Tag Archives: Dark of the Moon

Autobot Drift – Voyager Class (Age of Extinction)

A Voyager class of a Transformer car?   Ummmmmm, nope.  This time around, we go way off the tracks and create an all new Autobot Drift.   We cross the color scheme and the head of the Age of Extinction Drift, and then mount it to Skyhammer’s body.  “A helicopter?” you ask.  Yup, a helicopter.

At least he got some big swords to still look like a samurai.   I think he is actually a really cool version.  In fact, it would have been really cool to see him in the movie.   Maybe there wouldn’t have been so much death on the Autobot’s side.

The Voyager Class version is a lot larger than the Deluxe version we got the first time around.  Their colors match perfectly.  The new Drift is on the body of Skyhammer, who I thought was really well done the first time around back in 2011.   That version was for Dark of the Moon, in which the character also didn’t appear.  Funny that this body would make two toy releases for figures that weren’t in the movies.  Ah, well.  They could do their own thing, and it is still a great figure.

These two make good bookends to one another.   They look different enough, but they still have a lot of similarities.   I really like them together.  They are almost like twins as opposed to two versions of the same figure.

Turn them both into vehicle mode, and you have every rich man’s dream of a matching car and helicopter.   They fit so well together.

I really do like this redo of Drift.   I think it would have been better if they had done the same as they did back with Skyhammer and just make up a new figure.   They don’t really have a lot of figures to go with for this movie, so making an expanded universe would have been a little better.  We are also getting a new Dinobot, and he is coming up soon.

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Transformers Prime: Beast Hunters – Shockwave

Shockwave.  Generally quiet, and somehow more devastating than Megatron.   In his Prime version, he looks very much like his G1 version.  A giant cannon for one of his arms, and the single eye..  He has antenna all over the place.

He has a gimmick in his cannon.  I wish they would just stop with all of this gimmick crap, but I guess Hasbro feels the need to do so in order to sell the larger toys.  When the grey button is depressed, the front portion of the cannon spins around.  The centrifugal force of the spin separates the two sides of the cannon, showing the inner workings within.
Not the worse gimmick I have seen, but it does leave that arm a bit rattly.  You know, when you move him around, that arm makes some noise, and it moves around.   Not the best for play time.

And of course, since we are in the realm of Beast Hunters, there has to be something beastly about him.  I am happy to report, just as with Smokescreen, you get a second version of Shockwave.   The three extra “Beast” parts fit into small holes on the body that really do not do anything to detract from the overall appearance of the standard version of the figure.

As with Smokescreen, since we did not get him the first time around with the standard Prime figures, it is nice to be able to choose which version to be able to display him in.  The chest piece looks okay.  The shoulder armor is a bit off, and gets in the way of raising the cannon.   It looks much better in vehicle mode.

Just in case you were thinking, “Golly, he looks big.”   He IS big.  He stands nearly a head taller than Megatron, which is saying something.  Don’t tell Megatron, but Shockwave’s gun is bigger too.   Add in those great solid legs and you have quite a figure.   And when I say solid, I am referring to the nearly hollow legs of Megatron that is wide open in the back.  His lower half is so light.   Not so with Shockwave.  There is even a bit of extra weight as his feet have to do some pretty cool tricks to get into his vehicle mode.

Yet again we are going away from the silly notion that a giant robot could somehow manage to transform into a small handgun.  Let’s go with a tank again.   A little reminiscent of the Dark of the Moon version of Shockwave.  The tank has a very aggressive style that I think looks really good.

He has a rather unique transformation.  He is laid out on his back.  The front part of the tank are his legs, splayed out, with his chest as the part that holds it all into place.  One arm wraps under the body, while the other is of course the cannon.  The back tread of the tank are his backpack.  The tread is unique in that there is actually rubber tread back there that can be taken out to attach to the cannon as a belt fed system.   In vehicle mode, it looks really good.  They could not get something like that to move, so they do have to have wheels under the tread.  It is hidden really well, and along with the fat front tires hidden up front, he actually rolls pretty freely.

Don’t forget about the Beast Hunters stuff.  Added on here, Shockwave looks like a nightmare born of the ThunderCats’ Thunder Tank.   I would not want to meet this guy in a dark battle field.  This is the best beast representation, with the claws out front.    I do have to wonder how the Predacons would feel about the skeleton of one of their own being used as armor.

In all, a big, strong, well designed figure.   Feels good to hold, and he is great in both modes.   I picked up the Commander size version of him as well, so we will have to see how this holds up in the small scale.  For now I am going to enjoy playing with this one.

 


New Offerings for the Transformers Cyberverse line from Dark of the Moon

Out of the corner of my eye, almost missed altogether, I saw some new figures from the Cyberverse line from Dark of the Moon.  If you are not familiar with them, they are the smaller figures generally under the title of “Scout” class.   In this line they are made up of the little “Legion” vehicles, and the larger and more complex “Commander” vehicles.  The likes of Optimus Prime are Commander, while Bumblebee would be Legion.

