Kotobukiya Taiga Aisaka Zekkyou Design Swimsuit Ver.

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Taiga Aisaka is definitely the fan favourite from the manga turned anime series Toradora! I, too, am one of those who adores this lovely midget of a beauty, both her badass character and cutesy appearance — this is what makes her great!  I like Ami as well, but she didn’t get a respectable figure treatment yet.  Anyways, back to Taiga.  Kotobukiya brings us this lovely, ultra adorable, figure of Taiga Aisaka in a lovely pink swimsuit with yellow accents based on an original design by Zekkyou.

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Taiga’s swimsuit ver. is based on this Zekkyou design.

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Kotobukiya’s Taiga Aisaka -Swimsuit Edition- was released in October for ¥6,300 as a Dengeki Daioh magazine 15th anniversary mail order exclusive.  Needless to say, those who doesn’t live in Japan paid a hefty price for her.  Having just finished watching Toradora! when she was announced, I have to admit I was caught up in all the Taiga kawaii hype back then.  I’m not sure if I’ll make the same decision now.  But she is very cute…and tiny.

Sculpted by Hidemasa Kiyohara, the figure’s quality is exactly what I’ve come to expect from Kotobukiya.  Average. It looks average even for a 1/8 scale figure.  Kotobukiya did a really good job in retaining Taiga’s cuteness from the original design and you can see that they put in the effort to include all the minor details to make this figure look great.  The paint job looks really nice too, matte, just the way I like it.  But once again, Koto failed to deliver a finished piece.  The finishing on Taiga is really poor with scuff marks, rough edges, seam lines, and indents all over her body!  The good news is that you can’t see the shoddy finish at arm’s length, but it still sucks to know they’re there.

I have to say this figure serves its purpose of looking cute on display; she does a very good job too.  Aside from that, she is easily overshadowed by other figures because of her 8 cm stature, flat colour choice, and mediocre quality.  Taiga deserves better than that!

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Taiga is looking cute with her tsun expression and killer blushes.  I love the blushes.  To be honest, I like Taiga’s dere personality more because she’s more fun to watch with her kick-ass attitude.  But for the purpose of this figure, I really like the expression a lot.  How do you like your Taiga?

Kotobukiya did a wonderful job with her face.  She looks as cute as ever with her hair tied up like meatballs.  Last time I saw her, her eyes were brown though…

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Taiga @ the beach.  She doesn’t look too impressed.

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Kotobukiya put in a lot of work to include all the necessary details to make this figure look great.  You can see the intricate details on her hair, the frills on her swimsuit, and the way they made her authentic looking tube.  I just wished they put in the same effort on the figure’s finish and quality control.  The seam lines, rough edges, and shoddy finish is something Kotobukiya needs to work on.

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I understand seam lines on cast off figures.  But this isn’t one…

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I love the way they made the tube.  I thought it was inflatable when I saw the promo photos. ^^;;

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I just hate it when the figure looks this good, only to be ruined by something like a rough finish.

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The good:

  • Taiga is uber cute
  • Lovely details and expression
  • Matte paint job
  • Really really cute

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The ugly:

  • Kotobukiya quality
  • Japanese mail-order exclusive
  • Tiny figure with a huge price tag
  • You don’t get what you paid for

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Kotobukiya’s swimsuit Taiga Aisaka is definitely one of the cutest figures I’ve seen so far.  She makes those Nendoroids squeal in fear!  Koto did an excellent job in conforming with the original Zekkyou design and made an ultra cute Taiga out of it.  The details and paint job are on the money, but once again, I find the final product lacking in quality.  I blame Kotobukiya for the lack of quality control at their plant in China.  Even if they outsourced it, they should have more control over what they’re selling.

I think ¥6,300 yen is a rather steep price for a figure this small.  And since she was a limited edition mail-order exclusive, her price has already doubled.  If you’re looking for a Taiga figure or really cute figure in general, there are many cheaper alternatives available.  But if you’re a die-hard Taiga fan, and must have her no matter what, chances are you already have her in your inventory.  If not, happy hunting. =)

You can also find some lovely photos at:

Apparently, foo-bar-baz and I put on her tube the wrong way for our photoshoots.  ^^;;  Thank you for dropping by again.

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43 Responses to “Kotobukiya Taiga Aisaka Zekkyou Design Swimsuit Ver.”


  1. 1 Ninjovee 11/15/2009 at 03:49

    Taiga is truly such a cutie. Even though I love this figure, I’m pretty bummed that an exclusive would have so many defects… I have learned of her existence a little bit too late… but I guess that saved my wallet from even more weeping.

    Have you ordered Wave’s Miss Con version?

