HG Series

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HG Series logo.jpg
HG logo original.jpg

The HG Series (HG (エイチジー)シリーズ,   Eichijī Shirīzu), standing for "High Grade," is a line of two-inch tall collectible gashapon figures produced by Bandai. Numerous waves of Godzilla and Gamera figures have been released in the line, typically to coincide with the newest film in their respective franchise. The figures are primarily sold in vending machines and all require at least minor assembly. Derivative toylines have also been produced, such as HG D+ and HG D+ EX—standing for "High Grade Diorama"—and Gashapon HGX (ガシャポンHGX (クロス),   Gashapon Eichijī Kurosu)—standing for "High Grade Crossover."

HG Series

Godzilla

Bandai HG Set 1.jpg

The first wave of Godzilla figures was released in 1994 in conjunction with Godzilla vs. SpaceGodzilla.[1] It includes the following figures:

Gamera

Bandai HG Gamera Set 1.jpg

The first wave of Gamera figures was released in 1995 to commemorate Gamera's 30th anniversary and the release of that year's film, Gamera the Guardian of the Universe.[2] The figures included in this set are:

Godzilla 2

Bandai HG Set 2.jpg

The second wave of Godzilla figures was released in 1995 to coincide with Godzilla vs. Destoroyah.[3] It includes:

Gamera 2

Bandai HG Gamera Set 2.jpg

The second wave of Gamera figures was released in 1996 to coincide with the release of Gamera 2: Attack of Legion.[4] The figures included in this set are:

Godzilla 3

Bandai HG Set 3.jpg

The third wave of Godzilla figures was released in 1997 to coincide with Rebirth of Mothra 2.[5] It includes:

Godzilla 4

Bandai HG Set 4.jpg

The fourth wave of Godzilla figures was released in 1998 to coincide with TriStar Pictures' GODZILLA.[6] Figures included in this wave are:

Godzilla 5

Bandai HG Set 5.jpg

The fifth wave of Godzilla figures was released in 1998 to commemorate the release of Rebirth of Mothra 3.[7] It includes the following figures:

Gashapon EX Godzilla

Bandai HG EX.jpg

In 1998, Bandai re-released the first wave of Godzilla figures with additional "Gashapon EX" branding. These figures featured slightly different paint jobs and were sold exclusively at 7-Eleven stores instead of in vending machines.[8] Just as with the first wave, the figures included are:

Gamera 3

Bandai HG Gamera Set 3.jpg

The third wave of Gamera figures was released in 1999 in conjunction with the release of Gamera 3: Revenge of Iris.[9] The figures included in this set are:

Godzilla 6

Bandai HG Set 6.jpg

In 1999, in anticipation of Godzilla 2000: Millennium, Bandai released a sixth wave of Godzilla figures.[10] There is also a clear version of this set, which can be seen on the display and insert sheets, that was given away to 100 winners of a mail-in raffle. The set includes:

Godzilla 7

Bandai HG Set 7.jpg

The seventh wave of Godzilla figures was released in 2000 in conjunction with Godzilla vs. Megaguirus.[11] It includes the following figures:

Godzilla 8

Bandai HG Set 8.jpg

The eighth wave of Godzilla figures was released in 2001 to coincide with the release of Godzilla, Mothra and King Ghidorah: Giant Monsters All-Out Attack.[12] It includes the four monsters featured in the film, plus two classic monsters:

Eiji Tsuburaya Selection

HG Tsuburaya Selection.jpg

The Eiji Tsuburaya Selection set was released in 2001 to commemorate the 100th birthday of Eiji Tsuburaya. This set includes three Godzilla kaiju and three Ultra Q kaiju:

Godzilla 9

Bandai HG Set 9.jpg

The ninth wave of Godzilla figures was released in 2002 to coincide with the release of Godzilla Against Mechagodzilla.[13] It includes:

