Wednesday, December 22, 2010

YES

BBTS listed the case breakdown for the Generations wave that comes after the Kup/Scourge wave:

Wheeljack (!) and.....THUNDERCRACKER.


Finally! Come springtime, the dance of Seeker completion will be finished.

Unfortunately, it seems that this apparent gift of generosity from Hasbro has also unleashed Phazer from the depths. Not good.


But man, this is a great time to be a TF fan.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Overlord!

I caved on PCC Crankcase when I found him for $15 on Saturday. He's awesome, and does pretty well as an Overlod stand-in, despite the mostly RiD Scourge/Nemesis Prime-esque colors. Best looking PCC 5-pack so far, despite the molds not being intended for each other originally.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

$25 - the conclusion

So, while I'd planned on possibly ordering a couple of PCCs with this late b-day cash, I decided to run by the Kmart to see if they still had any of the newer stuff.

I'm glad I did - not only did they have some new stuff, but they've also matched Walmart's current lowered price on deluxes, so they now only cost $9. They had HftD wave 3 deluxes and also PCC 5-pack wave 3, and I settled on getting the former - Tomahawk and Terradive. I was largely drawn in because of their alt-modes - I'm a sucker for nice looking aircraft TFs - but their bot modes are nice and somewhat unique, as well.

Friday, November 12, 2010

$25

So, my grandma sent me a late b-day check for $25. I'm trying to decide which TFs to get with it, since I've spent more than I should have on them lately. I want to still have a healthy list for folks to choose from for Christmas.

I'm leaning toward some of the wave 2 PCC 2-packs. Mostly because they look awesome, but also because I've only seen one of them - Sledge - on shelves once, and that was back in August. So, I'm kind of worried that if I leave them on the list, I might not get them, especially since stores appear to be restocking the 2-packs with wave 3 - which I'm not really interested in; they're all uninspired repaints - instead of wave 2, despite being clogged with wave 1 for months.

Of course, this means I'd have to order them from HTS, which luckily does have them in stock. on the other hand, I can then only get two due to shipping costs. Sledge is a definite, and I'm leaning toward Leadfoot over Icepick, mostly because Leadfoot looks to have a simply awesome torso mode that will go well with the Rallybot drones from DoubleClutch.

Or I could just pick up some more stuff at retail, like a couple more deluxes. We'll see.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Fun with new, if lower-tier, toys

So, I got Hailstorm a couple of weeks ago. He's great.

I mean, the fact that he's a de facto movieverse version of UT Demolishor is great in and of itself, but it's just a fun mold. Neat tread/arm transformation, too.

Get him. Or his upcoming remold, Mindset.

Also, the TF Club has some mock-ups for their Animated Transtech Cheetor exclusive up on their site, including the art of the Wyatt-designed head. Awesome. I'm pretty excited about this year's exclusives - this guy and G2 Ramjet!

Friday, October 29, 2010

Vengeance

Man, I want Crossovers Ghost Rider for Halloween. He's just now hitting stores, too. Whenever I do get him, he'll be another version of the Fallen for me.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

The evolution of a repaint...

So, Kmart released another legends multi-pack this fall, this time a much better deal than last year's, at least in terms of dollars and cents - instead of 4 legends toys for 25 bucks, you can get five for 22 dollars! Not bad, particularly for Kmart.

Why did I get it? The movie Starscream legends toy, first put out in 2007 (fall; I got it around this time that year) is not the best legends mold ever, but outside of the intentionally different looking repaints (Stealth Starscream/Skywarp, Thundercracker, and the black/teal Nebular-Starscream mimmick), the normal Starscream versions keep improving. The original was actually pretty terrible, in retrospect; look here to see what I mean. The repaint for RotF was better - it added the interesting tattoos that he gained in that movie, and, while still not the color of an F-22, at least the sandy color he had was shared across his torso and arms, giving the robot a consistent, non-wifebeater-wearing look. Now, flash forward to 2010, and the HftD line gets him repainted in pretty much the best possible way. Basically, in your mind, think of the visual difference there was between 2007 Movie Starscream (Voyager) and his Premium/Deep Space repaint. That's how much better HftD Starscream is compared to the RotF repaint. Lots and lots of silver paint over silvery-grey plastic, and he keeps the neat looking tattoos. Paint isn't skimped on for the robot mode, either, so he looks great in both modes.

Now, I just need to sell the other four repaints I don't need. I thought I would like the legends version of the Burning Fallen deco, but in person it's not as nice as the original metallic look (which is the closest any of his toys have gotten to looking like the movie appearance) and it's a bit redundant after getting the Voyager in those colors last year.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

More new stuff!

Went to Orlando again this weekend and found Generations Dirge! I never expected to find wave 4 so soon. No Blurrs around, though.

I also picked up Animated Ironhide from my friend Jason. He's pretty neat. A guy I met at the Toys R Us in Orlando was cool enough to find and pick up an Animated Rodimus for me today, since they didn't have any at the TR we met at. He also offered to hold onto it until we go back early next month, so hopefully he'll do that rather than having me pay the extra for shipping...Thanks again, Nick (and Jason)!

Thursday, October 7, 2010

The Hunt for TRU Animated Exclusives, Part II

So, since I didn't get Animated Ironhide or Rodimus for my birthday, I've got to track them down myself. One of my old friends, who my wife and I are visiting this weekend, was nice enough to check out the Toys R Us in his town yesterday afternoon and found Ironhide and picked him up for me. He said he would ask when they would possibly get more in, but I somehow doubt that it'll be before tomorrow or Saturday. However, one of the two TRUs I normally am able to visit is (sort of) on the way to Orlando (our actual destination for Friday night/Saturday), but it's a bit off the interstate and would add at least 20 minutes to the trip. Still, I'm going to call, and if they have Rodimus, I'm going to try and persuade my wife to let us stop by either on the way down or back up Sunday. But, you know, at least I'm only looking for one.

Thanks, J-Man!

Monday, October 4, 2010

Finally, TFCC mag # 35

I finally got the new club mag in the mail today. I was kind of pissed, since one of the truly new images, that of the new legends class Trailbreaker toy, was released online the other day. However, the one remaining new pic in the mag was worth the wait.

Yes, I'm talking about Generations G2 Optimus Prime. He's very cool, and not quite what I was expecting. He's certainly not just a downscaled version of the original. In fact, you might be forgiven if you thought he was yet another iteration of Movie Optimus Prime. Granted, Movie Optimus borrowed a bit from G2 Optimus in the first place - both were longnose cabs, had decos that didn't directly copy G1 Optimus', and they both have swords.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Ok, so not quite a bust.

So, we went to my parents' house Friday night. I was halfway right about the expectations I had for my mom; she did indeed have my Dad pick up MP Grimlock from TRU, but no luck on Animated Rodimus and Ironhide. We're going to visit some friends of ours this coming weekend, and they have a TRU in their town, so I think I'll have them check or check myself once we get there.

My wife took me to the store Saturday and bought me Iron Man 2 and let me pick out roughly $30 worth of TFs; I got Generations WFC Optimus Prime and PCC Mudslinger. However, I had also gotten a check from my grandmother, so I also picked up Leader Starscream and WFC Bumblebee.

So, all in all, it's not a bad birthday haul, even if it seems numerically small. That sentence rhymes too much. I may still try to pick up another Generations toy or two if they still have them in town, specifically Megatron and Soundwave.

Edit/update: Ok, so I picked up Generations Megatron, Soundwave, and Straxus at the Walmart this afternoon. After I get the two Animated exclusives, that'll be it (save for maybe the odd legends or scout toy) until Christmas!

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Zero Hour

So, the big day is here. So far, all I've got to show for it are two cards - one from my insurance agent, and the other from the 3rd period class of 7th graders I teach. Can't really say I expected that second one. But anyway, nothing else yet. Didn't even finally get the TFCC mag in the mail. However, the wife isn't home from work yet (will be soon), so maybe she'll give me something.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

T-minus ~12 hours!

Well, the b-day drops tomorrow. Ideally, I'm getting at least one or two TFs from my wife, one of them before I go to work. I doubt this last part happens, though. We'll have a pretty busy evening, too, as Wednesday is church night, and we'll be there for at least 2.5 hours or so. I'm most likely not being taken out to dinner. But whatever. My wife's at the gym right now; I can't help but wonder if there's a side trip to Walmart or Kmart before she gets home (with Chik-fil-A for dinner!).

I saw some guy on TFW who went to Target today and walked out with Iron Man 2 on DVD and wave 4 of Generations (Blurr and Dirge). I told my wife that it sounded like he had an awesome afternoon. I'm really just, at this point, hoping that I get to go on a shopping spree or something this weekend after payday.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Transformers: Prime Soundwave


So, here he is - Soundwave from the upcoming Transformers: Prime television show. I have to say he's pretty different from what I expected. I know I've brought up the aesthetic disconnect between War for Cybertron and Prime before, but this is yet again a pretty striking example. WFC Soundwave (who's sort of available now, by the way) looks pretty much nothing like the guy, and, to be honest, if this image was shown to me in isolation, I don't think I'd automatically think it was Soundwave. Still, it's a neat design, and I like that it turns into a real alt mode - a Predator-esque drone airplane.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Argh...