    • 2 Tommy 11/15/2009 at 14:10

      I think it’s no lost on your part if you just like this figure because she’s cute. The price tag is way too high for this one. The fact that people know she’ll sale at a high price doesn’t help neither. Save your money for something more worthwhile. ^^

      I don’t think I’ll be ordering the Wave version because I just ordered the MegaHouse one from the HS sale. Two Taigas should be enough for me.

  2. 5 Leonia 11/15/2009 at 04:18

    Thanks for the link. I will edit my article with this review’s link. Yours picturs are better than mine! I love the pink effect. Congratulation for this beautiful shooting.

    This figure is cute but expensive because of her mail order exclusivity. I lve Taiga and she is definitly adorable with this swimsuit and this tube. I love too her face expression. But it’s a Kotobukiya figure and the quality is not god for her price (I paid her 8600 yens but for this price you can have a better figure). I’am happy to have her but i hope that a great figure will be made. You wish or order Megahouse’s version no? Do you have a review or pictures about her? I search but i don’t find :(

    • 6 Tommy 11/15/2009 at 14:18

      You’re welcome. I like your pictures a lot too.

      I think her price is too steep as well, especially for Kotobukiya quality. But she did deliver the cuteness we expected. ^^

      I just ordered MegaHouse’s version from HobbySearch’s sale, so I don’t have a review yet. I’ll post it ASAP.

  3. 8 Guy 11/15/2009 at 13:54

    It’s sad when limited exclusives are not perfect, then again, part of the consumerist value is added by knowing you are holding and possessing an exclusive.

    Toradora! is actually the next show on my to-watch list, but I dunno when I’ll get to it, Dragon Age: Origins is too good ;)

    Taiga’s character is 135 centimeters tall, apparently, so it’s not surprising her figure is so tiny, her 1/8 is equivalent to most girl figures (which are somehow ALL 160 centimeters) as 1/10. And she’s sitting…

    I dunno, in the original picture, I definitely also get the dere. Think of Louise, their blushes are almost violent, there’s a gleam in their eyes that say, “I dare you to mock me, baka baka baka!” heh. In the figure, the gleam exists, but is much more diminished.

    And wow, I also thought it was inflatable, the tube :D

    • 9 Tommy 11/15/2009 at 14:24

      I never expected something from Koto to be perfect — I had my doubts about the quality when I ordered. But in all honesty, I think they could have done better after seeing their Asuka figure.

      I think the figure lost its gleam because the eyes are too square; they’re not as sharp as the ones in the original photo. Koto just retained the cute side, because that’s why we bought her. It would’ve been something if they did retain that glimmer of dere in the figure.

  4. 10 Guy 11/15/2009 at 14:38

    HS sale has some really nice stuff, especially swim-suit Nia (which with the tube would go well with Taiga ;)) but due to the ridiculous prices they want for shipping, they won’t get my money, and I won’t get their figures :-/

    • 11 Guy 11/15/2009 at 14:42

      Oooh, they’ll only take $17 for shipping swimsuit Nia? Let’s see if they updated all their costs, might have to give them a whirl if they actually changed things.

      • 12 Tommy 11/17/2009 at 13:47

        It seems like they’ve fixed the problem with their shipping quotes. But it’s too little too late. My orders are going through Amiami now. ;)

        • 13 Guy 11/17/2009 at 14:26

          Yeah, AmiAmi is tempting, how much do they charge you for shipping? That’s critical to me, SAL, EMS?

          • 14 Tommy 11/17/2009 at 17:43

            I ordered, but haven’t actually received anything from them since they’re pre-orders. I was going to buy the MH Taiga from them since it was 30% off…but you know what happened with that one.

            I believe their EMS should be around the same as Hobby Search before they messed up the quoting system. They’re experimenting with SAL too, but they only ship with “registered” SAL so we’ll have to pay 700 yen extra…or so they say. It’ll end up being around the price of shipping with EMS.

    • 15 Guy 11/17/2009 at 17:46

      Remind me what happened with the MH Taiga?

      Also, even if registered SAL costs as an EMS, I’m going to try it, because EMS gets stopped by the customs, registered SAL may not. The difference in end-cost to me is quite substantial.

  5. 19 gundamjehutykai 11/15/2009 at 15:05

    Minorin all the way I say!!!! Then Ami… then the Prez. Come to think of it, Taiga is pretty down on my list…

    Well, at least until the story gets all angsty and then nobody is likeable.
    But I think I’ll stick with my Taiga GK for now. You know, the one which Danny Choo posted a little while ago and now everyone wants it!

    • 20 Tommy 11/17/2009 at 13:48

      Yeah, the story got pretty annoying in the end.

      So are you planning to paint that Taiga any time soon?

