Tag Archives: Autobots

Beeside – Combiner Force Bumblebee and Sideswipe (Robots in Disguise)

I took a chance on this set, and boy is it not very good. In the Generations line, we went through the Combiner Wars, so it makes sense that Robots in Disguise would try to follow suit, by bringing us Combiner Force. The execution is not very good robots, not very good cars, and not very good combining.

First off, the cars. We get Bumblebee and Sideswipe. I cannot imagine these two getting along as a Combiner, but we will go with it for now. The vehicles are about the same size as the Legion scale vehicles. They are similar in design, but it is clear that they are NOT going to transform anywhere near as well as the Legion scale.

The most notable change are the large black squares with green arrows. One is on the nose of Sideswipe, and the other is on the tail of Bumblebee.

Let’s look at them transformed into robot mode. Ugh! These are terrible. Bumblebee has a flip up head, feet, and fold out arms. He has no articulation except for the side swing of his shoulder joints, and I don’t think that even counts. Sideswipe has a similar transformation, except that his legs pull apart.

From vehicle mode, you stick the two black boxes together. The spoiler of Bee’s car flips up to make a chest, and the hood separates to show a new head that is somewhere between Bumblebee and Optimus Prime. He gets joints at the elbow this time, with 5mm ports to hold weapons in his hands (though he does not come with any). Bee’s part is spring loaded. Sideswipes body has to be separated manually, by pulling his legs apart. And that is what you get.

He has articulation in his elbows and that is all. I think he is somewhat better looking in this mode, now being more interesting, but he is far from the cool looking art we get on the front of the box, where the red and yellow are combined.

Looking at the different scales of Bumblebees, you can see over at the left, the Legion scale. Next comes the nearly identical scale of the Combiner Force, followed by the Mini-Con (Commander) scale, and finishing off at the Warrior scale.

Overall, this is not a good Transformer. It is totally gimmick based, and not a very good gimmick at that. Only half of Beeside actually pops open. The player still has to manually transform the bottom half. I am a huge fan of Transformers, these two being #654 and #655 of my collection. This is nearly the most disappointed I have been with a Transformer in the whole collection. I was not expecting much, and I have stayed away from the 1-step and 3-step Transformers, but I was expecting a bit more with this set. There are a few more sets coming out in this series, but I am going to skip them.


Transformers: Titans Return Deluxe Class (Part 1) Autobots Blurr and Hyperfire / Furos and Hardhead

Now we begin to get a glimpse into the world of Titans Return. The Legends Class figures didn’t really have a whole lot to do with Titans Return on their own, but with these Deluxe Class figures, we really get idea of how it is all going to work.

We are going to look at the first wave of the Deluxe Class. Today we are going to look at the Autobots. We get two Autobots and two Decepticons in this set. Or if you want to get technical, four Autobots and four Decepticons, since the Titan Masters are aligned with a team.

Now we begin to get a glimpse into the world of Titans Return. The Legends Class figures didn’t really have a whole lot to do with Titans Return on their own, but with these Deluxe Class figures, we really get idea of how it is all going to work.

We are going to look at the first wave of the Deluxe Class. Today we are going to look at the Autobots. We get two Autobots and two Decepticons in this set. Or if you want to get technical, four Autobots and four Decepticons, since the Titan Masters are aligned with a team.

Hyperfire and Blurr:

First off, Hyperfire and Blurr. These two were teamed up back in 1987, when Hyperfire was a Targetmaster weapon for Blurr. They took cues from the original Blurr to create this one, with some nice upgrades to bring him into the modern era of the Transformers.

It is a bit strange that the larger robots in this series cannot be sentient on their own, since the Titan Master is required as the larger robot has no head of his own. That would have probably been a much better touch, if they could be separate.

Blurr is amazing looking. The details are outstanding, with lots of good articulation.

Hyperfire is the standard that we are going to see with the Titan Masters. They unfold from the head into a tiny little robot. They have shoulder swivel as well as hip and knee swivel. They can stand as well as sit, both legs out, or legs folded depending on the weapon they are going to be driving.

