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Archive for October, 2018

Cybertronian Halloween 2018

October 31st, 2018 No comments

Halloween is here again! And you know what that means here at TFMatrix! The new orange TFs make their special appearance for a group photo with my plush pumpkin.

I always try to use orange TFs that I haven’t used before. And seriously, there has not been that many orange TFs since last time. I only found 4 figs that I would qualify as orange. And 3 of them are not even new, they were just forgotten or left out in previous Halloween posts. But better late than never. They now appear for 2018.

From left to right:

Here are links to previous Halloween posts.
Cybertronian Halloween 2016
Cybertronian Halloween 2014
Cybertronian Halloween 2012 (scroll down to last pic)

For the robots in disguise, everyday is Halloween! Transform and Roll Out!
 

Categories: Pics

Masterpiece Optimus Prime and Autobots, Team 3

October 23rd, 2018 No comments

The Masterpiece Autobots are back to kick more Decepticon Ass. This time, Optimus returns with some of my favs from Season 2, all in MP glory!

This is Team 3. Team 1 and 2 were featured here.

First figure released in this team is obviously Optimus Prime, back in 2012. The most recent figure acquired here is Richthofen. It’s amazing how far MP Transformers, both official and third party, have come.

The most played-with pieces here are Optimus and Red Alert, simply because they have been around the longest. The least played-with are Smokescreen and Inferno.

This team is ready to man-handle some Decepticons, or maybe I should say robot-handle.

Transform and Roll Out.
 

Categories: Pics

Power of the Primes Terrorcons

October 15th, 2018 No comments

First came Combiner Wars. Then came Titans Return. Now we are at Power of the Primes, the third and final installment of this toyline. Collectively, the three arcs form Transformers: Prime Wars Trilogy.

There is a backstory to each of the toy arcs. The link above to the Wiki page explains more. Toy-wise, Combiner Wars focused on Combiners (duh) and Titans Return put an emphasis on Headmasters (called Titan Masters). Power of the Primes kind of merged both of these gimmicks. This toyline features Prime Masters that are similar to Headmasters, but at the same time many combining figures are also introduced.

The Terrorcons are one of the last Combiner Team that Hasbro would release as part of the Prime Wars Trilogy. I was kind of waiting for HasTak to release this group, since they did release their opposite number, the Technobots. And it was worth the wait! HasTak has obviously learned their lessons from doing all the previous Combiner Teams. In my opinion, the Terrorcons are the best Combiner Team that uses the standard Combiner Wars mold (Aerialbots, Combatcions, etc). I say this for many reasons. Let’s start the review.

Each Terrorcon is sold separately. They are packed in their robot modes.

Hun-Gurrr

The awesomeness starts with Hun-Gurrr. This is the leader of the Terrorcons, and he forms the body. Hun-Gurrr is famous for saying “Hun-Gurrr hungry” in the G1 episode “Money is Everything”. I never tire of hearing him say that. So dumb yet so direct.

Hun-Gurrr is a heavily modified remold of Combiner Wars Silverbolt (who was also reworked into Cyclonus and Scattershot). But seriously, so much is reworked for Hun-Gurrr that you can argue this is a unique mold of it’s own. All the jet pieces you would find in any of the previous molds are gone, and are now replaced with new monster bits. He gets a new head mold for his robot form, and also a new head for the combined mode.

Both modes look good. Transformation from robot to two-headed monster is on the simple side, but that’s always been the case with Silverbolt and any of the derivatives. The main difference here is that the feet and legs form the twin heads with long necks. So instead of tucking them under where the wings would normally go, you leave them out and about to gobble up unfortunate Autobots.

I have said before that of all the Prime Wars Trilogy combining body figs, the Silverbolt mold provides the best stability in combined form. That is still true here. But Hun-gurrr ups the game even more. Everything properly tabs into place. I’ll go into this more later in the combined form. But in its individual modes, Hun-Gurrr provides tab connectors where there should be. Not only does this provide stability, it’s a confirmation that you’re doing the transformation right. Hun-Gurrr is hands down the best Prime Wars combiner body fig produced, because all 3 modes work.

