I was at Target the other day, hunting for TFs as usual. As a seasoned TF hunter, my optics are quick to notice figures that I have never seen before. This holds true even for TFs that I don’t buy, like Flip and Change figs (or Flip n’ Fails as I like to call them). So imagine my surprise when I saw the fig in the pic below, on the left.
At first I was like “Whoa! A new fig!” Then I picked up the box, and I get the feeling I have seen this box before. Sure enough, comparing with some items nearby on the shelf, I realized someone transformed this Optimus into truck mode, put it back in the box, and returned it to Target. A look at the top of the box confirms it, in the pic below.
I guess some fan out there did not fully appreciate the wonders of the Flip n’ Fail. And he was too lazy to even properly put Optimus back in robot mode for the return… hahaha. Though I do give him credit for the thorough re-package work. It could pass for factory if identical new figs weren’t nearby.
And just to be clear, I do not buy Flip n’ Fails. I would stop collecting TFs altogether if Hasbro only made Flip n’ Fails.
Transform and Roll Out.
Continuing with the tradition of this blog, I will still document what I am buying each month. I am now back-posting what I bought per month since the start of 2014.
- Mastermind Creations Fortis, tfsource.com, $89.99
- Generations Thrilling 30 Dreading, Target, $17.99
- FansProject Diesel, tfsource.com, $119.95
I have opened all of these. Fortis (not Headstrong) is almost exactly like Bovis, which I was not expecting. I thought MMC would do more to distinguish between the 2 figures which forms the legs of Predaking. Dreadwing is a redeco of Generations Thrilling 30 Megatron. Only differences between these 2 figs are the paint job and the head mold.
Diesel (not Motormaster) is a complicated piece to say the least. He’s packaged in truck mode like you see in the pic above. In the pics below, I have him transformed to his robot mode, with and without armor.
And for course the real reason we hardcore collectors all get this figure is so we can form the mighty Intimidator (not Menasor)!
So that’s 3 figures for the month, two 3rd party figs and one generations figs. Not a bad way to start the new year.
Transform and Roll Out!
Welcome to the Transformation of this blog! After about a seven month hiatus, I’m back! You are looking at the first post of TFMatrix.com.
I had been blogging on WordPress.com for over 4 years, which was great. But it was time I moved off their site and went to my own self hosted blog. So in January of 2014, I registered for a new domain. I meant to transfer the old content here as soon as I could, but of course life gets in the way. Many things delayed the launch of TF Matrix, including work, going on vacation (multiple times), getting sick (multiple times), researching just exactly how to transfer content off of WordPress.com, and other personal obligations. Before you knew it, half the year has passed. I did not mean to be away from blogging for so long.
But now I’m back and better than ever! In my last post I said I have “big changes planned for this blog in early 2014,” and you are looking at it. It took longer than I thought it would, but better late than never. Moving forward, I have even more planned for TF Matrix. As a lifelong TransFan, I promise to keep the Spark alive for eons to come.
Coincidentally, this is the 200th post of this blog. I’m glad this milestone celebrates the launching of TF Matrix. Transformers are constantly changing and evolving like their namesake, so it’s only fair that my blog emulates this behavior. Look for more great TF content in the future. Long live Transformers! Now and forever… Transform and Roll Out!
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!
Before I say goodbye to 2013, it is time to count up the Transformers for December.
- Generations Thrilling 30 Doubledealer, hasbrotoyshop.com, $15.99
- Generations Thrilling 30 Rhinox, hasbrotoyshop.com, $15.99
- Mech Ideas Apex and Geminus, tfsource.com, $69.95
- Crazy Devy CDMW-34, tfsource.com, $28.00
- Mech Ideas W-01 Longblast Upgrade Kit, tfsource.com, $15.95
- ToyWorld Trace, tfsource.com, $64.95
- Generations Thrilling 30 Ratbat, gift from Gemini
- TF Prime RID Vehicon with custom head, gift from Gemini
2013 ended on a good note with all these TFs! This might be the only month where I had more 3rd party items than offical Hasbro or Takara items. Altogether, there were 8 purchases for 7 figures (Apex and Geminus was one purchase, and add-ons I don’t count as figures). 9 items total, 4 official products and 5 3rd party products.
Doubledealer, Rhinox, and Ratbat I have not opened yet, but will soon. It’s kind of a drag that Doubledealer still has the same mechanical problems as Blitzwing. I was hoping Hasbro would get around to fixing it for Doubledealer, but no such luck. As for Rhinox, I am hearing good things about the figure, so I’m optimistic. Ratbat is a repaint of Generations Scourge. That is a fantastic mold, so I expect this to be good as well.
I haven’t opened the two upgrade kits either, but I plan to do that soon. I need to dig out Hercules, then add this Crazy Devy head to it to check out the LED visor. The Longblast Upgrade Kit is designed to work with RTS Special Ops Jazz. I think I will use this kit on my G2 Jazz of the same mold. But I mostly got this kit for the little Shockwave and Megatron guns. I can’t wait to try those guns with other CHUG figures.
I opened Trace as soon as I got him. I really liked Aurora, so I had to get Trace. ToyWorld did not let me down with this Chase homage. I’m very happy with how Trace turned out. He’s bigger than Aurora. In fact, he’s about the size of standard deluxes that Hasbro used to make in years past, while Aurora is that of the deluxes now in store (which are smaller). Check out pics in my last post for some size comparisons. I like how ToyWorld decided to base Trace on the Lamborghini Urus Concept. He looks pretty accurate to the real thing in alt mode. In robot mode, Trace is nicely proportioned, very poseable, and free of mechanical issues. I highly recommend this figure.
I heard good things about Apex and Geminus from Mech Ideas so I had to get them. At only about 70 bucks for 2 third party figures, they were a really good deal. Anyway, I also give these figures the highest possible recommendation. They are easy to transform and extremely fun to play with. They are obivous homages to G1 Jumpstarters Topspin and Twin Twist. If you need some figures to complete your Wreckers, then look no further. Apex and Geminus are durable and nicely detailed. Obviously they don’t have the original G1 auto transformation gimmick, but as adult TransFans we probably don’t much care for that anyway.
The Vehicon with the custom head is a gift from Gemini. This particular head works great with the Vehicon mold. Since this guy now looks different from the others, I think I’ll make him the Vehicon leader. I now have 6 Vehicons total. Getting a Vehicon as a gift for Christmas appears to be a trend lately. Probably won’t continue for 2014 haha.
OK, now let’s look at some statistics for 2013. Here is the break down:
- 26 figures from Transformers Prime
- 20 figures from Generations Fall of Cybertron (FOC)
- 23 figures from Generations Thrilling 30
- 10 Masterpieces
- 10 3rd Party figures
- 1 Power Core Combiner (PCC)
That’s a grand total of 90 figures for the year. It comes to 7.5 figures a month. This is less than 2012. For me that’s probably a good thing, since I have way too many TFs. I think I have been more selective in what I buy.
Also, I see most of my figs come from Generations. That’s great news, since I love CHUG. Also, Masterpieces and 3rd party figs I choose to buy are all G1 inspired. That means most of my figures are G1 derivatives. What else did you expect from a G1 guy?
And as far as the stats from month to month, I don’t really see a trend of when I buy the most TFs in 2013. Next year this might change, since it will be a movie year.
On a more personal note, I’m a little sad to be saying goodbye to 2013. This year has been good to me, both personally and professionally. I hope this good fortune will continue into 2014. And as for TFs, we know Hasbro will release a whole mess of figures since TF4 will be due out in the summer. Long time readers of this blog knows that I’m not the biggest fan of Michael Bay TFs (notice that for 2013 I did not buy a single movie TF haha). So I’m somewhat skeptical of the kinds of toys that will be put on the shelves. I just hope they don’t disturb the release of Generations.
Oh, and one more thing, I got some big changes planned for this blog in early 2014, so stay tuned. Happy New Year and long live Transformers! Transform and Roll Out!
There are quite of bit of figures taking up room on my shelf. Before I put them away, I’ll give them their 15 minutes of fame and feature them in a post.
Same pic, different angle.
From left to right
Top shelf, in robot mode: MMC Bovis, TFP Beast Hunters Shockwave, Fans Toys Quakewave, Masterpiece Acid Storm, Generations FOC Thundercracker
Top shelf, in alt mode: Generations Megatron, Generations FOC Kickback, Generations Blitzwing, TFP Breakdown, TFP Silas Breakdown, Generations FOC Shockwave
Middle shelf: Generations Orion Pax, Generations Bumblebee, Generations Springer, Generations Sandstorm, TFP Beast Hunters Optimus Prime, TFP Beast Hunters Ultra Magnus, , Generations Hoist, Generations Trailcutter
Bottom shelf: Masterpiece Prowl, Masterpiece Streak, Generations Blurr, ToyWorld Trace, ToyWorld Aurora
Can you tell who it is the oldest figure on here? That’s right, it is Blurr. I believe he was released 2010. I dug him out recently for display because he’s such an awesome fig!
With the exception of Blurr, Breakdown, and FOC Shockwave, all figures on here were acquired in 2013.
4 figures are from third parties: MMC Bovis, Fans Toys Quakewave, ToyWorld Trace, and ToyWorld Aurora.
There are 3 Masterpiece figures: Acid Storm, Prowl, and Streak. Though one could certainly make a case for Quakewave. He’s a third party fig, but he fits into the MP toys just fine.
OK, time to make more room for the figs of 2014. Into the closets these will go. Transform and Roll Out.
I got done setting up my Christmas Tree sometime this week. It’s a small manufactured tree, just to make my place look a little more festive. The GF bought me some ornaments to put up. I thought I give this tree a little more Cybertron flair, so some of my legends class Transformers are going up as ornaments!
Can you identify how many TFs are on here?
Happy Cybertronian Christmas! Transform and Roll Out.
Happy Thanksgiving! I hope everyone was able to spend it with family and friends, have lots of turkey, get to some serious Black Friday shopping, or however else you choose to best enjoy the 4 day holiday. I usually go back home to Southern California for Thanksgiving, but the past 3 times I just decided to stay here in the Bay Area. This year I spent it with the GF. Both of us are too lazy to cook so we ate at a nice Chinese Restaurant. I know, hardly your usual Thanksgiving feast. But it works for us. And it prepared us that night to rough the stores for some Black Friday deals. More on that later. For now, here are my TF acquisitions for November.
- Transformers Prime Skyquake, Toys R Us, $29.99
- Masterpiece Prowl (MP-17), hlj.com, about $47.60
- Masterpiece Streak (MP-18), hlj.com, $47.58
Finding Skyquake was completely unexpected. All TransFans are aware of it’s rarity, and how Hasbro really botched the distribution on this figure. I found this at a small Toys R Us in a mall, which is a far cry from your usual Toys R Us. The associates that work there call it Toys R Us Express, I think. Inventory here is hit and miss. I guess that’s understandable for a small store. But because of it’s weird inventory, I come here occasionally just to see if I can find something rare. And lo and behold, that day I find Skyquake. I wasn’t looking for the figure at all, but it was a pleasant surprise. Dreadwing is awesome. I expect Skyquake to be the same.
MP Prowl and Streak (Bluestreak or Silverstreak in the US) was ordered from HLJ.com. Both were shipped together for about $16. These two figures are pure TF awesomeness. In alt mode, the Nissan Fairlady 280-Z looks dead on accurate. In robot mode, both figures look exactly like their G1 counterparts, and I would expect no less from a Masterpiece figure. Engineering on these is superb. Transformation is just the right difficulty. I need to review them for sure. Overall I think I still like the MP Sideswipe mold better, but this is damn good too.
So that’s only 3 figures for the month. There appears to be a TF drought in the stores, or at least nothing I want.
As for the Black Friday shopping, here’s what I have got so far.
I won’t list prices, but these are all really good deals. I did some online shopping too, those items have yet to arrive. We’re not done either. More shopping tomorrow at the local premium outlet. Too much for one weekend lol.
Happy Cybertronian Thanksgiving! Transform and roll out.
Here is a Transformers T-shirt that I recently found at Kohl’s. I saw it and had to get it! The shirt was only $12.99, not the $20 you see on the tag.
This is the all-star Autobot team! From left to right: Bumblebee, Jazz, Optimus Prime, Hot Rod (or Rodimus), and Grimlock. All characters in their G1 bad-ass selves! If I had to pick 5 of the most famous Autobots, this would probably be it.
As testament to the popularity of this quintet, let’s examine how each character is updated in the more popular TF lines. In CHUG, Prime, Bee, and Hot Rod appeared in the very first wave! Grimlock followed shortly. It took Jazz a few years later to appear, but they all made it eventually. In the Movie-verse, Prime, Bee, and Jazz appeared in the very first film. Grimlock is confirmed to be the 4th movie. No word on Rodimus. In Animated, all 5 characters make appearances. In Binaltech/Alternator, the only one to not appear is Bumblebee, while the other 4 are re-imagined. And in the MP line, we got Prime, Grimlock, and Hot Rod. Bee is coming soon. Hopefully Takara will take a stab at doing Jazz.
All G1 Fans should get this should they see it! Transform and Roll Out.
Once again it is the end of the month, where I count up the Transformers that have come into my possession for the duration. In contrast to September, I received all these TFs in the first half of the month. And in direct contrast to October of last year, where I set a record number of TF figures purchased in a single month, this October is quite modest in terms of figures bought.
- Masterpiece Acid Storm, Toys R Us, $74.99
- Generations Thrilling 30 Optimus Prime and Roller, amazon.com, $10.94
- Generations Thrilling 30 Bumblebee and Blazemaster, amazon.com, $10.94
- ToyWorld Aurora, bbts.com, $49.99
- Mastermind Creations Bovis, bbts.com, $89.99
This comes to a total of 7 figs for October. 4 figs from Generations Thrilling 30, 1 Masterpiece fig, and 2 third party products.
MP Acid Storm was a pleasant find (though that same day, he was also available online). I have been hunting at TRU for about a month on a regular basis before I found him early in October. I really like the new Seeker MP molds. Acid Storm is an exact repaint of MP Thundercracker, and I have already mentioned what a awesome figure that is. Acid Storm certainly does not disappoint. I really wish Hasbro would also re-release Starscream and Skywarp in the US in the new MP molds.
The little Generations Thrilling 30 figures were ordered from Amazon. I have never seen these in store. So when I saw them on Amazon for only $1 more than MSRP, I wasted no time buying them. Technically they were not from Amazon, they were from TFSource selling through Amazon. That particular arrangement worked out quite well for me. I don’t live in the same state as TFSource so I don’t have to pay tax, and this is sold through Amazon so it qualifies for free ship with Amazon Prime (which I have). Anyway, the OP fig is just ok. The Bumblebee fig is not half bad. They are fun distractions, and they pose well with Metroplex.
The two third party figs are nothing short of incredible! Aurora by ToyWorld is an homage to Searchlight, a G1 Throttlebot. This figure transforms quite well. He looks nice in both modes, and the construction is solid. ToyWorld does intend to make all 6 Throttlebot homages, and supposedly they will combine! I know G1 Throttlebots never did this, but it’s nice to see ToyWorld go out of their way to make this happen. Now that I’ve seen how cool Aurora is, I plan on getting the rest of them. I got Trace (Chase homage) on pre. Now I need to get Grind Rod (Rollbar).
That leaves Bovis. Fans have been gushing left and right on TF sites and forums about how well Mastermind Creations products are. They are right. Words alone cannot do justice to the quality that MMC have put into this figure. Bovis is a homage to Tantrum, a G1 Predacon. MMC is making the whole team. If the rest of the figs turn out as well as Bovis, then we are really in for a treat. Anyway, I transformed Bovis from robot to bull. He is a really solid piece that any G1 fan needs to own. Bovis is certainly large for a figure that can combine. Predaking will be massive! I love it.
Happy Halloween! Transform and Roll Out!
I love when TransFans purposely mis-transform a figure to make it look better, or simply make it look different from a repaint that it came from. Such is the case with Fall of Cybertron Air Raid. He is a repaint of FOC Shockwave. Hasbro did make some minor mold changes to make the two figures distinct. However, their alt modes still look very similar. Fans have come up with alternate ways to transform the figure to give Air Raid a distinctive look.
First let’s look at the official alt mode configuration.
Now let’s look at an alternative way to transform this figure to its jet mode. Gemini showed me this interpretation.
I like this alternate configuration quite a bit. I think it looks just as good as the official form, if not better. At the very least, it differentiates Air Raid from Shockwave a tad more.
Transform and Roll Out.