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Old 2016-08-10, 02:03 PM   #5441
Paul053
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Originally Posted by Warcry View Post
And I actually found some Titans Return stuff in store today! Well, if "eight Sentinel Primes and nothing else" counts as "some", anyway.
I saw "one" yesterday, too. And also one Galvatron. Didn't pick up any. Yes, I agree. Sentinel's color scheme looks better by seeing the actual figure, but I still have no interest in Sentinel in this mold.
 
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Old 2016-08-10, 02:51 PM   #5442
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Originally Posted by Skyquake87 View Post
Combiner Wars Vortex
Its the workhorse Alpha Bravo mould. Not quite as crisp as Alpha himself, which is a shame. The plastics feel a bit milky. As expected, the mould fits Vortex like a glove and I like the new head that's been put on him.
I have the UW version, and it's my first experience of the mould. I do like it, but hate the way the rotors hang off his back. Vortex isn't the worst UW Combaticon (that is undoubtedly Brawl by a country mile), but for me he is the second poorest of the lot.

Still, love the UW Combaticons! They're on a whole different level to the CW Stunticons I have.

On to a new acquisition... SDCC Titans Return Fortress Maximus

Now, I've always wanted a Fort Max (I actually prefer RID Brave Max colours), and was totally set to get either Hasbro's or Takara's mainline release of this guy. Until I saw the pictures. With the right deco I could have lived with the fact he's a heavily retooled Generations Metroplex, but Hasbro's deco was predictably poor and then Takara (understandably) went for an even plainer deco to homage the Japanese Headmaster TV series. Coupled with a poor base mode (Fort Max turns in to a city, but all stock photos looked like a platform), this put me off buying the guy. The fact there was to be an SDCC exclusive version passed me by, but upon seeing images (thanks to @theglaug on Twitter) I was rather thrilled - this was the Fort Max deco for me and included the much needed sword!

Then, as chance would have it, A1 Toys in Glasgow are stocking the bug fellow at 169.99, which seemed a reasonable price tag for the figure.

So, ordered I did, and he quite wonderfully arrived at 21:00 after I'd done a 03:00 to 20:00 day at work (which was bloody stressful to boot). And somehow the delivery guy didn't wake my sleeping toddler!

The box is lovely... (And I've finally worked out how to put photos in here via Twitter - sorry it's taken so long. I'm just now very technologically adept sometimes!)


https://twitter.com/ChrisCathrine/st...53583452418048


https://twitter.com/ChrisCathrine/st...11086748262401

I've not had a lot of chance to play around with him yet - I should have more fun in the coming evenings while my wife is on holiday with a friend.

First impressions are positive though - undoubtedly coloured by the fact Fortress Maximus is a dream Transformer acquisition for me, and as I'd written off the Hasbro and Takara versions already finding one I liked was unexpected.

He is HUGE - and looks great with WSTs.


https://twitter.com/ChrisCathrine/st...01512520310784


https://twitter.com/ChrisCathrine/st...01884513128448

First off though - there is absolutely no escaping the fact many parts have been lifted from Metroplex. This is fine for the most-part. After all, the deco is very different and the torso and legs are heavily remoulded. However some elements are plain lazy - such as leaving the attachment points for Metroplex's knees and such like on the ramps hanging off Fort Max's shoulders, or - my biggest bugbear - the hinge that allowed Metroplex's left arm to swing round to become a tower: this sits proud on Fort Max's chest (right arm), and still functions, but for the life of me I cannot find a good use for it...

There are benefits of this lazy approach too though - it gives many options for your own base mode configuration! And there are plenty of, in my opinion, superior arrangements for the city mode. I like having his legs as towers - it looks like a city and you can angle the guns out this way as well.

Hasbro have barely bothered even trying with the instructions - which is fine as this guy is so simple, and there are so many small tweaks you can make with the left-over joints from Metroplex you may as well do your own thing. And this is the fun of Fort Max - his alt modes are eminently customisable to an individual's preferences!

Other good points are the sword storage on the robot mode's back, and the gorgeous faded soot paint effect on the knee cannons. The metallic stickers are also great, although come pre-applied - which would be fine if I couldn't have done a better job of many myself...

One thing which is clear - Fort Max has much better, chunkier proportions in robot mode than Metroplex, but this is really due to the original G1 designs rather than some improvement. Fort Max comes in a hair taller than Metroplex as well, so he reclaims his 'biggest' Transformer title - presumably until Titan Class Scorponok comes along in two or three years time... (I'm hoping!)