Blot

Blot is the stinky foot soldier of the group that the other Terrorcons try their best to avoid. He transforms into some kind of big purple bipedal type monster.

Of all the PotP Terrorcon limbs, Blot is my favorite. For starters, I think he has the best looking robot mode, because all the monster bits are best hidden when compared to the other limb Terrorcons. I also like his color scheme of purple and dark blue.

All the limb components share similar transformation motifs. But within that same framework, Blot is the most unique. His legs fold backwards to form the monster back, instead of simply collapsing into the body. I love his fist-to-claw transformation. You flip the fist backwards, and that would rotate out the middle claw. Very very cool. In robot form, the monster head is neatly hidden on the robot back. For transformation to alt mode, the monster head comes up and out, while the robot head goes underneath.

I think this is the most unique looking monster in the group, so I like him. The placement of the over-the-shoulder weapon in monster form is also G1 accurate.

Cutthroat

Cutthroat is the bloodthirsty one of group, with a crazy and barbaric fighting style that even other Decepticons find disturbing. As a sidebar, why is it that every beast subgroup has to have a flyer? Dinobots have Swoop. Predacons have Divebomb. Pretender Monsters have Wildfly. And Terrorcons have Cutthroat. In sitcoms and dramedies of eras gone by, there is often a token black guy. Cutthroat is the token flyer.

PotP Cutthroat is an ok fig. I say that because he could have been great, if not for one flaw. And it’s that the bird head piece (and sometimes also the bird mouth piece) will unavoidably come off during transformation. I have transformed this guy back and forth 5 or 6 times now, and that head will come off each time. This is because the side pegs that hold in the bird head is super loose, while the assembly that the head sits on is super tight to rotate up or down during transformation. I have come to just take the bird head off during transformation, then re-attach.

Other than this flaw, the fig is not too shabby. The face sculpt is amazing. I think this is pretty accurate to either the G1 animation model or the G1 toy box art. I also think this face sculpt would work great for Thunderwing, if they wanted to make a figure of him in PotP. The rest of the fig in robot form is well-proportioned.

Transformation to bird beast is fairly obvious, so I won’t describe it. Again, the bird head coming off is an issue. Other than that the fig is solid. The wings transform well and has no tolerance issues.

There’s nothing too surprising about the alt mode. It’s pretty much the kind of bird monster alt mode you would expect from a $15 toy. It’s functional and it works.

Rippersnapper

Rippersnapper is some kind of amphibious mechanical fish monster with arms and legs. His Tech Spec Bio mentions a massive inferiority complex, but I’m quite sure neither the cartoon nor the comics went into that.

I like PotP Rippersnapper. Overall he reminds me of Blot, but he’s different enough to not feel like buying a repeat figure just to complete the group. Both his modes seem very G1 accurate, and I like his overall color scheme. In robot mode, I like how he still has the monster claws on the back of his hands. Very Wolverine like.

There are no surprises to the transformation. If you look at both modes and mentally imagine how the transformation would be, that’s how it is. The only unexpected piece is the monster’s tail that hides into the legs, which needs to be flipped out for alt mode. An obvious transformation does not mean that it’s not fun or it’s poorly done. Rippersnapper is a well constructed figure. Both modes look good.

I really like the design of Rippersnapper’s alt mode. I think out of all the limb components, this is my favorite monster in terms of appearance. The twin guns on the monster shoulders is very G1 accurate. The mouthpiece can be opened, and unlike Cutthroat, it does not constantly fall off. The monster mode is surprisingly articulate. Balancing the monster on two legs is not hard at all.

Overall, Rippersnapper is another fine addition to the Terrorcon group.

Sinnertwin

Sinnertwin is the second two-headed monster of the group. His Tech Spec bio mentions he likes to patrol the Terrorcons’ lair in the hopes of finding something unwelcome then killing them. Feels like another garden variety Decepticon. Strangely, nothing is mentioned in the Tech Spec Bio about the twin heads. I guess after Hun-Gurrr and Twinferno, another two-headed monster is not such a big deal.

