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SODO Sundays – November 3rd, 2019

Hello, tokusatsu community! It’s Joshua Perry here to talk about SODO figures on my fortnightly series, SODO Sundays. Today, more Zero-One to finish off AI-02!

Kamen Rider Zero-One

The final two figures for AI-02 have been revealed! SODO’s first female Rider since Ex-Aid’s Kamen Rider Poppy will be Kamen Rider Valkyrie in her Rushing Cheetah form. This figure is a female mold of the Vulcan body and will come with the same Shotriser accessories. The stickers on this figure will mainly be used to fill in the black details on the shoulder pads and other areas of the cheetah armor.

The last figure in the wave will make AI-02 the largest SODO set to date with 9 boxes. This figure is Zero-One’s Freezing Bear form. This form also features the first time SODO will have a pre-applied sticker on its head and have special transparent plastic parts to replicate the effect from the show.

AI-02 releases at the end November with Zero-One Flaming Tiger and Freezing Bear, Vulcan- Punshing Kong, Valkyrie- Rushing Cheetah, and Grease- Perfect Kingdom.

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As always, you can watch SODO Sundays Season 3, Episode 5 here:

That’s it for this edition of SODO Sundays Season 3! Stay tuned for the next edition on both Toku Toy Store News and YouTube channel.

 

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SODO Sundays – September 1st, 2019

Hello, tokusatsu community! It’s Joshua Perry here to talk about SODO figures on my fortnightly series, SODO Sundays. Today, Kamen Rider Zero-One begins!

Kamen Rider Zero-One

The first figure in Kamen Rider Zero-One’s SODO line has been revealed! His base form, Rising Hopper will be the first figure out in A1 01, which will release in October. SODO is changing it up this time as this figure does not feature all that many stickers!

More Zero-One figures were teased in a SODO Promo that featured more of A1 01 as well as some for AI 02. The promo also features all of the main Riders who have made it into SODO thus far, Den-O, Decade, Double, OOO, Ex-Aid, Build and Zi-O.

Kamen Rider W

The set Kamen Rider Eternal is being released in has been revealed. It’ll be in a third Premium Bandai Double SODO Chronicle Set. This set will be out in January 2020 and will feature Kamen Rider W’s CycloneJoker Gold Xtreme form as well!

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As always, you can watch SODO Sundays Season 3, Episode 1 here:

That’s it for the final edition of SODO Sundays Season 3! Stay tuned for the next edition on both Toku Toy Store News and YouTube channel.

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SODO Sundays – June 16th, 2019

Hello, tokusatsu community! It’s Joshua Perry here to talk about SODO figures on my fortnightly series, SODO Sundays. Today, lots of Zi-O and Den-O once again.

Kamen Rider Zi-O

The Dai-SODO Set that is releasing has been officially revealed. Consisting of Zi-O, Geiz, and Woz this set will feature better paint details and plenty of stickers for added detail. A sticker sheet will be included for the option of giving the Ridewatch holder any Ridewatch seen in the show. Another added feature is the clear plastic visors of the figures that give off a glowing effect when light shines through them. Woz’s Zikan Despear is also longer in this release than in his original release.

Zi-O Set 10 has also revealed it will have the next two Decade Armors. Based on OOO Tajador Combo and Ghost Grateful Damashii. Each of these forms will feature a base body in the Set lineup with Set 10 including one Decade Armor box with the stickers to make each; so, to display both forms, a second Decade Armor set would be needed.

SODO Ride Plus 2, releasing in August, has revealed most of the full lineup, consisting of DiEnd, Hattari, and Ginga. The last figure, as well as some of the accessories for this figure, are being left as a mystery. It’s unknown if the identity of the mystery figure will be revealed before release.

The SODO Another Set 1 releasing in July has releases better images of the four monsters in the set. This reveals better where the stickers on the figures are going to be as well as the fact that these figures carry over the hand swapping feature from the main line.

