Review - Lara Croft Legend by Tonner Direct

Tonner Doll Company was recently kind enough to send us one of their new 17 inch ( scale) Tomb Raider Legend figures to review. As you probably already know if you're taking the time to visit our humble lil' site, Tomb Raider Legend was a much needed fresh start for the once-esteemed Tomb Raider franchise. Lara Croft reached her peak of popularity in the early 2000's when each new addition in the classic series was guaranteed to sell millions of units, the first Tomb Raider movie tore up the box office (at the time it was the highest grossing movie starring a female lead EVER), and Lara Croft was almost as well known internationally as.oh say Superman or Mickey Mouse. Back in those days Lara's lovely mug was everywhere; she had action figures, candy bars, perfume, energy drinks, t-shirts. She even hawked horribly made French cars.

Unfortunately, Core Design was ultimately unable to advance Tomb Raider much further beyond their breakthrough design for the very first Tomb Raider game that was released in 1996, that along with other landmark titles such as Super Mario 64, ushered in the early era of 3D gaming. Core's first.and last true foray to the 6th generation of video game consoles (PS2, N64, X-Box), Lara Croft: The Angel of Darkness, was an ambitious title but also an utter flop. Almost overnight the vast wave of Lara merchandise that had once saturated retail stores quickly dried up.

After this disaster Core's parent company Eidos was eager to recapture the success that the franchise once possessed and turned over Lara's reins to Crystal Dynamics who had previously handled the successful Gex and Legacy of Kain franchises. Crystal Dynamics released the commercially and critically successful Tomb Raider Legend in 2006 and followed up this hit with an equally-well received reboot of Lara's first adventure, Tomb Raider Anniversary, the following year. As a result of Legend and Anniversary, Lara Croft was very much in demand again and she even became a heroine to a brand new generation of gamers.

Since fans are once again clamoring for collectables of Lady Croft, Tonner Doll Company is only too happy to oblige by offering up their gorgeous new figure.

The figure comes packed in a lovely glossy black box embossed with the TR Legend logo. The thing is just too pretty to throw away once you've taken the figure out. You can also see what care Tonner has taken in hand-packaging each unit. All of Lara's accessories come individually packed and the figure itself is lovingly tied to the box with lace ribbons. Such care insures that your new toy is going to be in excellent shape when it arrives on your doorstep.

After actually opening everything and getting ready to set the figure up we realized that we've never seen such detail on a doll costume, in fact it looks better than some of pieces people have made to cosplay at conventions. We wish Toner would make full scale pieces for look-a-likes to wear! Putting everything on the figure reminded Lara so much of getting ready for Dragon*Con! It's a really cool addition to have bits you can take on and off the figure that makes her a bit more interactive than a statue.

Lara comes equipped with:
- 2 pistols
- 3 grenades that fit either in her hand or clip to her belt
- gun belt with garters
- backpack
- socks
- boots

While all the accessories are gorgeously detailed, Toner gets extra credit on the boots for featuring perfect little working zippers and buckles.

Her rooted hair was a bit messy right out of the box, but is nothing a quick comb-through won't fix! This figure's face is really lovely, she has some subtle make-up on, it looks just right. We're sure Toner went through a whole mess of prototypes before finally choosing the final look for her.

The figure is very posable with lots of points of articulation. She stands up just fine on her own too despite being a top-heavy (which Lara naturally tends to be anyway ^_^), which is a nice surprise when you consider the majority of the industry-leading McFarlane Toys line, which look fantastic, but will topple over if you so much as breathe on them. You can't exactly pose her to high kick an imaginary Larsen or Pierre, but she'll sit or stand on your desk or shelf just fine. She comes with a stand as well if you care to use it. Some of the smaller parts of the accessories, like the trigger guards on the pistols, are delicate and have the potential to break if you're not careful though. A little bit of krazy glue will fix you right up if this happens though.

All and all we were very impressed by this piece! If you are a hardcore Lara fan and have the scratch, we would certainly recommend picking up Toner's new figure! All of the special little touches will really make it an enjoyable and welcome addition to your Tomb Raider collection.

The Tonner Doll action figure sells for $124.99 US plus shipping.

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FINAL SCORE: Lara Croft Tomb Raider Legend Figure from Tonner Direct gets 9 CANS OF BEANS OUT OF 10

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