3A Halo toy license

Hi Waypoint. I’m coming to post this because I got my 3A Halo 4 Master Chief figure in the mail yesterday. Some facts about this figure: I paid $240 for it. There are pictures and a detailed description of the figure’s features here. As you can see, they’ve got a variety of pictures showcasing the figure wielding weapons in action poses, using its articulation to appear dynamic and exciting, even with its weapon accessories magnetically mounted to its back! The figure was supposed to be the Master Chief figure from Halo 4. At its price and how it looked, it was shaping up to be that way. Here is the list of the figure’s features, pulled straight from that official store.

> - Figure Stands 13.5-Inches (34.3cm) Tall
> - Over 35 Points of Articulation Featuring Fully Articulated Fingers
> - All Rifles Magnetically Attach to Shoulder Armor
> - Illuminated Helmet Featuring 4 LED Lights
> - Highly-Detailed Sculpt and Paint Application
> - Z-250 LightRifle with light-up feature [Bambaland Exclusive Weapon]
> - ARC-920 Railgun
> - MA5D Assault Rifle
> - M11 Combat Knife
> BATTERY REQUIREMENTS [Batteries Not Included]
> - AG1 x 3 Button Cell Batteries
> - CR2032H x 1 Battery for Z-250 LightRifle

As you can see, with a huge loadout, such dynamic articulation, magnetic weapon mounts, and functioning LED lights, this figure was a reason to get excited! However, as I said, I received mine yesterday and was shocked to take it out of the box and see it was a piece of crap. I did some digging on some collector forums external to these ones and found I wasn’t the only one having these issues. Literally everybody who has received this figure is having a number of common issues:

  • Figure’s finger articulation is too weak to hold its weapons - The figure’s fingers are actually too thick to fit into the trigger guards of some of its weapons - The elbow articulation is so tight that it can’t even bend to a ninety degree angle - The figure’s shoulder articulation is even worse, featuring unratcheted joints which slide around in their sockets according to gravity; the figure cannot hold its arms out by itself - Because of all the articulation issues in its arms, the figure cannot hold any of its weapons, despite the promotional pictures featuring the figure holding all of its weapons - Despite what was advertised, the figure features no articulation in its hips or thighs, meaning it can’t actually take any of the dynamic stances in its promotional pictures - The advertised magnets mounted in the figure’s weapons and shoulders that would allow him to holster his accessories magnetically are too weak to attach the weapon to the character’s back; the feature is literally broken - The figure’s rubber suit is too loose, obstructing whatever articulation does workThe figure is basically only good as a “museum” piece - that is, something that will stand straight vertically up without any of its accessories on a shelf somewhere. It can’t be posed dynamically and very few of its advertised features actually work. The reason this is a big deal is because this isn’t the figure they hyped. Their promotional pictures, still available to view, show a figure exploding with stable articulation which can wield its weapons, stick them to its back, or strike a dynamic wide-legged action stance stably.
    Unfortunately, it’s not just that my figure is defective. I did some digging on around the internet and found a collector forum where a bunch of users received this figure and have been ranting about it for the past two days. Here is a link to where the discussion starts, if you want to see feedback outside of my own. You can see the discussion begins positively, but it doesn’t take long for it to sour as people begin to play with the figure and realize this isn’t the same figure they advertised to us in those pre-orders. I’ll post a few of the other opinions here in quote blocks:

> The easiest weapon to hold for him is the railgun but he can’t hold it straight with one arm and he can’t maneuver it to let his other hand support it. The worst part is there’s no one to blame but ourselves for continuing to pay 3a to -Yoink- lines they don’t care about. You can tell they gave zero consideration to the previous figures because chief can’t hold any of their weapons either. Thankfully Emile and Carter have thin fingers, heck I’ve got Emile dual wielding the shotgun and battle rifle and he can actually hold the rifle straight out without slipping. Mind boggling.
> *LOL the feet themselves have AMAZING strong articulation but the waist and thighs STILL DON’T making it a wasted feature. As someone who spends a great deal of time half-assing stuff I recognize a master at work.
> **I WILL say this, the accuracy and detail is really amazing. Perfectly accurate and the figure itself looks and feels fantastic. Just need those pistols from the recruit/thorne or custom made guns
> ***Main hand issue is the fingers can’t grasp stuff because the thick palm is in the way. Probably screen accurate but can’t grip stuff except with the thumb and index. Meaning the knife looks odd in hand too.

