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Star Wars Transformers General Grievous [proofed]

Post by Zeeks » Thu Jun 05, 2008 1:21 am

Name: General Grievous
Function: Separatist
Sub-Group: Apprentice to Count Dooku

“The much-feared General Grievous has trained with the evil Count Dooku in the art of light saber combat. Using unorthodox fighting methods, such as a furious multiple-light saber assault, Grievous has managed to cut down several Jedi Knights. Now, Grievous changes into wheel bike mode to engage and destroy Obi-Wan Kenobi and the remaining Jedi.”

When I first heard about the idea of combining two of the greatest toy franchises in the world, I was very curious about the outcome and what the consumer would actually get for a toy. Would it be decent? Would it satisfy both the Star Wars Fan and Transformers Fan? Growing up on a steady diet of Star Wars and later migrating to the Transformers, they actually stayed with me to this day. So, I got my answer. Definite…maybe.

Maybe, you say? Yeah, maybe. We got some great ideas, with questionable execution.

To date, I’ve picked up six of the Star Wars Transformers, and the particular one I’m most impressed with is the subject of this review. General Grievous, a primary character in Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith, got the Transformers treatment, and the results are basically 50/50. There are absolutely fantastic things about this guy, and absolutely dreadful things about him.

Alternate Mode:
The alternate mode for Grievous is the wheel bike, which was featured in the Utapau chase sequence in ROTS with Obi-Wan. As the wheel bike, there is no discernible wheel nor any type of bike. (George, you need to name your vehicles better.) The length varies depending on the extension of the arms, but roughly it stays within the 6 to 8 inches. Now, a child playing with this really isn’t going to be able to do much except put it in various stationary poses while the other SWTF’s are flying through the air (with the help of your hand) since there are no wheels on the underside and the four limbs aren’t tight enough to stay in one pose very long.. So, on the playability scale, there’s not much you can do with it. Also, the tiny Grievous pilot doesn’t stay in his side seat very well. So, that’s the basic faults with the particular model. On the plus side, Grievous is incredibly detailed for a toy his size- character accurate coloring (the metallic with brown and tan overtones), and the pseudo main wheel has the teeth, made of a durable rubber that actually behaves more like a plastic. On the opposite side of the seating area is the main gun turret, which has a spring operated light saber that pops out a little too easily for me.

Transformation:
If I had to narrow this down to one reason alone why a child wouldn’t like this in terms of playing with it, it is definitely the transformation. It’s not mind boggling in terms of trying to figure out sequence, but it is very HARD to do. The limbs are nothing- easy as anything. The bike portion, however, is tough. In a nutshell, you divide it in half to make the halves join together on the back of the figure, but you need to pull them apart, and that is not easy. I’m not sure if it just happened to be my model, but I had to use a little excessive force to bring the initial halves apart, then fold up the other two divided halves to make them complete. You also need to be very wary of the position of three elements during this particular process- the side panels containing the seating area and gun turret, and most importantly, the “kick stop” (for lack of a better description). Also, trying to get your fingers in there is not easy either. To me, this is the worst aspect of the figure. Definitely could have been designed better, but I suppose cashing in on the idea of two successful toy franchises was more important.

Robot Mode:
Definitely, this is the best mode of the two, which is quite the reverse for the other SWTF’s I currently have. Of course, since Grievous is primarily a robotic figure anyways, it makes total sense to the success of the visual. The white bone plating on the chest, the incredibly detailed head sculpt, and the articulated hands and feet create an extremely handsome piece. So what’s wrong with this? The damned thing can’t even stand up on its own! In all the effort to articulate him, almost every limb, joint, and movable detail is completely loose. The hip joints, which are ball and socket, pop off without much effort. The hands barely grasp the light sabers or the turret which can be used as a rifle in robot mode. In every attempt to get the robot to stand, the legs do a complete split, no matter how you try to angle them. The only way I can get him to stand up is by propping him up against something. So the great price is paid: excellent articulation, not enough “figure” to even stand. If you take the limbs by themselves, you can’t help but admire the detailing. And it is great; I will totally give it that, but with the heavy weight on the back, these superbly detailed limbs just fall flat. In the “could have been, should have been” area, I would have liked to have seen the 4 separating arm limbs, as featured in the movie.