Godzilla 10

Bandai HG Set 10.jpg

The 10th wave of Godzilla figures was released in 2003 along with the film Godzilla: Tokyo SOS. All six of the figures in this wave are new molds, but all except Ebirah are based on monsters that have already received HG Series figures.[14] The figures in this wave are:

Godzilla 11

Bandai HG Set 11.jpg

In 2004, to celebrate both the release of Godzilla Final Wars and Godzilla's 50th anniversary, Bandai released a 11th wave of Godzilla figures.[15] All of the figures in this wave are of monsters featured in Godzilla Final Wars, including:

Godzilla 2014

HG Godzilla 2014.jpg

In 2014, Bandai released the first new wave of Godzilla figures since 2004, in commemoration of Legendary Pictures' Godzilla. From this point onward, the waves abandoned their previous numbering. It features four figures:

  • Godzilla
  • Godzilla (Ver. Spit Fire)
  • MUTO (male)
  • MUTO (female)

Shin Godzilla

Bandai HG Shin Godzilla Set.jpg

To coincide with the upcoming film Shin Godzilla, Bandai released a new wave of Godzilla figures in August 2016. The wave includes:

Shin Godzilla 2

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Following the release of Shin Godzilla, Bandai announced a second wave of HG Series figures based on the film. It includes all four forms of Shin Godzilla:

  • Godzilla 2016 (1st Form)
  • Godzilla 2016 (2nd Form)
  • Godzilla 2016 (3rd Form)
  • Godzilla 2016 (4th Form) [includes interchangeable mouth parts to simulate Godzilla firing his atomic breath]

Shin Godzilla Climax

Shin Godzilla high grade set 2 variants.JPG

In 2017, Bandai released another wave of Shin Godzilla figures, all of which were repaints of the figures from the previous wave. Figures in this wave are:

  • Godzilla 2016 2nd Form Model Color Ver.
  • Godzilla 2016 4th Form Model Color Ver. (includes interchangeable mouth parts to simulate Godzilla firing his atomic breath)
  • Godzilla 2016 4th Form Frozen Ver.
  • Godzilla 2016 4th Form Daytime Ver. (includes interchangeable mouth parts to simulate Godzilla firing his atomic breath)

Godzilla 2017

Bandai HG Godzilla 2017 set IM.JPG

Bandai announced a wave of HG Series figures for release in the third week of January 2018 to commemorate GODZILLA: Planet of the Monsters. Figures in this wave are:

Gamera One

HG Gamera One.jpg

A new wave of Gamera figures were released in April 2021 as part of the then-ongoing commemoration of the franchise's 55th anniversary. The wave consisted of four figures from the 1995 film Gamera the Guardian of the Universe. The poses of the flight mode figures are based on the film's Japanese theatrical release poster. The figures include:

Shochiku x Toei Kaiju Festival

Daikaijyu shouchiku toei 05.png

A "Shochiku x Toei Kaiju Festival" wave was rolled out in the second week of February 2022 as a promotion for the companies' film What to Do with the Dead Kaiju? It includes:

Gamera Two

HG Gamera Two final.png

A second wave of Gamera figures, this time based on the 1996 film Gamera 2: Attack of Legion, was released in August 2022. It includes:

Toho Kaiju

HG Series Toho Kaiju.png

A wave of "Toho Kaiju" HG Series figures was announced in September 2023 and released in the third week of December. It includes:

Gamera 2023

HG Series Gamera Rebirth.png

A set of figures based on the 2023 anime series GAMERA -Rebirth- was announced in November 2023 and released in the third week of April 2024. It includes:

Godzilla x Kong: The New Empire

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In June of 2024, a set of figures based on the movie Godzilla x Kong: The New Empire were revealed. It will include:


HG D+

Godzilla 01

HG D+ Godzilla 01 final.jpg

In the fourth week of May 2019, to accompany the release of Godzilla: King of the Monsters, Bandai released the first wave of Godzilla figures in the HG D+ line. These figures come in round shells bearing the texture of Godzilla's skin that can be opened into miniature dioramas, complete with effect parts. The wave includes the following four figures:

