Like many other watchmakers, Orient occasionally releases co-branded models, produced in honor of, or in cooperation with, other non-watch brands. From time to time I would take the opportunity to look at some of these special editions, which could be of interest to both collectors of Orient watches as well as fans of the other brand.
Today I am looking at one such cooperation: the Orient "Art of War" edition, produced in 2005.
I'm not the biggest expert on action figures in general, or Art of War in specific. But according to the brand website, " Berserk: Art of War is a series of character statues and figurines released by Art of War". Apparently, there are many collectors and fans of Art of War merchandise, which probably inspired the cooperation with Orient.
For the purpose of this endeavor, Orient provided two special models, each limited to 200 pieces, only differentiated in the color of the dial – one white, the other black. Interestingly, both do not feature any Orient branding – the dial, crown, bracelet, and even the movement rotor, are marked with the Art of War logo, and the case side is marked "Berserk". That might indicate that at the time, this was a much more prominent and familiar brand than Orient.
This piece was based on the 2004 "FA" line of watches, featuring a time display, power reserve at 12, month sub-dial at 6, and a "world time" bezel. The Art of War models particularly resemble the WZ0101FA (white dial version), and the WZ0081FA (black dial).
The Art of War pieces were each priced at 65,000 Yen at the time. Surprisingly, this was below the list price for the regular FA models (73,500), although in fairness, keep in mind the standard watches were often discounted by retailers whereas this was only obtainable through the official merchant at ticket price.
While very rarely seen "in the wild", one such Art of War item is being offered on eBay at the time of writing this article:
Please note I have no affiliation with the seller, and do not vouch for authenticity or quality, so buyer's caution is advised! Also note, the photos of the Art of War watches above are taken from the official Art of War website.