Oh, I nearly forgot, I picked up DOTM Human Alliance basic Thunderhead on clearance at Target this weekend, $5.24. The figure doesn't merit a full review, but it's also not as bad as I thought it'd be.
Bot mode is ok, a lot of backpack perhaps, but overall the bot mode looks alright (definitely more bad guy than the Autobot he is though), and the feet fold past flat to more of a toes look which helps with his proportions. The articulation is a little frustrating with a lot of limitations at the knees and ankles, but most frustrating is a lack of swivel at the anywhere along the arm, so the hands end up SIDEWAYS to the elbow articulation - he can only hold stuff like he's doing bicep curls! Also, there are 3mm clip weapons on his backpack which can't really be deployed here, and no useable clip-rails in bot mode (there are clip-rails at the elbows but they are slightly too small so the weapons just dangle face down making them useless).
Transformation to alt mode is overly simple, basically it's just rotating the backpack around, folding up a few greebles, and repositioning the limbs.
The official alt mode is an unarmored, 1-man spider-tank with hexagon-plated treads at the end of every limb. The treads cannot truly lay flat due to their "motor" ends being fatter than the treads themselves, but there are a lot of position ideas that can be worked out, especially since the treads have hexagon-plates which could suggest multi-direction movement akin to a mecanum wheel. The instructions say the robot arms just rotate around, yet they're on a set of hinges which let them pivot all the way around to cover the neck-hole despite no mode using that range of motion, so I assume that the designers meant them to move there to cover that hole and stick out the front diagonally, that also makes the front tread-legs equidistant to the rear now. It's still pretty half-assed though.
Transformation to weapon mode has a little more going on with the lower torso folding down to create a mech suit for the driver with a gun over his head, there's even a fold-down panel with outer grips and gauges and buttons on the inner section. The arms don't end up reaching past this cockpit in this mode, making it a bit dubious a design, and the hands fold past straight to 90 degrees up, suggesting something else was intended for them, but it's not a terrible mech suit. I'd argue that this is actually the vehicle mode, and the walking tank is the weapon mode since it's more of a traditional cannon shape, but neither mode has a 5-mm peg that can be gripped by another bot the way the rest of the HA weapon modes have.
The human figure is a basic military guy, really not much going on, he's light colored and has a tiny autobot logo on his chest. Like the other humans in this basic line, he's shorter than the original HA figures and thus his ability to reach the controls of the tank are quite compromised, the head has to be slid all the way back just to get there.
All in all, at $10 this is pretty mediocre, but it's not as bad as packaging, official images, and crummy instructions would suggest.
TFP deluxe Arcee arrived a few days ago and I also got cyberverse commander Starscream, Megatron and Optimus from WM. Haven't had time to open any of them yet.
Universal Studios Hollywood is offering to passholders previews of the Transformers ride on May 4-6 so I'll most likely be going on one of those days.
That's cool about the ride preview! The description of the ride definitely sounds like it'll be a "big" ride and very Bayverse. If I front you the cash, think you could pick me up the Evac deluxe figure they're selling at the end of the ride? The slides looked really good at Botcon last year and I would like to have him.
Sure, I can do that
Originally Posted by JediTricks
Originally Posted by figrin bran
I finally saw some TF:P Cyberverse today, at TRU. They wanted $6 for the Legion figures, which is only somewhat crazy, but they wanted $12 each for the friggin' Commanders! They did come with mini-DVDs, but so what? That's just free marketing, why should consumers have to tack on $4 extra for it?
I haven't had any issues with my previous Cyberverse figures, but I have only purchased commanders. I thick Arcee is just lazy. It's like they wanted to do everything and nothing at the same time.
Originally Posted by JediTricks
I was actually pretty impressed with Soundwave. When I saw him on the show, I couldn't figure out how they were going to make him. They did a pretty good job. I like the fact that his arms look as thin as they do on the show but still are strong. The paint is a tad boring, but accurate. I'm not a fan of the plastic it's made with, but it looks like a trend that's staying. Laserbeak is boring, but accurate for its size and I love the fact it fits in Soundwaves chest.
Originally Posted by JediTricks
I have 2 Legion figures from the DOTM line, and one of them uses very thin plastic and a lazy transformation, but it sounds like Arcee is worse than that. I picked up an Arcee for Chaddymac and was a little tempted to open her, but I can see in package what you're saying, although I don't know if every type of collector would be bothered by the way the joints are doing all the work without even friction bumps. I do think the IDEA of the sculpt for $5 is worth some concessions though, it looks like they did a lot for the concept, but I can't speak to that execution.
Picked up TF:P Cyberverse Commander Starscream at Target yesterday, on sale for $8, with the pack-in DVD (episode is Masters & Students, I haven't watched yet, I think it's the very first episode I stopped at).
Vehicle mode is where I'll start because it's where the weaknesses are found. Vehicle mode is fair but the legs are too obvious and the feet are un-aerodynamically-placed - though they can be rotated to minimize that some. From the bottom it's not much worse, but the robot hands show, the robot legs are obvious, and the chest is an obvious odd shape. The real problem I have with this alt mode is that the rear end is just legs folded over. Also, the cockpit doesn't quite integrate with the rest of the vehicle that well. But it's not terrible, tho' it's also not really that good. It's very pointy, only the vertical portion of the tail is soft rubber, the weapons stick out too, so younger kids should take some precaution.
