NECA is a company known for providing detailed sculpted 7” figures, but now they enter the world of small scale 3.75” action figures with their new Gears of War line. Can NECA provide the same level of detail seen in their larger scale figures with these smaller ones while also providing the articulation that most 3.75” collectors expect from their figures? We take a look at the new Clayton Carmine figure to find out, so read on to see if they pulled it off.
Check out hi-res images for this figure in our GALLERY
The front of the blister card is reminiscent of the game packaging with the Gears of logo and title at the top with a gaming environment and an image of the character underneath. The figure is clearly displayed in the package so you can get a good look at it before purchasing.
The back features more game art at the top with the game logo and title. A brief bio about the character and images of all 3 figures offered in series 1 are shown. Those figures are of Carmine, Baird and Marcus.
NECA has done a pretty good job bringing the detail seen in their 7” figures to this smaller scale line. A lot of detail in the character’s outfit is sculpted in. He even has little details like veins sculpted onto his arms. He has a belt that is a separate piece but isn’t removable unless you remove the legs first. The belt has things like a water cantina sculpted on it, and he has a pouch sculpted on his right leg and extra bullets on his left leg. All three figures in this first series are big, bulky, muscular dudes which NECA does a good job of capturing here. I am curious to see how NECA handles a more frail-looking character in this scale.
The Clayton figure has some nice detailed tattoos painted on his arms, and NECA uses a dark metallic paint on the character’s outfit to give it an armor look similar to the game. They use a metallic blue on the eyes, parts of the helmet and areas of the chest. In certain light, the eyes have that almost lighted effect seen in the game. One thing that seems to be missing is the Gears of War logo and writing on his chest. This is seen on the character art on the package but seems to be missing from the actual figure.
This particular figure has a mask on, so you don’t see his face. I did notice that the other two figures in the wave (which don’t have masks) experience some paint issues on the face, particularly around the eyes. It was only with some of the figures, but it is something I would caution you to check for before making your purchase.
This is an area where NECA has struggled even in their larger scale figures, so I was a little worried about what they would be able to do with these smaller figures. There are certainly a few areas on the figure where articulation would have been nice, but overall they have done a pretty good job making this guy posable.
The head is attached with a ball joint. There is no hinge on the neck, but the actual ball has some movement inside of the sculpted neck so he can look left and right and has pretty good down movement with some limited up movement. The arms are attached with hinged ball joints, and he has hinged elbow joints. A swivel joint in the elbow or bicep area would have been nice here. He does have hinged-swivel wrists which is nice.
He has a swivel waist joint, and the legs are attached in a pretty unique way. The legs actually attach to one another through a plastic piece attached to the figures waist. Each leg is then attached with a pin right under the waist allowing the legs to move outwards. Under this pin is another swivel joint at the thigh. This construction gives the figure a good range of motion; the only drawback is that the pins are fairly visible. You can turn the legs at the swivel joint in such away that the sculpted armor on the leg can kind of hide the pins, but if you turn the leg at all they become visible.
The knees are hinged and can swivel. They can’t bend back very far with the way the armor is sculpted. It hides these joints nicely but limits the knee movement some. There is no ankle articulation at all.
The only accessory this figure comes with is his Lancer weapon. NECA put some nice detailing in the Lancer with its sculpting and paint. Some reddish tint is used on the blade and tip of the gun. I am not sure if this is supposed to be old blood or if that’s just the color in the game. The Lancer also has a little peg that you can use to stick it in a hole on the figure’s back so he can carry the weapon there. He is able to hold the weapon in either hand without any issues.
I think NECA has done a pretty nice job with their first venture into the 3.75” arena. The articulation is not quite on par with a Marvel Universe or G.I. Joe line, but it is decent and what the figure lacks in articulation it makes up in detail. If you are a fan of the Gears of War franchise, then I recommend you check out this line. I look forward to seeing what NECA does in this scale down the road.
Score: 4 out 5