DX9 Gewalt Quick Review

December 6th, 2020 No comments

Last week I featured my Blitzwing collection. It started with the robot modes, then jet modes, and ended with tank modes. Thanksgiving week 2020 became Blitzwing week.

I transformed DX9 Gewalt from robot to jet to tank in that span, taking many pictures along the way. This transformation fulfilled one of the goals in my self-imposed Shelter-From-Home Transformer Challenge. (Sidebar: With local COVID cases rising, State authorities where I am have recently imposed an even more strict stay-at-home order. There is a curfew. Some authorities are calling this a lockdown.) And since I just transformed this guy through all his modes, a quick review of this excellent figure is in order.

Let’s start with the box and the goodies packed inside.

Gewalt in the box, packed in tank mode. Notice he comes with his purple rifle and a purple translucent sword. The black accessory is used to help budge certain tight connections during transformation.

Here are Gewalt’s other items and accessories: the instruction book, a bio card, an extra yelling face, one replacement part that looks like it’s for the thighs (not sure if this is for Gewalt or something else), and the rear horizontal stabilizer wings for jet mode. They can be attached in tank mode, but mine came unattached. More on that later.

Also included is this nice poster of Gewalt.

Tank Mode

I always start the review with whatever mode the figure comes packed in.

This is a nice looking tank. Though right off the bat I will say that this looks more like a Cybertronian tank, and not an Earth M1 Abrams tank. The turret and tank treads look Earth mode enough, but the rest of it, not so much. Also, the turret appears too small in relation to the rest of the tank.

The turret can be angled up. Now I just need a MP style Kup to re-create that famous scene from the G1 Movie.

There does seem to be a bit too much purple on Gewalt in tank mode. See those pegs that stick out at the back, near the bottom? That’s where one of the rear wing stabilizers would go, if it was still attached in this mode. The instructions illustrate the entire transformation process with these wings not attached across all 3 modes. But there is room for them, they can be attached and folded in tank mode.

Gewalt directly from the front. Reminds me of the opening sequence in G1 Season 3. Notice you can see where the head is. I know this bothers a lot of fans, but in my opinion it’s not a big deal. More on this later.

Gewalt directly from the back.

A look at the bottom. Most of it cleans up quite well. Again, the one oddity is where the head is situated. I know this appears to be a deal breaker for many fans. But I don’t find myself compulsively looking there, so it’s not a problem for me.

Now for some size comparisons in tank mode.

With MP Thundercracker. These 2 scale quite well in this mode.

With other Blitzwings.

Overall, Gewalt’s tank mode is decent. Personally I think it’s the weakest of the 3 modes, but it’s not bad by any means. My wife actually likes this mode the best.

Jet Mode

Next up is the jet mode. Blitzwing is supposed to be a MiG. In G1, he looks nothing like a MiG, with those thick bulky wings that obviously forms a tank. Gewalt improves upon that in spades.

Now that is a jet that looks way more like a MiG! In G1, I always assumed that Blitzwing’s jet mode is a Cybertronian jet, like Jetfire. I didn’t find out that he’s supposed to be a MiG until the 2000s. With this jet mode, no one will make that mistake.

Another angle of this awesome jet. I love this purple. Totally G1 accurate and looks great too!

An angle from the back. Notice I put on the rear wing stabilizers. You could leave them on for robot mode (more on this later).

Great skinny profile of the jet, looking directly from the front.

Looking directly from the back. Nice looking thrusters.

View from the bottom. Gewalt cleans up quite nicely in jet mode. In this pic the landing gears are retracted, but they easily come out. The tank treads clearly can be seen underneath the wings in this pic. It’s mostly near the body of the jet, so it does not bug me, as the wings themselves are still quite thin.

It is worth noting at this point that the tank turret and main cannon is not seen at the bottom of the jet, like G1 Blitzwing in both the toy and the animation model. Gewalt folds the tank turret into the legs, which forms the back jet area. I think this is pretty cool. But the main cannon has nowhere to go in jet mode. It has to be removed entirely. I wish DX9 made it so the cannon can at least be pegged at the bottom of the jet somewhere. Gewalt’s parts-forming with the main cannon does bother me a bit. I do wish they came up with a way to incorporate it in all 3 modes.

Now for some size comparison pics in jet mode.

With other G1 style Blitzwings.

With MP Thundercracker. These 2 scale amazingly with each other in jet mode. In Transformers: Infiltration, there is a nice overhead panel of Blitzwing and Skywarp in jet mode. Blitzwing is just a tad bigger, like you see in the pic above with Thundercracker. DX9 really got this scale right. Gewalt’s jet mode appearance also looks strikingly similar to how Blitzwing is drawn in Infiltration. Perhaps this was the source material for DX9.

