The Soul of Chogokin line is the premiere brand for high-quality giant robot figures. With the recent release of the Soul of Chogokin Voltron, as well as the upcoming Soul of Chogokin Megazord from Power Rangers, even more eyes are on it to bring out fan favorites and nostalgic mecha. I'd love to see even more robots get the star treatment, so here’s Part 1 of my list of robots that deserve to be Soul of Chogokin figures:
King J-Der (King of Braves Gaogaigar)
When Guy, the pilot of the lion-chested Gaogaigar, finds himself at death’s door, a mysterious spaceship appears from the depths of the Earth and transforms into the imposing King J-Der. Although it defeats the monsters that have Gaogaigar at their mercy, King J-Der’s pilot, Soldat J, is neither friend nor foe—instead, he’s a rogue force on a vital mission.
King J-Der Forms
Ask any Gaogaigar fan about King J-Der and you’ll hear lavish praise for this behemoth that dwarfs even Gaogaigar itself in size. Curiously, however, King J-Der hardly receives any merchandise. It might just be that its design has been too difficult for most toy makers, but this is exactly the kind of complexity that the Soul of Chogokin line is known for. I’m sure people of all ages will enjoy shouting, “MEGA FUUUUSION!” as they connect King J-Der’s head to its body.
Godannar Twin Drive (Shinkon Gattai Godannar!!)
When veteran pilot Gou finds out that his fiancée Anna has a knack for giant robots herself, the two become a force to be reckoned with. Their two units symbolically come together to form Godannar Twin Drive, a marriage of god and soul.
Godannar Pilots Gou and Anna
Godannar!! is actually one of my favorite anime ever because of how it explores the idea of romance between giant robot pilots. With its massive head flame and close-range fighting style, Godannar is perfect for the level of detail and articulation that characterizes the Soul of Chogokin line.
The challenge of making Godannar into a combining figure is that it changes color once it’s formed. The old Studio Half Eye figure uses reversible plates, but I’d love to see how the Soul of Chogokin designer overcomes this hurdle.
Slave Beast Demon (Combattler V)
When Campbellian commander Garuda is distraught over his inability to defeat Combattler V, his faithful subordinate Miia takes it upon herself to get the job done. For the sake of her beloved Garuda, Miia pilots Slave Beast Demon, a fearsome giant mechanical centaur. Using it, she pushes Combattler V to the brink of destruction.
Villainous Soul of Chogokin entries is exceedingly rare. Garada K7 and Doublas M2 from Mazinger Z, as well as Black Ox from Tetsujin 28, are the only antagonists in the line. When thinking about memorable super robot enemies, Slave Beast Demon stood out in a major way. Not only is Miia’s story beautifully tragic, having a centaur Soul of Chogokin would be fantastic!
Raijin-Oh (Zettai Muteki Raijin-Oh)
A group of elementary school kids comes in contact with an alien entity fighting for justice. With its power, they gain the ability to call upon three robots that can come together to form Raijin-Oh. With a wide array of attacks, notably the God Thunder Crash, Raijin-Oh defends the Earth from the Jaaku Empire.
The first robot in the Eldran Series, the franchise can be considered a cousin of sorts to the Brave Series. It would be more than fitting for Eldran to make its way into Soul of Chogokin, paving the way for future entries as well.
Gipsy Danger MK II (Pacific Rim)
When the Kaiju return to threaten the Earth, humanity’s remaining forces call upon an old veteran. Though unwilling at first, Raleigh Becket reunites with his old “Jaeger” robot, Gipsy Danger, and fights alongside his new partner Mako Mori.
Gipsy Danger Pilots Raleigh and Mako
The Soul of Chogokin line has traditionally been concerned mainly with robots from Japanese anime, but there is a precedent of sorts for Gipsy Danger. Leopardon comes from the Japanese live action Spider-Man show, while both Voltron and the Megazord were clearly made with American audiences in mind. Maybe it’s time for a Soul of Chogokin figure for a robot whose origins come from outside of Japan? Given the international success of Pacific Rim, this would be a surefire hit.
Check out the next article to see the other five entries! There might just be a surprise or two in there.