PotP Sinnertwin is okay all around. He’s not bad, but not great either. This wacky green and yellow color combo warrants a visit by the Cybertron fashion police. In robot mode, there’s not much that stands out for Sinnertwin, other than the colors.

Transformation to monster mode is also pretty straightforward. However, he doesn’t seem to be constructed as well as the other Terrorcons. Blot and Rippersnapper are constructed well. Cutthroat has the one construction flaw of the bird head, but other than that, the rest of the fig is solid. Sinnertwin feels slightly off, for the entire fig. What I mean is that there are parts that should snap together or tab into place, but the pieces fall just short of coming in sync with each other. On my copy, the monster head won’t completely rotate and snap into place on the body, the legs don’t completely snap together, the tail has the same problem, and I can’t seem to fully rotate the robot legs to align completely with the body. There are tabs and grooves to help you locate where the pieces should go, but I can’t seem to fully get them there. Overall it doesn’t impair the functionality of the figure, but it does present itself as a minor distraction.

In alt mode, Sinnertwin is another monster with a cool design. I like the twin heads. They each have a working jaw, though getting them open takes some prying. The color scheme in monster mode works better than it does in robot mode.

Most buyers of PotP Terrorcons are looking to buy the whole set. But if for some reason you’re not, and is making purchase decisions on the individual merit of each figure, then I would recommend Sinnertwin as the last one to buy. The minor build issues irk me, and that color scheme is not doing it for me.

Below I present all the Terrorcons in their hideous monster forms.

Terrorcons, transform and merge into… Abominus!

Abominus

This is one awesome looking Combiner. Check it out!

It all starts with Hun-Gurrr. He is based off of the best Prime Wars Trilogy combiner body, so the combined form has the best stability. Not only that, HasTak improved on it by providing proper tabbing for all pieces of the body transformation. This gives the combined body extra support. The result is a stable Abominus that stands up well in the classic A-stance. Not only that, he is actually somewhat posebale in action stances.

Transformation to Abominus requires no extra pieces, other than the hands and feet. Hun-Gurrr comes with the two feet pieces, or you can elect to use the individual combiner pieces that comes with the limb Terrorcons. For the hands you must use the individual combiner pieces. The Abominus chest shield is built into the Hun-Gurrr figure, and will be wholly formed through the transformation to body mode. I cannot commend HasTak enough for the engineering designs on Hun-Gurrr.

The limb components are on par with other Prime Wars Combiners that have come before it, but the superior body figure means they can be better connected in the combined form. Also, there are no tolerance issues for attaching the hands or feet to the limb Terrorcons, as there were for some of the previous Combiners.

Abominus has got a great new head mold that pays homage to the G1 figure.

If you can only get one Combiner Team in the Prime Wars Trilogy, the Terrorcons are the team to get! This is the final evolution of the Prime Wars Combiners, and HasTak has corrected many of the flaws that plagued the previous Combiner teams. The Terrorcons may not be the most recognizable of the G1 Combiners, but if you’re reading this blog, the Terrorcons must mean something to you.

Terrorcons… Transform and Roll Out!
 

Categories: Pics, Toy Reviews

TF Matrix Nine Year Anniversary

October 9th, 2018 No comments

Well, this blog is still going. I’m not getting the hits that I used to. But keeping this blog alive has got to count for something.

9 Years

Looking at the stats, it looks like everything went down hill after The Last Knight. Can’t say I blame the fans. I am betting Hasbro and Paramount are seeing similar numbers when they do their analysis, just on a much larger scale. Maybe that’s why they are finally ok with letting Michael Bay go. Perhaps that’s the silver lining here.

Though I’m not gonna blame everything on The Last Knight. I will admit I’m not spending enough time on this blog. I have big things planned, but until then… Transform and Roll Out.

