Transformers: Energon & Beyond

Adam

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Siege Voyager Optimus is very good, so close to being my ideal Optimus in fact. Really the only thing holding him back is the truck mode, which isn't bad but so close to being G1 looking, and the kinda crappy weathering.

Megatron is not quite as good, but I think probably the best Megatron of that size in the Generations line. His tank mode is just ok, and in bot mode his "neck plate" doesn't peg in or otherwise be prevented from sinking down. Even that isn't really terrible and allows him to look down, kinda. He doesn't have a ball joint next so that the only up and down motion he's got there.

Hound is fine, bigger than his Universe counterpart. I like the little addition of a magazine drum that can plug into either gun, or all three can be combined to form a large rifle.

Flywheels is okay, but the tank portion has some fitting issue that won't let me plug in the turret straight one, which is kind of annoying.
 

Adam

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I also was pretty amused to find that G1 Optimus Prime on one shelf, wrapped and bent up with a security tag, for $50 with voyager Prime directly under him for cheaper.
 

JediTricks

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Picked up Titans Return Overlord from Marshalls for $13. THIRTEEN BUCKS FOR A LEADER-CLASS! It's an interesting figure, for $13 a no-brainer, pretty decent articulation, especially below the waist. But I really feel like it needed one more gimmick or something, as a Leader-Class it feels a bit simple.

Picked up Siege Hound, my first Siege figure. It's decent, tries to do a little too much with its transformation, so it feels complicated and simple at the same time. I do like the drum mag, that's a fun addition. I'm still not sold on the Siege line as a whole.

Preordered Ectotron, the Transformers/Ghostbusters 35th anniversary crossover figure based on Combiner Wars Hot Spot. That looks so fun.
 

Tycho

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I got leader class Megatron from Dark of the Moon. I spent about a 90 minutes in my comic book shop figuring out how to transform him with other Transformer fans help. It was a great toy and fun to play with in a group. Ultimately we had to go to one of those YouTube videos. I swear the instructions were written from Ikea.

Overall he has a great figure and very impressive. It is the right scale Fort their Studio series but I almost wish he was even a bit bigger because it would go better with other figures from other lines because I am not buying the same characters I already own again in the studio series. There are few exceptions here and there.
 

JediTricks

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Used the HasbroPulse $5 coupon to get Bumblebee movie Studio Series Optimus Prime, it's a pretty cool figure. It looks fantastic and has a really amazing transformation, great detailing. It's got a lot of articulation as well, and a decent update to the ion blaster. The one real drawback is the lower legs don't clip together very strongly, the panels come apart easily; the figure stays standing, but the parts get floppy.
 

JediTricks

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Got Siege Battle Master Smashdown from Amazon, the first new character in ages. Smashdown is a minotaur which is a man body and bull head, he transforms into hammer. He's red with a little gray and blue and silver accents, in bot mode he has a tail because they couldn't figure out a way to deal with the handle better, but the tail is removable and you can kinda wedge it into his hand as a baton weapon. His arms have a big chunk of kibble on the lower half due to his alt mode, but it's kinda par for the course with minicon-style figures.

Transformation is really simple, just rotate the head 180, have every limb stick out to the side and rotated, then fold at the ab and snap limbs together.

Alt mode is a hammer with a bull head in the middle - I don't really know why. The handle is short, like Mjolnir, but has two 5mm sections so it can be gripped towards the bottom or top, and a 3mm peg at the end of that. Either end of the hammer has a 5mm port, and both sides have a fireblast peg at every corner so there's 16 of them, all squarish but they work. Detailing's simple but there is some at every face. The blast effect is a big orange smash, the inside has a 5mm peg with a 3mm port, the outside has a smooth face with a 3mm port, it's not as translucent as the design showed but fits the hammer well, and even fits Ironhide's hammer as well. If a Siege figure has a long blast effect peg, the hammer and blast effect can be attached and stay upright on their own.

Negatives:
- Bot mode's head and waist hinge don't lock into place, despite both looking like they should
- Bot head hollow in back
- Bot mode chest has hollows facing forward
- Hammer grip dislodges from hammer when placing in a larger figure's hands
- One end of the hammer has the date code stamped in, the other has the item number painted in silver

Overall, a simple but unique Battle Master. Fun to have a Mjolnir-like hammer mode, the blast effect looks great, the hammer has 16 blast effect pegs; bot mode is alright from the front but far from perfect, simple, and the back is a bit dodgy. Good figure, nothing outrageous.
 
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Adam

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Six month check in!

I took advantage of Target's BOGO 50% this week and picked up some Earthrise today.

Leader Prime is like.. ok? Almost all of his cab section except for his head and a couple of flaps are all new and converts in a different way from his Siege counterpart. Despite the higher price point, his legs actually do less now. No flipping tires around on this one; legs just peg together, feet fold out and tanks on his new thighs flip out. Much of his legs are from the Siege figure but with new immovable filler to replace the old converting bits. There is a pinned hinge that was part of that old transformation that is still there but now it just holds the filler in place. Weird. That plus his trailer kind of cheap feeling.. I don't understand how this toy is regularly priced at $50. The trailer is not wide enough for most of the Siege cars I tried. It's a bit of a let down honestly. I am glad to have no paid full price for it. Vehicle mode looks good, at least!

