Saturday, January 11, 2014

Transformers of the Year, 2013! (Late edition)

Ok, this is just C & P'ed from my Allspark post:

Ok, I figure that it's time for this thread. It's the brand's 29th anniversary, though Hasbro started celebrating early! Broken down by line, then size class:

TF Prime: Beast Hunters (technically, some of these were available this time last year, but I figure it's close enough that I could include anything from the line):

-Cyberverse Legion: Soundwave. Looks great in both modes and was sorely missed as a non-BH character that should have had a toy earlier. I admit I gave him Flamewar's gun to replace his chainsaw gun, but otherwise he's basically perfect. Runners-up: All the predacons/Abominus (not sure if he shouldn't have his own category, but whatever) for being a great successor to RotF Legends Devastator, and Airachnid for being better than her deluxe mold.

- Cyberverse Commander: Three-way tie between Optimus, Beast Blade Optimus, and Optimus/Thunderclash from Target. This is a truly fun mold that, while deviating from the design of the show and larger toys, looks great and has an interesting transformation. The original gets points for evoking the aborted "Monster Convoy" Armada design. Beast Blade has the awesome shield/wings and the swirled plastic "camo" otherwise reserved for Deluxe Beast Hunters, and Thunderclash cleverly became available around the time of his fun MTMTE appearance, in addition to inverting the MW repaint order. Runners-up: Hardshell for being another great mold with fun transformation, and Trailcutter for being a great remold.

- Deluxe: Ripclaw. She's the most solid non-cyberverse Predacon toy. Her dragon mode is great; she has a traditional-ish but fun tranformation with a few fourishes, and has a great weapon while being an atypical female. It's a shame she wasn't in the show. Runners-up: Starscream, for being a much for fun/toyish version of the character (though I still love FE Starscream) and Dreadwing for being bananas but still a fun mold.

- Voyager: Sharkticon Megatron. C'mon. Runners-up: Optimus for being one of the most fun Voyager Optimuses in a long time and Magnus for being a great remold of PRiD Optimus and still better than PRiD Magnus.

- Ultimate: Optimus, if only for its over-the-top nature. I'll admit that I didn't buy either of these molds, so not much to say.

Generations: Man, lots of good stuff here.

-Legends 2-packs: Unfortunately, I only have the data disks and none of the more cyberverse-style 2packs. Of the disks, I'd say my favorite individual one is Ratbat. Looks great and works well. Runners-up would be Sundor, which has the best colors for that great mold, and Ramhorn, the only quadruped that really works (and does so well). I do plan on getting the Optimus, Starscream and Megatron sets, of which the Starscream/Waspinator duo seems best.

-Deluxe: Ruination/Xaaron. Yeah, it's a bit cheaty to do a 5-way tie, but this was just a great way to remold Bruticus, It allowed us to finally get an Impactor toy, put some kind of Whirl on shelves while he's a big thing in MTMTE, and allowed the Swindle mold to be used on a character it makes more sense for. The new weapons add a lot of value too. Runners-up: Thundercracker and Orion Pax.

- Voyager: Tie between Springer and Sandstorm. The latter may be a bit more fun in my book, but it's great to see this kind of engineering crossed with such extensive remolding. Runners-up: Even though I don't have him yet, I know Rhinox looks to be pretty great, and I thought Blaster was another fantastic remold that worked well (his only shortcoming was Steeljaw).

- Titan: duh. See below.

- Platinum releases: I'd love to have Platinum Predaking. Magnus was a valiant attempt, but overpriced and not better than the voyager BH Magnus.

Masterpiece: Soundwave. I bought one and then returned it for money reasons, but it seemed great for a much better price than from Japan. However, Acid Storm was very tempting as well.

Construct bots:
- Scout - Ironhide is probably the best all around scout bot. I like the Seekers a lot too, and I don't have anything from wave 3, but Ironhide is very satisfying.

- Elite: Optimus is probably my favorite. I like the clear plastic and the new parts used to differentiate him from the 2-pack version; about the only thing he lacks compared to the 2-pack version is the missile-lanching "ion" cannon. I remedied this by giving him Blitzwing's version of the gun. Runner-up: I don't have him yet, but Shockwave looks great.

- Triple-changer/2-pack: Bltizwing is the only one of these 4 I own, but I like that he manages to feel pretty much like his own bot without having many unique parts; even his head is a remold of Ironhide's. Runners-up: If I had to pick, I'd say BB because of his cool jet mode and Predaking, whose dragon mode is fantastic.


- Boxed sets: I only got Trailbreaker and Windcharger, and of the two I think I'll ultimately side with WIndcharger, because Cohrada is so awesome in its simplicity. My son did just get Ripclaw for Christmas, and it's ok.

- Microchanger wave1: Probably Airachnidis best, with Springer and Blast-Off not far behind.

- Microchanger wave 2: Lugnut is pretty darned awesome, but so are Arcee and Bulkhead. Lots of other great ones in this wave if I'm honest, though.

- Microchanger wave 3: Sharkticon is my favorite, followed by Long Haul and Thrust.

- Microchanger Combiners: I have only bought Devastator for myself, and I honestly was less than impressed with the QC (mostly joint or connector strength), something of a first for Kre-O for me. I've gotten Superion and Pirhanacon for my son. I'd probably get Bruticus, Predaking and Abominus for myself if I were more confident in them.

- Custom Kre-Os: Starscream looks the best, thought Megatron and Optimus are cool too.

TF of the Year: Titan class Metroplex. C'mon - the fact that this thing exists is something of a miracle. I don't have it yet, but there's no way I'm going to miss out on having the biggest TF ever, even if I buy him at full price. His only downside is that Hasbro didn't create a larger range of new G1 Cyberverse/legends to go with him. Well, and the fact that he's functionally an online exclusive (I still have never seen one at retail).

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