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Brendocon 2.0
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Post by Brendocon 2.0 » Sun Dec 20, 2015 12:23 pm

numbat wrote:I've only had time to put together the combined mode. I mean, with Devastator, that's what you've got to do first, right? It's why anyone buys him.
:glance:
I've actually found I can pose him fine in more natural positions than Bredocon 2.0 suggests - granted he doesn't have the flexibility of MMC Feral Rex in this regard, but hey, you wouldn't expect him to at quarter the price! I was quite surprised by how sturdy his feet are - particularly Scrapper given his transformation.
Okay, maybe this is me then, because it's the Scrapper foot that was giving me the problem. Wasn't holding the weight well at an angle, so it's possible I didn't have things locked into place properly (lets be honest the instructions probably aren't great even if I could read Japanese). Can't check at the moment as I've broken him down into the component parts due to shelf height limitations. Might have another crack at it during the week.
Three other things which came as a surprise (in a positive way):
- He has really good articulation for his size, and as his components are quite light this lends itself to poseability.
- Devastator looks like a consistent robot - not like a series of small robots or vehicles pegged to a torso in any way.
- He's actually bigger than I expected.
Yep, yep and yep. They've absolutely nailed the combined mode for me. Will be interested to hear what you think of the components when you've had a run through them.
Skyquake87 wrote:I second Brendocon's comments on the CW / Unite Warriors Protectobots. So much so, I've moved them on already. Shame as I like the Protectobots and the designs were decent. Thin ass plastics, wheels that fall off and a messy combined form just didn't do it for me.
:eyebrow: The comments where I said I like them? :o

Yeah, Defensor isn't amazing, but as a set of individual robots I'm fairly sure I came down in favour. Except for Hot Spot's "cartoon accuracy through looking like we forgot to paint it" lower body.

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Clay
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Post by Clay » Sun Dec 20, 2015 1:26 pm

Brendocon 2.0 wrote:Basically, if you’re not already committed to getting this, don’t do it to yourself. Other opinions may be available, but unless you can find it heavily reduced that's my advice to you. Yeah, it’s nice to have some pretty much toon-accurate Constructicons in about the same size reference as the MP stuff, but holy **** man have some self respect.
I am disappointed that you have talked me out of one. I wanted to believe that it wouldn't be that bad, but... here we are. I could tell from the pictures that the figures were quite simple, and I don't mind simplicity at any size, but I don't care for larger figures feeling cheap.

I suppose I'd be happier getting the itty-bitty legends-sized third party set whenever it pops up, or 1/3 of the Toyworld set. Ah, well.

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Post by Cliffjumper » Sun Dec 20, 2015 1:56 pm

Got to admit the state of the individual 'structies is a turn-off for me. Devastator's the main ticket, sure, but among the combiner teams they actually do pretty well both for basic designs and characterisations - guys like Long Haul and Scrapper are guys in their own right for me, rather than just bits of Devastator (whereas the ROTF one didn't bother me because they're just an undetermined number of random movie cannon fodder).

They're not even Lost Lighters.

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Brendocon 2.0
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Post by Brendocon 2.0 » Sun Dec 20, 2015 2:20 pm

I'd be a lot happier with the state of Scrapper, Hook, Scavenger and Bonecrusher if they were deluxe size. They're not necessarily badly designed, they're just nowhere near what you'd expect for a toy of that scale.

Ball joints, elbows and separate legs aside, Mixmaster is pretty much on a par with the original Scramble limbs in terms of complexity. Flip this part out for the legs, pull arms away from body, pull this back and unfold the head. But with the mixer drum hanging off his arse like he's Waspinator or something.

I'll reiterate that if you know what you're getting yourself into and you can find it really cheap, it's probably not so bad. But as individual toys at this size point, they're nowhere near the level you'd expect.

Okay, the combined mode is one of the main selling points, but the same's true for the Scramble-style guys and they've at least managed to be churned out in a way that they've got something going for them on their own merits. I think there's a damn good reason these guys weren't seen fit for individual sale.