In vehicle mode, Blurr is very much like his G1 version. The colors are very similar with the darker blue and light blue at the front. He has a cockpit for Hyperfire to use, and there is even a port on the front for his hand gun to become a weapon for the vehicle.

The nose of Blurr’s vehicle comes off and flips over to become a weapon for Hyperfire to use. This is also something that is seen through the line. There are usually two parts that fit together to create a riding weapon for the Titan Master. Many of them are usable in both robot and vehicle modes.

Furos and Hardhead:

Furos and Hardhead look like a formidable team. Hardhead (ironic name, since he doesn’t have a head) looks very strong and well armored. Furos matches in appearance, though much smaller.

Along with a hand gun, Hardhead also has a back mounted cannon that can move up and become a shoulder mounted cannon.

Transforming Hardhead is straightforward, and really fun. All of the first four Deluxe figures have transformations that are well designed and create some great looking vehicles.

Hardhead becomes a four-tread tank. The cannon becomes a much bigger looking weapon in tank mode, since it stretches the length of the tank.

Furos gets the choose here. He can either drive in the spacious cockpit, or the cannon can transform and allow Furos to ride in a seat from a high position.

These first two Autobots are outstanding. I am really looking forward to the rest of the line. The designs are clean with really sharp molding. The figures are reminiscent of their G1 counterparts.

Next up, we are going to take a look at the Decepticons.


Wreck-Gar – Transformers: Generations – Combiner Wars: Sky Reign

Wreck-Gar was originally supposed to be a part of Sky-Reign, even going so far as to have early box art that said as much. If you know the Combiner Wars line, Wreck-Gar can be used as a chest shield on Defensor, like Groove did in an earlier release. It seemed funny to do that, since there is no way to actually attach Wreck-Gar to Sky Reign’s chest.

Wreck-Gar is a retool of Groove. A retool in so far as a repaint with a new head attached. Not a whole lot of a retool there. The paint work is great, and really makes WG look quite different from Groove.  After getting Wreck-Gar for the first time in 2011 with a nearly flawless figure, a Legends Class figure is not a great way to follow it up. The robot mode is okay.

The Legends Class figures are better than the Legion Class figures, which are just way too small and lack the articulation. These figures at least have elbows and knees, and have some fun transformations.

I cannot say that this looks a whole lot like a motorcycle. It is a bit more like a giant scooter. I think it was probably pretty hard to get something in this scale to look like a good motorcycle. Leave that to the larger Deluxe scale from now on. Though we are going to potentially see this reused as Rust Dust for Victorian, and Override if you are after some of the Japanese releases.

Overall, I have been so happy with the Combiner Wars line. It has been very successful. With only a few hick-ups along the way, it is a great line.

And a side note.  Don’t join the Combiner Wars if you don’t have a Combiner to attach to…


Wheeljack – Combiner Wars – Sky Reign

Autobots to build Sky Reign? But I am not done finding the Decepticons to build Bruticus yet! Gah! Well played Hasbro, well played. At least we are seeing Combiners from both the Autobot and Decepticon sides, so this will end up being one epic battle.

Today we are looking at Wheeljack. A G1 favorite for sure. We have seen a few different iterations of him over the past few years, from the Generations version, to the Prime version. Through it all, they did a pretty good job of trying to stick to the original. Hasbro did a bit of a better job with this version over the last Generations version, since this one stands taller, and the feet do not look super oversized.

He lost his wings over his shoulders that they have been pretty consistent with since the beginning, but they did a good job with the head sculpt, remembering to give him the exaggerated cheek/ear pieces.

He comes with a gun/sword, which is a reuse, and not one of my favorite weapons. It is a good choice for him, since his last two issues either saw him holding a gun or a sword.  His requisite hand/foot gun can be held in his hand, or it can be attached to a hole in his back.  I am so fond of being able to attach the giant weapon to the body and get it out of the way.  For most of the figures, the gun is unwieldy large, and does not look good.

In car mode, they did a lot of retooling to get him looking more like the G1 Lancia Stratos. It has that long front end, rounded canopy and a spoiler at the back. The red and green are a lot brighter than the original, but still within the realm of how the original looked.