> I got home and found my figure waiting for me and it kills me to say this but the figure is HUGELY disappointing.
> It feels like a barbie doll and the rubber suit looks ridiculous. I don’t understand why it isn’t just a hard plastic. The figure can’t hold any weapon and the articulation is terrible. Elbow joint won’t even go 90 degrees and if he holds any weapon it pulls his arm down so he can’t raise it. His arms can’t cross over his chest at all so I haven’t found a way to have him hold any weapon in both hands.
> The materials feel cheap and crappy and I have trouble standing him without a base. Batteries weren’t even included. At MOST this figure should have been $120. If you’re on the fence, don’t buy! And this is coming from a massive Halo fan.
> EDIT: Sorry, adding more rant as I play around with the figure. I also can’t get the weapons to stick to his back. Unless I’m doing completely wrong - the magnets are super weak. Just checked to see if Bambaland does returns. Nope. Seriously, $240 for this?!? Ugh.

> this figure seriously disapointed me. it was my first jump into their halo line after reservations about their previous releases. and it seems i was right to be dubious. i opened the box and was blown away. the details and weathering are unbelievable. then i tried posing him…err…did they forget to put articulation in this thing? or maybe they put it all in his fingers? his shoulders have really good ratcheted outwards joints. they click into place and feel solid. but his swinging arm articulation is awful. lift his arm up and it just droops back down. and then you move south and it just gets worse and worse. not even 90 degree elbow range of movement. practically non-existent waist and hip articulation (you can hear and feel VERY weak ratchets but they’re worthless) seriously, from the shoulders down the figure may as well be a dogs hollow rubber chew toy. and then on top of that he can’t hold weapons to save his life.

343 Industries: As you can see, this figure was a failure on the level of Halo: The Master Chief Collection. I remind you, it was $240! You’ve got to ensure better quality control on these licenses. You better not let 3A do any more figures, either.

Also, because I didn’t have any room left on my above post, here is a copy of the e-mail I’ve been plastering on 3A’s social media sites and have emailed to their Customer Service:

