By Cacophanus from Mecha Damashii
As you may know, I really love Aura Battler Dunbine. In recent years, Bandai has been releasing many of the classic aura battler designs as part of its Robot Damashii range of toys. These have all been amazing toys but they were all from the main TV series. However, this new Robot Damashii Sirbine release changes all that and it truly is amazing on so many levels.
To explain, Aura Battler Dunbine is set in the alternate world of Byston Well. However, people from Upper Earth (as in, us) are transported along the aura road to fight in a war. This is because the residents of Upper Earth have very powerful auras, which in turn can pilot strange new mecha called aura battlers.
These are semi-organic mecha made from the parts of giant monsters and insects native to Byston Well.
The original TV series is an amazing and epic anime. Unlike anything before or since, the mecha designs by Kazutaka Miyatake and Yutaka Izubuchi have always been a difficult challenge for model kit and toy manufacturers.
That was until recently when Bandai started working on these designs for their Robot Damashii toy line. The results have been fantastic, with each design beautifully crafted and wholly accurate to the original designs. However, they previously only covered the TV series and not the later OVA.
This later OVA is set 700 or so years after the events in the TV series. Animated in 1988, it’s a mixed bag. While some of the visuals are nicely done, the aura battlers are shown as almost still frame paintings.
This is a huge shame, considering that these new designs were incredibly ornate and handled solely by Yutaka Izubuchi. Part of his Aura Phantasm line of designs, the updated Dunbine became the Sirbine and the Zwarth was transformed into something almost demonic.
These designs then are revered and to have Bandai tackle the Sirbine as an action figure is somewhat crazy. However, that is exactly what they have done and the results are incredible.
This is probably the nicest Aura Battler Dunbine figure thus far released, so keep an eye out for the review!