Life In Plastic: Minecraft (Pt. II)


Someone stop me, please!  Haha, just kidding, I am beyond all hope.  help me.  ANYWAY… I got more Minecraft toys!  So, a little background:  Minecraft merch is produced by more than one comapny.  The minis are made by Mattel, but the larger figures by Jazwares.  They are sold on the same shelf, but they are different.  The full-sized (about 4″) figures are proportioned correctly (the minis are chibis), and articulated, but are made of a harder, more brittle, hollow plastic.  I admit, I much prefer the soft and durable PVC of the minis, but the larger toys are fun in their own right.  So, let’s start out with them!


The Creeper is pretty much the most iconic thing out of Minecraft.  Essentially mobile bombs, these weird plantlike creatures sneak up to you or your buildings, set a fuse, and EXPLODE.  This figure is really photo-accurate to the game, and it is articulated – though those joints threaten to come lose pretty easily.


The Creeper comes with a big (hollow) block of TNT and a small lump of charcoal, all from the game.  All the ordinary Minecraft figures come with a block and accessory item, which is a really, really good idea. A ccessories can make or break action figures, after all.


I also snagged the Spider Jockey, a “deluxe” figure – basically two toys, though the net amount of plastic isn’t too far off from a regular release.  This one really feels worth it, though.  The spider has a saddle that’s easy to slide on or off, and fits the skeleton well, and the overall effect is of a really horrifying thing made cute.


The skeleton actually does stand on its own, just not too well.  And there is a tiny notch in its hand perfect for holding that bow – subtle, but effective!


The spider is surprisingly mobile, though pretty much just boxy.  I like it, but again, its design conceals how horrifying it should be.


See?  Hahaha!


The Spider Jockey also comes with three Silverfish – you’ll see a mini of these guys, too.  The figure is missing the hair/spikes/feelers/whatever silverfish have, but that doesn’t mean much.  Any addition adds value.  After picking up those two sets, I don’t feel the need to accumulate more, though I like them.  But… butbutbut… but… THE MINIS AWAIT!  And you can find pretty  much every set in any given store, too.  Series 1-4 are just kind of lying around, waiting for purchase.


Here’s the Silverfish.  The Mattel mini is larger than the Jazwares figure (and thus is out of scale), and is more detailed.  These little guys pop out of blocks while you mine!


Remember the Charged Creeper?  Here’s an ordinary one.  Even though the proportions are off, I love the personality this little guy has.  Such a simple design, such an easy MVP.  Crazy, eh?


More recent is the Sneaky Creeper, who comes with terrain to hide around!  This one has about ten times the personality of the regular Creeper, but I kind of wish we could just get the figure on its own – a Creeper leaaaaaaaaning around a corner, because hahaha.  Actually, an X-Acto knife on an extra would solve that if needed.  But dang, this Creeper… he’s gonna blow stuff up.


The Snow Golem is another one of my favorites, and the perfect bridge between Halloween and Christmas.  Even without the Minecraft connection, it’s just a nice little tchotchke.


The Skeleton with Pumpkin Armor is interesting because that isn’t a reused Pumpkin from the golem – it’s a different size!  It’s insane, but Minecraft minis tend to resculpt what thye could reuse, and that attention to detail can be cool.


And here is an ordinary skeleton.  Now that you can compare him with the one up above, you can see the differences in scale – the chibi-fied minis are certainly cuter.


The Wither Skeleton is a darker-colored variant that can put a status effect on you.  It also fights in melee, and occasionally drops skulls, which are used for… DUN DUN DUN…


The Wither is one of three boss monsters in the game.  You have to create it with ither skulls and some sand, but then it turns into something frightening.  I hate to say it, but this mini doesn’t really express that – it kind of needs the full-sized floating ribcage along with its heads.  But still, this is the kind of thing horror movies are made of.


The Enderman is based sort of on Slenderman.  It is a strange, essentially neutral creature from another diension who can teleport, and steals blocks.  But there’s more to it than that, you see.  Don’t look at one.  Don’t ever look at one (i.e., do not let the center point of the camera cross over one).


You looked at it!  This is a Screaming Enderman, and it’s about to kill you.  Yeah, they get that creepy.


Here’s Steve? again, only now he’s fishing.  There are a lot of variants of Steve?, because he is the main guy.


And then here’s Alex?, the main female character.  Her armor isn’t always pink, it’s just the general color for enchanted armor.


This is an ocelot, a wild cat.  A lot of animals show up in the game, competing along with the Lovecraftian horrors.


And this is a tabby housecat.  Now, it looks like the same sculpt as the ocelot, but it isn’t – those stripes are sculpted on!  This is the kind of attention to detail I was talking abou tbefore, though the Guardians might be the best bet.


The wolf – which, of course, can be turned into a dog – is another pretty basic animal.


This bunny rabbit is pretty much the cutest blocky thing ever.  Huge amount of personality for something so simple.


This pig is normal, too.  Funny thing:  Creepers originally came about because of a poorly-programmed pig, with its height and length reversed.  Strange, eh?


The Mooshroom is also livestock, only it is existentially horrifying  This is a cow so riddled with fungus that mushrooms are growing out o fits back.  AUUUGH!  Just looking at it makes me start scratching my arms!  Maybe I have problems.


Hey, remember the zombie horse?  This is an ordinary living one with armor.


But this is a skeletal horse!  And he’s rather cool, with his blockiness translating into awesome bones.


As a final little nod toward neutral creatures, here is a squid, feauring less detail than on a Pac-Man ghost.  It does have a mouth underneath those tentacles, though.


Next up is the Blaze, which is sort of a flaming skull surrounded by smoke and shafts of fire.  The mini manages to put it together reasonably well, though not perfectly, as the original is kind of amorphous.  And, uh, this game features flying flaming skulls as ordinary enemies.  What sort of world is this?


This is a Slime Cube – actually just a large-sized slime, since they come in many colors.  It has a great two-layer translucent effect, and is shaped just right to look like jiggling jello.  It’s really one of the more impressive minis in the line.


And now for one of my favorites, the Guardian.  Guardians are actually blocky – in-game, they have the same texture as temple stone blocks.  These cyclopean pufferfish-statue monsters are wonderfully creepy, and translate extremely well into a figure.


The Elder Guardian is another boss monster in the game, and here’s the thing – it isn’t just a repaint of the normal Guardian figure!  They actually made a new sculpt for it!


Both Guardians are different sizes, their tails are slightly different, and their eyes are oriented – sculpted – differently.  I love that attention to detail!


And finally, let’s run through the zombies.  This is an ordinary, non-armor-wearing zombie.  Gotta love the untucked shirt.


This zombie is on fire, and one of the most hilarious things ever.  Fantastic sculpting job on Mattel’s part, seriously.


And this is the Zombie at the Door.  You see, zombies will bumrush your door at night, and the figures have gotten more strange and specific – sneaky Creepers, zombies at the door, spawning cages, stuff like that.  This guy, as you can see, seems to be carrying his door with him.  It’s honestly a pretty hilarious effect. So, yeah. I like these toys. Too much.


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