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Monday, 26 March 2018

The Hiya Toys City Hunter Predator Comes To Town

It was in the Fall of 1990 that audiences were transported to an alternate take on Los Angeles - one in which the city was torn apart by a seemingly unending gang war, and where a fearsome alien hunter arrived to hunt all of those that he deemed worthy of his attention.

Predator 2 would go on to gross over $57-Million at the North American box office, and aid in expanding upon the mythology first explored in John McTiernan's 1987 original by pitting a brave member of the LAPD against a relentless monster known simply as the City Hunter.

Now, our friends over at Hiya Toys have released a new assortment of collectible action figures based off some of the unique Yautja featured in the Stephen Hopkins film - and we're going to kick off today with a look at the first of three brand new action figures, the City Hunter Predator.

The Hiya Toys Predator 2 City Hunter Predator is a 4" scale plastic rendition of the main antagonist featured in the film. Crafted in 1/18th scale, and serving as one of the newest additions to the Equities Miniatures line that began with the Aliens: Colonial Marines action figures from back in 2016, this little Yautja was created in collaboration with 20th Century Fox and looks to perfectly capture the very essence of the City Hunter as seen on screen.

Despite its smaller size, there is absolutely no shortage of detail here. The City Hunter bolsters a gorgeous paint job made up of mottled browns and yellows, which is all the more heightened by the addition of some very nice wash work that allows the true details of the sculpt to really pop! Black speckles, painted finger and toe claws and the signature thermal body netting are all present here, and the artisans over at Hiya Toys have not missed a beat.

Additionally, the figure also features a beautiful array of individually sculpted dreadlocks. These are each made up of a softer plastic, each one complimented by selection of the same golden dread beads as featured on the Predator's big screen counterpart.

However, it's not just the figure's body that features an exquisite level of detail...

Where the figure truly shines is in its armour.

Each piece is present here, and features a gorgeous aged brass look - complete with spots of wear and tarnish. The bio mask is striking in appearance, with eyes that appear to search deep into the very depths of your soul. Moving on down the figure, the City Hunter also features the same shoulder pauldrons, gauntlets, extremity armour and partial breastplate as seen on film. Like the above mention bio mask, each piece of armour features a very nice aged brass look, with some very nice wash work to bring out all the individual grooves and markings adorning the armour.

An armoured fauld belt is also featured on the City Hunter Predator, which comes equipped with a non-removable pocket meant for storing the included smart disc accessory. Again, everything features a superb level of detail and paint work, and we're sure collectors and longtime fans of the Predator franchise will appreciate the level of work put into each component.

We've also got to take a moment to mention how great it is that the body armour is made up of a softer plastic in parts. This allows for a nice overall appearance without really hindering the high level of articulation making up this mini monster.

Rounding out the armament department are the classic wrist blades - which are extendable, made of a softer plastic and feature a very nice metallic paint job, and an included satchel.

Yes, the level of detailing and paint work here is top notch!

And, it is something that carries over to the articulation - with a few minor exceptions.

Now, to begin, there is plenty of articulation built into Hiya Toys' new City Hunter Predator. From the top of his head to the soles if his feet, there's lots of moving parts to choose from. The City Hunter Predator features a ball peg combination in the neck and head, ball hinges in the shoulders and thighs, single joints in the elbows, double joints in the knees, hinges and rotation in the feet and a ball joint in the midsection. It's an absolutely staggering amount of movement for such a small figure, and offers plenty of posing options for fans and collectors alike.

Additionally, each joint is nice and tight and appears to hold its overall strength despite repeated use. This looks to ensure a long shelf life for the figure, and is surely something fans of the brand are sure to appreciate for years to come - and that's a very good thing, indeed!

However, we will admit that the shoulder pauldrons do limit the range of motion in the shoulders ever so slightly. Additionally, we found that the hinges in the feet of our City Hunter were rather stubborn, not wanting to move as intended and making overall stability a bit of a headache.

Now, we're not saying this was a major issue, because it wasn't, but it did seem to take a little longer than we would've liked when it came to getting the figure to stand freely without the aid of his included display stand. Regardless, this is such a strong little figure that we're willing to let these little imperfections slide. Trust us, they really are small issues.

The Hiya Toys City Hunter Predator also includes a rather nice selection of accessories.

Included with the figure are the aforementioned satchel, smart disc, both a closed and opened variation on the famed telescoping spear, an attachable plasma cannon that has the ability to articulate once attached to the right shoulder pauldron, a total of six interchangeable hands, and a skull and spine combo. As with the figure itself, each accessory features a high level of build quality, detailing and paint work. However, the real highlight here comes in the form of the skull and spine combo - it's not perfectly bleached as many plastic skeletal representations tend to be, but features a nice reddish yellow pallet that makes it look as though the City Hunter Predator is in the process of cleaning his latest trophy piece! It's really the highpoint of the accessory department.

Hiya Toys has also included a neat little display stand with the figure. It's brown in color and meant to resemble a slab of concrete. It features a single peg to mount your City Hunter Predator and does a nice job of addressing the above mentioned stability issues in the feet. Also included with the display stand are some connectors which will allow you to piece the display stands included with the other Predator figures together into a neat little diorama display.

Fans should know that the wrist blades and the spear tips are made of a much softer plastic. This is done to prevent the risk of injury on the part of kids and collectors who may be handling the figure and it's included accessories, however this does also mean that these pieces have a tendency to come out of the packaging slightly warped. However, this is something that can be fixed with the aid of some heat and it is better than being broken, wouldn't you say?

So, to sum things up here, we really love the City Hunter Predator! We've been fans of the film franchise for as long as I can remember, and we must admit that we're completely satisfied with the product sitting before us!

Despite its small size, the Hiya Toys City Hunter Predator is truly something awesome to behold! The detailing is superb, the paint work top notch! The articulation and accessories are plentiful, and everything comes to you in some beautifully designed window box packaging!

Yes, the figure has its foibles, but there just so small to really complain about.

In the end, Hiya Toys ha crafted a truly stunning little figure that'll be right at home hunting down all the heavily armed G.I. Joes and Jedi Knights in your collection!

+ Aesthetically Pleasing
+ Excellent Level Of Detail
+ Strong Paint Applications
+ Plenty Of Articulation
+ Strong Joints
+ Nice Amount Of Appropriate Accessories
+ Collector-Friendly Packaging

- Slight Stability Issues
- Softer Plastics Tend To Warp Out Of Package

Overall: "Hiya Toys has done the Predator brand proud, crafting an exceptional little figure that is truly worthy of the name City Hunter."

- Special thanks to our friends Angelo and Chang at Hiya Toys for sending the sample used in this review! And to Katie Passfield for taking the pictures used in this review!

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Until next time, Infinite Earths fans!

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