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Fake Nendoroids alert!

2010/09/25

Yep, this is another post on counterfeit figures. Unfortunately, I’m getting used to discovering more and more bootlegs around, which is certainly one of the reasons why I gave up on buying locally and became a loyal customer of Hobby Search Japan, AmiAmi, Hobby Link Japan, and other trustworthy retailers. Well, today we’ll take a look at some fake Nendoroids. They were spotted at Liberdade district in São Paulo, most of them at the same store where I’ve found that counterfeit Saber Lily Figma.

Unfortunately I couldn’t take as many pictures as I’d like since the store’s clerk is getting a bit suspicious of me already. I do not blame him since I’d really find awkward if someone drops by occasionally just to take photos of the same figures and then leave.  ^^;;

Anyway, let’s take a look at them.

If you take a quick look at the figures only, it’s hard to notice anything wrong. I’d even say it is certainly difficult for an untrained eye to notice the problems here. The price though may be a hint: BRS 118 (68 USD or 5,770 JPY) is a bit too cheap considering the price of a Nendo in Japan (3,500 JPY) + shipping cost to South America + import tax (60% of the merchandise value) .  Suspicious indeed… Let’s take a closer look at these nendoroids.

It’s difficult to notice anything wrong with Shana and Yoko, but that’s not true for Konata and Haruhi. I’m referring to Konata’s hair and Haruhi’s skirt. Doesn’t the painting seem a bit shiny and plasticky?  There’s no Nendoroid with such painting. And no, it’s not the lighting, they look exactly like that. It’s easier to spot the difference when you compare the bootleg candidate to a picture of the original.

See? No plasticky look here. (btw photo came from the gallery of tsuki-board’s member AsukaBunny).

Now let’s take a close look at the boxes.

Now we can be 100% sure that we have a team of counterfeit nendoroids being sold at these store. I believe that even a wannabe-figure collector will notice that there’s definitely something wrong here. Namely, the printing is ridiculously dark in those boxes. Not to mention that Shana’s hair turned somewhat pink and Yoko’s became crimson red (she’s even a bit tanned!). Let’s compare both with pictures of the original boxes:

A striking difference, as you can see.

And before we go, let’s take a look at the box of the nendoroid Konata being sold at the same store.

So here I want to show you two things. First, the printing seems a bit darker than expected again. Second, and most important in this picture, the box is not sealed. Good Smile Company ALWAYS seals their products’ boxes with circular sticky tape. Most bootlegs are sealed with normal adhesive tape (thanks to Lighning Sabre for reminding me of this some weeks ago). But Konata’s not even sealed here! Not to mention that the box is a bit damaged.

Now let me show you yet another counterfeit nendoroid…

Not only this L is being sold without its box, its price is too good to be true: 90 BRS is at about the same as 4,400 JPY. The regular price for L Nendoroid is 3,000 yen. Besides that we should also add 60% of its value as taxes (1,800 JPY) and at about 800 to 1,200 JPY as shipping cost. So total cost, with profit rate being zero, just could not be inferior to 7,000 JPY…

Well, it just might be a second-hand nendoroid right? That’s why it’s so cheap. And maybe its owner may have lost its box too, you might suggest. I’d really like to believe that, but that’s not the case.  If you pay close attention to the seat of L’s chair, you’ll see the poor painting job done there (it’s possible to enlarge the pic by clicking on it). I can assure you that something like that would never pass Good Smile Company’s quality standards. Therefore, as Master Yoda would say, a bootleg it is.

So, this post’s quite long already, time to wrap it up. Some advices: the easiest way to tell if you’re buying a legit nendoroid or not is to take a close look at its box, especially its back. Bad printing quality = red light warning. It’s also good to pay attention at the nendoroid painting quality as well: plasticky painting, and colors fading are bad signs. Unfortunately, though, sometimes you’ll only be able to find out if it’s legit or not by opening it. And here I bring you my final message: if you’re not sure, then simply don’t buy it, it’s not worth taking the risk.

Ah, almost forgot. It’s also advisable to be skeptical when you come across figures with prices that just seem too good to be true, but I guess you guys already knew that, eh?

I hope fellow figure collectors out there find this post helpful in their daily struggle against bootleggers. See you guys!

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8 Comments leave one →
  1. 2010/09/25 5:39 PM

    Good grief those bootleggers just wont quit!
    Again thanks for the heads up, i want to get some Nendos soon and will be on the look out!

  2. Marx-Taich0u permalink
    2010/09/26 10:46 AM

    Hmmm..so those CAD$55~ish were suspicious afterall. Having an untrained eye, I might fall for these bootlegs. :S I want to buy my first, BRS at that, but this just made me go uneasy. D:

    The circular tape will be something I’ll watch out for, but the paint jobs and box colors are something I can’t really tell. Regardless, thanks for the heads up! We’ll be sure to Ninja-out these bootlegs with this info. >:3

  3. Norbit permalink
    2010/09/26 7:50 PM

    i was going to buy this yoko nendo(http://bit.ly/bSZbTY)
    it says that’s from good smile but idk…
    can you have look at it and give your opinion please? ^^”

  4. 2010/09/27 11:12 AM

    @TAKET0MB0 Thanks for commenting! I thought it was important to warn fellow collectors out there on this since bootlegs are getting a lot easier to find lately. And some of them do look like the originals, as the Nendoroids I’ve talked about on this post. We should always keep an eye open for those these sad days, my friend.

    @Marx-Taich0u Thanks for dropping by!^^

    I don’t know if 55 CAD is a suspicious price or not since I don’t know import taxes in Canada. ^^;; Painting jobs are indeed difficult to spot, but you can always try to find pictures of the original product in some trustworthy websites, such as HSJ. As for the boxes colors, it’s not that difficult: all you’ve gotta do is to see if the color’s the same as that of the figure. As you can see here https://shikinami.files.wordpress.com/2010/09/p9180008.jpg?w=300&h=225 Shana’s hair is not pink as the box suggests.

    I suggest you to join myfigurecollection.net since they’ve got pics of most bootlegs released so far, so that you can spot the differences yourself. There you’ll even find a club called “Bootleg finders” that can help you if you need. ^^

    @Norbit You’re Brazilian, right? It’s ok to write comments in Portuguese if you want. ^^;; Well, I wouldn’t recommend getting that Yoko. All pictures there are official shots, so you can’t really tell anything from those. Besides that, some of the seller’s reviews show that he sold fake products occasionally. I’m not saying that this specific item is a bootleg for sure, but giving the seller’s history, that’s indeed a possibility. It’s up to you if the risk is worth it or not. ^^;; Good luck.

  5. Evil panda permalink
    2010/12/31 5:32 PM

    Aww~ both my L and konata nendroids are fake D: well im not a collector just a fan so for me it doesnt really matter… Even thought the painting on L was a bit off but it could been much much worse. Well, i know until next time 😀

  6. 2011/01/11 8:23 PM

    @Evil panda Thanks for the reply! Excuse me for being insistent, but it doesn’t matter to you because you just don’t mind getting bootlegs or just because it’s no use crying over spilled milk? I respect your opinion, whatever it may be, I’m just a bit curious =~

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