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Glad you like him, valhary. I preferred him over the TE version, and I've no regrets at all- he has great presence, fantastic articulation, a decent truck mode (not as nice as TE's, I'll concede), and some nice extras to reenact various scenes. And compared to MP-44, a much easier price tag to digest.

Just got my copies of Maketoys Skycrow (Skywarp) and Zeta Toys' Jazzy, two toys I've been waiting some time for. Skycrow is just sublime. He has a very animation accurate look that's smooth and lovely, far superior IMHO than the old MP mold. There are some fiddly bits that pop off a little too easily, but they snap back on easily, so not a dealbreaker. The fighter mode looks equally good, capturing the look of the venerable F-15 very well. The joints in the vertical stabs are rather loose on mine, but will maintain their position with some tweaking. The overall toy is pretty sweet, well worth the wait. I'm anticipating the release of their Thrust, as it'll come with the wing fillers for Skycrow, and I've always like the look of Thrust compared to the other two Coneheads. 

I'm probably in the minority for choosing Zeta's Jazz over Maketoys, but I love the way it homages the original toy better than the Maketoys. After transforming it twice now, it's a mixed bag. The upper and lower body transformations are fairly straightforward once you know how to position the bits making up his waist. the problem I have with mine is alignment of the rear and front halves of the car; the rear half sits just a little too low and just a little too far back to line up properly and connect at both doors and roof. I have to do a lot of squeezing and compressing to get the two to mate up, and I'm left with gaps between the forward edge of the doors and the front fenders when I get the doors and roof flush. I'm not sure what's causing it; I followed the instructions, which aren't the clearest I've seen, and watched a vid (Skullface Coolsville), and I'm still having the same result as the first transformation. It feels like something somewhere isn't compressed enough to allow everything to come together naturally. It's a bit disheartening because it has a beautiful car mode- mine just has gaps. Anyway, the bot mode is what really made me want the figure, and overall, it's a pretty G1 toy-faithful entry, with the toy sticker details from both the chrome torso section and the knees picked out in molded detail and corresponding colored paint. I love it. In every way that matters, he looks like Jazz. Articulation is decent- pretty standard, but no ab crunch. He does have waist swivel, though, which is good enough for me. The hands are odd- the index and middle fingers are attached together as well as the ring and pinkies. The finger clusters are typical typewriter posed and swivel at a base pin joint. The thumb is on a ball peg. The hand also has a bit of molding that forms a semicircle to help hold the gun. It looks a little odd if the fingers are open, but it does allow the gun to be held firmly. Personally, I'd prefer the standard tab-on-gun-handle, slot-in-palm method that Takara and most other third parties use, but I can overlook it. It's functional, but not pretty. I'd like it, but the transformation issues just kinda suck some of the joy out of it, especially since I've been waiting for it to be restocked for about eight months. Oh, one other criticism I've seen online, and that is true for my copy as well, is the lack of blue paint on his waist skirts that is shown in Zeta's promo shots, but missing on the actual toy. It's a small thing, but if you're going to advertise it, it should be on the actual product. It's an odd omission given how otherwise well painted the figure is. And beautifully tampoed, for that matter. I'll give it a soft recommend to folks who want their MP Jazz to favor the G1 toy. However, the transformation is a little complex, and mine has alignment issues that may or may not be endemic to the entire batch of reissues. Mine will remain in bot mode for the majority of its display time, as he fills that Jazz spot nigh perfectly for my tastes. Of course, YMMV, but that's the great thing about options. Cheers!

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TE-01 is just so perfect to me. I recently got some upgrade bits from TFW2005 member Jream, and they really add to the figure. Little blue vinyl circles, perfectly color matched, to cover the metal slider on the sides of the legs, waterslides for the chest windows in light and dark blue, and cell shaded/animation style window waterslides, plus a nice white outline waterslide Autobot logo for the shoulder. There's the new head on the way, with more prototype shots on TFW2005, and it looks phenomenal, plus it looks like it transforms, unlike earlier reports where everyone thought it would be static and would have to be swapped for the original transformable head.

MS-01 was never for me, but I love that two different third party companies came along and gave the folks what they like, options. I know some people were never going to bite on MP-44, and TE-01 just looked like a cheaper alternative to MP-44, more toon styled then anything. So it's good to see another company step up and deliver an update to MP-10 that wasn't striving for complete toon accuracy.

At some point the last mod I will need to do is to paint the grey, square section on the crotch white to match the rest of the hip skirt section, I really have no idea why TE left that grey and the rest white, it's quite distracting IMO. Also, depending on the new head, I gotta paint this stock head's face grey, the head sculpt looks good to me, I just don't really like the face in white. No idea on how to paint this guy up though or what to use, so we'll see how that goes...

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Do the current preorders for the re-release of the TE Prime include the new head or is that just speculation?


It's one of those things where TE supposedly said they're doing another head that would be included with the re-release, but no one's heard anything about it since.

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Well, this is an older figure, but it got a recent reissue.  This is BadCube's Grump, aka MP Gears.


Well, that's definitely Gears.  I think BadCube put a lot of effort into capturing a lot of Gears' details, from the weird head, the vent necktie, the red triangle, the silver trapezoids, the fins on his shoulders, and the bump outs on his shins.  The tires are well-hidden.  My gripes are fairly few.  For one, I wish they'd painted the red parts of the hinge at his waist silver to match the cartoon.  Two, he's got the usual BadCube "stuff kibble on the feet" thing that leave his feet kind of flat, with messy blue and silver bits.  I think the worst thing he's got going on, though, are weirdly short arms (or a weirdly long torso).  I was never a huge fan of Gears, though; I think the only thing that saved him from being my least-favorite season 1 minibot is because he hung out with Spider-Man in the old Marvel comics.  I guess my point is that while there's probably room for improvement Grump looks good enough for me.

He's a little shorter and less stocky than BadCube's earlier MP Brawn.  The plastic on Grump feels better, though, and he's actually a little heavier due to some diecast.


Grump comes with just three accessories.  You've got his gun, which has really nice metallic blue paint.  The other accessories are from the episode "Changing Gears".  The video cassette-looking thing is Gears' personality circuit, which Megatron stole to use in his solar needle and without which Gears became happy, helpful, and friendly.  The other is the tool he used to help Megatron fix the solar needle.


Speaking of "Changing Gears," the default face out of the box is a happy, smiling face, and there's no alternate face in the box.  That episode might be the quintessential Gears episode, but if you're like me you still want a grumpier face more representative of the rest of his appearances.  BadCube's got you covered.  Just lift up his face, spin it 180 degrees, and fold it back down.  Instant grumpy face.  I have to admit, while it seems like a minor bummer not to have Gears' toy face I appreciate the face-swapping gimmick doesn't require me to pick which face I want to display him with while stuffing the rest in a box in my closet.


