I’ve been following the guys at Action Figure Displays since their first release. The first set I reviewed was the Alley Set, followed by the City display.Â By the time of the second set they had increased the height of the displays to 10 Â½”, showing a committment to improving their product at the advice of their fans.
Now, just in time for the holiday season, AFD has a second series of displays that are even better tailored to specific toys and toy lines. They now have great displays for anime, cartoons (Family Guy), superheroes, horror figures, G.I. Joe/Transformers, and the subject of this review, the Dark World Castle, which is clearly evocative of Masters of the Universe and perfect for vintage, 200X and Classic MOTU figures.
The design is clearly evocative of Castle Grayskull and Eternia (without being copyright-infringing). I’m not sure how AFD creates and executes the art on these displays, but the interplay of light and shadow on this particular set is very well executed, providing a 3D effect that you can clearly see in the photos. The set also does a great job of creating a sense of depth and distance, as seen on the Moria-like chasm and bridge in the background.
As I mentioned, the current AFD sets are larger than the first few, as shown here. You still put them together by pushing the bottom part onto the adhesive tabs of the background. One feature I’d love to see added in the future are hinges on the black tabs, so that the set can be folded flat for easy storage–or perhaps by splitting the plastic tabs into two parts and making them detachable.
This is my favorite AFD display set so far, and one that will hold a permanent place in my collection. It’s ideal for MOTUC, and barring Mattel making a MOTUC-scale Grayskull (except maybe as a giveaway for five people at SDCC someday), it’s one of the best options for enhancing your collection display.
I know some of you are a bit hesitant about spending the money on these displays, but hey, that’s what the holidays are for. So if you’re a big MOTUC fan, or you know a big MOTUC fan, this just might be the perfect gift.
And remember, Battle Cat’s coming in February, and this set is just the right size to display He-Man astride his mighty steed…
It'd be cool to have 2-3 backgrounds that when put together make up one big diorama, but separately would be fine by themselves.
@RageTreb: I think offering extensions is a great idea, and might be their next step…that and the hinges I recommended.
It'd be nice if they had extensions for the scene. Like, more of the chasm to the left and more of the castle to the right. My display is too long for this thing.
Pretty cool displays,I hope they could make those old 3d/lenticular images that change when you look at an angle like those comicbook cover gimmicks or the Visionaries/Supernatural toy line features.
Another awesome looking display! I agree, they do a great job with the depth and lighting. Their "command center" display (or whatever its called) truly looks 3D! I'd love one of these, but for now its low priority.
looks good. i wish you could string a few together. i will wait to see what it looks like with other people's collections first.
i wish it was more substantial than just printed material and had a bit of texture and depth but then that would be getting into diorama and playset territory.
i hope the stands that matty will be selling look great with this.
Very nice display. I've got two of the first run and they're nice pieces for the toy shelf. My MOTUC figs are use Grayskull, but I could see sticking a couple of this on this display.
At the very least these make excellent backdrops for toy photos. That last shot with Skeletor really shows how well the base blends into the background.