Saturday, 23 February 2008

REVIEW: Cybertron Mode Optimus Prime, (Transformers Animated)

From: Hasbro

Retail: $9.99 - £10

Accessories: Sunroof Shield, Interchangeable Energy Axe

One word to describe this figure: WOW!

During my 20+ year run of collecting Transformers I've seen many different Optimus Prime figures, some good and some really bad. Fortunately this first Optimus Prime offering from the Transformers: Animated toy line is one of the best I have handled.

Cybertron Mode Optimus Prime is presented as part of the deluxe assortment and glows brightly as an affordable, colourful Autobot leader for kid fans to own in their Autobot army and collectors to display proudly on their stands.

The vehicle form is odd to describe, it is like a futuristic cyber scooter / truck cab hybrid with a large windscreen panel at the front and tank treads at the back. The vehicle doesn’t do a lot except for act as a toy car; there are no weapons or added gimmicks except for room on the back for possibly another figure to take a ride. This interpretation of Optimus Prime is meant to be one of the younger characters on the show, so in all fairness having a small underdog-like mode compliments this characteristic rather well.

Transforming this toy into robot form is where the magic really begins. Like with previous Optimus Prime figures the front of the truck is the robots chest and the back wheel area of the cab transform into legs. Aside from the transformation cliché the best part is the arms which fold out from the back of the scooter/cab are already holding the axe and shield accessories making a nice transition.

As for the accessories, the shield fits nicely on Prime's left forearm via a poseable notch there, this notch also holds down the shield in vehicle form as a sunroof. The shield comes into play again by splitting in two and becoming a larger attachable blade for the axe. As well as the optional shield add on, the axe has two other modes where the main blade can split in two or stay together as one. There is also an added peg on this axe which sticks out in vehicle mode as a possible trailer peg but its use for anything yet is uncertain. The idea of individualised combat weapons for this toy line (i.e. Prowl and his shuriken, Bulkhead and his wrecking ball etc) is just brilliant and certainly makes a change from the average gun and occasional sword that a TF figure is usually bundled with.

Seeing the finished robot mode is so rewarding since Optimus Prime is so articulated. The solid, strong and simple use of red and blue colours really makes this figure pleasing to the eye. The robot head is expressive as this 'young' Optimus Prime gladly embraces the omission of a faceplate and brandishes a friendly smile and a large chin in such heroic-like gesture.

I've seen this figure faced with earlier criticism in that there isn't a lot of detail in places; I actually like it that way! This Prime is NOT a Bayformer after all. There is actually some good detailing around the figure especially for example the chest panel which seen up close shows Autobot insignia markings. Since this is very cartoony the demand for great detail isn't there and TFA Prime is the kind of simplistic model for kid artists to draw from.

TFA Optimus Prime (Cybertron Mode) is a great start to what will be a very successful Transformers incarnation. This toy is a great purchase for young and old fans alike and as a deluxe size figure is also reasonably affordable. The design of Optimus Prime is impressive and well thought with the result being an attractive first buy character in the Transformers Animated range. Definitely one to start the Animated collection with.



Thursday, 21 February 2008


Look at what arrived at my house this morning.

It would seem that Christmas in July just came early.

Tuesday, 19 February 2008

REVIEW: Repvile, (Madballs series 1)

From: Basic Fun / American Greetings

around $7.99


When I first heard that Madballs were coming back my interest was instantly grabbed. The old favourites from the obnoxious and gross themed toy series now return and are joined by a new ball to top up Series 1. This new ball going by the name Repvile is a blue coloured Madball with a reptillian theme. Repvile is covered in small horns, has a runny nose problem and poses an aggressive facial expression which probably suggests he is one of the bad guys. I purchased Repvile first because his look reminded me of Dark Leonardo from TMNT: Fast Forward.