Godzilla 02

HG D+ Godzilla 02 final.jpg

Bandai released the second wave of HG D+ Godzilla figures in November 2019. Figures in this wave are:

Godzilla 03

HG D+ Godzilla 03 final.jpg

Bandai released the third wave of HG D+ Godzilla figures in April 2020. The Godzilla 2016 (2nd Form) and (4th Form) are reissues of the sculpts from the Shin Godzilla 2 set. Figures in this wave are:

Godzilla 04

HG D+ Godzilla 04 final.jpg

Bandai released the fourth wave of HG D+ Godzilla figures in October 2020. Unlike older sets, the base of the dioramas are purple rather than black. Figures in this wave are:

Godzilla 05

HG D+ Godzilla 05 final.png

Bandai released the fifth wave of HG D+ Godzilla figures in January 2021. Figures in this wave are:

Godzilla 06

HG D+ Godzilla 06 final.png

Bandai announced the first two figures in the sixth wave of HG D+ Godzilla figures in November 2020, and the next two in February 2021. The set was released in August 2021 to commemorate the earlier release of Godzilla vs. Kong. Figures in this wave are:

Godzilla 07

HG D+ Godzilla 07 final.png

Bandai initially announced the first two figures in the seventh wave of HG D+ Godzilla figures in November 2020 as part of the sixth wave. However, in April 2021, it was revealed that Mechagodzilla and AquaMothra would be included in this set, along with Godzilla Ultima. The set was released in October 2021, and includes:

Miscellaneous figures

HG D+ EX Mothra & Rodan & Mothra Larva Set

HG D+ EX 01.jpg

Premium Bandai released a set of Godzilla "HG D+ EX" figures in November 2019. Unlike the previous D+ Godzilla 01 wave, these figures come as a box set with only half of the capsule shell, which is used as a base for the dioramas. The set includes three figures:

HG D+ EX Biollante (Plant Beast Form)

HG D+ EX Biollante.jpg

Premium Bandai announced a second Godzilla HG D+ EX figure in August 2020, to be released March 2021. Unlike the previous EX set, this is a single extra large gashapon with a light-up function:

Gashapon HGX Godzilla

HGX Godzilla.jpg

In May of 2022, Bandai announced a wave of Godzilla figures in its Gashapon HGX line. Unlike past waves, HGX consists of seven different sets, each containing a figure and pieces of another figure, all of which are from the movie Godzilla vs. Destoroyah. If all seven sets are collected, the pieces can be assembled into a figure of Destoroyah's Perfect Form. A lighting unit which is sold separately can be combined with the Godzilla 1995 figure and used to make its body glow. The sets are as follows:

  • Godzilla 1995 and Destoroyah (horn)
  • Super X3 and Destoroyah (right wing and right arm)
  • MBT-MB92 and Destoroyah (head and upper body)
  • CLT-95 and Destoroyah (left wing and left arm)
  • MBAW-93 and Destoroyah (left and right legs)
  • Destoroyah (Juvenile) and Destoroyah (lower body)
  • Destoroyah (Aggregate) and Destoroyah (tail)

Bootlegs

Bootleg markings (top), actual Bandai markings (bottom)

Starting in the summer of 2000, bootlegs of the Wave 4 Godzilla figures began appearing on the internet, and remain common on sites such as eBay and Amazon to this day. Though at first glance it may be difficult to spot the differences between the real figures and the bootlegs, there are some notable differences. The bootleg figures are generally smaller and feature less precise paint jobs. They also lack the markings on their tails which list the copyright date and "BANDAI CHINA," instead simply reading "CHINA."[16] Bootlegs of the Burning Godzilla specifically will often feature alternate paint jobs, recoloring the burning patches with different colors. Below are pictures comparing the actual figures and their bootlegs.

Trivia

References

This is a list of references for HG Series. These citations are used to identify the reliable sources on which this article is based. These references appear inside articles in the form of superscript numbers, which look like this: [1]

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TriStar
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