Am I an android? [ALTER Aegis review]

30 04 2009

“Ah, let’s see… it says you’re… a weapon of mass destruction? Oh. It’s obviously a mistake.”

– Teacher’s comment on Aegis’ first school day

Aegis is the first of several figures to come from ALTER’s Persona line-up. With the videogame experiencing huge success and breaking through to the North American demographic, it was of no surprise that figure manufacturer titan Alter would create a figure from the series.

Note: Much to my noobish amusement, I was tweaking with the brightness and contrast filter and came up with the results in this image. Wheeeeeeee!

Update: My critic wasn’t happy enough with how my previous banner looked and has made some modifications to it.

Manufacturer: ALTER
Release Date: Mid  Oct., 2007
Scale: 1/8
Series: Persona 3
Retail Price : 5800¥

Aegis must have been a test of sorts fo ALTER to gauge whether or not a Persona line would be worth investing in because it wasn’t until much later on that other Persona comrades would join Aegis in the pvc world. Let me allow to say that I am a big fan of ATLUS games and my appreciation to their Shin Megami Tensei franchise is nothing short of the word “loyal”. The series is a cult rpg that is more considered underground until Persona 3 reached the states. Having thoroughly enjoyed Persona 3 immensely, imagine my delight upon reading information that ALTER had released an Aegis figure. Upon looking at the prototype shots, I was without a doubt amazed that the android herself was staring right back at me. This was during my premature stages of collecting mid of last year and I knew nothing of this ALTER company, but she was definitely someone that I wanted to take home with me.

On an excursion to pick up ALTER’s Kos-Mos ep.3 figure – which happened to be sold out-, my eyes gravitated to a white box with a simple band of yellow on the front. Lest my eyes deceive me, but it was the ALTER Aegis that I had read about in the lower shelf. Ironically, I would buy a second Aegis from a pvc sale and come across another listing for her at an online store when everyone was scampering to find her.
There is another pvc rendition of her from maker, Kotobukiya, which pales in comparison to the ALTER version. While I understand what artwork and style that Kotobukiya was aiming for, the entire Kotobukiya Persona 3 line-up is fairly inferior to that of ALTER’s. Kotobukiya has Akihiko senpai and the Hero which are the only ones that I am willing to buy from Kotobukiya and even then, I don’t want to buy a figure out of a need for representation while sacrificing quality.

Now, I was completely unaware of leaning and weight distribution in relation to plastic figures and definitely did not even factor those things in my decision to buy Aegis. After less than a year of being in this hobby, I am more the wiser and acknowledge that weight distribution is a very important factor to weigh out in pvc purchases. However, ALTER has not failed me in that aspect and Aegis continues to stand tall and firm with her dynamic one-legged pose.




The details in the joints and brass sections are done with explicit care. Every groove, curvature, and fold is meticulously crafted in order to bring out a dynamic, yet static articulation. Every time I look at this figure, I am filled of the fond memories of friends made and lost during my adventures in Persona 3.

It seems that in Japan, Aegis is one of the more popular characters in merchandise which doesn’t surprise me in the least bit. I have heard it mentioned before from people who easily discredited Aegis on account of not being interesting enough in respect to the other ALTER Persona figures made or to be made. Let me reassure you that those are merely the words of an amateur, uninformed “collector”/individual who is too busy justifying excuses about inadequately finding the figure or not being wise enough to realize extreme character growth in a non-human character. Humans, too often, are very quick to find excuses rather than come to terms to reality because it’s easier to discredit something that you don’t have or are unfamiliar with. While Aegis certainly does not meet the stereotypical Magical Girl, Flirty Feminine Female or even Moé factors, she is without a doubt one of those more unique acquisitions to a collection. If I could stand by a figure out of the many that have been released or give my opinion if asked about the Persona line, I would point you through several means to try to get a hold of this android beauty. I am a big enough of a fan to hunt down exclusive and prepay limiteds in advance – which is something I did with the ALTER Yukiko pvc because I love the franchise. Despite owning ALTER’s Elizabeth, Mitsuru and the online shop ltd. Yukiko, I will still continue to choose Aegis time and time again. My decision doesn’t belittle the quality behind the other characters, but there is a certain magnificence that Aegis has over the other characters on top of the excellent character growth infused by ATLUS.