The problem I have with the new Madballs toyline is the new sponge like material they have been made with. Even when Repvile was still in his packaging the paintjob was already starting to flake and that really isn't good. I remember the old Madballs from the mid-80's being built to last with harder jerky like plastic, these newer offerings don't feel and look like they have that lastability. 20 years on it is easy to assume that a toyline would have stepped up, sadly Madballs has taken a trip on the first rung of the ladder.

By all means a ball is meant to be a ball whether it is part of cricket, tennis, catch or whatever; the purpose is still there - "Toss 'em!", "Bounce 'em!", "Catch 'em!". However due to the paintjob the novelty of having a fancy ball with a gross out design will not last long and I don't think the ball itself is any more built to last either.

Next doors dog would chew through this toy like a warm snickers bar and it now it shows this review did''nt just apply to Repvile but also the other Madballs in Series 1 too. Repvile's design is cool and deserves to be preserved in the packaging even though it would seem the paint is declining to start with. The result is a sad story for this comeback toyline, and I can see these making a trip to the discount bin rather than just the bin. Here is hoping Series 2 will be much better.



Sunday, 17 February 2008

Toyfair 08 Transformers Goodness!

Hasbro had plenty of muscle to flex at this weekends NY Toyfair. As well as other offerings such as Cloverfield, Indiana Jones, Star Wars, Iron Man, and The Hulk there was a whole load of Transformers items from its: Universe (Classics), Movie, and Animated sublines. Added to those Iron Man, Hulk, and Star Wars also had TF representatives too.

The upcoming Transformers figures on show were (in brief):

Animated: Soundwave (w/ Laserbeak guitar), Jazz (w/nunchucks!), Oilslick (a hell's angels style bike), Blackarachnia, Bumper Battlers (like the Movie Cyberslammers), Bulkhead (w/Headmaster head), Activators series (quick changers), Optimus VS Megatron 2 pack.

Movie: Ratchet rig blaster, Legends VS packs, Premium series, Stockade, Landmine, Incinerator

Universe: Tankor (you know you want to call him Octane!), Galvatron (deluxe tank), Blaster (Cybertron Soundwave repaint), Sunstreaker, Prowl, Powerglide (in white and red colours?), Onslaught, Red Alert, and Starscream.

Robot Heroes: Waspinator VS Rhinox, Galvatron VS Sunstreaker, Arcee VS Rumble, Rattrap VS Megatron, Hound VS Blitzwing, Tarantulas VS Optimus Primal, Blackarachnia VS Cheetor.

Marvel Transformers: Iron Man (G1 seeker style transformation), The Hulk (big tank)

Star Wars: Clone Trooper, Rogue Trooper, Boba Fett, Obi Wan Kenobi.

2008 could mark a very strong year for Transformers with the brand being divided in many differnt ways offering kids and collectors a little something for everyone.

Saturday, 16 February 2008

NEWS: Botcon 2008 Goldbug revealed!

Following our earlier report from Slash, the team at have unveiled another exclusive figure for the 2008 convention.

Goldbug (or Evil Goldbug rather) is a black and warm yellow repaint of the Hot Shot toy from Transformers: Cybertron. The crown jewel on this figure is the remoulded head which is resembling that of the Throttlebot Goldbug from Generation 1.

More Botcon 2008 Shattered Glass figures are yet to be unveiled. The announced protagonist Starscream figure and minicon partner is certainly sure to draw some attention.

Friday, 15 February 2008

NEWS: Cloverfield Monster Finally Revealed

NEWS: posts the Cloverfield Monster finally.
See It Here!

Since the movie came out in January, it has been available for pre-order at a lovely $99.99 with no pictures... But now the site finally gives you a glimpse of what this monster looks like. It is supposedly available at the end of September as well.

A friend of mine and I have been wondering if it was a hoax when the site listed it as available for pre-order for the movie. Who is willing to drop a hundred dollars on a monster toy that you haven't seen yet? Definitely must be a promotion for the movie. Alas, now we can see this monstrosity!

