Monthly Archives: November 2015

Pachy Zord – Power Rangers Dino Charge, Dino Super Charge

The Pachy Zord is based off of the Pachycephalosaurus, you know the one. The dino with the big bone dome. Well, this time around he is wearing a hardhat and swinging a mace by the tail. This version is a recolor of the initial grey version from the show. This coloring is a nod to the Power Rangers Dino Charge Cephalazord. Ironically, they used the same dinosaur for both Zords, but they just used a different part of the extremely long name.

When the #8 charger is inserted into his mouth, the wrecking ball flips off of his head. Slide the swivel down his tail, and you have a very long reach.

He combines with the Ptera Charge Megazord to create the Ptera Charge Megazord: Pachy Formation. They used to have such awesomely long, convoluted names for these formations, but they have been simplified for Dino Charge.

When he is in Pachy Formation, the new arm is extremely long, and drags on the ground. Probably not the greatest design, but it does give the Ptera Charge Megazord a LONG reach.

These three Zords have a body in common.  They all have separate tails, and top heads.   The legs of the Pachy Zord are the same as the Raptor Zord.  The paint is really well done, as it seems to be with all of these figures.  We are starting to see the Super Charge Zords hitting shelves now.  It has been quiet for a while, with only the Ptera Charge Megazord coming out most recently.  There are going to be plenty of choices here for a little while.

Hot Wheels 2016 Collection is hitting shelves…

The 2016 Hot Wheels have started to hit the shelves.  Once again we are not done with 2015, but like real cars, we have to move on before the year the model is released.  This time around, they are doing away with the overarching themes and going a bit more personal with smaller collections.  They have badges to go with each set of cars.  Some of them are going to be pretty good sets, while others will be total passes for me.  I will point out a few of the sets I am looking forward to, and then there will be a list of all badges at the bottom.

Mild to Wild – This one should be a lot of fun.  Find the car in a street version, and then look for the muscled up version.


Then and Now – One of my favorite sets from the past… as long as I can find both the “Then” and the “Now.”


Muscle Mania – Can’t go wrong here.  Muscle cars are the best!  4 New Models!


HW Showroom – Usually a great list of classics.  6 out of 10 are New Models!

HW Exotics – Porsche, Lamb0, McLaren – This is the line to find all of your super fast street cars… though no Ferraris this time around.

Night Burnerz – I always look forward to the Night Burnerz, usually Japanese type cars.  This time around 6 out of 10 are going to be New Models!

Speed Graphics – We usually get some pretty good paint schemes with racing decos on these guys.

Hot Wheels Race Team – Can’t go wrong here.  There are some good race cars coming out. Corvette C7.R and the SRT Viper GTS-R.  There will be a few HW designs in there that I will skip.

Super Chromes – I will wait and see on this one.  They could be pretty good looking all chromed out.


The rest of the list.   Not a lot new going on in the rest of the series.   We do get the Batman V. Superman Batmobile that will be pretty fun.  The rest of the Batman line is repaints, and probably some dumb paints at that.  How many Classic TV Series Batmobiles do we really need?  There is a 1973 BMW that will go with the 100th Birthday line of 5 cars.  Flames is a complete repaint team with flames painted on it.  The X-Racers are back with clear bodies. Then there are some of the most dreaded.  Street Beasts…ugh!  More cars that look like animals.   There are some Dino Riders that are also animal themed.  Then there are the cars that have tools attached to them.

We follow those up with fairly vanilla offerings.  Video Game cars, Solar/Electric vehicles, and a smattering of real-world vehicles in Emergency and City Works.  Once again we get to see some airplanes squished down in size to fit on a card.  We have snow racers and trucks, daredevil vehicles, and cars painted to look like art.  Let’s not forget the new found love for attaching Minifigs to our Hot Wheels in the Ride-Ons set, though some will be excited about a new Minecraft car.  We finish off with Glow Wheels that will be pretty fun to watch go around the track in the dark.

We follow those up with fairly vanilla offerings.  Video Game cars, Solar/Electric vehicles, and a smattering of real-world vehicles in Emergency and City Works.  Once again we get to see some airplanes squished down in size to fit on a card.  We have snow racers and trucks, daredevil vehicles, and cars painted to look like art.  Let’s not forget the new found love for attaching Minifigs to our Hot Wheels in the Ride-Ons set, though some will be excited about a new Minecraft car.  We finish off with Glow Wheels that will be pretty fun to watch go around the track in the dark.