Hasbro did a good job with many of these cars to allow the Combiner hand/foot to attach to the cars and not look terrible. Since Wheeljack is a heavily modified Sunstreaker, it is no surprise that the hand/foot attaches to the roof to act like a giant secondary turbo engine.

Overall, this is another really good nod to the G1 counterpart. He looks good as a car and a robot, and the fact that he becomes a Combiner’s arm or leg does not detract from his overall appearance, which is something that Hasbro has done very well for the most part over the length of this line.

Up next is one more Sky Reign Deluxe figure, and then I will be back on the hunt to complete both Sky Reign, and Bruticus.


Protectobots 2 and 3 Packs (Evac Squad and Emergency Response)

I got these on Amazon for a super low price.  I am glad is was so low, because most of them are terrible.

Protectobots 3-Pack – Emergency Response

First Aid, Groove and Streetsmart.  These three Protecobots are repaints of Prime Series Figures.

 

First Aid: A repaint of Ratchet (Prime), he is no where near as dynamic a character as the original.  I was really excited to be getting a first version of Ratchet, as the original has some great transformations.  He looks okay in vehicle mode.  A little bit white.

Here is where things really fall apart for First Aid. Firstly, he is very white. He has the same detail paints as Ratchet, but with them all being blue, he is a very stark white color.

The real problem comes with his legs. For some reason, when they made First Aid, they remade the knees in rubber instead of the hard plastic. What we end up with is a very drunk First Aid. He cannot stand up straight, or he starts to sag under his own weight. Ugh!


Even his knives are wonky. They were shoved in a section of the box that was too small, so the tips are bent.

Nothing beats the original.  He is better in all aspects.

Streetsmart:

This was the guy I was really after in this set.  I love Smokescreen, and I was so happy when we finally got him under the Beast Hunters subgroup.  And then we got another version of him as Prowl with a new head.

Well, following the police theme, Streetsmart has Prowl’s head.  Just like with First Aid, Streetsmart is awfully white.  He has just a few touches of blue here and there.  Some red really would have helped him out a lot.

Boy is Streetsmart white.  Even compared to the mostly white Smokescreen, it is apparent that even a few touches of color here and there would have helped a lot.  I mean come on! Even the G1(1986) version of Streetsmart had red on him.

Groove:

The worse of the 3-pack.  A repaint of Arcee, this is basically just Arcee with some white paint here and there.  When “He” is transformed, it is really just Arcee.  The Legion Class figures are the smallest and generally the lightest on detail, but there were parts on this one that were falling off.

The entire cowling of the motorcycle on Groove’s back fell off.  It was missing something to hold it in place.   No wonder I passed on the Legion Arcee the first time around.

There you have it.  Streetsmart is pretty good, if not a little too white, First Aid is a drunk with wobbly knees, and Groove is a lady-bot. Even with all of the problems, you can’t beat the $12 on Amazon for these three.

Protectobots 2-Pack – Evac Squad

Hot Spot and Blades.  These two could not be more different from one another.  Hot Spot (Repaint of Grappel) is a big burly crane truck.  Meanwhile, Blades (ROF Blazemaster) is a skinny little helicopter.   I think the problem with this 2-pack that was better in the 3-pack is that these two are not from the same Transformers lines.  One was from the Generations line, while the other is a movie figure.  It starts to really show a difference when they are in robot modes.

Hot Spot:

I am a huge fan of the Solar Storm Grappel. He sits on my nightstand in my bedroom. The only Transformer with that prestige.

I was excited to get my hands on another version of him, as the Generations blue Hot Spot is still eluding me.

This version of Hot Spot is really close to the original except for the crane instead of a water cannon. I think a guy named Hot Spot should be a fire truck, not a crane, but oh well.

Blades:

We had a great version of Blades back in the 2008 Universe series. This is not that Blades. This is a horrendous attempt to get a helicopter, and they reused Blazemaster, who was a horrible robot too.

Just look at this guy. Top heavy, with a sunken head, arms with no hands (though he does have thumbs), and chicken legs with little toes. Not even the blades on his arms would decide which direction they should face. This is NOT a quality piece. He is being transformed back into the helicopter where he will probably remain for the rest of his days.