Here I have KFC Kingzilla (aka Snapdragon) with Gewalt in their jet modes. Two big and beefy triple-changers side by side.

Of the 3 modes, Gewalt’s jet mode is my favorite. Now on to the robot mode.

I love the robot mode. This is Blitzwing as he appears in G1. I compared this with some G1 animation models. There are differences here and there, but not nearly enough to say that this is G1 inaccurate. I do wish the nosecone bits that appears on the sides of the waist can be hidden for a cleaner look, but overall it doesn’t bother me too much.

Looking at the side profile, there’s a bit of backpack kibble. But not too bad. In G1 Blitzwing is drawn with a bit of a backpack. Notice the rear wing stabilizers are attached on the legs, on the sides toward the bottom. Again, instructions show them as unattached. This area does look cleaner when the the rear stabilizers are not there. Perhaps that’s why DX9 made them removable. I personally like having all pieces in all modes.

View of the back. Notice the main cannon that is blatantly absent in jet mode can be pegged on to the back. This is too iconic for Blitzwing. Even DX9 would not mess with that look. I don’t really like the look of the heels. They are obviously half of the thrusters on each side. But this is only visible from the back, and in honesty I’m not gonna look there very much. So this gets a pass.

Very nice face sculpt that is unmistakably Blitzwing.

Now for some action poses. Gewalt is kind of a big, bulky figure. There’s also enough kibble on the back and shoulders to limit overall movement. So the poseability gets an average score, at best.

For robot size comparison, Gewalt appears with MP Megatron below.

At first glance it would appear that Gewalt is taller, but Megs is actually taller if you look at where the top of their heads are. Still, I feel Gewalt in robot mode is a bit big to properly scale with official MPs. Blitzwing is good size, but he should still be noticeably shorter than Megatron.

As a whole, I love the Gewalt figure. He’s got his shortcomings, which I outlined throughout this post. If you’re looking for the executive summary of what those are, it’s the mediocre tank mode, parts-forming with the main cannon, limited robot articulation, and robot mode scale issues. But the figure has way more positives. The jet mode is awesome, and the robot mode is solid. He’s very well built. All joints are super tight, some may say even too tight. Transformation is definitely involved, but not impossible.

As of this writing, if you’re looking for a MP style Blitzwing, you can’t go wrong with Gewalt. The only other option available I know of is Ditka by KFC. Ditka is more G1 than Gewalt, but in my opinion it’s too G1. The figure kept a lot of Blitzwing’s G1 weaknesses that should have been improved upon. Also, Ditka has got construction issues galore that I wouldn’t touch it with a 10 foot pole. Fans Toys has their Blitzwing coming, called Berserk. This figure has been on pre-order for nearly 3 years now, and so far all we’ve seen are black-and-white renders. The renders look terrific. But seriously… is this figure still happening? Your guess is as good as mine.

If you want a MP Blitzwing today, get Gewalt. It’s that simple.

Transform and Roll Out.
 

Categories: Pics, Toy Reviews

My Blitzwing Collection, Tank Mode

November 25th, 2020 No comments

And as the third part in this Blitzwing series, here are the tank modes of my Blitzwing figures.

It’s hard for me to say which of these tank modes I like the best. They each have their strengths and weaknesses.

Studio Series Blitzwing does not have a tank mode, so obviously he does not appear here.

Here are the posts for their robot modes and jet modes.

Transform and Roll Out.
 

Categories: Pics

My Blitzwing Collection, Jet Mode

November 24th, 2020 No comments

Another quick post that follows up the one from yesterday. Here are those same Blitzwing figures in jet mode.

Rating on jet mode alone, my favorite out of these has gotta be DX9 Gewalt. This is exactly how I imagine a modern day triple changing MiG to be, based on updated G1 aesthetics. Most notably, the bulky G1 wings are gone. In my opinion that’s a good thing. Those tank-like G1 wings never did it for me.

Thrilling 30 Blitzwing as a jet mode that resembles Alpha Fighters from Genesis Climber MOSPEADA, like I mentioned in the last post. Titans Return Blitzwing has a jet mode that most resemble G1, out of this bunch.

Studio Series Blitzwing has a jet mode that probably looks closest to how a real MiG looks. I do like this figure. But it doesn’t triple change (no tank mode). Since the figure only has to manage 1 alt mode, I would expect it to look great (and it does).

Transform and Roll Out.
 