Master Chief with Cloak

Still looking for that Master Chief with Cloak figure?  Look no further than your favorite discount retailer.  As we continue to toward the holiday season, the toys are filling the wasteland that was the toy department at the likes of Ross, TJ Maxx, and Marshall’s.  I found John-117 here at my local Ross last night.  They also had the other Master Chief that came in this two figure wave.  I had him already, but the $9.99 tag on them is fantastic.  You could army build for that price, but who needs so many Master Chiefs?

As with most everyone else, I agree that it is what is under the cloak that matters the most.   He is a great figure.  The cloak makes him pitch forward, and does not lend itself to a very good figure for display.  Take it off, and you get a pretty great Master Chief.  He has really good articulation, and two grasping hands.    He comes with the Boltshot pistol that is huge and badass.   He also comes with Cortana’s dogtags in a secondary hand.  The cloak fits tight to his body, so the backpack comes as a separate piece that you slot in after removing the cloak.

This is right up there for me, for the best of the best Halo figures in the 6 inch scale.  He has the articulation we want, but more importantly, the paint is great.   It is dark, the way it should be, and he looks ready for action.

Keep your eyes out for deals at the discount retailers.  You never know what you are going to find.

“Maybe I can find a working Cortana at Marshall’s.”

Pacific Rim – Horizon Brave

Horizon Brave, one of the first Yagers constructed. It is armed with shoulder-mounted Cryo Cannons. On the toy, they deploy with the press of a button. We don’t get a lot of spring loaded firing in this day and age. And to get one on a figure that looks this good is really great.

Since Horizon Bravo is a Mark-1, he is pretty bulky. Built in China, he has two Chinese pilots. In the beginning sequence of the movie, you can see Horizon Bravo being built, and there was at least one more behind it, on the production line. There could have been other sister Yagers out there that we haven’t seen.

Horizon Brave will be launched in about a month from now on Dec. 22, 2015. In a novel, it teams with the famous Gypsy Danger and the newly minted Striker Eureka in Nov. 2019 to take on a Category IV Kaiju Only one cat V has ever been seen, so that means the Kaiju they were fighting was pretty darn big.

Overall this figure is fantastic. Just what you would want from a Pacific RIm figure. He is robust with lots of good articulation, and the added bonus of firing missiles. He is a little top heavy, but not too bad with the well designed legs. Let the battle begin!

Planes: Fire and Rescue toys on sale…and looking good.

In the need for some Planes: Fire and Rescue cars? Look no further than the secondary market stores (Ross, Marshalls, TJMaxx). It seems that the holidays have descended upon us. Now I am not happy about seeing Christmas stuff next to the Halloween stuff, but I am always happy when the new toys start hitting the shelves to get ready for the windfall that is the Holiday Season! And where better than the low cost alternatives that sometimes have toys that miss the primary market.

Like Pulaski here. He was in a 4-pack, and you either bought the 4-pack for an exorbitant amount of money to get yet another character you already bought in the single pack, or you didn’t. Well, looks like the power that be, over at Disney wanted to make an extra buck by putting him out by himself. And out he came, and cool he is.

There seems to be a secondary flow of all of the land-based vehicles. Along with Pulaski here, the Smokejumpers are out in force. Avalanche with his lack of voice modulation.

Drip, who loves watching old TV shows with his friends.

Even Prop Junction’s own Chug is making an appearance in all of his flat paint glory.

Dimension X Space Battler Raphael – Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

Yeesh! I sure am glad I only grabbed one of these Dimension X figures. They are seriously weak! I decided to grab Raph. I am not sure what made me choose him over Leonardo, since he is usually my go-to trial figure.

These figures come with space gear, clearly for going into Dimension X. They are a standard figure with a new belt, and space gear (helmet, arm bands, hand things, and leg do-dads). They also come with futuristic weapons… or their same weapons with a tech flair to them.

The main problem lies in the execution of the Space Gear. Of course that is all there is to the gimmick of these figures, so that is pretty bad. The accessories are very bulky, and make the figure stand weird. The real problem is with the helmet. It just doesn’t fit. It seems like they used a body mold that is just too small to fit. In the pre-production photos, the heads are centered in the helmet, but in reality, the heads are way down low.

They used the Battle Shell version of the figures, which are a bit smaller than the original figures, and that could have played into the problems. If you look closely at the back shell, you can see the hinge. It doesn’t open, since the belt wraps all the way around.

Overall, not a good figure. The parts fall off easily, the figure stands weird, and he just looks off. It is best to save your money for some of the new figures coming up that look to be much better. There is also a big pack that comes with the Turtles in this gear, but it is chrome. It looks to have the same problem with a shiny package.

