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Posted: Fri Jan 31, 2020 3:34 am
by Warcry
I got a box of stuff from Toys'R'Us that I never expected to own! Until a couple days ago I hadn't really noticed that they carried Generations Selects, but I happened to spy some while browsing their Chinese New Year sale on their website.

Selects Hot Shot: Oh my...this is so much cooler than I expected! Hound looks pretty cool, but I haven't been tempted to buy one because I already have several super cool Hounds. But I absolutely adore Cybertron Hot Shot's colours. And splashing them onto a cool mold like this? Amazing! The transformation is really inventive, both modes look great and the robot has pretty good articulation too. And the head sculpt is spot on to Cybertron Hot Shot, which was one of the coolest heads to come out of that era. I do wish they'd sprung for new weapons, though, because while the robot design doesn't scream "Hound" to me, that shoulder launcher sure does! One of the nicest left-field redecos I've seen in ages, and basically what the Selects line was made for.

Selects Jet Powerdasher Cromar: If Hot Shot is a redeco done right, this is the exact opposite. Cromar embodies all the worst of modern Hasbro in one figure.

I had the original as a kid. I got it for $2 or something from a clearance outlet in 1991ish. They'd had Omnibots too and I don't think I ever stopped kicking myself after I opened the damned thing and saw how bloody awful it was. But it did have a derpy charm of sorts and it's cool that Hasbro did such a good job bringing his ridiculous sticker face to life. But beyond that, this new figure...just yuck.

There's not a lick of colour anywhere on the Powerdasher's arms, and what little bit the legs have is basically invisible because it's not that different from the red plastic. The thing looks like a dollar-store knockoff standing beside Sixgun (a genuinely good figure in his own right). And it barely even looks like the original Powerdasher. He didn't have any details on his arms either, but he didn't need to because his entire arms were chromed, and the bling was what you noticed. This figure feels like they'd sketched out a slavish update (with fully silver-painted or chromed arms), got told "no" by accounting and then just didn't bother to go back and splash some detail colours on him because he didn't have that back in the sacred year 1984, and who cares about Powerdashers anyway?

Well, **** that shit. There's a good toy in here waiting to be brought out, so I'm going to dismantle the damned thing (thankfully, he's a Weaponizer) and either break out the airbrush or go all-out and get some liquid chrome. But as a stock figure in a premium collector line? Not acceptable, not by a long shot.

Siege Battle Patrol: Hadn't really planned to get these guys, but buying them put me over the threshold for free shipping. It actually worked out to be less than shipping the two Deluxes on their own. So I guess TRU paid me $1.50 to take these guys off of their hands? Sure, why not?

Skyquake is basically right about for their size, but they feel cheap, the clip-on wheels suck (and moreso because they're the same colour as Big Shot's body) and Flak especially is constantly losing his legs. I find that the QC for the Micromasters is really all over the map, and it really impacts the enjoyability of the figures. For example, I love my Whisper and Storm Cloud because they actually stay in one piece, while Red Hot and Stakeout constantly go to pieces if I handle them. These two are somewhere in the middle, but the whole price point has issues that Hasbro needs to iron out.


Posted: Fri Jan 31, 2020 3:26 pm
by inflatable dalek
Got a Siege Hound.

Spent a long time trying to work out how the arms cleverly folded away into the underside of the vehicle mode before realising they just sort of hang there.

But really quite a lot of fun regardless.


Posted: Sat Feb 01, 2020 1:31 pm
by Skyquake87
Some more Energon Goodies! (there's a pun there, I'm sure...)

Deluxe Towline
I was charmed by this toy having watching Thew's review on him. He's a really nice toy with some fun gimmicks, just ruined by an odd mix of red, white, blue, gold, black, white and olive green. As with Machine Wars Optimus Prime, it's the weird mix of military colours which jarr. The vehicle mode is also really nicely detailed and could have done with some more thoughtful paint applications than just bunging some stripes on, but what would I know?

