Famous Character Dolls?

May 14, 2020

    1. I know that Volks has made doll versions of some really famous characters like Chi from Chobits, Rapunzel from Tangled, and Sailor Moon Dollfie Dream models. I personally think these dolls are pretty cool, even if they don't look exactly like their film counterparts. Maybe that's the point?
      Rapunzel for example, is gorgeous. I've never liked one of these dolls enough to seriously think about buying, but I might break down for a SD Elsa from Frozen, Merida from Brave or DD Sailor Venus and Sailor Saturn. Has anyone ever owned one of these famous dolls? What are your thoughts on them? What character do you wish someone would make?
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    2. I own DDS Sailor Moon! Volks did an amazing job on all of her details, but I have to confess I don’t love her face. It’s cute, but too demure for Usagi IMO. I’ll likely eventually replace her head mold. I think the trouble with character dolls is that they’ll always invite that sort of scrutiny.

      that said, I’m still completely sold if/when Volks produces Princess Serenity or Princess Jasmine!
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    3. Volks made some Rozen Maiden dolls ages ago, I saw photos of them as a kid and they were what introduced me to BJD as I loved Rozen Maiden so much at the time. I really wish Volks would remake the Rozen Maiden, and the two dolls they left out, as the ones they made from all those years ago don't really look like the characters, especially in expression. I know DOLK is supposed to be coming out with a Suigintou and Shinku this year, I'm excited to see how they turn out!
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    4. There have been a few BJD made based on various anime and video game characters that I love, but I always find them looking not accurate. Which I understand is (or view it as) just part of the type of collectors within this "hobby." For example, If it were a 1:6 figure based on a popular/well-known character, lets say Link from The Legend of Zelda (not possible, I know) being made by Hot Toys, the fans wouldn't let it go if it just had the outfit, or accessories but the face and body proportions weren't accurate for the character, based on any particular game title (some fans are more biased than others, towards some characters, so maybe not for my particular example, which is impossible anyway).

      However, the Volk's DD versions of Nier 2B and 9S as a comparison to my previous example, look nothing like the in-game characters but I don't see anyone minding or it even being an issue of any sort. I love the (Drakengard) Nier series, so I was a bit excited (and terrified) when I heard Volks was releasing both, but I was happily not impressed by the dolls. They are beautiful DD, but not what I would want as a fan/collector of Nier toys (I had a similar experience with SmartDoll and their rendition of Lelouch). I was able to get officially licensed figures of both, and even started off-topic 1:6 figures of them, but I'm glad the figures do resemble the characters in the same way I am super grateful licensed BJD don't resemble them, and tend to look like other dolls/sculpts from the companies cosplaying as the characters. It saves me a great deal of anxiety and money in the end. I think it's really cool that some BJD companies take licenses from popular franchise but I have never felt tempted to one any of them, despite loving a lot of the franchises that have been made so far. (:
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    5. Agreed; I've largely found that most company-styled characters (whether official or otherwise) just don't look "right." They can be (and usually are) very nice, but outside of a slim few, they always look more like cosplayers than actual characters to me, which is likely a large part of why I prefer making my own character dolls.
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    6. I think the main issue with licensed version is their interpretation is limited by how profitable the doll needs to be. If they try to match it perfect it'll cost to much for them to mass produce as a bjd. They're cool, but they always fall flat compared to the personalised one off people make.
      That being said most of the licensed doll are very well made and cute! I love the Volks interpretations of disney characters.
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    7. Wow, there were so few of those made. Did you enter a lottery to buy her? She's so big, how do you keep the dust off?

      I agree elfy016, the faces are a little different, but still cute. The clothes and accessories look amazing though.
      #7 Skygirl, May 14, 2020
      Last edited by a moderator: May 14, 2020
    8. I think the idolmaster dollfies look very similar to the source content - especially Kanzaki and Kaede.
      Emelias from RE:zero dollfie form was very close to the original.

      I wish the characters from Higurashi could get a dollfie form but that will never happen.
      Although I wonder with the reboot coming will there finally be more figures made available.
      #8 moonbabe, May 14, 2020
      Last edited: May 14, 2020
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    9. I also prefer making my own versions, because then I can make the doll as close or as far as I want the character to look, without worrying about other issues (like price). The downside for me is, I can't sew to save my life, so the outfits and props are never as neat/clean as the ones companies can make professionally. However, I got into these dolls because of how customizable they are, so that's only part of the fun for me; I much rather customize the doll myself than buy one that doesn't look anything like the character, and costs a small fortune. (:
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    10. I’d like to see Princess Peach or Rosalina or even Toadette from the Mario franchise, though I’m not sure I’d buy them. I love seeing character dolls, but I prefer my dolls to be my own original characters so I don’t feel limited by keeping the doll consistent with someone else’s character.
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    11. If the characters I shelled could have had an official licensed release, I would've been through the moon. As it as, I don't think there will be any Avatar: the Last Airbender/Legend of Korra official releases any time soon. With Fruits Basket getting that recent reboot, I would be super happy if they ever got an official bjd release. Especially Kyo, and Tohru. Or maybe some from Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood. But chances of those getting officially made? Probably pretty slim.

      Of the official licensed releases that have been done, I was impressed with IOS's version of Doctor Strange. The face-work was incredibly detailed, and looked pretty spot-on to Cumberbach's take on Strange. I admittedly don't get too invested in anime licensed releases, as they always go the Volks/DDE simplistic route, and I tend to prefer something closer to the realistic side of stylized. The triangle noses always freak me out.

