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  1. #281

    Re: Transformers: Energon & Beyond

    TRU OP vs Megs...

    For some reason, it never occurred to me that this box was the same size as the box on regular OP & Megs, I guess because they're $40 and this 2pack is only $25. Inside is one of the worst tangles of twisties I've ever seen, and I collect Star Wars 12" figures posed on vehicles in window boxes! I guess part of that feeling comes from a lot of the twisties being inside the interior bubbles rather than all the way through the cardboard tray, makes it very hard to cut these things off - this is total twisty overkill. I don't have either full-sized version of these Energon figures, neither appealed to me, especially at their $40 pricetags, so this set filled the need for those leaders without breaking my wallet.

    Megatron is a little cooler than I had expected, I definitely would have been honked to pay $40 for the full-sized version, but this one is nifty and I'm told almost as large. The alt mode is too thick and a little too much of a mish-mash to be totally believable, but it's not a disaster and quite well armed - the only thing I really can't get past is the head sticking way out the bottom. Transformation is pretty simplistic, but the trick for the feet and the slide-out chest sides make it satisfying.

    Bot mode stands taller than I had expected, dwarfing the poor Optimus included in the set. MiniMegs could have better articulation though, it's ok (neck, universal shoulders, hinged elbows, forearm swivels, universal hips, and hinged knees) but bicep and thigh swivels would have helped immeasurably. The sword sheath should sit closer to the body, there's too much bulk the way it is. The sword is ok but there's no reason the bottom couldn't have had a standard peg molded into it, leaving this off so only the tank can hold it is unacceptable (the openings near the bottom can slip over a standard peg, but Megs doesn't have one near his hands).

    The tank drone is ok, nothing to write home about, it's too big to make a reasonable sword-holder, I guess as a forearm-mounted weapon it's alright though - I prefer the forearms rotated fist-up so the tank is hanging down below.


    Optimus Prime is kinda silly, the fig is small even for an Energon deluxe figure, and in this set it's too funny to see Megs twice as tall as Optimus. Alt mode is a good representation of the original except for a gap in the side and the robot mode head(s) hanging off the back, though at least Optimus' face is rotated out of the way. Like Inferno, I wish the designers had made just a smidge more space on the underside, it could have very easily been stowed totally out of the way. The truck seems to be in the same scale as Tow Line, Rodimus, and Inferno, so it doesn't look terribly out of place with those alt modes even though it still looks like the runt of the litter. Transformation is fairly straightforward and simple except for freeing the arms from the rear truck section, I kinda fumble with the wrists until things get free.

    Bot mode is downright shrimpy even though he's not much smaller than any other deluxe figure, I guess it's because he is Optimus Prime and not supposed to be this small - hell, he's actually TALLER than Armada deluxe Prime, yet because of the puny head and fat body here he seems less like OP. He's fairly well articulated for a deluxe (head, universal shoulders, hinge elbows, universal hips, swivel upper thighs, hinged knees, and hinged angles) though swivel upper forearm and/or bicep articulation would have really made poseability a lot better. As for colors, I would definitely had preferred the white chest area have been red, but can't win 'em all. The chrome bumper and grill part doesn't lock into the chest parts very well, so the chest is a tiny bit out of alignment. The figure has some nice sculpted small details, I especially like the underside of the feet and the tech bits on the chest behind the headlights. OP's pistol is ok, dark blue and pegs to the truck backpack for storage.

    Some folks have suggested sliding the thigh covers down and rotating the backpack up to alleviate the "fattimus" effect a little, and they are right, but the designers could have almost totally eliminated the "fattimus" effect by using the foldy bits already included for powerlinking better: the backpack should have been able to slide up the back halfway to look like a REAL backpack and the panels holding the front wheels that can slide inwards in powerlinking should have able to slide in for bot mode as well.

