Shogun Warriors Great Mazinger Project

By: Karl Stern (@dragonkingkarl, @wiwcool)

One of my favorite pieces from my collection is a gift from my wife a few years ago.  As a kid in the 1970's the Shogun Warriors were very much on my radar in the mid to late 1970's.  I am no expert in the Shogun Warriors rather complex licensing scheme but all of these toys were originally Japanese properties under a variety of names.  They were licensed in the United States under the general name Shogun Warriors for toys and comic books published by Marvel Comics.  Marvel, at the same time, licensed the Godzilla property for comic books and Godzilla appeared in the Shogun Warriors toy line.  Interestingly enough, Great Mazinger (AKA: Great Mazinga, and in later animated form in the U.S. as Tranzor Z) did not appear in the Marvel Comics Shogun Warriors publication.

Shogun Warriors Great Mazinger Box art

Shogun Warriors Great Mazinger Box art

I had the Godzilla toy when I was a kid (and I have another one now) but I never had Great Mazinger but he was, by far, my most wanted toy from the line.  My wife found one for a very reasonable price on eBay and bought it for me as a gift but it was incomplete so I took to restoring it immediately.  The stickers were actually in very good shape but I did have to replace the knee and belt stickers which was very simple.  There are plenty of retro waist stickers available on eBay but mine was still in excellent shape so I left it alone.

The most noticeable thing missing were most of the missiles.  I think there were still three with the figure I got.  Replacement missiles are also readily available on eBay so I replaced all the missing ones.  There is one leg missile holder still missing on mine on the right leg.

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I was lucky in that my Great Mazinger's left hand rocket launcher was still in perfect condition and works fine.  The springs are still tight and I've seen a lot of these that are inoperable or outright missing.  Again, these are pretty relatively available on eBay.  If you are buying a Great Mazinger for yourself make certain to check the rocket launcher out as it is a pretty complex piece and you may or may not have missiles to work with.

There are also supposed to be two swords which fit down into the toy's leg.  My Mazinger is missing them but they are also pretty available on eBay although there appears to be several different styles of them.  In fact, there are quite a few variations both domestically and internationally of this toy so be sure you learn as much as you can about your specific Mazinger.  I'll be honest, it's not as easy as it sounds.  Even after owning mine for a few years I'm still not 100% certain what year model it is.  

The biggest restoration I need to make to mine involves the brain ship.  That's the tiny plastic ship which docks to the Mazinger's head.  Mine seems significantly different from the ones I've seen pictured leading me to believe it is either the wrong ship or at very least missing a couple pieces of it.

Here is one of the correct ships.  Mine is shaped very differently and is missing the ring around it which seems to secure it to the head.  Also, the blue dome seems molded as one piece to the rest of the ship where mine (pictured below) is missing it all together.

Here is one of the correct ships.  Mine is shaped very differently and is missing the ring around it which seems to secure it to the head.  Also, the blue dome seems molded as one piece to the rest of the ship where mine (pictured below) is missing it all together.

As you see there is a vast difference in my brain ship.  It is missing the blue dome and is shaped very different.  It is either from a different version of Great Mazinga or a different year but they are obviously two different brain ships.  

As you see there is a vast difference in my brain ship.  It is missing the blue dome and is shaped very different.  It is either from a different version of Great Mazinga or a different year but they are obviously two different brain ships.

 

As you can see my brain ship does not dock correctly with the head leaving it loose.  I'm still not certain what is going on here.

As you can see my brain ship does not dock correctly with the head leaving it loose.  I'm still not certain what is going on here.

A front view shows that the ship docks correctly sideways but not front to back.  The paint apps are still great on the head.

A front view shows that the ship docks correctly sideways but not front to back.  The paint apps are still great on the head.

Overall, my restoration Great Mazinga is in excellent shape, missing only a very few pieces with good paint and no broken pieces (other than the brain ship) and missing only the right leg missile holder.  This piece was virtually a holy grail for my collection and even years later after it has grown tremendously the Shogun Warrior Great Mazinger is still one of my personal favorites and a true When It Was Cool conversation piece.

He is a full view of my Great Mazinger from the Shogun Warriors Line.

He is a full view of my Great Mazinger from the Shogun Warriors Line.

Here is Great Mazinger displayed with various other 1970's era pieces including the Godzilla from the same line.

Here is Great Mazinger displayed with various other 1970's era pieces including the Godzilla from the same line.

For more on the line check out the Wikipedia article on the toy line- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shogun_Warriors_(toys)