Grump's big ol' blockhead can swivel, but due to its shape it can't tilt at all.  His shoulders are on hinged ball joints.  The ball joint provides rotation and some lateral movement.  With the the hinge you can get the lateral movement to 90 degrees, but you can also give him a shoulder slump in more neutral poses that I appreciate for the character.  He has bicep swivels, and a single elbow hinge that gets a little more than 90 degrees.  Unfortunately he's got no wrist swivels or any kind of finger articulation, which seems a little limited for a supposed MP-alike (although I guess he's not worse than MP-21 Bee in that regard).  His waist can swivel.  His hips are universal joints that get a little under 90 degrees forward, 90 degrees backward, and over 90 degrees laterally.  His thighs swivel around the hip joints.  His knees are technically double-jointed for transformation, but only the upper hinge is really useful in robot mode and it'll get you just under 90 degrees.  His ankles are ball joints, so he can get a little up and down tilt, ankle pivots in both direction, plus an ankle swivel.

Much like MP Bee, the handle of Grump's gun is rectangular, and slides down into the rectangular hole his fist is molded into.  The torch can be attached by folding his hand into his arm and then tabbing the torch into a notch between the top of his forearm and the hinge that the hand folds in on.  As for the circuit, you can flip up a panel on Grump's torso and you'll see a slot that it fits into.  You might want to have some sturdy tweezers or a small pair of pliers handy, though.  It fits in snuggly enough that it won't fall back out on it's own, even if you shake him, and deeply enough that you can close is torso back up.  That means that there's very little to get a grip on to pull it back out.


Grump's transformation is kind of similar to Brawny's.  Both store the arms in the passenger cabin.  Both pull the front wheels and fenders from out of their torso, although Grump's are more in the backpack.  Both fold the rear tires from out of their calves.  Both fold up the legs and feet to make the rear and much of the sides of the vehicle, Brawny just uses some extra flaps to help cover his rear.  Somehow he's a lot smaller, though. 

Something to note, I kind of remember some reviewers complaining about the transformation back when he first came out (or maybe it was just one certain masked reviewer...).  I gotta be honest, I thought it was pretty easy.  A real walk in the park compared to pretty much everything Fans Toys has done since Phoenix or so.  Now, I've never handled Wardog, but by now I've got BadCube's Gears, Brawn, Huffer, Sunstreaker, and all three of their Insecticons, and I'm really questioning why BadCube got a such a bad reputation for difficult transformations and why people are so willing to give Fans Toys a pass when theirs are much worse.


Moving on... I'm not sure if G1 Gears alt mode was based on a real truck.  I'll say that Grump has the basic details of the cartoon- blue truck with a red bed cover and bumper.  He's still got the gray patch on the hood, and he's still rocking a sunroof.  But the finer details aren't quite a match for the cartoon.  The headlights don't flare out on the sides so much.  He doesn't really have that second set of lights on the hood, either.  He's just got two little bumps.  He's got A pillars and running board steps.  The grill is more detailed, and he's got some molded shocks visible on the rear wheels.  It's sort of like BadCube was trying to make a more realistic truck without a specific truck in mind.

Oh, minor point, but I wish the translucent plastic for the windows had some tint.  Not really interested in seeing is robot shoulders through the windshield.  Speaking of windows, there's none on the bed cover, just some visible hinges.  But the guy's gotta transform somehow, I guess.  It's not like I'm going to spend a ton of time looking back there anyway.


The tires are plastic, and they don't roll particularly well.  I can't tell if it's because things aren't lining up just right, or if there's not enough clearance between the tires and the wheel wells, or if the tolerances on the axles are too tight.  Probably a combination of all three.  You can store the gun on the back of the truck by fitting two pegs into two holes on the side of the gun.  I do appreciate alt mode weapon storage.  If you put the circuit in his chest you can leave it in for truck mode; even though it's exposed it's not going to fall out.  Nowhere to stow the torch, but I'm fine tossing it back in the box.

Grump, like most figures, isn't perfect.  Aside from the silver there's not much paint on him.  He doesn't come with a ton of accessories.  His feet are a little messy, and his proportions are a little wonky.  He doesn't have any wrist articulation.  But, BadCube put a lot of attention into the sculpt.  The accessories he does have are fine.  I really like that you can swap faces without actually swapping parts.  He's reasonably well-articulated aside from the wrists, and the joint tolerances feel good.  He's the right size for a minibot, and the transformation isn't bad.  For a character that's mostly just checking off a box for me I think BadCube honestly did a pretty good job, enough that I'm somewhat curious to check out their Swerve remold despite no real recollection of him in the cartoon (I guess Trypticon stepped on him).  I'm going to give Grump a recommend.

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Something to note, I kind of remember some reviewers complaining about the transformation back when he first came out (or maybe it was just one certain masked reviewer...).  I gotta be honest, I thought it was pretty easy.  A real walk in the park compared to pretty much everything Fans Toys has done since Phoenix or so.  Now, I've never handled Wardog, but by now I've got BadCube's Gears, Brawn, Huffer, Sunstreaker, and all three of their Insecticons, and I'm really questioning why BadCube got a such a bad reputation for difficult transformations and why people are so willing to give Fans Toys a pass when theirs are much worse. 

Excellent review as always, and I LOVE my BadCube Grump, he's a brilliant MP minibot, but this stuck out to me, as I had the same feeling. The main thing reviewers and some fans didn't like was tabbing the small tabs that fold out from the chest section into the front two wheels. It's not impossible, and honestly I never found it difficult either, it's not nearly as bad as parts of Wardog or as mentioned, some of the Fans Toys stuff that was coming out at the time as well.

I kind of get it, he's a minibot, he should be simple, but that was the only truly tricky part of the transformation, and once again, I thought it was a breeze. Even if it was a bit tricky to tab in and line up, it could be avoided altogether, on mine after some time I simply removed the screws and removed the little tabs behind the chest, they are absolutely NOT necessary for transformation, that whole assembly frictions into place between the front wheels just fine, the tabs really aren't needed.

I honestly really enjoyed all of the MP minibots from BadCube, I thought they did a damn fine job nailing the bot modes, and I feel the alt modes looked as good as they could considering BadCube tried, except for Gears, to go for "realistic" alt modes, for characters that pretty much always had chibi style alt modes in the cartoon. It bugged me a bit for Gears, being more chibi then the rest, but he always had the most difficult to define alt mode, I've seen many examples of what he could be, and it seemed he wasn't based on any one vehicle like everybody else, he was a little hybrid chibi vehicle, and BadCube did the best they could.

