The premise that mixing one awesome thing with another makes something even more awesome seems fairly self evident, but after James Matson got his hands on the 19990s range of G.I. Joe ‘Street Fighter 2’ figurines, he’s just not so sure…
It’s inevitable that the world of gaming – with all its highly marketable characters, worlds and stories – should breed an accompanying world of merchandise. For every popular video game, there are figurines, collector cards and yes, even Monopoly variations thrust out into a world of eager consumers. It’s only natural for collectors of retro games such as us to get bitten by the bug of sourcing and hoarding these ancillary goodies.
Imagine our glee then, when we discovered that one of the most well known figurine brands in the Universe – G.I. Joe – had done a crossover set of Street Fighter characters when Street Fighter 2 was at a popularity peak in the 90s. We managed to get our hands on a reasonable smattering of these G.I Joe Street Fighter characters, some of which can be seen below.
Surely only absolute bliss and win gets spawned when you mix G.I Joe with the epitome of fighting games? Not exactly. As you may have noticed, a few of these models look, well, a bit retarded. This is due to there being only a handful of templates for G.I Joe figurines in terms of body shape, height and facial structure, with most of the detail for different sets being added by way of accessories or paints. This leaves some of the characters recognizable (Blanka, E. Honda, M. Bison) while some look disturbingly like a drag queen with a military fetish (Ken).
Some look okay, but modern ‘Play Arts’ style toys make these G.I. Joe figures look like they were fashioned by a small, armless child.
Using only his pinky toes.
In the dark.
Under the influence of grade A hallucinogens.
Each character comes with a set of weapons and accessories that have little to no correlation to any story lines from the video game franchise (unless you know something about a thread of narrative where M. Bison wields a Bazooka or Ken takes down some bad guys with an AK-47 that we missed?) but this just adds to the overall quirkiness, charm and in our opinion collect-ability of the G.I Joe Street Fighter sets. We even managed to track down a still boxed Chun Li to get a peek at the box style and art.
The back of the packet has some great Bio information about the character, as well as in-game screenshots (not sure on the platform though, SNES maybe?) and tips on special moves.
Of course, anything G.I Joe wouldn’t be complete without weapon adorned vehicles to transport your death wielding plastic dudes all over the lounge-room floor, so why not take your shiny Crimson Cruiser out for a spin?
If M. Bison driving and Vega hanging off the side is anything to go by, this is the transport of choice for Street Fighter bosses. The box contains the Cruiser itself, a special edition M. Bison figure, Puzzle book and some G.I Joe ‘Combat Pay’ dollars which if memory serves us were redeemable for items from a special G.I Joe catalog of toys and accessories. Sadly, the dollars have an expiry of March 1993, so we’re not going on a spending spree any time soon.