When this set was released there were already four other sets of Japanese infantry in this scale. The question therefore is whether this set was really necessary at all, and whether it would cover some different aspect of the Japanese Army or simply repeat what had already been done by others.
The 12 poses include a good range of figures. One of the men is performing the Banzai, and the officer differs from those in the competing sets although is not necessarily a better pose. The man about to throw a grenade holds it in a strange way, but apart from that the poses are good but nothing that hasn't been seen before in Japanese infantry.
All of the men are wearing the type 98 uniform, with the tropical shirt that was the normal uniform for the hot southern islands that were at the centre of the Pacific War. The uniform is correctly sculpted in every way, and most wear the field cap with sun curtain, but the two machine-gunners and the prone figure wear standard helmets with camouflage netting (helmets were less popular because they were hot, uncomfortable and offered fairly little protection). Equipment too is accurate, and is in fact the best of the sets in that respect. Some figures lack certain items, such as the rear reserve ammunition pouch, but the supply position for much of the war meant men often went without some items, so the look is authentic.
The infantrymen are armed with rifles, and both a 7.7mm Type 99 light machine gun and model 92 heavy machine are included, though the latter is not being fed with ammunition. The officer is wielding his sword, which is probably the popular shin-gunto type, and a pistol, which he holds in his left hand. All these are well done and correctly detailed, and, as we have come to expect from Revell, the same goes for the figures themselves. The detail is good, the clothing believable and the faces certainly have an eastern look to them. Apart from the heavy machine gun, which has separate gunner, gun and base, there is no assembly here, and on our example there was no flash or unwanted plastic.
Perhaps this set does not bring much that is new to the range of Japanese soldiers, but it is always nice to see such good quality figures being made, whatever the subject. These are as nice as any Japanese yet made, and a worthy addition to the quite extensive range of World War II figures from Revell.