    Both powerlinking transformation schemes have some clever stuff, but the end results are not all that good. Powerlinked as pants, Prime is almost laughable, big hanging bits off the side and back, head up the wazoo.... It's actually better without a figure on top, looks more like a battle drone, maybe this is Proptimus Decoy and when enemies get close enough, he turns from robot decoy to muderous drone! YEEHAW! The chest panels become huge skirt pieces, might be able to put a minicon on there. Anyway, Tow Line looks best wearing the Optimus Pants, quite the armed maniac in this config really.

    Powerlinked as a shirt, I don't really like this mode much at all. He slaps on the helmet for the bigger head and gets huge floppy shoulderpads with weird semi-arms, they're the regular arms that end in guns instead of hands now and hang down strangely.

    Mini-OP is not a terrible figure, though if you are jonesing for more powerlink partners you may be disappointed. I like a lot of what's going on here, he makes me smile, but he's far from greatness. Go Proptimus Decoy!
    Darth Vader is becoming the Mickey Mouse of Star Wars.

    Kylo Ren - came from Space Brooklyn, although he moved to Space Williamsburg before it was trendy.

    The use of a lightsaber does not make one a Jedi, it is the ability to not use it.

  2. #282

    Re: Transformers: Energon & Beyond

    I recieved Shockblast, Cliffjumper, EE Ironhide, and Dreadwing today.

    I heart Shockblast. Stands pretty well pointing his gun arm in any direction.

    Cliffjumper's robot mode is... odd. The big feet are kinda goofy. I like him as a shirt though, haven't "pantsed" him yet though.

    EE Ironhide is of course exactly like Ironhide, so I won't say much other than I still like this mold a lot.

    Dreadwing is a neat repaint, but I wish he was more grey like he is on the box..

  3. #283

    Re: Transformers: Energon & Beyond

    I found DeadEnd, Silverstreak, and Hound Alternators today at Walmart but passed on them because all of them were inside mangled boxes. Sucks too because i really wanted Hound but will just have to wait until i find a better one. Seen a couple of new Energon figures too. Almost grabbed Downshift but decided to hold onto the money in case something else should pop up later in the week.
    Good Traders/Sellers: Cameo, Darth Cruel, Sith Killer 99, JJReason, icatch9, ChasingJediDogma, AT-AT Man, JediMasterGuyute, Brainiak76, JangoFett96, njscollectibles, Vulcantouch, AC Pin, TheDarthVader, msjedi, DarthQuack, Roojay

  4. #284

    Re: Transformers: Energon & Beyond

    In the past month or so, my Decepticons have almost doubled, with the addition of Slugslinger, Sharkticon, Dreadwing, Shockblast, and Mini-Megatron, so yesterday, I got all my Decepticons and Terrorcons together and transformed 'em all into a group. What I noticed was, aside from the Terrorcons, only 1 Decepticon has any reasonable accessories! Starscream comes with a big blaster rifle and a sword, he is the only one with handheld accessories. Megatron has his silly-looking oversized tank drone, and his sword can only be held by the tank, so his fist pegholes are going to waste. IMO, this undermines the point of Hyper Power Mode, if they're always unarmed in bot mode, they'll ALWAYS need HPM which makes it a lot less special. I really wish they'd start putting accessories in with these 'Con figures, spending $7 for a Terrorcon just to give his specialized accessories to a Decepticon seems unfair to the buyer (and the Terrorcon).

    Quote Originally Posted by Adam
    I heart Shockblast. Stands pretty well pointing his gun arm in any direction.
    I picked up Shockblast and Dreadwing at TRU this week, so now I finally have something to relate to.

    As for my Shockblast, he stands ok but definitely is risking falling, he kips over at the drop of a hat when on carpet or an uneven surface, unless the gun is pointed down, of course. I really wish the gun arm here weren't SO large, the gizmos on it look small by comparison and it's just way over the top. If the arm were 15% smaller or more, it'd be awesome. And if they can't bother to make the arm smaller, I would have liked a real arm inside so when you remove the gun, there's a thin robot arm that remains instead of a stump.

    I also don't dig the treads' slider dealy, it feels cheap and last-minute. Finally, the upper torso tilts forward most of the time, it's a sloppy design at the hinge, and there's an unused slot that seems like it corresponds to the backpack which would have fixed this but got abandoned late in the game.