Man, there's all kinds of new crap on Hasbro Toy Shop.com. This is hard!

Especially since my mother-in-law, who stayed for most of the weekend, just had me pick out something online for my birthday. For the past couple of years, she's gotten me a comic/magazine subscription, so I went for a DC subscription to Green Lantern: Emerald Warriors. Had I known the likes of Crankcase, Stakeout, Blurr, and Dirge were on HTS, I totally would have tried to convince her to let me get some of those. Oh well. Maybe at Christmas or with birthday money.

Oh, and no, I didn't get the latest TFCC magazine yesterday. Maybe tomorrow.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

T-minus 5 days...

So, it turns out to be a good thing that I haven't been spending much extra money this month, as we're still barely making it to the end of the month, financially.

Still, my birthday is around the corner, and while my wife may not have the money to get me much, my parents will be meeting up with us next weekend, and (as I noted before) I can at least expect a few things from them.

Also, we've been flooded with images of new stuff this week. Most of them are better images of stuff I first saw at Botcon, but there were a few new surprises among that crop. In addition, some Walmart computer listings revealed a new Wreck-Gar toy, which we quickly saw is, in fact a G1-style Generations toy of the character, as shown on the front cover of the latest TFCC magazine (which I'll hopefully get today...). Inside, another totally unheard-of surprise was also revealed; a new deluxe mold of Generations 2 "Laser Rod" Optimus Prime. Which is interesting, as that was one of the best of the G2 molds (I don't have it, but I do have its later-released repaint into Scourge, a villain from RiD), being very solid and well-articulated. However, the new mold apparently gets around the original's cheaty fake window-chest. Also, the original was not the best in terms of molded detail, with a lot of large, flat panels everywhere and stickers for detail (even RiD Scourge makes use of some stickers), and the new mold apparently won't have that issue either. At any rate, I won't be able to not get it, with it being an Optimus toy, but I'm also glad they're releasing it so I won't feel like I have to track down the actual G2 toy (which is hard to find in good shape for a decent price). I also hope for a repaint in the same vain as the eHobby G2 Ultra Magnus repaint of the original. It's one of the better executions of the "white Prime" Magnus repaints, and it'd be nice to have an affordable version.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Rock Lords

So, apparently, Dwayne Johnson - The Rock - is going to be voicing Cliffjumper in Transformers: Prime. This is unexpected, ridiculous, and pretty awesome.

Also, Amazon leaked some pages from the TF: Prime preview comic the other day, revealing a few character designs, namely Starscream and Bulkhead. We see a lot of Starscream, who is like a really creepy version of his Animated incarnation (no nose! so creepy!) and appears to be in charge of a bunch of those Decepticon car drones. Bulkhead we see less clearly, but he seems to stick pretty close to the Animated design, sans back-mounted kibble "wings." Oh, and then there's Breakdown, who's this massive guy, not at all like his War for Cybertron incarnation* (or any other, for that matter) who is a bit reminiscent of the unused Transtech character Immorticon. He also looks like he could be Bulkhead's blue brother, just more ripped and less fat.



*Why does this matter? Because, according to Hasbro, the War for Cybertron/Exodus continuity (such as it is; the two don't mesh that well) is the same continuity as Transformers: Prime. This is all despite the characters looking virtually nothing like each other across the two stories. Starscream in particular (and the aforementioned Breakdown) is a pretty extreme example, but even Optimus, Bumblebee and Megatron look pretty danged different. WFC has a distinct G1 flavor to it; none of the characters in it that originate from the G1 continuities had a major design overhaul, they're all recognizable (save for maybe Barricade, who takes some cues from the movie version). This is in contrast to TF: Prime, where the character designs seem very much to be a mix of the Animated and Movie/RotF aesthetics.

Friday, September 3, 2010

September is here

Well, it's now September. With the wish list in play, it's now a month until I find out if it was worth the time it took to type up.

My predictions are that I'll get the Toys R Us exclusives on the list - Masterpiece Grimlock and Animated Ironhide & Rodimus - because my mom is really reliable about getting TRU exclusives. However, I've updated the list to show the full range of toys that should be out before Christmas (and many of them are showing up already - Generations waves 2 AND 3 have already been sighted!), so I wonder how overwhelming it looks. I haven't bothered to sit and calculate the full price of all the stuff on there, because I know it's a few hundred dollars.

Still, at this point I'd rather ask for this stuff and be a bit disappointed than get it on my own and get criticized. Last time I talked to my dad about scaling back my collection was about a year ago, for last year's birthday. I haven't done a good job of that (obviously!), but this is my attempt to seriously tackle it.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Well, I made an exception.

If you check out the collection roster, you can see it was updated recently. Yeah, I made an exception to my TF purchase moratorium - Crossovers Spider-Man (specifically, the black repaint of the car mold). You see, this guy is damn hard to find, and this was the only one I've ever seen (down in Orlando this past weekend, no less), so I didn't really think I could pass it up.

It helps (me, at least) that I deemed this guy's existence to be so minimal that he didn't even make the long TF wishlist I gave my wife and mother, so I don't feel too bad. After all, I didn't get anything that was on the list.

And, you know, he's pretty cool. Check out the mini-review here on the Crossovers page; it's the second one down. I'm thinking about even doing a full photo-review for this guy, as I don't think I've seen one yet online since he's so friggin' rare.

I guess I can get rid of that Black Symbiote Spider-Man action figure I got a few years back now.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Random TF thoughts

First: I am now, suddenly, really anticipating Generations/War for Cybertron Megatron. I mean, I was never not going to get him, but since I already had a deluxe, cybertronian G1 Megatron (the Universe Special Edition repaint of the Classics deluxe tank Megatron mold), I didn't quite know where to fit this mold into my "fanon." But I figured it out. One of the neat things about WFC Megatron is how his chest slightly echos the chest design of Classics Voyager Megatron (hereafter "Imperial" Megatron), a toy which I consider to be an upgraded form/new body for the aforementioned Universe SE Megatron. However, Universe SE Megatron looks a bit "primitive" compared to both WFC and Imperial Megatron, what with his missing right hand, being replaced by the not-quite-a-fusion-cannon tank barrel and all.

So, I decided that USE Megatron is Megatron when he's only just begun organizing the 'cons - as per both the Exodus novel and Megatron: Origin, he's modified his "mining tank" alt mode into a combat tank, but it's a bit cobbled together. Later, he upgrades to a body fully designed for combat from the get-go, which is his WFC toy. This also introduces the proper, arm-mounted fusion cannon, and his tank mode now has hover capabilities, but not flight. Much later, when the 'cons have taken over most of Cybertron (much like a time just before the very beginning of the G1 cartoon), he upgrades again into his Imperial body, a much more powerful and imposing form with a Shockwave-esque flying cannon alt mode and wings that convert starlight into energon for his weapon systems.

Second, I've been having a lot of fun over the past two days with Drift and Animated Freeway Jazz. Remember that pic I posted at the beginning of the year, with Jazz holding ROTF Bludgeon's weapons? Yeah, he looks just as awesome wielding Drift's swords. Also, lately, I've got the two paired as a multiversal team tracking down Shattered Glass Wheeljack (yes, Botcon Slice(r)), with SG Ravage as point man, in part inspired by Walky's Botcon Shortpacked posts. I've really taken a liking to the idea that SG Wheeljack and G1 Slicer are, in fact, one and the same - SG Wheeljack ends up dimension-hopping and gets stuck in the G1 Universe for a time, but not before finding himself int he UT universe where he upgrades his body with Autobot combiner tech and energon weapons. Also, the stay in the G1 universe as Slicer explains him having the 'con symbols in addition to his SG Autobot symbol.

Yay for imagination.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Self control...holding...for now.

So, I know it's only been just over a week since I bought my last transformer (HA Jazz), but I already feel kind of proud of myself. I guess it's just because every time I go to the Walmart, I see all this awesome new stuff on the shelves and it's still there the next time.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Attempts at self-control...

So, I convinced my wife to let me pick up Human Alliance Jazz yesterday (get him, he's awesome). However, he's going to be the last of the new stuff that I'll get for a while. Money's tight, and my birthday is coming up at the end of next month, so I'm going to try and let a lot of this new stuff rest on the shelves for a while before getting them (hopefully as gifts!)

