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Transformers Purchased in October 2015

August 22nd, 2016 No comments

Since I started tracking my purchases on this blog, October has provided no shortage of TF action in either figure count and/or spending. October 2012 holds the record for highest TF count in a single calendar month (at 24 figures), and October 2014 holds the record for most TF spending in a single calendar month (at $885.90.. yikes!).

In true October fashion, this month is also filled with TF purchases that are way above my average monthly tally. I don’t think October 2015 sets any new personal records, but there are a lot of figures here nonetheless.

  • Combiner Wars Ultra Magnus and Minimus Ambus, amazon.com, $40

  • Combiner Wars Ironhide, Target, $14.99

  • Combiner Wars Prowl, Target, $14.99

  • Combiner Wars Sunstreaker, Target, $14.99

  • Combiner Wars Mirage, Target, $14.99

  • Combiner Wars Cyclonus, amazon.com, $17.89

  • Masterpiece Bumble G-2 Ver., hlj.com, $36.47

  • Perfect Effect Perfect Combiner PC-05 Upgrade Set, tfsource.com, $32.99

  • Before & After Omega Launcher for MP-17 Prowl, tfsource.com, $14.95

  • ToyWorld Devil Star, tfsource.com, $119.99

  • Warbotron Sly Strike, tfsource.com, $75.99

  • Fans Toys Sever, tfsource.com, $179.95

Let’s start with Combiner Wars Ultra Magnus. This is hands down my favorite Ultra Magnus figure of all time! That’s a strong statement, considering I own almost all of them. I like this figure even better than Masterpiece UM, because the CW fig is less blocky and more playable. I have gone into details about this figure back in the post, so I won’t do it again. Minimus Ambus is a character I know nothing about. I believe he’s from the IDW-verse of comics, but I could be totally wrong here. The Minimus Ambus figure in this package is completely forgettable and adds nothing to the Ultra Magnus toy.

Below is pic of my two favorite Ultra Magnus figs of all time.

Combiner Wars continue with more figures that are very minor reworks of what’s already out there. In this month we get Ironhide, Prowl, Sunstreaker and Mirage. Hasbro really knows how to milk us hardcore G1 fans by tweaking existing molds very slightly and then releasing them as popular G1 characters. I probably could have skipped this foursome altogether, but I’m a total sucker for G1 characters from the first 2 seasons. And I needed figures that would make sense to combine with CW Optimus. Ironhide, Sunstreaker, and Mirage are reworks of existing Stunticons (Offroad, Breakdown, and Drag Strip, respectively). Prowl is a rework of Streetwise. I won’t go into detail since the rework here is so minor that we may as well just call them repaints.

Cyclonus is yet another rework in the CW line. But this is one rework that feels truly like a rework, and not a repaint with different colors and a different head. A rework of CW Silverbolt, I really dig this Cyclonus figure. He looks absolutely fabulous in the stunning purple paint. Robot mode is nicely proportioned, and the jet mode looks fast and sleek. In addition to the different head mold, Cyclonus offers different wing molds and different nosecone mode in jet mode. And of all the CW body figures, the Silverbolt/Cyclonus mold offers the best combining mechanism, in both function and appearance. The combined head mold is also different, as it is a good representation of Galvatron and not Superion. It’s too bad Cyclonus’s weapon is an exact repaint of the Silverbolt’s weapon, but in this case that’s a minor nitpick. I highly recommend Cyclonus. There are enough difference here from Silverbolt that it feels like you are buying a brand new figure.

Galvatronus is the name of the combined form when Cyclonus is the body. Supposedly CW Cyclonus has the power to mind control other limb components and have them merge with him. That’s kind of a hokey backstory, but whatever. I wish they made Scourge and Sweeps as limb components to form Galvatronus, which makes way more sense. That’s actually a pretty awesome combination now that I think about it. Maybe some TF modder out there has done this already. Anyways, below is a pic of Galvatronus using the 4 CW limb Autobots acquired this month.