    Ultimately, Shockblast is pretty cool, and I even like his satellite mode, but he's not the end-all be-all I was hearing about. He makes for a good addition to the group though, my Decepticon forces are really finally a menace to my Autobots.

    Dreadwing is a neat repaint, but I wish he was more grey like he is on the box..
    I agree, the light blue they used instead isn't as cool. It is still nice though, very unified and more military than Mirage, and I like the patterns here. The grape-purple translucent plastic is a little odd, but it definitely doesn't fail the figure.

    I do agree with you about the open hollow chest, this had NO reason to be this way either, could have designed panels or even filled the chest in with the speaker unit or something. Still, he looks cool from most angles.

    I haven't made up my mind about the hull pieces, sometimes they look good down like the instructions suggest, sometimes up like the Minicon Terrordive, and sometimes removed entirely - too bad they didn't put handles inside, they'd make good shields. The arm that connects the hulls to the body seems to already be eroding the ball joint, I hate when this happens.

    I like the Hyper Power Mode gimmics, but they're not really that exciting, Hasbro needs to stop hyping them like they're some amazing transformation. The main guns, those twin pop-up missile launchers, are shaped a little too much like those smaller tampon applicators, gives me a chuckle.

    Did you notice the techspec card stats were all question marks? What's the deal with that?

    Ultimately, I really like this figure, and definitely am glad I passed up Mirage for this color scheme instead, but the hollow chest and hull piece issues are sorta goofy.
    Darth Vader is becoming the Mickey Mouse of Star Wars.

    Kylo Ren - came from Space Brooklyn, although he moved to Space Williamsburg before it was trendy.

    The use of a lightsaber does not make one a Jedi, it is the ability to not use it.

  5. #285

    Re: Transformers: Energon & Beyond

    Spotted Alternators Meister & Tracks yesterday at Target, but only picked up Tracks. I hate the new windowless boxes, all of them had dust on the inner bubble and the logo smushed in slightly, it went from trick to crap lickety split. Some of Meister's panels are a different white from the others, like the smaller panel in the hood being off from the rest of the hood, the fenders being different from the doors, stuff like that - it was too noticable for me.

    Tracks is a contradiction, on one hand he's super cool yet on the other he's frustrating as heck. The alt mode seems too narrow all around and the cabin is too tall, it is not a disaster but seems like the weak aspect of the figure. The overall feel is thinner and lighter, I wasn't too impressed with that. It didn't help either that I really don't care for the Z06 design, it's missing the trademark hatchback-style window or the older fastback shape; I much prefer the new C6 which is cooler and more aggressive, but none of this is Hasbro/Takara's fault except in choosing the lamer of the 2 Vettes. Finally, the paintjob is ok but kinda bland, Chevy has a version on the market with racing stripes, they should have gone there even if they won't do flames. The big white cylinders when you open up the doors kinda kill much of the interior's realism, but there are some interesting details there even if the dash is a bit plain. The front wheel turning dealy is probably the best one in the series, the wheels don't need magnets or anything, they just have arms which push against the opposing ones to cause the wheels to turn, the design actually is a floating style which works quite well and seems more realistic.

    Transformation the first time was a real mess because nothing is terribly obvious, the instructions pass over a few things, and too many of the joints are way too tight. Once I got it all figured out, only transforming back has any trouble, where the hood meets back up with the body. I don't love this tf scheme too much though, the empty back and shellmastery feel just aren't that satisfying, and I still can't figure out why the steering column folds down.