So, of the new stuff here's what I have gotten:

PCC Bombshock, Skyburst, Smolder, Huffer, and Searchlight

HftD Dlx Ironhide, Legends Ravage & Rampage, Seaspray, and HA Jazz

Generations Drift & Thrust

SW Crossovers Yoda & IM2 Crossovers Iron Man car

You'll notice that I haven't gotten any toys of the Big 4 characters - Optimus, Bumblebee, Megatron and Starscream. Hopefully, I'll get all of their respective new releases for b-day/Christmas. Believe it or not, I'm actually thinking about scaling back my collecting to just those key characters. It would still allow me to get a fair amount of releases, but it wouldn't be nearly as many toys as I collect now (notice I'm quickly approaching the 1,000 mark!).

Friday, July 23, 2010

S(uck)DCC

Well, Hasbro's SDCC panels have come and gone, with very little new info to comb over. Almost none - save a few things like the 3rd PCC wave, which leaked online last week anyway - of the new stuff from Botcon was shown to the general public here. I'm glad I got to see it at the time, but I wish I had online photos to refer to. Whatever.

At least the new stuff is finally starting to reach something approaching wide distribution.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Star Wars TFs...and their strange charm.

One of my favorite vehicles designed for the Revenge of the Sith movie was the Nimbus/V-Wing. It just looked awesome, and was yet another spacecraft, along with the Eta/Actis, designed to bridge the gap between Episode II's Aethersprite Jedi fighters and the TIE fighters of Episodes IV-VI. So naturally, when Hasbro unveiled sometime ago that they were using the Nimbus for a SWTF design (as one of the cool Ep III Shock Troopers, no less), I was pretty stoked.

However, when I eventually got it, I was a bit disappointed. True, most SWTF molds are not, generally, superb examples of engineering (usually because they have a strange alt mode they have to exactly replicate), but the Shock Trooper's toy had bent wings/solar panels and was a particularly wonky mold, especially in the arms. As a result, it sat in one of the storage tubs for a long while.

However, Hasbro recently released a repaint. Not strikingly different, this Nimbus represents those spacecraft used by the first starfighter pilots of the Empire, and thus is dominated by a grey color scheme, unlike the Republic red of the original. In short, it was different enough to convince me to want it, but not without getting rid of my lackluster older version. Luckily, I managed to pitch it on ebay for a decent price and recently picked up the new version.

I'm really glad I did, as this copy has perfectly aligned wings and a great color scheme (it lacks the very white plastic of the original's robot mode, which helps). Also, I've found renewed interest in the unofficial "hover" bot mode, which is extremely reminiscent of Beast Machines Jetstorm.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Hey, new stuff

So, I managed to find some of the new product at a semi-local TRU yesterday. I'd wanted to get PCC Searchlight and Skyburst, but there weren't either any Skybursts nor Bombshocks left, so I just got all three of the "Commander/Mini-con" 2-packs. Huffer is actually a lot better than I expected. Can't wait to get Skyburst, though; I'm itching to try out the combined modes.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Botcon news review

So, I hadn't really gotten a chance to go over all the new stuff they showed off at the Hasbro panels last weekend. My memory is already a bit fuzzy, so I'm basing this off of TFW's new list (my comments are underlined):

Legends Size Class
- G1 Optimus Prime (Awesome! Now I can have a real Legends G1 Prime in the collection)
- G1 Starscream (he looked really impressive. Glad I never really considered the Universe repaint to be the G1 character)
- G1 Megatron (A handgun! In his original colors! That can be held by the MP Seekers! I never thought we'd see anything like this again)
- G1 Prowl (About time he finally gets something like this, since his Robot Hero was canceled)
- All will have rub symbols (I didn't notice this on the legends, but that's pretty neat!)

Scout Size Class
- G1 Windcharger (First off, Generations scout class! Yay! Secondly, I never really cared about Windcharger, but this toy looked pretty cool, reminding me, at least in spirit, of Cybertron Clocker. Has the same "rail" system that Recon Ironhide does, so he can use his weapons, despite this being a Generations, and not movie, toy)

Deluxe class -
Skullgrin (Darkmount redeco, has a new ram-style head) (Nice enough for what they were going for - kind of a take on Stormbringer pretenders - but I'm not really that invested in the character. Nothing I have to get.
- Scourge (G1, stealth jet, white in color, head elevates in vehicle mode, gun is a mixture of his G1 head-gun and his Targetmaster gun, NOT A TARGETMASTER TOY! (Alt mode is actually based on those Blended-Wing-Body airliner designs I love so much. Looked pretty awesome)
- WFC Cliffjumper (repaint of WFC Bumblebee, Cliffjumper will have "devil horns") (No surprise, but looked good. I guess this will be the last of the Cliffjumpers to be made from a BB?)
- Thunderwing (G1, has detachable drone which does not transform) (Awesome. Detachable drone is a neat throw-in, and both the jet and bot modes looked great, very close to the original).
- Tracks (has a car and flying-car mode) (Really glad to see this guy. I thought he would, if anything, get relegated to repaint/remold status. Also glad they managed to keep a flying car mode!)
- Jazz (has car speakers that pop out of his vehicle mode) (Really great, and again, it's nice that he gets his own mold instead of being made from Universe Prowl. The speakers are neat, new touch that make a lot of sense).
- Perceptor (slightly based on Animated design, will be redeco'd in to REFLECTOR, chest opens to 'scan things') (Very military, the alt mode is actually a half-track to the Animated version's off-road truck. Looked superb)

Other size toys (actually all voyagers, duh)
- Grapple (Universe 2.0 Inferno redeco/remold, will come with crane) (looked WAY better than I thought it would! The crane boom and new head look awesome. Definitely worth getting)
- Lugnut (new mold, WWII style bomber, looks amazing, very bulky) (Absolutely fantastic - managed to still be recognizably Lugnut without being in the Animated stylized aesthetic. Also looked better than the original version, with the fingers very cleverly being formed from wing flaps)
- The Fallen repaint (shown in previous pictures, blue in color) (Still not sure about the colors, but the new, removable face and the folding staff make this one pretty tempting. At least he doesn't look just like the other to versions...)

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

...and it's over.

Well, Botcon actually ended two days ago, but we didn't leave Florida until yesterday morning, and we actually went past home to my parents to visit with them last night, since they had my grandmother with them until this morning. So we didn't get home until lunch time or so today.

My first (and likely only) Botcon was pretty cool. Now I just need Air Shark's guns to straighten out. I really hate bendy plastic, and FP should have taken that into account and at least put them (and the loose Sky-Bytes) in cheap cardboard boxes or something.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Con Hauls and the Hall of Fame....

Ok, so Soundwave didn't win the Hall of Fame. I don't really know how, but it doesn't matter because he'll win next year or some other time int he near future. Dinobot won.

I should also share that I managed to trade a couple of Hard Hero statues for Botcon Banzai-Tron and Skyquake and BW Silverbolt (who I've been wanting for a while recently). I then managed to trade Skyquake (who is not a Seeker and really shouldn't have been done with that mold) for Universe Chevy Aveo Swerve! I never thought I'd own that figure, but he's pretty great. Wonderfully unique transformation.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Man...it's going to be a long day.

Well, after getting back to my cousin's, he and I stayed up until 2 am. Then my son wakes me up at 5:30, and I'm leaving to go back to the con in 30 min. I haven't even really had time to look at the toys - so far, I've only opened the Timelines Landquake and Breakaway I needed to complete Nexus Prime. They're actually pretty nice, particularly Breakaway.

Overall, I got the boxed set, a loose set, and 1 each of the souvenirs, giving me these toys to sell: all the loose stuff (Spark, Clench, Breakdown, Streetwise, Skybyte) and 2 of the Sharkticons and Scorch. I'm keeping everything else (at least for the short term - if I can suckers someone into trading me a SG Megatron for Double Punch or something like that, I'll totally part with some of these).

Thursday, June 24, 2010

We're here!

Got here to my cousin's in Orlando around 4:30. Headed out to pick up in about 30 min!

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Florida Invasion!....or Basement Convention, or something...

Well, in less than 24 hours, we'll be on our way to Botcon 2010 in Orlando! We're planning to leave at 8 AM, meet up with my wife's friend in a town about an hour away at about 9 AM, and then move on from there! A direct trip would be about 6.5 hours or so, but we'll be making at least two stops, so we'll probably arrive in the late afternoon. Which is fine; that should give me just enough time to get us settled in at my cousin's house, have dinner, and then hang out at the pool before going over for pick-up at 9pm (I can't believe that I can't get in line until then. Oh well; it gives me an "official" reason to stay up late). I'll probably make another post late tomorrow evening, if only to give a rough first impression of the toys.

