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Transform and Rollout TR-01 Masterpiece Jazz

June 3rd, 2015 No comments

This news came out of nowhere! A brand new 3rd party calling themselves Transform and Rollout is doing their version of not Jazz. Early pics are looking pretty awesome. This figure is sure shaping up to have enough style and flair to be everyone’s favorite special ops agent.

The figure is supposedly MP size. Some thoughts as I look at these early pics:

  • You can pose not Jazz with the doors out on the back (like the toy) or with no doors (like the G1 TV show), very cool
  • Right hand grappling hook can be attached
  • Speakers attachment is included, shown attached in alt mode, not sure if can be used in robot mode
  • Rifle looks very G1 accurate
  • Missile launcher not shown, wonder if it will be included
  • Overall appearance is very G1 accurate
  • Spoiler says “Master”, a reference to not “Meister”

I’m getting pretty excited over this piece. However this is a new 3rd party (in a world of already saturated 3rd parties) and this is their first entry. Their construction quality is a big mystery at this point. How this fig will turn out, your guess is as good as mine. MSPR is $89.99. All your favorite custom retailers are taking pres for this fig.

Not Jazz… Transform and Roll Out!

Categories: Pics, TF News

Titan Class Devastator – Combiner Wars

February 17th, 2015 No comments

Quick follow up to my last post. There are now official pics to Titan Class Devastator. I am way more interested in this than I was before!

Constructicons… Transform and Roll Out!

Categories: Pics, TF News

Titan Class Devastator

February 9th, 2015 No comments

OMG! I did not see this coming from Hasbro! After two modern updates of Devastator by third party companies, Hasbro is finally releasing their own. Check out this pic below, from what I think is a toy fair in Germany.

Supposedly each individual fig is gonna be Voyager size, and the Devastator combined will be Titan class! That’s Metroplex size! Though early rumors seem to indicate that the engineering will be quite basic. I speculate Hasbro has finally decided to do something about 3rd Parties making money off their property.

I’m debating if I want more Constructicons in my collection. After wonderful interpretations by both TFC Toys and MakeToys, I’m not sure I need another Devastator. Knowing me, I will get this if the price is right.

Prepare for Extermination! Transform and Roll Out!

Categories: Pics, TF News

Transformers Robots in Disguise

October 29th, 2014 No comments

The next Transformers TV show is Transformers: Robots in Disguise. If memory serves, Transformers Animated first came out in 2008, and Transformers Prime was released in late 2011. So a new show now follows this trend where Hasbro presents a TF reboot once every three or so years.

The season 1 trailer appears below.

At first glance the character designs look awfully close to TF Animated. Though looking at it closer, you also see hints of TF Prime. The appearance of Optimus and Bumblebee always seem to include a few designs from the immediate past. At this point, I don’t know if I like these designs. But I know I’ve said that about both TF Animated and TF Prime, and over time they kinda grew on me. Maybe I just need time to digest this new look.

The animation style appears to be cel shading. So I guess the animators are using 3D models, but rendered to have a more cartoony look. Kind of a mix between 2D and 3D. This could work. Another example of a fusion between Animated (2D) and Prime (3D).

Hasbro seems to be continuing the trend of having a small team for the Autobots, like in Animated and Prime. There’s Optimus, who acts like his usual Peter Cullen self. No surprises here. Then there’s Bumblebee. This Bee is back to being able to talk, which I like. The movie blips Bee never really did it for me. His characterization is also reminiscent of G1, but physically he appears tougher. Next in the group is Sideswipe (the red one). His persona reminds me of Hot Rod. I guess he’s the bad boy of the group. Strongarm is the tough and no non-sense fembot of the bunch. She acts like Arcee but has the looks of a female Wheeljack. The Dino muscle on the team is Grimlock, though his colors and behavior more closely resembles Bulkhead. Rounding out the team is Fixit, the small and spunky orange bot who appears to handle medic duties. I dunno, right now I feel like this cast is ripped straight out of a stock character manual. Hopefully I’ll find them more interesting once the show gets going.

Of course with every new show, Hasbro will be making more toys. I’m not aware of any toy info at the moment, but you can bet your boron compressor they will be making their way to store shelves in 2015.

Robots in Disguise… Transform and Roll Out!

