Toy Fair 2017: Halo Mattel 6″ Figures Wave 2! Arbiter! Vale!

Given the almost nonexistent flow of news from Mattel about their Halo 6″ Figures Collector’s Series, I was sort of dreading the possibility of attending the New York Toy Fair 2017 this weekend and hearing that the 6″ Halo line was cancelled. But as it turns out, no news really is good news: a whole second wave of Mattel Halo figures debuted at the show, including The Arbiter, Buck, Vale, Atriox, an Imperial Grunt Build-A-Figure and more!

New York Toy Fair 2017 Mattel Halo Wave 2 6" Figures

Okay, let me start with a disclaimer: I was not exuberant about the paint apps or plastic quality on the first wave of Collector Series Halo action figures Mattel put out last year, and I thought the quality control on Fred and Kelly was downright disgustingly awful.

But as bad as some of the traits of Wave 1 were, I did like some of the sculpting and playability that the figures had. So if you’re like me and at a minimum didn’t hate Series 1, the Imperial Grunt Build-A-Figure Series is more of the same… except maybe a little bit better.

Mattel Halo Imperial Grunt Build-A-Figure Toy Fair 2017This time out, you’ll be able to put together the Mattel Imperial Grunt Build-A-Figure by combining the extra pieces obtained from purchasing all six figures in the set.

2017 Toy Fair Imperial Grunt Halo 6" Figure MattelI’m not at all thrilled with this BAF for several reasons. First off, once again the army-builder is inexplicably the wave’s Build-A-Figure. This makes zero sense. Zero! “Want six Grunts? Buy $720 worth of figures!” Ridiculous.

Mattel New York Toy Fair 2017 Halo Imperial Grunt 6" FigureThe real damning thing here, though, is that the mostly unpainted  fleshy skin on this Imperial Grunt figure looks downright awful. This is the worst-looking 6″ Halo figure Mattel has shown off so far, unfortunately.

NY Toy Fair 2017 Halo Spartan Vale Figure Mattel*Achem* Now that I’ve gotten my biggest gripe out of the way, let’s look at some figures I actually do like–which is most of them.

Spartan Vale Mattel Halo 6" FigureWhile I’m far from being a Spartan Fireteam Osiris fanboy, the Mattel Spartan Vale 6″ figure looks outstanding.

Toy Fair Halo Mattel Vale Spartan Action Figure Close-UpThe shiny red armor on Vale doesn’t need a paint wash as desperately as some other colored armors do, making the Mattel Vale among their best-looking Halo figures thus far.

New York Toy Fair 2017 Halo Mattel Spartan Buck FigureVale’s teammate Nathan Fillion–Er, I mean “Buck”, is looking almost as good. This is the first unmasked human head Mattel has done for the Halo Collector Series, and I think it looks pretty decent.

Halo Collector's Series Buck Spartan 6" FigureI think a paint wash would really enhance the look of Buck’s silver Spartan armor, but it looks “good enough” as it is–certainly better than any of the Wave 1 Spartans.

Side View of Mattel Halo 6" Spartan Buck FigureThe Master Chief is back again in Wave 2, and this time he’s got improved feet (meaning “without armor that constantly flops around”) and a sniper rifle.

Mattel Halo Wave 2 Master Chief Figure with Sniper RifleI’m sure many collectors are going to want to pass on this Chief, but it’s important for Mattel to keep the most popular character in circulation, and at least this is an improved version of him.

Halo 5 Wave 2 Packaging Build-A-Imperial Grunt Figure PackagingNote that the Wave 2 Master Chief will come with Inperial Grunt BAF pieces, so you have to buy the Chief if you want to build the Grunt.

Mattel Halo 6" Arbiter Figure Toy Fair 2017Rounding out the Halo 5 characters, it’s our first 6″ Arbiter from Halo 5!

Side View of Halo 5 Arbiter Figure Mattel Toy Fair 2017This Arbiter figure has gotten a lot of flak since being shown yesterday, but I think the sculpting here is some of Mattel’s best work thus far with the Halo line.

2017 Toy Fair Halo 5 Mattel Arbiter FigureWhile I don’t disagree that the paint deco could be much improved, there’s a ton of sculpting detail here and I dig the red Energy Sword. I think this figure will really win over some folks when they see it in-person.

Mattel Halo Wars 2 Spartan Jerome and Atriox FiguresThe final two figures unveiled at the Mattel Toy Fair event yesterday were actually the only two figures they’d previously shown off for the wave: Atriox and Spartan Jerome-092.