Which, by the way, it seems we know most of the at-con exclusives now:

Gnaw/Sharkticon (Energon Sharkticon repaint, possibly a multi-pack)
Rapido (Universe Prowl repaint w/new head remold, as seen a few posts back)
Slicer/Shattered Glass Wheeljack (Energon Downshift repaint; the toy appears to be both characters)
Double Punch (Energon Scorponok repaint)
Scorch (Universe deluxe Hound repaint)
Shattered Glass Ravage (Universe Ravage repaint)
Cindersaur (BWX/Cybertron Megatron repaint; not definitively this character)

Pretty sure that's all of them...I'm most looking forward to Slicer/Wheeljack, Ravage, Rapido, Double Punch, and Cindersaur. Gnaw and Scorch are really the only unappealing ones.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

I did not win the waiting game.

Back in March, I wrote about how I wanted the ROTF Walmart exclusives Beachcomber and Trenchmouth, but didn't want to pay full price for them since they came packed with two repaints that I didn't want, Slapdash and Deadlift. I reported that I'd totally jump on them if I saw them clearanced for $5 per pair, as I had seen reported online.

Well, 3 months later, I have never seen any kind of clearance on these toys. And lately, the only thing I'd really been hunting was HA Mudflap, hoping to use the Recon Ravage coupon on him. However, I really doubt that I'll find him at retail before July 1st (I'm banking on finding him at Botcon). With all that in mind, and not having gotten anything new in a while (save Dion), I decided to finally cave on these guys today. It wasn't so bad; between the coupon and a gift card I had gotten from a student last month, the 2 sets were about as cheap as they would have been on clearance anyway.

As of now, I've only actually opened/transformed Beachcomber and Trenchmouth (Who's Movieverse BW Inferno to me); I haven't decided if I'm going to keep Slapdash and Deadlift or try to trade/sell them next week at Botcon. For now, I'll add them to the inventory, but they may not stay long.

Oh, and Infernomouth is awesome. He actually has better quality control than Knock-Out/Wasp, something I didn't expect. This is mostly due to the fact that his waist really locks in place in bot mode. Oh, and he does look nice, too, not to mention appropriate as Inferno - even my son, without prompting, said he turned into an "ant-motorcycle" when looking at his packaging photos.

edit: And, wow, I now have 101 individually transforming ROTF toys. Granted, this includes stuff like Stratosphere's mini-Optimus and the individual Legendstator components, but man, that seems like a lot.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Reorganizing the Invasion, Part Deux

Last summer, I spent some time rearranging the toys downstairs, producing a display that has lasted for most of the last year. I've started rearranging it again, though.

On the chest-of-drawers, All the Optimus Prime toys have stayed, but everyone else (Ultra Magnuses, Primals, the Cybertron Prime candidates, etc) was moved up to where the Megatrons were.

It's actually the Megatron toys that precipitate this whole thing, since after Christmas, I couldn't fit both TM II and Megabolt Megatrons on the Megatron shelf. Now, they (and all Galvatrons, including the previously uninvited Universe Galvatron) all are on the chest-of-drawers opposing the Optimus toys.

The Starscreams are all still at the top (now unencumbered by TM II Megatron). The book shelf is going to change; it has mostly hosted Movie/ROTF toys for the last year; now, it will display characters who have many iterations from different toylines, such as the various Prowls, Ironhides, Seekers, Scorponoks, and so on.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Hot Shot Part Deux

We got back late last night from being out of town for several days. While on the road, I'd seen online that the TF Collector's Club had begun shipping out this year's "free" toy (that you get just for paying the membership fee), Elite Guard Dion. I was a bit worried, since I didn't know if he'd be shipped in a little box that would fit in the mailbox and could hide there until we got back. Luckily, that turned out to be the case, and he was waiting in the mailbox when I got home.

The figure itself looks great. The orange and blue, of course, got well together, and the white is a good choice for an accent color. Cop-Tur, his mini-con, also looks good; being mostly blue with some orange and silver apps. Overall, I think they both look better, color-wise, than both Hot Shot and Jolt (well, the Henkei versions, at least).

Of course, the toy(s) also share the same problems I have with the Japanese release. The toe joint is floppy, making Dion hard to stand up. The left lower leg pops off a bit too easily just below the knee. Cop-Tur doesn't lock into the spoiler like he's supposed to. The rear wheel back kibble can't get out of its own way unless Dion's arms stick straight out. Cop-Tur can't stand up without leaning far forward. Et cetera.

And then there's the fictional issues I have with the toy; I don't really know where to place him. He's intended to be part of the Wings of Honor Universe that the club is building on in this year's club comic. That universe is very similar to the G1 cartoon universe, but with some slight changes; one of those changes is that, after being severely wounded by Megatron (a la War Dawn), Dion's fate isn't unknown. Fans have speculated that cartoon Dion was rebuilt into either Ironhide or Ultra Magnus (I'm in the Magnus camp, myself). WoH Dion was rebuilt into...Dion. Who can apparently just up and join the Elite Guard immediately afterward. Oh, and he has an Earth car mode millions of years before cars will exist on Earth.

So you see my problem. It's confounded by the fact that I really don't like seeing UT molds (and yes, I consider this a UT mold. It's a UT character and has a minicon port) being utilized in other fictional universes. So I'm trying to figure out a way for this toy to simply be UT Dion, even though the UT doesn't have an Elite Guard and already has an Ultra Magnus.

Lastly, it's hard to shake the feeling that this toy is just Elite Guard Hot Shot. The color scheme isn't too far removed from being a plausible Hot Shot scheme (his Cybertron mold had a ton of blue, and orange is of course close to yellow). And, more importantly, this mold was specifically designed to be Armada Hot Shot. It's hard to look at him and not see the impetuous young Autobot.

But yeah, he does look great.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Rapido!


I'm officially excited for the convention now. This isn't the best pic, but his new head mold is great, and the colors scheme just works so well. This will probably be the best version of the mold that I'll own (and I'll own FIVE after the convention).

Monday, May 31, 2010

Masterpiece Grimlock





We've known about MP Grimlock since Valentine's Day. However, we now see his packaging, which is pretty swank. It has a lot of similarities to the packaging of both MP Starscream and Skywarp, but is obviously done up in the style of the Generations line (even if it doesn't say so). More pics at TFW.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

New stuff on HTS (sort of)

Hasbro Toy Shop has once again had a major transformers update. Unfortunately, it doesn't involve getting Human Alliance Mudflap back in stock; rather, they've put up for preorder a bunch of the new stuff shown off at ToyFair back in February. Stuff like Hunt for the Decepticons movie toys, the first wave of Power Core Combiners, and also the first wave of Generations deluxe toys.

Which is all pretty cool, because I'm excited about almost all of that stuff, except that these, again, are preorders, but they don't ship until August 9th. Makes it all kind of a tease, especially since the toys will probably/hopefully be on US shelves much sooner (hopefully by Botcon next month). They're actually already out in places like Malaysia and Australia, so it really should only be a few weeks before they get here. Which is good, because the pickings are getting very slim at the local Walmart (which never got the ROTF NEST wave with Ratchet and Lockdown, mind you).

Anyway, at least this shows that Hasbro is moving ever closer toward releasing all this awesome new product.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Well, more like $500.

So I registered for Botcon Friday night. I signed up for the Primus package (~$300) and an extra bagged set of the toys ($210) and, after slapping the ten dollar registration fee on top of all that, I'm now over $500 out for this thing. Luckily, I already have most of that saved up for; the cash is literally sitting here. I've got to get it to my dad this week, since I registered on his line of credit.

But I'm pretty excited. I showed my wife some encouraging completed ebay sales of previous years' Botcon toys to help her see that, yes, it is possible that I might be able to pay for the whole trip by selling the extra set of toys (and then some). I also haven't been to Orlando in a long time, and I'll be staying for free with my cousin, so that should be cool.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

This is what I'm going to drop $300 on - part V.

























And, so, here's Sky-Byte. In him, we finally get a repaint of the fantastic Energon Sharkticon mold and it's done in nice colors and with a new head to boot. Now, I really don't know much about SkyByte as a character, since I never watched Robots in Disguise, so I'm not having fanboy seizures over him, but I always like it when a character can get transplanted from one continuity (especially somewhat obscure/forgotten/underused ones) to another, more popular one (in this case, one of the G1 continuities). In the G2: REdux story, apparently SkyByte is one of the first Predacons, hinting that this continuity will lead into some version of Beast Wars.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

This is what I'm going to drop $300 on - part IV.
























So, here's the real Botcon exclusive Clench. I'm very pleased with this toy; I think it may be my favorite from the set.


Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Hall of Fame day 3

The 3rd nominee is Jazz. He's a pretty good choice, and I'm thinking that he might be the only 1984 Autobot car character to choose from. Which I won't; as stated, Soundwave gets my vote.

