Several different villains have opposed the ninja during NINJAGO: Masters of Spinjitzu, the latest of whom are the ruthless Oni. These characters take inspiration from evil creatures of Japanese folklore and I think they appear intimidating in minifigure form!
853866 Oni Villains Battle Pack contains three wonderful Oni Demons, exhibiting their varied manifestations in the animated television series. These menacing minifigures are exclusively available here and the pack is accordingly appealing, although its price of £11.99 in the UK or $12.99 in the US seems rather expensive given the relatively limited number of new elements.
Three frightening Oni Demons are included. The first presumably takes inspiration from the Omega, who commands the Oni, based upon his impressive horns and shoulder armour that correspond with the animated series. A black Oni mask with vivid purple eyes and elongated teeth forms the face and looks tremendous. However, an additional face is found underneath and you can also raise the mask.
Both pieces are decorated with matching facial markings and light bluish grey designs adorn the torso too. Unfortunately, they do not continue on the legs and the Omega's cloak is not included but he does wear a scabbard carrying two swords instead. In addition, the white necklace features some NINJAGO letters which look superb, creating a sense of mysticism around these villains.
The other Oni incorporate identical torso and head components, although their differing armour and height distinguishes them. The shorter character wears a bandana and dual sheaths while the taller minifigure shares its shoulder armour with Mr. E from the Sons of Garmadon subtheme, drawing an interesting connection between these villains and those who sought the Oni Masks.
Lower ranking Oni Demons seemingly feature shorter horns which are represented by black ears. This element was originally created for Black Panther from Marvel Super Heroes but it looks wonderful here as well. An army of Oni appears during the animated series so greater differentiation would have been welcome but swapping parts should create a reasonable selection of unique figures.
Furthermore, each villains is equipped with a different weapon, compromising a staff, a standard battle axe and an unusual bladed implement that might represent a bearded axe. They include black tassels and some trans-purple pieces which loosely resemble the glowing orbs shown in the television series.
853866 Oni Villains Battle Pack is currently the only available set based upon season ten of NINJAGO: Masters of Spinjitzu so it seems likely to prove popular. I like the Oni Demons but their design does not match the impressive standard of other recent villains such as the Dragon Hunters in my opinion. Even so, they do appear rather intimidating and stand out within the pantheon of adversaries for the ninja.
Unfortunately, the price of £11.99 or $12.99 feels expensive for a pack that only includes three unique minifigure elements, particularly when compared with previous minifigure sets. However, these packs are often discounted and it may be worth purchasing multiple copies to build an army at that juncture, depending upon the price!
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