Transformation: 3. No child, whether 8 or 32 years old is going to have enough patience to fiddle with the bike wheel portion of this.
Durability: 2. Terrible- limbs fall off at the slightest touch, joints are the weakest I’ve ever seen on any transformer or action figure in general.
Fun: 8- as a display piece only. You can’t play with it, but if you are just looking for something to display, the detail will stand out enough to justify the “no-play” aspect.
Price: $15 U.S. Retail. Overpriced by $5 in my opinion, as many of the Transformers of the same exact size and range offer the same (if not better) features for the price.
Overall: Grievous Fan? Get him. Star Wars collector in General? Get him for the display criteria. Kid looking for something fun, interaction appropriate to age level combined with price? Don’t bother.

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(Request: If one of you nice pretty people wouldn't mind storing these images at the archive, I would greatly appreciate it. :) )
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Post by Zeeks » Thu Jun 05, 2008 6:21 pm

electro girl wrote:Boba Fett dose lend himself well to Transformers as do the clones but the jedi dont as they are not armored or mechanical
It irks me that all the Jedi are the same damned mold. And their limbs are extremely loose, making them hard to stand on their own, which is a community sickness for most SWTF's I've encountered so far.

I'm thinking of doing a review for Jango and was happy to see someone else's opinions on the mold in general.
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Post by electro girl » Thu Jun 05, 2008 6:47 pm

Zeeks wrote:It irks me that all the Jedi are the same damned mold. And their limbs are extremely loose, making them hard to stand on their own, which is a community sickness for most SWTF's I've encountered so far.

I'm thinking of doing a review for Jango and was happy to see someone else's opinions on the mold in general.
it is a good mold and you're right about the jedi molds, its just lazy there are three at least with the same one. obi wan anikin and mace windu and they just cant pull it off the way the seekers do. although the luke skywalker/x-wing bucks that jedi trend niceley
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Premium Barricade, Bumblebee, Blackout

Post by Clay » Fri Jun 06, 2008 1:52 am

n/t, more later

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Post by Clay » Sat Jun 07, 2008 5:27 am

Name: Bumblebee
Sub-group: Premium Series

Like a handful of other figures, Bumblebee has been re-released at the end of the movie toy line as part of the "Premium Series." The gist of the series involves giving the figures more detailed paint jobs, with attention paid to things like turn signals, license plates, etc. Bumblebee is a bit unique even in this small subset though as the figure includes a new head depicting the "battle mask" seen in the film and concept artwork.

Alternate mode:

Bumblebee's car mode is that of the new Camaro. Unlike the first release, the premium version includes smaller yellow pinstripes inside the larger black stripes, a painted bumper, and other small bells and whistles. The car itself pretty accurately depicts the Camaro: it has most of these smaller details molded into the plastic. It's only with the premium release that these details are incorporated into the deco.

Robot mode:

Bumblebee's robot mode is noticeably different from the previous release because the parts that were cast in black prior are now gray. Aside from this major change, a few minor details have been filled in: the centers of the shoulder guards are now painted gray, as well as the interiors of the legs.

The primary draw for collectors is of course the new noggin. It's not entirely accurate to the CGI design because of the vents over the eyes, but it does have a certain character of its own. Whether or not that 'character' is Bumblebee is in the eye of the beholder, however.

The design of the figure itself is flawless. None of the dangling car parts get in the way of articulation, and most critically, the waist is mounted on a ball / socket joint at an angle. While this sounds like a minor detail, it actually allows Bumblebee to be posed using the principle of contrapposto. Rather than standing perfectly straight like, well, a robot, Bumblebee can slouch off-center like the human frame Transformer robots are based on.

Also, the doors swing off the back like bumblebee wings. I think that's cool :-)

Transformation: 10. For a toy with two different modes that look nothing alike, swapping it back and forth is completely intuitive.
Durability: 9. Bumblebee is sturdy and nothing should break, but the shoulder pads aren't glued down and could get lost.
Fun: 10. It's like he just walked out of a movie...
Price: 10. For the retail price of $10, Bumblebee is well worth it.
Overall: 10. This toy of Bumblebee gets my vote for best transforming robot toy ever produced. Bumblebee has an accurate and detailed car mode, an enjoyable process to swap it to and fro, automatically-transforming parts that work properly, and a great amount of useful joints that can strike natural poses. The only deal breaker is perhaps the head, and whether you prefer it over the "normal" head. Even so, the extra detailing for the car mode should compensate.

