Review: Shuriken Gattai DX Shurikenjin (Shuriken Sentai Ninninger)
Shuriken Gattai DX Shurikenjin
February, 2015 – ¥8,200
Each of the five Ninninger have an Otomonin partner. Together, those five Otomonin form together to greate Shurikenjin! Shuriken Gattai DX Shurikenjin was release in February, 2015 for ¥8,200. Shurikenjin is formed by combining Shinobimaru, Dragomaru, Dumpmaru, Wanmaru, and Byunmaru. Yes, our robot is formed with a ninja, a dragon, a dump truck, a dog, and a bullet train. Sure, only one of them actually fits the theme, but that’s the beauty of it I guess? The designers were going for an homage everything Sentai has been in the past, and I think they certainly nailed it in that regard. Included with Shurikenjin is the Otomonin Shuriken. This Shuriken can be used with the Ichibanto to summon any of the five Otomonin. More importantly however, it acts as the helmet and head for both formations of Shurikenjin!
First release versions of Shurikenjin contain a gold foil outline on the box, as well as three additional NinShuriken Blades. These are blades for Kininger, Shironinger, and Momoninger. Since each of the Ninningers in the show have their own unique Otominin Shuriken, it’s a pretty cool thing to have if you’re a fan of a color that’s not red or blue. The blades themselves are exactly the same as the blades for the normal Ninninger Shuriken that will be available However they don’t actually add anything to the robo, as those three don’t have forms of Shurikenjin. While I understand some really wanting it, it’s a first release bonus I wouldn’t worry about paying extra to get a hold of.
The individual Otomonin are pretty interesting. While none of them are particularly fun on their own, they have certain interactions with each other that are really fun. Just like in the show, Wanmaru can stand or sit inside the empty compartment of Byunmaru, which is really adorable. In a similar fashion, Shinobimaru has the ability to sit or stand in the back of Dumpmaru. Dragomaru has wings, so he can just fly himself places, but it’s neat the other two have methods of riding in the faster vehicles.
Combination is easy and reminds me a lot of Gosei Great in terms of construction. Long train becomes the legs, attach main body, attach two arms, attach head. It’s pretty basic, with the added step of putting Wanmaru into Byunmaru and Shinobimaru into Dumpmaru’s compartment. To transform into Shurikenjin Drago has a few more steps, including making Shinobimaru into an arm, but even that formation is relatively easy.
The weird format takes some getting used to, but I love the end result. It’s weird how a formation of such weird things can actually look like a coherent unit. Given the theme, I like the design of one of the robots essentially piloting a suit made up of the other robots. It’s meta in a way that I totally enjoy. My only complaints on the design is the flap on the arm from Dumpmaru being sort of annoying, and the fact that the Shuriken hat is rather large. My only other complaint is the lack of storage for the blue (or red) Shuriken blade. Both are integral to the two formations, so it would be really nice to be able to store the one that’s not in use somewhere. To top off a pretty cool design, the legs (mostly thanks to transformation and what I assume to be future transformation) are incredibly articulated. For once you can pull off some pretty neat poses.
Overall, Shurikenjin is a surprisingly awesome toy. The weird theme combination took some getting used to, but I’ve since warmed up to it and really appreciate the design. It’s one of the most articulated robo we’ve gotten in quite a few years, and I think that’s what makes it so fun. If you can look past the weird design choice, I think it’s definitely a must have. For everyone that says newer mecha aren’t fun or are uninspired, Shurikenjin definitely proves them wrong. I really love it.