Oh, and I decided to open Recon Ravage last night. I'm glad I did; he actually does look pretty awesome in hand and also quite different from the original version. Also (and I don't know why it took me so long to think of this), but I finally made fictional sense of him, too - he's ravage after being rebuilt following his death at the hands of Bumblebee. Sure, he doesn't look like this in the post-ROTF comics (where he has been resurrected), but the vaguely-patchwork look he has really sells the "rebuilt without a new paint job" idea I've got.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

The Hall of Fame

So, Hasbro let fans know recently that they're making a Transformers Hall of Fame. The "inaugural class" this year will have 5 characters, with four already chosen by Hasbro. They are, pretty predictably:

Optimus Prime
Megatron
Bumblebee
Starscream

The fifth character is to be chosen by the fans via online voting next Monday, the 10th. The nominees were culled from various websites' own polling, and this week Hasbro is posting the 5 different nominees. Yesterday began with Soundwave as the first nominee, and today the second was revealed to be Grimlock.

So, you know, I'll be voting for Soundwave. It just makes sense. He's iconic in the same way Optimus is, and, arguably, is the more recognizable Decepticon compared to either Megatron or Starscream (most people remember "the tape player guy.")

What's neat is that the winner won't be revealed until the Saturday night dinner at Botcon. And I'll get to be there, so that's pretty cool.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

I got a letter from Optimus Prime

Well, it's taken a while, but Recon Ravage was waiting on my doorstep after we got back from the park. Honestly, I think I'm most excited about the "$5 off any $20 or more ROTF toy" coupon than anything else; if Human Alliance Mudflap ever appears (within two months, anyway, this coupon expires on July 1st!), I'll use it on him.

Not quite sure what to do with Recon Ravage himself. He looks a little better in person than he did online (especially the chrome, it's pretty awesome), but I'm not scrambling to get him out of the packaging like I am with most transformers. I think it's the yellow that I don't really care for. I'm pretty sure I'm going to keep him, but I may just leave him in package for a while, maybe even take him to Botcon to trade or put him on eBay in a year or two...

Oh, and speaking of cats arriving at my house, exactly two weeks after my daughter was born, my smaller cat had her four kittens. She's a patchwork of white and dark grey, and the kittens are as follows: 2 white, 1 like its mother, and one almost solidly dark grey except for a white patch above its eye (one of them, not sure which).

And I also caved on the Kmart Mini-con 10 pack last night. It's actually pretty awesome, mostly solid repaints. Especially Longview; can't wait to crack him out for the Fourth of July.

p.s.: I've got several pages up now for the mini-reviews; many of them did end up including several toylines (that are at least thematically connected), but I guess the biggest one missing right now is a G1 page. Also, I'll have to shoehorn Machine Wars Megaplex in somewhere; he's not getting his own page. Maybe I can just make a G1/G2/MW page, since MW, for all intents and purposes, seems to be in the G1 continuity (and really is just shy of being a G3 toyline).

Sunday, April 25, 2010

ROTF Ratchet mini-review

Added mini-review for ROTF deluxe Ratchet. Not to mention a page for ROTF reviews! The page may eventually turn into a catch-all for any movie-themed toys (2007 movie, Hunt for the Decepticons, and so on).

And no, I'm not going to do a front-page update for every single mini-review, but probably will whenever I add a new page for a different toyline.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

This is what I'm...wait, no, nevermind.













No, this isn't real. The real Botcon Clench will be much cooler.


Is it weird that I actually don't think this looks that bad?

This is what I'm going to drop $300 on - part III.













Well, here's Streetwise. Well, not really. He's now called Streetstar (sounds like his dancer name, I guess). Like Breakdown, Streetwise (I'm going to stick with the original name, thanks) started off as a G1 character, one of the "Scramble City" combiner limbs who, along with his fellow Protectobots, was supposed to be repainted for G2. This never happened for whatever reason, so we're getting another G2 toy that never really was. Which is pretty cool.

However, I'm not too excited by the character. I've never really cared for the Protectobots in general. Streetwise, to me, has always been, simply, That Other Autobot Police Car. He's the poor man's Prowl. He's especially so now, since he's repainted from the Universe Prowl mold. And the colors, while accurate to the proposed G2 repaint, really just make him look like Stealth Silverstreak.

It's not all bad, though. He looks pretty damned sharp in car mode, which also has the awesome combo G2 Autobot sigil/police sheild that was exclusively on Streetwise, not unlike movie Barricade's Decepticon police sheild. Also, I don't own any version of this character, so it may as well be the Botcon version that I can sell for decent money if I really don't want him down the road. And, as I kind of mentioned, he'll do well as Breakdown's opposite number.

Mini-reviews

I'm now undertaking a project on this site that's going to take a long while to finish. I'm writing mini-reviews on each of the toys listed in my collection, starting with Energon Cruellock, Sharkticon, Universe Bonecrusher (Target version) and Classics Ramjet. Each line (well, roughly each line) will have its own page. They will all be linked to this main page and to each other. Each review will specifically list the toy's faction, size class, time of release, and accessories along with the actual mini-review paragraph.

Wish me luck!

Oh, and while I'll do a full post once actual toy pics are shown, the Botcon site has put up artwork of Clench, who's an awesome remold (new head) of Universe Onslaught, just like I wanted. Slammin'.

edit: Breaking news!
Turns out they are making a Rapido repaint for Botcon! Awesome! Of course, it's a crappy pic missing the head section, so we don't know if there's a head remold or not. Then again, the pic is of the toy in alt mode, so even if the piece was there, we couldn't see the head. So, while this means that after Botcon I'll own five (!) version of this mold, I'm pretty happy that one of them is based on one of the most fun little toys I got in 3rd grade. Oh, this reminds me - I need to do part 3 in the Botcon post series.

Friday, April 16, 2010

...man. It's been a big week.

Me and my wife's second child was born this past Monday morning!

She's a little girl and was born with 6 lbs and 0.8 oz and is 19.5 inches long. She's a fantastic little child and our son, who'll be three next month, seems to be adjusting to her pretty well. It was a Cesarean delivery, too, and my wife is recovering and a pretty good pace. We got to leave the hospital around 10:00 on Wednesday morning, but we had to drive all the way to our pediatrician (almost an hour) so we could go ahead and get the appointment out of the way before bringing her back home. I've taken the whole week off and will be going back to work on Monday, but my wife will be staying out for several weeks. Which is nice; when our son was born, her job at the time didn't allow here to take but maybe a week and a half off!

So, as you can imagine, we've been pretty busy around here.

In transformer related news, my wife had purchased ROTF Lockdown for me as an Easter gift, which was greatly appreciated. I also used some spare money to get a few things off ebay to fill in some gaps in the collection.

I got:

Universe Battle for the Cyber Keys Sam's Club exclusive 5-pack

Legends of Cybertron Red Alert, Leobreaker, Evac, Scourge, and Jetfire.

Also, I nabbed the one ROTF Evac at the local Kmart (that was a surprise, let me tell you). I just couldn't resist the newness of him...even the red Rampage repaint looked tempting, but I'm holding off for the new-mold, non-combining Legends version of him.

Friday, April 2, 2010

This is what I'm going to drop $300 on - Part II.








































Well, G2: Redux has gotten even more eye-searing, and we're only 2 toys into the set!

This here is Generation 2 Breakdown. Like of the early G1 toys, this guy (and the rest of his group, the Stunticons) were set to receive ridiculous G2 repaints. However, THe G2 Stunticons were never produced in appreciable amounts, and only Breakdown got any sort of real release. Apparently, he was the very first Botcon exclusive back in 1994 (when G2 was still current, and I was 11!).

He's repainted from the Universe Sunstreaker/Sideswipe mold, although obviously with an all-new, great and totally accurate head mold.

I am disappointed that we haven't see Pyro/Spark's bot mode (not officially, anyway), as there is some doubt as to whether or not he too will receive a head remold (and he, like Breakdown, really needs one).

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

This is what I'm going to drop $300 on.

















The Botcon folks have put up the first image of one of this year's convention exclusives, and as you can see above, it's Pyro! Or, well, Spark. Which is more appropriate, since the theme (as is clearly evident) is Generation 2, and Pyro's actual G2 release name is Spark. Which I didn't know until I looked it up last night.

Anyway, the short history lesson to help you understand why this violently gaudy toy is actually cool:

Transformers began back in 1984 and had a good, solid run up until about 1990. That last year offered nothing but non-transforming Action Masters (I still have Devastator/Scorpulator) and a bevy of tiny Micromasters (which I also have a lot of). After that, Transformers disappeared from American store shelves.

Well, not for too long. 3 long (well, to a kid's perception) years later, in 1993, Hasbro returned Transformers to the shelves with the Generation 2 toyline. It began, largely, with repainted (or otherwise changed, such as with new weapons) Generation 1 toys and a handful of smaller new molds (that honestly weren't much different than your average G1 toy). Thing was, a lot of these G1 repaints - like, say, Ramjet - often had very bright, neon, or clashing color schemes. A lot of these color schemes also carried over into the increasingly high number of new molds that the line acquired over the next two years before its end in 1995.

So, what about Pyro/Spark?

