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Transformers Toy Review Archive (older series, 1984 to date)
Robot Mode:
Alternate Mode:
Box Art:

Clay reviews Devastator

Name: Devastator
Function: Windbag?

Patience paid off, and I picked up the big version of Devastator at 60% off. I'm not entirely sure if I waited long enough.

Alternate mode:

Devastator divides into six vehicles, making him a hexacon. Unlike any previous Devastator toy, the individual components do not have robot modes. These were apparently omitted for concerns of cost and of weight and balance, but because of the suggested price tag of $100 and the figure's difficulty with standing on two tiny legs, I'm not convinced.

The obvious defense is that the vehicles are fun on their own, but that's bunk. Scavenger (the big shovel) has a hole in its bucket preventing it from holding anything. Long Haul, the dump truck, can't tilt the bed. Hightower, the crane, doesn't actually have a hook on a string allowing for actual crane activities. Scrapper (the small shovel) can't tilt its bucket because of the way it forms the hand for the robot. Mixmaster, the cement truck, can't turn its barrel. The only vehicle that can actually do what it's supposed to is Rampage, the bulldozer, which can indeed push things around. One out of six isn't bad, eh?

Robot mode:

The combined mode of the vehicles is the mighty Devastator. It's certainly a large contraption, big enough to fit a deluxe figure in its maw, but not so much larger than previous Supreme class figures like Unicron or Primus that it would warrant doubling the price of the size class.

The big problem is balance. Devastator's components are different sizes, roughly that of Deluxes, Voyagers, an Ultra, and a Leader. Naturally, the two smallest components are the legs, putting all the additional weight above them. This makes getting the thing to stand in any position a tricky affair because you have to counterbalance the arms with all the weight on the back of the figure. The problem makes it difficult to actually place anything in its articulated claws.

Of course, Devastator has few play functions aside from being big anyway. A tab in its chest simultaneously raises and opens its head while activating random sounds. That's about it. Its right hand can't actually open or close to grasp anything because the wheels are in the way. The left hand can open and close freely, but can only hold things with difficulty because of the aforementioned balance issues. So, yeah... you can open and close its mouth while it makes noises.

The back end of the robot reveals where the designers went home early. It's a big red box with a Mack truck stuck on top. I mention it mostly because of the total visual contradiction it creates with the molded detail on the front the figure and the movie style in general. And as far as the look of the figure goes, if you think that between the price tag and the lack of individual modes that you're getting a lot of detail to make up for it, think again! Painted details are largely omitted in favor of... something? I don't see it.

Transformation: 1. Nothing to see here.
Durability: 10. Can't actually fault the thing here. It's solid as a brick.
Fun: 2. It is big and can open its mouth.
Price: 1. I'm not entirely sure it was worth it for $40, let alone $100.
Overall: 1. Devastator is useful if you want to make a diorama with Legends class figures, but not much else. You're simply not getting the value the for money compared to the nine or ten Deluxes you could get instead.

Come to think of it, Devastator is the perfect Revenge of the Fallen toy. It's big and loud. It lacks important details. It has balance issues. Its individual components are lacking detail and are a bit slapdash when considered by themselves, even before regarding the larger form. And considering the final product, most of these shortcomings were obviously ignored in favor of meeting a deadline. It's a waste of time, basically.
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