Kamen Rider Den-O

SODO Chronicle Den-O Set 2 has been revealed. The set will have Den-O’s Climax Form, Liner Form, and Wing Form. Unlike the second W Set, this will be a retail release. The Climax Form comes with a box of accessories that allow the form to become the Chou Climax Form as well.

As always you can watch SODO Sundays Season 2, Episode 19 here:

That’s it for this edition of SODO Sundays Season 2! Stay tuned for the next edition on both Toku Toy Store News and YouTube channel.

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SODO Sundays – February 24th, 2019

Hello, tokusatsu community! It’s Joshua Perry here to talk about SODO figures on my fortnightly series, SODO Sundays. Today, the rest of Set 7 and some teases for what’s to come.

Kamen Rider Zi-O

The final figures of Set 7 have been revealed. First up is Oma Zi-O! Teased back around Christmas this figure will finally be releasing in this set. His stand confirms his name as Kamen Rider Oma Zi-O, which is the first time he’s been referred to as an official Kamen Rider.

The other final figure of the Set is Woz’s Futuring Kikai armor. The final future Rider armor Woz has used in the show will also include both versions of Zi-O II’s sword. An extra Woz body from Set 6 will be included in Set 7 for those who don’t own one yet.

A new SODO ad has teased 2 figures not shown before. First was the Zi-O Decade Armor in its Build RabbitTank Sparkling mode. Confirming that we would be getting these armors in the line. Also Cross-Z Evol from the upcoming Cross-Z V-Cinema was also shown. With SODO Set 8 being another featuring Build set this makes a lot of sense to be included in the next set.

This ad also revealed the prototypes for some Another Riders from Zi-O! Another Build, Ex-Aid, Faiz, and Gaim were shown off in the ad. No information on how many they are doing or the way they are to be released yet but stay tuned.

As always you can watch SODO Sundays Season 2, Episode 13 here:

That’s it for this edition of SODO Sundays Season 2! Stay tuned for the next edition on both Toku Toy Store News and YouTube channel.

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SODO Sundays – January 13th, 2019

Hello, tokusatsu community! It’s Joshua Perry here to talk about SODO figures on my fortnightly series, SODO Sundays. Today, Zi-O Set 6 featuring Build and some new YUDO news. 

Kamen Rider Zi-O

The first figure of Set 6 has been revealed. The Double (W) Armor from Heisei Generations Forever is here! Featuring all the details, like the Gaia Memory shoulder pads, this form is perfect to add to the collection of Heisei Armors. Due to space and previous releases, the Zi-O base body will not be included in this set, just the armor.

The EX Time Mazine Set was also shown off. This set will feature the ability to change the Ridewatch face to be Zi-O, OOO, Ex-Aid, or Build.

Kamen Rider Build

As reported before, Zi-O Set 6 will feature SODO Build. The figure to be included in this set will be from Build’s final episode: RabbitDragon! This form will include the Beat Crosser as well as feature painted legs this time around.

Ryusoulger

Listings have popped up that confirms that YUDO will return for a third year for the new upcoming Sentai, Ryusoulger. A set of the main 5 will release in May.

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As always you can watch SODO Sundays Season 2, Episode 10 here:

That’s it for this edition of SODO Sundays Season 2! Stay tuned for the next edition on both Toku Toy Store News and YouTube channel.

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Anniversary Review: Gamer Driver

Mighty Flash! Mighty Back! Mighty Mighty Flashback!

A little over 10 years ago, we were given one of the first Kamen Rider anniversary series. Kamen Rider Decade gave us a look back through ten years worth of Riders, and how their stories evolved the franchise into what it is today. With another anniversary series currently airing, it seems appropriate we take another look back over the years, but this time we look at the Drivers, how they’ve progressed in terms of technology and gimmick, and if they still hold as much charm today as they did back then.

To close out our Anniversary Reviews, we have the Gamer Driver from Kamen Rider Ex-Aid!

