Undertale Little Buddies Series 1

Undertale Little Buddies Series 1Undertale is a PC game much loved in my house. My oldest loves the characters, their snappy dialogue, and the universe they inhabit. I love that the game has just a whiff of Ultima IV‘s morality system (you have to decide between “pacifist” and “genocide” approaches to the game, or you can remain neutral, and the game’s characters will treat you according to that choice and the reputation that arises from it). I love the innovative combat system that deftly straddles the fence between turn-based and real-time combat. And yeah, I kinda love the characters too, just because my kid loves them. And we both love the music from the game. When I learned from a friend that Arizona-based Fangamer had a series of Undertale character figurines on the market…well, it was an expensive discovery, but totally worth it. Pretty simple transaction, really: I fill Fangamer with the contents of my Paypal account, and they fill me with Undertale characters and, presumably, determination. Continue reading

Power-Up Arcade Light Switch

Power-Up Arcade Light SwitchNeed to feel a little more arcadey in your home game room? The Power-Up Arcade Light Switch has you covered; it’s a simple swap-out with the existing cover plate on a single-switch light fixture, and definitely helps you get your game face on.

The switch comes with a pair of elongated screws (designed to replace the smaller screws already holding your standard-issue light switch cover plate in place, and to account for the greater “depth” needed to attach the much thicker Power-Up switch to that fixture), and the switch itself. It’s easy to install – even if it’s the first time you’ve ever replaced a light switch cover plate, there’s not much here that’s really challenging. Continue reading

DotGraphic Video Game Stage Figures

Hands down one of the coolest merchandising tributes to classic video games I’ve ever seen have been in a couple of series of “stage figures” released onto the Japanese toy market under the Dot Graphics banner. The extensive series of scenes from Super Mario Bros. depict almost every major event in that game, complete with moveable parts, while a similar (but sadly smaller) series of mini-dioramas depict events from classic 70s and 80s Namco arcade games. To say that both of these selections are merely cool is to not even come close to doing them justice. Continue reading

Namco Mini-Diorama Figurines (2004)

Namco Mini-Diorama FigurinesYou may or may not have noticed that here in the summer of 2005, theLogBook.com has been featuring a lot of games and other items by Namco, the Japanese video game maker who gained worldwide fame with games like Pac-Man, Galaga, Dig Dug and many more. Namco, formerly the Nakamura Manufacturing Company, celebrates its 50th year of operation in 2005, so it seems only fitting. Another one of the items released just in time for that anniversary is this nifty set of colorful figurines commemorating some of the company’s games. Released only in Japan, the figurines may not represent what western fans of classic games consider to be well-known, high-profile titles, but even with the small dioramas depicting scenes from lesser-known games, the design and craftsmanship of these toys are impressive. Continue reading

Tron 20th Anniversary Kubricks (2002)

An amazing blast of Tron nostalgia from Japan, these “Kubrick” playsets – a popular variety of novelty toys that resemble nothing so much as Lego men on steroids – offer the first miniature models of any Tron vehicles other than the light cycles. And that said, the light cycles kick butt too.

Each playset comes in a massive box adorned with authentic Tron artwork (right down to attributing the figures to being actual ENCOM products), and a fold-up lid held in place by velcro. When opened, the lid offers a window view of the items in that individual set. Continue reading

Dragon’s Lair 3-D (2002)

Dragon's Lair Singe action figure19 years ago, a video game arrived in the arcades which was supposed to rewrite the history books for video gaming. And in some unexpected ways, Dragon’s Lair did just that. But at the time, all we knew was that it was an insanely cool game using a laserdisc to run specific sequences of gorgeous Don Bluth (The Secret Of NIMH, Xanadu) animation. Which sequences it ran depended on your actions – more often than not it turned out to be the death of your alter-ego, dim-witted knight Dirk The Daring.

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Tron 20th Anniversary Toys (2002)

In late 2001, after years of it being a budget video title with a strong cult following, Tron was suddenly embraced by Disney as if it were the next big thing; a new special edition DVD was prepared, a long-overdue soundtrack CD was released, and quietly, behind the scenes, Japanese toy manufacturer Neca picked up the license to reproduce the cool toys that were originally produced by Tomy in 1982. Continue reading

Q*Bert

Q*Bert figures - photo copyright 2000 Earl Green / theLogBook.comThe year was 1983. The Star Wars franchise was winding down, and the Pac-Man craze had mostly subsided. What was a toy company like Kenner to do? The next best thing to Pac-Man at this point was to hop onto a multicolored flying disc with Q*Bert.

The D. Gottlieb Co. video game was an almost instant hit because of its unique game play and an extremely marketable cast of characters. CBS rushed a Q*Bert cartoon onto the air, and Q*Bert merchandise began to hit the store shelves. Continue reading

Tron Action Figures (1982)

Tron action figures - photo copyright 2006 
Earl Green / theLogBook.comHow do you merchandise a movie with such abstract imagery as Disney’s 1982 computerphile favorite Tron? It’s not easy, but Tomy figured it out. Rather than the traditional paint job, Tomy opted to mold the Tron figures in translucent plastic, painting on only the “circuitry” details of each character’s computer-world uniform. No characters from the movie’s real-world scenes were ever made. Continue reading