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Review of Guritz, Mordor Orc Lieutenant
Lord of the Rings sixth scale action figure

Asmus Toys
Date Published:
Written By:
Overall Average Rating: 3 out of 4

Guritz Lord of the Rings action figure by Asmus

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Introduction

When it comes to Lord of the Rings and the Hobbit, it seems like the merchandise has always struggled. That's no more evident than with the sixth scale figures, produced by several companies but never really taking off.

That's not due to a lack of trying though, and two newer players are taking another crack at it. Asmus Toys has already produced several figures, and tonight I'm looking at their latest release - Guritz. ACI Toys also has the license and several announcements, but have not yet released their first production figure of the Nazgul.

With all this LOTR love in sixth scale, you might be fearing for your wallet.  Guritz will run you around $140, but that's quite a bit lower than the now standard $220 for a high end collectible figure. Let's hope Asmus can maintain that sort of price point moving forward.

Guritz is shipping now, and next on their list is Gandalf the White, along with a Nazgul and his horse.

Click on the image below for a Life Size version
Guritz Lord of the Rings action figure by Asmus

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Packaging - ***
This is about as basic as you can get with a sixth scale package these days, short of a plain white mailer. The simple design is attractive though, and it fulfills the two most important qualities - it keeps everything inside safe, and it is completely collector friendly. No need to damage the packaging in any way when removing the figure or accessories, and he can always return to his plastic prison without fuss.

Guritz Lord of the Rings action figure by Asmus

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Sculpting - ***1/2
Guritz has a very distinctive look, thanks to a rather nasty gash through his face, held together by metal staples, and a unique helm.  Guritz is a shorter Orc, and I think he has a bit of an issue with his height. To compensate, he's added a human skull, complete with it's own helm, to the top of his head. 

They've matched this diminutive size pretty well, and Guritz only makes it up to the usual 12" with the added height of the second skull. I wish the detailing and sharpness on this attached skull was a little better, but the overall look is quite impressive.

The work on his own head is excellent, with a terrific skin texture and life-like eyes. There's also a very nice, sharp, distinct edge between his head and the cap, important in this scale to give a more realistic appearance. They've added in hair as well, just enough to look good but not get crazy. It flows down in back under the helmet, and really adds to the overall appearance. 

Guritz Lord of the Rings action figure by Asmus

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Paint - ***1/2
The overall paint work is high quality stuff, especially at this price point.

I particularly like the work on the face and eyes, where it's rivaling some of the better work in the industry. As with the sculpt, the paint work on the attached skull is a little too "Halloween decoration", but the combined effect is still very, very good.

It's also worth noting that the weathering and coloring on the armor is quite realistic, adding to the impression that it's hammered iron.

Guritz Lord of the Rings action figure by Asmus

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Articulation - ***
This is the same basic sixth scale body we've seen from Asmus in the past. The number and design of the joints is good - you can get some nice, flowing, natural poses - but it has the same continuing issues as well.

The joints are loose, especially the elbows and knees. While you can get good poses, keeping them can be a bit of a trick. The heavy accessories are also difficult for him to handle, limiting some of the battle poses.

Guritz Lord of the Rings action figure by Asmus

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Accessories - ***
He's a little light, but considering the lower price point and the amount of sculpting necessary for the outfit, it's not surprising.

He does come with an extra set of gripping hands to go along with the open, relaxed hands he comes wearing. The hands swap easily enough, but don't fall off unexpectedly.

I don't remember of Guritz was the standard bearer in the film, but he does come with a Mordor flag. This drapes over a pole/hanger assembly, and the top piece appears to be metal. It looks great, and can double as a weapon if necessary.

The second pole attaches to a sickle-like blade, sort of a glaive if you will, and this blade is also metal. That makes it a bit hard for the figure to hold it in some poses - those floppy arms have trouble with the weight - but it certainly looks terrific.

There's also the basic black Asmus display stand, which you may find more need for due to the loose joints. A couple more weapons would have been nice, but at the lower price point, I can live.

Guritz Lord of the Rings action figure by Asmus

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Outfit - ***
Guritz is heavily armored,  with the thick, solid, rough looking plates you'd expect with an Orc. Nothing pretty or shiny here, it's all business, and a brutal business at that.

The sculpting is good, with a rough forged look to the various pieces. Edges aren't sharp, but slightly soft and rounded, which fits with the type of material and style being mimicked.

They did use some very long straps on some of the pieces, especially the greaves and vambraces. I'm tempted to cut them shorter...but I hate damaging my figures.

If I were grading merely on the armor, this score would jump another half star. However, there's those damn pajamas.

I complained about this same issue with Gothmog as well. Underneath the armor he's wearing red pants and a red shirt, somewhat loose fitting. I don't mind the fit - anything tight would look weird as well - but the clean condition along with the bright color clashes with the character's origins and personality. The color needs to be much darker, and a little dirt and grime would certainly help. This guy would get laughed out of Mordor.

Fun Factor - ***
Although the body is a bit floppy, you can still get some fun poses out of him. And if there's any tweens out there who are huge fans of the films, they'll love the creepy nastiness of the sculpt and design.

Guritz Lord of the Rings action figure by Asmus

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Value - ***
The 'high end' sixth scale market has risen from $100 - $150 to the $200 - $250 range over just the last couple years.  Here you're getting a very solid figure, with a great sculpt and paint work, back in the lower price range. You can't argue with that, although I still do at times.

Things to Watch Out For -
The long staff is for the flag bearer, while the shorter staff is designed for the blade. Each has a specific end cut to fit, but it is possible to force the wrong one in place. Pay attention and use the right staff for each.

Overall - ***
I don't know about you, but this idea that $220 or even $250 is the new norm for a high end sixth scale figure is getting a bit more than I can take. Thankfully, Asmus is keeping their prices in a range that's reasonable, particularly for secondary characters like Guritz.

In fact, the head sculpt, paint, armor and accessories are all well about the quality level that you'd expect considering the lower price. There are only two issues holding this figure back from another half to full star overall - the loose body and the red clothes.

Neither of these issues should add tremendous cost to their figures. The body is fine in terms of articulation and engineering, but it needs to be produced in such a way that the joints are tighter. This was a problem for Sideshow as well for quite a long time, but it is correctable and it shouldn't cause the unit cost to jump.

Likewise, the costume just needs to be darker. The bright red really hurts what is otherwise a terrific looking outfit. Sure, it'd be even better with some weathering and damage, but I'd be happy with just a darker red.

The upcoming releases, like Gandalf, do rise in price a bit. He's advertised for around $170 at most retailers, but he does have quite a few accessories, including an Orc head that can be used by customizers to create another figure. If Asmus can keep these sub $180, maintain the quality of sculpt and paint, and tighten up the bodies, they'll have a winner.

Score Recap (out of ****):
Packaging - ***
Sculpting - ***1/2
Paint - ***1/2
Articulation - ***
Accessories - ***
Outfit - ***
Fun Factor - ***
Value - ***
Overall - ***

Where to Buy 
Online options include these site sponsors:

- is at $130.

- or you can search ebay for a deal.

Related Links -
Other reviews include:

- Asmus has produced Gothmog and the Morgul Lord, and you should check out their plans for the line at their website.

- Other sixth scale figures include these by Sideshow - Gandalf, Sam and FrodoAragorn, Faramir, Boromir and Legolas.

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Guritz Lord of the Rings action figure by Asmus

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This product was purchased for the review by the reviewer. Photos and text by Michael Crawford.

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