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You know, for as much as Silverbolt always winds up being a plane with a giant box of kibble underneath, why hasn't anyone tried using the XB-70 Valkyrie as the alt mode?  It's literally a big long slender fuselage and tails slapped on top of a giant delta wing, with a huge blocky intake and engine box underneath.  You wouldn't be fitting the entirety of the body in a properly scaled underside, but it'd be better than using a design that's supposed to have nothing down there.

I've posted pics and explanations advocating that exact thing for YEARS on the TF forums...  (and then you have people proposing T-38's as "modern updated alt-modes")  

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I've posted pics and explanations advocating that exact thing for YEARS on the TF forums...  (and then you have people proposing T-38's as "modern updated alt-modes")  



Modern update for what? They've been around forever.  Contemporary of the F-4 and nearly a decade before the other four, if I'm not mistaken.

I feel like you typed T-38, but meant to type something like Tu-160 or Tu-360.

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I think he was saying that the Transformers fans are suggesting the T38 as a "more modern" plane, indicating how little they actually know about planes.

Oh.  Yeah, those people.  The ones who get me grinding my teeth when they review something like Zeta's Fireflight and they try to straighten out the wing tips, or any jet with two straight vertical stabilizers and they angle them like an F-18's because it "looks cool."

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I think a T-38 is doable, just the Bot would need to be very thin and spindly. I personally don’t have a problem with that but bots are often made very robustly or full. Just embrace the airframe and work from there. Now an accurate A-10 is impossible. The airframe is far to thin and narrow.


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Oh.  Yeah, those people.  The ones who get me grinding my teeth when they review something like Zeta's Fireflight and they try to straighten out the wing tips, or any jet with two straight vertical stabilizers and they angle them like an F-18's because it "looks cool."

Right there with you. That and calling stabilizers 'fins' or 'wings'. In an age where info is literally at your fingertips, why don't folks who review these things do a little research so they can at least get the proper nomenclature down? Likewise the specifics of the particular airframe so they can speak about it somewhat intelligently. There's info about pretty much every production, and many non-production, aircraft on the net- a little reading goes a long way to improving a presentation.

T-38s, and F-5s by extension, are small planes, kinda like a VW Beetle next to a 70's station wagon. However, if being a Macross fan has taught me anything, there's a way to squeeze a robot out of just about any airframe- a little engineering and imagination can go a long way.  Anyway, the argument for using the T-38 as a replacement airframe for Silverbolt is just laughable- I can only shake my head at the incredulity. 

Concerning the A-10, I thought the original Jizai Toys design was pretty sweet. It spawned any number of clone toys by other 3P companies. DX9's Richtofen is a pretty nice facsimile of the Warthog, albeit a bit thick in the middle. However, I think it favors the chibi proportions of the original toy, and they pretty much nailed bot mode, so my complaints are minimal. The Fairchild Robo (Gobots Bad Boy) toy from the 80's probably has the most accurate A-10 mold in a transforming toy.  I'm happy with my Combiner Wars Powerglide, despite its numerous inaccuracies, as it's arguably the best official toy we've ever received.  I just saw an A-10 up close last weekend while visiting the Evergreen Aviation and Space Museum, home to the Spruce Goose, so it's still fresh in my head. Some think it's ugly; I wholeheartedly disagree.

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@mikeszekely did you ever review XTB Boost?  I have that one preordered at BBTS.

Not yet.  I have the "comitoon" version preorderd at TFSource.  I've heard he's kind of so-so, but I'm looking forward to him since he'll complete my Season 1 minibots.  Hopefully shouldn't be too much longer, since some other US retailers like ToyDojo and TheChosenPrime got theirs.

But instead of a minibot, how about a really big one instead?  Because while I'm still waiting on Boost, I did happen to pick up Fans Hobby's Double Evil, their MP Overlord.  And because of how he's packaged, we're going to do things a little differently and start with alt modes instead of bot mode.


The first box is for the jet.  In addition to the jet, it has four black missiles with silver tips, and double-barrelled gun, an articulated claw, and the black & gold "Power Pilot."  It also comes with it's own set of instructions and a trading card.


The second box is the tank.  It also has a rifle, two antennae, three small rockets, two ramp parts, and the white and silver Power Pilot.  Curiously, it comes with it's own set of instructions, although instead of a second trading card it comes with a sheet of stickers.  Most of the stickers are for Double Evil, but a few are actually intended for Power Baser (Fans Hobby's Powermaster Optimus Prime).

I'll mention at this point that I'm not really sure why FH decided to box this stuff separately.  As far as I know, they're not sold separately.  Both boxes are packed into a larger plain white box, so they're not split up in any way that would make packing and shipping them any easier.  I'm not an expert, but I think FH could have put everything in one box.


Anyway, about those Power Pilots.  If you're a Masterforce fan you've probably noticed that Fans Hobby mixed them up at some point.  The black & gold one is Giga, and he drove the tank.  Mega is the white & silver one, and she flew the jet.  As far as the figures themselves go, if you've handled Power Baser's you kind of know what to expect already.  Their heads are on swivels.  Their shoulders are ball joints with the ball in the torso, so they can rotate and extend laterally a bit.  Note that the shoulder rotation is a little limited by their backpacks, especially Mega's since those fins on the tops of her shoulders are just the right size to keep them from clearing her backpack.  Elbows can bend a little.  No bicep, wrist, or waist swivels.  Their hips are ball joints with the balls in the pelvis, which gives them swivels and a little bit of lateral movement.  Hinges at the base of the ball pegs get you 90 degrees forward and adequate backward motion in the hips.  The knees are hinged, no foot articulation, and due to the lack of heels and the weight of their backpacks you have to bend the hips back a little and bend the knees the wrong way a little to try to get the feet under their center of gravity, otherwise they'll fall over.

For those that are curious neither Giga nor Mega will fit on Power Baser.  I didn't try Ginrai on Double Evil, though.


Now the jet itself, known as the Mega Jet in Masterforce, is a big honkin' jet.  It's slightly longer than Fans Toys' Phoenix, although Phoenix has a greater wingspan and is heavier due to having more diecast parts.  The detachable portion alone is larger than Titans Return Leader-Class Overlord's entire jet.

