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Transformers Toy Review Archive (older series, 1984 to date)
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Kremzeek75's review of: Scorponok

Name: Scorponok
Allegiance: Decepticon
Function: Headmaster Commander
Sub-Group: Headmasters
"Kindness is no virtue... and cruelty is no vice."

Despair and isolation are all that remain in his wake. Believes the poor should be exploited, the weak oppressed, and the noble corrupted. Others' pain is his sole pleasure. In scorpion mode, tail shoots 100,000 volt electric bursts, has twin pulse blasters, claws can crush mountains. In defense base mode, has over-the-horizon radar, communications center, anti-aircraft sonic cannon, repair bay, construction bay; semi-autonomous armored interceptor with dual photon cannons that patrol the base perimeter. In robot mode, has fusion-powered anti-gravity gun. Binary-bonded to Lord Zarak, leader of the evil Nebulans.

Perhaps the largest American Decepticon ever made, the first incarnation of the name Scorponok is the most fearsome, articulated, and remembered Scorponok. Towards the end of the original G1 toy run from Hasbro (only superceded by the Action/Micromaster lines), Hasbro had introduced an entirely new concept to the Transformers: Target Masters and Head Masters. To tie in with the G1 Cartoon, a new race of aliens called the Nebulans had found a way to merge with Transformers, becoming either a weapon or an actual Transformer Head. Scorponok was one of the latter, and his Head Master counterpart was Lord Zarak (see data above). Scorponok also had the sole distinction of replacing Trypticon as the general Decepticon headquarters, and if you remember the size of Trypticon, that was no easy feat.

I recently had the opportunity to purchase a loose but complete G1 Scorponok, and I liked the toy so much, I wanted to review it. Scorponok came with the following pieces: Lord Zarak, Fasttrack (a mini attack tank/robot), anti-gravity gun, tower/shield, orange elevator assembly, 2 orange mechanical repair arms, 4 radar dishes, 4 shoulder gun mounts, 2 silver sidings used for Scorponok's legs, and one giant robot/scorpion/base.

Base Mode:
As the new Decepticon base, there will be several comparisons here to Tryptcon, as Trypticon was the only other Decepticon to have the same function toy-wise. Like Trypticon, Scorponok featured a small little buddy named Fasttrack who could be catapulted from the center of the base by means of a spring fire mechanism. With his legs outstretched as base platforms, Scorponok can lift smaller Decepticons via a manual elevator that is attached to an inner compartment of the thigh. The other thigh features two mechanical arms as a means of possible repair for his fellow Decepticons. I found these two thigh features moderately useless- only a transformer the size of Laserbeak can be manipulated on the elevator, and the mechanical arms can't really access any notable Transformer; they are perhaps better described as décor in base mode. Whereas I could fit quite a few of the smaller Decepticons on Trypticon, I do not find that accessibility on Scorponok. However, the base is laid out in proper fashion with a major Tower comprised of Scorponok's Pincer Shield, and two minor towers comprised of his arms. There are also ramps that extend from the outermost points of his legs that nothing larger than, say, a Stunticon can access. For added detail, there are also numerous mini-cannons and gun turrets that make Scorponok in Base mode a rather fearsome adversary.

Vehicle Mode:
Why, a scorpion, of course! And quite an imposing one at that. Scorponok's arms feature highly detailed pincer claws, and I was able to place smaller transformers into them for the whole "yikes, I've been captured" vibe. His scorpion legs (4 on each side) actually move as you roll Scorponok onwards into battle by means of smaller wheels located on the underside of the scorpion. These wheels trigger an "up and down/back and forth" motion of the legs. Since Lord Zarak is not in head mode during either the base or scorpion mode, he can sit nestled into a compartment all his own. The compartment in itself reminded me of the chest compartments that the first assortment of Insecticons had, albeit this one was on a much larger scale. The Stinger holds position in whatever way you choose, but does not look particularly venomous.

Robot Mode:
Of course, this is my favorite and most grand mode of all. Lord Zarak folds into Scorponok's head and is inserted in the slot, and by means of lifting up a plastic flap, you can see three of his main tech specs (this was a feature with all Head Masters). Scorponok carries one huge mutha blaster, and the pincer shield is placed on the other arm, making him almost reminiscent of a Trojan warrior when you add the helmet shield over Lord Zarak. Height-wise, he is about 3-4 inches taller than Trypticon in dino-mode, and if you remember how big of a brute Trypticon was, you can imagine this guy as well. As far as my personal gripes about Scorponok, there are only 3: the lack of room for other transformers aforementioned in the base mode section, the Scorpion tail, and size. Specifically in regards to the tail, it's just not big enough or very imposing-looking. Basically, you have this huge Scorpion Body, and the tail seems so minute. I was so glad that Hasbro corrected that oversight in the future incarnations of Scorponok, particularly in the Beast Wars and Energon lines. Regarding size, it is more of a comparative feature for me: Trypticon and Metroplex were arch enemies (holding the same functions) and were of equal size. Scorponok's arch enemy is Fortress Maximus, and if you have ever put the two side by side, Scorponok pales in comparison size-wise. Either Scorponok should have been bigger, or Fortress Maximus should have been smaller, but alas, we are talking 15 years ago. Even with these small features that I do not particularly care for, I can still live with Scorponok.

Transformation: 7 - When I bought Scorponok, he was already in robot mode, so I had to download directions from to figure out the exact transformation sequence. Once I did it, it was relatively simple to go back and forth between modes on my own.
Durability: 8 - Strong plastic was used in the mold, and the only things that would occasionally fall off were the shoulder-mounted gun turrets and the Silver shin plates.
Fun: 9 - I played with Scorponok for hours the night I got him. If there is any indication of how much fun I had, let me tell you I was late for work the next morning. That was fun.
Price: 6 - Since I never had Scorponok upon original release, I don't know how much he went for retail. Today, I paid in the area of $150 for a loose but complete specimen. Is that worth it to you? It was for me.
Summary: 9 - Great piece, I thoroughly enjoy displaying him and transforming him, and I'm glad I had the opportunity to purchase him, even though he had a considerable price tag on him. Scorponok definitely gets a "yey" vote from this transfan.


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