> Hi,
> Back in November, I purchased the Bambaland exclusive LightRifle version of the Master Chief that 3A just recently shipped out. I paid about $240 for it total, which seemed like a more than fair price based on the product description and the promotional photos featured on the website. However, I received the figure yesterday and have found that it lacks some of the most basic functions something sold as an “action figure” should be able to perform. Further, I have found the description of the product and the promotional pictures supplied by 3A to be false advertising. The description of the figure remarks on the astounding thirty-five points of articulation on the figure, including fully articulated fingers. The fingers, first of all, are completely useless when they’re too thick to fit in the trigger guard on some of the figure’s accessories, meaning the figure can’t actually wield his guns. He actually can’t even wield the weapons that DO fit in his hands. You guys haven’t engineered the finger joints to be stiff enough. Every single one of the weapons falls right out, including the M11 Combat Knife.
> The articulation you guys resplendently highlight in both the description and the photos is a huge lie. The figure features no stable articulation in its hips or thighs, making dynamic poses completely impossible, as the lack of joint stability in those areas causes the figure to fall over almost immediately. I can only get him to stand stably in a straight-up “musuem” pose - and even then, he’s wiggly. So why did you guys post pictures of his legs spread, one forward and one back, knees bent? The actual retail figure can’t do that.
> Honestly, the arms and shoulders are no better. The forearm armor, for one thing, is too big. This inhibits the joint mobility, meaning you can’t even get a ninety-degree bend - necessary for the character to wield a two-handed weapon - out of the joint. The size of the forearm armor is also not game-accurate - placing the figure alongside a Halo 4 gameplay render of the character reveals that the game featured a Master Chief with much smaller forearm armor. Reducing its size would increase the articulation mobility and also make the figure more game-accurate.
> The shoulders are also noteworthy as being bad. They’ve got ratcheted outward joints that allow for the character to stably extend his arms straight out from his sides. However, there is literally no stability when trying to extend his arms out front - again, necessary for the character to wield a two-handed weapon. I keep finding, every single time I try, that the shoulders CAN extend in front of and behind the character, but that there are no ratchets ensuring the articulation stability, so, as soon as I let go of the figure, the arms roll back to his sides immediately.
> This shoulder instability works together with the limited elbow mobility and unstable finger articulation to ensure that the Master Chief can NEVER hold ANY of his weapons. Once I get his fingers to FINALLY somewhat firmly grip his weapon, I have to contend with trying to find an angle to bend the elbows so that both hands can be on the weapon. Once I’ve contended with that, I then have to find a way to try and “lock” the shoulders. By the time I’ve found that angle, the tension from the character’s articulation bending beyond its limits causes his fingers to rip quite easily from the weapon’s handle, causing the weapon to fall out of his hands and his arms to fall back down to his sides. So why did you guys give us pictures of him holding each of his three weapons? He can’t stably hold ANY of them. His shoulder joints don’t allow him to hold his arms out. His elbow joints don’t allow his hands to connect with his gun across his chest armor. It doesn’t work on the retail figure - why advertise the functionality in the promotional pictures?
> The magnets on the figure are also astoundingly weak. The figure’s description reads “All Rifles Magnetically Attach to Shoulder Armor” and the promotional pictures show the Master Chief in all sorts of dynamic poses with a weapon slung magnetically across his back, like in the game. On the retail figure I received, I can’t get the magnets to even weakly connect. If I lay the figure on its “stomach” and place the weapon on his back, I can feel a slight pull from the hidden magnets at work. However, as soon as I stand the figure back up, the weapon falls from his back. Why advertised magnet-mounted weapons if you’re not even going to QA test the magnets to ensure they’re strong enough to hold the weapon in a simple standing-up “museum” pose? It seems like the most basic possible quality to check to perform - “Can this figure perform this feature we advertised”?
> My final gripe is that this figure is not game accurate at all. In some places, it’s not even “Highly Detailed” (as the description says). Simply placing it next to a game render of the character from Halo 4 reveals that the gash across the character’s chest is very inaccurate in its paint application, the small triangle of wedges protruding from the character’s feet armor are arranged wrong, and the figure’s “undersuit” is supposed to be black, rather than gray.
> Honestly, your figure is crap. I paid $240 for a figure expecting a few basic things to be functional at a higher, premium level: articulation that would stably allow for some dynamic poses, finger articulation that allowed the character to stably grip his weapons, back and weapon magnets allowing the character to magnetically holster his weapon, and a game-accurate, super-detailed representation of this beautiful character. All of these features were showcased in the product description and the promotional pictures. They were clearly advertised and THAT was the figure I paid for. The one you guys sent me is not that figure. It has almost none of the advertised features. The one you guys sent me is an overpriced piece of crap.
> I’ve also got plenty of evidence to indicate the problems I’m having are actually universal. Everybody I’ve spoken with who also ordered this figure is having the exact same problems. This isn’t just my figure being supremely defective - you guys clearly were intentionally lazy in designing this.
> I don’t appreciate false advertising, so I am honestly tempted to not do business with 3A again. You guys have duped me. However, a few things would restore my good faith in the brand. If you could issue me even a partial refund, ideally without having to recall the crap figure already in my hands, that would be okay with me. If you guys recalled my figure and sent me one with all of my constructive criticism taken into account (basically a figure that is actually as advertised), I would really appreciate that the most. The best thing you could do would be to recall all of the figures and send out a completely new batch to everyone who ordered.
> If you want documentation of all of my figure’s problems, I would be happy to send you photos and videos showing off the figure’s failure to fulfill the bullet points in its description. There are many people across the internet already sharing such documentation. Please get back to me as soon as possible.
> Thank you,
> dude527

Update on the situation: 3A is offering full refunds on the figure for “any customer unhappy with their order”. This is a cool development for people who are so disgusted by the figure that they want nothing to do with it ever again. For the rest of us, it’s really bad form for 3A. They’ve been stringing us along on the hype train for this figure since November 2014, just after Halo: The Master Chief Collection launched. Everybody was clamoring for a one-sixth scale Master Chief and this figure seemed to be the definitive version. Now it’s released as an even-worse-than-botched attempt and the company who put it out isn’t saying anything other than “Apologies for any inconvenience caused …”? They’re treating it like they’re an ice cream shop out of a certain flavor we wanted! They advertised a figure and completely failed to deliver on every level! They should have no right to wash their hands of that until they rightfully rectify it. A full refund for any dissatisfied customer isn’t worth the fuss - the return international shipping costs are shouldered by the customers alone. It’s pretty bunk to release a completely one-hundred percent broken figure and then make fans shoulder the cost for returns.

343 Industries, I really implore you to seek more responsibility out of your licensees than this. Halo is a premium, top notch brand. For one thing, its premium, top notch figures deserve better than this. For another thing, fans willing to dish out two-hundred and forty dollars for a collectible action figure deserve much better treatment than this for their insane brand loyalty. Please, 343 Industries, get on the phone with 3A and have them set this one right. I’m more than a little irked to have spent almost eight months and two-hundred-and-forty dollars so hyped for a figure and, in the end, all I’ll have to show for it is a thirty-plus-dollar fee to ship it back to them. This is an unacceptable situation.