If you think I’m seriously back-logged in looking at my toy collection, you should see how far behind I am on my video games. I literally have games from two Black Fridays ago sitting on my shelf still in the cellophane. Part of that is because I still spend a lot of time playing my older consoles, but I’ve been trying to work my way through the newer stuff little by little. Case in point, I finally got around to playing Alien Isolation on the PS4 so I thought I’d celebrate and open up NECA’s figures of Amanda Ripley, both in her jumpsuit and in her compression suit.
The figures come in standard sealed clamshells. I remain torn on this style of packaging. I can’t deny it looks great and shows off the figures beautifully, but I think we’re getting to the point where this feels archaic compared to window boxes, especially since NECA themselves are doing collector friendly packaging for so many of their other series of action figures. On the other hand, I cannot deny the appeal of the plastic fume rush I get when I slice into one of these. Mmmmm, you just can’t beat it! I should note that both of these figures are re-sculpts and repaints of figures I’ve looked at before, so a lot of this Feature will be a call back to those figures. Let’s start with Amanda in her Jumpsuit!
If you haven’t guessed, this figure shares a lot with NECA’s Jumpsuit Ellen Ripley from the first Alien film. In fact, the only new sculpting here is in the head and upper arms, but thanks to a lot of new paint, the figure works quite well. Amanda’s jumpsuit is repainted to brown and actually features more paint details than her mothers’ outfit. You get sharp gold paint on all the zippers, white painted trim around the collar, and the lacing on the back of the suit is neatly painted as well. Her sneakers are also a lot cleaner. Since the body is the same, the articulation here is identical to Amanda’s Mama. You get rotating hinges in the shoulders, elbows, hips, knees, and ankles. The wrists have swivels, there’s a ball joint in the torso, and the neck is also ball jointed.
Amanda’s upper arms feature sleeves which are rolled up higher than her mom’s, with sculpted straps and circular painted shoulder patches.
The head sculpt here is pretty good, although it looks like it might have been pinched or came out slightly off in the molding process. Since the game is a first person experience, I don’t really have a strong memory of what Amanda looked like outside of some cut-scenes and the box art. Oddly enough, I kind of see a little Sophie Aldred in there from Doctor Who. I think I’m getting that from the lips and cheeks. I really dig the detail they put into her hair and it not only features her ponytail, but also some strands that hang down over her face. She’s also wearing a headset which includes a camera and microphone.
Amanda comes with three accessories, two of which are familiar. The flamethrower is the exact same sculpt as the one that came with Ellen with just a subtle variation in the paint finish. I love the detail on this thing, it really looks like a weathered piece of tech. The shoulder strap is cool too. I will note that it can be tough to get her to hold it properly with both hands. Hinges in those wrists would have helped a lot.
She also comes with a motion tracker, which I’m pretty sure was released with one of the marines. Again, there’s some crazy detail in this from the tampo on the screen and the textured grip, to the tiny red diode on the side. This is a brilliant little piece of kit and I can never have too many of these.
Finally, the one new accessory (or at least new to me!) is her rucksack, which can be slung over Amanda’s shoulder. Let’s move on to Compression Suit Amanda!
You know I love a mold when I’m willing to buy it four times over like I have with the Alien Compression Suit figures. This is without a doubt one of my favorite space suit designs in all sci-fi film history and NECA has beautifully reproduced it for their Kane, Dallas, and Ellen figures and they’ve done it again here. As far as the suit itself is concerned the only thing that’s new is the box that hangs on the middle of Amanda’s waist. Her mothers’ suit didn’t have one and the design here is different than the one seen on Dallas and Kane’s suits.
I won’t spend a whole lot of time gushing over how amazing this sculpt is, because I’ve already done it three times. Let’s just say that this suit design gave the wizards at NECA something they could really sink their teeth into and they went all out. The texturing, the wrinkles, the sculpted straps, the lacing, the studs on the shoulder armor, it’s all here and it all looks so damn good. The deco is also entirely new and features a wash that really brings out all the details. As I’ve said before, the articulation on this figure is quite serviceable. The arms have rotating hinges in the shoulders, elbows, and wrists, and also include swivel cuts in the biceps. The legs are ball jointed at the hips and feature rotating hinges in the knees and ankles. There’s a ball joint in the waist and another in the neck. Obviously the sculpt of the suit restricts the movement a bit and I think that’s pretty accurate to what wearing the suit would have been like.
The portrait here is again pretty solid with Amanda now wearing a pretty surprised expression, which quite frankly works considering the context of the game. The face has a lot better symmetry here and it’s definitely my favorite of the two. She has the same kind of arming cap we saw with the Dallas figure.
The helmet is the same sculpt we saw with Dallas and Kane (Ellen Ripley’s didn’t have the light) as well and splits apart in the middle to make it easier to put on. You simply pop off the head, put on the bottom half, connect the first hose to the back, then put on the top half and connect the second hose.
Compression Suit Amanda comes with just one accessory and that’s the trusty pistol that she carries through most of the game.
Here’s where I put cards on the table and admit that overall I found Alien Isolation to be rather disappointing. My enjoyment of the game started high and gradually leaked away with the more I played it. Add to that the fact that these are basically remold/repaints of figures I already own and I think it’s a testament to the incredible work NECA poured into these that I still had to have them in my collection. Oh yeah, and in case your wondering, there is indeed a third figure in this wave and it’s the Xenomorph design used in the game. I’ve only been able to find him priced a lot higher than retail and while I haven’t given up the hunt, I decided I didn’t need that variant enough to spend a premium on him. Besides, I have plenty of other Xenos for Amanda to fight.
Alien Isolation with VR support would be quite a scary game.
I’d need to play that with diapers. Even playing the original DOOM in the dark late at night used to creep me out.