Categories: Pics

My Blitzwing Collection

November 23rd, 2020 No comments

Quick post today. I have all my Blitzwings out and about, so I gathered them all up for a group photo.

Clockwise, from top left:

Quick blurb about each:

Generations Thrilling 30
This figure has the infamous non-locking shoulder issue that all TransFans are now well aware of. Even repaints of this figure has the same, such as Doubledealer. I do like the jet mode of this Blitzwing. It reminds me of the jet mode of Alpha Fighters (Legios) from Genesis Climber MOSPEADA. Generations Thrilling 30 Blitzwing was also features in these posts.
Transformers On My Shelf, September 2013
Transformers on my Shelf, December 2013
Transformers on my Shelf, August 2015

DX9 Gewalt
As of this writing, DX9 Gewalt is still in my opinion the best 3P MP-style Blitzwing around. All 3 modes look great. The figure is well built. A bit hard to transform, but not frustrating or impossible. Some fans prefer KFC Ditka since it’s more G1 accurate. But that figure has tons of QC issues, and its over G1-ness more hurts than help the figure, in my opinion. Fans Toys Berserk (their version of Blitzwing) has been delayed for an eternity now. That figure may be better, but who knows when it will actually materialize. To this day we have seen nothing but black and white renders.
DX9 Gewalt was also features here.
Transformers Rub On Faction Decals
Shelter From Home Transformer Challenge

Titans Return
Titans Return Blitzwing is the most recently mass produced Blitzwing figure in the G1 CHUG verse. And as such, he is the best all-around Blitzwing figure that is generally available. He’s G1 enough that most hardcore fans will not complain about it straying too far from the source material, other than the fact that they made him a Headmaster in Titans Return. There’s some minor QC issues, but nothing near as bad as the Thrilling 30 version. All 3 modes are solid.
Titans Return Blitzwing can be found here.
Decepticon Power!
War For Cybertron Siege Storm Cloud and Visper Quick Review

Studio Series
This is the only non-G1 style Blitzwing on here. Studio Series Blitzwing appeared in the Bumblebee movie. The figure is not too shabby. He’s not a triple changer, but both robot mode and jet mode does justice to the movie character. Transformation is very refreshing for a jet-to-robot figure. Recommended.

“Destroy first, think later.”

Transform and Roll Out.
 

Categories: Pics

Joe Biden vs Optimus Prime

November 10th, 2020 No comments

Four years ago, when Donald Trump was elected President of the United States, I wrote a WTF piece on this blog about the absurdity.

Now, four years later, I’m glad the Trump era is coming to a close. The Secret Service and US Marshalls may have to drag him out kicking and screaming. That could make for some good reality TV. I would pay to watch that.

Things got interesting on election night. There was a point when it looked like Trump may pull off the upset once again. But then counts for swing states mail-in ballots slowly started to make its way, and from there it was obvious that America does not want someone so Tweet-happy to be the Commander in Chief. It took a few more days to officially declare Joe Biden the winner. Election night became election week.

As of this writing, Trump has not technically conceded. He may just leave the White House without anyone knowing, sometime between now and inauguration of the next President. When Megatron loses a battle and runs (as he so often does in G1), he’s not shy about yelling “retreat”. Trump won’t even give us that satisfaction. He’s just gonna quietly sneak away.

I welcome Joe Biden with open arms. But of course, my top pick for the job is still Optimus Prime.

I like the “Bidenisms”, short quotes of wisdom that Biden would spew out here and there. Joe Biden is funnier than Optimus Prime, I’ll give him that. This country could use more laughs.

But as far as doing the job, can Biden outperform Prime? Let’s compare and see.

Joe Biden Optimus Prime
Healthcare Forms a special task force to deal with COVID-19 with some doctors and scientists that no one has heard of Appoints Ratchet and Perceptor to work on COVID-19 vaccine
Clean Energy Outlined a 9 step clean energy plan that will cost $400 billion Convert all energy to energon, make all human equipment energon compatible
Education Promises more resources for schools and educators The great minds of Cybertron already has much to teach the humans
Travel and Commute Will reverse Trump Travel Ban, and invest in roads, bridges, airports, and transit systems Will build Space Bridges and Land Bridges all over the Earth
Overpopulation Has a climate plan, which may or may not address overpopulation Move humans to Cybertron
National Security Has the backing of the US Military Has the backing of the Autobots

I don’t know about you, but Optimus gets my vote. Next election I’m gonna write his name in. And if I lived in Vermont (I don’t), that would get reported.

Congratulations to Joe Biden. I look forward to what you will achieve for this nation.

