Archive for February, 2013

Transformers Purchased in February 2013

February 28th, 2013 4 comments

February is a short month. Last year at this time was when I started keeping track of my monthly purchases (that post appears here). I can’t believe it’s gonna be March already. Didn’t seem like that long ago when it was New Years. Anyway, here are the TFs for this month.

  • Generations Fall of Cybertron Starscream,, $14.99

  • Transformers Prime Beast Hunters Predaking, Target, $19.99

  • Masterpiece Soundwave and Laserbeak,, about $124

  • Transformers Prime Arms Micron Wildrider,, about $17
  • Transformers Prime Arms Micron Rumble,, about $17

  • Generations Fall of Cybertron Grimlock,, $22.99

7 figures total for Feb 2013. A good number of TFs for one month, not too many, not too few. 2 figs come from Generations FOC, 2 Masterpiece figs, and 3 TF Prime figs. With the exception of Predaking and Wildrider, I opened all the figures.

FOC Starscream is pretty legit IMO. I think he’s one of the better FOC deluxes. In fact, other than the Shockwave / Air Raid mold, the Starscream mold may be my favorite.

MP Soundwave and MP Laserbeak is pure TF awesomeness! I may do a review soon. There are plenty of reviews out there already though, so don’t just take my word for it. Many fans consider Soundwave to be the best MP figure out there. I don’t know if I would go that far (since I love MP Sideswipe so much), but he’s definitely in the top 3. And Laserbeak, he’s just too cool! I think the cassettes are G1 size, but this Laserbeak is 10 times better than his G1 incarnation. He’s way more show accurate, and his back/thruster/laser is part of the transformation. If you like G1, this purchase should be a no brainer.

Arms Micron Rumble is cool, much like the US version of RID Rumble. The head mold is different, but the AM one is more G1 by far. I got this so I can have both Rumble and Frenzy. Obviously one of these Rumbles need to be Frenzy. Maybe they will take turns being Frenzy, depending on my mood.

Last but not least, we have Grimlock. Grimlock figures always kick ass (well maybe not the Classic figure). I might review him too, but I touched on him briefly in my last post. I think overall, the T-Rex mode leaves a little to be desired, but the robot mode is amazing. As for the Dino Grimlocks, the MP is still the best. But either this or the Animated figure would deserve to be number two.

So that’s it, my TFs in Feb 2013. 4 of the figures (2 MPs and 2 AMs) are Japan only. The other 3 US figures are still somewhat rare as of this writing. But they can be found if you keep your optics open. So keep hunting my fellow Transfans… Transform and Roll Out.

Categories: On The Hunt, Pics

My Grimlock Collection

February 26th, 2013 2 comments

I recently received my Fall of Cybertron Voyager Grimlock from Amazon. Grimlock is just too cool, so I opened the figure with a quickness. I’m glad we’re finally getting a CHUG Grimlock that is Voyager size. The general consensus is that this figure has a kick-ass robot mode, with a so-so dino mode. I would agree. I transformed him to the T-rex, but I’ll probably display him as robot most of the time.

But since I have him and MP Grimlock out on the shelf at this moment, I decided to do a group shot with other Grimlocks that I have. Check it out!

From left to right: Binaltech (in box), Alternator, Titanium, Masterpiece, Generations Fall of Cybertron, Animated, Classic

No Decepticon will dare mess with this group of Grimlocks!

Obviously they are all in their alt modes. I plan to transform them all into robot, except for the Binaltech since that’s new in the box and will stay that way. Then I’ll make another post.

Conspicuously missing is G1 Grimlock. I don’t have one! They re-issued him once in G2, which I don’t have either. Not sure if he was ever re-issued after that. I hope they do a Encore version. I need to have at least some form of the Grimlock that started it all.

“Me Grimlock kick butt! Me Grimlock say… Transform and Roll Out!”

Categories: Pics

10 of My Least Transformed Transformers

February 24th, 2013 4 comments

I have a lot of Transformers. Probably too many by most conventional standards. Space becomes an issue, as I have mentioned repeatedly on this blog. However, there’s another issue, and it’s that you simply don’t have time for all of them. Back in G1, I didn’t get TFs all that often. So I gave every single TF the time it deserved. All my G1 figures were transformed over and over and over. Some of them to the point of having extremely loose joints, while others became straight up broken.

Nowadays, if I transform a figure more than 4 times, I would say I transformed that figure a lot. It’s not that I’m trying to keep the figure mint or anything. I just don’t have the time, and I have too many TFs. Maybe I just need to slow down on buying them. But I enjoy TF hunting too much.