The only official Masterpice figure this month is G-2 Ver Bumble. I already stated many, many times about how I love MP G1 Bumblebee. The G2 Ver of the figure is the exact same mold, except he’s covered with shiny gold paint that I initially thought this would be Goldbug. And instead of the Spike figure, we get a second face plate that more resembles the original G1 toy, and a nice rocket pack that we have seen Sideswipe or Optimus use (it’s unclear to me if Bumblebee ever used the rocket pack). If you already have the first MP Bumble, then it’s not necessary to get this figure. But I did anyway, because I love this mold, the new shiny paint job, and all the extra accessories.

Perfect Effect Perfect Combiner PC-05 Upgrade Set and Before & After Omega Launcher for MP-17 Prowl are two upgrade kits that are similar to the upgrade sets that I bought back in June of this year. Specifically, they are repaints of Perfect Combiner PC-02 and Alpha Launcher for MP-18, respectively. Perfect Combiner PC-05 is meant to be used with Combiner Wars Superion, but technically you can use them with any of the CW figs in combined form. Omega Launcher are non-firing shoulder missile enhancements for MP Prowl. Again, they are exact repaints of what came before, so I won’t go into them too much. Actually, I have not even had the chance to put Omega Launcher on Prowl. But in theory it should look just as awesome as Alpha Launcher on Bluestreak.

Devil Star is ToyWorld’s interpretation of Astrotrain. I love ToyWorld, and I love Astrotrain, which is why I pre-ordered this figure as soon as I learned that they are doing a G1 cartoon accurate version (TW had another version of this figure prior to this called Evila Star, with colors that are more similar to the original Takara toy). I have so much faith in ToyWorld that I knew they would do Triple Changers justice. However, I later watched some reviews of Devil Star (and Evila Star), and learned that this guy is an absolute pain to transform. He’s very much a panel former, which doesn’t bother me that much. But it’s excruciatingly unpleasant to get all the panels to line up in both alt modes. I wanted to cancel the pre-order as soon as I found out, but I was a little too late on the trigger and the pre-order came in before I knew it. So now I have it stuck in my possession. To this day, the figure is brand new, never opened. And I don’t plan to. Maybe one day he will be worth big bucks and I’ll resell it. Devil Star is a limited edition figure. In the pic above, the big box is the figure itself, but the little box on top are these exclusive train tracks that are produced in very limited quantities. I am looking to sell the figure. If you’re reading this and want to make me an offer, contact me.

It took some time, but it finally happened… I got a figure from Warbotron! I wrote about Warbotron more than 2 years ago before this month, and I’m ashamed to say that it took a sale for me to finally buy something from them. My buddy Gemini has the entire Warbotron Combaticon set, and he thinks Sly Strike (aka Swindle) is the best of the bunch. So I have been eyeing Sly Strike for quite some time now. I almost bought the figure at regular price, and I’m glad I didn’t when I saw that TFSource was selling them at $14 off from MSRP. I wasted no time getting one. Gemini did not let me down – Sly Strike is awesome! He comes packaged in robot mode. The body stylings is modeled more after the G1 toy and not the show, but body proportions is definitely updated to modern standards (old G1 body proportions would be awful). His face and head mold looks like it jumped straight out of the G1 cartoon, as its got the famous purple eyes and that discriminant black-market salesman grin that only Swindle can possess. Chest area has a similar purple molding like the G1 toy, though fans have come up with an alternate configuration for the robot mode where the jeep hood area can form over the chest for a more Binaltech/Alternator appearance. The figure is also designed so the wheels over the shoulders and the back area can be transformed differently to suit your taste. Warbotron took more liberties with the alt mode, and in my opinion that’s not necessarily a bad thing. In G1, Swindle transforms into a FMC XR311 combat support vehicle. Munitioner by FansProject uses a military Humvee as the alt mode. Warbotron decided to use a Jeep type vehicle, like the Jeep Wrangler Commando. Some fans may complain this is not G1 enough, but I think it’s a good modern update. The detail, colors, and moldings of the alt mode is terrific as well. Transformation of the figure is fairly straightforward. It’s not overly complicated, but at the same time complex enough to satisfy collectors of 3rd party items. Construction wise, Sly Strike does suffer from some slight tolerance issues, but nothing so glaringly bad that it would distract from the enjoyment of the figure. As for his weapons, the hand held pistol is almost an exact replica of G1, updated to MP scale and modern detail standards. Warbotron took more liberties with the cannon and gave it a translucent pink barrel, and personally I think it’s a nice touch. All in all I highly recommend Sly Strike as the MP scale figure for Swindle. I thought I got a good price for Sly Strike at $75.99, but TFSource has been clearing them out at $66.99 for the past few months! Get them while they last!