Transformation is basic but not unsatisfying. It's just unfolding and splitting, and a head reveal, but enough stays moving and clicks into place to make it acceptable. Back to vehicle mode is about the same, although the vertical tail doesn't lock into position - its notch is a fraction too shallow to hold the tab, I think. Folding the shoulders into the torso all the way causes the head to pop out of its socket, it's a nice touch though not enough to be called an automorph. The tail in package is rotated towards the figure, the instructions say to rotate it around but doing so shows that gap behind the head more than having the tail partly fill it in, so you have to decide what looks better to you as the "wrong" way leaves less backpack.
Bot mode seems fairly accurate, except that he doesn't have the wings sticking out the shoulders -- ironically, I think this figure's solution looks far less kibbly than the actual character. This version's wings are lower and visually unobtrusive, although they are a considerable amount of backpack. There's a good amount of paint here, small details like the fin, eyes, and decepticon logo; and the light-pipe aspect - while considerable throughout the torso - is not as overwhelming as the other figures IMO, he doesn't look like a cheap clear figure. Aside from the wings/backpack situation, the only other real inaccuracy to the show is the cockpit halves end up as the outsides of the forearms, the tip going past the hands, but it's not a deal-breaker. Those cockpit shell parts can be dislodged from the forearms, but on mine one side of the elbow got bent by doing this, and the other arm's pin is so loose that the arm can't stay up without the shell, so clearly it's about manufacturing rather than play intentions -- that said, unpinning the forearms helps with holding the accessories in sword positions. Sculpting is ok, there's not a lot of detail in TF:P designs in general so it's easy to keep this character's sculpt simple yet accurate, although the small hollow behind the head has some tech details sculpted into it which is a nice touch.
Speaking of the accessories, each is a clear fuchsia blade/blaster/battle fork/missile combination with a peg underneath to be held as a blaster or pegged into the forearms or pegged into the wings, a peg hole above so they can be stacked, and a peg behind so the whole thing can be held as a sword; each weapon is sculpted to correspond to a specific side of the jet. The sculpted design of the weapons suggests that a blade has transformed into an open position, branching out to expose the blaster barrel within perhaps. The figure can hold the weapons fine, although in sword position the missile gets blocked by the cockpit shell part causing the blade to be slightly tilted back towards the figure, so dislodging that forearm straightens out the blade-holding. The thin hands are showing small signs of stress fractures but I think they won't get worse. The figure doesn't have any true 3mm clip-system rails, the tips of his wings are 3mm rail-like, but are a fraction too small to hold any clips, so they just slide right off; the missiles on the accessories are even smaller.
Articulation is ball-jointed shoulders with a small amount of rotation range built into the ball-joint receiver, hinged biceps, hinged elbows, ball-jointed hips, hinged knees that can bend almost 180, rotation feet, and a hinge that lets the otherwise-static head look up. That little bit of head articulation helps since the figure has no neck and is slightly hunched. The ball-joints are all reasonably snug, but the feet are so dainty that the figure has a hard time standing on his own; also, there's one angle on each shoulder on mine where the joint is entirely loose for about 5 degrees and it just drops down a little, the right is pointed straight ahead, the left is nearly slack, but both are easily compensated-against. The figure has a lot of range and can strike many poses, but the feet mean he can't hold most of them on his own. The neck not being able to turn also limits poses a bit.
The only thing you should watch out for in-package is the painted panel on the chest and the paint around the head - especially the eyes - where you'll risk slop, off-center faction logo, and scraped paint.
Overall, Starscream is not a bad figure, but it's not a great one either. I don't think the simpler lines of TF:P lend themselves well to the smaller format of Cyberverse compared to something like the movie aesthetics, here it makes a small figure look overly simple and basic when it actually has more going on. Also, I think Cyberverse Commanders pushing $10 is insane for a relatively simple build - these aren't complex lines and joints like Star Wars figures, and they only have a couple simple accessories - but the biggest issue is that they're not terribly satisfying as TRANSFORMERS, they're not generally fun to transform. The figure has a lot of personality in robot mode, that's where its strengths lie, so it gets a middle grade from me, a C, or a 6.5 / 10.
So this...I bought it a few weeks ago, and I had instant buyers remorse once I got it open. I tossed it aside and started to fiddle with my FE version. The cyberverse one is a waste of plastic.
Originally Posted by Darth Metalmute
On a more positive note, I opened up deluxe Ratchet and I like him alot. Transformation is pretty simple, yet it works for him. The figure has alot of personality. I recommend.
Check it out, the mainline Vehicon looks better than the FE! http://www.tfw2005.com/transformers-...ctures-174709/
They put his windshield kibble into his feet, that's an awesome choice!
I am considering:
2 DOTM HA Soundwaves from Japan
2 DOTM Deluxe Soundwaves from Japan
2 DOTM Deluxe Leadfoots from Japan
2 3rd Party Leader Class Blackouts from Japan
I have no current plans to buy other Transformers, so I might be able to save for these kind of purchases.
In time, their price and the demand for them might also go down.
In CVS Pharmacies, I have seen a generic brand car toy that is the Mercedes (or a similar one) that Soundwave converts to. I think it is HA scale. Since I display one in vehicle form, I am strongly considering this. However, the Laserbeak figure included with the HA Soundwave is also something I want 2 of, so maybe it's not a great option for me.