Personally, I think the jet mode looks great, but something Fans Hobby gets some flak for is selling figures that are in the MP scale but are a little too stylized and not G1-accurate enough.  To me, Overlord wasn't a part of G1 in the US, I didn't watch Masterforce until I was already an adult, and when I did watch it I thought it was pretty bad.  I'm not super into Overlord, so I'm not really bothered by Double Evil not being an exact match for the G1 toy or the Masterforce animation model.  I would be remiss, though, if I didn't point out those deviations, and in jet mode the purple inlet cones have a different shape, the canards are a different shape, the nose is longer, the fuselage starts to widen at the cockpit instead of behind it, the wings are bigger (although I think that was true in the cartoon, too), the fuselage is proportionally not as wide, the engine nacelles are proportionally smaller, and instead of inwardly-angled purple stabs on the nacelles the stabs are outwardly-angled and set on the tail between the nacelles.  Double Evil's jet also has visible exhaust nozzles, extra silver paint, and is missing the orange window on the underside.  I think when you look at it the colors and the general details are there, so you recognize it as the Mega Jet, but the silhouette is actually very different.


All of the accessories that come with the jet can be stored on the jet.  The double-barreled gun plugs into the spine.  The barrels can extend, and the gun can rotate.  The canopy can open to allow the Power Pilot to sit inside, and the steering yoke even moves up and down.  The missiles attach to the undersides of the wings by pushing the missiles' canards and fins into grooves under the wing.  The claw folds up and sticks to the inside of the engine nacelle, in the space between the robot torso and left arm.  There's also landing gear that can fold out from under the nose and from the insides of the robot arms.  The wheels aren't rubber, but they do roll.

Fans Hobby did a good job blending the spine of the plane into the engine nacelles, they shaped the thigh connectors to look like additional exhaust nozzles, and they engineered a flap that plugs into the robot hips.  It all helps to give the jet a very finished look, so it's not immediately apparent that it's a transformer unless you look at it from directly underneath.


The Giga Tank is nearly as impressive as the Mega Jet when it comes to size, as it's still significantly bigger than Titans Return Overlord or even Combiner Wars Leader-Class Megatron... and it's just made from legs!  I think the Giga Tank also deviates less from the source.  It's a little longer and it doesn't have two big square holes on the front, but I think that just makes it look like a more cohesive tank.  Likewise, he's lacking the weird gaps on the back of the turret that the G1 toy had (and the Masterforce animators left on the animation model).  The concave canopy section isn't toy accurate, but like the Mega Jet's wings I do think it's cartoon accurate.  The lights at the front of the turret (actually, I think that's something like a periscope on a real tank) and the silver rails around the sides and back of the turret are accurate.  I think the biggest deviations (aside from all the tampos) are the chaff launcher on the side of the turret and the lack of a Powermaster engine slot (which reminds me, the Mega Jet doesn't have one either, but it's less noticeable because the jet is black and I'd guess the port would have been right around where you plug the gun in, anyway).


Like the Mega Jet, the Giga Tank is designed to store all of the accessories that it comes with.  For starters, the rifle collapses and tucks in under the back of the tank.  The two ramp sections connect together and then tab onto the bottom of the tank.  Both the ramps and the gun help to make the back and bottom of the tank look even more cohesive.  The canopy opens for a Power Pilot to sit it, and again there's a steering column that lifts up and down.  Next to the canopy, in place of a Powermaster engine port, there's a panel that flips up and reveals a rocket launcher.  The three small white rockets fit into the barrels.  On the front of the tank turret are a pair of flaps that open up to reveal spaces to store the purple antennae.  For the record, those rockets and the antennae store in the same spots in robot mode, in case I forget to mention it.


As good as the tank looks Fans Hobby went the extra mile by including working rubber treads.  The barrel can raise and lower, and while the turret can't spin a full 360 degrees it can turn 60 degrees to the left or right.  The fact that it can turn at all is pretty impressive when you remember that the entire tank splits into two halves.


And splitting the tank in half is something you'll need to do, if you want to turn Double Evil into a robot.  For the most part, the transformation is pretty straightforward and fairly enjoyable.  The only parts I'm not very fond of are the aforementioned splitting of the tank and pulling the front of the jet off.  The connections are very strong, and it requires a scary amount of force to pull them apart.  Otherwise everything pretty much moves the way you'd expect, although there are some flaps that are easy to miss under the turret halves that help the turret look more flush with the legs and lock them in place so they don't rotate and some other flaps you pull down inside his shoulder armor so you don't see a gap when you view him from the side.  Those flaps can be easy to miss.

Aesthetically it's again not entirely G1/Masterforce.  His torso has a taper in the midriff that I think looks more dynamic, and his thighs have a Dreamwave sort of bulge to them.  The broad shoulder armor, the ridges on his abdomen, his head (and most especially his face) are more IDW than Masterforce.  Again, these are things that might bug you if you want a more G1-accurate Overlord, but again I really dig this sculpt.  I just has so much life to it.


And Double Evil is a very big fellow.  He's half a head taller than a big bot like Phoenix, and he's carrying more bulk.  He positively dwarfs his rival, Power Baser.  Fans Hobby can't release their Godbomber soon enough!


Double Evil's head is on a ball joint at the the base, with a hinge where his neck is connected to his torso.  He's got fantastic up/down range, more than enough sideways tilt, the usual swivel, plus he can crane his neck forward.  His shoulders rotate on ratchets.  There's a ratcheted hinge inside the shoulder that can move maybe 60 degrees laterally, and a second ratcheted hinge where the whole thing is attached to the torso.  Combined he can move his shoulder a little over 90 degrees laterally; the purple spikes even have double-hinges to help them move and give his shoulder enough clearance.  His biceps can swivel, and he's got double-jointed, ratcheted elbows that can bend well over 90 degrees (although it takes a little finagling to get his forearm armor to clear his biceps.  His wrists can swivel, and he's got articulated fingers.  The thumb is on a ball joint at the base with one additional pinned knuckle hinge.  Each finger is pinned at the base with two additional pinned knuckles.  He doesn't have an ab crunch, but he can bend a little forward or backward at the sternum.  His waist can swivel.  His hips can go forward just over 90 degrees and backward just under 90 degrees on ratchet.  Unfortunately, he can only move them about 45 degrees laterally, still on ratchets.  So no high kicks, but honestly I think it's enough for a character this big.  His thighs swivel, and he's got double-jointed, ratcheted knees that give him an extremely deep knee bend.  His feet have a ratcheted up/down tilt with plenty of down and a click or so up, plus his ankles can pivot 45 degrees to either side.