Mattel Halo Wars 2 Spartan Jerome 6" FigureMy heart belongs to Halo Wars, so any action figure of Jerome is a guaranteed purchase by me. That said, I’m not as happy with this Spartan Jerome figure as I really want to be.

Spartan Jerome Mattel 6" Halo FigureWithout any paint wash or weathering, Jerome’s green armor looks awfully plastic–like one of those little green army men.

Halo Wars 2 Mattel Red Leader Spartan 6" FigureAs I said, any figure of Red Leader is an auto-purchase from me, but this figure will require some customizing to really meet its potential.

Close-Up of Mattel Halo Atriox Figure Toy Fair 2017Last but not least, it’s the leader of The Banished Jiralhanae–Brute Chieftain Atriox from “Halo Wars 2”!

Toy Fair 2017 Mattel Halo Atriox Six Inch Figure

This is the very first Brute figure Mattel has tackled, and I think it’s an overall solid first effort. Atriox is large and imposing, his face paint looks good, and the figure is a 100% new sculpt that doesn’t reuse any preexisting tooling.

The only real weakness of the Atriox figure is the whole line’s weakness: paint apps. The minimalist approach to paint deco Mattel takes simply does not work on gritty, realistic Halo characters like Atriox (and pretty much any other Halo character).

Halo Wars 2 Atriox Mattel 6" Figure Toy Fair 2017The Mattel Halo Wave 2 figures are scheduled to be released in Spring 2017, although there’s aren’t any concrete release window dates known at this time. I’ll post an update to the Gamer Toy News Facebook Page and Twitter Feed once we receive more information about these figures and again with link when they go up for order.

Thoughts on Wave 2, Halo collectors? Is this a step forward, a step back, or not a step in any direction for the Mattel Halo 6″ figures line? Which figures–if any–will you be snatching from this series?

Comments

Toy Fair 2017: Halo Mattel 6″ Figures Wave 2! Arbiter! Vale! — 12 Comments

  1. I’m not gonna lie, I’m really excited for this series.

    I have (almost) the entire first wave of Mattel’s Halo figures, and while they aren’t perfect by any means, I like them a lot and the line shows a great deal of promise. Jerome and Buck were two characters I was hoping to see since the announcement of Wave 1, and to get them so soon makes me really, REALLY happy.

    I was kind of hoping Jerome would come with a newly-tooled MA5B assault rifle, but the newly-tooled M90 shotgun is almost as good. (I have a soft spot for the classic AR.) I’ll be picking up the new Chief, since he seems to be sporting a new battle-damaged deco on top of his sculpt improvements and I always welcome sniper rifles into my accessory bins.

    Now all we need are some ODSTs and then the party can REALLY get started. (I’d love to see Mattel complete The Squad, since McFarlane never got the chance.)

  2. VALE! 😀

    I was worried about Mattel’s 6″ line, too; this post came as a huge relief. XD Vale and Arby will be my first acquisitions, hopefully.

  3. Nice review! These photos are way better than the Toyark post.

    Also please keep in mind these are prototypes (not paint masters or production samples). Compare what was shown at TF last year and what shipped. You’ll notice the colors shift as much of the figure is cast in colored plastic. This also means finer details with the sculpts for areas unpainted.

  4. Is there any news on the Buck figure?
    Though I doubt they’ll make him unable to wear his helmet I’m just making sure because I’m kind of worried as well

  5. Line looks great! I made my own Vale for Mcfarlane but am glad to see an official one finally. I am absolutely thrilled to see Halo Wars figures… you don’t know how much I love seeing other Spartan II characters made IN proper scale with Master Chief! The classic green armor (and not the Halo 5 skittles crap) is really a nice thing to see come to life.

    Happy to see the Halo fanbase is still alive and that you will continue to post. I haven’t bought my Fred and Kelly figures yet… but I may have to now with this new line 🙂 I thought I was going to quit.

    -HaloFrontier

  6. I’ve almost completed my Mattel Halo collection, and it seems to be just in time for wave 2! I think every figure here has me excited except the grunt and the Arbiter (I just never found the Halo 5 Arbiter Armor to be interesting).

    If nothing else, I’m hoping that either series 3 or a revision case will bring us Tanaka so we can complete both teams.

    Vale and Buck look really good, Jerome and Atriox look good, and Chief and Arbiter look average. I hope these drop soon. I’d hate to wait until the middle of summer to get these guys.

  7. Finally! Vale gets a decent figure.
    I’m sorry, but Vale has been long overdue in a full out figure. The figure looks promising. I’m thinking about the Arbiter, The new Chief has potential to live up to, the snipet will be nice.