DX Chogokin VF-25F Renewal Ver.

Got this guy during the ordering frenzy over a year ago when it was re-released, paying well over retail on Nippon Yasan. When I received it the box was already busted up as you can see below. I finally decided to open and mess with it. As the previously-reviewed YF-29 shares many similarities with the VF-25 series, I might gloss over some details.

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The box art is the staple image of the Valkyrie on white background. On the back, unlike the YF-29 I have, this one has way more images to make the point across that it’s a completely redone mold.

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The stand has the SMS logo painted.

Fighter mode

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Taking everything out of the usual styrofoam tray here’s how it looks. It’s straight up beautiful – a sleek silhouette paired with a bright, striking colour scheme practicality issues aside. It’s a modern take on the classic VF-1 painted in Hikaru’s VF-1S colours as it appeared in the Do You Remember Love movie.

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One thing that has always bugged me with the VF-25 and VF-1 is the lack of a tailplane on a non-delta wing aircraft. Maybe the small canards on the legs at the back are supposed to perform the same function. I’m not an aircraft engineer. Edit: After a little thinking I’ve concluded that the use of thrust vector nozzles eliminates the need for a tailplane.

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Die-cast feet like its brethren.

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The clear parts around the canopy are in a pale blue.

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Like the YF-29 the back seat can be deployed.

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The variable sweep wings have detents to lock them in one of 4 positions.

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As usual, the intake covers are removable and show some shallow detail.

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Panel lines are molded all over the place.

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On the underside the gun pod is mounted the same way as the YF-29, requiring the wings to be folded up and the legs deployed to gain access to the tabs between the arms. The landing gear is die-cast/rubber as usual.

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Landing gears stowed.

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The display stand is not adjustable.

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Basically a solid Fighter mode as we have come to expect from the renewal toys.

Gerwalk mode

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Gorgeous Gerwalk mode. The transformation is easy to accomplish on mine, and getting the arms out is slightly tricky though still easier than the YF-29 as this guy’s shoulder pads are smaller. However on my figure the sliding mechanism of the die-cast ankle is really loose on the left leg.

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The gun pod is held by an adjustable clip.

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The legs splay very nicely.

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Battroid mode

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Great Battroid mode with the lanky look, while the wing backpack is not as bad as the YF-29. As always, the transformation weakens the die-cast joints especially on the hips.

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The head lasers are made of soft plastic. No spares are given.

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Like its variants it’s advisable to stick some tape on the nose area which is painted to prevent paint chipping when folding the chest over the area.

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In place of the missile pods on the YF-29 this guy has folding side panels for the canards to hide inside. There is some generous molded mechanical detail on the insides.

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The gun pod transforms. The lower half of the barrel has a fragile-looking joint so one may have to be careful.

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The combat knife stores inside the shield.

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Extra hands include a pair of weapon-holding hands, a pair of saluting hands and a pair of fists. I don’t usually use them as the default articulated hands seem adequate for most purposes.

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Unique to the VF-25F is a figure of Alto in his EX-Gear. I believe in the anime/movies the pilots control the Valkyrie while in their EX-Gear, but it’s clearly impossible to fit the EX-Gear-equipped pilot figures into the confines of the cockpit of the toys.

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I tried pulling on the head to see if it was on a double joint but it doesn’t seem like it. Still the current setup provides a wide range of movement.

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The head lasers are on ball joints.

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Unfortunately on my copy the right shoulder joint inside the shoulder pad is totally floppy and I can’t find a way to remove the shoulder pad to tighten the joint. The ball joint connection to the body is also quite loose but that was remedied by unscrewing the swinging part (the part with the 5 black dots on the front) and putting a piece of tape between the ball and the cup.

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Without the stand the waist can kinda rotate in a weird angle.

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The legs don’t really have much range as expected. Again, there is the problem with weakening joints on the hips. The knees bend just over 90 degrees if you extend them. The feet have articulated heels and toes for the purposes of transformation and don’t have much sideways range.

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I mentioned my thoughts in my YF-29 review which mostly applies to this as well. Great toy, fairly solid engineering, prone to chipped paint and loose die-cast joints. I’ve heard good things about the newer releases like the VF-25A which seem to have tighter joints. As the aftermarket value of these things tend to skyrocket, I think the only reasonably-priced variant is the VF-25A. That said I really wish the VF-25S could be re-released in an Armor Pack bundle, though trying to get in orders for any Ozma-piloted unit seems impossible.

★★★★☆

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