Saturday, April 28, 2012

Playmobil Figures Series 2 and 3: Randomization and Customization

The Playmobil Figures (actually called Fi?ures) series 2 is out in stores now. I managed to pick up a few packages at my local Five Below for about $3.00 each. 

These continue with a similar feel of iconic character types as the Lego mini figure series does, but at the same time they really branch out on their own... into some seriously bizarre territory.

Click through the jump for a deeper look at what Playmobil is up to. I have images of the figures I received, the other crazy/awesome/strange Series 2 figures, the upcoming Series 3 figures, and some ups and downs of Playmobil customization. 

Playmobil has really been stepping it up over the past few years. The figures have always been high quality, but now they are really starting to get interesting. 

Series 2 was a big leap from Series 1. First of all, there is a woman wearing nothing but a towel. Then there is some sort of Battle of the Planets character. There is also a bootleg Darth Vader and Elvis Presley.

Here are all of the figures in Series 2.

And here is an early image of Series 3 (as well as a close up of another upcoming Battle of the Planets bizarro world character)

What's interesting about the second series is that they are really pushing the customization, which I don't remember from the first time around. The instructions show you how to use the parts of many different figures to make your own unique character. It's a very cool concept and seems very natural… BUT…

…have you ever assembled a Playmobil figure? It's not that easy, and it's also not that fun. You need to get the arms in place and hold them carefully while connecting the torso to the legs… but wait, is there a belt? You need to remove that torso again to get the belt on right. And the jacket? Take off that belt and torso, add the jacket, then the belt, but make sure you don't let go of the arms.

Eventually it'll all snap together. Not so bad when you are doing it once, but a lot of work when you are just tinkering around with placement ideas. 

Here are the figures I received:

He didn't come with his feather/plume on his hat, but he did come with a second hook-handed arm. Weird QC issue.

Double sided head! I don't remember seeing a Playmobil figure with a double sided head

 So I took Playmobil's advice made my own figure:

I think Playmobil knows that it's tough to customize these figures, because they have a really useful tool on their site called the "Online Configurator". There you can choose most of the parts (head, body, legs), by simply clicking on a few arrows. Once you have the configuration you want, you can print it out or simply make the figure shown.

And finally... if you're really into customization.. I found a few cool custom figures online.

Playmo91's Clockwork Playmo

Mike Graham's Zombie Art Project
Soviet Infiltrator by Daniel Yu
Banned Playmo-Bible figures by Father Markus Bomhard


  1. That series 3 lady with the huge green collar is INSANE. I must have that. I would like to see a movie about that character. Holy shit.