I really like the little guy, and you probably will too.

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TFAnimated Blackarachnia [proofed]

Post by Transformer Kamen » Sun Jun 08, 2008 6:16 pm

Name: Blackarachnia
Fuction: Trickster
Subgroup: TFAnimated Deluxe Characters


"My sting will be the last thing you feel"

Blackarachnia started out as a promising young recruit at the Autobot academy. Accidentally abandoned on a hostile alien world by her teammates, she did the only thing she could–merged with the organic monsters that swarmed the caves in which she was trapped. Emerging as a technorganic mutant, she vowed revenge on the Autobots that had left her behind, and joined the Decepticons in their war of conquest.


Female transformers are rare, though their existence has been fairly consistent in Transformers since their first appearance in G1. However, the first female transformer to gain a prominent and consistent role in a series was Blackarachnia in Beast Wars, who also has the distinction of being the first female transformer to fight for the side of “evil”, though she later switched sides and became a valuable ally to the Maximals in Beast Machines.

TFAnimated’s Blackarachnia is a completely different character from her Beast Wars incarnation; however, her origin is remarkably similar, though mirrored–going from a valuable Autobot ally to a dangerous enemy. Unfortunately, her attendance in the series is spotty despite being a major factor in Optimus Prime’s fallout with Sentinel Prime and the Elite Guard in general.

Alternate Mode:

Blackarachnia definitely gives off the kind of creepiness one might expect from a beast based on an arachnid. The sharp angles and sweeping curves of the figure add a hint of danger to the mold. Downward curving spines draw the eye to the vicious looking (yet actually rubbery and harmless) pointed limbs. Sparse detail creates an organic smoothness to the mold, while sculpted layers hint at a mechanical origin. A small hourglass on the thorax set above a gold Decepticon symbol warns onlookers about the nature of the beast... as do blatantly obvious robot hands sticking out from the forward legs.

The color scheme is a nice mix of dark purple, black, and gold, with a bit of red for extra details like the eyes and the hourglass. Although simple in application, the paint is well done, without any sloppiness. My only complaint is the decision to make the mandibles solid purple rather than black and gold.

Like a lot of beast formers, Blackarachnia’s articulation in this mode, while much greater than vehicular transformers, remains confined to her legs and her mouth. Unlike most insectoid or arachnoid based beast modes, Blackarachnia’s four legs are quite sturdy and support her a good distance off the floor. The rest of her articulation is confined to her forward claws, which I imagine are supposed to be a surrogate for the legs she’s missing. However, they are far too short and not articulated in such a way as to allow them to be used as legs. It is also unfortunate that only one pair of the claws is really articulate, the other is made of soft, rubbery plastic and movable only by one swivel and hinge joint where it meets the body. The articulate pair is made from hard plastic, and as an additional hinge joint midway down the limb. Although not amazing, Blackarachnia does manage a few more poseablity options than her motorized brethren.

Blackarachnia’s gimmick is an “auto-retracting grappling hook”. The grappling hook is a black plastic base attached to a translucent red claw via a white string. The hook is actually tight enough to grab onto most sufficiently sized surfaces. Pressing the small button on the base once the string is extended pulls the base back to the claw. It works really well and can be attached to Blackarachnia where it, surprisingly, has no trouble pulling her along as well. The only problem with the setup is that the button must remain pressed to keep the line retracting. I think the device would look a lot cooler if it retracted all the way in one go.

Although not perhaps entirely faithful to the her show appearance, Blackarachnia does sport the only organic beast mode currently on the show (when she actually makes an appearance) which I think adds a pinch of interest to an otherwise decent but not fabulous alt mode.

Robot Mode:

Blackarachnia features absolutely no new colors in this mode, and the only new pieces of detail are her waist and robot head. Her robot head looks very close to her Animated counterpart, keeping even the extra set of eyes, and only lacking the more prominent lips. The paint on her head also shows a bit of sloppiness around her lips and nose–very minor, only a few errant speckles of gold.

