How to Spot a Fake/Bootleg Play Arts Kingdom Hearts 2 Sora Action Figure

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This is the first installment of a new series of blog posts we’ll be doing every now and then called The Fake, Forgeries, and Phonies. Under this series we’ll be posting up fake versions of toys we receive to educate you guys on what to look out for when buying that particular toy. It’s best to at least know that your buying a bootleg instead of being under the impression that it’s real.

First up is Play Arts Kingdom Hearts II Sora action figure. Square Enix Play Arts figures are no strangers to having their products copied by Chinese some manufactures. To the untrained eye, this toy would actually deceive someone for being an actual real Sora Play Arts action figure. For experienced collectors, this might be a walk in the park. Either way, let’s dive into why this figure is as fake as they come.

We are going to start with indicators that won’t require you to necessarily have the figure in your hands to follow along. So if your looking to purchase a Sora toy and you’re a bit skeptical on whether it’s fake or not, you should be able to use these measures to determine just that.

The Box

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A great starting point to determining your Play Arts Kingdom Hearts 2 Sora authenticity status is to look at the box it came in.

Sounds simple enough right? Okay, let’s dig in deeper…

Within the Kingdom Hearts II line that was released, the packaging had the Disney Kingdom Hearts logo on the top left side of the box. On the authentic version, the “II” part of the logo was a blue color – which is pretty similar to the blue shade that’s on the top of the box. If your “II” symbol is a purplish color, most likely your figure is a bootleg.

Another thing, there should be a silver crown above the “M” in the logo, not a random silhouette of Sora.

If the figure didn’t come with a box, no problem. Let’s dive into a few other indicators.

Crown Neck Chain & Keyblade

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A lot of collectors will say if Sora doesn’t have a Mickey Mouse chain on the Keyblade, the figure is fake. While this is a good measure to check the authenticity, it’s not always 100% accurate. As you can see in the picture above(see right pic), the Mickey Mouse chain is attached to the Keyblade of this fake figure.

We’ve noticed a more accurate measure would be Sora’s neck chain. If you’re dealing with a fake figure, you’ll notice there’s a regular chain around the neck(see left pic). On the authentic figures, a crown pendant should be attached to the chain.

Hair Color

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If you’re familiar with the character’s design, you’d know that Sora’s hair is a dark brown color. You can expect the same thing with the real figure. On the fakes, Sora will have a light brown almost blondish hair color. If the figure’s hair is very light…chances are it’s fake. However, keep in mind there are different variables that come into play when judging the figure’s hair color while you’re buying online like: inconsistency from manufacturer, photo quality on a listing, and picture lighting on a listing.

Ab Crunch

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A feature introduced with this figure was the ability for Sora to do an ab crunch. If you look at the picture above, you can see that part of the jacket covers a portion of it up. On the real figure, the jacket isn’t so uneven. It doesn’t overlap to the point where you have to move it out the way to use the feature.

Moving on… The next set of indicators will require you to actually have the figure in your possession. Also, for those collectors who keep your figures boxed up, you might want to take yours out the package to inspect it. Especially, if your suspicious that it might be a bootleg. However, if you don’t have the figure or don’t want to take it out the box, it’s okay, you can still follow along and educate yourself with what to look out for.

Smell

This should actually be an almost dead give away that something’s fishy about your figure. Most action figures come from the manufactures with a natural plastic smell that isn’t too overpowering.

The plastic used on the fake Play Arts figures tend to have a very strong unique odor. The smell was one of the first things we noticed when we took the figure out of it’s box. You can expect a normal plastic smell coming from a real Play Arts figure just like every other toy brand, there’s no exception here.

Quality

a) Paint

Surprisingly, the paint on some of the bootlegs are not as bad as you’d suspect. The colors are almost spot on.

Keyword… Almost…

First, Sora’s skin has a yellowish tint to it. You can expect the skin tone much paler on the real figure. Next, if you’re familiar with the toys released from Square Enix Play Arts series of the Sora character, you might have noticed that they almost always add a bit of brown around his face and on parts of his arms and legs. Look out for this on your figure.

You might not have been aware of this, but it’s pretty noticeable and if your figure has this you’re in good shape.

b) Weight

The weight of the figure might be harder to tell compared to the other things we’ve spoken about thus far, but the more information you have the more you’ll be able to spot the fakes. Compared to the original, the fake figure is much lighter and flimsy feeling.

The real figure isn’t heavy, but the weight difference is pretty noticeable. It will tend to have a more heavier and solid feeling. This indicator might require you to have another Sora figure in your collection or for you to be a bit experienced on how Play Arts action figures feel.

c) Durability

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There’s been some reports from people about the bootleg’s limbs breaking easily, but we haven’t experienced this yet. What we did notice was the figure’s ball jointed head seems like it’s not that stable resting on Sora’s neck. This was a red flag since our figure had just came right out of the package. Older figures that have had their joints bent and moved around a lot can suffer from loose joints, but figures that were just taken out the package shouldn’t. If you bought your figure out-of-package, look out for flimsy limbs as well.

Conclusion

Everything we’ve went over in this post should give you some good footing against the large amount of counterfeit Play Arts Kingdom Heart II Sora figures out there. You may only think the fakes are online, but some bootlegs have been so widely spread that collectors are reporting they’ve picked them up at their local collectible shop! The good news is, as long as you stay educated on what to look out for you’ll always have a one up over the bootleg manufacturers.

Please keep in mind these indicators are based off of our observation and our observations only. Please remember that some of these indicators may vary per Sora figure. If you buy a fake/bootleg it is not our responsibility and only yours to do the proper research that is needed to assess whether the figure is real or not.

  • NANDO

    I just bought a Valor Form Sora for $160 from amazon since I know they are one of the most limited edition figures. But I heard there are no bootlegs for the Valor, Wisdom, and Master Form. Only for the original Sora, Axel, Roxas, and Kairi figures, is this true?

  • http://www.mhtoyshop.com/ MHToyShop

    It’s true that there hasn’t been word of bootlegs for the rarer forms for Sora. But there’s still a chance they could be out there. Just be sure to look out for some of the key indicators like: Is there a crown on the neck chain, do the weapons look suspicious, does the figure feel flimsy, are the colors off etc.

    • NANDO

      Thanks! :D

      • http://www.mhtoyshop.com/ MHToyShop

        No prob!

  • Henry Lopez

    This is good to know