Transform and Roll Out.
 

Categories: Uncategorized

TF Matrix 11 Year Anniversary

October 10th, 2020 No comments

One more year, my fellow TransFans. This blog has been up and running for 11 years now.

This year I got about the same stats as last year. I guess at 12,000 hits a year, it’s as low as it will go. That neatly comes to 1,000 hits a month. I can do better. I know I can. For now, I’m just glad that the blog is still going.

2020 has been a mixed bag. I’ll start with the pros. The War For Cybertron toy line has me impressed. Siege was great, and Earthrise is even better. The Netflix show was awesome to say the least. Too short, but still awesome.

There has been no new movies in the news, and to me that’s a good thing. I also like that the Studio Series is going through all the movies and re-doing figures from each movie. Most of the SS version of a character is leaps and bounds over the original one released at the time of the movie.

Now the cons. HasTak continues to produce more MPs. The price for MP-44 Optimus is just ridiculous. MP-47 Hound is also way more expensive than he should be. The upcoming MP Starscream 2.0 also continues this trend. As if the price wasn’t bad enough, both MP-44 and MP-47 are plagued with construction issues that require fixes. I am losing a bit of faith in the MP line.

As for 3rd and 4th party products, they’re not stopping. Too much in my opinion. I fear they are saturating the market. A market correction may be around the corner.

Finally, let’s not forget the global COVID-19 pandemic and how it has impacted the collectibles landscape. Figures are delayed as factories are shut down, re-opened, then shut down again. Same goes for international shipping. Store exclusives almost require pre-ordering these days if you want one. Personally I’m buying way more online, as opposed to shopping in-store. Not because I’m afraid of going out. Physical stores just don’t seem to get as much inventory anymore. Scalpers and price gouging was already a problem before COVID, and now it’s even worse.

Despite all these negatives I listed, the toys themselves continue to get better and better, whether they’re official or not. Yes they’re expensive, and yes there are delays after delays. But the improvements made to the figures keep me coming back for more. So many times I have considered getting out of this hobby. Then some awesome figures come along that reminds me of why I got into this in the first place.

Long live Transformers, and long live TF Matrix. Transform and Roll Out!
 

Categories: Uncategorized

Fans Toys Hunk Quick Review

September 24th, 2020 No comments

I first featured Fans Toys Hunk in this post. FT’s version of MP Brawn is getting his 15 minutes today.

He’s packed in robot mode, so let’s start there.

Hunk in classic A-stance.

View from the side. A bit of backpack kibble, but not too bad.

Back view.

Close up of the face. That’s a great sculpt. Good job FT.

Overall I’m very happy with Hunk’s robot mode appearance. This is a robot mode that does Brawn justice. I can nitpick here and there, but I don’t think there is a figure in existence that comes closer to how Brawn look in the G1 cartoons. The face is spot on. The colors are spot on. Brawn is stockier in the animation, so you might say Hunk’s proportions are a bit too slim. But I like it.

Here we see Hunk with his trademark pistol that the G1 animators created for him. As far as I can tell, this gun resembles the cartoon weapon fairly well. Hunk only comes with three accessories: this gun, another face of Hunk yelling (not pictured in this review), and a drill bit he uses in vehicle (more on this later).

Hunk in action.

Hunk celebrating.

Hunk standing around looking cool.

The articulation in robot mode is ok, but some may find it too limiting. The arms are not bad. Shoulder, elbow, and wrist rotations are all there. The legs ain’t too shabby either. Hip swivel, knee bend, and ankle pivots are all accounted for. Head rotation is very limited. There is no up and down, and side to side is extremely limited due to the back flap behind Hunk’s head. I’ve seen pics of Hunk with waist swivel, but I could not get the waist to twist. If possible, it’s really hard to do. I didn’t try it too hard in fear of breaking the toy. All the official FT pics don’t show Hunk with any waist swivel. There’s no ab crunch of any kind.

Here is Hunk next to the famous MP-10 Optimus Prime. They scale together pretty well.

When I took this pic, I had Hunk in one hand and the MP-10 in the other. To my surprise, Hunk weighs more! This is the US Version of the MP-10, and it’s unclear to me if the Japanese version uses any die-cast. But to have Hunk weigh more than the Hasbro MP-10 is still a testament to the fact that FT uses some quality materials. Bravo.

I detect no weaknesses in Hunk’s construction. All joints are at the right tolerance, nothing too loose or too tight.