This time around, we have two Autobots who really look like a team.  Autobot Guzzle and Flak:

Guzzle is the big hulking “Commander” sized dude, while Flak is the smaller guy to his right.   These guys are both military vehicles, though you can only see their camo paint scheme so far.  I bet you can figure Guzzle out pretty easily though.

As usual with these figures, the Commander figure comes with a gun.  It is a bit dark in Guzzle’s left hand.  It is a really cool design, where two of the top-mounted vehicle weapons come together to make a bigger robot weapon.   Pretty neat for a small figure. Most of the Legion figures don’t have weapons to hold, so it was nice to see Flak have a weapon that rotates and becomes a primary weapon over his shoulder.

Flak folds down into a troop carrier.  There is nothing too remarkable about his transformation.   I do like the movability of the gun, and the usefulness in both modes.

Guzzle transforms into a tank.   No surprise there.   Also no surprise of his name either right?  Just like a tank drinking fuel, Guzzle is known for taking enormous amounts of Energon to keep running.  Guzzle does have some fancy little folds  to get him down into that tight tank body.  He does not have bunches of robot pieces like is larger brothers tend to have.

Speaking of which, with a brother of sorts.  To show that good things do come in small packages.  At about a third the size, he is really well made, and looks really accurate to a real tank.

We will end this little post of little robots with a little fun.   A nod to the Robotech fans out there.  You gave us Jetfire, so here is a tank version of when a Robotech jet grows legs.  I can’t tell you if this is much use, but it looked fun none the less.   And he has some great feet for a little guy.


Transformers: Why are the Decepticon jets so ugly?

Against my better judgement I bought the Target Exclusive Starscream.  From a purchase during the run of the last movie, I know that Hasbro has had a horrible time, making all of the parts of the robot fit into the body of the jet.   Sorry to tell you, but these are not robots in disguise.

After a look at Starscream, I will take a look at Thundercracker, who is in the Deluxe scale, and somehow does manage to cover everything in jet mode.

Starscream:

He is not a very elegant robot.   Very linear, with a strange rhombus shaped body.  The arms are way out the the sides, and the legs are stangely dropped low.

The body is very flat, front to back.  What one would expect from a jet, which is not too thick to start with.   The arms move funny.  They have a reverse bend at the elbow.

From the front, the jet looks right on.  A few strange bright pieces, but overlooked as it carries throughout the vehicle.  The color scheme is a neat one, this time around going with a metallic silver paint for the tattoos.  The landing gear is really well done, hidden well, but allows for a good stance for the plane.

And then… we are no longer tricked by Starscream’s “disguise.”  His hands, and most of his arms are hanging out the back.  That is a REALLY REALLY POOR design flaw if this robot.  This is a voyager class figure.   Big enough that it should have been easy enough to hide all of the little bits.

I suspect that this is a repaint from a figure from the last movie.  The newer planes are much better.  Case and point, Thundercracker.

Thundercracker’s arms are improved by being moved up to an actual shoulder.   His body is not such a boxy feel.  He has actual elbows and much better movement in his arms.  I am still bummed by the tiny feet.  I thought they would have worked on that a bit.  Oh well.


And then, there is the much better looking plane.  Clear canopy, classic Thundercracker Red and Blue paint, and everything folds up well.  Of course there is still going to be some stuff hanging off the bottom, but there are no hands out the back or any strange out of the ordinary parts hanging off.  Everything is pretty well sealed up on this one.

So, old Decepticons make for bad jets.  New Decepticons make much better jets.  They are still not the best looking robots though.


Transformers Quick Picks: Mudflap and Skids

They are called twins for a reason, but this is the first time the two of them are actually in matching car modes.

Two cars, same body, different split lines. Chevy Sparks.

Mechtech weapons mount on top of vehicles in holes that have covers that lower as the weapon is installed.

 

Reverse arms, with one having big hand on right, the other with a big hand on the left.

Not the best looking robots out there.  They are awkward and top-heavy.  The best part about them is that their car bodies match, but take very different transformations.  Very unique for a Transformer.  In the G1 type figures, we generally got a repaint and that was about it.  I still think these are the Jar-Jar Binks of the Transformers universe, but it was great fun in Revenge of the Fallen to watch Bumblebee knock their heads together and throw them out of the tomb.


Transformers: Dark of the Moon, Weapons Bases

Optimus Prime and Megatron are in the Commander scale with trailers.   They both transform into weapon bases as well as an alternate mode for a power-up.  It is great to see Optimus with his trailer, which I know we are going to get to see this time around.  Megatron on the other hand is also good to see with the trailer.   We have a Voyager class version of Megatron with his trailer, but it is a part of him.  This one becomes a weapons base all it’s own.