Most figures I will transform at least twice before it gets put in a box somewhere. However, I do have some figures where I only transformed them once. Meaning if they were packed in alt mode, I would transform it to robot, and it stays that way, never even going back to alt mode. Or vice versa. Below is a list of 10 TFs where this has happened. But first some ground rules about my selections:

  • The figure must exist on My TF List.
  • I must have opened the figure; figures that I purposely keep new do not count.
  • I must have owned the figure for more than a year.

So based on these rules, what are my least transformed TFs? Let’s find out. All pics courtesy of

Series: Hunt for the Decepticons
Allegiance: Autobot
Mode in Package: Robot
Class: Voyager
Highbrow is one of my favorite figures from HftD. I really like the old WWII plane alt mode that he has. Not too many figures in the world of TF has such an alt mode. I documented his purchase back in this post. That was about 2 years ago, so I can now confirm that I have only ever seen this figure once in store. And I hunt a lot. Highbrow is a rare figure indeed. Anyway, I transformed this guy from robot to plane, and it has stayed that way since for about 2 years. Maybe it’s because I like the plane so much better than the robot for this figure. And here’s another funny thing: I did the exact same thing for his redeco, Powerdive. Got him from robot to plane, and he stayed that way on my shelf for about 3 months now. I’m not counting Powerdive as a entry here since I only had him for about 3 months. Both Highbrow and Powerdive are great figures, so I’m hoping I can make some time to transform either one back to robot real soon.

Series: Animated
Allegiance: Autobot
Mode in Package: Car
Class: Deluxe
Back in this post I outlined my foray into the world of TF Animated. I admit, I did not at all like the Animated look when I first saw the toys. But eventually it kinda grows on you. Anyway, I bought a bunch of used figures from a guy on Craigslist for $80. Blurr was one of them. Almost all the figures in the set was in robot mode when I received them. I have transformed Blurr once to car, but that was it. As I write this, I don’t even have that much recollection of the toy. I just remember the robot being real skinny, transforming him once to a sleek and sexy car, then putting him away. All this happened in a blur (pun intended). But I do remember him being a decent figure, so I might dig him out later and transform him some more.

Series: Animated
Allegiance: Autobot
Mode in Package: Dinosaur
Class: Deluxe
Snarl was another Animated figure that came with the huge used purchase that I mentioned above for Blurr. And just like Blurr, I received him in robot mode. If I remember right, I got 15 figures total in the used set (a steal for a mere $80). Snarl was one of the figures that I transformed last. And I’m not sure why since I love the Dinobots. Maybe because Grimlock got all the Dinobot love, or maybe because deep down I’m resentful at the fact he’s called Snarl when he should’ve been called Slag. Whatever the reason, I remember I wasn’t all that impressed with the figure. I can’t give concrete reasons though. I just remember him being sub par. Anyway, he was transformed once from robot to dino. That is perhaps not enough time to make a proper evaluation of the figure. So I should maybe give him another chance and transform him again.

Series: Dark of the Moon
Allegiance: Autobot
Mode in Package: Robot
Class: Leader
Now for the only Leader class figure on this list. DOTM Leader Ironhide was a figure that I wanted for some time before I was able to locate him in store. When I started buying DOTM toys in the summer of 2011, I was on the lookout to get a Ironhide figure. I almost bought the Voyager version of Ironhide, but then I learned of the Leader class figure. Ironhide would agree that bigger is better, so I had to go Leader class. I transformed him once to truck when I got him, and for reasons that elude me, I never transformed him again. I can’t explain why. I think this is a very solid TF with a robust robot mode and a beefy truck mode, while not being overly difficult to transform for a Leader class fig in the Movie-verse. He’s got some nice gimmicks too. It’s possible I simply like that hefty truck too much, so I just left it like that. I can’t really see myself digging this out anytime soon to transform him either, so I guess he will stay as a truck to who knows when.

Series: Power Core Combiners
Allegiance: Decepticon
Mode in Package: Robot
Class: N/A
Finally, a Decepticon on this list. I bought Sledge when I was still with my Ex. We were at Target, and of course I had to stop by the TF aisle. Sledge was quite rare at the time, I think I only saw him once before this trip. The Ex really liked the purple Mini-Con, since that’s one of her favorite colors. So I bought Sledge. This is one purchase I wish I could take back. As a general rule, PCCs are crap. My buddy Gemini and I call them Power Crap Combiners. There are exceptions (like Heavytread and Skyhammer), but Sledge is not one of them. He’s crappy for even PCC standards. I transformed him once from robot to excavator and never looked back. In all likelihood, I will never transform Sledge again, unless I have a real good reason. Even if you are forced to play with PCCs, there are better figures in that line to amuse yourself with.