Deluxe Snowcat
Nice G.I.Joe homaging figure that turns into a portly looking fellow cluttered up with skies and a gas mask. Sadly, time has not been kind to the translucent plastics on the example I picked up and the cannon assembly has disintegrated at the hinge.

Ultra Class Bulkhead
A brilliant helicopter lad with a redundant ED-209 backpack. I see he's supposed to be some sort of Springer homage because he's green and turns into a helicopter, but I think that's nonsense. He's a fantastic chunky looking chap and it's shame they went with blue for the drone unit and not something with matching colours, as it just makes him look like he's going camping. With guns.

Ultra Class Landmine
See Bulkhead, this is how it's done? A seamless integration of the drone unitin both vehicle and robot mode, Landmine is a fantastic mess of half-track Mad Max weirdness. He's a glorious looking construction vehicle / crane thing neatly done out in Orange, blue and black. The regular robot is great, if a bit daft looking with those pointy shoes, but by gum does he look awesome with Power Loader type armour add-on. Fantastic.

Deluxe Downshift
An overt channeling of Wheeljack (and one of a number of such G1 references in the line), Downshift is actually pretty nice. He's absolutely huge for a Deluxe figure (he can comfortably Powerlinx with fatty Voyager Ironhide and not look silly) and has a nice, if basic transformation. Whilst he does have plenty of articulation, the way hes' been designed and engineered means you can't really make good use of it, which is shame. His small body means his big arms and legs swamp him somewhat.

Voyager Scorponok
My word, this guy is just fantastic. He's as wide as he is tall and has a glorious mix of colours. He's chunky and tough and blockier than a Yorkie bar. I love how industrial he looks and looks like an Alex Milne drawing has just popped into life, he's so detailed and powerful looking. The two alternate modes of a sort of Scoprion digger and questionable spacecraft are enormous fun and this must easily be one of the best figures of the 2000s. Amazing.


Posted: Fri Feb 07, 2020 6:41 pm
by inflatable dalek
Will whip my chopper out tomorrow, but had to immediately tell Warcry I have his hero, IDW Spinister.


Posted: Sat Feb 08, 2020 7:28 am
by Warcry
You mean there's a special variant with a lot more spikes on his head? Neat!


Posted: Sat Feb 08, 2020 7:42 am
by inflatable dalek
Who need spikes when you have a double cock


That transformation is ridiculous.


Posted: Sat Feb 08, 2020 3:40 pm
by Warcry
It seems like a lot of effort just to replicate an obvious error in his box art from 30 years ago, but I suppose that's just how Hasbro rolls nowadays. And if they just had to slavishly replicate something, the box art was definitely a better choice than anything coloured by Yomtov.

I don't mind it too much, but then I'm hardly objective when it comes to Spinister...


Posted: Sat Feb 08, 2020 3:41 pm
by Skyquake87
Energon Unicron
Who needs a $600 figure when there's this version out there?! I was always fond of Armada Unicron but sold mine on some years ago. Having now got the blue and orange Primus from The Last Knight, I had a hankering for a Unicron. But one of the funny coloured ones. The green one is silly expensive, but there's a fair few Energon ones kicking around on the aftermarket, which look cool. In hand, I'm blown away by the dark colours with their smattering of neon green Energon line bits. The translucent orange looks awesome and I wish both his hands had been done in this, it looks soo cool. The blacks, olive greens and dark greys make Unicron look so much more deadly in both robot and planet mode. He looks way more threatening than the malformed basketball of the original. I'm very impressed. Dead End looks like he's gone mouldy and I think the brown original version would look better with this guy.


Posted: Sun Feb 09, 2020 2:51 am
by Tantrum
I like how Spinister's fake cockpit gives him symmetrical legs with an asymmetrical transformation. If they'd had the cockpit split to form the legs like on the G1 toy, they'd need something else to fill the gap in the body of the chopper. If they'd kept one leg the copter, and done the one that forms the copter body differently, the bot wouldn't look as nice.

