I had been sitting around the house thinking of important things like, “I’m really hungry” and “I wish I had Five Guys.” This eventually actually led me to Five Guys where I had a wonderful Cheeseburger with Ketchup, Mayo, Hot Sauce, Lettuce, and grilled onions. After shoving the burger down my throat I enjoyed a large bag of fries and washed it all down with a Coke. At this point I understood how the Boomer from Left 4 Dead felt, just always on the verge of blowing up. I was one with the Boomer.
This reminded me that my NECA Boomer was in the mail and it got me really excited. I then started thinking about the new toys NECA had coming out from their Valve license … a Smoker, a new Portal Gun, Gordon Freeman, all exciting stuff. But then I wanted to think a little deeper and figure out what had not been announced yet. So I came up with a nice list of my most wanted Valve toys and props.
- Left 4 Dead – The Tank Player Select Deluxe 7″ Scale Figure
Sure the survivors are the ones you play as, but in a first person shooter it’s the things you see that really stick with you. One thing you can always count on in Left 4 Dead is that when things are looking bad the Tank will show up and make it a lot worse, probably even wipe out your group. I have a thing for hulking large intimidating toys, a lot of them end up being my favorite toys ever because they make nice backdrops and just stick out. Some examples in my collection are ML6 Juggernaut and Pitt. With the amount of articulation they got into the Boomer (you don’t see that much articulation work normally put into a fat character), I know they can make a “figure of the year” out of the Tank. It would be so great for Pitt and the Tank to face off.
- Portal 2 – P-Body and Atlas Player Select 7″ Scale Figures
Again, this might seem like an odd choice considering Chell is the main character in both the Portal games. However I think that Chell would make a really boring action figure and the only reason I would buy her would be to take her portal gun and give it to He-Man or something. On the other hand P-Body and Atlas have a really cool aesthetic, being robots and all not only would they attract Portal fans but those people that buy robots too. Plus a robot fits into any collection, throw them into Marvel Legends, DC Universe, Masters of the Universe … anywhere you like you can retcon in a reason for a robot to be there. They would need to come with removable Portal guns though, because I will be equipping most my toys with them at some point or another.
- DOTA 2 – Heroes
I feel like something different could be done with the heroes from DOTA 2. The success of Lego mini-figures has me thinking a blind boxed 2″ random hero grab bag would be fun. I guess this would really depend on how much main stream support for this game there really is. It’s definitely popular as it has a very active community, but can the designs translate to small plastic and could they possibly appeal to more people than just DOTA 2’s fan? I could see something like this happening, however maybe NECA wouldn’t want to take that risk when the Player Select brand is so strong. I also think blind boxing will capture the frustration you feel when a guy is riding your ass because you got ganked for an entire game.
Those are my big three from Valve.
You may be curious as to why I didn’t include anything from TF2? I basically believe if they have the Heavy and Demo-Man already made they will do what they can to get the rest. So I think the rest of that cast is a lock as long as they hold the license. Is there one I’d particularly like to see sooner than later? Probably the Engineer, but all the designs are really good so I’d be happy with whatever they put out.
Would I want something from Counterstrike? Not really, there is no personality behind the characters you play as in the game. It would be very similar to the McFarlane military line they did way back. There would probably be strong sculpts and paints, but no real attachment to it. I think either a big personality or some type of individualism is important to making a successful toy and there is nothing in Counterstrike that could fill that need.
And as far as prop replicas after all the Portal Guns are made? I want to see a life-sized Wheatley with lights and voice. That would be my ultimate dream. Second would be a life sized Turret replica, again with lights and voice. I still think the Portal series is the greatest thing Valve has ever put out, and that is saying a lot considering the high quality of their other licenses.
I’m excited to see what NECA has in store for us at SDCC, Randy has been pretty vocal about being stoked for the reveals. It’s great that a company that loves this license so much ended up with it. I am very excited to see what the future actually holds, maybe some of my wants will come true!