Saturday, 11 October 2014

McFarlane Halo 4 Series 1 Cortana Action Figure Review

Today I have for you another action figure review. This time, it's the McFarlane Halo 4 series 1 Cortana... Allons-y!


Just in case anyone is unaware of both Halo and Cortana, allow me to quickly explain them. Halo is a military science fiction first-person shooter...basically, it's somewhat a cross between Saving Private Ryan and Star Trek.

Within the game, you take on the role of Master Chief (incidentally, I have a review of a Master Chief action figure coming soon!), taking on enemy forces known as the Covenant and the Flood.

Throughout the games, Master Chief rarely has a companion for long, that is, with the exception of Cortana.

Cortana is a artificially intelligent being, created from the cloned brain of the creator of the Spartan project (the project that created Master Chief). Throughout the games she learns, adapts and grows, she acts as a companion to Master Chief and, helps him complete his missions.

Now you know a little about the character, lets crack on with the review...

The Sculpt

As you've probably noticed from the pictures, Cortana shares a stylist with Jennifer Lawrence and Rebecca Romijn's Marvel character Mystique. The nude design of the character means the sculpt is relatively simple, with no clothing or accessories having been sculpted onto the figure. The simple nature of the character design could quite easily have shown up any obvious flaws in the sculpting. Luckily, there are no obvious flaws, well...with the slight exception of her face. Don't get me wrong, the face sculpt is ok, what I don't like about it is her expression. Cortana has quite an emotional storyline in Halo 4, this gives her various emotional states they could have chosen from. Instead of this however, they have, either intentionally or by accident, made her look bored.

The Paintwork

The paintwork on the figure is good...and bad. Whilst McFarlane have done a great job recreating the patterns that cover Cortana's body, it's this application that causes issues. 

Cortana is a holographic projection, meaning she is created from light and appears translucent. The figure, however, because of the paint application, is pretty much opaque. Even if you modify the base, adding lights (previous versions came with an illuminated base as standard), you can't easily make her appear holographic, which is a shame.


This is the first Cortana figure McFarlane made that featured articulation, which is nice...kind of.

The packaging boasts a whopping 10 points of articulation (which is odd, she has 12!), unfortunately, most of these are pointless. Due to the sculpt, and the type of joints used, her hip, ab, shoulder, bicep and neck joints are almost useless. Unless you have them in their standard position, it mishapes Cortana's body, giving the illusion that she possesses abnormal growths.

Her elbow and wrist joins are the only joints you can really use without ruining the aesthetics of the figure. They also give you a little posing possibility, especially when used with her alternate hand featuring the holographic panel.


Considering this is such a basic figure, McFarlane have done their best to make up for it by giving you a few accessories.

Firstly, you get a Halo Micro Ops Master Chief. I have to be honest, until getting this I had no idea what it was. Having looked into it, it seems it's basically Halo's equivalent to toy soldiers. Despite it's small stature, the detailing and paintwork is remarkably well done.

Also with Cortana, you get two different right hands. You get a standard hand that is in a relaxed, open pose and you get one featuring a holographic panel. The holographic panel features a diagram of Master Chief, the UNSC (United Nations Space Command) logo as well as, buttons and read-outs of various things. The figure looks great when posed with the panel.

The last accessory you get is a base. As I mentioned before, unlike the bases you get with previous Cortanas, this one doesn't light up. The base features pegs for Cortana's feet, which is good...she stands abouts as well as a drunk, on a ship, during a storm. It features some nice detailing and is painted very nicely with silver, grey and metallic teal.


Overall, despite it's few flaws, I quite like this figure. McFarlane have, yet again, created quite an accurate representation of a popular figure from an extremely popular game series.

Should you pick up this figure...sure, it's a great figure and, it would look great in any Halo collection. One thing I will say though is, bear in mind, due to the nature of the character, articulation is lacking. If you are someone who wants many, many points of articulation, this figure probably isn't for you.

So, there you have it, my review of the McFarlane Halo 4 Series 1 Cortana action figure...

Do you have this figure? What do you think of it? Leave me your thoughts below?

Thanks for stopping by, I do hope you enjoyed yourself.

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