The site brags about it having:
  • 70 points of articulation and incredible life-like detail
  • Authentic sound
  • 14” tall
  • 10 parasites
  • Two interchangeable heads
  • Statue of Liberty head accessory
  • Special Cloverfield collector’s edition packaging
I have yet to see these special pieces it comes with. Or the packaging. Or even the movie. Now that I have seen this monster, I know I won't be caring about seeing the movie. It looks like an overpriced and messed up McFarlane toy. I just feel like I have saved $10 and don't have to see the movie now. Perhaps the next time I see this monster will be in a clearance sale.

NEWS: discovered us!

Figured Out toy review: Chunk, Goonies Series 1:
Toy review of Chunk from the Goonies action figure line. Is it any good? Figure it out by reading Figured Out.
Nothing that amazing, but at least we got noticed. Congrats Hero!

NEWS: Reports That HML Hulk Waves Will Be $15 Per Figure

NEWS: Reports That HML Hulk Waves Will Be $15 Per Figure

$15 a figure for two waves consisting of four figures each? $120 for a Fing Fang Foom. Since Hasbro has taken over the Marvel Legends line, I feel like the figures are lacking a consistency of scale and we have seen too many repaints (IE: The White Queen body has been used many a time) already in what has been only roughly a year?

I know these figures are for the upcoming movie and it's cool to see the possibilities for a ton of Incredible Hulk characters to be made but from what they are offering, it's all been done before. Just feels like Hasbro's Marvel Legends team is running out of ideas. How many Hulks do we need in a line? I know it's a Hulk movie.

I hope Hasbro can wake up before the ML fans stop collecting. If that day happens, it'll be a sad day for me even though I stopped collecting. I enjoyed seeing all the ToyBiz ML figures on shelves and collecting the characters I liked. But these Hasbro figures? Not impressive.

Points go to Wes for the heads up and also the MarvelToys info.

REVIEW: Chunk, The Goonies series 1

From: Mezco
Retail: around £12.99 - $15.99
Accessories: Pizza slice, Milkshake, Statue of David

The Goonies is one of my all time favourite movies and for me to see a collectable action figure line based on these likable outcasts is a wonderful sight to behold. This line in particular certainly is a toyline to an extent, for there are no playsets or vehicles and even the figures have limited articulation. Chunk here is pretty much a static figure with only a movable head and arms so any performance of the infamous truffle shuffle is near impossible.

In terms of look Chunk's shirt and checkered trousers are really spot on. What lets this figure down (or my personal copy of the figure anyway) are the pink teeth and liver lips on his face. The stock image (pictured) shows the figure with white teeth and normal lips but this figure looks like he's been drinking blood (perhaps this may be a colour variant). Another thing that could have been done is more accessories for presentation sake, such as the 'Captain Chunk' pirate hat and a Baby Ruth bar maybe?

Speaking of accessories. Accompanying Chunk aside from his pirate-deck display stand is: a slice of pizza, a milkshake (which were both smeared on the window by Chunk in the opening credits during the Fratelli jailbreak), and the Statue of David (sans "Mom's favourite peice") from Mikey's house which Chunk broke earlier in the film.

Mezco's action figure offering of Chunk the accident prone, fib telling, teased fat kid Goonie is a fairly good reproduction of the movie character. Aside from the liver lips and blood stained teeth and the lack of extra accessories, Chunk is quite collectable and comes to a close second next to Sloth as the hardest to find Goonie figure. This figure is probably for completists only.

- Hero

Thursday, 14 February 2008

NEWS: BotCon 2008 Optimus Prime

NEWS: BotCon 2008 Optimus Prime is off the website for your preview if you click here. He looks pretty neat with his battle damages, scarred paints, cracked windows, and the other new details he has. Before I get picky, I want to know why he has this new paint job though... He looks like a zombie or a mutated version of himself. Perhaps this is what happens when a Cybertronian upgrades himself with Vista!

Thanks to Wes for the heads up. You can read some of his fun reviews here.

Hero, you're the TF guy... Your takes?

