Ken appeared in the first Street Fighter game as a virtual clone of Ryu. It is a trait that has followed him ever since. Learning the same Shotokan techniques from as a child from Gouken, he befriended Ryu. Brash and a fan of fame and glamour fame, after winning the American karate tournaments, he became a movie actor. Ken’s dragon punch taps into his chi and burst into flame when he throws it at an opponent.
Ken looks much like Ryu. The action figure is based on the cartoons’ design. Ken has thick black eyebrows. His shoulder pads should be ripped, like Ryu’s, although many illustrators draw them without tears. Sota has chosen to not tear them either. However, Ken’s pants and kimono should always be clean unlike Ryu’s that are always ripped.
Ken’s body is the same as Ryu’s. They share the same torso, the abdominal, the shoulders, the biceps, the forearms, the thighs, the knees, the feet and the toes. What’s different are the fists and the heads. Ken comes with a pair of those, and another pair of hands where the right one is in a thumb up pose, and the other one’s index points forward. Ken’s alternate head is the one with the long ponytail before he cut it.
The paint job is not as impressive as Ryu’s, not because of paint spills or error, but mostly due to lack of shading. There is some shading on Ken’s skin, but it is way too subtle compared with Ryu’s. The paint on Ken’s gloves is one thick layer of paint with no shading. There’s shading on Ken’s kimono and paints though. A remarkable detail is the different colour for Ken’s nails.
Ken is shorter than Ryu because of his hair, although their proportions are the same. Of course Ken is taller than Chun Li and Cammy. He’s shorter than all other Street Fighter action figures from the first and second waves, such as M. Bison, Blanca, T.Hawk, Sagat and Sodom. Like all of Sota’s Street Fighters, Ken is in scale with the entire line.
Ken is stable. One needs but to find the right angle for his feet and put them in. Don’t twist the soles’ articulations too hard not to break them. As he is not top heavy, his soles offer good balance. He’s one of the easiest figures to pose in an action pose because he is not too heavy, like Sagat and not too light, as Cammy. Unfortunately, Sota doesn’t include peg holes in its figures’ feet to put them on action figure stands.
Ken has 27 articulations at the neck, the shoulders, the biceps, the elbows, the wrists, the palms, the abdominal, the waist, the hips, the thighs, the ankles the soles, the toes and double articulations in the knees. Ken has ball-joint articulations in the neck, the shoulders and the hips. These give Ken a level of motion unparalleled. As Ken’s proportions are in balance, it’s easy to put him in any action pose.
Ken is made of PVC with softer stock for parts of his body, like his kimono and his hair. This plastic is sturdy, but sometimes, dried paint jams the articulations. This is the case with Ken’s soles. As Ken’s waist is hidden inside the kimono, it’s difficult to twist it. The kimono, is a virtual top dressing the figure. Ken’s hair are glued on his head.
Besides the alternate head and the hands, ken comes with a POWER BLAST that fits his right fist. It won’t stay on long though. It’s moulded on his fist. It’s in clear red plastic.
Ken comes in bubble pack that can only be opened with scissors. There’s a comic book picture of him on loose card and a leaflet with images on all other Street Fighter action figures from the first 15th anniversary release and the second. Ken is attached to a clear plastic casing with wires. This type of package is probably less expensive for Sota Toys, although it is not environmentally friendly.
Ken and other Sota Street Fighter action figures cost about $12 in the US and $16 in Canada. Price change depending on the distributor and the quantity, the retailer ordered. Often, retailers give a discount to customers purchasing an entire set of figures.
Ken is the most popular action figure from Sota’s second Street Fighter set. Just like Ryu and Sagat, before him, don’t expect to see him in stores for long. Some record stores sell the figures, but they are mostly available in specialty action figures retailers on the Web or comic book shops. The figures are not frequent overseas. Sota will release alternate ken figures through fan conventions and exclusive retail partners. As many video game fans discover these figures, don’t expect Ken to stay on shelfs for long.