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Street Fighter Round 3
GEN

Gen is an aged Chinese assassin, highly skilled in the traditional martial art of kenpo. Despite his abilities, he eventually falls to disease. Rather than submit passively, he looks for a worthy challenger to fight him to the death.

Gen was one of the original Street Fighters from the notorious first game. Back then, he was very much just a stereotypical "old man fighter" character. You've seen them in anime before. They look like they're 200 years old, act like hermits, and fight like demons.

Capcom revived him along with some of his other SF1 comrades like Birdie and Adon for the Street Fighter Alpha / Zero series, where he became a playable character for the first time. Unlike most of the others, Gen had a very unique playing style that relied on timing and combos, and could switch between two fighting techniques: the Kiryuu and the Souryuu, each with their own special moves.

There's a short history to this Gen figure. Being an old man and all doesn't seem very good for sales (I'm sure Hasbro has many stories to tell when it comes to Star Wars). Gen was once bumped from his spot in this wave to an online exclusive, with Dimitri from Darkstalkers taking his spot. Thankfully, Dimmy's gone to join his fellow Darkstalker brethren for a new series coming soon, and Gen's back where he belongs.

Gen comes with the usual extra head. The difference being that the other head has a wry-eyed smirk, which I think was done to resemble his Street Fighter Alpha 3 player portrait. I can't think of another suitable expression (Gen is one of those strong, silent, inexpressive types) so it works, but there's been some feedback that the change is a bit too subtle. Overall, I feel that his head, while recognizable, could have been a little sharper and dynamic, sculpt-wise. 

So, at first glance, Gen doesn't seem very impressive. He's in a stuffy Chinese garb, and he's old. Why would you want such a figure?

The simple answer is: because he rocks. Now I don't like Gen much as a character, and I don't play him a lot either, but as a Kung fu fan, and a toy fan, this fella is sweet.

For one thing, Gen comes with 3 sets of hands (count em!). You get the generic open and closed fists, as well as his crane-like pose that is part of his signature fighting style. That makes for a lot of mixing and matching! All his hands look aggressive and action-ready, so it should be easy to find a set and a pose that you like. A slight irk for some may be that you can't put his sleeves together. They don't reach each other, and they point the wrong way.

  

Add to this, a very wide range of articulation! I know I'd be ticked if an agile character like Gen ended up being stiff and unposeable, so it's really appreciated that SOTA went in the opposite direction. He does feature the usual joints in the same places, but certain parts were specially sculpted to allow a wider-than-normal range of movement. This is most noticeable with his hip joints. Gen's hips have a much much much much higher cut than any of the other figures currently out, and because of that tiny improvement, boy, can he kick high!

Compare that upskirt shot of Gen with Adon, and look at the rest of the pics! He does almost 90 degrees on his leg lifts! It's really something new for SOTA. That's right! You could say that Gen's got balls and he's not afraid to use em! :-p

Perhaps the justification is that Gen's robe covers the "ugly" ball joint, but hey, I'm the kind of guy who'd gladly have it ugly if it gives my figures so much more range of movement. I mean, most of my Marvel Legends look like that anyway.

And for those who do like to find all kinds of neat little things like sculpted detail in uncanny places, lift that skirt and look. They went the extra mile and added texture to the inside! They didn't have to, since it's literally a place where the sun don't shine (much), but they did. I'll say it again: SOTA's really stepping up on the plate and bringing their stuff up to the next level.

If there is one thing that spoils Gen (and I'm being anal here), it's that his tiny feet can't support his weight very well. I mean, while I'd really like for him to stand perched on one leg, as he tends to do in official artwork, not every figure can achieve that. Figures like Adon and Ryu have little problems because of their big feet. Gen has tiny girly feet, and there's no way that he'll be able to. I know. I spent a whole hour trying. But more than that, my Gen figure tends to buckle at the knees, so he has some problems with bent-knee poses. He stands fine straight, but if I want him in a half-squat, I need to use the bottom of his robe to help support the figure. Kinda like a quadru-pod.

Like Adon, Gen isn't an A-list character that fans will snatch up fast. But he's another very strong ACTION figure (stress on Action!). Don't pass him by just because you're not sure you like him. Buy one and take him out to play. He's very worth the cash.

And for you guys who have always wanted a kick-ass, super-articulated kung fu figure, what are you waiting for??

Gen will be available in 5 colours. One regular, and 4 variants based on his palette swaps in the Alpha game.

Purple Gen - Regular mass retail version, packed 2 per case.

Blue Gen - Exclusive to various online retailers.

Red Gen - Exclusive to various online retailers.

Tan Gen - Exclusive to various online retailers.

Black Gen (see main page) - Exclusive to Japan, & SOTA's website


Variant pics courtesy of SOTA toys.

Coming up next: The individual reviews! Click on the links to read em!

Adon
Gen
Guile
Sakura
Balrog


Back to Street Fighter Round 3!


Got a question or feedback? Think I suck at this? Do let me know... -Dare


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All images, format, content, and design are copyright © 1996-2005 Jason Geyer unless otherwise noted. No part of these pages may be reproduced without express written consent of Jason Geyer. Licensed character names and images are copyright © their respective companies. But hey, ask me; you just never know what I'll say.

 

All text and commentary are the opinions of the authors solely, and not to be attributed to any other parties.
All images, format, content, and design are copyright © 1999-2008 D. ”Julius Marx” Pickett unless otherwise noted. No part of these pages may be reproduced without express written consent of D. Pickett. Licensed character names and images are copyright © their respective companies. But hey, ask me; you just never know what I'll say. - Logo Design by Matt Cauley. Web Design by Jason Geyer.