Sculpting too, aside from the parts mentioned, is equivalent to her beast mode. However, there is an unfortunate clef between her neck and chest. A rather unseemly amount of cleavage which can only be hidden by bending Blackarachia’s head over, giving her a hunchbacked appearance.

Articulation is made largely by way of ball joints, and includes a swiveling waist which is not a part of her transformation scheme. Neither her hands nor her knees swivel, however, cheating her out of some natural looking poses. She also may have trouble balancing due to small feet, though this problem was anticipated and somewhat addressed by giving her and extra hinge on her mid-shin to allow her to widen her stance (a most excellent idea).

The grapple from her beast mode can also be used here. A slot underneath each arm allows it to be used as a weapon, though it looks awkward, and I’ve only been able to anchor it solidly on her left arm. The grapple can be stored on her back when not in use. Although not described on the package, Blackarachnia can also use her forward spider limbs as weapons by simply rotating the point on her elbows forward again. These points can also be used to augment her balance in robot mode for additional posing options.

With the one exception, Blackarachnia’s robot mode is quite solid.

Transformation: Fairly simple. The only trouble spot is rotating the mandibles as they have a tendency to pop off. They are also quite small so, parents, be aware of this choking hazard! Otherwise, it’s smooth sailing. 4/10

Durability: Aside from the mandibles (which are on ball joints) no other parts have looked like trouble spots, though I am concerned with the rubbery plastic used for a pair of the claws. I don’t think it’s the same puddy used for certain (Vector Prime) characters' swords, however. 7/10

Fun: Although there’s not a whole lot to her, being the only beast former and only female transformer on the show makes for some novelty. 6/10

Price: $10 USD. A fair price. 8/10

Overall: At best Blackarachnia is a mediocre figure. She has a solid beast mode and a decent robot mode, but nothing that makes her stand out. I don’t recommend her strongly to anyone who wouldn’t buy her anyway, but she worth getting eventually. 6/10
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blackarachnia.jpg
blackarachnia002.jpg
blackarachnia001.jpg

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Review of Animated Ratchet [proofed]

Post by zeoman4.5 » Mon Jun 09, 2008 6:50 am

Name Autobot Ratchet
Function Autobot Medic
Group TF Animated Deluxe

Hold still. This won't hurt a bit...

Autobot Ratchet was, at one time, one of the most promising medical minds on Cybertron. After his experiences with Lockdown though, all he wanted to do was disappear. An assignment to a deep space repair crew was just what he was looking for. He never wanted to be in the middle of a new war against Megatron, but if that's where fate puts him, he'll do his best to keep his comrades safe and sound.

It is the dawn of a new Transformers series. Animated is a very stylized, but
entertaining new TF series that mixes some of the best characters, concepts,
and legends from previous TF series with a new animation style and story.
The long-awaited figures have just started appearing on store shelves, and
are rapidly dwindling. One such figure is the Autobot Ratchet figure.

Ratchet's name sake comes from Generation 1, where just as today, its
Ratchet was a medic. Of course, being a medic for Autobots means he was
truly a mechanic and had a gift for repair. The original Ratchet was also a
a bit of a back talker, and liked to party. Fast forward twenty-three years,
and you have the next Ratchet of significance, the Movie Ratchet, who
served the same function. Now, with all this it's no wonder that Hasbro
decided to put a new Ratchet into the starting Autobot team for there new
toy line/show.

This Ratchet, as apposed to the others, is fairly older than the other
Autobots on his team. A veteran of the Great War, between the Autobots
under Ultra Magnus and the Decepticons under Megatron, Ratchet served
tirelessly for centuries. That is until he was sent on a secret mission to
save an intelligence officer under enemy fire. He managed to find her (Arcee)
and nearly save her, but interference in the form of Decepticon bounty hunter Lockdown caused him to have to wipe her memory, and thus her mind
in order to keep the valuable info from Megatron. After words, he became
very sullen and grim. He joined up with Optimus' unit to get away from the
past, but found more than what he bargained for when the AllSpark showed
up. Now he battles evil for the sake of his comrades, and to preserve life on
Earth from the evil Decepticons.

Alright, if you're still reading then you basically know Ratchet's character, now
on to the review.