Series: Reveal the Shield
Allegiance: Decepticon
Mode in Package: Robot
Class: Scout
Chopsaw is not a figure I would have normally bought. The only reason I even have him is because I really wanted RTS Scout Class Windcharger. All G1-ers will tell you that RTS Windcharger is an awesome figure that pays perfect homage to the G1 character of the same name. All CHUG fans wanted RTS Windcharger, but for the most part he was nowhere to be found in stores. He was made in extremely limited quantities, and Hasbro was having some serious distribution issues with RTS figures. For me, the only way to get him at MSRP was at BotCon 2011. Hasbro’s not stupid though. They made it so that Windcharger must be purchased in a set with 5 other figures. And it’s not like there’s a discount. That was one way for Hasbro to unload shelf-warmers at MSRP. Anyway, Chopsaw is one figure in that set. I outlined that purchase in this post. To be fair, Chopsaw is a nifty little figure. He’s got a wacky robot mode, but the motorcycle alt mode ain’t half bad. I could see myself play with this figure some more. Not a priority though.

Series: Hunt for the Decepticons
Allegiance: Autobot
Mode in Package: Robot
Class: Scout
Here is another figure that I would not usually buy. Again, this is another fig as part of the set that was forced on you in order to acquire Windcharger. I’m not really a big fan of this figure. In fact, out of that set of 6, Backfire is by far the worst figure IMO. Some fans may like him, but not me. It has been speculated that this figure is an homage to Cy-Kill from the GoBots. Probably because of the motorcycle alt mode and the colors. They may be right, I dunno. I could maybe see a customizer turning this into Cy-Kill. But I know this: Backfire sucks. I transformed him once and I see no further pleasure from doing it again. Only play as a last resort.

Series: Dark of the Moon
Allegiance: Autobot
Mode in Package: Robot
Class: Basic Human Alliance
Two Backfires on the same list?! Say it ain’t so! I guess with a name like Backfire, everything you do is destined to fail. But seriously, DOTM Backfire is not too shabby. I think he’s one of the better Basic Human Alliance figures. Well, technically, I don’t know if calling them Basic HA is accurate. Human Alliance figures only come in two sizes. They started out doing only larger ones, usually slightly bigger than a Voyager figure. Then they started doing these smaller ones that are somewhere between a Scout and Deluxe. Kinda like PCC size. Regardless, Backfire is one of the better smaller ones. My favorite Basic HA would probably be Sandstorm and Half-Track. If I were to pick a 2nd favorite, it probably be Backfire. I like his robot mode, and I really like his ATV alt mode. This alt mode comes together quite well, and the human figure can sit on him just fine. I went into HA figures in this post, and I just realized now I bought Backfire and some other smaller HAs after that. I could see myself digging out Backfire later and transforming him some more, if only to play with that ATV.

Series: Transformers (2007 Movie)
Allegiance: Autobot
Mode in Package: Motorcycle
Class: Scout
Here is the only female figure to appear on this list. When I was compiling this, I started looking at my TF list to find the figures that were barely transformed. I don’t know why, but all of a sudden it hit me, I have Elita-One from the 1st Movie! She was a Target exclusive. I guess I got her because I have never seen Hasbro make figures of Elita-One, and this is a character that only hardcore G1-ers like myself would recognize, so I had to have her. However as a toy, she must’ve been unmemorable. I say that because, prior to this post, I didn’t even have her on my TF List! So I had to add her to the list first before publishing this. I don’t have much recollection of the figure. She must be a repaint of something, I just don’t know what. In fact, on Seibertron, I see 8 redecos of this mold. I’ll reserve my thoughts about the figure after I dig her out and transform her some more, since what I can recall is hazy at best. But I do remember transforming her only once, from bike to robot. That in itself cannot be a good sign. Heck, the fact that I forgot to include her in the TF list is a really bad sign. But who knows, taste change. My taste in women have changed over the years, so maybe in female TFs too? LOL.

Series: Generations, War For Cybertron
Allegiance: Decepticon
Mode in Package: Robot
Class: Deluxe
I saved the best for last. Here is a figure I’m embarrassed to have on this list. Soundwave is one of my all time favorite characters. So why would I even have a figure of Soundwave where I only transformed him once? I can’t explain it. Sometimes you rarely transform a figure because they’re too difficult, or maybe one mode is significantly better than the other so you just leave them in that mode, or its such a crappy figure that you don’t want to transform it anymore. WFC Deluxe Soundwave shares none of these faults. I’m guessing this figure must have been released when many other figures flooded the shelves, or he simply came around at a time in my life when there was too much going on. But whatever the reason, I need to dig out Soundwave and transform him some more. I remember transforming him only once, from robot to car. If memory serves, I was impressed with both modes. Now would be a good time to compare this figure with the Voyager figure from FOC. I think they each got their strengths, but I’ll know after I have them stand side by side. Apparently it’s also possible to have this Soundwave transform into a Cybertronian boombox. Not sure if that’s official or a fan creation, but I’m eager to try it.