Well, remember that gap between the Generations 1 & 2 toylines? That didn't exist everywhere. Like in Europe, where the G1 toyline ran so long that it actually overlapped a bit with the American G2 toys. In Europe's G1 toyline in 1993, a new mold Autobot leader toy named Pyro was released. When Europe belatedly made the switch to G2 the next year in 1994, Pyro got rereleased and renamed, this time as Spark. And those two releases are the only ones he ever got.

Flash forward to 2010, and IDW has an current comic called Last Stand of the Wreckers, about some relative nobodies getting recruited into the Wreckers, the elite Autbot fighting group that engages in missions so dangerous that most Wreckers end up dead. One of these nobodies is the aforementioned Pyro (going by that name). Author Nick Roche plays up his toy's physical resemblance to Optimus Prime, basically casting Pyro as a Prime emulator/wannabe. This comic portrayal has increased his standing as a character in the fandom, and, let's be honest, that's mostly because it's his only existing real character treatment. Of course, being in the hands of Roche doesn't hurt.

So, take a character whose toy is rare and has recently stepped into the comics limelight, and the club has really got something good on their hands. So, despite how Pyro looks, I'm pretty excited to have him as part of the first (and probably only) Botcon set I'll be getting.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Man, Power Core Combiners look cool.




Some more pictures of some PCCs (Searchlight/Backwind and Smolder/Chopster) have surfaced, and they've really just sent me into a fit. I cant' wait 'till these guys are released later this year. They're so Unicron Trilogy, it hurts. And what's great is that they're basically a melting pot of all the major UT gimmicks: minicons, energon weapons, and combiner (E. Prime style). Ok, so there aren't any cyber keys, but I don't think anyone's complaining about that.

I just hope that they sell well enough to convince Hasbro to make some at a bigger size class, because, as it stands, the biggest individual toys are only scout class.

update: Also, here's an awesome new pic of Bombshock.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

The clearance waiting game

So, a few weeks back I convinced myself into wanting 4 current Walmart exclusives that, at first, I was pretty uninterested in.

They've got 2 two-packs of ROTF scout repaints. One set has Beachcomber (a blue Dune Runner) and Deadlift (a black & orange Dirt Boss), and the other has Slapdash (an orange Detour/Dead End) and Trenchmouth [a(nother) red Knock Out].

Truth be told, I'm really still not interested in either Slapdash or Deadlift. Slapdash's mold is pretty good (I really like Detour), but it's really hard for me to swallow it being an autobot, since it's so monstrous, even if the colors and alt mode make it a great G1 Wheelie homage. Deadlift is an homage to a Gobots forklift with the retarded name of "Spoons" (as evinced by the alphanumeric code that the two toys share). The colors are ok, and I've kind of bought into his bio (basically, he's the guy who lifts the bodies of the dead Decepticons into the smelting pools for parts reuse). Even so, he's still not something I'd probably buy if he was a single-packed release.

Beachcomber and Trenchmouth, however, are actually kind of cool. Beachcomber, for starters, is kind of one of those no-brainer repaints - Dune Runner looks something like a dune buggy, and Beachcomber was the original TF dune buggy, plus the head mold (with its visor) isn't a bad match. And after skipping out on Energon Beachcomber a few years back (who's really expensive on the aftermarket, by the way), I'd kind of like a multiversal equivalent to hang out with my Universe Legends Beachcomber.

Trenchmouth is desirable for much more oblique reasons. Firstly, as I noted, he's a repaint of ROTF Knock Out. Besides being a great mold, Knock Out is also pretty much ROTF Wasp/inator (despite being an Autobot). Now, the first repaint of Knock Out was also a red Decepticon - Reverb. And while most thought Reverb was an homage to a Gobot motorcycle (and he really does look like Dart), it turns out he's actually an homage to that other BW hymenopteran, Inferno the fire ant. This is pretty cool, as it shows that Hasbro wanted to use the mold to homage not just one, but two insectoid BW Predacons. Well, it would be pretty cool, except that Reverb's overall look kind of sucks. Then Trenchmouth comes along - here's another red Decepticon repaint of Knock Out! In other words, he manages to look better than Reverb while still filling the same basic aesthetic niche. Sure, some of the specific Inferno callouts aren't there - there's no "97" racing numbers or "Colony Racing" logo, nor the teal accents, but overall it still works, while also adding one of the better looking cyberglyphics tattoos from the movie. So, when I boil it all down, I want Trenchmouth because I'd like Knock Out/Wasp to have an evil counterpart who's also based on another BW Predacon (Inferno, who, at least visually/structurally, also resembled Waspinator quite a bit) without the sucky look of Reverb.

Of course, they can't make it easy on me and put Beachcomber and Trenchmouth/Inferno in the same package. No, they're both put in with the two I don't really want. So, to avoid paying ~$32 for 2 toys I want and 2 I don't, I'm waiting to see if these two sets go on clearance, as I've seen they have elsewhere, for only $5 a pop. That would mean that'd I'd pay only $10 for 4 toys - rendering the 2 I don't want free and one of the 2 I do want heavily discounted, as one scout toy on its own costs $8.

While they haven't hit clearance anywhere that I've seen them yet, I checked again today with the wife, and she specifically tried to memorize the names of the 2 sets. I might be getting them for Easter of something.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Life support

My wife's pretty sick. I was sick the other day myself, but she's particularly not dealing with it well. Because of this, my parents (fresh back from their cruise yesterday) ended up coming to our house this afternoon; we had originally planned to go to them. They cooked lunch, and my mom and I cleaned up a bit.

Somewhat appropriately, my dad also brought the resident Autobot medic, Ratchet, with him. As I've noted earlier, he managed to snag one early last week. However, he wasn't aware that I'd found my own Arcee, and he also picked up one of those he found in Florida - he actually went out of his way on vacation to check a Toys R Us for a toy for me. What an awesome dude. What this means, of course, is that now I have an extra MISB Animated Arcee on my hands. I'm trying to decide how long to hold onto it before unloading it on ebay.

Oh, and Cybertronian Ratchet is neat. I love how he's a totally different toy from the original deluxe Animated Ratchet, but still manages to capture his character. Too bad we're not getting cybertronian versions of Prowl, Bulkhead, and Bumblebee so that the entire main cast gets the pre-Earth treatment.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Scattornot

I found the recently reported variant of ROTF Scattorshot today. The gray plastic that makes the initial release to terrible looking has been replaced with a much nicer, darker gray. So much nicer looking that it changed my mind about making a purchase.

One thing I like is when Transformers from continuities other than G1/BW get updated or homaged in newer lines - like 2007 Evac, or Universe Hot Shot. This time, ROTF has a new scout mold that's an homage to Cybetron Scattorshot. Pretty cool, right?

I guess. But other than the color scheme, there isn't much about this guy that screams Scattorshot. He doesn't have the goggles or the visor. He doesn't turn into a military vehicle. He transforms totally differently, and his robot mode proportions are pretty different, too. Dune Runner and/or Beachcomber make better Cyb. Scattorshot homages.

In fact, the more you look at this mold, the less it looks like Scattorshot and more like Animated Sentinel Prime. The smooth crown with twin striping, the blue pickup with "snowplow," the roof-mounted weapons, the fake hood-chest kibble, the angled back kibble, the wheels near the shoulders, it's all there.

But since a Sentinel Prime already exists in the movieverse, I'm just calling this guy "Sentinel." Or maybe "Sentinel Minor."

Sunday, February 28, 2010

No pics for now...

Can't post pics right now since the wife's computer is on the fritz, and mine is too old to be able to accept SD cards, and we don't have an adapter.

Also, any worries about the tax return are now over, so Botcon is still a go. Hooray.

Possibly bad news: my wife went to the obstetrician the other day, and she isn't measuring as big as she should be. So I'm praying that when we go in for the ultrasound tomorrow that everything's ok with our daughter (who still doesn't have a first name, by the way).

Friday, February 26, 2010

Ok, so maybe I do own them.

Ok, I was able to pick up the Animated Arcee being held for me today. I'm so glad I called - they only got these in this Wednesday, and there were none left on the shelves. Cybertronian Ratchet (they had 2 of those left) is still at my parents', and I probably won't pick it up from them until next weekend, as they've just today left for a week-long cruise.

I also found and picked up ROTF Skystalker at a Target. He's pretty damned awesome.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Animated Arcee and Cybertronian Ratchet...I don't own them.

I've only checked for these 2 toys twice myself. The fact that they're Toys R US exclusives means that even checking a store requires driving at least an hour away. I got my mom to check a store on her route home from work yesterday, but still no dice. I'm thinking about checking my closest store again today, but fear walking away empty handed after driving all the way there just for those 2 toys.

Why, oh why, couldn't these be mass releases or, at least, Walmart exclusives?



Update on 2/24: Well, I may not yet own them, but I soon will. My dad (rather unexpectedly) picked up Ratchet on Monday, and I called the local TRU this afternoon, and they've got an Arcee set aside with my name on it. Got to decide if I want to go all the way there on Friday night or just wait until Saturday morning...