I also opened Ironworks who I kind of love even though I don't think I will ever display base modes. I just like that Hasbro is resurrecting the micromaster base concept in this way.

I picked up Hoist and Grapple as well but haven't opened them yet. Does anyone check this thread anymore at all, or am I talking to the void?
 

JediTricks

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I check it whenever it's updated, good to see a familiar face!

I've picked up a bunch of Siege, including this week Thundercracker who donated his head to Starscream.

In Earthrise, I picked up Wheeljack which was defective, picked up a second one which was defective in a different way, so I was able to swap the defective parts and come out with a solid figure. His drawbacks are a single tiny accessory, ape arms (not as bad as G1 but still odd), hollow lower legs, and stubby wings. It's a good figure, it has limitations but the vehicle mode is so good that it makes up for a lot of that. It's worth picking up, B+ at the full price.

ER Cliffjumper is cute, his Legends-size figure has charm and enough going on that he's better than other figures in that class, but he costs twice as much so he damned well better. His drawbacks are a partsformed backpack/shield that leaves him very empty when removed, floppy joints on the arms, and no chest Autobot logo. His accessories are fun in both modes but not quite enough to justify the price. I gave him a B- and feel like that may be generous.

I've shied away from ER Optimus so far and I think it'll stay that way, the bot mode looks nice but the trailer looks so bad that it's really not for me.

I've passed on Hoist and Grapple, but they are tempting. I'm likely going to stay far away from Astrotrain unless I can find it at half price. I have no interest in Ironworks, I liked Weaponizers but this seems like it's trying to keep one toe in that world and one foot way out of it.

Starscream is one where I'm not entirely sure what to do, it doesn't look as good to me as the Siege figure, it repeats a lot of beats from the Classics mold including both good and bad ones. The gaps in the side of the torso really bother me, and the plane with a thick brick underneath is probably what's going to keep me from going into the mold.

Toy Fair looked really dire for the future of Earthrise and Transformers in general. I fear Siege will be the line's last high point, and from here on out it's going to feel downhill as prices go up and costcutting gets worse.
 

Tycho

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I toy with the idea of waiting for a box set to build studio series Devastator and hoping for more studio series Dinobots to fight him. I don't own any, or even Grimlock, but I know a dealer that sells at retail price, and there's no demand for these.
 

JediTricks

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The SDCC-exclusive Dinobots boxed set doesn't sell for very much, you could get 4 out of the 5 figures in their chrome G1 colors for a hundred or so (watch for shipping costs, it's a big set, aim for free shipping listings).

Demand for every collectible is about to face a real valley, so waiting may be your best option.
 

JediTricks

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It's not gonna be pretty, that's for sure.

I got Earthrise Hoist from a preorder, I don't know how much I like this figure though. It is tall for a deluxe, which is good, but it's hollow, the trailer doesn't tow anything larger than a Legends class, the front end of vehicle mode is painfully underdeveloped and the forearms are very visibly dangling under the front doors, the weapon doesn't seem to really make sense anywhere and feels fragile, the "wings" don't lock into place in the right spot, the materials feel brittle and cheap, there's a number of blank spots in the hollows where most figures have detailing. Honestly, it feels very much like a Transformer designed by someone new to the team who has no experience with this line.

Hopefully this is not the last Transformer I get.
 

Tycho

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I saw the SS LC Shockwave in the store the other day. I've also seen every Constructicon except Scrapper and Overload. I'm not sure on this yet.

I wonder if HasLab Unicron shipped? I was not a backer, but wonder if it will be fire-sold?
 

Tycho

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Update on Unicron: it was never due until 2021. There's some YouTube videos of transforming the Prototype.

I have this desire to get the smallest look-alikes of the 1986 cast - they can be Cliffjumper standing in for Hot Rod, etc. But I think this will be hard. MicroMachines which look similar might be a good idea. Any suggestions?
 

El Chuxter

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I made my first trip to WM in ages yesterday. Surprisingly for this location, they stocked new stuff in the last few weeks.

All the Netflix Deluxes except Scrapface (so they didn't have the only one who most people will want) and Ultra Magnus. No Voyagers; I could see them selling out of Hotlink, but really think Megatron is going to pegwarm hard so I assume none were put out.

The new paint jobs are all much nicer than the first releases, but not enough of an improvement to double dip at $20 each. I'd be tempted by Decepticon Mirage if this wasn't the third freaking one. (Even so, I might get it just because I could use him as a background Decepticon.)

Magnus, well, I'd like to get both versions of Rung, but at that price, hell no. I'm guessing a deep clearance on that one, though. If it's ever less than $20, maybe.
 

El Chuxter

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Saw Megatron today. I know it's the third use of the mold in less than two years, and a fourth is coming soon, but, damn, he's a beautiful improvement. I picked him up, along with Mirage, who I guess is Crasher now. :)

They had everyone except Scrapface, but I've got him and a Hotlink being sent to me.
 

Lord Malakite

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You have this My Little Pony Transformer crossover item to look forward to come July.
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Its part of set. The other crossovers in the set are a Ghostbuster. a Pink Power Ranger, and a Dungeons & Dragons Multi-pack.
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