This post is the continuation of my previous post on signs of Bootleg Figures. I’ll be giving tips on how I avoid buying fake figures from both physical and online stores(sellers).
The figures I have now were all bought in physical stores in the Philippines I recommend WasabiToys. I think the best way to go about shopping there though is to order from their site then pick it up from their store in Shoppesville, Greenhills. As for online stores, I usually shop in PlayAsia.com. Recently I’ve also tried Hobby Search and KidNemo. However, all of the figures were pre-ordered so they haven’t arrived yet. I do know people who’ve used PlayAsia (best if you’re in Asia) and I heard of the other two from DannyChoo.com. I trust these sites so the online section here will deal with eBay and Amazon.
Now onto the tips! ^o^
For Both Types of Stores:
Research. Visit the official website of the figure’s maker if they have one and examine the photos they have there. The actual figures should not be different from the images they release. What I also like to do as an extra precaution is to choose certain details to compare when I shop.
I usually use facial features as these are, I believe, the best indicators. Facial features are probably the hardest parts to replicate since they take a lot of effort to do. It may not be very obvious, but sometimes it just stands out.
Next, check the price for the figure from more than one source (sites or stores). If the price is suspiciously low (which is common in, say, eBay), it is likely that the figure is fake. However, you should still be careful. I’ve seen bootleg figures whose price difference was just a couple of dollars. Also, some sellers are not aware that they are selling bootlegs or at least claim not to. This happened to my boyfriend and I. They were nice enough to refund us for the figure and we didn’t have to return the it either which was really nice of them.
So always check different sources, different stores and different sellers.
Assuming you’ve done your research…
- Ask for close up pictures. If I remember correctly, sellers are limited to a certain number of photos in the product description. It won’t hurt for you to confirm that the item is authentic by sending a message to the seller requesting better or more images. Also, a number of sellers simply use the official image in their product description; maybe they want to fool their customers or they simply want the best picture shown. Either way, play it safe.
- Read the feedback. Don’t be fooled by 1,000 positive and 4 negative comments. Read the negative comments. If someone says “botchy paint job!”, “pieces falling off!!” or “obviously fake!”, be suspicious.
- As I mentioned earlier, check the price.
- Check out the title/name of the figure. It should have the correct character name, maybe the series he or she came from and the company that produced the figure. If it says otherwise, for example: “Sexy Yuna figure” as opposed to Final Fantasy X-2 Yuna – 1/6 Scale Pre-Painted Figure.
- Packaging. Companies like Good Smile have really great protective packaging. Each piece has its own groove and the figures themselves also have extra sheets of plastic to protect them from their own parts. I’ve seen fake Nendroids and they do not have these sheets. And of course, always remember the printing! ^_^
- Finally, some figures have stickers of the company that made, produced, published or distributed (not really sure about the third) the original anime/manga/doujin/game. This does not apply to all figures though. My Miku doesn’t have a sticker.
[ps. I ordered Ignis by Max Factory from ebay and am waiting for the result. I’ll be posting about it once it arrives ^_^ This will be a test for my theories XD I have a feeling that she might be a bootleg because right after I paid for it, there was another one up for grabs >.> ]