Nanorich Super Sonico Review

Let's Review: Griffon Enterprise Nanorich VC Super Sonico SoniComi Yoroshiku Onegaishimasu Version

Hello and welcome to Tiro Finale! Today, we'll be taking a look at a rather obscure Super Sonico figure that came out late 2014. A rather uncommon find both back then and today, we'll be taking a look at this figure which, on the surface, looks to be a competitor of GSC's wildly popular Nendoroid series and Kotobukiya's own Cu-Poche series. In the first part of the review, we'll be examining the figure as a whole as well as demonstrating all the changeable parts available.

As always, before we begin the review, let's cover the bases with some basic information regarding the figure. Manufactured by Griffon Enterprises as part of their Nanorich and Voice Collection (VC), this particular Super Sonico is the 11th addition to the series hence, the No. 11 designation. In full, it's called the SoniComi Yoroshiku Onegaishimasu Version. SoniComi as a reference to Sonico's own video game of the same name and "Yoroshiku Onegaishimasu" a common phrase used in Japanese to both please and thank you (there's no real English translation for it). Released back in September 2014, Sonico retailed for a reasonable asking price of 3,950 Yen which made comparable to a Nendoroid/Cu-Poche figure. Standing 110 mm (~4.3 inches) tall, Sonico's height too was comparable to that of a Nendoroid/Cu-Poche.

Front View
The similarities end there though as, at first glance, you'd instantly be able to spot the different proportions that the Nanorich goes for. Namely a smaller head, longer neck and legs. While it may not be as cute, it does give it a more "realistic" proportion which some may like.
Rear View
Outfit wise, many might recognize Sonico's trademark Tora Parka (Tiger Hoodie). This time around, it is matched with a different set of clothes namely, a white dress, pink stockings and light green (??) boots. It's a combination which does take some time getting used to especially if you're accustomed to the original outfit. 

Sonico herself is mounted upright with the help of a clear adjustable stand that mounts into one of the many slots in the base. The stand itself works fine enough and offers a good degree of adjustment, the only problem are the mounting points especially the ones on Sonico. They don't seem to fit as well, being too tight initially and too loose after a while. This is a rather worrying matter especially where long term is considered.

One of the selling points of a the Nanorich Sonico are the myriad of parts it comes with allowing for different poses and expressions as the user desires. Here, Sonico comes bundled with three expressions and two head types. The one you can see above is the default head with the joyful expression,

Switching the expressions is just a simple matter of removing the face plate from the head and replacing it with the desired one. This is achieved by removing the front hair piece and the subsequent face plate. In fact, it isn't unlike a Nendoroid's mechanism. But, where the Nendoroid's part switching is smooth and easy, the Nanorich one is the opposite. I found myself struggling somewhat initially to remove the front hair piece and face plate with fears that applying too much force might scratch the paint off or, worse, permanently damage the part. Fortunately, the parts themselves are fairly flexible and loosen up once you've switched more times.

The other expression provided is a pouting/sad Sonico. It's rare to see Sonico with an unhappy expression and I must say it does make Sonico look rather adorable albeit in a pitiful kind of way.
The third and final expression is Sonico with a gentle smile which is my favorite among the three. There's a certain peaceful feeling to it which, at the same, emulates Sonico's default expression. An ever so gentle yet lovely smile. Overall, I'd have to give my praise to Griffon in regards to the execution of the face plate and expressions. The expressions look lovely and each decal is applied with care giving Sonico's eyes a really bright look.
Moving towards the back, we get to take a closer look at Sonico's pink hair. With Sonico, I'm often not a fan of faded toning which gradually becomes white at the top. But, in this case, I'll let it pass. What I can let pass it the sculpt of the hair especially towards the tips. They're so boring and poorly executed! Each group of strands separate halfway through and end exactly at the same point making it a look like anything but hair. In fact, if you look hard enough and omit the headphones, it just looks like a white jellyfish with pink tentacles.