Last but certainly not least, we have Sever, Fans Toys’ interpretation of Snarl in MP scale. Sever is the 2nd figure that I got in the Fans Toys line of MP Dinobots. The first one was Scoria (aka Slag). FT released Soar (aka Swoop) in between Scoria and Sever, but I didn’t have a chance to buy that one. Scoria is generally considered a good figure, but he’s not without his faults. He’s got the now famous loose shoulder issues that many fans complain about. Surprisingly, mine is fine in the shoulders (I did buy the repair parts for $4 just in case). However, my Scoria is quite loose in the hips. If I pick up Scoria, the legs would definitely droop down at the crotch, and he won’t be able to hold any cool poses. Part if this is because there’s so much weight in the legs. Other fans have complained about some other minor construction issues. Overall I like Scoria, but he was not the perfect MP dino that I thought he would be, because of the loose hips. So when Sever came out, I was a little nervous that he would also share similar issues. But I chose to buy him anyway, because of the $20 early bird discount. I am happy to report that Sever is absolutely perfect! I detect no construction issues whatsoever. All joints are just the right amount of tightness. Some fans complain the joints are too tight, but I think they’re fine. He can hold some terrific poses, and the figure has enough articulation to take full advantage of the solid construction. In both mode, Sever looks like he jumped straight out of the G1 show. Transformation is also superb. He’s not terribly difficult to transform, but at the same time there’s enough going on in the mechanics that hardcore collectors of this line would not find him too simple. The details on this figure would satisfy even the most picky. The weapons for Sever are awesome as well. They both have light up LED capabilities, though batteries are not included. Check the LED operation of the weapons as soon as you get Sever, as I heard some fans complain about them not working. And if I have to make one small nitpick, it’s that there’s no place for the weapons in Dino mode. But that aside, it really feels like Fans Toys is taking all their lessons learned with Scoria, and they have implemented them in Sever. (They may have done that with Soar as well, as I have heard nothing but praises.) This is 3rd party MP Dinobot at it’s best. To this day I still have Sever out for display, because I like him that much. I highly, highly recommend Sever. Fans Toys have fully restored my faith in their line of MP Dinos. I am now looking forward to getting both Soar and Stomp (aka Sludge), the latter of which came out after Sever.

That ended up being a way longer post than I meant for it to be. October of 2015 had 12 purchases, for a total of 11 figures and 2 upgrade sets. This is the last month in 2015 with a high number of purchases. This month was also a lot of repaints. By my count, only 4 purchases are not repaints or reworks. Even the 2 upgrade sets are repaints. Sometimes I buy TFs purely based on if I like the character; I think in the future I need to be more mold conscious. I am very happy about Sly Strike and Sever, two of the more expensive purchases this month. A bit regretful that I should have cancelled Devil Star when I had the chance.

Til next time… Transform and Roll Out.

Categories: On The Hunt, Pics

Transformers Purchased in September 2015

August 12th, 2016 No comments

September of 2015 is another month of only 2 TFs.