I got Studio Series Mixmaster and Scavenger Both have the very alien looking bot modes I've come to expect, and demand, from SS Constructicons. I'm not sure if a unicycle is weirder than Hightower, but I like it. Mixmaster is comparatively normal, having very odd proportions.

I haven't been able to fit all of Mix's panels together to make the drum in vehicle mode, but I've only tried once. Turning him into Devastator's head requires removing the truck hood and reattaching it elsewhere. But, the way the inside of the cab unfolds into Dev's head is so nice, I don't mind a little partsforming. Plus, Dev's mouth is the perfect size for the Botbots pacifier.

Scav's alt mode is open in the middle, showing the spare wheel when viewed from above or behind. But, it looks enough like a motor to drive the shovel arm, which has 4 points of articulation, that I don't mind. I haven't tried turning him into Devastator's torso yet.

I stopped at 3 Walmarts and a Target this weekend, and none of them even had space marked of for SS Leaders, So, I bought Scav at a comic shop for $62 instead of the MSRP of $50. I was more worried about the all sales are final, no refunds or exchanges policy than the extra cash, but he seems to be in good shape.


Posted: Tue Feb 11, 2020 10:22 pm
by ganon578
Been a long time since I've gotten something new in the realm of Transformers, but I lucked out and found Earthrise Grapple!

Grapple was one of the few 'big' Transformers I had as a kid, and also one of the few survivors of my childhood, so he holds a special place in my heart. This new version is a nearly identical update to that figure (that can be taken good or bad, depending on your perspective). The transformation is so similar to the G1 version it isn't even funny. The truck looks great and has decent functionality, and the robot mode is fantastic. Articulation and balance are superb. His crane is finally back on his back, and you can swap his hand(s) with the quad-claw or a silver gun/nozzle. He's much superior to the bulky HFTD version. My only gripe is the quad-claw doesn't have a nice storage spot. Otherwise, if you can deal with the simplicity, Grapple is pretty great (at least in my opinion). I can see where many will think he isn't worth the $30 though.

Bummed I didn't find Starscream too, but I found I could order him through Hasbro Pulse with free shipping. So there's that.


Posted: Fri Feb 14, 2020 9:05 pm
by Clay
Tantrum wrote:
Sun Feb 09, 2020 2:51 am
I stopped at 3 Walmarts and a Target this weekend, and none of them even had space marked of for SS Leaders, So, I bought Scav at a comic shop for $62 instead of the MSRP of $50. I was more worried about the all sales are final, no refunds or exchanges policy than the extra cash, but he seems to be in good shape.
I found Mixmaster back in December and have only seen his wave mate, 2007 Megatron, since. Based on that, I expect to simply order Scavenger and Shockwave online, as I only expect to actually see Shockwave at the one store near me that still stocks leader figures, if at all.

Mixmaster is actually quite simple compared to his 2009 figure. I do miss some aspects of that one... most notably, the wide articulation of each of the cement barrel pieces. Studio Mixmaster seems to have omitted that in favor of sturdier parts for a better combined mode which, ultimately, is preferable.

I would like to see as many of the Studio Constructicons get alternate color redecos as possible, but not the G1 green/purple. We know we're getting Skipjack/yellow Rampage, and a white Demolishor version of Scavenger seems inevitable. I think what I'd like for Mixmaster is a mostly white with blue detail deco, based on one of his concept pieces. We'll see, I guess.


Posted: Fri Feb 14, 2020 9:57 pm
by Tantrum
Clay wrote:
Fri Feb 14, 2020 9:05 pm
I would like to see as many of the Studio Constructicons get alternate color redecos as possible, but not the G1 green/purple. We know we're getting Skipjack/yellow Rampage, and a white Demolishor version of Scavenger seems inevitable. I think what I'd like for Mixmaster is a mostly white with blue detail deco, based on one of his concept pieces. We'll see, I guess.
I just looked up Mixmaster on tfwiki to see if they had the art you're talking about. I saw a redeco of his first Voyager toy, which I think matches what you're saying. There's also an RPM with an orange drum. If we get a full set of redecos, I assume Overload would match Demolishor to create a consistent torso. Maybe Scrapper, Scrapmetal, and Hightower would be red like Rampage for matching limbs. Long Haul could be either red, for the same reason, or yellow for Payload.