As far as the robot mode’s appearance, I have next to no gripes. At first I thought the feet looked weird, in that they’re too big and they’re the wrong shape. But then I checked the G1 animation model and the comic book model, and that’s exactly how they look (especially in the US Marvel comics). So again, props to Fans Toys for being so toon accurate, something they never fail to do. I already mentioned about the size of the backpack when viewed from the side. Yes it’s not perfect, but easily forgivable considering how well everything else looks.

Transformation to vehicle mode is more on the complex side for a figure of this size. He’s not impossible like FT Rouge, but he’s also not simple like FT’s earlier offerings (Stomp, Soar, Sever, etc).

The leg transformation deserves special mention. Each leg splits apart, and ends up forming the sides of the vehicle. It sounds hokey on paper, but seeing this transformation implemented in action is kind of cool. G1 purists will bash this for being an unfaithful transformation, but that would fall into the area of hardcore nitpicking.

Going to alt mode, getting the backpack to be formed properly as the vehicle’s top rear section can be a bit frustrating. It takes perfect alignment for the whole assembly to snap into place. There are also a bunch of small transformation pieces on both the waist and legs that, in my opinion, detract from the overall enjoyment of the transformation process.

Hunk looks good in alt mode once the transformation is complete. Check the pics below.

Super accurate alt mode to the cartoon.

Another angle. Hunk comes with rubber tires and rolls well on a flat surface.

Side view.

Front view.

Back view. They did not forget the gas canister.

Bottom view. Notice there is storage for the weapon. Nice.

Here we see Hunk using that alt mode drill that Brawn used in The Ultimate Doom. I see this more as a novelty accessory, but kudos to FT for including it.

Another shot of the drill.

Now for some alt mode size comparisons. Here he is next to MP Bumblebee.

Now next to MP Sideswipe.

Next to both of them. For a mini-bot Hunk does seem a bit big in alt mode. But seeing as he is a Jeep off-road type of vehicle, I think it works.

Hunk is definitely a worthy purchase for your Masterpiece collection. Most of my gripes are transformation related. I think he’s more complicated than he needs to be. Fan of intricate articulation may also find Hunk a bit lacking in this regard. But this figure scores high in all other areas. I recommend Hunk with no reservation. The only other Masterpiece style Brawn that I’m aware of is Bad Cube Brawny. I don’t have that figure. I’m told Brawny is good too, but comes with a very punishing transformation process that is not for the faint of heart.

On a completely separate but related note, this marks my third review of a Brawn figure. The other two are my reviews for Revenge of the Fallen Brawn and Titans Return Brawn. Why am I reviewing so many Brawns? Is he subconsciously my favorite character? Probably not. I hope not.

Transform and Roll Out.
 

Categories: Pics, Toy Reviews

Transformers Purchased in November 2018

September 3rd, 2020 No comments

Only 2 figures were purchased for Nov of 2018. Both figures are from the Power of the Primes Evolution series.

  • Power of the Primes Evolution Optimal Optimus, Target, $44.99

  • Power of the Primes Evolution Nemesis Prime, amazon.com, $32.99

Both these figures were presented in this special Black Friday post. There are some minor details that’s worth repeating here. Being that they are both from the Evolution series in Power of the Primes, they each have 4 modes.

Optimal Optimus

When I found this figure at Target, I wasn’t sure if I really wanted him. I enjoyed Beast Wars, but I’m a G1 guy at heart. Figures that come from other TF lines are a lower priority for me. But Optimal Optimus does look cool in the box. And I’ve been mostly impressed with the Evolution series thus far. “Just buy it!”, said my wife, as she got sick of waiting for me to make up my mind while in the store. That was all the nudging I needed. And that was smart, since I never saw this figure in store again.

Optimal Optimus is an entertaining and fun figure. He represents all 3 forms of Optimus that we see in Beast Wars. First we have the base Optimus Primal figure, which is the smaller black and white component in this toy. That’s the first mode. This component transforms into a flying hoverboard (yes you read that right) used by the next form of Optimus Primal, the larger transmetal gorilla figure. Alternatively, the smaller component can transform into a backpack with weapons for the gorilla. This is the 2nd mode. The two components then come together to form Optimal Optimus, the final evolution of this character in Beast Wars. This is the 3rd mode. In this mode, Optimal Optimus can transform into a Cybertronian jet. And that’s the 4th mode. Yes I know on paper this all sounds very hokey and gimmicky. And yes this figure is a bit guilty of all those qualities. But I’m gonna guess that BW fans love this. This is the first time in TF history that we got a single figure who can decently represent Optimus Primal in all his forms in the show. Hasbro should be applauded for even attempting this. The end result is not perfect, but each mode is decent enough on its own.

