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Transformers Toy Review Archive (older series, 1984 to date)
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Blitzwing's review of: Brawl (deluxe)

Name: Decepticon Brawl
Function: Demolitions
Scale: 1/85

"DECEPTICON BRAWL is built for one thing, and on thing alone Ė destruction. His programming has been gripped for as long as he can remember by a rage so deep and so hot that he feels little else. The only thing that allows him a few moments of happiness is the fury of combat. There is nothing so sweet to him as the thunderous noise of his shells bursting against the armor of a faltering AUTOBOT."

With the announcement of a Movie and that one of the characters was going to be a tank, Brawl went straight to the top of my Ďto getí list. We finally have a tank transformer that looks brilliant in both modes.

Robot Mode: Originally a background character that appeared in season 2 and occasionally said something cool, Brawl seemed a bit of an underrated chap in the cartoons seeing as how swindle got two episodes about him. Being a combiner the figure wasnít really much to shout about either. Now in 2007 we have the new super-duper Brawl, ready to blow stuff up in a computer generated way. Brawl is an imposing figure despite only being a 6Ē deluxe class: With a Cannon/Gatling gun on his right arm and a blade that would give Wolverine a run for his money on the left, armoured chest with spiky bits sticking out atop a pair of chunky legs, weaponry mounted on his back and the turret posing as a back pack of sorts. The tracks coming over the shoulder is a great look on this figure, as well as the dual cannon from the second turret sticking out over his head (possible G1 Onslaught homage?), finished off with red light-piping eyes to give a menacing glare.

Green is the colour of the day in Brawlís robot mode, with black on the upper legs, body, arms & feet, Gold highlights on the arms, legs and head with silver details on the head and weapons. 15 points of articulation give this figure good poseability, with joints at the shoulders, neck, 2 at the elbows (twisting & bending), hips, 2 at the knees (forwards & sideways) and the toes. Another great thing about this figure is that there isnít any uneven weight distribution so a variety of poses can be made, although the Cannon barrel can get in the way depending how you leave it. There is, however, one gripe; the shoulder have a tendency to pop out every now & then as the peg isnít quite as snug as it could be in the locating hole.

Alternate Mode: Believe it or not, Brawl is a tank, and possibly the best tank mode of any character from the Transformers series. Typical tank setup of hull, tracks, & turret, with an additional 2nd turret sporting light cannon & RPG launchers, complete with some form of mine clearing devices on the front of the hull. It is definitely the most realistic, detailed and well proportioned tank mode when you compare it to Warpath, Blitzwing and G1 Brawl. Colour scheme here is two-tone green camouflage, with black tracks & fuel tanks, and black & silver detailing on the RPG launchers. The moulded-in detail is very good in this mode too, giving us hatches, vents, armour plate joints, wheels etc. The main cannon has a missile-launching feature, allowing you to fire a small translucent red projectile. Absolutely no kibble is visible in tank mode apart form the feet at the rear, but itís forgivable as it looks like some sort of ground anchor thingy. Both turrets rotate independently in tank mode, but no up or down movement for the guns. The RPG launchers can point in all direction thanks to ball joints.

Transformation: Isnít too bad with this figure, the first time is a bit challenging and you get a couple of "um....." moments, but after the first couple of transformations I managed it fine. Whoever designed the transformation of Brawl should be given a medal as it is simply superb. The rear half of the tank forms the legs, the front of the hull forms the chest, and the arms are concealed in the turret. The result of this brilliant transformation means that there is no bulkiness or limited movement of the robot mode except for a slight restriction depending how you set the arm cannon. Automorph feature on this figure causes the front of the tracks to rotate up over the shoulders, and the head to fold up out of the body. The only gripe about this is that Hasbro (in their infinite wisdom), MISSED OUT a part of the transformation which I discovered whilst messing around. When the track armour is folded back to the rear of the tank, the instructions just leave it there, but by applying slight pressure underneath the tracks you can fold them back out of the way a bit. This gives an even better appearance to an already great figure.

Marks out of 10 for the following:
Transformation: 9/10: Brilliantly designed, and great fun.
Price: 9/10: having purchased it from the States, currency conversion meant I only paid about £6.
Durability: The plastic does look like cheap flimsy stuff, but it is very durable and doesnít bend or break easily.
Fun: 8/10: Great alternate & robot modes make this figure fun either way.
Overall: 10/10: If you like tanks, then buy this figure. A fantastic addition for any collection.

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