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Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Mantaray Action Figure Takara-Tomy, 2013
Day #824: December 31, 2013
Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Mantaray Action Figure Mantaray
My Manta Ray's All Right

Beast Saga Carded Action Figures
Item No.:
BS-37
Manufacturer: Takara-Tomy
Includes: Spear, shield, 2 dice, trading card
Action Feature: Dice launch out of stomach
Retail: 525 yen (or about $7)
Availability: March 2013
Other: Also translated as "Mantarei" early on

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Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Mantaray Action FigureWe toy fans are nothing if not optimistic. New announcements frequently come up promising to revitalize some long lost childhood toy memory, and in the last few years Battle Beasts were given a sudden, tremendous burst of love. LEGO had Legends of Chima, Diamond Select snapped up the Battle Beasts brand and spent more time sitting on it than making stuff so far, even indie darling Onell Design made its Armorvor. Japan's Beast Saga, now seemingly completely dead, managed to recapture the style of the original 1980s toys while skipping the spirit. Many figures look gorgeous, with the upsized 2 1/2-inch figures looking like they're cousins of the originals. Mantarey is a nice update of the original rare Grin Reefer, but with a smaller price tag.

His joints are tight, but obstructed. The legs have very little ability to move, and the arms are blocked by his massive ray head. Since the mid-1990s we've frequently seen style trump functionality, and in the case of figures like these the articulation really doesn't add much to the bottom line of how much fun you'll have. The dice launcher works well, and you can put weapons in his hands, but there were no playsets or vehicles for this scale to interact with and ultimately, the original Battle Beasts had better arm movement.

Sculpting and deco are largely better on these new guys - his head looks like they grafted a manta ray on a mech suit of some sort, with the blue armor featuring numerous aquatic flourishes to give this the appropriate look. Of course it's silly to think a race of water beings would adapt to the future by adding land elements, but whatever, it makes for a nice toy. The darker skin on top and lighter skin on the bottom is a nice touch, and I'm thrilled to see gills on there. There's a nice skin texture on the back of the legs too, showing us that Takara-Tomy made some decent work on this all-too-short-lived line. Start to finish, it began to peter out at about six months and came to a complete stop in under a year. So much for the great "beast" revival - but at least we got a number of nifty figures out of it.

Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Mantaray Action Figure

While I generally don't much personally care what my toys are worth (unless I'm suggesting for you to get one), I have a feeling this is one of those things that will go to the bottom of pop culture's dustbins. The line is pretty fantastic - the selection of creatures was largely smart, and this one in particular is top-notch. I love how it looks on my desk, and some day I'll probably build a nice cabinet (who am I kidding, maybe I'll buy one) for the collection. Yet writing about it now, at the end of the year, I'm more disappointed by what never happened. We never got a penguin, or any dinosaurs, or bugs (mushi!), and I was always holding out hope we'd see repaints in original Battle Beasts colors someday. It's possible there's more coming, but generally speaking once you go a year without much chatter it's pretty much done. It's possible these figures could become expensive some day, but well, look at WebDiver. Nobody cares about those now. If you see this figure, or any of the line, on the cheap I'd suggest grabbing some. They're charming, small, and a wonderful little relaunch that just never got off the ground. I'll try to bring in more here over the coming months, I was always hoping I'd have more to say about new releases... but there aren't any. So get while the getting is good, or don't.

--Adam Pawlus

Additional Images

Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Mantaray Action Figure Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Mantaray Action Figure
Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Mantaray Action Figure Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Mantaray Action Figure
Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Mantaray Action Figure Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Mantaray Action Figure
Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Mantaray Action Figure Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Mantaray Action Figure

Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Mantaray Action Figure Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Mantaray Action Figure
Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Mantaray Action Figure Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Mantaray Action Figure
Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Mantaray Action Figure Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Mantaray Action Figure
Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Mantaray Action Figure

See more Beast Saga figures in Figure of the Day:
Day 495: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Raioga Action Figure
Day 529: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Kingdom of Sea Death Action Figure Set
Day 534: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Dolphin Burst Action Figure
Day 540: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Kingdom of Gloria Action Figure Set
Day 544: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Aldyle Action Figure
Day 549: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Dorfan Action Figure
Day 551: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Eledram Elephant Action Figure
Day 564: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga DX Starter Set Action Figure Set
Day 568: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Tarlock Action Figure
Day 573: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Long Giraf Action Figure
Day 579: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Garrison G Action Figure
Day 580: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga GachaBooster General Hawk Knight Action Figure
Day 586: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Killer Shark Burst Action Figure
Day 585: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Beast Machines Sky Darling Vehicle
Day 593: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Rynas Action Figure
Day 595: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Seylas Action Figure
Day 601: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Bamet Burst Action Figure
Day 616: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Long Giraf Burst Action Figure
Day 622: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Bamet Action Figure
Day 626: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Killer Shark Action Figure
Day 637: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Liorga Action Figure
Day 642: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Aldyle Burst Action Figure
Day 663: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Janjan Action Figure
Day 669: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Ogre Burst Action Figure
Day 678: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Swordbill Action Figure
Day 693: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Guarl Burst Action Figure
Day 715: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Guarl Action Figure
Day 824: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Mantaray Action Figure
Day 828: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Aljaylo Action Figure
Day 839: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Ogre Action Figure
Day 846: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Dakker Action Figure
Day 856: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Moreek Action Figure
Day 873: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Wonderriver Action Figure
Day 937: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Rynas Burst Action Figure
Day 974: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Super Win Deck Impact Set Action Figure Set
Day 993: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Kannigal Burst Action Figure
Day 1,326: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Buffam Action Figure
Day 1,332: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Bunikis Action Figure
Day 1,339: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Aljaylo Burst Action Figure
Day 1,381: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Eledram Burst Action Figure
Day 1,496: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Dacker Burst Action Figure

