When I discovered that Figuarts had a subsidiary called D-Arts that focused on videogames, I was all in! Unfortunately, it turns out D-Arts lacked some of the quality control that Figuarts has, and no figure is a better example of this than Venusaur...well, except maybe Mega Man, but that's a differen't story. Venusaur is one of only 4 figures in the Pokemon D-Arts line, the others being Blastoise, Charizard, and Mewtwo. Recently, the D-Arts line was dissolved and the next release planned for the line, Lucario, will be handled by Figuarts.
I must say that this line of figures has some of my favorite box designs. The Pokemon figures really look good inside their packaging, and I actually would understand if someone decided to display them inside the box (especially Venusaur). As you may notice, the word "Venusaur" is nowhere to be found on the box. As this is a Japanese figure, it is instead listed under its Japanese name of "Fushigibana".
The Paint details on venusaur, as well as the rest of the Pokemon D-Arts, is really well done. It has a very smooth finish that's almost velvety on the skin. I do feel the need to nitpick though. Venusaur's body has "warts" at certain places, but they aren't shaded or painted any differently, so they're hard to notice. The leaves also have a weird panel lining that looks almost like a child got a hold on a Gundam marker. The eyes are very expressive, and the flower is well detailed.
Venusaur is loaded with articulation, but very little of it is practical or useful. You may notice a lack of photos in this review, and that is simply because it's nearly impossible to do more than 3 poses. Luckily most of the ugly stuff is covered up by either being on the bottom of the figure of being under the tree and leaves. On its belly, Venusaur has a sort of plated design that looks like it might allow for some butt swivel for lack of a better term, but it doesn't. It does, however, allow his head to move up and down ever so slightly. Both the hind legs and forelegs feature the same articulation. They are attached at their bases via a ball joint. While the back legs get a decent range of motions, the front legs are incapable of much. The feet are much more versatile. They are also on ball joints, but they can rock and turn any way you would desire. Each leg's midsection also has a separate pace, though I'm really not sure why. It seems pretty useless to me. The coolest articulated part of this feature is the mouth, which features a fully pained tongue when opened, and when closed, allows Venuaur's teeth to protrude.
the four leaves are on tiny ball joints, which means you can adjust them how you please, but they have a tendency to fall out of their sockets while you're moving them and are a royal pain to get back in. The petals feature similar articulation, though they can also be lifted up and folded down. While they seem sturdier than the leaves, they still have a tendency to fall out. The only accessories Vensuaur includes are vine whip effect parts, which while well sculpted are not very practical. There are 2 sets of 4 pieces that can be attached to lengthen the effect as you desire, and the end pieces have ball joints that snap into sockets underneath Venusaur's leaves. These sockets and joints are the main quality control complaint, as several Venusaur's, including my own, have issues supporting the vines. In my case, only the left socket had this issue, however, when preparing to take photos for this review, yet another issue revealed itself as the vine snapped and the ball joint. It could be repaired with a Pin vise, but I'm not sure if I'm going to even bother. Unfortunately, Venusaur does not come with any razor leaves or even a solar beam effect part.
The final thing of note is that Venusaur includes a Tamashe stage with a Pokeball design on it, and that's pretty rad. Venusaur is loaded with issues and it's pretty much impossible that I recommend you get one unless you're like me and you absolutely love Pokemon to the point that you want it just because it says Pokemon on the box. Because this line has been discontinued, they are becoming hard to find. You'll be hard pressed to find a Venusaur any lower than $50, though they are generally found $60-$80. I lucked out and got mine for $33, but that was a miracle, so don't count on it.
+the mouth articulation is cool