REVIEW: Alien Hunter Dumpjumper and Alien Hunter Thrashmor from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

REVIEW: Alien Hunter Dumpjumper and Alien Hunter Thrashmor from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

From: Playmates

Retail: $6-$8 each

Accessories: Dumpjumper comes with a side-mounting cannon, Thrashmor comes with a handheld laser, small blade, hammer

I’m setting these up as a pair versus individual reviews because this is just a mere sample review for me while I work the kinks out.

Dumpjumper is a six legged cyborg metabeast apparently that is invading Earth with some other aliens. Dumpjumper is also a grunt and an army builder figure.

The articulation for the figure is good for what you would want to a Dr. Seuss looking alien to have. All six of legs are mobile. His mouth is always stuck in the open position he has pretty detailed teeth. His fur is excessively detailed as well. The paint application applied works. Overall, he is a cool new character to be added to your TMNT collection. My only qualms would be his name, and the fact that his cannon loves to fall of his side. Despite that, I like the figure enough to own four of him.

Thrashmor looks pretty cool; a giant alien that resembles both mammal and reptilian characteristics. What’s not to like about him?

For starters, his possibility and articulation make him awkward to display. He is also too simple with his paint scheme. Would have liked to see more than just really metallic blues and a brown. His sculpting isn’t that exciting, and the fact that his weapons match his skin color makes him look like a worse figure. His little blade is made of a gray plastic yet his gun and his skin are made from the same plastic. Bad idea, Playmates, bad idea. Oh, he has three weapons and only two hands. Would have been cool if he could actually holster one.

The packaging for both is actually the same for all the Alien Hunter figures in this wave. Unfortunately, it shows four aliens yet we know only that two were made; these two. The packaging does little to explain who these aliens are and why they are invading earth as well. They don’t have any tie in with previously released TMNT media which I think is cool to see Playmates finally make new characters.

Rating: Dumpjumper gets a 4 out of 5 while Thrashmor gets a sad 2 out of 5.

Welcome! And Now For eBay Wednesdays

Hi there! Slash coming in from the other side of the pond... I'm introducing "eBay Wednesdays" to our reviews. This weeks winner of the most expensive item in the Action Figures spot is the "Star Wars Uzay Blue Stars Figure" going for "$2,800.01" at the moment.

The description reads as,
"This auction is for a Uzay Blue Stars Action figure. This is a super rare figure that was produced in Turkey for a limited time in the 1980s. This figure has a huge following because it is so different then anything else and is very much the opposite of the Snowtrooper figure since it is blue.

This figure is in amazing shape with a unpunched super clean card and a nice bubble. The card is near perfect with no creases and hardly a hint of wear. On the back in the upper right corner there is a tiny two specs of paper loss. I don't know how this happened but it is minor. Aside from that the card is super sharp.

The bubble is nice especially for an Uzay figure. It is firmly attached to the card and is not cracked. There is one dent in the upper right side corner but it is not bad and barely shows from the front. The bubble is a bit tinted yellow but not too much. The bubble sealed in nice solid and 100% original.

This is a 100% real vintage carded figure and a very hard piece to find.

Because this piece has a fragile bubble it will be double boxed and packed extremely well so please keep this in mind when looking at the shipping costs.

This is a great example of this very popular figure. Don't miss your chance at a great item. "
Yet, according to sources, the Uzay toyline is a counterfeit Star Wars series. Notice how the packaging and licensing information are different? Notice how there was no such thing as the Blue Stars? Interesting indeed.

So, are counterfeits worth more than the originals? That sounds like an interesting question for later. Well, hopefully we will have a real review up and running soon!

Until then, gofigure!

Wednesday, 13 February 2008

Figured Out

Hey! Glad you could drop by whether you heard about this blog by word of mouth or you randomly surfed on in. This is the beginning of a new action-figure based venture which aims to share the love of toylines and critique the figures we encounter. Whilst Slash and me are still ironing things out on here, the main aim for this is doing it for fun, enjoyment and expression.

dedicated to plastic goodness.