The main thing to address in regards to posing him is his stability.  While the ratchets are strong, there's some wiggle between clicks.  And the way his foot is designed, the connection between the leg and the foot is a swivel, kind of at the base of thin shin, pointing forward into the back of the top of his foot.  He does have heels, but they barely reach as far as the back of his leg.  As many others have pointed out, if you stand him up straight at attention he has a tendency to lean backward or even fall over.  Now, I think it's fair to point this out, as it is an issue, but I think it's been kind of overblown.  Click his hips out just a single click from stock straight, and turn his thigh swivels out just a little bit, and you'll have him in a natural, relaxed stance that's stable.  Putting him into even more dynamic poses, with one leg forward and one leg back, and he becomes even more stable.  In practice, getting him in a position where he'll stand worrying that he's going to fall over isn't difficult.

Once again, all of Double Evil's accessories can be stored (or at least carried) on his person.  His rifle slides into his palm using that Maketoys/Fans Hobby system with the rails at the base of the palm that fit into grooves on the sides of the handle.  I already mentioned the antennae and the little white bombs remaining in their tank-mode spots.  The Power Pilots can continue to chill in their respective cockpits, or you can open the doors on Double Evil's chest to reveal a pair of Powermaster ports.  If you're into the Masterforce thing the smaller black parts of the doors are separate pieces and can be closed while the white parts are open, locking the pilots in place.  Unfortunately, the doors only open as far as you see in the above picture; I'd have liked it if they could have opened 180 degrees.  And just like the G1 toy, pushing them in activates spring-loaded mechanisms that will pop the Chokon Demon Blast open and pop the Chokon Bolt Masher out.  If you want to close the doors with the pilots inside you can.  Mega's door won't sit totally flush, but it's close enough that you're unlikely to notice the difference, and it's just friction that holds the doors closed so you're not missing any tabs.


The smaller ramp piece fits onto the leftover jet piece, covering the gap Double Evil's head would fit into.  Doors on the underside open, and the claw can peg into the inside.  There's also a handle on the underside that folds out and rotates around.  The handle has the same grooves that the gun does, so Double Evil can hold this chunk of jet like a shield.  The ratchets in his arms are strong enough to keep it up.


Of course, if you prefer to keep one of those articulated hands free and want a more traditional look, there's bumps inside those panels we opened, just under where the claw pegs in.  Those bumps slide into grooves on his shoulder armor.  This is the part where I confess, as impressive as the jet mode is I do wish that the removable part would have been a bit smaller. Most of the time Overlord's "shield" is just a little longer than his arm, but Double Evil's reaches below his knees.  As for the rest, the rest of the ramp folds up and tabs into his backpack, and there are ridges that the tail fins on the missiles can slide into.  The double-barreled gun plugs into the same spot as it does in jet mode, which is now on his back and behind his head.


When I reviewed the Titans Return Overlord I said that Overlord's really a Duocon because he splits into a jet and a tank just like Flywheels.  But G1 Overlord was pretty massive; when you compare him to Trypticon, Metroplex, or Scorponok he was in that same ballpark.  Overlord is a citybot, so Double Evil wouldn't be complete without a base mode (one that still has storage for all his accessories. 

Again, we're not totally G1 here.  The front of the jet is still the main tower, although it doesn't turn around so the white part isn't showing.  There is a door that flips open to reveal a double-barreled turret that one of the pilots can man.  The engine nacelles still make additional towers, and they're still topped by the appropriate antennae.  You've still got a main ramp on the front, with two ramps off the sides that connect to the tank halves.  However, the back of the jet doesn't unfold at all (save for the ramps themselves), and the ramps are kind of short, so the halves of the tank aren't spaced out as far.  They don't splay out like the G1 toy, either, so they rather remind me more of the Titans Return toy's base mode. 


His rifle doesn't make a small tower for one tank half, and there's no missile launcher part for the opposite side.  They don't have ramps.  But the double-barreled gun does plug into one side, and the claw on the other like the G1 toy's crane.  And although the rifle can't make a tower, it can still plug into one side.  The instructions suggest that you can put the other pilot in the space behind the double-barreled gun, like he's also manning a turret, but he doesn't lock in place there.  The handle moves so it can be aimed up and down, and both it and the double-barreled gun can swivel.  By that logic, you could also put him on the other side, like he's operating the claw, but honestly I prefer keeping him in his tank cockpit.  The claw, too, can swivel at the base, the claw can open and close, and the arm has two hinges.  The rocket port on the tank turret can still be deployed, and technically, you can still swing out the tank barrel if you want.  The missiles clip onto the same spots they do in jet mode, you just have to reposition them so that they're pointed up.

The tank parts are only connected to the rest of the base where the ramps tab into them, so if you move the base you kind of have to move the tank parts separately and reconnect them.  The main section itself, though, is quite secure, which is a big improvement over the Titans Return toy.  A part of me does wish it were a little closer to the G1 toy, but that would have necessitated another pair of ramps, a little scout car, and the missile tower.  I think the deviations we got from the G1 base are the sacrifices made to ensure that every accessory had a place in every mode, and I prefer that to a more accurate base mode I'll almost never display him in.

At the end of the day Double Evil definitely has a few flaws, but I'm sure that I don't own a figure that I can't find at least a few flaws on.  How much any give flaw, especially something like Double Evil being a little stylized and not entirely G1-accurate, is pretty subjective.  What I can tell you is that I think Double Evil's flaws are minor.  I think there are highly-regarded figures with bigger issues (like Phoenix's waist swivel, Constructor's proportions, etc).  And I think, despite not really caring much about Overlord, and despite having an entire (full) Detolf just for Optimus Primes, that Double Evil is a much better figure than Power Baser.  I'm telling you that I highly recommend this figure.  Actually, I've recommended stuff like Siege figures, so I kind of feel like saying "I recommend this" isn't strong enough.  What I really want to say is that if you can work Double Evil into your budget then you should definitely go to your store of choice right now and buy one if you haven't already.  

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As a non-comics reader, I have no connection to Masterforce; as such, my intro to Overlord and Sky Shadow are purely through Titans Return, and I opted for Sky Shadow as my single mold purchase. I'll be honest, I'm not crazy about two disparate vehicles transforming into bot bits which connect together to form a whole robot. It's also why Flywheels feels lacking to me, but Battletrap if fantastic. But I digress. Skimming Mike's Double Evil review, I have to concede that when done right, even a duocon (I use the term loosely) such as Overlord can be a striking toy, and IMHO, Fan's Hobby did a really nice job, especially with the vehicle modes. I'm impressed that they were able to give the tank a rotating turret, and the jet looks nice (I'm assuming those gear retract).  Bot mode looks good, but it's a shame FH couldn't hide the tank turret in the legs like the Hasbro. Still, they get points for better functionality in tank mode. Anyway, as a nonfan of this sort of thing, I thought I'd chime in a positive opinion, as it looks like a fun figure. Thanks for sharing the review, Mike. Cheers!