      And I'd be drooling like mad if Link from the Legend of Zelda series was ever officially released. :D
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    12. There was a very unofficial Edward Elric made years ago that looked quite wrong. :) It did inspire me to do my own, though, complete with extensive modding (that's still underway). Thankfully, most official releases don't look as off as that doll did, but few look as good as that IOS Doctor Strange, either.
    13. @vicemage yeah, it seems like it depends on the company that's taking on the project, and how dedicated they are to it (at least, from what I've seen of various examples anyways). IOS already veered into the more realistic style, especially masculine sculpts, so Doctor Strange was an idea right up their alley. Some of the Disney licensed Volks releases (of the ones I've seen anyways) have looked pretty good, which probably is helped by the wide-eyed, youthful design of most Disney princesses. It seems much harder to translate anime characters into doll form, especially when they end up with those uncanny valley triangle noses and weird lines for mouths (amongst other things).
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    14. My guess is that licensed dolls are often at the scrutiny of the company that licensed them in the first place. To some degree, at least.

      I've never really looked into the official ones, although I know Ringdoll has done some super-limited super-restricted Black Butler dolls that looked pretty cool. The Rapunzel by Volks looked cute, but not enough like the recent animated version to really call it an officially licensed product, in my opinion.

      My personal take is to find a sculpt that matches as closely as you feel you can get and just do it yourself. I've got two that I'm slowly [very slowly] turning into my interpretations of Dante [Devil May Cry] and Leon [Resident Evil]. I like to emphasise the 'my interpretations' bit for both legal and formality reasons. If they can look close enough to the Capcom designs, without fully encroaching on them, I (a) get away with having no license to make such dolls and (b) get away with a few minor discrepancies in clothing or hair/eye colour and hairstyle. These dolls are for me, more than they are anyone else. But, this is another reason why I prefer dolls based on my own characters. I can't have someone breathing down my neck, saying "his hair colour should be lighter" or "that's not his coat".
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    15. Cerberus Project did a Japan-limited version of Sebastian from Black Butler as well.

      That IOS version of Strange was really well done. (I so, so wanted that outfit. Not enough to buy the doll for it, because he was seriously pricey, but- :XD: )

      Stephen and his cool outfit aside, I do have several of Volks' manga-based character dolls (Black Jack and Kiriko, as well as Lady Oscar), but I haven't kept any of them with their original full-set look. Over here, they're Horace, Shonokin and Ifri. (I picked them because I liked the sculpts, in other words, rather than buying them because I wanted doll versions of those particular manga characters.)

      My own short-stuff version of Devil May Cry's Dante is a Bishonen House Steve. I swear... with the sheer amount of ATTITUDE-per-cm that sculpt has? I couldn't imagine him as anyone else. :lol:
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    16. I’m ok with anime character dolls, but when they start to look like real people I start to feel uncomfortable around them. Some of them do look amazing though!

      The IOS version of Strange was fantastic.
    17. I'm suuuuuper tempted by Sailor Jupiter because I love the character so much. I had my interest in BJDs piqued after rewatching Rozen Maiden, so I looked at the licensed Shinku but it doesn't really look like her so I figured I'd make my own some day. Right now I'm working on making Edogawa Conan, I found that Doll-Love You looks a lot like him in face shape and got one second hand! I'm super excited to finish his outfit.
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    18. I originally joined this hobby so that I could create my interpretations of my then-favorite anime characters in resin. Many of my BJDs are character dolls, either sculpts I thought would work for the characters I wanted to create, or heads I got back in the day when Doll In Mind was still making Minimees. I'm very happy with the ones I have worked on to create resin versions of my faves, even if there are some that I still have to find bodies for in my Crew.

      I don't think I'd want to buy any of the officially licensed ones, mostly because, for me, much of the fun of being in this hobby is the thrill of bringing my versions of characters to life. And that's not even mentioning the high prices many of these dolls cost. :o:chomp: Its is more than likely less money to create your own version than to pay the prices that are usually asked for such a doll.

      I have to admit, the quick google search I did for Dr. Strange brought up some very cool pics of IOS' version! IIRC, at least in Korea, they were only allowed to go as high as a 80% likeness, but that was a while ago. the laws could have changed by now.

      Honestly, I don't see the fun in having a character doll that's already fully created. I'd be afraid of messing up the clothes, or the faceup or the wig or.... :sweat

    19. Wow, which anime character's have you made? What do you do for clothes?
    20. If it's not anime, but manga's characters, I own SD13 Maki Tsuyoshi and SD17 André Grandier by Volks.
      For me, Andre is not look alike the one in the manga as the sculpt seems so childish, and the skin is white instead of some-kind of tan; but because I think he's cute, I bought him without any hesitate, even though I had never ever a fan of "Rose of Versailles" (then I believe I loved Andre because of who he is, anyway, not as a character).
      Maki Tsuyoshi, in another hand, gave me a feeling that "He's so adorable and accurate!", then I loved him as a character (even though, again, I still didn't have any chance to read "Himitsu: Top Secret", but I loved the art-style of Shimizu Reiko, the manga artist, long time ago since her work of Kaguya-hime).
      For Volks SDGr Rapunzel, the skin color is so brilliant and she is pretty, yet in another way since she doesn't seem too accurate with the original character from Disney. Had a chance to own her from a friend, but I still didn't give any time to play with her, so she's still brand-new and ready-to-be-sold anyway...
      #20 Evendo, Jun 4, 2020
      Last edited: Mar 11, 2021