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How to buy from Kotobukiya Japan
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What is Kotobukiya?
Kotobukiya produces figurines and plastic model kits based on many anime and manga series and they are well-known to many collectors worldwide. They also produce figures based on western licenses such as DC, Marvel, and movie franchises like Star Wars. Besides plastic models, Kotobukiya also produces other anime and manga goods such as keychains, plushies, and more. They are also popular for their original in-house products called the Frame Arms series.
Why buy on the Japanese website of Kotobukiya?
Kotobukiya releases many new products every month. However, the international selection is limited, with many items quickly selling out in the Kotobukiya US, Singaporean, and European Shops. Due to licensing, a majority of Kotobukiya’s products, including re-releases, are Japan-exclusive and therefore unavailable overseas. The Japanese website also allows for pre-orders, which is the only guaranteed way to secure the product for yourself, because due to the nature of the industry, many of these items are made based on the number of preorders received and any extra products will quickly sell out. Pre-orders will often include Special Bonus Items that are only available through the shop and are limited in supply. Unfortunately, Kotobukiya Japan doesn't ship overseas so you need a proxy buying service to get your Japan-exclusive items. Thousands of people living outside Japan use Japan Rabbit as their proxy shopping service to buy from Japanese online stores like Kotobukiya.
How to buy from Kotobukiya Japan?
Japan Rabbit is here to help make buying from Kotobukiya Japan an easy experience.
Step 1: Go to Kotobukiya Japanese website
Kotobukiya’s homepage can be accessed at kotobukiya.co.jp. For those who cannot read Japanese, the language of the website can be changed to English by using the drop-down menu in the top right corner. But just a warning, browsing in English will limit the types of products you actually see and you won’t be able to access the online shop!
Step 2: Browse the website
The website layout is simple and easy to understand. The search bar is located at the top center of the screen and next to it are four buttons depicting “Shop Info”, “Products”, “Event & Campaign”, and “Blog & SNS”.
- The “Shop Info” button will redirect you to a page with more details about the three physical stores.
- The “Products” button will show you a page with products in their release order either by arrival or by month. To switch the views, you can click the buttons on the right side of the page right above pictures of the products to switch between “新着順で並び替え” for order by arrival or “発売月順で並び替え” for arrival by month.
- The “Event & Campaign” button takes you to a page that shows all the events and campaigns that Kotobukiya has. The first set of two buttons allows you to sort in order of arrival or by date of the events. The second set of buttons allows you to sort by thumbnail view or list view. The third button allows you to hide events that have already ended by checking the box. Under these buttons are seven tabs where you can filter through the events by category. In order from left to right, they are “All”, “Domestic Exhibition Event”, “Overseas Exhibition Event”, “Shop Event”, “Shop Campaign”, “Shop Info”, and “Other”.
- The “Blog & SNS” button leads to a page with lists of different blogs and official Twitter accounts for Kotobukiya about product lines.
To the left of the page, the “Search by title” button will take you to a page where you can see in alphabetical order which anime or manga Kotobukiya has products for. Below those, there are 5 tabs that are named:
- “Figure”: all of Kotobukiya’s figures.
- “Plastic Model”: all of Kotobukiya’s plastic model kits.
- “International Character”: Characters that are not of Japanese origin are shown in this tab such as DC’s Supergirl, or Newt Scamander from Harry Potter Series’ Fantastic Beasts.
- “Male Lineup”: All of Kotobukiya’s products of male characters.
- “Goods”: Everything from limited edition kitchenware to rubber straps and more.
Once something has caught your eye, simply click on the photo to go to its product page. There, you will find more information about the figure with the specification box to the left of the main promotion picture. From top to bottom, it describes the series, product line, the month of release, scale, product size, price, product specification, parts (for plastic model kits), material, and the sculptor. Under the main promotional image, there will be a series of images of the figure or plastic model kit from different angles or poses. Below is a box for the Product Description that gives more information about the character.
Step 3: Tell us what to buy
Copy the URL of the page of the product you want us to help you buy by highlighting the link in the address bar of that page. Ctrl+C or right-click with your mouse and click copy. Then go to the Japan Rabbit app and paste the URL into the field named “Product web page”. Click the “Next” button and it will bring you to the next step where you can tell us about the product you want. Copy the item name on the product page and then paste it into the box on Japan Rabbit’s website that is labeled “product name”. The product name for Kotobukiya’s goods is found in the grey box above the promotional image of the product. Then tell us how many to buy and how much the product is. Once you have filled out all the boxes, add the item to your cart in Japan Rabbit and repeat the steps as needed for anything else you wanted to buy. If you are ready, hit the checkout button and let us do the rest.