Now I’m going to start by saying that I hated this Driver and the series when it first aired. I’m from a time when Riders were dark and broody, with occasional murder and mayhem. It wasn’t until a year after, when Build was ending, that I was bored one day, cleared everything on my to-do list, and thought “it’ll kill an hour or so”.

Three days later, I’d finished the series and all the movies, and had this thing on order…

So there you have it folks! Don’t judge a series by how brightly coloured the Rider is! Or by the fact it has a gaming theme… which actually turned out to be pretty great!

Onto, the Driver. It’s bright green, with shades of pink and trim in silver with black detailing. The Driver features one big handle on one side and a gaping hole on the other. When opening the handle, by pulling it out to the side, you have a big sticker on the inside of it with “GAMER DRIVER” in big spray-painty writing; you can now see what I refer to as the “Rider Window”. Through this window, you’ll see the Rider form inserted into that big hole. This is accomplished by a series of mirrors and a light up Gashat, the main gimmick of the series.

 

The Gashats are game themed gimmicks used to transform into the Rider, and subsequently install add-ons (yay game terminology!). It’s hard for me to describe exactly what the Gashats remind me of… but they’re really quite pretty! Not as pretty as OOO Medals… but what is?

Gashats come in 3 forms:

Standard
Dual
Trophy

Standard ones are the most used, one goes into each slot on the right side of the Gamer Driver, in the left slot will be the Rider form, in the right the add-on. Dual have three forms, one game per Gashat (eg: Mighty Brothers XX), two games per Gashat (eg: Taddle Fantasy / Bang Bang Simulations) or the Mighty Gashats. In all cases, the Dual Gashats (often referred to as Dual Gears) take up both slots. The Trophies are just smaller versions of the Standard Gashats, same functions, but simpler, with smaller “cartridges” on them, in toy terms, they function like SG/Gasha versions, with basic sounds, no lights and bare minimum of Driver interface.

All Gashats work the same kind of way, that being a 3 button interface and a light up “cartridge” that inserts into the Driver.

To start, press the black button, you’ll get the Gashats call out, insert it into the Driver and you’ll hear “Gashatto” (roughly meaning Click and Load), followed by the standard Rider jingle, which everyone gets. After the jingle (“Let’s Game! Mecha Game! Mucha Game! What’s your name?! I’m a Kamen Rider!”), open the Driver by pulling on the handle, you’ll then be greeted by “Gachan! (an onomatopoeic sound for opening) Level up!” and another jingle, along with a lit up Driver as the Gashats light is triggered.

Congratulations! You’re now a Gamer Rider!

To power down, simply close the Driver, you’ll hear it say “Gatchon” (an onomatopoeic sound for closing), now remove the Gashats, you’ll hear “Gashoon” (an onomatopoeic sound for something being removed) and all done!

The two buttons on the opposite side of the Gashat to the black button are triggered by the Driver. Depending on the order they are pressed, you’ll either get the level up sounds for the Driver, or the special attacks.

There are pegs at the back of the Gashat slot on the Driver, two static pegs and two that move. The static pegs trigger the henshin sound as the Gashats are inserted, the other two are triggered when the Driver is opened.

With the Dual Gashats, there is only the one set of buttons on them, so while they take both slots, only one side triggers them. In the case of Dual Gears Alpha and Beta (Knockout Fighter/Perfect Puzzle and Taddle Fantasy/Bang Bang Simulations) the desired game is chosen by twisting the switch on the front before inserting it into the Driver (or in Knockout/Puzzles case, the belt holder, as inserting that Gashat into the Gamer Driver will give you Perfect Knockout).

The sounds all come from the Gashats, so obviously are reliant on battery strength. If you’ve just pulled the tab on a brand new one, expect it to be a LOT louder than one you’ve been Henshining away with for months.