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I need it.  :wub:

You definitely do. ;)


Skimming Mike's Double Evil review

Skimming?! (:p j/k)


(I'm assuming those gear retract)

They do.  The rear wheels hide in doors on the insides of his forearms, and the front gear is in the nose (and possibly partly why he doesn't have the orange cockpit underneath).


but it's a shame FH couldn't hide the tank turret in the legs like the Hasbro.

I agree, it works for the Hasbro version.  But the Hasbro version can kind of get away with it because the treads are just molded onto the sides, and the tank is much shorter.  Double Evil's real working treads have to fold up and then slide into that space in his calves.

It's probably worth pointing out that, even though it adds to the chunk on his legs, it's actually G1 accurate to have the tank halves on the sides.



I still wish XTB could have made a Knight Rider version out of it.

I'd totally buy that, and I'm saying that as someone who doesn't play to buy the Tailgate version.  While we're on the subject, I'd have bought MMC's Calidus (IDW Hot Rod) repainted as a Batmobile.


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Well, there was a flash sale coupon on ebay, 15% off if you used the ebay app.  I'm fairly caught up; I have a small backlog of "eh, I'll get around to it someday when there's nothing else I really want" but with the new wave of Siege stuff hitting, a preorder for a Boost reissue that other US retailers already got in, and ShowZ having just requested payment for my preorder on Gigapower's Swoop I really wasn't looking to spend anything.  But I decided to browse my saved sellers anyway.  Big mistake.  One seller had the foot/hip upgrade for Titan-class Metroplex.  I don't do a lot of 3P upgrades for official figures, so I figured I'd check out some videos on Youtube.  Then somehow ended up checking out some videos for Utopia.  I didn't buy him before because I didn't have the money.  I later bought the Takara Metroplex because it was slightly cheaper than Utopia's original price, way cheaper than some of the aftermarket prices I saw since stock has mostly dried up, and because I'd picked up Titan-class Trypticon and figured that even though Trypticon was smaller that he'd still size better with Titan Metroplex.  But, and I know this is subjective, I think Utopia looks so much better than even the Takara Metroplex.  Nice and chunky, like I remember the G1 toy.  And yes, he's smaller, but depending on how you pose Trypticon it actually looks like Utopia scales better with him.

Long story short, I bought a used Utopia.  From a US seller, so hopefully I'll have him late this week or early next.

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Addendum to my Double Evil review.


That's the tank portion of DX9's Gabriel.  Double Evil's tank is almost exactly as long (not counting the portion of DE's barrel that hangs over), although Gabriel is wider and taller.  Both are heavy.  DE's tank (with gun and ramp attached and Giga driving) is about one pound, ten ounces (1.6 pounds) (734 grams).  Gabe is around two pounds, four ounces (or 2.25 pounds) (1.02kg).

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TFCon's going on in LA.  Honestly, I haven't seen much new stuff.  There is this new Star Convoy coming from MMC, though.  Apparently he's called Stellarus Prominon, and he'll be the first figure in an Ocular Max subline called Ocular Max Unlimited.


EDIT: Spoke too soon.  Zeta is doing Raiden for their next combiner.


I've been pretty unhappy with Fans Toys' stuff for the last year or so, but we've been in dire need of a better MP Astrotrain than Chigurh, so I'm going to keep my eyes on Thomas.


And Fans Hobby, who you guys should know I adore, announced that they've altered their plans to make a smaller Armada Optimus toy.  He's now going in the Master Builder line as MB-15, and his super mode is going to be bigger than Power Baser.


Now, for you guys that might not have heard, in addition to my main MP display I have one display just for various Optimus toys.  Armada Prime and Star Convoy are big deals for me, then.  If Maketoys is still planning on doing Cybertron/Galaxy Force Prime then I kind of just need MP versions of Rid/Car Robots Prime and G2 Hero Prime to die happy.

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That does look like a nice Astrotrain. I'm willing to give them a pass on the weird front-end of the shuttle since it is both toy- and toon-accurate, and some of those original triple-changer design shortcomings have become iconic parts of the characters' look.  Sorta like Bltzwing's ridiculous biplane-jet wings.


This is, of course, as opposed to a bunch of the other shuttles I've been critical of that are pretty far off from a real STS orbiter AND the original toy they're ripping off homaging.

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Yeah.  I’m keeping my eye on Thomas the tank engine too.  Hopefully the engineering is fixed and it’s fun to transform.   

If FT's designer is smart, he'd rip off improve on Transportation Captain and call it done. The Captain was already like 90% there.  Bigger size, better materials, better tolerances, better proportions, and better paint are all I really want.


That does look like a nice Astrotrain. I'm willing to give them a pass on the weird front-end of the shuttle since it is both toy- and toon-accurate, and some of those original triple-changer design shortcomings have become iconic parts of the characters' look.  Sorta like Bltzwing's ridiculous biplane-jet wings.


This is, of course, as opposed to a bunch of the other shuttles I've been critical of that are pretty far off from a real STS orbiter AND the original toy they're ripping off homaging.

Yep.  Just had a discussion with another guy about that.  He prefers more realistic alt modes, and I respect that, but those realistic alt modes just don't look like Blitzwing and Astrotrain to me.

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In fairness, while it wouldn't be right, I would be SUPER-IMPRESSED by an Astrotrain that did all three modes with both vehicles looking realistic and the humanoid mode looking ... well, sane.

It would be a complete pain in the rear to transform, almost certainly. But it would be by necessity, rather than "because over-engineering a simple task is fun!".


Honestly, I'm impressed that they managed to make the original Astrotrain toy as well as they did.

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I would be SUPER-IMPRESSED by an Astrotrain that did all three modes with both vehicles looking realistic and the humanoid mode looking ... well, sane.

I think ToyWorld's "Evila Star" almost managed that...



...although the robot mode proportions suffered along the same lines as the original G1 did.


Still, the Thomas renders look great.  

2023 can't come fast enough!  <_<

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I might have told this story before, but I was kind of poor as a kid.  Even though Transformers was my favorite thing as a kid I didn't have a ton of season 1 or 2 characters because my parents couldn't really afford much more than the occasional mini-bot.  But things improved for us in... I guess '86 or '87.  And for Christmas one year I did get Metroplex, who remains to this day one of the favorite toy I had as a kid.  And if you read my reviews in the official thread, you probably know that I picked up the Takara Legends version of the Titan-class Metroplex, whom I thought was a fairly good figure but it didn't quite scratch my Metroplex itch.  During a recent ebay flash sale I managed to pick up a figure that's been on my bucket list: Maketoy's Utopia, a 3P Metroplex.