Categories: TF News

Warbotron Combaticons and Bruticus

August 17th, 2013 2 comments

OMG! Right as I was about to leave work on Wed, Gemini sends me a link to some new unlicensed Transformers made by a new unheard of third party! Apparently this new company is called Warbotron. And their first entry is a combiner set homage to G1 Combatcions that will merge into Bruticus! This set must be seen to be believed! Feast your optics on these pics now!!!

News of this set seems to have come out of nowhere. Warbotron? That appears to be the name of the third party company, and not the fictional name of these Combaticon homages. This set has that TFC look all over it, and the size of the figures resemble that of TFC Hercules.

The trend these days is that multiple 3rd party companies are each doing their own interpretation of a G1 combiner team. TFC Toys and Maketoys each took a stab at the Constructicons (Hercules and Giant, respectively), and they both turned out pretty good. Four different companies are doing the Predacons (Unique Toys, Mastermind Creations, TFC, and another newcomer that I can’t remember).

FansProject started this whole trend with their Crossfire upgrade of Bruticus Maximus. I’m glad someone else is now taking a 2nd stab at upgrading my beloved Combaticons in this modern day and age. Don’t get me wrong, I love FansProject Crossfire 02. But it always irked me that only Blastoff and Swindle are new molds, and the rest are Energon molds that are not G1 enough for me. And while they do scale nicely with other CHUG figures individually, recent 3rd party combiners have become bigger (like TFC Hercules), making Crossfire’s combined form appear small by comparison. This new Warbotron set will address both these issues. Check out the pics above with T-Bone. This set will be massive!

Below are some images of these guys individually in robot mode!

Here is someone’s photoshop estimation of how this set will scale with other 3rd party items.

I’m probably gushing way too much here, but I can’t help but be super impressed. I love how they released pics of their products all at once, instead of teasing us with silhouettes. Other fans have pointed out that this set is very G1 accurate, and that other 3rd parties (like FP, Maketoys, and TFC) have been taking too many liberties in their designs.

Current estimation for a pre-order date is Nov. No price estimation is available at this time.

I don’t know how many times I have said this on my blog now, but the Combaticons are my favorite combiner team. FP made my dreams come true with their Crossfire set. Now someone else is making that dream even sweeter!

You can be sure I will keep my optics open for any new developments on this required purchase. Warbotron… Transform and Roll Out!

Categories: Pics, TF News

Masterpiece MP-20 Wheeljack and MP-21 Bumblebee

June 23rd, 2013 5 comments

This news kind of came out of nowhere. I sort of heard from around the web that Takara are planning new Masterpiece TFs. But details were super vague. Then all of a sudden, I think on Thur this past week, I get the weekly BBTS newsletter. The first pre-orders on the list were MP-20 Wheeljack and MP-21 Bumblebee! I couldn’t believe my eyes! More MPs of G1 figures are always a plus in my book. No pics yet, but nonetheless this is still awesome news!

I never had the Wheeljack G1 toy growing up. I didn’t know anyone else that had it either. And I’m not sure if he was ever re-issued. The point I’m trying to make is I have never seen the G1 mold. But I’ve seen pics and the Wheeljack robot mode is unflattering to say the least. I’m positive the MP-20 will correct this issue. It will also be very interesting to see a Lancia faithfully reproduced in this day and age.

As for MP-21 Bumblebee, it has gotta be the original Beetle. I never really thought Takara will attempt this. In the mid-2000s it was well known that VW wanted very little of their brand to be associated with Transformers products. I guess they have since changed their mind. If this figure is anywhere near the quality of recent MPs, this may very well be the best Bumblebee ever. I’m also wondering how this figure will scale with other MPs. As Bumblebee he should be smaller (like the MP cassettes, though not that small). But he’s got the same pre-order price as Wheeljack, so he may be the same size as the other cars. I can’t wait to see how this will develop.

Oh yeah, along with these two, there will also be MP-12G, which is G2 MP Sideswipe. Knowing me, I will get this too, because I have the original G2 Sideswipe. A very blurry pic appears below. Apparently MP-12G gets some new weapons and accessories.

It is a dream come true to see some of my favorite Autobot cars reproduced in the MP line. We already have Sideswipe (MP-12) and Red Alert (MP-14). Prowl (MP-17), Bluestreak (MP-18), and Smokescreen (MP-19) are next. Now we’re getting Wheeljack and Bumblebee! It is good to be a TransFan!