ALTER is an expert at creating fluid and dynamic, yet static poses of iconic characters. I don’t know too many manufacturers that are as adventurous as they are when it comes to making dynamic poses. I am guessing that a solid leg made out of ABS – which is sturdy and durable plastic – coupled with the weight distribution, juxtaposition of the body as well as a heavy base attachment all help to balance out the figure and prevent it from potentially becoming a leaner. I’m also sure that most figures, despite what precautionary measure are taken will succumb to leaning under the most extreme of conditions, too.


So, there you have it! I would love to be able to revisit this model for a later photo shoot and really do her beauty some justice. Until then, all you have are the humble beginnings of a collector and her constant growth with photoshoots as well as a short rambling of how much I love the character and her origins. This really is one of my most favorite and top figures out of the 400+ that are in my collection. It was love at first sight with ALTER and it’s been love ever since

So, here’s a little update for those who care and for those who really don’t care, then it’s no skin off of your or my teeth. I am beyond belief tired from work. It seems that all the mental activity behind all of my daily tasks is really tiring me out. I have gotten some quite a few hauls during my unannounced hiatus and finished up some game, while neglecting some more. Bad Jem. Bad Jem. Guess, it really can’t be helped *shrugs*

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18 responses

30 04 2009
xJAYMANx

@Jem-chan: I don’t know much about “Persona 3”, but I’m really liking her “steampunk”-styled chrome or brass. I’m not sure, but this might be the first unboxed photoshoot I’ve seen of yours, isn’t it? Not bad at all!

30 04 2009
ELTboy

I don’t play the game, so my love for her does not go as deep as someone who know the character, but as a figure collector, she is a masterpiece. In fact, I find her a work of art. The best from Alter’s Persona figures currently. I would love to own her if I can find her at a reasonable price but that is very difficult.

30 04 2009
lovelyduckie

“I have heard it mentioned before from people who easily discredited Aegis on account of not being interesting enough in respect to the other ALTER Persona figures made or to be made. Let me reassure you that those are merely the words of an amateur, uninformed “collector”/individual who is too busy justifying excuses about inadequately finding the figure or not being wise enough to realize extreme character growth in a non-human character. Humans, too often, are very quick to find excuses rather than come to terms to reality because it’s easier to discredit something that you don’t have or are unfamiliar with. ”

If that’s me then ouch.

Even if it’s not me it’s true I’ve said something along those lines before because I can’t justify buying her at much more then her retail price (although not because she isn’t human or anything). I really like Aegis’s character a lot, I find her cute. I’d love to own her but I don’t have the time for all the legwork required to find her at anything less then twice her retail price. Personally I like Elizabeth the best of the Alter Persona 3 figures so far, her eccentric character has been the source of a lot of adorable humor in the game for me so the figure makes me smile.

30 04 2009
lylibellule

A figure being in my wishlist!

I find her really beautiful and very successful!

1 05 2009
Blowfish

Beeing a Nintendo Boy never gave me the possibility to play the Persona games and the fact that many Atlus games dont get localized for Europe either isnt great either ^^
Gotta say that i like the Girls ive seen in PVC form so far do look nice indeed.
You really started collecting one year ago?Did you rob a bank to finance 400 figures in a year?
Im always amazed that you are such a objective and rational person that only wants grade A stuff.Im a subjective impulsive person that likes to sacrifice quality for a certain fuzzy warm feeling ^^

I think i didnt mention it yet but i like your watermark.Very simple yet appealing

2 05 2009
aprilius20

Loving the pelvis;)