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Post by Denyer » Sun Dec 20, 2015 2:26 pm

Do we think it was Hasbro / Takara / both that pushed for them to be upscaled? Can see how something around newer MP scale would be a selling point, but it's a big negative for sizing to be bigger than other CW combiners personally.

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Brendocon 2.0
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Post by Brendocon 2.0 » Sun Dec 20, 2015 2:39 pm

Denyer wrote:Do we think it was Hasbro / Takara / both that pushed for them to be upscaled? Can see how something around newer MP scale would be a selling point, but it's a big negative for sizing to be bigger than other CW combiners personally.
I don't know how he stacks up size-wise with Metroplex, but I think making him this size is part of a desire to do a "supreme" (or whatever they're calling it) size point release every year.

I'm fairly sure Takara used photos of one of the individual robots alongside MP Sideswipe as a scale indicator in one of the trade magazines, so they were definitely into hitting that as a marketing point.

I'm really hoping that it's a case of they were designed smaller and then upscaled to hit the bigger size, because otherwise somebody sat down and did all this on purpose.

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Terome
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Post by Terome » Sun Dec 20, 2015 3:06 pm

Cliffjumper wrote:If you haven't immediately turned Impactor into his sort-of tank a bit mode 3P Nazis (because there are totally other kinds of 3P enthusiasts) will break into your house and do shit on the living room carpet. True story.
Is that a thing? I'm not sure where this joke grew out from.

I was a little bit shocked at how sharp his harpoon is.

In other news I have 4/5ths of a Menasor and he is too tall for any of my shelves. Also because of the expression on his face he looks hilarious when he falls over, which is all the time because he has gammy hips. It's worth the price of admission all by itself.

Rattrap is a nightmare. He looks more like The Thing taking on rat form than anything else.

Quite pleasantly surprised with Windblade too. Didn't like the look of the toy in photographs but there's some fun things going on there. Plus it's nice to have the occasional toy that doesn't have the proportions of Mr. Universe.

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Warcry
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Post by Warcry » Sun Dec 20, 2015 3:21 pm

numbat wrote:I've only had time to put together the combined mode. I mean, with Devastator, that's what you've got to do first, right? It's why anyone buys him.
It's that sort of attitiude that let Hasbro figure they could get away with this nonsense in the first place. :(

The only thing I cared about was getting good toys of Scrapper, Hook and co., so this set was a big no for me from day one.
Brendocon 2.0 wrote:I'm really hoping that it's a case of they were designed smaller and then upscaled to hit the bigger size, because otherwise somebody sat down and did all this on purpose.
They definitely did it on purpose. Hasbro claimed that the reason why the individual robots suck so much is that if they gave him more joints the combined mode would be too unstable to pass safety laws, or some such nonsense. Though it's just as likely that they just couldn't do a good job on six toys with a budget and parts count meant for a single, huge toy like Metroplex.

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Clay
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Post by Clay » Sun Dec 20, 2015 4:03 pm

Warcry wrote:They definitely did it on purpose. Hasbro claimed that the reason why the individual robots suck so much is that if they gave him more joints the combined mode would be too unstable to pass safety laws, or some such nonsense. Though it's just as likely that they just couldn't do a good job on six toys with a budget and parts count meant for a single, huge toy like Metroplex.
Aye, it's a shame that Devastator had to be undermined by their own internal design restrictions. While I can appreciate that Hasbro are squarely aimed at a wider market than any of the third party outfits, if this was the best that they could do... why bother?

At least the Scramble groups have all been good fun.

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Brendocon 2.0
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Post by Brendocon 2.0 » Sun Dec 20, 2015 4:29 pm

I can only speak for myself, but I'd have been happier paying slightly more across six individually released voyager toys that are really good and combine into a Devastator that's a bit meh.

