Over the years I’ve been asked where I buy my anime figures. I figured (no pun intended) I’d make this short post explaining some of the best places to buy anime figures and some shops you should probably avoid.
I want to start with the websites that sell used figures like Craigslist and eBay. I honestly believe these should be avoided unless you have a well trained eye. The overwhelming majority of figures on eBay are Chinese knock offs. If you do buy used, only purchase from sellers who provide actual pictures of their product and are willing to communicate with you. If you find out the product is not authentic after they said it was, you will be able to get your money back through eBay’s and PayPal’s user agreements.
Unfortunately, figures often have limited runs which means you might be forced to buy used. Popular figure might be available for a long time on Amazon, though the prices might be higher than other figure shops. Compared to dedicated figure websites, Amazon has a very small selection.
The first online figure shop I would really recommend is called Tokyo Otaku Mode; however, the address is OtakuMode.com. This site is sure to have the latest popular figures, and they even have some exclusive figures from time to time! TOM happens to be the website where I purchased the exclusive Edward Elric Limited Edition figure.
When you purchase items from Tokyo Otaku Mode, you will earn a small refund called TOM points. These points will be held in your account for six months, which can be applied to future orders. When you buy another item, the deadline to use your TOM Points will be moved another six months down the road. The website often has huge sales with larger TOM Point refunds. I’ve even purchased figures using TOM Points alone on two occasions! Tokyo Otaku Mode uses American Dollars for their prices, and they have a warehouse to ship from Japan and the United States, which means short wait times!
The second online figure shop I recommend is called Ami Ami. This shop always has the best and latest anime figures, just like Otaku Mode. Unlike Tokyo Otaku Mode, AmiAmi also features preowned items and 18+ adult items.
When you purchase items from AmiAmi, you will earn a small refund simply called AmiAmi Points. These points will be held in your account for one year after the figure ships. AmiAmi uses Japanese Yen on all their products, but the currency conversion will not occur until the item is released and ready to ship. It seems they only have warehouses in Japan, but I can’t seem to confirm this.
So in conclusion, I recommend AmiAmi and Tokyo Otaku Mode overall. However, there might be times when you have to resort to Amazon or eBay to find the figure you’re looking for. In those cases, look carefully before purchasing!