Step 4: Consolidate, repack, and ship your package
Once we receive your package, Japan Rabbit will notify you. If you want your package to be repacked, just let us know! Or if we deem that the packaging is not up to standards for international shipping, we will let you know. If you ordered anything else from us, we can consolidate several parcels into one package. Once you decide, you can choose from a list of different international shipping methods for the best way and price to ship it from us to you!
What can you buy on Kotobukiya?
Kotobukiya has many famous product series. Looking through all of them might seem overwhelming at first, but we have compiled a guide to help.
Meaning young beautiful girls, the Bishoujo statue series is based on Shunya Yamashita’s illustrations. Yamashita draws video game, comic, and movie characters in the Japanese Bishoujo style. All of these figures are in 1/7 scale. Notably, the Bishoujo series has taken an interesting turn by producing gender-bent figures of popular horror movie icons such as Hellraiser’s Pinhead, Chucky, Halloween’s Michael Myers, and more!
Meaning good-looking man, the Ikemen series is the male counterpart to the Bishoujo series. Kotobukiya takes characters from western pop culture and turns them into what the Japanese version of them would look like stylistically. They are 1/7 scale just like the Bishoujo series so they are guaranteed to look great in a collection together.
The popular science fiction anime Zoids first started off as a model-kit toy line created by Tomy. These giant robots have designs based on animals such as big cats, dinosaurs, insects, and even mythological creatures. Today, Kotobukiya also makes plastic model kits for Zoids.
ARTFX, ARTFX-J, and ARTFX+ statues
Kotobukiya’s ARTFX series is their original concept of figures with dynamic poses that they created to impress the world. Most characters in the ARTFX series are taken from western pop culture, such as the DC, Marvel, and Star Wars universes. The ARTFX figures are larger in scale, usually around 1/6 scale. Compared to the ARTFX series, the figures for the ARTFX+ series are smaller in scale, around 1/10, and are more affordable in price. They are also dynamically posed and more characters are available in the ARTFX+ series. The figures in this series also come with interchangeable and bonus parts, which is why there is a “+” in the name. The ARTFX-J series are of characters from Japanese anime, manga, and games such as Pokemon or My Hero Academia as opposed to the western pop culture characters of the ARTFX and ARTFX+ series. This series has a mixture of characters from beloved older licenses and the recent series today. The figures in this series are 1/8 in scale and just as dynamic as the other two series.
Frame Arms Girl figures
The Frame Arms Girl plastic model kits are growing in popularity. Diverging from the standard Frame Arms kits, the Frame Arms Girl kits are mecha, but feature girls that are frames themselves that can mount armor, weapons, and accessories such as thruster jets, wings, and interchangeable weapons like swords, cannons, and missiles. Many of them come with different face plates so you can change their expression as well. Most of the Frame Arms Girls are original characters created specifically for this series, but they do have a collaboration that features popular virtual singer Hatsune Miku as a plastic model kit.
Kotobukiya’s Cu-Poche series are cute, poseable, chibi figures of popular characters from anime and manga such as Yu-Gi-Oh, Puella Magi Madoka Magica, and the Fate franchise. They are around 3-5” in height and have 15 points of articulation. Cu-Poche comes with interchangeable parts and accessories so the possibilities are endless.
Where are the stores in Japan?
For anyone who is traveling in Japan, there are three Kotobukiya stores in Japan. One in Osaka, Nipponbashi, and two in Tokyo, Tachikawa, and Akihabara. The shop in Akihabara is the flagship store and contains many special sections. The official Monster Hunter Shop is found on the first floor of this store. They have sections for series such as Star Wars and Dragon Quest as well as brands like Nintendo, Square Enix, and Studio Ghibli. The official Tales of Series Shop is located on the second floor of the building and there are many event exclusives available for purchase. Many idol series such as Love Live! and THE [email protected] goods can be found on this floor as well. Popular anime series like My Hero Academia, Sailor Moon, and Cardcaptor Sakura has a section on this floor as well. For more information about the flagship store, you can see the Akihabara store floor guide.