Cerebros is really neat - he's a head taller than a CW Deluxe (are TR Deluxes taller than CW ones?), with great articulation and a fun transformation (although it would be improved if his hands could fold away for head mode). 'Spike' is the Takara mould, so doesn't have the faceplate, but is really nice. The only thing which frustrates me is I find it quite hard to insert Spike's head back in Cerebros' neck... This is the first Titan Master I've had experience with, so I was wondering if there's a knack at all? Fortunately the attachment for Cerebros to Fort Max neck is well designed and easy to use (there's also a button on Fort Max's chest to eject the head).

Anyway, yeah... Much play time ahead. Will probably post some pictures in city mode at some point, and with Metroplex (but there are loads of photos out there taken by better photographers than me anyhoo).
 


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Old 2016-08-10, 05:07 PM   #5443
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Saw some titans return guys yesterday, so I got Hardhead and Skullcruncher. Neat updates for headmasters, but they feel like cheap ko's. Loose floppy fallapart messes.
 
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Old 2016-08-11, 03:41 PM   #5444
Paul053
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Originally Posted by numbat View Post
SDCC Titans Return Fortress Maximus
This and Metroplex. Who do you think is better (or you like more) since you owned both of them?

I want one, but I don't even dare to ask my wife "can I have one?"......
 
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Old 2016-08-11, 10:05 PM   #5445
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Originally Posted by ganon578 View Post
Before heading out on vacation, I picked up TR Skullcruncher and TR Hardhead.

I like them both fairly well, and these fall into the category of 'I know nothing of the character, but they look neat.' As mentioned by a few others, Hardhead is neat and simple, but quite a bit of fun. Skullcruncher I really like, but I'm slightly disappointed by the quality on mine; the hips (ball joints) are ridiculously loose. Those can be kind of fixed with some clear nail polish, IIRC?

I really like the play value on these TR figures. It's a shame most kids wouldn't appreciate that these days.
My Skullcruncher had the same hip problem. I just swapped the hip joints. They're still loose, but not floppy.

TR Scourge This one isn't fun. If I put Fracas in with Fracas's face backwards, Scourge is a bobblehead. Turn Fracas around, and he just falls out. I also hate the way the front of the altmode splits to accomodate the angled feet. It's also tough to tab him together. I'm trying to decide if I dislike him enough to return him or not.

TR Blurr I was on the fence. I'd seen several in stores with paint smear on the windshield. When I finally saw one without, I took a shot. He's not as much fun as HH and SC, but he's good. I don't know how Hasbro got the idea we like blue characters so much. Rid Steeljaw, Thunderhoof, this guy. CW Smokescreen had red paint for his alt deco, but just different shades of blue for his joints/thighs.

When I first saw how Hardhead's cannon opened up to fit another little guy (or two), I was pretty psyched about the idea. But, none of the other three have executed it nearly as well. SC's tail cannon makes a good seat, but can't be used in alt mode. Blurr's sled is well incorporated into his alt mode, but doesn't do much for me. Scourge's seat gun doesn't fit well in alt mode at all. Plus, it just looks like a seat instead of part of the actual figure.

Anyone else think it's odd that the first two TR Deluxes based on non-headmasters are characters whose heads don't fully disappear in alt mode?

MP Wheeljack Before I even took him out of the plastic tray, I noticed a chip/gap in the roof paint. It's very small, but messes up the arc of red on his bot chest. There's also a bit of black missing from the part below the door. Are paint errors like this common in the MP line?

Other than that, he's very well designed. I've only transformed him once. I like how the rear fenders turn inside out to hide the wheels in the bot torso. The only tricky part was lining up that flat panel that ends up inside his torso.
 

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Old 2016-08-12, 05:36 PM   #5446
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@Warcry, or anyone else who's curious, I took a quick pic of Optimus with the chest plate off. Sorry that it's, uh, sideways for some reason.
 
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Old 2016-08-12, 09:43 PM   #5447
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Makes the Hasbro release a decent choice. As and when they get to clearance (leader stuff never seems to do well) would be tempted to double-dip.
 
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Old 2016-08-13, 06:38 PM   #5448
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Originally Posted by Paul053 View Post
This and Metroplex. Who do you think is better (or you like more) since you owned both of them?

I want one, but I don't even dare to ask my wife "can I have one?"......
Here they are together...


https://twitter.com/ChrisCathrine/st...39364250136576

Really depends. I can't choose which I prefer right now. Metroplex is undoubtedly the more finessed figure - everything about him has a purpose. Fort Max on the otherhand has a lot of random holdovers from Metroplex that serve no purpose, but at the same time this gives a lot of scope for creating your own alt mode configurations. As to build quality, I can only compare Takara Metroplex to SDCC Fort Max, but Metroplex is definitely made of better plastic and holds together better (I had to work out how to properly attach the piece holding Fort Max's left leg side cannon as the moulded clip just slides through the slot!). I think Metroplex's base mode is more interactive for smaller figures as well, and he has firing missiles...

