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Saturday, May 1, 2021

How Collecting Anime Figures Works – An Inside Look Of The Business And Collecting


My hero academia and Dragonball anime figures collection

Anime keeps on gaining worldwide popularity every single day. Likewise, figures depicting characters from the hottest anime series have become a prevalent form of collecting. 

Both the offline and digital markets offer a wide array of options. With the involvement of bootlegs and substandard merch, it gets harder to have a good find. Thus, there is a lot to understand when you go shopping for an Anime Figure. 

Otaku Fantasy virtually met with The Grandline USA to learn more about how the anime figure market works. They are an anime shop in the Los Angeles County of California, extending a range of anime merchandise to the eager fandom. 

Though The Grandline USA is not the only shop out there, they are the ones who heeded the call to feed our curiosity. We're sharing everything we've learned through this blog.

How To Search For The Right Anime Figures

When searching for an anime figure, there are two primary things you must know:

  1. The types of figures available in the market
  2. How sellers secure the anime figures and sell them to the public

As with every collectible, the market is targeted in a certain way, so figures retain their rarity and value, and we will explain how that works. 

Dedicated Otakus need constant update of everything anime, and if you consider yourself as one, having an anime figure collection serves as proof of that.

If you're looking into growing your anime stuff or if you have bought a few already but would like to be sure whether you're doing it right or not, read on, Senpai!

Types of Anime Figures – The Big Three

When you check eBay or Amazon for anime figures, some terms could intimidate or confuse you, especially if you're a newbie at this. 

Anime figure descriptions like scale, Figma, gachapon, and so many more will make your shopping more challenging. 

So you won't be surprised that the anime statue you received is not what you expected it to be; learn about these anime figure semantics is a must before adding them to the cart.

The "big three" anime figures on the market are:

  • Prize Figures
  • Scale Figures
  • Figma Figures

Many people may have seen these types posted around social media pages but are not aware of these terms. Moreover, buyers are 100% innocent about their differences.

We will explain below how they differ from each other and their price range. Let's also reveal the fad right now in the world of anime figures.

Prize Figures

Prize Figures are the most common figures you will see on the market. They earned the name prize figures since they are the usual prize rewards given at events in Japan. 

These figures generally stand 5-9 inches tall and are not exact scale replicas of an Anime Figure. They are made of PVC plastic and have high levels of detail in both the painting of the figure and the figure's design. 

Although these are on the cheaper end of anime figures (they generally run for around USD 30), they are remarkably high quality. Manufacturers go through several prototypes to make sure they meet standards and accurately represent their Anime counterparts. 

Prize Figures sometimes come with accessories as well. The Naruto Prize Figure has a removable Rasengan he can hold. If your favorite character wields a weapon, chances are, a prize figure will include that as an accessory. 

The Grandline USA's current lineup of Prize Figures includes Demon Slayer, One Piece, Re: Zero, Dragon Ball, and many more! 

Scale Figures

As you can guess, Scale Figures are an adequately scaled figure to the Anime character it is depicting. 

They are also made of PVC plastic, and manufacturers spend more time making sure they have better detail than the Prize Figures. 

The points where the pieces of the figure attached are much smoother, and the painting on them is unbelievably detailed. Since they are correctly scaled and have a higher level of detail, they usually run more expensive than Prize Figures. 

And of course, the larger the scale, the more expensive they become. Some Scale Figures can have articulated parts to change the pose, but they are usually solid PVC. 

You can pre-order the beautiful Giyu Tomioka 1:8 Scale Figure from Demon Slayer at The Grandline USA. Gorgeous figures like this get sold out quickly, so you better keep an eye on them!

Figma Figures

Figmas are vastly different compared to Prize or Scale Figures. They are made of several types of plastics and are highly articulated, so you can pose the figure any way you can think of. 

Many Figmas come with interchangeable parts and accessories as well. Because they come with parts and accessories, they usually run slightly more expensive than Prize Figures but do not get as expensive Scale Figures. 

There are so many kinds of figures that are becoming more popular on the market. Nendoroid Figures are gaining a lot of popularity recently. These are small-scale, highly articulated Kawaii-styled figures.

Action Vinyls are popular as well. These are small, poseable, and accessorized figures that usually come as a blind box, so you have the chance of buying a rare one! And, of course, there is the Funko Pops! 

How Collecting Anime Figures Works

Now that you know what types of figures you can buy, it is time to get to the meat and potatoes. 

