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.
Happy Birthday to this blog! It is that time again, when I reflect back on what happened in the world of Transformers since the previous year. I can’t believe it has been 4 years already since I started this blog. A lot has happened since then. Transformers are always evolving and transforming like their namesake, and I’m glad to be along for the ride.
This blog managed to get over 100,000 hits in the past year. I think that’s pretty good, considering I do no advertising or marketing campaigns whatsoever. The huge spike in July of 2011 is because of the last TF movie, Dark of the Moon. The next movie will be summer of 2014. So can I expect another spike in hits? Only time will tell.
I do have some tentative future plans for this blog. Among them is to move it off WordPress, and host it on my own domain. I’ve been meaning to do that for some time now, but just can’t find the time. I think I’ll make that a goal for year 5.
Anyway, I’m happy to still be blogging. Long live Transformers. Now and forever… Transform and Roll Out!
September was off to a slow start as far as TF purchases go. But then a whole bunch of figures started to make their appearance past the midpoint of the month. Anyway, here they are.
- Quakewave by Fans Toys, edbomber.com, $150
- Generations Thrilling 30 Thundercracker, Toys R Us, $12.99
- Generations Thrilling 30 Hoist, Toys R Us, $12.99
- Generations Thrilling 30 Starscream and Waspinator, Target, $9.99
- Generations Thrilling 30 Metroplex and Scamper, amazon.com, $106.03
- Generations Thrilling 30 Megatron and Chop Shop, Target, $9.49
That’s a total of 6 purchases for 9 TFs. All are from the Generations Thrilling 30 line, except for Quakewave which is a third party product. There are 6 Decepticons and only 3 Autobots this month, but I think the balance of power is clearly on the side of the good guys with Metroplex alone.
For the first time in a long time, I actually opened all the figures I bought in the month! I guess when it comes to CHUG stuff, I just can’t wait. When it comes down to it, I still like G1 derivatives the best!
I went into Quakewave a little bit in my previous post, so I won’t repeat it here. In short, he’s amazing. Get him now while supplies last. Oh yeah, I also want to give a shout out here to edbomber.com. It’s a great store. Quakewave was my first purchase from them and I was very pleased. I like the usual places where I get my 3rd party Transformers, but having one more option is always a good thing. More competition is always a win for the fans.
This Thundercracker is the Fall of Cybertron version, though he’s not packaged as such. He’s a exact repaint of FOC Starscream. I love that mold, but I think in Thundercracker’s colors, this figure looks even better. Hoist is a repaint of Trailcutter, with a new head mold and a new weapon that becomes his crane. I think I actually like this figure better as Hoist.
The little Megatron and Starscream figs are pretty cool. They are easy and fun to transform, while paying good homage to their G1 selves. I kinda like Chop Shop, even though he’s super simple (think G1 Throttlebot simple). Waspinator is a total fail. All his modes suck.
And that brings us to Metroplex. This is to my knowledge the biggest Transformer ever produced! He’s pure awesomeness. You will need a lot of room to keep this guy around, but believe me he’s worth it. The $106 price tag from Amazon is nice too. Oh yeah, he also comes with Scamper. I must review him in the future. This is something I must do as a TransFan.
That covers my purchases for September. This month was kind of a pleasant surprise. I didn’t think there would be this many TFs hitting the stores. The final TF count is good, not too many that I feel overwhelmed, and not too few that I feel like there are no new figs. Plus these are all good figures that fit well into the CHUG or MP verse. Hopefully October will be just as good… Transform and Roll Out.
Here is what I currently have on display.
Same pic, different angle.
From left to right
Top shelf, in alt mode: TFP Breakdown, TFP Silas Breakdown, TFP Beast Hunters Shockwave, Generations Blitzwing, TFP Dreadwing, Generations Megatron
Top shelf, in robot mode: Fans Toys Quakewave, MP Soundwave with Laserbeak
Middle shelf: Generations Bumblebee, Generations Springer, Generations Sandstorm, TFP Beast Hunters Optimus Prime, TFP Beast Hunters Ultra Magnus, Generations Trailcutter, Generations Orion Pax
Most of the Transformers in this group I would highly recommend. Each figure is a worthy purchase that any TransFan would be happy to include in his collection. The two Breakdown figures are some of the best to come out of the TF Prime line. MP Soundwave is considered by many to be the best MP figure ever made. Generations Springer and Sandstorm are nothing short of spectacular, and I dare argue that, for the first time ever, Hasbro has done triple changers right with these two. Trailcutter has finally arrived to the CHUG party, but better late than never. And for the first time in TF history, Hasbro made a Orion Pax figure. This figure is still a pretty rare find as of this writing.
Quakewave by Fans Toys is absolutely amazing! This is a 3rd party Shockwave homage that scales incredibly well with the MP line (check him out next to MP Soundwave). Construction of the figure is very solid, and the mechanical design of this toy is on par with any MPs that Hasbro and Takara has come up with. He looks good in both modes. Transformation is fun without being overly complex. Price is also reasonable at $150. The LED gimmicks (in both eye and cannon arm) are very cool.
The only two figures that may be debatable is Bumblebee and Blitzwing. Blitzwing has the shoulder-non-locking construction issue that all fans are aware of by now. And Bumblebee, despite being a brand new mold, feels too similar to past figures of the same character. But even with these flaws, I still recommend them. Blitzwing’s problems can be remedied with just a little bit of work. And if for some reason you don’t own any Movie-verse or TF Prime Bumblebees, then this new figure should feel very refreshing for you.
Some of these figs have been on the shelf for a while. They’ve had their 15 minutes, so back to the closets they go to make more room. I expect my next post like this to appear very different. Til then… Transform and Roll Out.