Back in 2006 when Transformers Classics first came out (which eventually expanded into Universe, Henkei, Generations, and whatever else Hasbro decides to call them), Gemini and I were thinking it would be so cool if they updated all early G1 Autobots and Decepticons in this line. That dream pretty much came true. Now we’re thinking the same about the MP line. It seems like we’re well on our way there… could this become reality as well? Only time will tell… transform and roll out.

Categories: TF News

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

Masterpiece Prowl and Bluestreak Images

April 28th, 2013 No comments

Title says it all. These pics are nothing new by now, but I’m so looking forward so these upcoming MP figs that I have to make a post. I first reported news of these figures back in this post. Looks like MP-17 will be Prowl, and MP-18 will be Bluestreak and not Smokescreen like I reported. It makes sense to do these 2 first, since Smokescreen didn’t come around til season 2 in G1.

I’m wondering if they will call MP-18 as Bluestreak or Silverstreak. Though I don’t really care as long as he gets released. Transform and Roll Out.

Categories: Pics, TF News

FansProject Stunticons

March 25th, 2013 4 comments

This week I will be receiving 2 figures from FansProject, T-Bone and Car Crash. These are obvious homages to G1 Stunticons. Growing up, this was the favorite combiner team for most of my friends. And for good reasons. They are all high-end sports cars (with the exception of Motormaster). They are all kick-ass rebels, even choosing to ignore Megatron’s orders from time to time. And Menasor could possibly be the most powerful combiner in G1. In the cartoons, I don’t remember him losing any fights to any of the other combined gestalts.

Since Hasbro will not give us proper CHUG remakes to this fan-favorite combiner team, it is once again up to FansProject to step up to the plate. I will be receiving T-Bone (Wildrider) and Car Crash (Breakdown) very soon, and I look forward to checking them out for myself. I’ll make another post when I get them, but for now, check out these pics below.

On completely unrelated news, March Madness 2013 is currently going on. I watched as many games as I could have starting this past Thursday. First 2 rounds are now over (I know, they renamed it Round 2 and 3, but these new names just don’t work for me) and we’re down to the Sweet 16 as I write this. The obvious Cinderella that is getting everyone’s attention is FGCU, or Florida Gulf Coast Univerisy, a 15 seed! Has a 15 seed ever made it to the Sweet 16? I honestly don’t know. They took down goliath Georgetown and up and coming San Diego St to get here. Safe to say that no one’s heard of FGCU til this weekend, not counting the locals. Congrats to the Eagles!

But on a more personal note, my bracket is still in good shape! For my Final Four, I picked Louisville, Ohio St, Florida, and Indiana. All 4 schools are still alive in the tournament. I can’t even remember the last time I did this well. Last year, I picked Missouri to win it all and they were bounced in the 1st Round! The year before that, I can’t remember who I picked, but I remember not doing too well. The thing that sticks out from that year is UCLA winning in Round 1 against Michigan St, but then losing to Florida in Round 2. I remember following the scores on my phone for that Florida game. The Ex wanted to go to Whole Foods so we did. I let her do her thing while I just followed the game on my phone. UCLA did even worse this year by making a Round 1 Exit. That hurts my Bruin pride, but I didn’t project them to go far anyway, since Florida was waiting for them in Round 2. And besides, I got a real shot at winning the office pool. Currently I’m in 2nd place, but I have the most potential points left. I won’t say what is my pick to win it all in fear of jinxing it, but right now they sure look like the team to beat.

Long live March Madness! Transform and Roll Out!

Categories: Pics, TF News

Masterpiece MP-17 Prowl and MP-18 Smokescreen!

January 27th, 2013 7 comments

This is so good it’s illegal to not share and post! The next two Autobot Masterpiece figures are Prowl and Smokescreen, MP-17 and MP-18 respectively. I was thoroughly impressed with Sideswipe and Red Alert. And immediately I wanted more MPs of the Autobot cars. That dream is coming true is summer! June 2013 to be precise. Let’s hope that release date does not change. Or better yet, get pushed ahead of schedule!

For full details, click on the banner above. Unfortunately, there are no pics at this time. Hopefully some will surface soon.

Transform and Roll Out!

Categories: TF News