For some people the fact that Titan Metroplex is significantly bigger is an immediate deal breaker for Utopia.  Metroplex is supposed to be huge, after all... but I think that's kind of worth considering a little more deeply.  Yes, you can do stuff like put Combiner Wars Aerialbots on Metroplex' vehicle-mode runways, and I've even seen people put Generations Springer in helicopter mode on the city-mode helipad.  But Autobots are supposed to live in that city mode.  After playing games like Fall of Cybertron and reading the IDW comics when I think of Metroplex I think of a robot who could hold Optimus Prime in the palm of his hand.  Those red windows on Metroplex's chest?  I imagine those as the windows of a ship's bridge, and that bridge is worked by a whole crew of Autobots.  Looked at that way even Legends-class figures are too big to scale with Metroplex.  Short of building a house-sized custom Metroplex I think we have to accept that the citybots are always going to be out-of-scale with other Transformers.  While Metroplex's size had a certain appeal when he was the only Titan-class figure, since Trypticon's release I think deciding that Metroplex is the clear winner just because he's bigger is short-sighted.  If I pose Trypticon as tall as he can be, with his back and legs straight (something you're not likely to do), then Metroplex is a head taller and looks too big next to his rival.  Lean him forward and get him in a bit of a crouch, though, and you can get Trypticon fairly even with Utopia (and if you're anything like me, if one is going to be bigger than the other you probably want Trypticon to come out on top).

However you land on matters of size and scale I think Utopia is, aesthetically, a lot closer to G1 than any version of the Titan.  He's got chunkier limbs and he doesn't have the same elongated torso and legs.  His arms have more of that boxy made-out-of-buildings look, and his shoulders are topped with spires like the G1 version (although I'd have preferred white).  The guns on the sides of his shoulders are less stylized (something you wouldn't normally expect to say about a Maketoys product over an official one) and aren't burneded by the flip-out handles.  His knee pads are closer to G1, and don't stick up so far.  That's not to say that Utopia isn't stylized.  He's got a lot translucent red and black paint breaking up all the white, and ironically the stuff that actually should be read like his toes and the sides of his shins are black.  His antenna are shaped more like blades, and he's got tank treads instead of wheels on his hips.  A lack of partsforming means that he's got a tower sticking up on his back.  Utopia probably isn't a figure you'd consider to be a proper MP representation of Metroplex... but that's goes double for Titan Metroplex.

Really, my biggest aesthetic gripe might be the screw holes.  I'm not usually super picky about those, especially when they're on the back, but Maketoys tried to keep the cost down by mirroring a lot of parts.  In some cases that means stuff like his right shoulder having visible screws while his left shoulder doesn't.  In other cases it means stuff like seeing actual screws on the front of his left hip and molded faux-screws on his right.  Fortunately for around $15 you can get a set of screw covers and tiny representations of Maketoys' Giant (Devastator) and Battle Tanker (G2 Laser Optimus) you can display with Utopia for a better sense of scale.


Speaking of accessories, Utopia comes with two big guns, 18 clear plastic stacks of Energon, two clips that can each hold six of those stacks, a small translucent red antenna, a small translucent red Utopia, and two identical sprues of little odds and ends you can use to make Utopia's alt modes seem more busy, I guess.  Truthfully, I'm going to take the sprues, the little Utopia, and the extra Energon stacks, put them in a baggie, and stash them away in the closet.  As for the big red guns, they're not designed to look like battleships on their own like the Titan's but they're much closer to the G1 guns that made up Sixgun's legs.  The handles can be folded back (on ratchets, no less), and there are something like a cockpit that can be opened on the top.  The little translucent Utopia is a little too big to fit in there, tough.  There's also a door on the side of each gun.  The clips with the stacked Energon slide into a gap inside, which is a cool touch.


Utopia's head is on a ball joint.  He can look up and down a little and tilt his head sideways a little; I'd have liked him to be able to look down a bit more, but it's already more than Titan Metroplex.  His shoulders rotate on ratchets, and they can move laterally about 60-75 degrees on ratchets.  His biceps swivel on tight ratchets.  His ratcheted elbows are double-jointed and, despite the blockiness of his shoulders and forearms, cans till bend at least 120-180 degrees (depending how how you position his biceps, which are on sliders for transformation).  His wrists can swivel.  His thumb is on a ball joint at the base with one additional hinged knuckle.  Each finger is also ball-jointed at the base but has two additional knuckle hinges.  He's got a ratcheted waist swivel.  His ratcheted hips can, in theory, get at least 90 degrees forward and backward.  Practically some tank tread kibble on his back has to be moved to get that 90 forward and will restrict the backward movement, especially if his hips aren't spread.  Which they can, about 45 degrees freely and 60 if you move the back kibble.  He's got ratcheted thigh swivels.  His ratcheted knees can bend 90 degrees.  He's feet can tilt up one click and down 90 degrees on a ratchet.  He's also got an ankle pivot, but it's not the best.  Basically, it's yet another ratchet, but the teeth are pretty widely-spaced.  With the shape of the leg around the foot you're limited to about one click.  The problem is that his lower legs are too big to stand stock straight the way the Titan does, and the teeth in his hip ratchets don't line up with his ankle ratchets.  So even if you put him in an A-stance, that stance is either slightly too narrow or slightly too wide and he's never totally flat on his feet.

He can hold the red guns just fine using a typical MP-style system with tabs on the handles and slots on his palms.  The guns on his shoulders can swivel, and they're not detachable.  Which tower (or both) you want peeking up from behind is up to you, but they towers are hinged at the base and they have a pair of cannons that can slide out from inside so you can angle them over his shoulders a bit.  If you don't want him to carry both guns, there's a keyed peg on the bottom of each gun that fits into the holes at the tower bases.


The guns also have keyed pegs on the sides.  You can use them to plug the guns onto Utopia's forearms.  And if you're like me and want a more G1, tower-free look you can angle them like wings so that they're mostly hidden behind his shoulders.  Side note, while we're looking at them- I like that you can slide guns out of those towers, but I really hate how Maketoys left the back of the towers open.  Utopia originally retailed for $400, and you shouldn't have to put up with this kind of Hasbro-esque plastic-saving cost-cutting on a $400 toy.