Vehicle Mode
Ratchet's vehicle mode is a futuristic ambulance. It is basically what you'd
expect for his character and namesake. The overall look is streamlined, simple,
and tough. The most prominent colors are the milky white and maroon. The
design is far from spectacular. It is very simple, plain, nothing to it, but that
really fits the character of this guy very well. Being an older bot, means he
wouldn't be too concerned with being flashy, plain and efficient, thats how he
rolls. The windows on the ambulance are blue. Either transparent, as in the
windshield/flashers, or opaque, like the side and rear windows. His wheels are
all black and he has a set of yellow headlights and blue tail lights. The only
detail bits are the pair of pulse symbols on his sides and one large silver
Autobot insignia on his hood. There's also a winch, I think thats what it is...
The wheels roll well and over all he plays very well. His vehicle mode is also quite sturdy. Like I said before its not spectacular, or even special, but it fits and it has some good play value, so I like it.

Robot Mode
Ratchet's Robot mode is a bit more impressive than his vehicle mode. First off
he is a bit taller for a deluxe figure. The look of his robot mode captures the
essence of the cartoon character perfectly. Most of his parts are rounded,
giving him an appearance unlike most previous TFs. He looks his part well.
He has a bit of a gut, which although not exactly cool, fits with the older bot
persona. His face, the look on it is as if he's seen it all. Its actually a very sad
expression, a stern frown, down cast blue eyes, one of his little horns on his
helmet is broken. He is mainly the maroon/white combo from his vehicle mode
although the blue from the windshield on his chest and flashers on his
shoulders add some contrast. His Autobot insignia is now boldly showing on
his abdomen. His look and build fit his character perfectly, and are striking.

He has a good range of articulation, 22 points in all, including
moving fingers and a rotating head. He's kinda back heavy, but can be placed in a variety of poses. The only bothersome parts are his shoulder plates, which can get in the way of arm movement. He is a medic and as such
carries tool as opposed to weapons. He has a set of four: a wrench, a
hammer, a large flat head screwdriver, and lastly an enormous can opener.
Yes, that's right he has a giant can opener! I can't think of any reason why,
but he's got one. The tools lock into an opening in his hands with a peg inside
for the tools to latch onto. Each tool is large enough to serve as a weapon.
He can also store them in his back, which has a set of pegs inside. However
they stick out and are kind of annoying to deal with, I'd rather just set them
aside. He also has a bit of a gimmick. He has a strange looking hook-like tool
that folds out from both arms when you bend his elbows perpendicular to his
upper arms. What these are and why they are here, I don't know. These can't
be the magnets you see him use on the show. Unless these are halves of the
same magnet, in which case you'd be able to connect them, but his arms do
not bend like that. It's a poor gimmick, but at least they tried to put one in
there somewhere and didn't decide to just leave him with giant can opener
power. He also has a hole to connect the EMP cannon that comes with
Lockdown on to his arm. (It was his before Lockdown took it.) To sum it up he
is an OK toy for both display and play. His gimmick and tools are a little
weird, but he makes up for it in good design and character.

Marks out of ten for the following:

Price 8 He cost me $9.99 at my local Walmart, which is about right for
a deluxe figure.
Transformation 5 Entertaining and well thought out, but not very
challenging.
Durability 9 He seems very tough, his vehicle mode is quite stable and
his joints are strong but flexible.
Fun 7 He's got a good bit of play value and looks nice and stays true to character, but his gimmick and his tools (excluding the hammer) are weak.
Overall 7 He is not bad. In fact, he's a very nice Autobot, but just like
his character he'll come across as a bit rough until you get to know him.
If you are a fan of Ratchet, or of his namesake, then go for it. However if
you're looking for a warrior, or for a Big Bad Bot, maybe this guy is not for you.

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Post by zeoman4.5 » Mon Jun 09, 2008 6:52 am

This may be my last review for a while, being that I am moving soon.
I'm open to anyone who'd offer pics for this one. Thanks.

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Post by Clay » Thu Jun 12, 2008 3:28 am

Unlike her Beast Wars name-sake, this version of Blackarachnia is not actually a spider, rather she transforms into an organic “monster” that coincidentally looks like a spider with only four legs.
I looked at this one while I was in the store today, and it seemed like it had eight legs to me.