Overall, this Driver rocks; really cant say it any other way. While the colours can be off-putting at first, they’ve really grown on me! From the fear inducing Dangerous Zombie to the cuteness overload that is Tokimeki Crisis, this Driver really caters to most Rider fans. Especially when you throw in all the Legend Gashats that cover all main Riders from Kuuga to Ex-Aid himself, with a special appearance by Ichigo! I mean, really, couldn’t have a Legend gimmick set without Ichigo. Remember, if it wasn’t for him, you wouldn’t be reading this right now!

In terms of downsides, make sure you keep your Driver, especially the Gashat slot clean, if those pegs get gunked up with something (mine was second hand, appeared to have half a pot noodle spilled down there!) things won’t work so well! It can also be quite time consuming to clean out…

As mentioned, when the batteries start going, you’ll notice a real drop off in sound. From my own experience, even keeping a Gashat off to the side, without any buttons pressed, can somehow drain the batteries… so your best bet is to hold on to those battery tabs you always forget to pull out of things, then question why it isn’t working (Be honest, you’ve done that more than once!) and put them back in when not in use or on display.

The number of Gashats can also be a bit daunting, so if you’re a die hard collector, and got to have them all, just be aware, there is the main run of Riders and Upgrades, but there is also Proto, Special Editions with alternate paint schemes (often Chrome effect) and the Trophies. I don’t say this to put you off, just don’t be me and not realise how many would catch your eye.

With the end of this Review, I’m sorry to say, that’s all folks! I don’t physically have any more Drivers to do reviews on…

I could make stuff up if you’d like!

It’s been an absolute pleasure to go through these with you, and really, it gave me an excuse to nerd out a little and play around 🙂

See you next game!

Editor’s note: As Marcus alludes to above, this is the last of the Anniversary Series of Drivers reviews. With the series complete, Marcus has decided to move on from the Toku Toy Store media team. Thank you for the work that you have done for us, Marcus. I’ve personally enjoyed reading your reviews each week for the last two months. You’re welcome back any time should inspiration strike you and you find something that you feel you’d like to write about. All the very best from all of us here at Toku Toy Store!

Did you enjoy Marcus’ Anniversary Reviews? Which article was your favourite? Which henshin device was your favourite? Join the conversation with us on social media!

[Photo Credit: deviantart/malecoc]

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SODO Sundays – October 1st, 2018

Hello, tokusatsu community! It’s Joshua Perry here to talk about SODO figures on my fortnightly series, SODO Sundays. Today the rest of Zi-O Set 2 and some news from the SHODO line on this special Monday edition!

Kamen Rider Zi-O

The rest of Set 2 has now been revealed! First up is the Ex-Aid armor. Just like with Drive and Ghost the SODO Ex-Aid armor is including pieces for both Zi-O and Geiz versions. Also included is the punch hammer fists and a stand like usual.

Although it doesn’t premiere till next week’s episode the Geiz exclusive Faiz form has also been revealed! Bandai included everything they could’ve with this one, he comes with a stand, the Faiz Shot weapon. a swappable leg piece with the Faiz Pointer on it, and even the gun mode of the Faiz Phone X! Sadly there are no pieces to make a Zi-O version of this armor.

These 2 armors finish up the complete Set 2 line-up, the Ex-Aid, Ghost, Faiz, and Drive armors as well as re-releases of the Zi-O and Geiz armor bodies from Set 1.

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SHODO-X

Premium Bandai has revealed a new SHODO-X Set due for release in February 2019. Included are figures for Kamen Rider Diend, Faiz, and Faiz Axel. Faiz’s bike Auto Vajin is also included, as well as pieces to make the robot form for Auto Vajin.

SHODO doesn’t stop there as new Showa bikes and the Yellow Shocker Rider #1 have also been revealed at a toy fair in Japan.

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Next time blast off when SODO Sundays returns to its normal Sunday release.

As always you can watch SODO Sundays Season 2, Episode 4 here:

That’s it for this edition of SODO Sundays Season 2! Stay tuned for the next edition on both Toku Toy Store News and YouTube channel.