      • 21 gundamjehutykai 11/18/2009 at 15:46

        I’m working on it…

        I still need to finish Sheryl first, and then KOS-MOS (cos EVERYBODY wants to see a completed KOSMOS). After that, I was going to go back to my original schedule of working on kits I bought years ago, like Asagi and my Fate and Nanoha combo, but I might push Taiga up the list…
        That’s the problem with GK, you can’t just show them off immediately…

  6. 22 lightningsabre 11/16/2009 at 03:26

    Whoa! You got her?? Damn… I’m jealous man! But I can see the list of bad things here. Kotobukiya is just a decent figure maker, and their figures are usually relatively cheap. Except this one since this is a Japan exclusive >_< I'd still want to get her though, just because it's one of the cutest Taiga figures next to the Max Factory one. Palmtop Tiger indeed.

    • 23 Tommy 11/17/2009 at 14:15

      Yes, I got her. :P

      I think their prices are only “cheap” relative to other makers, but not cheap per se. They used to make figures at the < 4,000 yen range, now it's in the 6,000 yen range.

      Not too sure about that MF Taiga comparison; since I don't have her, I'll have to say Koto's is cuter.

      • 24 lightningsabre 11/18/2009 at 16:27

        Oh oops… I didn’t mean to say “cutest next to the MF one”… I mean the next cutest thing would be the MF one after Koto XD

        Yeah, their price used to be cheaper, but I guess there is inflation everywhere =/

  7. 26 Lylibellule 11/16/2009 at 16:11

    It’s a shame it’s so expensive, especially when you had to pass by an
    intermediary for such a small size. nevertheless, i think she’s cute
    mainly her face look.
    The buoy is really well made, almost real.
    I appreciate the pink background used for your photos and the photo with
    all “Idolmaster” is so sweet and let us have a good idea of Taiga’s real
    size.

  8. 32 enrius 11/18/2009 at 01:33

    Simply gorgeous! I would so have her if I could. But yeah, she’s expensive. And considering Kotobukiya, it’s not surprising that their products may have finishing problems.

    But anyway, great get!

    • 33 Tommy 11/20/2009 at 13:55

      You’re really in for a ride once you start buying those exclusive figures…it’s better not to join the club. ^^;;

  9. 34 Blowfish 11/18/2009 at 16:26

    That Tube is sooooo Badass!
    I dont like Taiga at all so I am naturally not a fan of this figure ^^;;;
    As far as ToraDora goes im more the Ami Guy and well if Amis taken ill gladly take Minorin but Taiga? Hit me with a stick but no thanks.

    I only own one Koto figure so far and thats Kanzaki Kaori and I totally agree on the lack of finish on the figure.Kotos paint choices are a bit odd aswell since they simply arent as lively as they could be and dont help the figure to stand out.

    • 35 Tommy 11/20/2009 at 13:54

      LOL, I know…she’s too flat for your taste.

      Ami…only if someone good decides to make a figure of her…I don’t think that’s happening unless there’s a second season to Toradora! Btw, i don’t hit people with a stick…I hit them with a bat. XD

  10. 36 chun 11/19/2009 at 00:29

    Love Taiga ^o^ find it strange that her eyes are red tho ^^;

  11. 38 Miette-chan 11/21/2009 at 03:14

    I wanted to get my hands on this figure when I saw it displayed at some event.

    Alas, she was a mail in exclusive at that was it.

    That aside, the main thing that attracted me was her expression, really like how she looks.

    • 39 Tommy 11/21/2009 at 12:53

      I think she would’ve sold like hotcakes if she wasn’t a mail order exclusive.

      I really like her expression too, she’s so cute. ^^

  12. 40 Q 11/22/2009 at 17:25

    I still haven’t resumed Toradora after all that time… orz

    Kotobukiya… Well from what I’ve read there are two things that they often don’t seem to do as well on (compared to other big brands) – those are 1/8 scale figures (it just happens to be so) and swimsuit figures (the seam lines problem), and here Taiga falls into both categories.

    A pity that what you have paid is not exactly what you would have fully wanted, especially when it’s a limited one. The swim ring does look pretty good though – one of the best part of this figure.

    • 41 Tommy 11/24/2009 at 01:40

      I’d say you shouldn’t worry about resuming Toradora if you reached the halfway point…gets kinda boring (for me) after they changed the OP.

  13. 42 Optic 12/09/2009 at 09:25

    I’m surprised the finishing quality was really bad. It’s like they showed the design, made it an exclusive, delivered the product but never finished up on the finishing touches.
    It makes me sad this looks like Koto work a few years back. Even though I don’t have her and I was considering to get her, I’m disappointed Koto went this way.

    I really hope future exclusives aren’t like this because their so call ‘exclusives’ will get a bad name. -_-

    • 43 Tommy 12/10/2009 at 00:53

      It’s like taking one step forward and two steps back. Just when I thought I can have some confidence in their figures…they give me this. “orz


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