BW fans should definitely not pass up on this figure. And I do recommend this for all other TransFans that want something different and original. If you don’t fall into either of these 2 groups, then this purchase would be optional. Optional Optimus. Yes, bad puns at their best.

Nemesis Prime

Evolution Nemesis Prime is an Amazon-exclusive repaint of Evolution Optimus Prime, with some minor mold differences and the inclusion of some additional weapons. Checking my TF List, this is only my 3rd Nemesis Prime figure. The other 2 I have is Alternator Nemesis Prime, and the Thrilling 30 legend class Nemesis Prime.

The only mold difference I’m aware of is in the heads. Nemesis Prime’s head is designed to look like that of Optimus, but everything is more triangular. The mouth piece, eyes, crown, and overall shape of the face, all more extremely triangular and angled. Looking directly from the front, the face kind of resembles the Decepticon symbol. I love it! To me this makes sense too, since Nemesis is supposed to be a different character from Optimus. The smaller base figure gets a new head mold too, though I’m not sure what this is supposed to be. I have no idea who “evolves” into Nemesis Prime, or if that even makes sense.

Nemesis Prime gets quite a bit of additional weapons. The first are two large grey twin-cannons, that can be used in the large robot mode and the truck mode. Next is the inclusion of a red sword. Finally, we have a grey sword that can transform into a bird! All the new weapons alone make this set worthy of purchase on its own, even if you already have Optimus.

I need to mention that construction of this figure is not as good as Evolution Optimus Prime. It’s not terrible, and nowhere near as bad as Evolution Rodimus Prime. But I just wanted to point out that there are some joints that feel a tad too loose, and I don’t remember Evolution Optimus Prime having those issues.

I bought this figure for $32.99 on a Cyber Monday sale, from Amazon. Checking the site now, this figure goes for more than $250! Wow. TFs are like stocks. You never know how they’re gonna go. If I can go back in time, I buy a few more of these. Heck, I’ll buy more Amazon stock. Then come back to my own time and retire.

That’s it for this month. One more purchase post left for 2018, and then it’s on to 2019! Yay. Better late than never I always say.

Transform and Roll Out.
 

Categories: On The Hunt, Pics

Masterpiece Optimus Prime and Autobots, Team 5

August 27th, 2020 No comments

MP Optimus is back with another team of trusted Autobots to lay waste to some undisciplined Decepticons up to no good.

This is Team 5. Here were the previous teams: Team 1, Team 2, Team 3, Team 4.

With the exception of MP-10 Optimus, all figures here are 3rd party and purchased within the last year. This really shows how far 3rd parties have come.

Fans Toys got 2 representatives here in Hunk and Sheridan. Hunk is a great figure, possibly the best MP Brawn on the market today. Both modes look toon accurate. Transformation to car mode can be a tad frustrating in the final steps. I have yet to transform Sheridan, but he definitely looks good in robot mode.

X-Transbots have undoubtedly improved their status as a 3rd party company of transforming figures in recent years. I’m generally very impressed with their offerings, and I got 3 here to prove it. I chose Neptune after looking through many choices in 3P MPs of Seaspray. He is in my opinion the best MP Seaspray on the market, in terms of cartoon accuracy and figure engineering. (Sidebar: the upcoming Spindrift 2.0 by Fans Toys may change that, but only time will tell.) Klaatu was also chosen among many 3P MP offerings of Cosmos. He looks the most toon accurate in both modes. I went with the metallic version, and I’m oh so glad I did. The picture here does not do this paint job justice, it has to be seen to be fully appreciated. Klaatu is a bit chunky in bot form, and he does present a bit of scale issues with other Mini-bots.

X-Transbots Aegis stars as MP Trailbreaker. In G1, Trailbreaker was my very first Carbot, so I’m extremely partial to Trailbreaker. He was the last Carbot to get any love in CHUG, something that I wasn’t entirely happy about. And now he is the last Carbot to appear in my Autobot MP Teams. I feel kinda bad about that. But better late than never, and in this case I could almost say I saved the best for last. XT Aegis is better than all previous attempts at an MP Trailbreaker. I won’t go into what those are, but if you are in the market for a MP Trailbreaker, you need only consider Aegis.

Transform and Roll Out.
 

Categories: Pics

Transformers Purchased in October 2018

July 31st, 2020 No comments

2018 continues with more TF goodies. Surprisingly, nothing from Power of the Primes (which was the current CHUG line at the time) and nothing from trusted 3Ps. Everything this month is Studio Series, G1 reissues, or 4P products.