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Kamen Rider Zi-O Episode 2 & 3 Review

Kamen Rider Zi-O is off to a running start so far, cramming character development, lore, and more into just the first episode. Now, following up on that fantastic debut, the show is in full swing with no signs of slowing down.

Episode 2

This second episode focuses heavily on Build, Cross-Z, and the impact of time travel on history. Another Build makes a return, and a new Rider Armour makes a debut. Just like before, this episode is packed, but the emphasis is heavy on action this time around.

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When Another Build returns, this time with a regeneration ability, Sougo and Geiz have a tough time taking it on. Continually absorbing powers, Another Build becomes so strong that it is unbeatable. This takes about a year, beginning in 2017 in Build’s timeline, and after a brief combat encounter, Sougo and Geiz time travel back to 2017 to stop Another Build from gaining that power. Thankfully, the consequences of time travel are at the forefront here, as both Sougo and Geiz end up using powers drawn from Sento and Banjou, in the form of the Build and Cross-Z Ride Watches. One of the biggest questions they end up asking after, though, is how Sougo got the watches in the first place.

This is explained, expertly, in the form of a temporal causality loop, presented as follows:

  • Sougo and Geiz defeat Another Build
  • Another Build’s defeat allows Sougo to obtain two blank Ride Watches
  • Ride Watches are given to Sento for refinement
  • Sento gives Sougo the Ride Watches in the future
  • Sougo  and Geiz travel back in time to defeat Another Build and restart the loop

Overall, this episode is excellently crafted, heavy on well choreographed action scenes, and shows that the series is not afraid to tackle high-concept ideas in science fiction. This keeps the bar set high for the rest of the series, and with the next episode focusing on Ex-Aid, we are off to a strong start that will carry forward for the whole run of Zi-O, in the best case.

Episode 3

Who would have thought the future Demon King of the human race would be bad at video games? Shortly after Geiz and Tsukuyomi rent out the spare room in Sougo’s house, one of Sougo’s friends falls ill while playing an “Unbeatable” game on his GENM-branded game system. The game? Mighty Action X.  Following advice from Woz, Sougo takes his friend to the Seito University hospital, where they meet the genius surgeon, Kagami Hiro, who tells them the symptoms Sougo’s friend has are increasingly common, but the cause is unknown. No mention of Game Syndrome is made, but a link to Mighty Action X is suspected. Based on this, it’s safe to assume Sougo arrives somewhere towards the beginning of the Ex-Aid timeline.

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As they begin to do more and more research, they are finally confronted by Another Ex-Aid, whose design is equal parts lazy, clever, and hilarious. The comparison has been made endlessly, up to this point, but I will include it here. Another Ex-Aid uses elements of Ex-Aid’s level 2 form and his final form, Hyper Muteki, to make something that looks a bit like The Predator, from the film series of the same name. Before they make too much more progress, though, they need more information and return to the hospital.

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It’s here that another of the easter eggs in this episode pops up, as they find the Genius Gamer M’s notes about Mighty Action X on the desk of pediatric doctor Hojo Emu, whom veteran fans will know better as Kamen Rider Ex-Aid. The notes are written in German, instructions for inputs on the game that translate to the Konami Code. When Sougo uses the notes, he clears level one of Mighty Action X, and they end up sucked into the game.

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It’s here we meet Emu, and then the episode ends on a cliffhanger, getting ready for a fight. Overall, this episode is fantastic like the previous ones, but ends rather abruptly after building a great deal of excitement. Episode 4 will continue the Ex-Aid arc, followed by a combined Faiz and Fourze arc for episodes five and six.

What did you think of these episodes? Is Zi-O everything you hoped it would be? Leave your thoughts and let’s discuss!

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Kamen Rider Faiz Legends Returning for Kamen Rider Zi-O

Kamen Rider Zi-O, the 20th and final entry in the Heisei Period of Kamen Rider premieres this weekend. In preperation, more returning actors and artists have been announced for the new series.