Obviously Cerebros is an attraction though - he's a really neat figure in his own right, and then 'Spike' adds a further dimension.



https://twitter.com/ChrisCathrine/st...11658942836736

Probably depends which you can get at a good price, and which you prefer from childhood.

SDCC's Fort Max base mode (tweaked to be more city-like) is ace with WSTs!

More photos here: https://twitter.com/ChrisCathrine/st...31511311572992

And I also staged a rematch between Fort Max and Overlord (Iron Factory Evil Lord), which was fun.

More photos here: https://twitter.com/ChrisCathrine/st...39336045645824

Ah, the things you can get up to while your toddler naps and your wife is on holiday!
 


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Looking for MP-11T Thundercracker and MP-9 Rodimus v2 (Takara version with as few QC issues as possible).


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Also items on eBay.
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Old 2016-08-13, 11:18 PM   #5449
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Stop making me want a Fort Max. It's hard enough to resist with Walmart selling him for $30 less than everywhere else.

Me, get it through my thick head already: I don't have anywhere to put one. I don't have anywhere to put one. I don't have anywhere to put one. I don't have anywhere to put one. I don't have anywhere to put one. I don't have anywhere to put one. I don't have anywhere to put one. I don't have anywhere to put one. I don't have anywhere to put one. I don't have anywhere to...I'm totally going to buy one, aren't I? Dammit, self!

(Thankfully I'm too drunk and high on cold medicine to remember where I left my credit card right now.)

Oh, and does the SDCC Cerebros have a different head than the retail one? I didn't realize that!

Quote:
Originally Posted by tahukanuva View Post
@Warcry, or anyone else who's curious, I took a quick pic of Optimus with the chest plate off. Sorry that it's, uh, sideways for some reason.
That looks pretty good! Well, I think I'll have to have a look at Prime in person, if my local stores ever stock anything other than Sentinel...

As far as the pic goes, did you take it on a mobile device? As I understand it, sometimes you need to open the pic up in an image editor and resave it before it'll have the orientation you expect.
 
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Old 2016-08-14, 12:55 AM   #5450
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Originally Posted by Warcry View Post
I don't have anywhere to put one
You can put it in our apartment
 

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Old 2016-08-14, 02:31 PM   #5451
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A bit more fun with SDCC TR Fortress Maximus... Perfect Effect Warden's BFG goes very nicely with him!




https://twitter.com/ChrisCathrine/st...19061075247104

I have to say, I've not actually had as much fun with a Transformer as I am with Fort Max in quite some time. So many play opportunities!

Sure you can find room - I mean, he's never going to have to go in to storage when he's this much fun, is he?
 


New sale thread added with a range of Transformers including Masterpiece, Botcon, CHUG, RID, Movies etc.

Looking for MP-11T Thundercracker and MP-9 Rodimus v2 (Takara version with as few QC issues as possible).


Check out my new sale thread now!

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Old 2016-08-17, 08:46 AM   #5452
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G1 Landmine.

I've seen a few reviews knock his robot mode, but I have to admit, I kinda like it. The decals and the wider variety of colours at least make him more visually interesting than most of the other Pretenders' three-tone affair. I also got one whose shell has next to no paint wear which is nice, but desperately needs new stickers.
 
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Old 2016-08-17, 05:01 PM   #5453
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Nah, Landmine sucks, you're crazy.

Quote:
Originally Posted by numbat View Post
Sure you can find room - I mean, he's never going to have to go in to storage when he's this much fun, is he?
No, no, that's the problem! I have nowhere I can put him but storage. There's nowhere else in our little house that I can put something as big as Fort Max where our 13 month old won't get his hands on it. Even my Sentinel Prime already has tooth marks and he's not tackle-hug sized. I don't know if Max would survive.

In other news, I finally found the first wave of Titans Returns Deluxes last night! Blurr and Scourge look like ass in person just like they did in pictures (I'm not one for playing the Takara card but damn did they make these two look so much better). Hardhead and Skullcruncher, on the other hand, looked great!

Hardhead is a lot of fun! He's not super complicated, but he's nice and poseable. The cannon adds a lot of play value in both modes, and also gives a lot of variability to his robot mode look. I could easily see the mold working as the rumoured Quake (albeit one inspired by his older-than-dirt BotCon appearance), but also expect we'll get a lot of Megatron (both G1 and G2), Soundwave and Stalker customs out of it. The way his legs transform really bugs me, though -- not because it doesn't work, but because it reminds me so much of another toy I own and I can't for the life of me figure out which one.

