Collaborators Alter and MegaHouse act as Alpha x Omega, a unit that produces a limited amount of figures each year.
This was the first time getting a scale from this particular manufacturer and expectations were high, especially when Alter played a part in it.
The figure itself is Tier Harribel from the series Bleach, a highly popular manga / anime adaptation in Japan and around the globe. Tier herself is a high-ranked captain of The Espada ("Sword" in Spanish) lead by Sosuke Aizen, good guy gone sour. Unlike her fellow blood crazed captains, Harribel is calm and observant, preferring to stay out of combat unless challenged or directly ordered by a higher rank.
The initial impression came with the actual box, which is huge compared to similar 1/8 scales. At 13 inches (33 cm) wide, 7.9 inches (20 cm) deep and 12.6 inches (32 cm) tall it was a monstrosity among the other boxes. Not to mention the even bigger box it came in.
With improving technologies in the figure industry, I can't help but assume that all future figures should have a somewhat unique base. Instead, Harribel gets the yellow plate treatment, a base that is also a requirement for her to be able to stand properly.
Little comfort comes from the engraved Bleach logo, her name and her rank number.
One further dilemma is choosing what head and what torso to use. Two of each are found inside the box and especially the torsos will give you a minor headache of which to display.
Above and below are the secondary parts, both giving a rather restrained impression.
The head should be pushed down further but the peg would not fit properly without excessive force so I kept it a bit loose to expose the mouth.
'Tis but a scratch.
Putting the impossible puzzle aside, the pre-assembled parts make a grand fit and look. With Tier now in her Hollow form and opened jacket she looks far more suited for combat.
The "3" tattooed on her right breast is the recently mentioned rank number within The Espada. The ranks range from 0 to 9 with zero at the top, making Harribel the fourth strongest of the dectet. Number three used to belong to Nelliel Tu Odelschwanck, a former member of the group. Nelliel was also released as a 1/8 scale by Alpha x Omega in 2010.
Unlike with Nelliel, Tier has a far more appropriate chest size, albeit large. It could easily have been one or two sizes smaller even if it's not grotesque like on many similar figures.
The hair and the sword's hilt are nicely detailed. A little more work could've been put into the actual blade, bar the fire bursting out of it.
With such greatly sculpted legs it's a shame to see the lower legs disturbingly thin.
Tier has a fantastic stomach, with the muscular lines clearly visible. The bellybutton aligns properly with the twisting torso and remnants of Harribel's Hollow armor excuse the lack of a functional bra.
It may have been the first action scale to enter my cabinet but it certainly won't be the last.