Hot Spot, win.  Blades, lose.  At least this set only cost about $13 on Amazon, and it looks like the price is going down.  So $13 for a Voyager Class Hot Spot is pretty good all things considered.

 

So, if you see something you need, head over to Amazon.  They are both being sold for less than half the price, and it makes for good deals if there is one you really want in each set.  Just be warned, they are not great sets, and there are some real stinkers in here.


Slog – Transformers: Age of Extinction

Well, we continue to get some new Dinobots that never made it into the movie.  This time around we get Slog, a larger Voyager Class figure.  He is very large and in charge.  Strong and bulky with a lot of the medieval armor look that we have seen with the other Dinobots.

Take this knights of ole’.  Slog comes with two lances, and he doesn’t even have a horse to ride.  I like how strong he looks.  Big thick legs, and great armor layered all over.  His face/helmet is really cool with lots of details.  There are a lot of rubber parts on him that could pose problems in the future if they are not taken care of properly.  He is the color I think they should all be.  Some of the other Dinobots are outrageously bright. This grey/black combo with touches of red are really well executed.

I found his transformation to be very difficult, and his chest area when turned into the Apatosaurus would not stay in place.   The directions were to change Slog from the dino into a robot.  So, for the initial transformation, you had to reverse the directions, which is a terrible way to present this anyway.  It will be near impossible for kids to make this transformation on their own.   I also don’t like the giant balls that hang out on the sides of the neck where the lances can be attached.  There is a lot for me not to like in this mode.  I am going to keep him in robot mode from now on.

We might as well take a look at him with his lances and side “guns” attached.   One of the guns on mine is loose, so it will not stay up very well.   The lances coming out at head height is a bit weird visually.

I think he is a good fit with the other T4 Dinobots.  It is funny because his coloring is how I think all of the Dinobots should look, but with him in the grey color, he gets lost in the Skittles of Dinbots.  They should have made him yellow, and then we would have had a complete rainbow of Dinobots.


Transformers: Age of Extinction – Dinobots (Strafe, Scorn, Slug)

Today we are going to look at three of the new Deluxe Class Dinobots.

Strafe – 

Strafe is a flyer in his dino-mode.  In robot mode, he continues with the medieval armor appearance.  The two beast heads work in the front to create strong shoulders and a pretty good look.

This Strafe is from the Toys R Us Exclusive that comes with a Mini-Con of the same figure (a redeco of Swoop).  It is the same Strafe figure, but just with a little extra.   There is one other out there as well, I think it might be Slug.

Talk about your epic pose.  I sure hope we get to see Strafe do this in the movie.  How bad-ass does he look with his wings out?  Pretty sweet.  You can really get a sense of the great armor he has.  The gauntlets on his forearms are awesome, as are the very strong looking legs.

And then we get to his dino-mode.  A two-headed pterodactyl.   This once again makes me question the reason to deviate so much from a standard dinosaur.  Ah well.

There is a lot of articulation in the wings that allow for some pretty good poses, instead of having to stick to the strait wings we get a lot of times.

 

Scorn –

I really like the overall design of Scorn.  His beast mode is pretty fantastic.  From the tall sail, to the long tail, to the head that moves back and forth.

I don’t love it when Transformers only have one usable hand.  I would rather like to see a second hand rather than a tail for a hand, but if you are going to be one hand short, at least his tail is huge and makes for a great weapon.  And what is better than one weapon?  Two weapons.  His tail hides his sword that he can use to make a little extra trouble.

Dinobot Slug –

Who ends up with a name like Slug?  I expect to see this guy sleeping through the whole movie.   He is a pretty good interpretation of a triceratops.  Only a few added parts to give him a little AoE extra.

I think Slug really shines in robot mode.  Strong and powerful is the name of the game.  Two swords wielded in very strong hands.  He looks to be quite a force.

There you have them, the first three Dinobots.  I still haven’t seen any Decepticons.  They have all be Autobot from the get go.  Of course we don’t really know much about the enemy from the trailer.  We know they are coming to eradicate the human race, but who are they?  Guess we will just have to wait and find out.


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