Titans Return Misfire ***Proofed Skyquake87***

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Titans Return Misfire ***Proofed Skyquake87***

Post by Warcry » Sat Jan 27, 2018 3:45 am

Name: Misfire
Allegiance: Decepticon
Size Class: Deluxe
Accessories: "Aimless" Titan Master, two ion particle blasters.

Aimless gives Misfire an ultra-powerful ion particle fireblast. Unfortunately it does not improve the low-grade targeting skills of Misfire. When they unite, Autobots and Decepticons go running for cover.

So once again, here I am reviewing a new figure of a childhood favourite. Misfire has the distinction of being the very first Transformer I ever chose for myself and bought with my own money, right after my fourth birthday. He was also my second Transformer ever, only being beaten out by Lightspeed a few days earlier. Over the next few months I accumulated a good-sized pile of Technobots, Targetmasters and Terrorcons, and I was hooked! I actually have fuzzy memories of my mom asking me a couple times if I was sure this was the one I wanted Wouldn't I rather have a good guy, or one who wasn't bright pink? But Misfire's jet mode was wicked cool and his bio (which I'm kinda surprised I actually understood at that age) sounded fun, and the rest is history.

If you'd told me five years ago that in 2018 I'd have a new Misfire toy perched on my desk, I'd have been pretty skeptical. The most I would have ever expected was maybe FunPub doing a halfhearted repaint with a bad new head. But a mainline Deluxe with a new mold that's 100% accurate to the original figure? There's no way I would have believed that. The fact that he's hanging out with a new Triggerhappy, Hardhead, Doublecross, etc. who are all just as spot-on accurate? That would have blown my mind.

In retrospect, the original Misfire is on the short list for the best G1 Transformer figure. With great proportions and nearly modern levels of articulation, he teased me with a level of figure that I wouldn't see again with any regularity until Beast Wars rolled around nearly a decade later. So a modern toy of the guy? It would have to be pretty good to live up to the high bar set by the original. Does it?

Robot Mode: Misfire is technically a retool of Titans Return Triggerhappy, but the only parts they actually share are the legs (which were patterned after Misfire's original toy), the Titan Master's robot mode (all of which are practically indistinguishable anyway) and the elbow and shoulder joints. So in spite of the technicality of their release dates, I tend to look at Misfire as the "original" figure out of the two and Triggerhappy as a "pretool" who just happened to come out first (in much the same way that TR Sky Shadow came out before Overlord, even though the figure was always intended to be Overlord). Because Misfire's robot mode is just about the perfect representation of the character.

About 80% of Misfire's body is an intense shade of pink. Off-white and black highlights keep that dominant colour from becoming overwhelming. He's got a few very complex tampographs on his legs and wings, throwbacks to the stickers that came with the original figure. I'm not entirely sure they look "right" on modern figures, but since I know those old stickers so well, those tampos really push the nostalgia button. The mid- and late-run Decepticons featured some really wild colour schemes, and Misfire is one of the wildest. It's one of the things that, for me, made Scorponok and Thunderwing's henchmen so much more memorable than Megatron's and Galvatron's. And the Titans Return figure does a fantastic job of capturing that.

Misfire features better than average articulation for a modern figure. In particular, his double-jointed shoulders, knees that can bend almost 180° and feet with long, independently poseable heels and toes make him a very lively figure. He's also got a waist swivel, ball hips, thigh swivels, bicep swivels, standard elbows and a ball-jointed neck. He's probably more fun to pose than any other Deluxe I've bought in the last five years, with mold-mate Triggerhappy coming in a close second.

The 80s Misfire figure was a Targetmaster -- a Decepticon whose gun transformed into a smaller robot sidekick. The new figure is not. Instead, his tiny robot partner is a Titan Master who converts into Misfire's head. There's been some controversy about that, because a lot of fans are quite fond of the Targetmaster gimmick. I'm not too upset to see it gone, though. Targetmaster minifigures have never been especially convincing guns, and the twin rifles that Misfire comes with -- which can combine into a "gunsled" for Aimless to ride in -- are a lot more convincing than a little guy bent over at the waist with a couple barrels sticking out of his ass. But if you're partial to Targetmasters, there's no need to be upset -- the Takara version of the figure has you covered!

