Formation Arts Figures
The Formation Arts Figures are officially-licensed sets of collectible figures, like the static arts and play arts figures, made for the Kingdom Hearts game series, and are part of Square Enix's larger Formation Arts collectible figurines series. As of 2013, six official Kingdom Hearts sets have been released: three for the original series, and three for the second, Kingdom Hearts II series.
All three original volumes are composed of six figures; three heroes and three villains. The Kingdom Hearts II volumes are composed of five figures each, and lack the chess icons of the previous series. All figures are made of heavy plastic and feature a character or characters with important props, locations, or symbols that represent them.
The original series figures have a black or white symbol on the back opposite the Mickey head or Heartless symbol on the front of the base. This marks which chess piece the figure corresponds to so the figures can be used on a Chess board. However, there are repeats of the same piece throughout the series so you can use whatever ones you want based on liking or which ones you receive.
Two styles of the Formation arts figures have been released. The original style comes packaged in a small, solid box. The figure inside is randomized, so the buyer cannot see which character they are purchasing, and will not know until the box is opened. Some characters can be guessed at based on the weight of the box; Hades from the first volume can usually be selected without opening the box, for example, as packages with his figure were slightly heavier. In addition, at least a few of each figure were also released in rare monotone version, colored to resemble a pewter-like metal. Once opened, the figurines have to be assembled in the style of a gashapon toy according to the directions contained within. These figures were primarily released in Japan, although a few make their way to other countries through collectors and conventions.
The second version comes packaged in a blister pack, so the character being chosen is readily seen; only the heroes from each set are available. In addition, instead of coming in pieces as the original releases did, the blister figures are made from one molded, painted piece of plastic. They are generally seen as lower in quality, but on the plus side are cheaper and readily available in more places, including many American shops and bookstore chains such as Borders.
The figures from Volume 1 were made available in Japan in April 2005. They are, in numerical order:
The figures from Volume 2 were first made available in Japan in April 2006. A "re-run", or re-release, was done in August 2008. They are, in numerical order:
The Volume 3 figures were released in Japan in August 2008. It is the first series to be based on Kingdom Hearts II, but is part of the original series. In numerical order, they are:
Kingdom Hearts II Series
The KHII Volume 1 figures were released in Japan in Fall 2010. It is the first volume to be branded with the Kingdom Hearts II label, and does not continue the numbering of the previous series. They are:
The KHII Volume 2 figures were released in Japan in Winter 2012, and have yet to be released elsewhere. They are:
The KHII Volume 3 figures were released in Japan on June 28, 2013. They are colored blue unlike the silver of the previous two sets, and are based on the various words of Kingdom Hearts II. They are: