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Transformers Purchased in May 2013

May 31st, 2013 No comments

I don’t know why, but May 2013 seemed like a long month. Yes there are 31 days in the month, but it’s hard to imagine one extra day making a big difference (unless of course you talk to those in retail). More often than not, a month seems to fly by these days. Yet something about this past May feels different… can’t quite put my finger on it though.

And now I’m wondering if there are months on Cybertron. That’s an idea worth exploring. But on to more pressing business. These are my TF acquisitions for this May.

  • Transformers Prime Beast Hunters Shockwave, Kmart, $21.99

  • Transformers Prime Beast Hunters Optimus Prime, Walmart, $18.97

  • Masterpiece Rumble and Jaguar (MP-15), hlj.com, about $35
  • Masterpiece Frenzy and Buzzsaw (MP-16), hlj.com, about $35

  • Generations Springer, Walmart, $22.99

  • Transformers Prime Arms Micron Silas Breakdown (AM-24), amiami.com, about $50

  • Transformers Prime Arms Micron Unicron (AM-19), amiami.com, about $65

  • Transformers Prime Arms Micron Smokescreen (AM-26), amiami.com, about $13

All the above adds up to 10 figures for the month. 5 from TF Prime, 4 Masterpieces, and 1 Generations fig. Not a bad haul for May. Though only 2 of the figures were found in store by me (Shockwave and OP). The 4 MPs were online purchases. Springer, Silas Breakdown, Unicron, and Smokescreen were successfully located by my friend Gemini.

It should be noted I did not make a single TF purchase in the first half of May. So I was really beginning to think that this month would be like last month where I only got 1 TF. Then on May 17th I find Shockwave. On May 19th I decided to get BH Optimus. I’ve seen this figure plenty of times before, but was hoping to find him cheaper. I got sick of waiting so on this day I bought it. Then the MP figs show up later that week from hlj. And on Memorial Day weekend, Gemini hands me all the TFs he found for me. All these figures bunched up toward the end to make May a good month for TFs.

As of this writing, I have only opened the three US figures. Shockwave is pretty cool, though some aspects of his construction could have been better. On my figure, the right arm keeps falling off at the shoulder. A little nail polish seems to fix the issue, but this shouldn’t have been a problem to begin with. I also don’t like the position of the ratchet increments on the hip joints. The beast armor is worthless. But other than these issues, he’s an excellent fig. Both modes look great, transformation is fun and easy, he’s plenty articulated, and the design and colors are pure Shockwave.

I highly recommend Beast Hunters Optimus, like all the other reviews I have seen. Both modes are awesome and I detect no construction issues. Articulation is superb, and the alt mode comes together well. The major complaint among the TF fandom about this figure (which I agree with) is the ugly head mold, but some 3rd party is coming out with a custom head which should address this. Some fans also gripe about the green windows and sword, but that doesn’t bug me too much.

Springer is pure awesomeness! All TransFans have nothing but praises for him. For this reason, I opened him with such a quickness that I forgot to take pics of him when he was still unopened in the box. I haven’t transformed him yet, but I’m totally digging the robot mode. For those that don’t know, this Springer is modeled after Nick Roche’s version from Last Stand of the Wreckers (a brilliant TF graphic novel BTW). Many fans already project this fig to be TF of the year. I’ll transform him soon and see how much I agree with that assessment, but that many fans can’t be wrong so I know I’ll be pleased to say the least.

As for the 7 Takara TFs, I plan to open them all.

In unrelated news, this past Sunday I attended Fanime 2013. In a earlier post I said I will cover the event, but I really didn’t take any pics this time, so I guess I won’t. This was the first anime con for me in several years. The big draw these days appear to be all the cos-players. I estimate between 30 to 40% of all attendees are in costume. Shopping doesn’t seem like it’s as big as before. Sales of anime DVDs and Blurays have really dwindled. I guess it’s a sign of the times.

BotCon 2013 is next month. I probably will not go, but you never know. Til next time, Transform and Roll Out.

Categories: On The Hunt, Pics

Throttlebots!

May 30th, 2013 2 comments

Behold my fellow TransFans! Feast your optics on my complete collection of G1 Throttlebots!

Back row (left to right): Chase, Wideload, Searchlight
Front row (left to right): Goldbug, Rollbar, Freeway

Haha ok I know these are not the most impressive bunch. But I guess my interest in this often forgettable sextet got rebooted after ToyWorld started making homages to them.