  • Studio Series Shadow Raider, amazon.com, $19.99

  • Studio Series Bumblebee, amazon.com, $19.99

  • Studio Series Ironhide, amazon.com, $29.99

  • G1 Hot Rod, Walmart, $29.84

  • NBK Drump Truck, eBay seller, $12.74

  • NBK Mixer, eBay seller, $12.74

  • Kubianbao MP10-V Tactical Container, eBay, $34.76

Shadow Raider

Shadow Raider is a repaint of Studio Series 11 Lockdown. Overall, I like Shadow Raider better. I dig the orange colors. And I like his head mold. It’s as if Lockdown is wearing that green night vision helmet that we see him sport in Age of Extinction. I also like that Shadow Raider comes with an awesome looking gun, as opposed to that claw or hook thing that Lockdown has. If you already have SS Lockdown, then you may not want to buy essentially the same figure again. But if you don’t, then I recommend SS Shadow Raider over SS Lockdown, for the reasons I listed.

And now that I think on it, this orange Lamborghini reminds me of Revenge of the Fallen Oil Pan. The only pic I have of Oil Pan on this blog is this Halloween 2012 Pic (scroll to the most bottom pic, Oil Pan is the orange Lamborghini). I probably still have Oil Pan somewhere. Shadow Raider was featured in a Halloween post here.

Bumblebee

And here we have yet another movie Bumblebee. I swear, I’m so sick of writing about movie Bumblebees. Hasbro churned these out over and over and really forced this character down our throats. But this Studio Series Bumblebee transforms into a VW Bug, so I felt obligated to get one.

G1 purists will get this figure for the VW alt mode, but that’s about all this figure as going for it. Mechanically, this feels like all movie Bumblebees before it. The figure offers nothing new as far as transformation scheme. Take any deluxe movie Bumblebee made in the last 5 years, and imagine that it transforms into a VW Bug and not a Camaro. That’s how this figure feels.

Construction wise, this figure is also not the best. The joints are tolerable, but a bit too loose for my liking. Going to alt mode, SS 18 Bumblebee feels very much like a panel former. And the panels don’t come together that easily, because of the sub-par construction. Trying to combine panels when the build is too loose is not a fun exercise. Everything does come together in the end, but getting there is not pleasant.

Hasbro does sometimes improve their figures, then release the improved mold as a new figure. Case in point, SS 01 Bumblebee was later improved and released as SS 27 Clunker Bumblebee. I don’t have SS 27, but supposedly it fixed some stability problems. Will SS 18 also get an improvement sometime in the future? Only time will tell. In the mean time, get SS 18 Bumblebee if you must have a movie representation of everyone’s favorite hero as the VW Bug. Just don’t expect any originality here. You’ve seen this before.

Ironhide

Studio Series 14 Ironhide is a figure that I still have not opened to this day. I’m not sure why that is. I had every intention of opening this, but life gets in the way, other stuff happens. And before you know it, nearly 2 years go by and it’s still sitting in a box in the closet, unopened and collecting dust.

And I doubt I will open it now. A quick search on Amazon tells me that a new copy of SS 14 Ironhide goes for nearly $150! Yikes! Why is this figure is so valuable? Did they not make that many? Looking through the Amazon reviews, SS 14 appears to be a terrific figure. Some even prefer this over the MPM version.

I am really tempted to open SS 14 to check it out for myself. But on the other hand I don’t want to intentionally destroy $150 of value. What am I gonna do? Woe is me.

Hot Rod

This G1 Hot Rod reissue is a Walmart Exclusive. In G1, I had the Targetmaster version, so this is a figure I know well. Hot Rod is definitely one of the better figures from G1 Season 3. Of course, he is the star of the G1 Movie, so it makes sense for Hasbro to construct a figure worthy of our hero.

I normally don’t purchase G1 reissues from Walmart that they have released in the last several years. I feel weird saying that, since I re-started my TF collecting 16 years ago with G1 reissues. Looking at my TF List, I certainly have bought a lot of G1 reissues over the years. This means I have most of the figures being released now. And these new reissues are kind of pricey, for what they are. Perhaps that’s why I don’t feel the love for G1 reissues anymore.

But with all that being said, I bought this reissue of Hot Rod. I did that for 4 reasons: 1) I had the Targetmaster version, not the Season 3 version, which is what this is, 2) I don’t have Hot Rod as a reissue, 3) this is a good toy for G1 standards, and 4) he is the star of the G1 Movie.