See more Takara-Tomy figures in Figure of the Day:
Day 180: Takara-Tomy Transformers Animated Ironhide (Bulkhead) Key Chain
Day 435: Takara-Tomy Transformers Prime Gacha Arms Micron Optimus Prime Blaster
Day 476: Takara-Tomy Transformers Prime Bumblebee Sword Action Figure
Day 495: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Raioga Action Figure
Day 529: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Kingdom of Sea Death Action Figure Set
Day 534: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Dolphin Burst Action Figure
Day 540: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Kingdom of Gloria Action Figure Set
Day 544: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Aldyle Action Figure
Day 549: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Dorfan Action Figure
Day 551: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Eledram Elephant Action Figure
Day 564: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga DX Starter Set Action Figure Set
Day 568: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Tarlock Action Figure
Day 573: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Long Giraf Action Figure
Day 579: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Garrison G Action Figure
Day 580: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga GachaBooster General Hawk Knight Action Figure
Day 585: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Beast Machines Sky Darling Vehicle
Day 586: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Killer Shark Burst Action Figure
Day 593: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Rynas Action Figure
Day 595: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Seylas Action Figure
Day 597: Takara-Tomy Transformers Prime Zad Action Figure
Day 601: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Bamet Burst Action Figure
Day 616: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Long Giraf Burst Action Figure
Day 622: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Bamet Action Figure
Day 626: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Killer Shark Action Figure
Day 637: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Liorga Action Figure
Day 642: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Aldyle Burst Action Figure
Day 663: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Janjan Action Figure
Day 669: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Ogre Burst Action Figure
Day 678: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Swordbill Action Figure
Day 693: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Guarl Burst Action Figure
Day 715: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Guarl Action Figure
Day 824: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Mantaray Action Figure
Day 828: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Aljaylo Action Figure
Day 839: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Ogre Action Figure
Day 846: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Dakker Action Figure
Day 856: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Moreek Action Figure
Day 873: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Wonderriver Action Figure
Day 905: Takara-Tomy Transformers Masterpiece Edition Lambor G-2 Ver.
Day 937: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Rynas Burst Action Figure
Day 974: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Super Win Deck Impact Set Action Figure Set
Day 993: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Kannigal Burst Action Figure
Day 1,127: Takara-Tomy Transformers Sega Genesis Megatron Action Figure
Day 1,207: Takara-Tomy Transformers United Rumble & Frenzy
Day 1,224: Takara-Tomy Transformers Adventure Roadblock
Day 1,242: Takara-Tomy Transformers Go! Go
Day 1,247: Takara-Tomy Transformers Go! Sen
Day 1,259: Takara-Tomy Transformers Go! Geki
Day 1,262: Takara-Tomy Transformers Masterpiece Bumble G-2 Ver.
Day 1,273: Takara-Tomy Transformers Go! Ex
Day 1,284: Takara-Tomy Transformers Go! Shou
Day 1,310: Takara-Tomy Transformers Legends Slipstream
Day 1,327: Takara-Tomy Transformers Unite Warriors Grand Scourge
Day 1,328: Takara-Tomy Transformers Unite Warriors Nightbird Shadow
Day 1,326: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Buffam Action Figure
Day 1,328: Takara-Tomy Transformers Adventure Override
Day 1,332: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Bunikis Action Figure
Day 1,339: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Aljaylo Burst Action Figure
Day 1,357: Takara-Tomy Transformers United Stepper
Day 1,381: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Eledram Burst Action Figure
Day 1,429: Takara-Tomy Transformers Legends Armada Starscream Super Mode
Day 1,468: Takara-Tomy Transformers Unite Warriors Grand Galvatron
Day 1,471: Takara-Tomy Zoids Masterpiece Shield Liger
Day 1,496: Takara-Tomy Beast Saga Dacker Burst Action Figure
Day 1,627: Takara-Tomy Transformers Legends Convobat
Day 1,670: Takara-Tomy Transformers Legends Leo Prime

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