“Just look at that dog… no… You named him ‘D-Dog,’ but it’s obvious … ANYONE can see that’s a wolf!” A pretty on the nose quote by Dr. Huey Emmerich during his questioning and exile from Mother Base. Though a specific example, Huey is pointing out the absolute absurdity of the entire Diamond Dogs operation being run by Big Boss and the people within it. More importantly he’s also correct, D-Dog is not actually a dog.
I got enough Metal Gear Solid figures in the last couple days to put together a theme week! Well I suppose a theme “week” being my current schedule of two to three reviews per week. All three figures that came in this weekend were ones I’d been wanting to mess around with for quite some time, so this is all very exciting. I’ve mentioned a few times that I’m not a big fan of Play Arts Kai. I appreciate that they have the most comprehensive Metal Gear Solid action figure catalog currently out there. However, between their scale and price I generally stay away unless there is a decent discount.
D-Dog is something special though. A dog in a sneaking suit? Sign me up. I would have actually loved to get Snake’s other buddy, Quiet, but unfortunately she’s long sold out and goes for well over $500 on the secondary market. I guess soft boobs have selling power! Realistically I think her release prior to the game coming out played out very similar to Rey in “The Force Awakens.” She just ended up selling through before the game hit, and once people realized how bad ass she really was, all of the figures were gone. However, unlike Hasbro I doubt Play Arts plans to rerelease her. So we get to feel the phantom pains of our missing Quiet toys.
Our four-legged friend comes packed in the typical Play Arts Kai window box with the Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain labeling. He includes a stand that needs to be put together, two alternate heads, a shock baton with a sheath, and a knife with a sheath. When you reach a specific bond level with D-Dog in the game you gain the ability to customize his look. The alternate heads are able to capture most of D-Dogs looks by including a head with an eye-patch, a head with a clear face guard visor, and a head with no scars and both eyes. There is some additional customization in the heads because all three lower jaws are removable and can be swapped between heads. There is one with a tongue out, tongue in, and one made specifically to hold the weapons.
You only get one set of ears, so don’t forget to place them on the head currently on D-Dog’s body!
Depending on if you want to go lethal or non-lethal, both his stun baton and knife sheath into D-Dog’s left side. He has a decent amount of articulation, but unfortunately can not replicate pulling the weapon out of its sheath. Otherwise he has pretty good range in all four of his legs. You can get him to sit or stand and he looks great both ways. The joints took me a little bit of time to get used to. I think part of that was not being used to posing an animal with four legs, I just don’t see it all that often so it doesn’t feel natural.
The details in D-Dog’s suit are very cool. I love the little touches like the labels on the suit that say things like, “High Performance Dog Gear, GREAT HOWL series,” and “DIAMOND DOGS High Performance Dog Gear.” It just gives me great joy to think of Ocelot picking out the most advanced tactical dog gear for D-Dog.
While I love D-Dog to death I do have a giant problem with his price. Domestically you are looking at paying over $100 for him. I imported him for around $85, and this was the absolute cheapest I could find. I love the figure, but I don’t see a hundred dollar value here. Play Arts Kai figures are expensive, but D-Dog is half the size of a regular figure release so he really shouldn’t cost the same or more. The MSRP is a shame because I can only imagine it priced out quite a few fans that would have loved to have him.
D-Dog is out there now and can be had with the rest of the PAK Phantom Pain line. I’d keep an eye on Amazon and see if he eventually hits a price you feel comfortable with. I had to have him, high price be damned he’s worth it to me. If he’s worth it to you at least know that he’s also a fabulous figure and you shouldn’t be disappointed.