Love him or hate him, there’s a number of good Duke toys that have come out over the years. While I don’t think many are quite as fun as the original Duke, this Battle Corps version does provide quite a bit, especially for a Battle Corps figure.
This Duke is almost strange for being such an especially well reasoned and realistic looking figure. At a time when GI Joe was mainly remembered for ridiculous colors and goofy gimmicks, this figure slipped out amazingly removed of those elements. His uniform and sculpt are so grounded looking I can easily understand why someone might use him as an army-builder, as I’ve been so tempted in the past.
The sculpt here is full of detail while remaining mostly simplistic, which I think works in it’s favor. The figure’s helmet is sculpted on, unlike the previous three Dukes. I think the figure gains the merit of a better head sculpt from that, although it’s a bit sad to lose that playability from a removable helmet.
His accessories were well chosen for this figure too, even if they’re generic parts. He includes a pump-action shotgun, MP5-K, machete, riffle, and a boring missile launcher. As the parts are cast in black plastic, he has a rather nice and realistic set of parts compared to many of his contemporaries. I feel like this figure was heavily influenced by the Gulf War and this area is especially so.
I think if there’s a downside to this one, his paint apps are pretty thin. Overall, the figure just looks a little flat and isn’t painted many colors. It especially hurts in areas where the sculpted details like the goggles on his helmet stand out, but lack any paint. It’s nothing major though, as the rest of the paint is decent enough.
All in all, this is definitely one of my favorite 90‘s figures, and one of the better Duke’s Hasbro made.