Of course, if we're talking G1 Metroplex we probably should decide if you mean G1 toy or G1 cartoon.  The G1 toy had red eyes, and Utopia can do that look (albeit with some black eyeliner).  The cartoon had a visor, though.  And if you push the forehead crest in, a translucent red visor will slide down over Utopia's eyes.  That's my preferred look, so I guess I like cartoon for my G1 Metroplex.  But options are good.


Speaking of the G1 cartoon, he had a double-barreled gun to the left of his head.  You can do that with Utopia, too.  Just flip around a panel on that side.  The gun is even hinged so it can move up and down.  The other side has some kind of molded room with translucent red windows.  You can plug the translucent red antenna into the top of it.

One other weird thing to note about robot mode... his toes open up.  Not sure why.  I guess you could store some of those extra Energon stacks or the other bits on the sprues in his feet.


Utopia's ship mode is arguably less G1 accurate than Titan Metroplex's.  I think a big part of that, though, is because Utopia actually transforms instead of sitting down and sticking his arms out behind him, and therefore doesn't look like a robot sitting down and sticking his arms out behind him.  In fact, the ship mode is surprisingly cohesive.  Aside from the towers sticking off the back with guns extended (what, are they supposed to be engines?) I could buy this ship mode as some kind Federation mobile suit carrier.


Unlike the G1 and Titan versions Utopia's arms are curled up.  The towers sticking out from behind kind of fill that need for something sticking out from behind, I guess.  Also, the instructions officially have you pluggin the big red guns in so they're pointing backward.  Again, maybe they're supposed to be engines?


There's no reason you can't turn them around so they're facing forward, which is what I prefer to do.  Actually, I'd prefer to plug them right into the middle of the runways like the G1 toy, but that's probably close enough.

But seriously, I do like this mode a lot.  The knee pads look like the catapult doors for launching an Aerialbot (or a mobile suit, or a Valkyrie) off the runway, while the panels covering his fists on the sides look like where cargo would be loaded.  Utopia's head and part of his chest are folded out of the way to reveal a bridge with fold out panels on the sides.  Which brings up the only thing I don't really like about this mode, and that's the transformation.  See, the top half of Utopia's chest is on sliders, and the sliders run through the part of Utopia that his head is on.  So to transform him to this mode you have to slide them back, lower each side, lift the section with the head up part of the way, slide the chest parts forward again, move the head section the rest of the way back, then slide the halves the of chest back again.


While I'd buy Utopia's ship mode as a spaceship, G1 Metroplex of course had wheels and was like some kind of land-driving aircraft carrier.  As I said, Utopia does away with the G1 wheels in favor of tank treads.  I don't know about you guys, but I think if someone ever built an aircraft carrier that traveled over land that tank treads are more probably than giant wheels.  There's eight pairs of treads total.  There's two treads on each calf, one on each hip, and a pair that unfold from his butt.  The ones on his legs are all on sliders, too.  The instructions aren't clear on the matter, but I think they're all closer to his feet in robot mode and closer to his the back of the ship in ship mode.  The pair on his butt have some piston bits that you can also fold out.  Sadly the treads don't roll, and Maketoys didn't put any wheels in them, so Utopia doesn't actually drive on the ground.


Again, Utopia actually transforms to his city mode.  The transformation does a pretty good job of making the city mode look visually distinct from the ship mode, something I'm not sure Titan Metroplex really pulls off (especially if you have the retail Hasbro version with only one gun to use as a tower).  The towers on his back come into play, and his shoulder armor slides down to cover his bicep, making it look like an actual tower and not a tower with an elbow in the middle.  A helipad flips out from inside his chest.  His thighs have to be positioned a certain way to allow the waist to rotate 180 and keep the hip treads out of the way, and I think it keeps things in-line better than the Titan's approach.  The backs of his legs don't open up like the Titans and is arguably less G1 accurate for it, but it's at least visually interesting, distinct from robot or ship mode, and not a big empty hollow space like the Titan.  So, even though it's visually distinct, it does have two things in common with the ship mode- it's more cohesive and looks less like a robot sitting down, and you still have to move the chest parts more times that you ideally want to because going from ship to city means raising the chest back up to get the clearance to rotate the waist, and going from robot to city means sliding the chest back and forth twice to keep the sliders lined up with the part the head is on.


While the thighs have to be positioned a certain way you can bend the knees however you like, so it's possible to give him more of a G1 spread.  Personally, I do like them pointed straight forward.  The right side of his chest does still open and have an extendable ramp.  It's big enough to drive a Legends-class or smaller car on, like Generations Scamper.  However, because of the way it folds up into his chest when it's closed you can't close Scamper in there.  Maybe a smaller car, like a Micromaster, would work.  Also, while the official transformation has the guns in the towers tucked away you do have the option to slide them out.


In addition to the door on his chest, the other side has a fold out door with molded missiles, just like the other versions of Metroplex.  Interestingly enough, there's a little door you can open on his arm tower as well.  And remember how I said his feet open up?  The instructions have them open in city mode, too, although they can't open very far.


As for the big red guns, I suppose you could attach them to the arms and have big cannons on the sides of towers, but the instructions have you plug them into the back.  I kind of like this.  From the front they're basically out of sight, and from the back they remind me of the kind of pipes/struts/geothermal doohickeys you might see on some kind of base or building in some sci-fi movie.

And while we're back there, on the left side of his back?  There's another door.  All these storage spaces, it's really a shame Maketoys didn't give us much to put in them.  Where's Scamper, slammer, and Sixgun?

So... let me preface this by saying that I've wanted a Utopia for awhile, I'm glad I finally got one, and with the flash sale on ebay I think I got him for a pretty good price (around $310 shipped).  I think he's all-around better than the Titan Metroplex- better proportions, better articulation, better aesthetics, better alt modes that don't look like different ways a robot can sit down, scales better with Titan Trypticon.

That being said, it's hard to actually recommend Utopia.  Today, in 2019, we live in a world where you can buy two-foot-tall MP Omega Supremes for under $300.  I just can't say that Utopia is worth the $400-$450 he went for at retail.  And really, retail's dried up.  While you might get lucky and find one for less on ebay or through a Facebook group like I did, most aftermarket listings I'm seeing are closer to $500-$800.  Even though I think it's an inferior toy I think the $100-$150 Generations Metroplex went for at retail was probably a more fair price for what you were getting.  Of course, stock of Metroplex has largely dried up, too, and aftermarket prices for any version of the Titan have gotten fairly absurd as well.

I guess my recommendation is ultimately this: think about how much you really want a Metroplex.  If $300+ is too much maybe try to find a good deal on a version of Titan Metroplex.  But if you're going to spend over $300, especially if you're want one badly enough to shell out for some of these aftermarket prices, then Utopia is the superior toy.

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