 

Categories: Uncategorized

Masterpiece Style Red Jets

October 2nd, 2018 No comments

I got a bunch of third party Masterpiece-styled red jets lying here and there, so I thought I compile them and make a post. Here they are.

From left to right: ToyWorld Assault, Zeta Toys Flyfire, DX9 Richthofen

Assault

This 3P homage to Thrust by ToyWorld is an incredible figure. I kinda went into their awesomeness back in this post, see that for all the details. Lots of TransFans give these TW Coneheads a hard time, and I say they’re totally trippin’. Don’t believe them. Subscribe to my TF authority and go get these while you can.

Flyfire

Newcomer Zeta Toys is responsible for this 3P MP homage to Aerialbot Fireflight. Fireflight is probably my least favorite Aerialbot. His alt mode as a F-4 Phantom is one of the worst of the jets. And he has no personality whatsoever. Honestly, I can’t really say anything else about him. Other than he was mysteriously missing when all the other Aerialbots were fighting that giant purple robot griffin in “Aerial Assault“, one of my favorite eps from G1.

Zeta Toys is supposedly a split-off from ToyWorld. Well, split-off may be too professional a term here. What I heard is that the design engineers at ToyWorld didn’t feel they were getting what they deserved and had a falling out with management. So they took their designs, left ToyWorld, and formed their own company. The result is Zeta Toys. This is evidenced by how some products overlap between ToyWorld and Zeta.

Anyway, back to Flyfire. I like the figure. He looks good in both alt mode and robot mode. The engineering is top-notch, and I wouldn’t have expected any less from the designers behind some of ToyWorld’s best offerings. The transformation is satisfying, striking a good balance between complexity and fun. Flyfire is Zeta’s second Aerialbot, the first being Airstrike (Air Raid). I liked Airstrike as well, but there were some minor construction hiccups here and there. Zeta has obviously learned their lesson from that first offering, and as the sophomore figure Flyfire is much more polished. At only $65.99, Zeta is making these extremely affordable. However, that does come at a price. The materials used for both Flyfire and Airstrike feels incredibly cheap for something that is supposed to be MP quality. That’s pretty much my only complaint about these figures. Next to TW Assault, the cheap plastic become more than obvious. I wonder if TW planned to make these with superior materials, but now we’ll never know. But as it is, Flyfire is still a recommended figure. These are currently the best MP styled Aerialbots you can buy on the market.

ZT is getting quite clever with the naming. Hasbro can no longer use the term Fireflight, so modern productions of this character go with Firefly. ZT just reversed it and call it Flyfire. What will these crazy Chinese engineers think of next.

Richthofen

The last of these 3P MP red jets is DX9 Richthofen. I had to Google what is Richthofen. Apparently that was the last name of the Red Baron. Anyway, this figure is obviously Powerglide. And what a figure this is. I have been really enjoying all my purchases from DX9, such as Invisible, Carry, and Gewalt. I hold DX9 in the highest regard possible, and they did not let me down with Richthofen. This is an amazing figure.

Both alt mode and robot mode looks good. DX9 really studied the G1 animation models and produced a figure faithful to the show’s appearance. Unlike Flyfire, nice quality materials are used for the figure. Construction of Richthofen is superb. In fact, it may be too good, as all the joints are super tight. My hands hurt when trying to transform this guy. This may be due to the fact that some productions runs of Richthofen had a manufacturing problem, where there was a loose tail fin. DX9 corrected this in later runs, but the result is all the joints became way too tight. I got one such figure. Still, I rather have joints that are too tight than too loose.

Other than the tight joints, Richthofen is a blast to transform. It’s just the right amount of complexity and challenge. I’m hoping the joints will soften after a few transformations. He even comes with a Astoria figure, from “The Girl Who Loved Powerglide“. And when you open his chest panel, there is a heart shaped mold engraved there. Gotta give DX9 points for show accuracy, as cheesy as this feature is.

Richthofen has a place in your collection.

Transform and Roll Out.
 

Categories: Pics