The gimmick of the Throttlebots is that they have the pullback motors that were very popular of toys back in the 80s. In G1, Jump Starters and Battle Chargers had this same gimmick as well. But those sub-groups also transform automatically as part of the release sequence (from alt mode to robot). Throttlebots differ in that they must be transformed manually, but the pullback mechanism can be initiated in either car or robot mode. As Transformers, they pretty much sucked. Though technically not repaints, all six figures in the group transform exactly the same. Like Bumblebee and Cliffjumper from Season 1. Transformation is super simple, even for G1 standards. All you do is raise the figure, flip out the arms, flip back the rear to reveal the head, and push in the motor. They have absolutely no articulation at all, a total fail even for G1.

The first of these that I got was Goldbug, at a Thrifty. I got him because he reminded me of Bumblebee (before I found out he is in fact Bumblebee). Not sure why I decided to get Rollbar and Freeway later. Guess I was bored and had some extra spending money. But yeah, these 3 I had since G1, and I know for a fact they’re the real deal.

Now that ToyWorld is making their homages, I decided to get the rest now in 2013. One seller had Chase and Searchlight, which I bought for $8 shipped on eBay (he took my best offer). Then I won another auction for Wideload at $5 shipped. These 3 are all used, but all in pretty good shape. As far as I can tell, these are all authentic genuine Hasbro products. Being able to complete the set at these prices was well worth it for a G1er such as myself.

I am looking forward to ToyWorld’s homages to this group. I thought it was kind of funny and weird for ToyWorld to update this particular team. But after I saw reviews of Grind Rod (Rollbar) and Aurora (Searchlight), I am quite impressed. They will supposedly combine into a Gestalt as well. Like I mentioned in my last post, I pre-ordered Trace (Chase), who is the 3rd fig in the group. I may need to order the first 2 figs before they’re gone.

Throttlebots… Transform and Roll Out!

Categories: Pics

My Current Pre-Orders, May 2013

May 24th, 2013 4 comments

I got a whole bunch of crap on pre-order. So much that it makes sense to make a post dedicated on just this topic. So here they are.

Takara MP-17 Masterpiece Prowl

Takara MP-18 Masterpiece Bluestreak

FansProject Causality CA-11 Last Chance

FansProject Causality CA-12 Down Force

Mastermind Creations Reformatted R-01 Terminus Hexatron

Mastermind Creations Reformatted – Feral Rex – R-02 Talon – Aerial Assaulter

Mastermind Creations Reformatted – Feral Rex – R-03 Bovis – Supply Specialist

MakeToys MB-01-C Mobine Paladin / Chaos

MakeToys MB-01-SP1 Mobine Missile Launcher Jungle Type

Beelzeboss Heroic Duo Custom Kit Version 2.0

RENDERFORM: GOLD SCOUT UPGRADE KIT + BONUS WEAPON

ToyWorld TW-T03 Trace – Gestalt Part 3

That’s a lot of stuff! With the exception of the 2 MPs, they are all 3rd party products. It seems like everyone wants a piece of custom TF action. Perhaps this is a more lucrative business than I thought. Only Primus knows when all this stuff will get released though. I hope it’s soon.

On unrelated news, I will be attending Fanime 2013 this Sunday. Look for a coverage soon… Transform and Roll Out.

Categories: On The Hunt, Pics

Trailbreaker and Trailcutter

May 12th, 2013 No comments

Back in 1984 when Transformers first came on the scene, there were only 3 categories of Autobots that you could buy. There was Optimus Prime, who was in a category all by himself (and rightfully so). There were the Minicars, such as Bumblebee. And then there were the Autobot Cars, a US localization of Japanese Diaclone figures. A scan of the Season 1 catalog below illustrates the 3 categories.

Of all the 1st Season Autobot Cars, Trailbreaker is the only one that has yet to have a proper update in the CHUG-verse. Sure they made a Legend class figure a while back, but that’s not a real update considering all the other characters had a deluxe class or larger CHUG figure made.

Earlier this year, Hasbro finally announced that they will be releasing a deluxe size Trailcutter. I’m guessing for trademark reasons, they could not get the name Trailbreaker. But whatever. I am totally stoked that Trailbreaker is finally getting the recognition he deserves! This means the Season 1 Cars will be complete in CHUG. Pics of this Trailcutter have been floating around for a while now, but I need to do my part and post them here.

