McFarlane Toys released a JFO Spartan (JFO stands for Joint Fires Observer) as part of their sixth series of figures for the Halo: Reach line. Even though this Spartan was intended as an exclusive to Walgreen’s in the USA, everywhere else he seems to ship with the regular assortment of figures, mine bought from a Sears store in Mexico City.
The JFO armor permutation is available in the Halo: Reach game once the player has reached the rank of Lt. Colonel, although the armor appears in the Armory much early, at the rank of Warrants Officer.
The thing about this particular release is that this figure represents the standard JFO configuration, with no custom armor elements. As such, the only unique element in this Spartan is the helmet, since the torso armor has already been used with other Mjölnir armor permutations and the shoulder pads where used primarily for the HazOp Spartans.
• Barbell jointed neck.
• Pegged hinge shoulders
• Hinged elbows with swivels above and below the joint.
• Hinged wrists with swivels above and below the joint.
• Barbell mounted torso.
• Swivel hips.
• Barbell mounted upper thighs.
• Pegged hinge knees.
• Hinged ankles with swivels above and below the joint.
• Barbell mounted toes.
All of the joints work well, but I think there is some mold degradation going on, as some of the joints feel less tight than in the preceding series, although not to the point that compromises the stability of the figure.
For this JFO McFarlane decided to go with white as the main color, with the undersuit painted in the customary charcoal black hue.
Even though I am not too fond of the way the simulated battle damage looks when applied over white, the end result isn’t as sloppy as it was on the Mk.V[b] Spartan released in a 2-pack from Series 1 nor quite as clean as it was on the Series 2 CQC Spartan, which turn out to be rather nice. The white JFO also sports a visor painted entirely bright silver instead of gold, which is something of a first for these figures.
The other thing that sets this Spartan apart is that he comes with an entirely new weapon, the dreaded Target Designator. In and of itself, the accessory is rather plain and unassuming, looking a lot like a barcode scanner. However, in the game, what it does is paint a target so an orbital artillery barrage can blast it to bits.
The actual piece doesn’t have a lot of deco. In fact, it looks fairly boring with just a red trigger and a few handle sections painted black. It even lacks a peg hole to attach it to the armor when not in use. The only other weapon included is a metallic purple plasma grenade.
In hindsight, I may have bought this figure mostly because of the perceived desirability of a store exclusive even though, as I mentioned, this white JFO has no such category locally. Still, standing on its own merits this figure is one I like a lot, even though I think they could have thrown in an extra pistol at least.