Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Me Grimlock no dino, me dragon!


Ok, as you can see above, I've made my second (counting CB Dino-rider Lockdown...) AoE purchase. Most likely my last one, too. This here is, officially, AoE Legion class Grimlock, who ships in a Walmart exclusive case with Stinger, Optimus and BB. However, in a weird move, hasbro decided to not make ANY new CV molds for AoE, despite showing some new ones for the upcoming RiD show. So we're stuck with repaints! Optimus and BB are barely worth talking about, since they are repaints of former movie legion/legends toys that inevitibly are indistinct from prior releases. Optimus is a real shame in that regard, having his evasion mode artwork on the box with the worn-down look that most of his toys have avoided in the AoE lines. Stinger is interesting only because this is the first toy of his to be released; too bad it's only TFP Knock Out with Different Black Stripes. Suck-town. Anyway, Grimlock is nice because the Rippersnapper mold already had some Grimlock-like traits (beast rear legs become arms, legs form from even split beast parts, tiny forelimbs dangle uselessly off robot mode, backpack, etc). The paint job is AoE Grimlock's, but it's a much more toyetic approach, like most of his other releases. His dull orange is meant to emulate copper, and he has some black and silver.

A few other things:

I don't fault them for not giving the ROTF Optimus mold a weapon, because AFAIK it was never remolded for CV to be able to carry any. However, at least Stinger and Grimlock are both 3mm capable molds that originally came with weapons (two in knock out's case), and I'm assuming BB is the DOTM remold of the ROTF mold, so it's disappointing that they aren't equipped with armaments. Grimlock would have looked cool with a sword or maybe the BH hammer weapon. 

This toy doesn't represent AoE Grimlock for me. I wouldn't mind having a representation of that character, but none of his new-mold toys interest me, and my mold-origin OCD means that this Grimlock hails from the TFP universe. I ignored the comics that depicted the FOC Dinobots as part of TFP, so while this guy doesn't have to look like FOC Grimlock, his dragon alt mode, I feel, needs explaining. Similarly to how I was going to use the (pretty much unreleased) TFP BH CV Dimebom as a Predacon-ized Swoop, Grimlock here as pretty much the same deal. Basically, shockwave attempted to transfer the Dinobots' sparks into Abominus-type combiner-capable Predacon bodies. 

(As an aside, it turns out that there are two more AoE legion Dinobot repaints coming - one is the cutthroat mold in AoE Strafe's blue, but looks a bit more like Cryotek, and the other is a rather inexplicable second repaint of Rippersnapper into Grimlock, this item with a slight different color layout, including some red paint apps)

Any way, this is a neat little repaint and will go well with a CV collection, especially the BH releases. 

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Things change...apparently

It's been a while! My last actual post was back in February, and other than the upcoming objects of discussion, I haven't bought any TFs for myself since February when I picked up Generations FoC Skywarp, Armada Staracream, Centuritron, and legends Optimus/Roller and Megatron/Chopshop.

So any way, I managed to find both Swerve/Flanker and Tailgate/Groundpounder in one day and decided to pick up both sets. They were desirable when first revealed, and I'd kind of set aside a place in my mind for MTMTE-based toys, so these factors combined with my reasoning that I hadn't bought any TFs for myself in half a year (no, I'm not counting the CB Dino-rider Lockdown I got in May...) and they were purchased. 

I'm glad I got them. Unlike many current or upcoming TFs, they don't seem to suffer from cheapness or wonky design choices - they feel just like any "normal" quality TF, and actually feel better (I guess?) than a lot of "normal" Commander-scale toys. They are also interesting in that they are the first commanders I've gotten that are meant to be in the same scale as typical deluxe, voyager, etc TFs; that is, they are supposed to be small guys, kind of like what people wanted classics bumblebee to be when they found out we were getting a deluxe. It actually works pretty well, especially since the only other competition was HFTD Windcharger, a scout toy (amusingly, tailgate is being remolded into a new windcharger). I'm trying to say that I don't mind the difference in size b/t tailgate and windcharger (and as such would did the new windcharger superfluous) and find their smallness compared to deluxe autobot cars perfectly acceptable, despite having a deluxe Generations Swerve from 2 years ago (the only other tailgate I have is the TFP CV repaint of Cliffjumper). 

Anyhow, a larger point to discuss is that my much-baleyhooed stepping away from TF collecting has seemed to, by-and-large, actual start occurring. Again, I've bought a total of SEVEN individual TF releases in 6 months time. That hasn't happened, I'm pretty sure, since I began collecting in February of 2003. Fortunately, pretty much nothing from the Age of Extinction line(s) interests me - ESPECIALLY the normal deluxes/voyagers/leaders - and not too much from Generations is tempting me, either. I mean, I'll of course get the new G1 Arcee deluxe when it arrives, and I might go for one of the two Leader Megatron releases, but there isn't much beyond that. I've pretty much given up on owning Metroplex. 

It's a weird thing. I mean, I'd already made a post last summer about "giving up" TFs for lego, and while a lot of Generations/BH releases last fall/winter sucked me back in for a while, I've now pretty much transitioned to that. The next big step is to truly begin selling off big parts of my collection (I still intend to keep Primes, Starscreams, Megatrons, Magnuses, etc), but that's not easy to do now that I've moved and all of my TFs (save for tailgate, swerve, their partners and CB lockdown) are an hour away in storage at my parents' basement. I guess I'll just have to try bringing one bin home at a time and sell my way through it, but either way it's still going to be a long process, and one I'm now somewhat reluctant to execute since my son is pretty hight interested in the toys. Luckily, he seems to like Legos more, and a lot of those sets that I bought "for myself" are now functionally his anyway, so that helps divert attention from a shrinking TF collection.

As a result of all this, don't expect a whole lot of activity here for the foreseeable future. I'll still want to do some mini-reviews and updates from time to time, but otherwise my time is being diverted elsewhere. Even the lego blog I started this spring hasn't been updated since then, and I've definitely been buying lego, so you see what I mean.