At any rate, I'll do another set of photos this weekend with the new Animated deluxes, and the recent ROTF legends I promised to take pics of.

Sadly, the Animated TRU exclusives will be the last TFs I should be buying on my own for a while...I told my wife that I'd not buy any until Botcon this summer (however, I may not be able to go at this point if our tax return is as bad as we think it might be). So, I'm hoping that my wife/parents will get me a couple of the new NEST deluxes and scouts for Easter and/or random gifts.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Devastation on the small scale...

My son and I finally found Legends Devastator yesterday after a whirlwind tour of "local" Walmarts.

He merited a RPMs Bumblebee for his good humor during the hunt.

Legendstator is about as awesome as I thought he'd be. Very fun.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Yep, more Legends

My wife actually let me go a bit out of the way to stop at a Walmart on the way to my parents' this afternoon. I was hoping to find Legendstator (of course I didn't!).

However, I did find the newest wave of ROTF Legends, which I really didn't expect (especially not this locally) to see for at least another few weeks. This wave only has 3 new toys - Arcee, Jolt, and Stealth Bumblebee (repaint). I got all three using a gift card for Christmas and only owed 95 cents. it was pretty great, and now that's 3 less toys on my Spring Wants list. I'll probably post pics tomorrow.

Happy Valentine's Day

So, the Valentine's dinner last night was a success. Seasoned steak, lobster tail, baby portabella mushrooms, asparagus, and salad with homemade raspberry vinaigrette. It was delicious, plus chocolate-covered strawberries for dessert. Yum. Oh, and my wife got me a 20 dollar gift card to be used toward a TF, so that means between that card and my remaining Christmas card, Legendstator will be free when I find him!

As for Toy Fair, where to begin? 2010 clearly looks like the real 25th anniversary, with so much great stuff coming down the pipe.

I guess I'll start with the Movie toys. As noted before, the current Revenge of the Fallen toyline is being "canceled" - but not really. It's getting a name and packaging change later in the year (maybe soon, like late spring?) and will now be called Hunt for the Decepticons. Which I'm grateful for, as all of the previously seen package images didn't have the little sticker with that name, leading me without a proper handle for the toyline. But no matter, it's now Transformers: HFTD, or maybe even just Transformers: HD. As in, HFTD Deluxe Ironhide or HD Leader Starscream.

Beginning with HFTD Legends:

-Ravage: Awesome. I was really hoping they'd do this, if onyl so we could have a transforming Ravage toy that could be displayed alongside ROTF Soundwave. Is it sad that this was one of the toys I was most excited about seeing yesterday afternoon?

-Rampage - totally new mold - as in, not the Rampage legends toy that comes with Legendstator - and in red. Also, his jackhammer leg can split in two, just like the deluxe. His tread/claw arms are really reminiscent of Energon Landmine's "brute" mode.

- Long Haul - again, another totally new, non-Legendstator mold. Looks good enough, although not necessarily as better than the original as Rampage's new mold does. I find it interesting that two total non-characters in the movie are also the first to get 2 separate legends toys in the same toyline (well, if you count ROTF and HFTD to be the same line, which they really are).

- Sandstorm - repaint of Universe Beachcomber in G1 Sandstorm colors. Not bad, but I don't know if I need it.

- Fireburst Optimus Prime - another not-totally-different repaint of ROTF Legends Prime, but a heck of a lot better looking than the Power Armor version I'm currently saddled with. I might get him.

- Cyberfire Bumblebee - ROTF Legends 'Bee with one stripe instead of two. Lame.

- I think that's it.

HFTD Scouts:

- Brimstone: Awesome Decepticon chopper bike with blue and green flames and a terrifying (if hilarious) bot mode. Basically, Cybertron Lugnutz done right. In one of the better uses of bike wheel kibble ever, the front wheel splits to form circular blades (with little clawed hands!).

- Hubcap: A red, Autobot, 30s-style hot rod. Absolutely great, and makes up a bit for the fact that Crankstart is just a Dune Runner repaint and not the Ransack/Model-T design we saw last year. This was the one toy yesterday that my wife desrcibed as "pretty cool," even saying that her dad would like it.

- Insecticon: looks just like the robotic fly Sam kills in the ROTF movie, but with a sick bot mode. Lovely. Wonder how long it will take to get the G1-color repaint?

- Breacher: Blue, Autbot armored vehicle (APC?), along the lines of Movie Wreckage. Between the name and colors, it honestly seems more like an upgraded form for ROTF Beachcomber.

- Backfire - ROTF Knock Out in what looks like G1 Ramjet's colors. Autobot. Pass.

-Crankstart - ROTF Dune Runner in black with yellow stripes. This toy should die solely for not being the Ransack Model-T mentioned above.

HFTD Deluxes:

- Elita-1: Disappointingly, just a repaint of Chromia. Still, at least she exists.

- Hailstorm: Awesome, awesome Decepticon multi-missle launching tank (think CD Scattorshot). All 8 (!) missiles actually launch, though. Green camo deco.

- Ironhide: Looks pretty damn great when correctly transformed. Still has the familiar multi-barreled right-arm cannon, but the left arm cannon has been replaced by some kind of different-looking cannon emplacement thing that's a "drone" somehow. It can also attach to his truck bed. Pretty damn cool overall; Ironhide has adjusted to this smaller size even better than Ratchet.

- Sidearm Sideswipe: SASS, in other words. A totally new ROTF Sideswipe mold. Mostly silver car mode with red flames at the front (looks a bit like Drift, actually), completely new (sort of backwards) transformation, and a bot mode with guns rather than swords. Neat.

- Jetblade: White/light blue repaint of ROTF Dirge. For some people, that automatically makes this a new ROTF Ramjet toy, but I'm pretty satisfied with my current ROTF Ramjet, and this guy, along with his new name and sufficiently new color scheme, would serve as a new Seeker character for me. Not sure if I'll get him, though.

- Sea Attack Ravage: Looks more movie-accurate than either regular Ravage or Recon Ravage. And honestly, I would have preferred this to be the mail-away version. But whatever. I probably won't be getting it.

- Battle Blade Bumblebee: Apparently a totally new deluxe ROTF BB mold. To keep myself from being branded a "Energon Starscream is totally a remold of G2 Smokescreen!" kind of guy, I'll just say that the lower legs/calfs/shins don't look very different from the previous deluxe movie BBs. However, everything else (even the toes and heels attached to those lower legs) does appear to be brand new, and fairly ambitious at that. His right actually manages to transform between hand and plasma cannon, and his left arm houses a pretty cool flip-out energon axe. He also has a new battle mask head (don't know if it retracts). I'll be getting him (and even then, I'll still have only 4 total deluxe Movie BBs).

HFTD Voyagers:

- Battle Blades Optimus Prime - Optimus finally gets a new voyager mold, after having his 2007 voyager mold languish in Unending Crappy Repaint Hell for 3 years. This mold, like the ROTF leader mold, is very movie accurate, has both arm swords, but also has a chest cavity with removable Matrix of Leadership. Awesome! Here's hoping HA Sam can hold it.

- Sea Spray - kind of talked about him a few posts back. At any rate, he's a keeper. He's also one of only two new-mold, new-character Voyager Autobots in the ROTF/HFTD line, the other being Stratosphere from last summer!

- Night Ops Ratchet - mostly black Ratchet repaint that looks like he could be a good Toxitron toy. Won't get it.

- Payload: Yellow Long Haul repaint seen before. Pass.

HFTD Human Alliance:

- Jazz w/ Lennox: Oh yes. It's about time he got a decent mold (yes, I do own his deluxe mold 4 times over, shut up). His transformation scheme takes some liberties with the chest and arms, but otherwise he appear perfect. And yes, he finally has the real crescent-shield gun, which, by the way, transforms into a motorcycle for Lennox. Too friggin' awesome.

HFTD Leaders:

- Starscream: Duh. A no-brainer.

- Optimus Prime: don't know if he has a new name/modifer. I mean, I knew Hasbro was going to release some kind of sort-of-changed Leader Optimus repaint, but I was really hoping for them to bring the Buster Prime remold over. And they sort-of have done that - this remold has a mask-less face (dont' know if it's the same as the Buster version, but it's close enough), and also articulated hooks instead of swords, and he's covered in battle damaged paint. Basically, it's ROTF Forest Battle Prime. I'll probably get it. That way, I can leave the normal version combined with Jetfire.

HFTD Activators - Bumblebee, Prime and Megatron - I knew the activators design model would not work well with the movie aesthetic. What a sad race of cybertronians.

HFTD Battle Ops Bumblebee - if it was a Leader class toy, I would've gotten it. For now, it's still too big and expensive (like Ultimate BB was), and the new Battle Blade BB is sating my desire for a BB with transformable arm cannon.