  • Generations Thrilling 30 Acid Storm and Venin, amazon.com, $8.13

  • Robots in Disguise Megatronus, Toys R Us, $14.99

Acid Storm is yet another repaint of the legend class Seeker mold. As if having Starscream, Thundercracker, and Skywarp is not already enough. I could have easily passed on Acid Storm (and you should too if you’re on the fence about buying), but at about $8 I figured why not. Plus I never saw him in store before. I got this through Amazon, but it was a 3rd party seller. The seller was The Chosen Prime. This was my only experience with them. I have heard good things about them, but to this day I have not ever made a direct order. I’m gonna have to try them soon. Anyway, Acid Storm does not feel as sturdy as the others Seekers of this mold. I guess they used the mold one too many times. Venin is an exact of repaint of Waspinator that came with Starscream. I have said before that Arcee and Chromia are the last of the Thrilling 30 figs. I totally forgot about Acid Storm. He really is the last of the Thrililng 30. And now as I write this, I realize he’s packaged a bit different from Starscream. Weird. Compare pics here and here.

The only other purchase this month is Megatronus from Robots in Disguise. Megatronus is definitely one of the better figures from RiD. His robot mode and alt mode looks good. Transformation is fun. Hasbro managed to make him feel solid and robust despite the cheap plastic. His joints are the right amount of tightness for some nice poses. I got here the Toys R Us exclusive version, which hit stores first. This version has the head of Megatronus in some kind of battle helmet. A mass retail version would come out later (which I also have). Overall I highly recommend this figure. I think he’s my 2nd favorite of the RiD figs, right behind Drift.

Below are some pics of the 2 figs.

2 figs last month, and 2 figs this month. That is very unlike me. But there was a good reason. I went to Europe at the end of September of 2015. I will make a post soon about my TF hunting experience there, much like I did for when I went to Shanghai. Til next time… Transform and Roll Out!

Categories: On The Hunt, Pics

Transformers Purchased in August 2015

August 5th, 2016 No comments

August of 2015 continues with Combiner Wars. Both figs this month come from CW, though neither one realistically combines. More on that later.

  • Combiner Wars Rodimus, Target, $9.78

  • Combiner Wars Thundercracker, amazon.com, $40.58

CW legend class Rodimus is a repaint of Blackjack, with your classic Hot Rod color scheme and a new head mold. Technically he does combine to be the chest plate, when Optimus or Motormaster is used as the body component. But this feature feels tacked-on like an afterthought or gimmick. I mentioned before that Blackjack has got some poorly fitted connection ports when trying to be attached as the chest plate, and Rodimus shares this same problem. Shame to see that Hasbro did not fix this. The weapon/wing accessory has a right place when Rodimus is in alt mode or chest plate mode. But in robot mode he can only hold the weapon, and not have them attached to his back as wings to have that classic Hot Rod look. For Blackjack this is a non-issue, but I expected more for Rodimus. I can only recommend this figure if you’re a completist or if you are dying of TF thirst. Pass otherwise.

This is the 2nd Thundercracker to be released in the CW line. The first one was a legend size figure. This figure is Leader class, and he is a minor rework of the awesome Jetfire from Generations Thrilling 30. I like this figure. He feels different enough from Jetfire to warrant a re-release of this mold. In addition to the different color scheme and head mold, Thundercracker has a different chest mold, different shoulder molds, and differently styled wings that resemble more like an F-15. He also has extra twin guns for the wings, instead of the the Jetfire thrusters pack. I love the sleek blue jet that is Thundercracker in alt mode. The one knock against this figure is the size. At Leader class, Thundercracker is the same size as Ultra Magnus, Megatron, and Jetfire, and that is just is too big to scale well with the rest of your CHUG lineup. A Voyager class Seeker mold would work better here, such as Cyber Battalion Starscream.

August was a light month in terms of TFs. More will come soon… Transform and Roll Out.

Categories: On The Hunt, Pics