D. Ace, Nami and Sanji). But half a decade later, MegaHouse has resurrected the dreams of super-articulated action figure lovers with the superior One Piece Variable Action Heroes line!
The first figure in the series was released in early 2015: Monkey D. Luffy (alongside a Trafalgar Law figure, of course). Luffy cost between $80-$100 US, depending on where he was imported from. While that’s a lot of money, I’m okay with the price because it allowed MegaHouse to produce a 100% unique sculpted mold with loads of articulation and accessories.
MegaHouse includes a generous amount of extras with this Luffy toy, including three face plates, two Straw Hats (one to be worn on hat and one to hang on Luffy’s back), three pairs of interchangeable hands, and two sets of hair (one for hat-wearing and one for not).
The paint deco on this figure is outstanding: the bright colors are all applied with the utmost care, and the color scheme is a perfect match for Luffy’s onscreen appearance in the One Piece anime. This is probably the best-colored “anime Luffy” figure that I’ve ever seen!
Of course, this would all be meaningless if this figure failed at its primary purpose in being created: being a super-articulated toy that can be posed in a multitude of ways. Well, I’m pleased to say that this is easily the best-articulated Monkey D. Luffy figure that I have ever seen!
Luffy has an insane amount of articulation, including a ball-jointed head, ball-hinge shoulders and hips, double-jointed knees and elbows, a ball-jointed upper torso, ball-hinge wrists, ankle rocker feet and even a hinged foot for “stepping” poses!
From beautiful paint apps to a healthy accessory count to remarkable articulation, MegaHouse did right by the One Piece fans with this Variable Action Heroes Monkey D. Luffy. But as good as he is, he’s not quite perfect…
Because Luffy’s shirt itself is non-removable and articulated, there’s some funny-looking points on the shirt where it’s articulated.
Bandai Japan didn’t have to deal with this problem, of course, since pre-timeskip Luffy Figuarts’ shirt was sleeveless. The articulation on the shirt doesn’t look bad, but it does look a little weird if you stare at it.
Some of V.A.H. Luffy’s joints are also a bit loose–particularly his fists–which got a little obnoxious when I was trying to get him into perfect poses for this review. Again, not a huge problem, but an annoyance I wanted to mention.
Finally, I would have liked a couple more accessories for this figure, given the hefty price-point of it. Some interchangeable Haki arms and a piece of meat to hold would have fit the bill nicely.
Overall: The One Piece Variable Action Heroes Monkey D. Luffy cost me around $80… and I honestly feel that it was eighty dollars well spent. These One Piece VAH figures absolutely destroy the SH Figuarts One Piece line, and this Luffy looks like he popped right out of the anime. A few of his joints could be a bit tighter and I would have liked some alternate Haki hands, but this figure is a joy to play with just as he is. Highly recommended.