Posted: Sat Feb 15, 2020 12:59 am
by Clay
Tantrum wrote:
Fri Feb 14, 2020 9:57 pm
I just looked up Mixmaster on tfwiki to see if they had the art you're talking about
It's in the Devastator collage. Not sure why, but it always stuck in my memory.

And yeah, I figure Payload would be the go-to redeco for Long Haul. Not sure about Overload, both because of lack of existing tangential recolors and because of how exactly he interacts with Scavenger in torso mode. They could always come up with something new?


Posted: Mon Feb 17, 2020 11:11 pm
by Tantrum
I honored Presidents' Day by exchanging pictures of past Presidents for Transformers.

Cyberverse Ramjet - This is one of those Scout with half assed transitional mode instead of a proper alt mode. I remembered reading that he could assume a true jet mode, but forgot reading about the cockpit being poorly shaped and looking bad. Also, the transitional mode is triggered by tabbing the alt mode into place, so if you want to have a normalish looking jet, it's going to be a bit floppy.

He's basically the conehead version of Slipstream in that he could've been a decent Scout sized version of the classic Seeker design if Hastak let him be that instead of this partial transformation nonsense.

Cyberverse Siesmic Stomp Grimlock - This Leader sized fellow has made his way to TJ Maxx and Marshall's for $20. His bot mode has a neck swivel, outward and forward rotation at each shoulder and hip, hinged elbows and knees, and upper arm rotation. The elbow hinges are oriented with the fist like movie verse Dinobots. The upper arm rotation allows forward elbow movement, but this means the fist holes are out to either side. Fortunately, he looks pretty imposing like this, ready to uppercut Decepticons.

Transformation is a little different than most Grims. The bot chest becomes the dino back instead of the dino crotch. This results in a hollow bot torso, which is mostly filled in by the dino torso. This Grim has a smaller bot backpack than most, at the expense of hollow spaces behind the bot shoulders. This isn't noticable from most angles, though. The bot legs still become the tail, but with the bot shins facing outwards towards the sides instead of up.

I'd expect an actual dino to have roughly equal weight in front of and behind the legs for balance. This Grim does not, having a dino torso is proportionally smaller than most Grims. The tail is large to accomodate the gimmick. Pushing a button in the dino back causes a blue lightning bolt looking piece to swing out of each side of the tail tip, knocking over Decepticons standing in the way before meeting in the middle. The tail can swivel a bit, and this does not affect the functionality of the gimmick.

In bot mode, the gimmick bolts are independent, each with a trigger behind the knees. I was able to use one to successfully knock down Ramjet, who I'd placed in front of Grim. This may be the most fun I have with Ramjet.


Posted: Tue Feb 18, 2020 12:40 am
by Denyer
Tantrum wrote:
Mon Feb 17, 2020 11:11 pm
Cyberverse Siesmic Stomp Grimlock - This Leader sized fellow has made his way to TJ Maxx and Marshall's for $20.
Seems fair. Don't think they made it over here (unless anyone's going to correct me; please do) but if I saw one in store for the equivalent in sterling it'd probably be an impulse buy. :up:


Posted: Wed Feb 19, 2020 10:41 pm
by Skyquake87
I've been dabbling in the Prime line again. I liked it, but thought the finishing left a lot to be desired and the figures looked a little plain. I skipped a lot of the Beast Hunters line, but the mad aesthetic and bright colours have some instant appeal, so here's some fun stuff I've picked up :swirly:

Arms Micron Nemesis Prime
Neat black repaint of the excellent Optimus Voyager mould. The stickers make it, as they always do with these AM figures. The wee drone is fun and makes a nice sword.