Skullcruncher is a bit messier. In the short time it's been out the figure has become notorious for having loose, floppy legs, and mine was definitely afflicted with that. I've tightened them a bit by clear-coating the ball joints and swivels, but straight out of the box the figure would barely stand in robot mode. My other gripe is that his face proportions are all kinds of messed up. He's about 50% forehead, and while you could point to Hardhead for having weird face proportions too, he's got a faceplate so it doesn't look so strange.

On the flip side, Skullcruncher is also known for having a lovely, expressive beast mode, and that's definitely true. The croc head is ball-jointed and it's got an articulated jaw, giving him a lot more poseability than you'd expect from such an alt-mode. It makes the beast mode a lot of fun to mess around with, so this configuration is definitely the star of the show.

But like the original, he doesn't really have a cockpit for his partner (though at least he stores him inside a box in his torso rather than swallowing him like the G1 figure did). So unlike Hardhead (who has both a visible cockpit and a gunner's seat for Titan Masters) with Skullcruncher there's no real motivation to ever transform the little guy, and he feels more like a partsformer than a Headmaster.

So overall, Hardhead is a really good example of how to do Headmasters right, while Skullcruncher is just kinda okayish.
 
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Old 2016-08-17, 06:50 PM   #5454
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The way his legs transform really bugs me, though -- not because it doesn't work, but because it reminds me so much of another toy I own and I can't for the life of me figure out which one.
Generations Trailbreaker & Hoist had legs that transformed that way, IIRC.
 


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Old 2016-08-17, 07:12 PM   #5455
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Yeah, I think that's who I was thinking of. As soon as you said that I got flashbacks of transforming them.

I should pull my Trailbreaker out of storage. He was a solid little toy.
 
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Old 2016-08-18, 04:43 PM   #5456
inflatable dalek
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Like Warcry I own Skullcruncher and Hardhead! It's like he wants to be me so badly.

Basically I'd agree with all his points, except as well as loose legs my Skullcruncher has trouble keeping one of his claws on.

Slightly baffled by the packaging making more of a thing of the head in the profile on the back than the actual toy. Though Skullcruncher's stand up career must be dying a death if he turns invisible every time he has his head on.
 
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Old 2016-08-18, 05:12 PM   #5457
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Originally Posted by inflatable dalek View Post
Like Warcry I own Skullcruncher and Hardhead! It's like he wants to be me so badly.
Pretty sure you're the copycat this time.

Quote:
Originally Posted by inflatable dalek View Post
Basically I'd agree with all his points, except as well as loose legs my Skullcruncher has trouble keeping one of his claws on.
Are you sure it's popped on all the way? Mine had a loose claw too, but upon closer inspection the factory just hadn't bothered to push in the two little nubs that are supposed to keep in in place.

Quote:
Originally Posted by inflatable dalek View Post
Slightly baffled by the packaging making more of a thing of the head in the profile on the back than the actual toy. Though Skullcruncher's stand up career must be dying a death if he turns invisible every time he has his head on.
Gotta push that gimmick!

But seriously though, Skullcruncher is a dimwitted, tooth-grinding cannibal and I'll fight anyone who says otherwise.
 
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Old 2016-08-18, 05:15 PM   #5458
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Warcry View Post
Pretty sure you're the copycat this time.
I already had mine when I saw your post, I think it was actually a simultaneous buy (it took me a while to add my own views, I'm a very busy man)!


Quote:
Are you sure it's popped on all the way? Mine had a loose claw too, but upon closer inspection the factory just hadn't bothered to push in the two little nubs that are supposed to keep in in place.
Every time I pop it in it just pops out again.


Same with Skullcruncher's claw.


Quote:
But seriously though, Skullcruncher is a dimwitted, tooth-grinding cannibal and I'll fight anyone who says otherwise.
Sounds like Peter Kay to me.
 
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Old 2016-08-18, 05:19 PM   #5459
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Originally Posted by inflatable dalek View Post
Sounds like Peter Kay to me.
The past! Being a kid! D'you remember that? Were you alive when you were younger? There was stuff about in the past wasn't there? When you were younger. Here's a list of some of it! Being a kid, eh? When you were younger? In the past!
 
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Old 2016-08-18, 05:22 PM   #5460
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I really hope that when James wrote Skullcruncher as that sort of comedian ("Phases eh, what was all that about?") it was an intentional piss take rather than him thinking "I want him to be a really good comedian so I'll write him like the best!"
 
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