So these are my least transformed Transformers. As I look at this list, some things come to mind. Six of these figures are from Movie lines, or Movie sub lines. I guess this finding does not surprise me. Only one figure falls into CHUG, and that’s WFC Soundwave. I would have been real surprised if this list were full of CHUG figures. Also, four figures transform into motorcycles. Maybe one some level, I don’t enjoy motorcycle transformers.

There are only 3 Decepticons on here. I’m pretty sure I don’t discriminate based on faction. Maybe they just make a lot more Autobots. If I get really bored one of these days, I’ll go through my TF list and count.

The good news in all this is that I don’t have any TFs where I opened and never transformed. I have heard of some TransFans complain about this phenomenon. I hope it never happens to me.

What are your least transformed TFs? Feel free to comment below.

Transform and Roll Out!

Categories: Top Ten

Roadbot 1:18 Scale Toyota Celica Review

February 7th, 2013 5 comments

Several years ago, my buddy Gemini got me a Roadbot for my birthday. For those that don’t know, Roadbots are a line of transforming robot toys that transform from robot to car/truck/motorcycle and back. Not affiliated with Hasbro or Takara in any way, the Roadbots are made by HappyWell, a company in China. The toys are often seen as third party cousins of Alternators or Binaltechs for several reasons. The alt mode of each Roadbot are all real vehicles, and in this form the toys are supposedly on par with official replicas. Roadbots come in several scales, from 1:32 to 1:12. Is “Roadbot” a wordplay on robot? Your guess is as good as mine.

Gemini got me the 1:18 scale Toyota Celica Tuner Version Roadbot. This is because I drive a Toyota Celica, pictured below.

I removed the license plate numbers with Photoshop for obvious reasons. I have had this car for over 12 years now. It’s got over 225k miles on it currently. Who knows how much longer my ride will last. But for now it’s still going strong and I plan to keep it for a while.

Anyway, here is the Celica Roadbot in its usual packaging. I ripped this pic from TFSource since I trashed the box as soon as I opened the figure all those years ago.

OK, now on to the Roadbot itself. Before this review, I transformed this guy only once, from robot to car when I first got it. He stayed this way all these years. So first let’s see some pics in alt mode.

This 1:18 scale Roadbot is a pretty large figure, but more on this later. As someone who looks at a real Celica everyday, the first thing I will comment on is the authenticity of the alt mode. In my opinion, the Roadbot captured the Celica pretty well. There’s no way you would mistake this alt mode as any other car. There are some areas of the vehicle where I think the scale is a little off, but that would just be nitpicking on my part.

As far as detail goes, what’s there is decent. This figure is at least 4 years old now, so it would be unfair to compare the details with those on the figures of today. Keep in mind that this is a transforming toy made by a third party, so overall it sort of still has a “toy” look. The overall paint job is great. In fact, the paint is probably better than most TFs. This piece is mostly a glossy metallic blue with silver pieces here and there. Headlights and taillights are made of separate clear plastic pieces that adds to the realism of the vehicle. The rims are a nice chrome silver. Front windshield is made of clear plastic. I also like how there’s a Toyota emblem painted on in the front grill area. Though I wish they used a different color, the black is kinda hard to see. The side mirrors are painted a dull grey. I kinda wish they used a more reflective color, or at least use reflective stickers. The rear license plate just has the Toyota emblem with the words “TOYOTA” below it. This is a sticker. The words “CELICA” are engraved into the mold right above it, which is pretty cool because I see that on my car too. I’m not sure if HappyWell got official license from Toyota or any other makes to do the Roadbots.

Construction of the piece is extremely solid. In alt mode, this guy can withstand some heavy treatment. The Roadbot is a lot more durable than your average TFs. You don’t have to worry about damaging the toy from rough play. Like all Binaltechs and Alternators, the tires are made of rubber. As far as I can tell, this piece is all plastic, no diecast.

Now for some features of the Roadbot in alt mode. Notice on the box, it says “With Lights & Sound”. In alt mode, press a button on the hood where the intake is, and the Roadbot will start flashing the front headlights in orange and make some laser sounds. It’s a cool gimmick that the kids will enjoy. Another cool feature that I didn’t take a pic of is connected front wheel steering. Most Binaltech and Alternator figures have this, and this Roadbot is no exception. Doors of the vehicle can be opened, like in the pic below.