Next up are the Transformers: Power Core Combiners (PCCs). This is a pretty interesting and somewhat innovative line. The core (heh) of the line are a series of scout-sized robots that each have robot, vehicle, and combiner torso (complete with second head) modes. Some of these guys only come with a energon-clear minicon, which in itself has 4 modes - robot, weapon for the larger robot, weapon for the vehicle, and armor for the larger robot (this last mode is the one that I have yet to see any pics of). Other Power Core guys come not with a minicon, but with four Legends-sized vehicle drones, each of which automorphs into an arm or leg, depending on the vehicle. However, any of the scout-sized guys can use any of the limbs or minicons, and the minicons can additionally attach to the limbs. In other words, there's a lot of room for customizaiton here. Overall, the 2-pack sets seem a bit stronger than the 5-packs, and Bombshock (so far) seems to be the best of the 5-packs.

PCC Scout/Minicon sets:

- Huffer with Caliburst: seen in an earlier blog posting, this guy is a pretty clear update to G1 Huffer, at least in visuals. Not much new to report about him.

- Smolder with Chopster: A Decepticon firetruck with a Minicon axe. Doesn't get much more unconventional than this! Not news, as it was revealed online a few weeks ago, but still neat.

- Searchlight with Backwind: Great, great update. The original G1 Searchlight was a white Throttlebot car with a ridiculous six headlights. Now, he's a Chinook-style helicopter whose (unfortunately-named) Minicon serves as a search light/rescue hook/minigun emplacement in vehicle mode. The colors and minicon gimmick indicate this is, in face, intended to at least be an homage to the G1 original. Oh, and he has an awesome bot mode, with each hand armed with his rotors. I love the whole deal.

- Icepick with Chainclaw: A monstrous snowmobile (akin to the Armada Minicon Iceberg), but one with a Minicon on top that serves as a MLRS! Very cool, with an awesome Polar boy-style head sculpt (icesicle hair, for the uninitiated). Very similar colors to the aforementioned Jetblade.

- Leadfoot with Pinpoint: Orange & white Indy-style race car whose Minicon becomes a twin-barreled cannon. Homage to his G1 namesake. Pretty cool; car mode is a bit on the futuristic side.

- Sledge with Throttler: Sledge is some kind of construction machine; Throttler might turn into a drill bit (he's pretty clear purple!). Sledge's bot mode has legs and arms that are somewhat reminiscent of Energon Scorponok.

PCC 5 packs:

- Skyburst with Aerialbots: Skyburst is some kind of made-up stealth fighter/bomber whose alt mode and bot mode are pretty reminiscent of Energon Storm Jet. His drones include a white E-2/A-10 hybrid (arm), a yellow Coast Guard-ish generic rescue copter (arm), a blue Hind-ish gunship (leg) and a made-up delta-winged fighter whose colors bring G1 Skydive to mind (leg). Combined mode (name?) is pretty monstrous - especially the insectoid, clawed helicopter hand. I'll probably get it.

- Bombshock with Combaticons: Bombshock is an Onslaught clone, although he derives his name and green main color from a G1 Micromaster (who I for one am glad to see get resurrected/homaged). His drones include a tankish twin missile carrier (arm), an Energon Kickback-ish twin-barreled tank (arm), a halftrack APC (leg), and an armored HWMVEE/Jeep thing (leg). Combined mode (apparently just called "Bombshock Power-Up Mode") looks pretty awesome.

- Double Clutch with Rallybots: Double Clutch is a light blue sports car (no bot images yet). His limbs include 4 other sports cars - black, red, blue/white, and orange.

- Mudslinger with Destructicons: Mudslinger is a monster truck. His limbs are a rather Mad Max collection of modified cars and trucks.

The last main toyline is Transformers: Generations. This is a great name, and the toyline itself is the 4th line in a great tradition of "catch-all"/G1-focused lines, beginning with Universe (2003), going to Classics, and more recently the 2nd Universe line that ended last year. So far, this is a pretty small line, but (for now) consists of proportionally many more new molds than repaints, which is a great thing. Some of the toys are specifically designed to accompany the upcomign War for Cybertron (WFC) video game, featuring only Cybertronian alt-modes. Also, all the toys so far in this line are deluxes.

- WFC Optimus Prime: What can I say? It's G1 Optimus, in a Cybertronian form, and the toy is actually playable, unlike the Titanium War Within toy. Apparently doesn't have his energon axe, though.

-WFC Bumblebee: Great cybertronian car mode, has an actual (futuristic) pistol, and also "stinger" blade on his forearms. And maybe some really nice shiny paint.

- WFC Megatron: Cool fusion of Animated Voyager Megatron's alt mode, Classics Voyager Megatron's bot mode, and some Movie-esque shattered metal aesthetic. Alt mode is a hover-tank.

- Drift: the first IDW-original character get his own toy! I'm so happy that this exists - it's going to make so many who hate the character have fits. Car mode is kind of boring, but the bot mode is great (unique transformation for a sports car TF), and he has 3 swords!

- Thrust: An American release/repaint of the Japanese Henkei Thrust! This is actually still based on Classics Ramjet, but I'll certainly take it. Both the Japanese and Botcon versions are stupidly expensive. Plus, this opens the door of possibility that Dirge and Thundercracker will be released.

- Darkmount: Really Strxus from the G1 comics, this guy turns into a tank and also has a pretty good-looking cannon-emplacement mode. Has his characteristic "icepick" weapon. This greases a lot of fanboys' gear, but I'd buy it for the mold design alone (I have no love for the Marvel G1 comics, let alone their lazily-designed exclusive characters).

Expensive Exclusives:

- Masterpiece Grimlock: This thing is finally getting a US release, as a Toys R Us exclusive. It has the deco of the first Japanese release, but includes the crown accessory of the repaint. Christmas present?

-Commemorative Series Blaster with Eject, Steeljaw, and Ramhorn. San Diego Comic Con exclusive, meaning I'll have to get it off of HTS.com. I hope it's not too expensive, but the Soundwave + 4 tapes from last year was 50 dollars, and Blaster is much bigger than Soundwave. Still, I'll try to get it.

Whew. Comments on over 40 Transformers toys, and that's not even all that was shown!

Just when I thought I was out...

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Toyfair!

Since I'm about to begin preparing Valentine's dinner for my wife, I'll just say a few things:

1. Wow,

and

2. I'm very glad I decided to renew my club membership. Granted, their site only has pics for about half the things being shown (and I really want to see some of those other transformers), but I'd be dying inside if all I could have at the moment were little text descriptions.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Snow Day!


So, after going to bed last night, all prepared to go to work the next day, we get woken up by a 10:15 phone call saying that there's no school today, due to the possibility of inclement weather. Awesome. It was really nice to be able to turn off my alarm clock at that point and know I could sleep as long as my child would let me (read: only about 30 extra minutes).

Of course, there's no snow (yet), but that doesn't bother me. Between this snow day and the recent days off for the doctor visits, I've actually managed to only work 4 days a week for the past 3 weeks, which is kinda cool.

Unfortunately, there probably won't be any new additions to the Invasion this weekend, as even though I've told my wife that I'd like Animated Arcee/Animated Cybertronian Ratchet/ROTF Legends Devastator for Valentine's day, she probably wouldn't be able to find them. Thus far, the Animated exclusives have had zero reported sightings in the state, and there's only been one for Legendstator.

But who knows.

Oh, and I might put up some more pictures later. I feel like making an ROTF airplane-mold photoshoot.

Edit: Also, I forgot to mention that the NYC Toy Fair is this weekend. Can't wait to find out some details on the upcoming TF stuff for this year. I'm sure to post a response to all of it later on.

Edit 2: Sure enough, right as I started taking pics of my ROTF Decepticon air force, God turned the snow on. I got a few pictures of the snowfall, but it's pretty light and hard to see, as you can observe above.

Edit 3: My son woke up, so we went out and played in the winter wonderland.




Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Mail-away offer for metal feline

Well, I'm sending off for my first mail-away Transformer figure today - Recon Ravage. Too bad I was too young during G1 to send of for Reflector or the Omnibots. I do remember somehow finding the Reflector offer form and being excited about it, only for my mom to tell me that it was no longer valid at that point in time.

Recon Ravage will kind of make up for this. I just hope the next one (maybe they'll do another as soon as this fall?) is a more interesting mold in a more interesting deco.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

You are getting very tired...


ROTF Mindwipe just came in the mail about an hour ago. He's huge! Much more bang for the buck than the typical latter-day Voyager. Awesome wing automorph, too.

I also made a separate page for the Collection Roster, so I can continually update it without having to post huge roster posts every few months.

Also, you may have been able to notice in the previous gallery post that my ROTF Battlefield Bumblebee has an asymmetric paint job on his head. Thankfully, my wife was gracious enough to search for one with a correct paint job (she and her friend went shopping today) so I can return the bum version.






Gallery