My only regret is that I bought him way too soon. I got him at regular MSRP of close to $30. Walmart apparently had way too many of these, and within a month started dropping prices at my local store. At first they dropped to $25. At that price they still sat on the shelves. Then they were slashed to $15. Even at this price, they weren’t exactly moving. My local store even put them in the clearance section. I thought they would go down to $10, and at that price I’ll buy another one. But that never happened. It was pushing up against the holiday season, and at $15 many parents probably jumped on this. Either that, or some scalper came in and bought them all. I should have got another one when it was $15. If I did, I would open up one of them, and compare to my G1 Targetmaster fig. Oh well.

Dump Truck, Mixer

Here we have 2 more NBK Constructicons. After buying the first 4, I had to get these last 2 to complete this famous sextet in my collection. Dump Truck and Mixer is obviously Long Haul and Mixmaster, respectively. I love how NBK is just using their alt mode as their names. Actually, these may be the names that Generation Toy is using for the genuine article, and NBK is too lazy to come up with their own.

I like Dump Truck. I like the look of both of his molds. Transformation is not hard, but feels complex enough for a figure of his size. Speaking of size, all the NBK Constructicons are about voyager size. Many other modern Constructicon teams absolutely butcher Long Haul. Some of them make him way too big or too bulky, being out of scale of with the other team members (I’m looking at you). Some of them have production problems, being that Long Haul fails to be stable enough to be Devastator’s center. NBK Dump Truck shares none of these faults. Alt mode looks good, robot mode is just a tad bulky (as he should be, from the design), and overall he’s stable enough to provide adequate center of gravity for the gestalt. There are some panels that are difficult to tab together when transforming back to alt mode. It’s a slight distraction and does reduce my overall satisfaction with the piece. But, on a whole, Dump Truck is still a recommended 4th party figure.

Mixer is my final addition to this team. Unfortunately, much like Crane, my feelings for this figure is not as positive. Mixer is another piece where shoddy construction ruins a figure. Going from alt to robot, as soon as you un-peg the arms, the giant mixer barrel falls out. I don’t think this is intended, as the instructions never show it removed for any purpose. Alt mode looks pretty good. Robot mode could be better. I don’t like the large side panels on the arms, near the shoulders. Having the mixer barrel stay on in robot mode is not easy (again, don’t think it’s supposed to come off). In their defense, I don’t think any of the modern Constructicon teams does Mixmaster that well. None of them have figured out what to properly do with the mixer barrel in robot mode. It’s possible that the genuine article from Generation Toys does have the barrel stay on. The NBK figure is a floppy, frustrating mess.

With all 6 NBK Constructicons complete, they can combine and form Devastator. That deserves a review of its own, but I’ll just say quickly here that the combined form is impressive. Many will undoubtedly compare this to ToyWorld Constructor. I don’t think it’s fair to say here which is better. A lot of it will depend on what you value as a TransFan. But I will review NBK Devastator. A discussion on comparisons will be offered in that review.

MP10-V Tactical Container

In March of 2018, I acquired KBBMP10-V by Kubianbao. Yes, we all know what this is, a KO voyager size figure of perhaps the most famous MP to date. And Yes, KBBMP10-V is the name of this figure. Any true TransFans should be able to easily decipher it. It’s original, humorous, and lazy. I can’t get enough of 4th party shenanigans.

MP10-V Tactical Container is the trailer to that figure. And I’ll get straight to it: this is good! KBBMP10-V screamed high production values, and its trailer is no different. KBB is 4th party. When 4th companies can produce products that are superior in quality to the originals, it’s high time HasTak take a look in the mirror and do some serious soul searching.

Everyone already knows what modern Optimus trailers needs to feature today. So I’ll just quickly point out the pros and features of MP10-V Tactical Container in bullet points:

  • Beautiful paint job
  • Rubber tires on trailer
  • Spike figure included
  • Roller included (silver color)
  • Retractable ramp
  • Extendable drone module
  • Extendable antenna and claw on drone module
  • Trailer also functions as repair bay
  • Storage for all of KBBMP10-V’s weapons
  • Spike can sit in Roller, drone module, and a control unit inside the trailer
  • Drone module can be extended outside in trailer mode
  • Gap covers for hole used for drone module extension in trailer mode
  • Automatic down deployment of stabilizers when side supports move outward
  • Roller’s rear top can be transformed to allow for towing of trailer

Look at all the features above – this thing is just awesome! I’m probably forgetting some features too.

MP10-V Tactical Container is totally worth the money. I recommend this purchase with no hesitation.

That’s it for this month. Stats for the month:

  • 3 Studio Series figs
  • 1 G1 reissue
  • 3 4th party items

Until next time… Transform and Roll Out.
 

Categories: On The Hunt, Pics