But there is another reason why I’m so thrilled at Trailbreaker’s inclusion in CHUG. Back in G1, he was the very first Autobot Car that I owned. I still remember that trip to TRU. It was 1985. I was standing in the TF aisle and my parents were gonna buy me a TF car of my choosing. The Season 2 cars were already out by then (I remember distinctly seeing Red Alert), but Season 1 cars were still on the shelves. I looked at the section for a long time. In the end I decided on Trailbreaker.

I can’t explain why I picked Trailbreaker. If you were going by characters, it’s hard to pick Trailbreaker over one of the cooler characters, like Jazz or Sideswipe. Admittedly, I didn’t know the TF characters too well, since I barely knew any English. So my choice was not based on TF persona. Likewise, if you were going by alt mode (all TFs back then were packed in alt mode), it’s hard to imagine picking a SUV over a sports car. So it’s a mystery why I went with Trailbreaker. Maybe the toy just looked too cool in the box. I’m partial to TFs that I own. So for the next few years, I cheered every time Trailbreaker did something cool in the cartoons. Like using his Force Field so save the day when another Autobot has gotten them into some sorry Decepticon mess.

Since Trailbreaker and I have this special history, I’m kind of irked by the fact that Hasbro CHUG-updated all the other Season 1 cars except for him. It’s like I picked the character that got left out. But better late than never I always say. Trailbreaker has finally arrived at the party. And besides, the pics above look awesome! Maybe in this case, they were saving the best for last. Yes that must be it. I feel better that my character of choice received this proud distinction. 🙂

I still have my G1 Trailbreaker figure, from 1985. In this modern era of new Transformers, I only have 2 Trailcutters. And to give Trailbreaker the recognition he deserves, I’m taking group pics of all of them.

The largest figure in the pics is obviously G1. The middle size figure is a Cyberverse Commander class figure from TF Prime, the new Beast Hunters subline. And the smallest figure there is a Legends figure from Reveal the Shield. I will give some quick thoughts on each of these figures.

G1
This figure needs no introduction. They sure don’t make TFs like this anymore. G1 figures, especially the first 2 seasons, were generally alt mode first and Trailbreaker is no exception. His alt mode still holds up well today. Trailbreaker is a fourth generatino Toyota HiLux and the toy resembles the real thing very closely. The diecast construction and real rubber tires were iconic of figures at the time. I had this figure since 1985 and even today he’s in pretty good shape. In alt mode he feels like one cohesive whole. He rolls extremely well on a flat surface, even when compared to other G1, because he’s got such high clearance like a real pick-up truck. In robot mode Trailbreaker looks somewhat different from his cartoon counterpart. Like many other Season 1 characters, the show made him look better than he really is. But the toy’s robot mode is still not too bad for it’s time. Much better than the robot mode of some other G1 cars, like Ironhide or Sunstreaker. Like all G1 the poseability is super limited. You can move the arms, but that’s it.

Reveal the Shield Legend
I bought this figure back in 2011. For a legends figure he’s not bad. The overall transformation schema of this piece is almost exactly like G1. The arms and back are formed differently, but those are the only obvious transformation differences. The amazing thing about this figure is that, though small, it doesn’t feel that much dumbed down from G1 when compared side by side. The transformation complexity is almost equal. I guess toy technology have made some significant progress in the last 25+ years. The alt mode is sufficient, and the robot mode is an obvious homage to G1. The look of the legs and the force field module on the head are both very G1 inspired.

Transformers Prime Beast Hunters Cyberverse Commander
This figure was bought in March of this year, only two months from this writing. Normally I don’t buy Cyververse figs, but when I saw Trailcutter I had to get him, since I’m partial to the character. This figure is a slight remold of Cyberverse Ironhide. Hasbro made enough differences here to properly distinguish the two. Trailcutter gets a new head mold, shoulder cannons, spikes on the shoulders and arms, and a weapon. I applaud Hasbro for not simply giving us a unmodified repaint. This figure has the most articulation of the 3 TFs here. You can do some nice poses with this fig. There’s even articulation in the head, though there’s probably too much around the neck to really put that to use. He’s also the most difficult out of these 3 to transform, though that’s not really saying much. The colors are pure Trailcutter, and the shoulder cannons and head Force Field module are nice G1 homages.

I cannot wait to get this new CHUG Trailcutter. He’s finally getting some love! Transform and Roll Out!

Categories: Pics, TF News, Toy Reviews