Fortunately, we see much better thought and quality in Sonico's headphones. They're colored silver and black as they should be and are size appropriately. 
They also serve a double bonus by covering up any unwanted head seams.

The only noticeable dip in quality for the headphones were some visible nip marks on the rectangular box which say in between the headphone drivers and the suspension headband. From afar, it's hardly noticeable which does help make it less of an issue.
Remember how I mentioned disliking the back of Sonico's hair earlier? Fortunately, Sonico does come with two head options. One with the hood down and another, as we can see here, with the hood up.
In order to switch the heads, you'll actually need to switch the neck joints between the heads as only one is provided. This entails removing the front hair piece, face plate and removing the neck joint before repeating the process in reverse on the other head. It would have been nice if Griffon could have included an additional neck joint. After all, those things are fairly small and inexpensive to produce.
With the hood up, Sonico's head does become noticeably larger especially around the back. Not everyone may be a fan of this look and that's worth noting. Weight wise, surprisingly the hood doesn't add on too much weight. This is probably due to the omission of the headphones and making the back hollow to save weight. As a result, Sonico does not become "top-heavy" when posed with the hood up which is very nice.
Sonico's headphones are even visible with the hood up. It's a nice piece of detail that I'm glad the manufacturers chose to include and not just lazily cover it up with the hood.

Let's move onto the arms now that we're done with the head and face. For both hand there's some limited degree of articulation. Seen here, Sonico is able to swing her outstretched hands upwards by about 90 degrees forward. 

Of course, the main attraction is being able to, like the faces, switch out the arms for different parts. Both the hands and arms can be switched out for various types. Along with it, they can also be mixed and matched as you desire.
Seen here, I've switched out Sonico's left hand for a peace sign. The joints are fairly tight and may prove a little difficult to switch but, that's actually rather reassuring because the last thing you would want is for the hands to start falling off.

If a single peace sign is not enough for you, you can go with a double peace sign. Seen here in combination with the outstretched hands shown earlier.

Another set of arms provided are these bent ones for a variety of different poses. These arms also come included with a gripping-like set of hands. In total, there are 2 types of arms and 3 types of hands allowing for a great deal of variability and poses.

Such as this adorable pose which looks like Sonico is bringing out her spiritual tiger from within. It must have something to do with that hoodie. 
Or you could go with a more traditional pose like this simple peace sign and a big happy smile. Either way, it is a lot of fun and definitely the strongest point of this figure. 

Did I mention the base speaks? Yes, it does. In fact, it is pre-programmed to say several of the characters lines. I'll cover more of that in the second part of the review (coming soon). It's a neat little gimmick and one of the unique points of the Nanorich VC series. Get it now, VC for Voice Collection?

But, I digress. What I really wanted to point out here are the three different types of legs provided. There's the straight one as you can above, specifically Sonico's right leg.

A slightly tilted one as seen in the left leg.

Here's what they look like with both of them in their tilted form. Rather weird isn't it?

Lastly, there's a bent one similar to the ones we see for the hands. These are by far my favorite because they allow for;
Awesome jumping poses! It was at about this point where my camera ran out of battery. How lucky! Twenty-eight shots through and I fortunately had taken enough shots for the first part of the review. In the second part of my review, we'll be taking a closer look at the finer details and that speaking base.

Which leaves my impressions here as a closing. It's a mixed bag of feelings really, how I feel about the Nanorich Sonico. On one hand, Griffon Enterprise is a company that often gets criticized for their poor quality figures. After all, figures and toys aren't the only thing they manufacture. On the other hand, you look at Sonico and the Nanorich VC series as a whole and you can see that they (Griffon) have put in some serious effort to produce a unique figure for collectors. 

I'm not going to lie to you, of myself for that matter, the quality and finishing do leave quite a bit to be desired especially that hair. But, on the rare occasion, that you get the pose and angle right, it looks really cute and it's almost enough to warrant the purchase.

That's been all for today's review, I hope you've found it helpful. This review is certainly one of the longest I've ever written and I've no intention of dragging in on any further. Once again, thanks for reading and have a great day ahead!


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