The other thing that's caused a bit of controversy is that the figure is based on the 80s animation model rather than the toy or more modern IDW designs. The differences are fairly minor all told, but the biggest point of complaint is that the cartoon/comic Misfire had a fairly plain, boxy head. While I prefer the toy look myself in a vacuum, I honestly think Hasbro made the right call here. When your figure's head is made up of a little guy folding into a box, having a boxier head means that his silhouette isn't ruined but limbs sticking out from behind the faceplate like poor Hot Rod or Astrotrain. The other thing that people don't talk about is that the animation model had Misfire's jet nosecone sticking up over his shoulders, instead of just flipping it out of sight behind his back like the old toy did. The spiky nosecones and canard wings are a really nice addition to Misfire's upper body silhouette, and I'm glad Hasbro went the extra mile here to have him transform that way.

This might be a first, but I can't come up with a single thing that I don't like about Misfire's robot mode!

Alternate Mode: Misfire's jet mode is even pinker than the robot mode was, but the large blue cockpit serves to break it up nicely. He's also got quite a few small, detailed paint apps and tampographs. Quite a bit more than I'd come to expect from a modern Hasbro toy, actually. The lines of the jet mode are futuristic and aggressive, but still looks like something that would probably fly pretty well in the real world.

Aside from his opening cockpit, Misfire doesn't have much in the way of Titan Master compatibility. He has two foot pegs behind the cockpit, though I'm not sure any Titan Masters are going to want to ride on the back of a jet in fight. He only has two 5mm peg holes, in positions under his wings that would make it very difficult to attach any of the smaller TM figures' weapon modes. However, the prongs at the front of the jet mode are perfectly spaced for picking up stray Titan Masters (which young me always enjoyed having Misfire do when he was harassing Autobot Micromasters). It's a lot harder to make a jet cross-play compatible than a tank or a car, though.

The only real failing the figure has in this mode is that his arms aren't particularly handled very well. I think they're meant to double as engine nacelles, but they're not camouflaged very convincingly. They also don't peg into place very securely. Aside from that, though, Misfire's jet mode is a gem!

Titan Master: Normally this section is a big "blah blah blah TMs are all the same", but Aimless actually looks great! He's got three shades of plastic instead of the usual two, as well as a painted face and painted eyes. The figure itself is still exactly what you'd expect, with useful articulation at the shoulders and neck along with legs that are fused together but do have hip and knee swivels. But the premium paint job really makes him stand out from the crowd of bland, unpainted little robots everyone else seemed to come with after the first few waves.

Transformation Design: Although Triggerhappy has more of a "wow" factor, Misfire's transformation is quite creative in its own right. A lot of parts move in unexpected ways, but once you actually start transforming him, it's all very intuitive. 9/10

Durability: Misfire is quite sturdy. I worry a little bit about his wings when I transform him, but unless you're very rough on your figures I don't think you'll have any problems. 9/10

Fun: It's impossible to be objective on "fun", and obviously I'm a bit biased, but I've enjoyed Misfire more than any figure I've bought in ages. 10/10

Aesthetics: Dark pink robots may not be for everyone, but this one definitely works for me! 10/10

Articulation: Wrist swivels would be nice, I guess? Maybe a bit more range at the elbows and neck? I'm picking nits here. Misfire's pretty great. 10/10

Price: I bought him for regular retail price and he was available around me for quite a long time. But if you're one of the unlucky folks who never got Titans Return Wave 5, you might not be able to say that. He's actually good enough that he's worth a few bucks over retail, but hopefully the aftermarket prices don't get out of hand. 7/10

Overall: I don't think I've given out this glowing a review in the last five years, but this figure is everything I could have wanted in a new Misfire, and more. The Titans Return line had more than its share of great figures, but I think Misfire was the best of the bunch. 9.5/10

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Post by Warcry » Sat Jan 27, 2018 3:46 am

Jet mode pics.

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Post by Skyquake87 » Sun Jan 28, 2018 11:25 am

Great review - Misfire is excellent. I wasn't completely sold on all the pink. Knightdramon bought one at TFN2017 and having seen it in hand, I had to track one down when I got home. And I'm glad I did :)

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