"Hell, it's about time!" - Tychus J. Findlay
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I'm not a huge fan of StarCraft, Blizzard's successful series of real-time strategy video games, having only played the original way back in 1998 and not very well at that. However, I am an immense fan of future sci-fi military, especially super-soldiers decked out in high tech power armor and wielding weapons that could pass as cannons. In that regard, StarCraft's Terran Marines more than fit the bill - the fantastic look of these massive grunts easily earning second place for my "Most Awesome Space Marine Design Of All Time" award (W40K FTW).
Needless to say, when DC Unlimited first unveiled plans for a StarCraft II Terran Marine action figure way back at San Diego Comic-Con 2010 (see our story HERE), I was blown away. But man, oh man has it been an excruciating, nail-biting two year wait. Would the figure ever come out? DC Unlimited kept assuring me at the trade shows that he was still on the way, but after their second assortment of Mass Effect action figures were canceled, I began to lose faith. Finally, after numerous delays, a report in November rekindled my hope. StarCraft II Premium Series 2 slated for release March, 2012. I quickly pre-ordered... and waited a few months more.
I almost didn't shoot packaging photos for Tychus Findlay, my excitement to get my hands on this action figure that high. But I did, and you'll note it's a slick closed window-box presentation with a great view of the figure from the front and even the sides. The bare bones back features photos of the entire StarCraft II figure collection, including the other Series 2 figure: Kerrigan, Queen of Blades (doesn't do anything for me). The Terran Marine comes safely twist tied down on a slide-out plastic tray with his gun stowed to the side. Wire cutters. Snip, snip, snip. Oh yeah.
Evolution of a StarCraft Space Marine Action Figure (Left to Right): Blizzard (1998), Toycom (2003), DC Unlimited (2012)
The first thing that impresses about Tychus Findlay is his size. This robust figure measures a towering 9 inches tall and close to 5 inches wide. On top of that, it's heavy. I haven't held an action figure this hefty in quite some time. Priced at around $30, the Terran Marine is seriously a good deal just in size and weight alone.
The second most impressive thing about this StarCraft collectible is that it is a fully articulated action figure. While many are most likely uttering "no duh," the real shock is that every figure release so far in DC Unlimited's StarCraft series has been unarticulated. Like their World of Warcarft assortment, these figures are essentially great looking plastic statues. Tychus Findlay moves. I'm one that enjoys posing his figures, so while DC Unlimited's choice to suddenly introduce an action figure in the series is odd, I completely welcome it.
Articulation points include a head that can be swiveled slightly left or right (the human head inside the armor), nice and tight ratchet-like ball-socket shoulders, swivel upper forearms, swivel/ hinged elbows, swivel/ hinged wrists, slightly articulated fingers on the right hand only (left is pre-posed in a weapon-firing grip - holds his gun much better this way), slight swivel at the waist, ball-socket/ swivel thighs, hinged knees, and hinged feet and toes. Not too shabby for a hulking 9-inch figure that weighs almost 2 pounds!
Oh, even Tychus Findlay's gold helmet visor flips open and closed. While I love the look of it down, having Findlay's face exposed lends a bit more character to the figure. A shame he doesn't include a stogie.
No cigar, but Tychus does pack his trusty standard issue C-14 Impaler gauss rifle. The weapon features an incredible sculpt, though I was initially put back by its hollow, lightweight plastic construction. Once snug in Tychus' grip, however, the lighter material proves to be quite efficient, allowing the Terran Marine to better fire the rifle without it sagging due to weight.
This does bring me to one small critique: Tychus Findlay's inability to hold his weapon two-handed. Despite all the useful articulation in his arms, Tychus just can't swing one arm over far enough to grab the gun. You can get pretty close, but it looks rather awkward. Still, you can achieve some cool one-handed attack poses with the weapon fully extended or pulled in, raining steel death, while bent at the elbow. Or better yet, have Tychus posed just standing there, gun by his side. No matter how you display Tychus, he looks completely badass.
Last but not least is Tychus Findlay's above average paint apps. While cast in predominately blue plastic, dull grays and swathes of silver are used to replicate weathering and battle damage, as well as lending the armor more depth. Bringing the figure home is the great use of stenciled insignia - the Terran Marine's unit number, "suck it down" scribbled on his chest pointing down to a skull and crossbones and an icon of a sexy woman lounging against a spade, a cool nod to old WWII bomber art. My favorite use of paint are with the hazard stripes on his back, the yellow and black really popping against the blue and drawing your eye in to the intricate equipment they surround. The sculpt on this figure is simply breathtaking.
Two years. That's a long time to wait for a collectible, but in the case of Terran Marine: Tychus Findlay, well worth it. DC Unlimited exceeded my expectations with this figure by leaps and bounds... just the fact that it is a fully articulated action figure is amazing. While I'm biased in my love of space marines, especially the incredible look of StarCraft II's Terran Marine, this figure is truly remarkable in size, sculpt, articulation and paint. $30 for a figure this large and well-made is practically unheard of on the market today.
Those looking to order this figure best hurry, however, as Tychus is already sold out individually at many retailers (really no surprise). RedfordFilms.com has it in-stock priced at $31.95, ToyWiz.com has him at $39.99 and BigBadToyStore.com has it available as part of a Series 2 set with Kerrigan, Queen of Blades priced at $57.99.
Review and Photos by Jeff Saylor