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Post by numbat » Thu Jun 12, 2008 7:39 am

I'm not too clear here - are the four smaller leggie things at the front not legs? Because, it looks to me that the chelicera (mandibles) would be the purple spikes sticking out the head (as they're on ball joints, maybe you could arrange as a 'primitive' spider i.e. tarantula [pointing down] or general spider [pointing towards each other], and this might avoid the rotation problems - I don't really know, as I haven't seen the figure in real life?). If they were legs, the only thing she'd be missing would be her pedipalps / arms at the front.

I am slightly disappointed that, even with all that, she's not a very good spider...

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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Post by Transformer Kamen » Thu Jun 12, 2008 11:50 am

numbat wrote: I'm not too clear here - are the four smaller leggie things at the front not legs? Because, it looks to me that the chelicera (mandibles) would be the purple spikes sticking out the head (as they're on ball joints, maybe you could arrange as a 'primitive' spider i.e. tarantula [pointing down] or general spider [pointing towards each other], and this might avoid the rotation problems - I don't really know, as I haven't seen the figure in real life?). If they were legs, the only thing she'd be missing would be her pedipalps / arms at the front.

I am slightly disappointed that, even with all that, she's not a very good spider...
I think the two black limbs toward the front are supposed to be legs, but even pointed down they're not sized right for her to stand on them convincingly (also, a few searches for pics of her beast mode, mostly on seibertron.com and tformers.com, didn't find any pictures of her using the limbs as legs either). Besides they're ridiculously out of proportion with the rest of her body if they are legs. So, I just think it makes more sense for the black limbs to be some form of pedipalp or claw rather than legs.

Do agree that her spider mode is not the best we've seen at any rate.

Edit: Added a few lines to the review at the end of the paragraph that begins "the grapple from her beast mode..."

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Post by Clay » Fri Jun 13, 2008 1:49 am

Blackout pictures.
Attachments
mov_blackout2_alt.jpg
mov_blackout2_robot.jpg

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Post by Clay » Fri Jun 13, 2008 1:49 am

Barricade pictures
Attachments
mov_barricade2_robot.jpg
mov_barricade2_attack.jpg
mov_barricade2_alt2.jpg
mov_barricade2_alt.jpg

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Post by Detective Barricade » Fri Jun 13, 2008 2:40 am

Barricade looks a LOT better!:D I'd pick it up, but I got the original, and the repaint isn't enough to really make me want to get another.:p
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Post by Treadshot A1 » Fri Jun 13, 2008 3:10 pm

I dont see the difference. Either way, bad mold.

Clay, great review! Glad i have all five deluxe BB's!
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Quickswitch [proofed]

Post by Cliffjumper » Fri Jun 13, 2008 5:58 pm

Initial draft was just the fragment "Quickswitch? Quickshit, more like..." repeated 200 times.
_____________________________________

Name: Quickswitch
Function: Assault Warrior
Sub-Group: Six Changer
"A confused enemy is a defeated enemy."

Completely unpredictable. Changes his mood as often as he changes his mode. Can be compassionate, merciless, friendly, hateful, happy, or angry, depending on what time of day it is. Equipped with 6 different modes: robot warrior, assault hovercraft cruiser, jet-propelled laser pistol, assault beast with stealth shielding, armor-piercing drill tank, suborbital fighter jet. Armed with twin photon blasters.

In 1987, Hasbro began desperately began adding whatever gimmicks they could think of to Transformers - Headmasters, Targetmasters, Clones, Duocons, a Double Spy... No idea was too ludicrous for the hapless execs charged with recovering from the commercial suicide of killing off Optimus Prime and replacing him with a boring, moping version of Hot Rod. One of the ideas they came up with was for a Six Changer. Never mind that the Triple Changers had been a mixed bunch, and that most of the figures with just one alternate mode were pretty poor, we were getting Sixshot anyway.

Hasbro were never ones to let a bad idea die, so as well as getting a 1988 line full of smaller versions of Headmasters and Targetmasters, we also got a second - similarly smaller - Six Changer, the Autobot Quickswitch. The character got his own animated commercial, but made little impact elsewhere, his appearances limited to being the straight man to Darkwing and Dreadwind in a single, five-page UK strip, and being in a Ladybird storybook.