But then I'm definitely part of team "to me the Constructicons are a group of six characters I like who happen to have a combined form". Giant smashy robot is a tertiary concern for me.
Warcry wrote:They definitely did it on purpose. Hasbro claimed that the reason why the individual robots suck so much is that if they gave him more joints the combined mode would be too unstable to pass safety laws, or some such nonsense.
Oh they've actually acknowledged it have they? Well that's marginally better. Not to the degree that it excuses it, but at least there's an admission of shitness thrown in. I'd presume the combined forms of the other sets don't need to go through the same safety tests because they're not being sold in that form, but then there's a G2 Superion giftset so I don't know.

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Post by numbat » Sun Dec 20, 2015 7:25 pm

Firstly, I do apologise for my remark about the individual Constructicons. That was meant as a joke. Other than price, the main reason I hadn't gone for a 3P Devastator so far was because the individual robots didn't all look like the G1 Constructicons - Long Haul in particular seemed to suffer in all versions.

I just went in to Unite Warriors Devastator with my eyes open, knowing it wouldn't be Masterpiece quality or even normal release quality when it came to the individual team members.

I've still not had much time to play with them, but I have transformed Hook, and actually found him to be more involved than I expected - his legs reminded me of MP Sideswipe in design. The robot mode ain't bad, and stands as tall as CW Voyager Motormaster. He's not great either though, and those elbows are just a bloody joke.

Anyway, here's a couple photos showing you don't have to have Devastator's legs straight to have him free-standing happily.

Image

Image
Brendocon 2.0 wrote:I don't know how he stacks up size-wise with Metroplex, but I think making him this size is part of a desire to do a "supreme" (or whatever they're calling it) size point release every year.
I can help here (just quick snaps so not amazing poses or quality I'm afraid).

Comparison with Takara Metroplex:

Image

Comparison with Combiner Wars Menasor:

Image

Comparison with Supreme Unicron:

Image

Also, if interested, here is a comparison between the Unite Warriors Constructicons and Combiner Wars Stunticons in vehicle modes:

Image

Image

(And yes, Mixmaster is facing backwards, but that's because I really hate the stupid mixing truck he's been updated to and at least this way he looks semi-ok-ish...)

Like I say, I've not had much of a chance to play with, but will do robot comparisons if I get a chance later this week.
Denyer wrote:Do we think it was Hasbro / Takara / both that pushed for them to be upscaled? Can see how something around newer MP scale would be a selling point, but it's a big negative for sizing to be bigger than other CW combiners personally.
Brendocon 2.0 wrote:I'm fairly sure Takara used photos of one of the individual robots alongside MP Sideswipe as a scale indicator in one of the trade magazines, so they were definitely into hitting that as a marketing point.

I'm really hoping that it's a case of they were designed smaller and then upscaled to hit the bigger size, because otherwise somebody sat down and did all this on purpose.
I remember reading an interview with the designer. He said that he'd always wanted to do a Masterpiece Devastator, and had even gone some way to designing one. When given the job to do the Combiner Wars / Unite Warriors one he dusted off those designs. He felt this may be the only chance Devastator got for an update, so tried to make the figure fit with the Masterpiece cars in scale, in the idea it could be the Masterpiece Devastator, even if it didn't quite match in quality. So the size was always intentional. Hasbro gave restrictions on the number of parts to keep costs down to hit a set price point, he said (but could well be toy safety - I don't know), but Takara didn't have the same pricing restrictions so that's why the Unite Warriors version got blessed with more elbows for team members. He probably did what he could within a lot of restrictions, I guess.

Anyway - I doubt anyone will argue that this is a Masterpiece. The elbows are really the worst thing for me. I mean, they just look crap.

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!

Also items on eBay.