3 05 2009
;Kizo

It would very awesome if Alter had continued making the rest of the Persona 3 characters. .Afterall, I enjoyed your detaile review & your mini-rant about amateur collectors. xD I expect more reviews like this from you!! [. . .when you have free time, of course]

&; I missed your exclusive hauls on Toy’s Logic! Come back to us! xD;

12 05 2009
xjaymanx

@Jem-chan: Awww, thanx! Although, they didn’t really become *mega-posts* until the Blog 170s-180s, lol… Pssst {looks both ways}. Lemme tell ya something. If u click on the “Elwing” shot to jump to the full photoshoot, you’ll realize that those aren’t real plants or flowers. That’s my 24-inch iMac monitor, hahaha! Awww, yeah, Danni indeed has that wholesome look. And when they do those little video intro interviews, she’s even cuter! You’d never know she’d been with about 250+ guys (from teens to sixties) by the time she hit 18. By her own estimates, lol. Whoa… Wait, I didn’t add Miracle Whip? I thought I did! Am I missing something?… Haha, awww. I’ve trying to crank out Blog 201, but last night (Monday night) when my laptop got your comment, I was still on the set (fastfood place) of an indie-film shoot. Yup, I was an extra, lol. Either eating salad in the background or my legs walking across the shot, lol. Not to mention my Friday-afternoon non-speaking role as the “stoic Asian businessman”! Too funny! Something for Blog 202? ^_^

13 05 2009
oneandonlyjem

@Jay: Nah, I’ve done other photo shoots such as Lei Fang and a few of the FREEing 1/4 bunny girls, but she is my favorite one out of ’em all. I wish I could do her justice with photography, but my words will have to suffice for now. Yes, definitely got the steampunk style to her.

@ELT: I think if I didn’t know anything about her, I would still be very enamored with her. She is, indeed, a work of art. She’s a great example of art exemplified through a pvc medium. She’s really beautiful and I love ALTER for bringing her out. I really do wish you the best of luck in finding her. I’d shell out at least $100 on her because I just love the figure and character. It’s getting hard to get one for a reasonable inflated price as she is quite popular.

@Lovelyduckie: Standard prices for the most part will run you at least double her MSRP because she is just that popular and coveted out of the entire Persona line. My comment is in reference to anyone who can disregard something due to unfamiliarity and suddenly “fall in love” with it later like some blind fanboy/girl. There are figures that I’d love to own, but would require legwork and $ for me, but I would never dismiss it as a cop out answer for something else. I know that not everyone would share that ideology, but I wouldn’t forsake anything for any reason unless I really didn’t like it. I wouldn’t try to mask it behind some real ulterior reason. That’s just me and you can interpret anything however you like as that is your right.

@Lylibellule: Oh, thank you. She is so beautiful. Out of the entire collection, this is one of the figures that I have so much love for on a personal and artistic level. If you could find her, I’m sure you will not be disappointed by the quality.

@Blow: Actually, being a Nintendo boy has a lot of great merits and every “smart” gamer who is actually a gamer should know that the gaming industry would not be here had it not been for good ‘ol Nintendo. I love Nintendo a lot and wish I had more time playing those classics. The original Megaten series were on the Nintendo, IIRC, but it was most likely import. As a perfectionist, it is very hard for me to play games let alone rpgs given the nature of the game, so I own quite a few, but cannot allocate time to each one. The ALTER Persona line is a really great line to collect – Mitsuru is very pretty; Elizabeth looks just like Elizabeth which is plain and simple; Yukiko is very pretty; Aegis rocks!!! Out of all the figures, Aegis is the most popular one and is the best looking one in terms of quality, imo. I am lucky enough to own two of her because she is such a fantastic figure. Yes, I just past the 1 year anniversary just last month. Yeah, talk about downward spiral into figure chaos. It is my intention not to go too crazy past this point, haha.