Both of the characters have been seen in the regular Cyberverse figures.   Optimus comes with a jetpack, while Megatron comes with an oil tanker that becomes a weapon.

Optimus Prime:

Right off the bat, loving the colors.  We get the stripe down the side like the G1 trailer.   There are a few extras hanging off here and there, but looks okay.   Not too pleased with the back wheels on the trailer.  One set is molded in, while the other set do roll slightly.   It would have been better to make them both roll, but if not, at least make them the same color.

As a weapon base, it really has the G1 feel to it.  I think it is due to the ramp on the back that allows some of the Legion class figures to drive up there.  I would have liked to see the ramp drop down in vehicle mode, but I guess we are going to have to wait for the Ultimate Optimus Prime for that one.  There is a cannon that really fires.  Optimus can easily hold onto the gun.

In the alternate mode, this is kind of a power suit.   Optimus can hold onto controls to move the arms.  I think the idea is that he could walk around in this suit, but the base is a solid piece, so no posing the legs other than just standing.  The cannon can be attached to either arm.

And with his Cyberverse counterpart.  The same figure, but a very different look with the paint apps.  The colors are slightly darker on the first version of Optimus.  Similar enough to know that they are the same character, but unique enough to stand on his own.   Either figure can attach to the trailer or the wings.

Megatron:

Megatron in his grey glory.   His trailer actually has working wheels, a nice addition not seen on Optimus’ trailer.  The color scheme is the same as the first version of Megatron.  If you are a collector, you will need to decide if it is worth it for you to have two of the same bodies with the same colors.   I got the Target 2-Pack Megatron, and he comes in black and purple.   A nice variant color there.

Where Optimus just had one big gun to man, Megatron has a big gun, plus two independent weapons out on the edges of the platform.  This one is a really sturdy design.  Megatron has much more movement in his arms than Optimus, and can really reach out well.

When it is time to advance, or more likely for a Decepticon, retreat, Megatron gets a flight mode.  The main gun can be tucked in during flight, giving Megatron a tail of sorts, but in landing, it can fold out in the back and be good stability to keep him standing.

Weapons Base Megatron with the Target 2-Pack Megatron.  The WB Megatron has a bit of extra color on his face, all thanks to Optimus in the last movie.  I think he is going to want a bit of retribution for that one.  As with Optimus, either vehicle can handle the weapons systems of the other.

The longer version of Megatron looks better and tougher.   It would have been nice if the attachment points for either Megatron or Optimus was a post so the trailers could swing around, but that is not the case.  They are very long, and cannot turn.

Both of these figures were first on my list for the Weapons bases.   There is also Bumblebee and Starscream out there, but I really wanted the longer trucks first.  They are nice vehicles and good figures.


Human Alliance – Transformers: Dark of the Moon

I have to say I was intrigued with figures coming with Transformers.   Even more so when I saw how good the articulation of the little figures were.

Backfire:

Backfire is a good looking figure that stands strong.  The only problem is his little tiny hidden hands.  It would have been nice to see some better hands on him, but what we loose in hands we make up for is really big guns.  🙂   The figure with him is Spike Witwicky.  Don’t know the relationship to Sam in the movie continuity yet, but I am sure we will find out sooner or later.

Changing Backfire into vehicle mode is easier said than done.  They mislabeled the directions, and there is no where that says to change to vehicle.  They are there though.  The pictures are listed under the second reference to changing to robot mode.

The vehicle is really nice.  It went together well, and stays together.   The only problem being that the figure looks a bit on the small side for the vehicle.  But at least he fits well with all of the articulation he has going on.

And here is where you loose me.  I get the fun of trying to make things be able to transform a few different ways, but these weapon stations are not very well done.  They certainly don’t make any sense for a Transformer to change into a weapon station for someone else to use them.   This just looks silly.   And why does Spike have to sit on the engine?  Not a good design there.

Icepick:

Icepick, we have seen not so long ago as a Power Core Combiner.  I was thinking it was just a reuse of the name, but there is actually reference to him being the same guy from that line.   This time around he has found himself working with Sergeant Chaos.  If you haven’t figured it out, they are the bad guys.

Icepick turns into a really nice snowmobile.   Again, the figure is a bit on the small side.   This vehicle, like the last, stays together really well.

I don’t even know where to start on this one.  It was basically taking the tracks off the back, rotating them around and making them come out in the front.   Now they can’t even move.  It looks like they actually intended this to work this way since there is a post that is supposed to go in a hole to keep it looking like this.

So, here ya go.   Two of the figures from the Human Alliance line.   Good robots, great vehicles, lousy triple changers.  What happened to the days of Astrotrain?   Ah well, there is much, much more to come from the Dark of the Moon line.


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