Manufacturers of anime figures want to make sure the market stays stable, so your sculptures retain their value. There are many ways they can do this:

One, they only produce a limited amount of anime figures. 

If there are so many of the exact figures around, like a seller with 500 pieces of the same scale figure, they're probably fake.

Each figure only has a certain number of units made. It ensures that there are only a specific number of that figure in circulation. Apart from retaining its value, the values will undoubtedly increase in the future.

This is why some early MHA Nendoroid releases sold for USD 55 are now listed by their former owners in Amazon for USD 300.

When you see a figure on the market, there are only so few of them that you can purchase for a while. Miss the chance, and they'll be gone.

Occasionally, a producer will do a rerun on a figure. However, they mark them as reruns, so you know you are not getting the first run of that anime figure. These generally take longer to increase in value, but they still do, and therefore, are still worth collecting.

Manufacturers also create hype for the next run of figures, so the current figures sell, and they can move on to the following line of figures. They can go through several runs for a specific character within a year. Once the new run is released, their hope is the previous one has sold, and people will buy the next big thing. 

If you are serious about collecting the hottest and the newest Anime figures, you need to be vigilant about the latest run. 

Retail stores do their best to bring in the newest runs as soon as they are available. It keeps them up-to-date with the market and allows them to mark down prices of their older anime inventory so you can get the best prices for any figure, new and old. 

If you are serious about starting an Anime figure collection, or you need to add on to the fantastic collection you have created, be sure to check out what these shops have to offer right now.

If you see a figure on the market you love, the best time to get it is that precise moment, especially if it's from a top-rated or very missed show like Attack on Titan and Hunter x Hunter.

Stock across all stores will be empty, and the value of these figures will start to go up. 

Your only two choices are:

  • Hope that you can find a retail store that carries it at a marked price (because the new runs will theoretically be available) or;
  • Try your luck on a third-party selling list such as eBay. 

However, on these sites, prices can take a massive hike because they are now collector’s items with an increased value. After all, they are so hard to find. 

Collecting Anime Figures is a vigilant task, and you need to be equipped with all this information before you go shopping for a new figure. Now, you know what kind of figure to look for and how the process of collecting them works. 

That was like a virtual trip to an anime figure factory! Now that we know a bit more about this hobby, let's talk about The Grandline USA team and its offer.

Set Sail At The Grandline USA: A Quick Review

We took the opportunity to review the store, and we'll give an unbiased insight.

We want to make sure you get only the best and newest figures on the market, and we realize there are several places you can go for Anime figures, but why go through them? 


Big retail stores do not offer all this information to anyone. Now, we learned how to differentiate these anime figures and what it looks like on the inside. This transparency makes them trustworthy. You'll know you're in good hands when dealing with them.

The Grandline USA's website is fun, fast, secure, and easy to use. Our team at Otaku Fantasy had a great time looking through their beefed-up collection. Our mouths watered as we check their available figures one by one.

The descriptions are in-depth that buyers would know EXACTLY what they will get. This is far different than random stores that provide generic info about the product, which are probably copied and pasted from other marketplaces. 

The company offers flat rate shipping, ensuring each figure went through utmost care, handling, and packaging — the way every collection item has to be treated.

They use something that seems like excessive packaging, but you would know that it's there for protection

If issues arise, you may contact their friendly customer care service people at

Promo for my fellow Otaku readers

The Grandline USA currently offers exclusive promotions for all of us reading it right now!

If you spend USD 29.99 or more, they will throw in a FREE surprise gift!

If you feel like indulging yourself and spending USD 50.00 or more, they will ship your order to you for free! 

Create an account before checking out, and you qualify for a 15% OFF code — enter the code “NEWGRAND”

By making an account, you can also contact them through your account quickly, and when they have the newest products in stock, they can notify you immediately. Hence, you are always ahead of the game before everyone else!

When you shop for all your Anime Merch, you want to make sure you choose a place that knows about the business, the products, and Anime, and The Grandline USA is a place that meets all of this. 

We checked all their pages, and it seemed like they've dumped all their otaku knowledge into it.

Go check their website now at

If you are a native to Los Angeles County, be sure to Google them for their address and visit their Brick & Mortar. With this, you can physically see everything they have to offer! 

I hope our team can go there, too, so we can meet in person!

Check the below for their social media:


Pinterest/Instagram/Twitter - @thegrandlineusa  

So, Set Sail & Unleash the Weeb at The Grandline USA!


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