Blow, I have to be objective because my husband is part of the process and I really love art and want the very best. I understand that warm fuzzy feeling, but my warm fuzzy feeling becomes more objective and less subjective. For example, when I love a character, I simply will not settle for anything less than accurate or perfect because I want to be able to look at that character and remember a memory or a certain feeling. I also feel that by buying something that isn’t as great of a reflection of the character, I am not very interested in getting it at all. If the character is great and accurate, I will hunt the figure down and consider spending $ on it, if need be. This hobby is very expensive, so I have to choose and be picky and have a balance of objective versus subjective. I am probably a really superficial person and want “pretty” looking things, too. Hahaha…yeah… I don’t advise you to have spending habits like me. If the figure makes you happy and gives you a fuzzy feeling, then it’s fine. For me, I can only get that fuzzy feeling if the figure looks like the character for me. Damn, this was a long reply >.< Thanks. The watermark is an experiment and me being amused with Photoshop.

@Aprilius: Hahaha. Why, of course! It’s to showcase the excellent quality control in handling paint and sculpt in Aegis’ pelvic region.

@Kizo: Hi Kizo. Thanks for stopping by! Yes, I want Junpei and a badass looking Akihiko. I really want Akihiko and Shinji, too. I don’t know why there’s no winking Yukari figure, too. I mean I’d gladly sacrifice Elizabeth to get a Yukari. I am tempted to buy the Kotobukiya Hero one because it’s a pretty good rendition of the protagonist. Damn. ALTER needs to make a Rise as I am not liking the Wave one at all. I love Rise’s character. Well, it’s fine because Aegis=love and if she were the only one, I’d be more than content. Ah, yes, it was a rant, wasn’t it^^ I wouldn’t say “amateur” collectors because everyone has their humble beginnings, but I would classify them as “pseudo” or maybe even “noob” collectors. I mean why would you give some lame reason for not getting or doing something just because you couldn’t get what you wanted or it wasn’t easily accessible for you. I am a firm believer in giving credit where it is due, so if something is pretty, but I am unable to get it then I continue to say it’s pretty rather than dismiss it and try to undervalue it’s merit. As a genuine collector who is fairly hardcore in the pvc and video game hobby, I stand by my figures and do it out of love rather than some trend or bouts of mental instability or insecurity. Thanks for the kind words and they’re really well-appreciated. I think this was a fairly lame review on a fairly awesome figure. At this point, I don’t think I could do Aegis any justice and will have to settle for diction with some visual feedback on why this is an awesome figure. I rarely open up figures as there is no real point in opening them up right now and after 500+ figures, the urge to want to debox the figures died fairly early on (after 10 figures or so). It’s most likely gonna be Christmas all over again when I move, get set up and finally get to display all these awesome plastic and resin members of my army.
Ah, hahaha…I’ve definitely gotten some limited/exclusive hauls since my absence. I’m just tired, vegetating and indifferent to the forum at this point. There are some members such as yourself that are cool and I drop by to see what’s up, but I’ve lost interest at the moment. Oh yeah and I want to start playing Oblivion on the X360, too. Wheeeeeeee!

28 05 2009
- -Kizo

Yeah, I don’t know why Alter doesn’t just make the rest of the crew. x.x I mean the game is pretty successful in Japan & whatnot. I always thought the Alter’s Aegis was the best one out of the bunch ’cause of her awesome pose (I have a weakness for anti-gravity art pieces), but I guess people have their own opinions on her. lol. I lose respect for those kind of people that contradict themselves. I’m one of those “noob” collectors too. heh
I’m still stuck playing Persona3 so I don’t know much about the new characters.^^; Looks like your wish came true with the Alter’s Rise coming, so no more pouty Jem. I’m digging her new look in that swimsuit.

lol, I know what you mean. xD Oh, I’ve been meaning to ask you if you’re planning to open all the boxes once you move or just keep the really rare one in their boxes. && like, are you gonna buy those Ikea’s detolf or a customized ones? Personally, I really don’t like the detolfs since it’s too small & it would look so weird setting them side by side.

