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Figure News: Polygonia goes to China

Fresh from the release of his Asahina Mikuru garage kit at Winter Wonder Festival 2007, veteran sculptor Polygo took a trip to China in early March to supervise the production of Wafuudou Ganguten’s Izumi PVC (from He Is My Master) that he designed. He documented the trip with an incredibly thorough photo log, which can be seen here; I’ve seen pictures of Chinese maker boardroom collections before, but never the production process at this hands-on a level. An eerie sight, and a real eye-opener into the PVC figure world. (no more)

Figure News: Nami SOS PVC available for preorder (tentacles included)

Last night Amiami listed for preorder what has to rank among the most ridiculous and yet oddly alluring figures I have ever seen: the improbably-bosomed Koishikawa Nami from eroanime/manga Nami SOS, complete with a set of configurable tentacles. In a strange coincidence I only became aware of this particular bit of animated detritus a few days ago while checking for Front Innocent updates… The figure is due out in July from maker Romando, not particularly known for their bishoujo figures. I’d recommend avoiding this item like the plague, really, unless you feel the same strange compulsion I do (or want to give a really bizarre gift to a “friend”). Shots ganked from Amiami below:

[EROGE] Anim’s Gyakushuu Ni on sale

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Eroge News: Da Capo II Spring Celebration coming on April 27th

HD presents coverage of Da Capo II Spring Celebration, the latest offering in the storied series that began with the original Da Capo in 2002. What can fans of the franchise look forward to in this new installment? That’s what we’re here to find out…

Spring 2007 Eroge Omnibus

So what’s up with those porn games? Shingo tackles that age-old question with a look at recent HD acquisitions and a survey of coming releases through June and beyond. You’ll ne’er find a more comprehensive prospectus list of games that I personally have some degree of interest in! Also: is <> the new :3? A hard-hitting exclusive report! Omake: another stab at useful game typology.

Business Models in the Eroge Industry: An Informal Survey

HD presents an informal analysis of current business models in Japan’s oldest industry. Well, maybe not the oldest. and maybe they’re not models, per se. Or particularly current. All I really know is that the money leaving my wallet in exchange for these things has got to be going somewhere…

Protoculture News: Victor holds auditions for the next Macross heroine

Ever wanted to join the ranks of Lynn Minmay and Mylene Flare Jenius? To save the galaxy through the power of song? If you’re between the ages of 12 and 25, your dreams could come true! Oh, and you have to be an unmarried woman. And send them a demo tape (CD-R, MD, video, DVD) with two songs (if they’re covers, they can’t both be by the same artist). You’ll need a pair of pictures, too (one close up of your face and a full body shot for “atmosphere”). There’s an application form as well, of course (better have a parent along if you’re under 18). Want to know a bit more about what you’ll be getting into? Tough – Victor won’t answer questions about the new Macross production ahead of the fact.

This whole thing is just so steeped in old-school deliciousness I don’t know where to begin – this audition process itself is practically an anime in the making. I wish I could be a fly on the wall at the production studio on the day those who make the first round cut gather to size each other up… (no more)

Let’s Get Those CDs Rolling

Howdy, folks!

You might have seen my name floating around here and there in some of the comments to Shingo’s posts in the past. While these comments will still make their sporadic appearances, it’s instead with much gusto that I am here to announce my incipient journalistic endeavors in a brand spanking new column for HD.

FAQ: Sourcing Images

Tired of spamming 4chan’s /r/ board with fruitless image source queries? HD shows you how to mine the nigh-limitless resource that is the Japanese otaku collective brain trust in this first installment of what will hopefully become a regular site feature: Shingo Answers Questions To Which He Believes People Might Not Know The Answers And To Which Said Answers Might Prove Useful.

We call it: the FAQ.

Figure News: Bome Figure Collection #21 Honey Bunny Karen & Rio preorder open

Amiami has begun taking preorders for the next Kaiyodo / Bome collaboration piece, Honey Bunny Karen & Rio (image gallery). It’s based on an illustration by Shio Sakura that first appeared as a pinup in an unspecified “comic magazine” (I hate to leave it at that, but Amiami is sparse on the details and she has way too long a resume to attempt an educated guess). This pair of bunny girls is slated for an early May release, though those seeking the biggest bang for their yen might be advised to wait for the domestic offering from Diamond. (no more)

Figure News: Hobby Japan limited edition Marimite Rei and Yoshino PVCs announced

While attempting to hunt down a copy of Comp H’s vol. 3 today amongst the local bookstores (no luck… it either sold out in a day or the shipment is extremely late, and I fear the latter is an overly optimistic prognosis) I decided to browse through the recently released May edition of Hobby Japan. Amidst several items of interest one thing stood out in particular: this charming pair of Rei and Yoshino figures from Maria-sama ga Miteru. I got all excited, only to examine the article more thoroughly and find that they’re a limited edition item available only by clipping out a special seal from the magazine and sending it in along with three box-tops to HJ by May 10th, who will then lovingly craft the box-tops into figures and send them back in four months time. If only box-tops were a global currency, what a world it would be! Scans below:

Figure News: Goodsmile’s Iroha Progresses

Goodsmile first announced that they had acquired Nakayama Eiji (Tekkoryuu)’s 1/5 scale Samurai Spirits Iroha sculpt for mass PVC production at Wonder Festival Summer 2006. She hasn’t been mentioned since, and the skeptical among us thought she might have been dropped from their production schedule entirely. Hope returns today in the form of a GA Graphic newspost from the Goodsmile booth at TAF 2007: Iroha lives, and in color! No news yet on a target release window beyond “summer 2007”, but this is an item I’ll be watching like a ravenous bird of prey. Details in this Friday’s News Watch, perhaps? (no more)

Eroge News: Yume Miru Kusuri Mastered Up

From the shameless plugs department: the meaning of the phrase “master up” that appears so often appended to Moon Phase eroge news entries has eluded me for awhile now, but I have finally grasped its true meaning: MASTER UP (v.) 1. the pressing of a game’s master disc that will then go to off to the presses, be packed in boxes (little boxes, and they all look just the same) and shipped to retailers and eager gamers everywhere – in short, the penultimate step in game production. I’m happy to announce that as of today, Yume Miru Kusuri has entered this esteemed phase. Just a few short weeks until it hits the e-shelves… (no more)

Editor’s Desk: The (C)lass Room, In Memoriam

When I moved to Isesaki in January for my new job I didn’t just leave a cluttered den of otaku filth behind – I left a memory. If you don’t want to find yourself looking for a new job as well I strongly advise against viewing this post at work…

Figure News: Megahouse Queen’s Blade PVC series Tomoe and Erina announced

Lolipuni represented yesterday with photos from the May issue of Hobby Japan scooping the production announcement of the two latest figures in the Megahouse Excellent Model Queen’s Blade line: Tomoe and Erina (Elina). Given the strategically placed seams in evidence both appear to be cast-off ready, and are slated for July ’07 release. Watch those preorders! (no more)

New Sidebar Poll: What would you like to see more of on HD?

We’re sprucing the place up a bit, and I thought this would be as good a time as any to see if anyone was still stopping by the site. If you’re reading this right now, why? (no more)

The Bust That Launched a Thousand Ships: Max Factory’s Shiranui Mai

Filing from the Old News Division: first introduced at Winter Wonder Festival 2007 on February 25th, (see Moeyo’s coverage) and again unveiled at the Miyazawa Model Exhibition Spring 2007 (Moeyo) on March 13th, last Friday’s episode of Goodsmile’s One Hobby News Watch brought official videographic documentation (and a great size reference – she’s huge) of what in my addled brain is perhaps the most aniticipated PVC bishoujo figure to be released in summer 2007: Max Factory’s Nishimura Kinu-designed, Hamasaki Gou-sculpted Shiranui Mai from King of Fighters. She’s tentatively scheduled for a July release, but we know how these things change… keep an eye on your online shop of choice, as her pre-order window is likely to close as soon as it opens. (no more)

Garage Kit News: Vispo Sculpts Ane to Boin’s Hanamaru Rurisu

Yesterday I happened to visit the site of master garage kit sculptor Katagiri Katsuhiro (aka. Vispo), only to notice that he had begun work on a new ero-ero kit which he was documenting as it progressed. The character in question is Hanamaru Rurisu from the Sano Toshihide designed 2004 G.J? release Ane to Boin, which I would say is a superb choice of subject; he was aiming for release at World Hobby Festival Nagoya this past Wednesday and didn’t make it, here’s hoping he’ll have it ready in time for WHF Ariake on May 5th… (no more)

Alice Soft’s 2007 release lineup unveiled

Fresh off of the resounding success of the December 2006 release of Sengoku Rance, veteran eroge maker Alice Soft represents today with their tentative production pipeline for the remainder of 2007. What lies in store for us eager fans? The answer will surprise you. A bit. Maybe?

X Change Alternative 2 official site open, Momoi Haruko on OP duty

Now that I have something of a professional interest in the X Change line of games from Crowd I’ve begun following them more closely, and none more so than the announcement of X Change Alternative 2 that’s been lurking on the horizon for a few months now. It was scooped fully for the first time in May’s edition of Tech Gian, which was followed today by the opening of the game’s official site. Details follow:

New Nitro+ / Niθ / Urobuchi Gen game scooped in this month’s Tech Gian – in English?!

I hitched a ride down to the local bookstore at lunch break today to pick up the newly-released May ’07 issue of Tech Gian, eagerly anticipating the tidbits of scoopage to be found therein that hadn’t already made their way online. Imagine my surprise when browsing the monthly Scoop a Go! Go! section to find an article on the newest game in the Nitro+ lineup – written entirely in English. Scans follow:

Event Report : Wonder Festival Winter 2007

Shipon represents for HD at this winter’s event for figure lovers, garage kit maniacs and devotees to hypothermia.

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