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Brendocon 2.0
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Post by Brendocon 2.0 » Sun Dec 20, 2015 7:54 pm

numbat wrote:Firstly, I do apologise for my remark about the individual Constructicons. That was meant as a joke.
Eh, don't be apologising for that. Doubt anybody took offence and discussion is good.
Anyway, here's a couple photos showing you don't have to have Devastator's legs straight to have him free-standing happily.
Cheers. Probably didn't have Scrapper's arms locked in properly or something.
(And yes, Mixmaster is facing backwards
I think you mean "Mixmaster is positioned correctly and it's not even a thing we're going pretend otherwise about."
He probably did what he could within a lot of restrictions, I guess.
There is that. But still, even with my expectations quite low to start with, it's really disheartening.

Ho hum.

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Post by inflatable dalek » Sun Dec 20, 2015 8:46 pm

I think with the Constructicons I'd be more forgiving if they'd been available individually or part of the current cartoon aimed at kids. Effectively though it's a big expensive set only adults are going to want (I suppose if children know who Devastator is at all they think of the ROTF version) that consists of cheap kids toys.

And this is improved Takara version isn't it? Does the Hasbro pack come smeared in dog poo?
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Post by Sades » Sun Dec 20, 2015 9:47 pm

Hound picked out a CW Ultra Magnus for his present but he elected not to open it until Christmas Day.

He's torturing himself for the sake of Christmas. Isn't that nice?
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Post by Skyquake87 » Mon Dec 21, 2015 6:13 am

Brendocon 2.0 wrote::eyebrow: The comments where I said I like them? :o
Yay for me reading that wrong. apologies.

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Post by Brendocon 2.0 » Mon Dec 21, 2015 8:51 am

First Hound, then numbat and now you, it's a pity you Autobots die so easily I'm not going to rest until this entire board is just people apologising to me for shit I'm not really bothered about. :o

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Skyquake87
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Post by Skyquake87 » Mon Dec 21, 2015 6:19 pm

its because we were all brought up properly and have manners and that :swirly:

plus I always feel a bit of a prat when I mis-interpret things.

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Post by Warcry » Mon Dec 21, 2015 7:52 pm

Clay wrote:Aye, it's a shame that Devastator had to be undermined by their own internal design restrictions. While I can appreciate that Hasbro are squarely aimed at a wider market than any of the third party outfits, if this was the best that they could do... why bother?
Well...money, obviously. They probably did some market research and figured out that they'd make more profit off of this half-assed effort than if they'd done the individual Constructicons properly and charged $20 more for the set.
Clay wrote:At least the Scramble groups have all been good fun.
True enough. It's just a shame that the line is dying out without them bothering to make half of the traditional teams. I just don't get cramming out random characters as combiners, while only releasing one out of the twenty-one Technobots, Terrorcons, Seacons and Predacons. I mean, the argument is "they need recognizable characters", but I really doubt that kids are more likely to buy Mirage, Cyclonus or Hound than they are Nosecone, Cutthroat or Razorclaw. If they'd combinerized the likes of Megatron, Starscream, Soundwave or Bumblebee, sure, I'd believe that. But out of the random redecos the only actual needle-mover was Optimus.

And that's without getting into silly stuff like the G2 box sets or Victorion.
Brendocon 2.0 wrote:I can only speak for myself, but I'd have been happier paying slightly more across six individually released voyager toys that are really good and combine into a Devastator that's a bit meh.
The scary part is that (here at least) the set actually costs the same as six Voyagers. So the actual price would have worked out to about the same. I think I would have been happiest with six Deluxes so that they would have been compatible with the rest of the line. It would have been nice to toss Scrapper onto Menasor as a leg, or have Scavenger attach to Superion as an arm. Or to have four random dudes slapped on as limbs for the Hook/Long Haul torso.