Post 500! My how things have changed…


6 years and 499 posts ago I started this little page.   It was always meant to be a look at toys.  From reviews to just out taking pictures.   Over the years it has grown and changed a lot.  Here are some of the stats that have blown me away:


Views from 125 different countries.

Top 5 Most Used Tags:

  1. Transformers (168 times)
  2. Hasbro (65 times) though I should have used it more often.
  3. Marvel (Probably most in the recent year or so with so many Legends figures)
  4. Generations (A long span of figures from that Transformers line)
  5. Transformers: Prime (There were a LOT of figures over the course of the show)

Top 5 Most Tagged Figures:

  1. Optimus Prime (Not a surprise, except I thought Bee might be higher)
  2. Bumblebee (Second only by a few posts)
  3. Iron Man (We have had lots of Tony over the years from Legends to MiniMates)
  4. Megatron (I was a bit surprised Megs was so high, but he just keeps coming back)
  5. Wonder Woman (I was surprised she was so high on the list.  Lots of Ame-Comi figures)


Over the course of 6 years, I went from collecting a few things, to collecting a lot.  I had an old shed in my backyard that I converted into a Fortress of Solitude.

Laying the last of the shingles on the new roof.

I was able to make this the place to keep all of my toys.  Safe, protected, and out of the way of my wife.

Since then, I have also upped the ante on camera.  From humble beginnings with a tiny digital camera, to the much better Canon Digital SLR I am running around with now.  I used to throw a camera in a backpack and go, and now I actually have a special backpack to keep the camera safer from harm.

Many of my early posts were pictureless.   It was a time of figuring out what I was doing.   I had the most posts I ever made in my first year 2010, but I also had the smallest amount of visitors.  As I found my way, I also needed to add more pictures, so I sought out Flickr.   I started my Flickr account about a month after I started this blog, and boy are the stats over there huge.  I think it really tells something about pictures being worth a thousand words.   My views over there are 1.3 million views, with 4327 pictures being posted.

The early stuff was not good.  Too dark, and very static.  It was a steep learning curve.   The biggest thing that helped me to get better at pictures was to look at other people’s work.  See what they were doing that I liked, and ask questions.   Now I can take a well lit picture.  So my focus is moving on to getting better dynamic lighting.  I have people I follow that take some of the best photos I have ever seen. They inspire me to be better and do more.

At some point daylight clicked and I took my toys outside to shoot.   Boy did that help.  But of course, then the setting was a bit weird.  Can’t keep taking pictures of Transformers on the deck. Something had to get better, but that was not going to come for a long time.  For some reason I was stuck on the figures, and didn’t focus on the background.

The reality of making better photos came in small steps.  I made a photo booth out of PVC pipes.   I added opaque fabric to allow for diffused light.  I then bought a fold-up photo booth to again boost my photos.

What really hit home was this summer.   I started to play around with backgrounds.  I started to experiment with insulation foam.  From there, I had to up my lighting game.  The results were night and day.   I wasn’t just taking pictures any more, now I was telling stories.

Did you know toys could be posed?  Boy did it take me a long time to come to that realization.   I was always a guy who loved to take the toys out of the packaging.  They are meant to be played with, not kept in the boxes on a shelf.  Well, then I would just stand them there and take pictures.  What better way to talk about their articulation than to actually show them in motion.

It was really a way of thinking that needed to change.  Even to the extent of ” I am going out somewhere?” “Bring a toy, because you never know where you might end up to take pictures.

So, 6 years and 500 posts in, and I feel like I am just getting started.  I have finally found my stride, and I am ready to bring it on!  I have a new big diorama I am working on, to help get away from the alley scene.  I have a few other ideas in mind too.  I have started to carry a blank book around with me to write down my ideas.  Going back over the past 6 years of pictures, I feel like I have done some of my figures a disservice, and I want to make it up to them.

I leave you with a funny stat that surprised me.  4327 pictures, ranging from Marvel to Transformers, from anime to cartoons.  And the photo with the most views, far, far, far beyond second place was this picture of a Monster High doll:

This was some fun I was having while my sister came to live with me.  We bonded over toys and photography.   This picture was taken a year and a half ago and has over 5,800 views as of today.  Something about a lady riding a motorcycle I guess.

Up next, a look at a figure that is no good.   I was glad I only picked up one of the wave.  Don’t need a whole shelf of that garbage.

Until next time my friends.  There are pictures to be taken and stores to be searched.

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