A version with a different colour scheme was released in Japan as Sixknight, appearing in a bit of alleged Transformers Anime series Super-God Happy Teenage Awesomeo Power Bukkake Gaijin Masterforce. He stands out a bit through being a Transformer. Surprisingly, TakaraTomy haven't selected him for Encore yet.

Alternate Modes:
So, Quickswitch has five alternate modes. Something that complex obviously requires some sort of compromise so the engineering and flexibility can actually work. Some figures concentrate on a single alternate mode, and then have a second one added largely as a bonus. Some result in two slightly flawed alternate modes. The compromise the designers of Quickswitch opted for is all five modes are utter shit.

There's not really a huge amount of point going through the modes in particular detail - look at the pictures, you can see exactly what's gone wrong here... My example is missing one of the photon blaster rifles, but I seriously doubt this is taking much away. The puma looks like a road accident; the jet is a flying brick; the gun is the hovercraft mode with the lasers stuck on the front and a weak excuse for a handle on the bottom... The closest to success are the drill tank and hovercraft modes. The former is let down by a main body that looks like what it is - a pile of surplus parts. The latter achieves the relatively lofty status of just being poor - there aren't any massive design faults, it's just ugly. Hasbro also overcame the problem of finding a colour scheme that would work for six diverse modes by picking one that looks equally awful on them all - a horrid turquoise/red/pale grey collision.

Robot Mode:
It's not like they even got the robot mode right either. Considering most Transformers suffer to some extent in robot form due to the nature of their alternate modes, it's no real surprise that Quickswitch reflects his five weak disguises - it's a compromise form that fails to succeed. There is a certain amount of charming blockiness to him if you look at him from the right angle and distance (i.e. side-on from about three hundred yards). But it's all wrong...

The head has a giant hinge underneath it, the legs come out of his hips (giving him a comically large groin, while the giant, blocky shoulders just make the arms look silly. He doesn't even have real hands - the puma's paws are just flattened onto his wrists. There is a fair amount of articulation due to the multiple moving parts - hips, knees, shoulders and elbows - and the all-plastic toy has good enough balance to make use of it. The only problem is that posing him only serves to highlight the bad design of the robot mode.

Transformation: 1 - None of the modes are close to taxing, most being largely reliant on turning the toy over.
Durability: 10 - He's a block of plastic. You hit someone on the head with this, they will die.
Fun: 1 - Excluding using him to bludgeon people to death, after the curiosity and general amazement at just how poor Quickswitch is has passed, you will never look at him again.
Price: 1 - He costs a couple of pounds. Sure, that's cheap compared to a proper Transformer, but you can get a house brick for around the same, and at least those are practical.
Overall: 1 - Everyone involved in the design, production and release of this figure deserves to be herded into a hole in the ground, and have the world's supply of unwanted Quickswitch figures (that's all of them) emptied onto their heads. Absolute rubbish.
Attachments
quickswitch_alt5.JPG
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quickswitch_alt2.JPG
quickswitch_alt1.JPG

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Cliffjumper
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Post by Cliffjumper » Fri Jun 13, 2008 5:59 pm

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Civ
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Post by Civ » Fri Jun 13, 2008 6:02 pm

Question, if it's sturdy enough to be used as a murder weapon, shouldn't it have a higher durability rating or are you just highlighting its crappiness with all ones?
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Thanks, Zeeks! Great job! :up:

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Cliffjumper
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Post by Cliffjumper » Fri Jun 13, 2008 6:05 pm

Whoops, missed a zero :) Well-spotted. But it's not signed George, it's dedicated to George. Gentlemen, the King!

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Clay
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Post by Clay » Fri Jun 13, 2008 6:50 pm

I remember my grandmother getting this for me at Toy Liquidators in what must have been 1989 or 1990. It was good for fun for a seven-year-old; just a toy to play with. As an adult, I can look at it and see it for the crap that it is, though.

However! I would contest this:
Durability: 10 - He's a block of plastic. You hit someone on the head with this, they will die.
The head on mine broke off within a couple of years. I guess I had tried to turn the head, but it snapped off instead. So feel free to give him a 1 if you wish :)

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