The interior details are not half bad. Again, I’m in my car everyday so I can attest to the accuracy of the interior. The look of the dashboard, center console, and steering wheel are all reproduced faithfully. Even the look of the seats are well captured. It is obvious that the toy designers of this piece looked at a real Celica before they started design of the figure.

Here is a pic of the bottom of the Roadbot. The giant sword (which I will go into in robot mode) covers up most of the bottom of the car. I wish my Celica had a giant sword underneath it. And that it can stick out the rear bottom of my car at the push of a button to scare off pesky tailgaters.

Here are some size comparison shots. As you can see, this Roadbot is a large figure like I mentioned already. He looks big next to Alternator Ravage. And next to Generations Sideswipe, he’s just freakin’ huge!

OK, now to transform this guy to robot mode. I transformed the Roadbot to car within hours of getting the gift all those years ago, and he stayed like that the whole time. I’m too lazy to dig out the instructions, and I have practically no recollection of how to transform him. So here I’m transforming him back to robot mode for the first time, and I’m doing it purely based on pics.

After checking some other online pics and YouTube reviews, I’m fairly certain this is how the robot looks. He’s not half bad. Obviously I like the big kick ass sword that he’s holding. In fact, to get him to stand up straight without falling backwards, he must be holding that sword (but more on this later). The engine/intake piece that makes the flashing lights and sounds becomes the sword handle unit, the the large sword that was underneath the car forms the blade. So when you press the button for lights and sounds in this mode, the sword flashes and it’s really cool.

Articulation of this guy is not too good, even comparing him to other figures of his time. You get some decent articulation in the arms and legs, and the head rotates 180 degrees. But that’s about it. Even from the front, you can see there’s quite a bit of kibble all around. So what little articulation there is to begin with is hindered by all the stuff around him. This allows for a very limited set of poses. You will notice in all these pics he’s kinda posed the same, like a G1 figure. There’s just not a whole lot of poses you can do here.

The above pic is a closer shot of the Roadbot in robot mode. I like the details on this guy. I’m digging the head mold. The shape of the helmet kinda reminds of a samurai. Couple that with the giant sword, he’s got a samurai motif going. I like how the hood piece looks as his chest plate. The colors of blue and silver really work on this figure. There are some features on both forearms that I should point out. One the right forearm, there are retractable cannons that are hidden in alt mode. And on the left forearm, there are scissor-like claws. The two pieces of the claws rotate in sync with each other when they go forwards and backwards. Overall, I like how this guy looks.

The above pic shows one of the real weaknesses of this figure: the back. There’s way too much kibble on the back! It is especially bad in the back of the legs, where you see the front car frame just hanging around. The rear hatch of the vehicle kinda just sits on the back. This figure is really back heavy, and that’s part of the reason for the limited poses. Also, this is why he must be holding that giant sword, because that offsets the heavy weight of the back. The moment you take the sword off, he will most likely fall backwards.

Another major weakness of the figure is that this is too much of a puzzle-former in my opinion. Check out the pic below. These are all pieces that must be removed for transformation. The engine/intake and sword pieces I already talked about. The hood piece is removed and re-attached to form the chest, not transformed. The side-skirts must also be removed, because they go on opposite sides of the door between alt mode and robot mode. Also, the doors come off real easy during transformation, so if you count that then he’s even more of a puzzle-former.

Now for some size comparison shots in robot mode. He’s a big figure. Even next to MP Grimlock, he’s taller. He towers over all deluxe figures. I only have FOC Ultra Magnus handy so here they are together.

To sum up, I think this Roadbot has a pretty good alt mode, but the robot mode leaves a little to be desired.


  • Accurate rendition of the Toyota Celica
  • Nice detail and paint apps
  • Cool flashing lights and sounds gimmick
  • Rubber tires
  • Large figure
  • Solid construction
  • Good value – I think MSRP was around $20


  • Too much kibble and very back heavy
  • Too much puzzle-forming
  • Limited articulation and poses

So do I recommend the figure? I think if you like Binaltech and Alternator TFs, then give this guy a try. If you like Toyota Celicas and are curious about transforming toys, then go ahead and check this guy out. But if you are expecting top notch quality figures, like the recent MPs, then this figure is not for you. Oh yeah, if you like Michael Bay TFs, this figure is not for you.

Being both a Celica owner and a hardcore TransFan, this was the perfect b-day gift for me. I regret not buying any Roadbots for myself, since I am curious about the others. Maybe I’ll get them on eBay someday.

Roadbots… Transform and Roll Out!

Categories: Pics, Toy Reviews