long-awaited YF-21 with FAST packs is due for a mid-to-late April 2003
release. However, Macrossworld has managed to secure a 'final approval'
sample for review a few weeks before the actual release date.
toy comes packed in Yamato's standard black card window box, although
this time the toy is displayed in fighter mode, unlike previous Macross
Plus toys, which were displayed in battroid mode.
YF-21 with FAST packs features a new sticker sheet different to the one
which came with the original YF-21. Nothing very exciting though. Unfortunately,
the stickers for the cockpit edge, featuring Guld and Isamu's names are
still spelt incorrectly.....Grrrrr!
point that makes me very happy is that the UN Spacy 'Kite' emblems on
the wing and nose are now Tampo printed on instead of using stickers like on
the original toy.
YF-21 with FAST Pack, features an all new paint scheme consisting primarily
of an overall purplish-blue finish with pale blue trim. I'm not sure the
reason why this new color scheme was adopted, but perhaps Yamato and/or
Big West were worried that if they released the toy in an identical color
scheme to the original YF-21 it would not sell well(?). Anyway, the paint
job on the YF-21 with FAST packs is expertly applied, but then again,
the YF-21 did always have the best paint job of any Yamato Macross toy
in my opinion.
negative point I did notice about the YF-21's paint job is that after
5-6 transformations, paint started to wear off on the die-cast part where
the engine intakes attach and slide.
YF-21 with FAST Packs features the same die-cast content of the original
version, although some of the ABS plastic parts have now been changed
to PVC to increase durability.
YF-21 with FAST Packs comes with the following accessories: -
x gunpods with collapsible shoulder stocks and folding pistol grips.
These can be stored either in the ventral FAST packs or held in the
optional hands. I should also point out that the sculpt of the central
section and pistol grip of the gunpod is not that accurate to the
x detachable ventral FAST Packs, which plug onto leg-bay covers and
are capable of storing the gunpods.
x detachable plug-in rear landing gear for use with the ventral FAST
x Guld Goa Bowman Pilot Figure (very small and lacking in detail).
x detachable optional hands with extended trigger fingers for holding
the gun pods.
x detachable FAST pack fuel tanks, mountable on the tail fins.
FAST packs are molded in a grey color plastic with black panel lines.
The FAST packs attach to the YF-21 by means of relatively thick pins,
which plug into corresponding holes on the YF-21. Removing and attaching
the FAST packs is easy and the FAST packs stay securely attached to the
toy once installed.
two gunpods can be stored in the ventral FAST packs, located on the leg
bay cover panels. The gunpods click securely in place for a nice snug
fit, but are easily removable when needed. Unfortunately, to remove the
gunpods from the FAST Packs, it is necessary to first remove the FAST
packs from the leg bay doors and then remove the gunpod from the rear.
the ventral FAST packs cover the YF-21's rear landing gear (meaning the
rear landing gear cannot be used with the FAST packs in place), Yamato
has supplied a supplemental pair of rear landing gear which plug
into holes in the FAST packs when the YF-21 is in fighter mode with the
FAST packs attached. Unfortunately, with the supplemental landing gear
installed, the YF-21 assumes a somewhat drag-racer-ish look as the extra
height of the FAST packs means the rear of the fighter sits higher than
note of warning about the supplemental landing gear. Although they are
fairly sturdy, I did manage to break one of mine, but it was my fault.
I had the toy parked in fighter mode on my coffee table and was pushing
down on it from above quite hard to try to get the head cowling to lock
in place, when 'SNAP' one of the rear landing gear broke in two at the
mid-strut point. Luckily I was able to repair the damage with some super
is pretty much the same as the original YF-21 apart from the way the legs
fold in fighter mode. If you own that toy, you should have no problems transforming
the new version. Note, after several transformations, I did encounter
some problems getting the toy into fighter mode. See details below in
the 'Problems' section of this review.
I did have a great deal of trouble getting the new YF-21 to balance
in Gerwalk mode. Maybe, I'm just out of practice with the YF-21
as I haven't played with my original YF-21 for a long time, but getting
this new version to stand up Gerwalk mode seemed far more difficult than
I remember. In fact, for the photos in this review, once I got the YF-21
to balance in Gerwalk mode, I just left it in that one pose and just took
photos from different angles, as I didn't want to get even more frustrated
by spending ages trying to get it to stay in another pose.
the obvious addition of FAST packs, gunpods and a pilot figure, Yamato
have made a number of subtle but significant changes to the basic YF-21
design, as follows:-
ankle joint has been changed from a ratchet joint to a ball joint.
This was done to improve stability and poseability by give the foot
a few degrees of side-to-side movement, thus allowing the foot to
remain flat on the ground even when the legs are spread. Luckily the
ankle joints are very tight, so there is no worry about having loose
ankles. In fact, the joints were initially too tight and I was worried
about snapping them the first time I had to rotate the feet when transforming
from fighter mode to battroid mode.
shoulder sliders, which were constructed of ABS plastic on the
original YF-21 and were very prone to stress cracking have now
been changed to PVC. So far after multiple transformations and some
fairy rough handling by me, they have shown no signs of cracking
a perfect world, toys would be without fault. However, the YF-21,
like is not perfect and I have found a number of problems with the sample
reviewed here: -
first couple of times I transformed to fighter mode, everything locked
together without problems. However, from the third transformation
onwards it became increasingly difficult to get the head section to
lock down flat in fighter mode. Every time I tried to lock the head
cowling down flat, it would just pop back up again. I have not
been able to determine the cause of this yet.
hands for holding the gunpods are incredibly difficult to attach to
the wrist pegs. It is a real exercise in frustration getting them
to attach as the angled rear of the wrist is overly large and the
wrist cavity is partially blocked by one of the screws and a locating
pin inside the forearm. The trick to attach the hand is to push the
hand straight back onto the peg, rather than trying to push it on
at an angle. However, even then it is not a sure thing and can take
several frustrating minutes to attach the gunpod hands. In the end,
I found it far easier to disassemble the outer forearm cover, pop
on the hand and then re-attach the outer forearm cover, which is held
on by two screws.
must say, I'm not really overly impressed with this toy. The problems
I've encountered with getting it to balance in Gerwalk mode, the trouble
with the head cowling not staying locked in fighter mode and the difficulty
in attaching the optional hands have left me with a somewhat negative
impression. Also, I prefer the blue color scheme of the original version.
note though that this is a pre-production sample and the final production
toy might be somewhat smoother and less troublesome than my review sample.
usually buy at least 2-4 multiples of each Yamato Macross toys, but I
don't think I will be buying multiples of this one. And this sample is
going to stay permanently in battroid mode (the most trouble free mode).