    Bot mode has some wild stuff going on, but frustrating too. The figure is well-articulated, but the majority of the arm joints are oddball that work fine but can get confusing, the leg joints aren't too bad except that the hips are limited in some ways and the ankles seem to only rotate, not tilt which it desparately could have used. Tracks is mostly shell pieces hanging off the body, worse even than SideSwipe in some ways, with the legs having a lot of big pieces hanging around and the back is loose and unsure of itself (like why are the seats moving at all if they're this limited). The figure is well-armed, with dual cannons sliding out of the forearms, but the articulated hand cannot close into a fist or even fully close around the gun (not that it needs to, it clips into place sorta), and the twin missile launchers on the back are nifty but hollow on exposed side and both are on arms that are too loose; the gun itself is kinda neat, but a cheesy looking engine. The figure leans forward a little too much for my tastes, and you have to fix this at the knees because the hips have some limitations and the ankles can't tilt (or they can tilt, but it's really minor), but once he's standing, he's armed to the teeth. Now if only he had more menacing enemies to use those weapons against.
    Darth Vader is becoming the Mickey Mouse of Star Wars.

    Kylo Ren - came from Space Brooklyn, although he moved to Space Williamsburg before it was trendy.

    The use of a lightsaber does not make one a Jedi, it is the ability to not use it.

  6. #286

    Re: Transformers: Energon & Beyond

    Er, well I didn't pose Shocky on carpet or uneven surface, so I never encountered that. On my shelf he is posed with his gun angling up above and between Starscream and Snow Storm.

    I like both Mirage and Dreadwing with the panels up like Terradive. And I also now agree that Dreadwing's scheme is superior... just wish it was gray!
    Last edited by Adam; 10-16-2004 at 12:13 AM.

  7. #287

    Re: Transformers: Energon & Beyond

    JT, so who's your favorite Alternator now?


    I think he fills out into a robot nicely. I think Sideswipe is the coolest car - being a convertible too - something we didn't get in the Gen. 1 days.

    Who's everyone else's favorite? Optimus Prime not included, as he'd beat everyone else without any doubt.

    BTW: I've only seen Hound and Dead End and Silverstreak once down in San Diego. That's it!

    We still have Sideswipe and Smokescreen hanging at Targets, Wal-Marts, and Toys R Us (especially as of late - they just got new cases of them).

    I'd love to pick up Tracks AND Meister - these and Grimlock are the last 3 I plan to buy I think (unless there are jet plane Decepticons I can get).

  8. #288

    Re: Transformers: Energon & Beyond

    Smokey is the best detailed, his transformation uses the parts the most wisely and his face is less simplistic than the others. Plus, his torso is filled in and shaped with the front seats which is damn creative. I'm not sure he's my favorite, but he usually ends up in front of the others and always stands out. I like Dead End as a toy, he's the best vehicle mode, his transformation isn't as much a pain as SideSwipe's, and his bot mode is much more stable than SS. I really like how Hound's lower legs are done, best use of alt mode elements, but his crappy shoulders and lack of torso kinda do him in. I like Tracks a lot, but it's in spite of his issues. So it's a Sophie's Choice right now, I dig 'em all for different reasons, but Smokescreen taking the early lead. I'm thinking Windcharger may end up throwing a monkeywrench into the mix though.
    Darth Vader is becoming the Mickey Mouse of Star Wars.

    Kylo Ren - came from Space Brooklyn, although he moved to Space Williamsburg before it was trendy.

    The use of a lightsaber does not make one a Jedi, it is the ability to not use it.

  9. #289

    Re: Transformers: Energon & Beyond

    Windcharger? He used to be a mini-bot. He's getting an Alternator form?

    What will he be? What color? Any pics?

    As far as I know the future of Alternators:

    Tracks - blue corvette
    Meister - white ???
    Grimlock - white Mustang

    Swindle - tan version of Hound for Decepticon
    They have these Stunitcon names they can still use: Drag Strip, Wildrider, Breakdown.

  10. #290

    Re: Transformers: Energon & Beyond

    Windcharger will be a red Honda S2000:

    Tracks is a blue Corvette Z06, Meister is a white Mazda RX-8, Grimlock is a silver Mustang GT, Ravage is a black convertible Corvette Z06, and Swindle is a yellow Jeep Rubicon.
    Darth Vader is becoming the Mickey Mouse of Star Wars.

    Kylo Ren - came from Space Brooklyn, although he moved to Space Williamsburg before it was trendy.

    The use of a lightsaber does not make one a Jedi, it is the ability to not use it.


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