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Transformers Toy Review Archive (older series, 1984 to date)
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Zisteau's review of: Vector Prime

Name: Vector Prime
Allegiance: Autobot
Function: One of the Original 13/Protector of Cybertron
Sub-Group: Cybertron Planet

VECTOR PRIME is one of the first TRANSFORMERS. A powerful, wise and incredibly ancient warrior, he has served as protector over CYBERTRON since its beginnings. Pulled out of the shadows of time by a distress signal broadcast by his damaged planet, he arrives too late to save CYBERTRON without assistance. Arising from an era in which all TRANSFORMERS lived in harmony, he is unaware of the conflict between the AUTOBOTS and DECEPTICONS, a fact that MEGATRON uses to trick him and steal the map to the lost planets and the planet keys. Realizing his mistake, he joins OPTIMUS PRIME and pledges his knowledge and skill to the desperate quest to retrieve the planet keys before MEGATRON.

Vehicle Mode:
Vector Prime’s alt mode is a sleek looking futuristic jet vaguely reminiscent of a Star Wars X-Wing. There are lots of little intricate details to the mold, and the whites, golds, and transparent blues are bold and striking. I found the exposed clockwork gears (in gold) a nice contrast with the little artistic designs (also in gold). The strong angles and exposed gears also fit in nicely with Vector Prime's role as one of the oldest Transformers alive, and it is nice to see a lot of detail put into a figure that doesn’t interfere with the overall design. From the top or the side, it is hard to tell that it even turns into a robot. From underneath or from the rear, however, limbs are easily discernable.

Vector Prime’s sword fits neatly into the side of the jet. The minicon SAFEGUARD that comes with Vector Prime also fits snugly into a like-shaped recess in the top of the jet. The force chip the figure comes with fits into a slot behind the cockpit to trigger a pulsing-engine sound. A missile fits into the nose and can be fired via a small trigger on the top, just in front of where Safeguard attaches.

Robot Mode:
The robot form is every bit as striking as the vehicle form is. The white body looks almost ivory with the gold highlights, and there are subtle additions of blue along the shoulders, face, wings, sword, and chest concavity. Another nice touch are Vector Prime's armor, cape, and sword make him look like one of the Knights Templar, further emphasizing his antiquity. To top it all off, the robot mode has perfect humanoid proportions (in other words, it doesn’t suffer the monkey-legs or kangaroo-arms syndrome seen in figures like Crumplezone), and is one of the most original Transformer designs I've seen in the last few years. The poseability is above-average with 19 (or 11, depending on how you count) points of articulation, although none of them are ball joints, and the ankles are rather stiff.

Rotating the right arm at the shoulder causes laser blast sounds, or if you insert the force chip the sound changes to a variation of the vehicle mode sound. The laser blast sound is easily the best of the three.

Safeguard is like a miniature Vector Prime. In fact, their transformations are almost identical. The figure is rather simple (it is a minicon after all), but he has nice proportions, and I liked the asymmetry of the vehicle mode. Safeguard also fits on Vector Prime's forearm where he looks like a mounted gun.

Transformation: 4 – Quite simple, but effective.
Durability: 8 – Quite solid, especially in the absense on any ball joints. The thinnest part of the toy, the wings and sword, shouldn’t break because they are flexible. Whether or not they become permanently bent over time is another issue.
Fun: 9 – This is one of those rare figures that has both a great robot mode and a great alternate mode. Very well designed, great for display in either mode.
Price: 8 - Well worth the twenty bucks.
Summary: 9 – Besides the simple transformation and the fact you have to buy your own batteries, there really isn’t much going against this figure. If it had MP Optimus Prime styled ankles, it’d be almost perfect.

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