For those that remembered Cerevo’s amazing Dominator gun from the anime Psycho-Pass, the company has followed up with an adorable walking and talking Tachikoma toy from Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex and it is utterly lovely.
With an anime such as Stand Alone Complex, there have been a fair few Tachikoma toys released over the years but Cerevo’s entry is quite a bit different.
To explain a bit about the Tachikomas themselves, their origins go back to the original Ghost in the Shell manga by Masamune Shirow. Called Fuchikomas, these were artificially intelligent quadruped mecha that could also be piloted by human operators.
In Stand Alone Complex, these Fuchikomas were replaced with Tachikomas that are broadly similar but with greater emphasis on their AI.
In the anime, the Tachikomas are quite cute and had quite a distinctive personality. However, their AI caused issues and they were later replaced by the somewhat simpler Uchikomas. However, these actually look closer to the original Fuchikomas, just to make things more confusing.
So what Cerevo has attempted here is to try and bring these Tachikomas to life, though obviously at a smaller scale.
That means that much like in the anime, this Tachikoma toy can talk, analyze its surroundings and move around.
The toy itself is quite chatty and has a single camera in the forward “eye” dome, this allows it to process image data and coupled with your explanations, this information can then be stored in the cloud for other Tachikoma toys to reference.
This is a callback to the anime, as at the end of each mission, the Tachikomas would share their respective experiences and the group as a whole learned from that. In the same way, showing an apple to your Tachikoma toy means that data is shared with other Tachikoma toys in the cloud and the group collectively learns as a result.
The voice of the Tachikoma is also faithfully reproduced from Stand Alone Complex and Cerevo hired the original voice actress Sakiko Tamagawa to record all new dialogue specifically for this Tachikoma toy.
You can also pair your Tachikoma toy with a mobile companion app that allows you to control it directly, so you can drive it around and have it perform various poses.
The version I got to play with was the special edition with extra aluminum detailing parts but the toy itself is functionally identical to the standard release.
As you would expect from the fact it is 1/8 scale, this is a big toy and the sculpt as well as the detailing are very accurate to the design from the anime. It is also quite sturdy but the connection to the abdomen at the rear needs to be handled with care.
However, what is different here is that this is a fully motorized toy, so that means the arms, legs, abdomen, front eye all move around. So this isn’t the same as a high-end display piece and its price point reflects that.
While I tend to cover many expensive collectible toys from Japan, Cerevo’s Tachikoma toy costs considerably more than those do. In that, the standard version of the toy costs $1,799 whereas the special edition with extra aluminum detailing costs $1,999.
That is obviously a lot of money for either version but the big difference here is that this is a fully motorized toy that can talk to you and access the internet. In doing so, it tries to recreate what it would be like to actually own a Tachikoma, though one that is smaller than in the anime.
As someone that loves Stand Alone Complex and Ghost in the Shell in general, seeing and playing with Cerevo’s Tachikoma toy was genuinely amazing. While I was already very impressed with Cerevo’s Dominator gun, this Tachikoma toy is in a whole other league and hearing Sakiko Tamagawa’s dialogue emanating from this bundle of fun was really rather adorable.
Cerevo’s 1/8 scale Tachikoma toy is now available to buy and can be shipped globally. Currently, the toy only talks in Japanese but it can understand English.
Read my Forbes blog here.
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