Following the return of Kamen Riders Build, Cross-Z, Ex-Aid, and Brave to Zi-O the next two Riders Zi-O and Geiz will encounter have been revealed to be Kamen Rider Faiz and Kamen Rider Kaixa. Reprising their roles, Kento Handa as Takumi Inui and Kohei Murakami as Masato Kusaka respectively these returning Legend Riders will be featured in episodes 5 & 6 of Kamen Rider Zi-O.

That’s not it for returning Faiz Legends. It has also been revealed the opening theme for Kamen Rider Zi-O, titled “Over Quartzer” will be performed by a special unit made just for Zi-O consisting of Shuta Sueyoshi and ISSA. Both veteran Rider artists as Shuta performed “Climax Jump” the opening of Kamen Rider Den-O 11 years ago and ISSA who performed “Justi φ’s” the opening for none other than Kamen Rider Faiz.

 

What do you think of these returning Faiz Legends? Who would you want to see Zi-O bring back next? Leave a comment down below!

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Kamen Rider Zi-O: First Trailer and Press Conference Details

It’s that time of the year again, the first press conference for Kamen Rider Zi-O just took place in Japan a few hours ago and with it brought us plenty of news with the cast as well as a trailer giving us a first look at the new Rider series.

First up was the cast. Zi-O showed up on stage and did his pose with his bike the Time Machine before revealing the cast of the show.

From left to right we have :

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Mysterious Prophet Woz, maybe Warz (Keisuke Watanabe) – He appears to Zi-O from the future to tell him predictions about what will be;

Geiz Myoukouin (Gaku Oshida) – Kamen Rider Geiz, a Rider from the future of 2068 who appears in 2018 to defeat Zi-O before he can become the demon king of the future.

Sougo Tokiwa (Sou Okuno) – Kamen Rider Zi-O, destined to become a demon king in the future, he becomes Zi-O and will time travel, interacting with Legend Riders along the way to prevent this dark future.

Tsukoyomi (Shieri Ohata) – A girl who travels to 2018 with Geiz and tries to help Zi-O change the future, rather than defeat him.

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After the cast reveal was the trailer, kicking off with a showcase of the 19 previous Heisei Series from Kuuga to Build. All of their Ridewatches are shown before cutting to reveal the newest Rider, Zi-O.

The main character Sougo Tokiwa is then introduced as he finds a blank Ridewatch on his bike seat.

A mysterious man, Woz, is seen as Zi-O fights a Build themed monster known as Another Build who has “BUILD” written on its chest.

Then, the Rider from the future, Kamen Rider Geiz / Geiz Myoukouin, is shown:

Showing off Tsukoyomi, we also get a look at the inside of the Time Machine.

After some shots of Zi-O and Geiz fighting, we get a brief look at an evil looking Zi-O.

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This leads to the reveals of returning actors and characters for Zi-O first up is Sento Kiryu and Ryuga Banjou, both are returning from Kamen Rider Build and are seen giving Sougo the Build and Cross-Z Ridewatches.

Then, returning from Kamen Rider Ex-Aid, it’s Emu Hojo and Hiiro Kagami.

Following this is a montage of many Legend Rider forms, Zi-O’s Ex-Aid and Build forms along with Geiz’s Ghost and Drive forms.

At the end of the trailer, more mystery characters are revealed as they freeze Build, Cross-Z, and Ex-Aid in time.

Finally, is the start of the transformation sequence for Zi-O before revealing the premiere date of September 2nd 2018 at 9am in Japan.

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Shortly after this first trailer came out, Bandai Japan released a YouTube trailer showing a montage of Heisei Riders as well as the transformation sequences of Zi-O and Geiz. We’re also treated to the Build Armor form that debuted in the Kamen Rider Build: Be The One Movie.

While the series trailer is region locked, you can watch that Bandai trailer here:

What do you think of Zi-O so far? What Legend Riders do you want to see return? Leave a comment below!