Have fun playing Oblivion. & again, I think this review is pretty awesome! (:

29 05 2009
oneandonlyjem

@Kizo: ALTER won’t make the rest of the crew because they are evil. Just kidding! I, too, feel that she is the only figure to do Aegis’ character justice. I’m a sucker for gravity defying poses and she just looks like Aegis. Nah, you’re not really a noob collector. By default when we all start out, we’re all relatively noobish and that’s all right. I have no respect nor tolerance for people who are fake collectors, amateurs trying to pass off as an expert, or insincere, contradicting people. They not only try to pass themselves off as something that they aren’t, but they make genuine fans and/or collectors look bad by staining what it means to be those things.

Persona 3 is a great game and I still really like it. Perhaps, even more so than Persona 4. Out of all of the characters, Aegis is still the most popular and sought after of the bunch. Hahaha, yes no more pouty Jem. I really don’t like the Wave one as her face feels cheapened to me which is why it was a godsend that ALTER made one. It is a very cute swimsuit and I’m lovin’ her glasses. :]

Yes, I plan on opening the boxes when I move into a house to accommodate the collection. I am a bit hesitant to open the boxes on some of the extremely limited stuff. I don’t like the Ikea detolf display cabinets because they don’t look all that nice to me AND I need to buy several to accommodate the collection. I don’t think it looks really nice to have 8 Ikea detolf cases side-by-side. I won’t do book shelves because I don’t want dust on my figures and I don’t think book shelves would give me the sexy look that I am aiming for, so I’d much rather get a customized display cabinet. I also need to get a customized display cabinet for the video game collection as well. haha, I just re-read your side-by-side comment. Great minds think alike.

Oh, I’m having a blast, but there’s a huge time constraint of me being able to fully enjoy my free time. Thank you for your thoughts and for stopping by.

6 09 2009
gordanham

What a great figure. It’s to bad she is so hard to obtain now. Those are some pretty awsome shots too. I swear on my life though that I will get Elizabeth! She will be mine!

6 09 2009
oneandonlyjem

@Gordan: Thank you for the kind words. I need to replace and upgrade to a better camera and improve upon my photography. If you need help getting Elizabeth, I’d be more than willing to help you. Aegis is one of the best figures that I own in my collection. If you ever do decide to get her, I guarantee that you will not be disappointed. I love her character in Persona 3.

6 09 2009
Gordanham

I actually found Elizabeth instock at two places and I just need to quit playing chicken and order her. I think that one day I will get the chance to buy Aegis at a really affordible price, and I will get her. I probably won’t see that oppertunity anytime soon though, but I know that one day it will come. I’m not really that in a rush to get her too because I haven’t met her in the game yet. I haven’t played P3 in over a month^^; Ever since school started I bearly have time to get on the internet let alone play video games. Once fall break rolls around though I’ll be addicted again. Then I’ll have to fast from it for nine more weeks until winter vactation.

I need to get a new camera too. Mine has that nasty grainy layer whenever the light isn’t right. I think that next year I’ll take a photography class. It’s funny to because I choose to join the photography club in P3^^;

7 09 2009
oneandonlyjem

@Gordan: haha, well at least you know what’s holding you back and what you need to do. If you ever binged and got the whole ALTER set of Persona figures, Aegis would be the most troublesome to get for a good price. I’m sure you can still get Yukiko for a reasonably inflated price because there will be some inflation due to being a Japan exclusive.

I need to replay it on playthrough+, but then I opted to begin my file anew with FES. It’s understandable that you don’t have that much time because of school.

hahaha, that’s ironic about the photography club. I was in the kendo, art, soccer and swimming clubs in all the times I’ve played.

7 09 2009
gordanham

I didn’t know there was a soccer club.

7 09 2009
oneandonlyjem

@Gordan: My bad. I mistakenly confused that with P4, hahaha.

11 01 2010
2009 in perspective and looking ahead towards 2010 « One 'N Only Jem

[…] Am I an android? [ALTER Aegis review] – Photo shoot of one of my favorite recent video game characters […]

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