Dark Energon Bumblebee
I'd like more of these figures, but they're so expensive on the aftermarket now so I'll make do with this fabulous sparkly Bumblebee! He's great and I've warmed to the silly auto-morph, which seems to work better on this than the regular Prime figure I used to have.

Beast Hunters Ratchet
Horrible clashing colours; tan, white, orange, blue and lime green, but superbly horrible looking with a nice BW Dinobot type head. Bit of faff to get into vehicle mode.

Beast Hunters Bulkhead
Roadbuster themed deco of the portly warrior. Clever transformation, but I'm not sure about the slightly lazy bonnet shawl he has.

Beast Hunters Soundwave w/ Ravage
I like the colours, but the odd rubbery parts and weird black forarms are odd choices. He doesn't seem to peg together very well in drone mode, but looks good once you manage to get him together.

Beast Hunters Wheeljack
Nice spiked version of the character. With wings! Like Ratchet, he's a awkward to transform and get into vehicle mode.

Beast Hunters Bumblebee
Some sort of black stealth/ night version, which looks pretty hench! My version is missing the 94 missiles the figure comes with, which takes away from the impact of him looking tooled up, but he's cool anyway.

Beast Hunters Vertebreak
Ugly looking bird/ dragon creature. I like the shaping and bright colours, transformation is pretty basic - as all these Predacons are. Take monster. Stand monster up. Job done.


Posted: Sat Feb 22, 2020 3:39 pm
by HeavyArms
I've bought both Beast Wars Waspinator and his Transmetals form in the last month.


Posted: Sun Feb 23, 2020 10:33 am
by Skyquake87
Siege Crosshairs
Nice blocky robot that turns into a nice blocky van. The arms and head being obvious in robot mode are a bit rubbish, but he's otherwise very cool. I like him! Not so keen on the weapon he comes with, but appreciate it being able to turn into a hammer when it's out of ammo, so he can just blatter his enemies around the head with it.

Siege Spinister
Really rather lovely update of the G1 design. I like the eye searing colours and the overall look. Transformation is clever and I like the use of the two cockpits on his legs. Weapons are good, but I wish they's have just come in one colour. I get they're mimicking his absent Targetmaster chums, but having them in one colour would have balanced them out.


Posted: Sun Feb 23, 2020 4:45 pm
by Cyberstrike nTo
Siege Ultra Magnus. It was dumb luck that I found him and had the money to get him. Now don't get me wrong the Ultra Magnus from Combiner Wars is still pretty cool but I could never get him to hold his guns as guns. I like the how Siege UM feels very study and he can hold his guns as guns.

Siege Apeface. I've always had a soft spot for the Horrorcons and Apeface in particular back in the day. I do think his Robot mode is more balanced than his G1 counterpart. Hopefully we will get Snapdragon in Earthrise.

G1 Rumble and Ravage and Frenzy and Laserbeak the Walmart I bought these guys at one set each (now they have none) for $5.00 each and I had the money and bought them.


Posted: Fri Feb 28, 2020 10:13 pm
by Clay
Got a couple of sets of Micromasters in the mail yesterday from Hasbro Pulse (powertrain, high jump, blackjack, hyperdrive). They're cute. Thankfully the weapon modes can be ignored. Funnily enough, they included a flyer about giving me a free pack of trading cards from the card game, but forgot to include the pack of cards, lol.

After that, I thought I was done spending money on toys for the week, but no, a trip to the store on the way home from work yielded studio Scavenger, Shockwave, and earthrise Prime.

Golly, Scavenger's big. Despite having two existing figures (legends and voyager sized), he's mostly new ideas rather than recycling the engineering of the older designs. Had a fit of a time trying to get Mixmaster to connect securely. I guess that they'll both click into Overload to make the whole thing more sturdy. Devastator's gonna be heavy.

Haven't opened Shockwave yet, but I still think he's too purple.

Earthrise Prime is really wonderful. I don't think I've been so pleased with a G1 Prime figure since Robot Masters.