Sunday, 28 September 2014

Review: MOTUC Club Eternia Quarter 3

Expensive month, this one, what with the 4 figures arriving with the standard Club Eternia plus 3 more coming via the just-started Club Etheria (containing She-Ra figures) and a mix of characters spanning (most) of the incarnations of He-Man.

Monday, 22 September 2014

1 page comic #4: Masters of the Universe

A change from Transformers for this one and, after finding a new level of respect for colourists from doing the previous comics, now I have a new respect for letterers.

Friday, 19 September 2014

Review: Talisman (3rd Edition)

I have a distant memory of the shop. From what I recall (and we all know how unreliable memory is) it was probably in Chester and sold nothing other than bunch of board games. The walls were lined with piles of them, while the centre was taken up with...something. I don't think there were any windows; maybe it was in some kind of basement? I only went in that shop once, and can't be certain that it existed before or after that single visit.

Which lends itself very nicely to the kind of game Talisman is.

I think I bought what turned out to be the 2nd edition of Talisman (I understand it only has a cosmetic difference to the 1st edition) solely on the fact that there was a great big dragon on the front of the box.Wings spread, looking very dynamic. It turned out to be a very fun game indeed for 8 year old(? complete guess at age) me. Set in a fantasy world, you traveled the board, increasing your skills, before tackling the dragon in the centre and claiming the Crown of Command.

I had no idea about Games Workshop or their miniatures at the time, in fact it was only when the 3rd edition was released, in 1994, by now having painted a few Citadel Miniatures and attempted to read the rules of Warhammer, that pieced together the the game and the company in my mind.

Obviously I had to buy the new, improved version of my favourite game!

Tuesday, 16 September 2014

Review: Unique Toys Salmoore (Not Go-Bots Cy-Kill)

People tend to look down on Go-Bots. And it's true; despite being first to market they were never as successful as their transforming rivals. But I've always been of the opinion that Go-Bots were unfairly judged. Take the cartoon. Many would argue that the Transformers cartoon was vastly superior. I would suggest they rewatch a couple of episodes of the original Transformers cartoon first.  Fried gold, it certainly isn't.

The Go-Bots cartoon is exactly what you'd expect from Hanna-Barbera, in style and tone. I also liked the fact that 95% of the time they didn't cheat with their transformations, unlike Transformers. For example, burned into my memory is Rest-Q, in Ambulance mode, crashing and rolling within the first few minutes of the opening episode of the cartoon, revealing his face underneath...just like the toy. In the Transformers 'toon that toy-limitation wouldn't have been there and you'd have seen a perfect bottom-of-ambulance instead.

The Go-Bots toys were licensed by Tonka from Bandai in Japan. Unlike Hasbro, which bought the moulds to their Transformers toys outright, this means that the names and characters were owned by Tonka but the rights to the actual toys were - and still are - owned by Bandai. This means that it's 99% certain that these toys will never be reissued.

Much later Tonka was bought by Hasbro, who've since released a series of Go-Bots, which had absolutely nothing to do with the original line. They did, however, release Fracture, which is essentially an updated Crasher. But that was it.

Maybe spurred by this lack of production from Hasbro, a number of 3rd Party companies have released Go-Bot homages lately, which brings me nicely (and eventually) to my review: Salmoore aka Cy-Kill, leader of the evil Renegades.

Friday, 12 September 2014

Mighty Morphin Power Rangers Legacy Dragonzord

The Dragonzord is the best Power Rangers zord there has ever been; this is an undisputed fact. So says me. Yes, it may be limited in its range of arm movement. And in its range of leg movement. And... Well, look, it's just awesome, okay? The Green Ranger was the coolest ranger and he had the best zord. Even if he couldn't ride inside it.

As part of the 20th Anniversary line, some time ago (can't remember how long) Bandai released an updated MMPR Megazord, which was generally better than the original one because it featured a load of die cast metal. You can read all about it here.  Due to the success of that, next on Bandai's list of updates was obviously the Dragonzord.

Wednesday, 10 September 2014

Review: MOTUC SDCC Filmation Hordak

I posted in the lead-up to San Diego Comic Con about the disappointment that was the exclusive figure Mattel were selling at the convention. Despite this, I still went ahead and bought it from when he went on sale there shortly after the con ended.

Monday, 8 September 2014

Review: Transformers Generations Rattrap

Updates of Beast Wars toys have been appearing slowly but steadily over the past few years. It wasn't very long ago that a Voyager-sized Rhinox arrived on the scene and now we have Rattrap.

Saturday, 6 September 2014

Review: Transformers Generations Skybyte

If was likely coincidence that led to 2015 having a new release of Skybyte and Peter Spellos, the voice of the character in the Robots in Disguise cartoon, being at Auto Assembly, but it was a great coincidence. Did the presence of Spellos increase sales of the toy? I guess we'll never know.

I think it's fair to say that RiD never got a fantastic welcome from Transformers fans. It was great to see the return of vehicles, Autobots and indeed the 'Transformers' name front and centre after numerous years of beasts, but I will put my hand up and say that I gave up watching the cartoon after a handful of episodes. It wasn't that I was a Grown Up and thus not the intended audience - I'd watched Beast Wars for the first time very shortly beforehand - it simply wasn't that good.

It's interesting that one of the things that was welcomed was the bizarre flying shark. Of all the characters from RiD to remake, Skybyte makes a lot of sense.

Thursday, 4 September 2014

Review: Lego Ghostbusters Ecto-1

Ghostbusters turns 30 this year and you can speculate as to whether that had anything to do with this Lego Cuusoo (now Lego Ideas) becoming a reality. For those not in the know, Lego Ideas is a website where anyone can announce their idea for a new Lego set to the world. The ideas are voted on by the public and once it reaches 10,000 votes Lego take the set into consideration for making it into a 'real' set. There are a bunch of criteria as to whether this final step can be taken, for example it must be 'family friendly' and have no licensing issues.

Ecto-1 was one of those sets to make it through and a jolly nice set it is too.

Tuesday, 2 September 2014

Review: Transformers Generations Scoop

I don't know anything about the character of Transformer Scoop. I didn't have the original toy, I've never even seen it. As far as I can recall, I've never read a comic featuring Scoop either.

So why did I buy him at Auto Assembly? Well, I liked the look of him, I liked the price, and, most importantly, he came with two little Target Masters. Bless the tiny robots!