Speaking of, has the official fiction ever played up the interchangeability of combiner parts? That could actually be very interesting.
Brendocon 2.0 wrote:But then I'm definitely part of team "to me the Constructicons are a group of six characters I like who happen to have a combined form". Giant smashy robot is a tertiary concern for me.
I tend to agree. I'm way more excited to have a cool modern toy of Air Raid or Dead End or Hot Spot than I am by the combined modes. Though don't get me wrong, it's definitely cool that they can combine. It's just not the main appeal for me.
numbat wrote:Firstly, I do apologise for my remark about the individual Constructicons. That was meant as a joke.
Sorry for misinterpreting it. Unfortunately a lot of people in the fandom will say that and mean it.

I've honestly never understood why so many people only care about the combined modes, with no attention given to the individual robots. No matter where you look, be it the cartoon, the comics or the character bios, it seems like the writers went out of their way to make the super robots as boring as possible. At least some of the individual robots got a personality!
numbat wrote:Also, if interested, here is a comparison between the Unite Warriors Constructicons and Combiner Wars Stunticons in vehicle modes:
numbat wrote:He felt this may be the only chance Devastator got for an update, so tried to make the figure fit with the Masterpiece cars in scale, in the idea it could be the Masterpiece Devastator, even if it didn't quite match in quality. So the size was always intentional.
This is probably my biggest gripe with the set, actually, even beyond the overly-simple individuals. Devastator is just too big and doesn't fit in with the rest of the CW toys at all. He doesn't look like he belongs with the rest of the line and there's no play value to messing around with him and Superion, which makes it really easy for me to ignore him without any regrets (whereas I probably would have bought all the Stunticons, Protectobots and Combaticons to go with my full set of Aerialbots if I'd had space and money for them, just because).

I think I'd even have been happier with a Constructicon team that was randomly turned into a Scramble City group, with one of Long Haul or Hook randomly upsized into a voyager torso and the other demoted to a legends accessory.
numbat wrote:Anyway - I doubt anyone will argue that this is a Masterpiece.
I've actually seen people argue exactly that on other boards. :(
inflatable dalek wrote:I think with the Constructicons I'd be more forgiving if they'd been available individually or part of the current cartoon aimed at kids. Effectively though it's a big expensive set only adults are going to want (I suppose if children know who Devastator is at all they think of the ROTF version) that consists of cheap kids toys.
Yeah, I don't get this sort of cost-cutting on what amounts to a (for all intents and purposes) online-exclusive collector-oriented product. If there were shelves full of these in all my local stores and a big push to get them into the hands of kids, that'd be another story. Though how kids would be expected to play with a combiner that's taller than Dikembe Mutombo, I don't know.

But when the product's primary demographic is adults, I dunno. You'd think that they'd have taken a different approach to the thing.

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Post by Denyer » Mon Dec 21, 2015 7:59 pm

Not the biggest fan of the 'Structicons so I'm happy with TFC Structor and a yellow MakeToys Crane on the way (having figured out from reviews that the crane can be made to peg into the back like a mofo-ing guitar...)

I'm sure they could have managed a regular CW design with two deluxes for the torso rather than one voyager.
I just don't get cramming out random characters as combiners
Purely a cost decision, I imagine. Flog the designs whilst there's interest. And I strongly suspect future lines will include a combiner or two by default in the same way that a token "beast" presence has made it into lots of lines.

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Brendocon 2.0
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Post by Brendocon 2.0 » Mon Dec 21, 2015 8:10 pm

Yeah, it's clearly far easier for them to redo Breakdown as Wheeljack than it is to sit down and put together a Sinnertwin that they can't realistically redeco into a pre-existing character.
Warcry wrote:And that's without getting into silly stuff like the G2 box sets or Victorion.
I'm the only one in the world with emotional attachment to G2 Superion, aren't I? :(
Speaking of, has the official fiction ever played up the interchangeability of combiner parts? That could actually be very interesting.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x7RbU7fzHeI
Abandon hope all ye who etc and so on.
I've actually seen people argue exactly that on other boards. :(
If it's not marketed as part of the Masterpiece range, it's not part of the Masterpiece range. Some things may be compatible with said range, but really it shouldn't be any more complicated than that. Sadly when were TF fans ever governed by logic.

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