Wednesday, February 25, 2009

#20: Transformers Animated Waspinator

Why doez Univerze hate Wazpinator? I love the Animated line. I love Waspinator. This is a perfect match. Although he hasn't exactly appeared in the cartoon yet, this is a great figure. Like Black Arachnia, this is another reference to Beast Wars, in which Waspinator served as a sort of comic relief. I love this figure so much, I'm not even sure where to start. This isn't really a complaint, but his transformation is super easy. Basically, it's just bending back his abdomen, putting him upright, and folding his beast mode head down onto the chest. Voila, bot mode! As with all the other Animated toys, Waspinator is a great mix of form and function. He looks great and has good articulation. Also, his wings flap! There's a little button on his back to flap them. In bot mode, there are two tiny arms hanging off his chest amuse me to no end, they are oddly cute. I think this might be my favorite Animated figure so far, I definitely recommend picking him up when you run across him.

#19: Star Wars Saga Legends Sandtrooper

Look sir, droids! I may have more clone troopers than anything else, but I still love an Imperial troop. I actually already have a modern sandtrooper, but this one is different. This sandtrooper mostly shares a body with the most recently available stormtrooper, has a big staff instead of a big rifle, has a black shoulder pauldron instead of an orange one, and is clean instead of dirty. Oddly enough, the picture on the packaging shows a sandtrooper with filthy armor, a white shoulder pauldron, and a large rifle. Perhaps it is a variant, but so far I have only seen this sandtrooper in the current release, and Hasbro's webshop shows this clean one for sale. I will probably pick up a filthy version if I run across one. As a stormtrooper variant, he has a nice classic look, with a little extra gear to set him apart. Since he is based on that stormtrooper body, he is also well articulated, although I do think the natural stance is a little narrow. It looks good for standing at attention, but not very casual. I can't resist building my Imperial and Republic forces, so this is a good troop to pick up.

#18: Tech Deck 96 mm Toy Machine Four Pack

Radical! The blogosphere alerted me to the fact that the Tech Deck Dude line has been putting out toys that very blatantly are copying various pop culture properties. Curious, I decided to check this out while on my latest toy run. I did indeed see a Tech Deck Dude version of Robocop, the Governator, the Dude, Blofeld, and Hunter S. Thompson(!). Interesting as these were, I decided that I could pass on owning any of them. Then I noticed that there are a bunch of regular tiny skateboards, and decided that the rest of my toys could be living a more XTREME lifestyle. Based solely on the designs, I went with a four pack of Toy Machine designed decks. It is cool that they have licensed actual skateboarding companies for these little boards. Included in the package was a little tool and some extra risers in case I feel my boards aren't high enough off the ground. That doesn't sound so exciting to me, so I will probably leave my boards as they are. These are fun little boards, they also come in single packs, and you can get little ramps for them as well. I may have to pick up a medic figure of some sort, as I have a feeling there will be some dislocated or broken bones around here in the near future.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

#17: Star Wars Saga Legends ARC Trooper Commander

Another clone! The clone is basically a repaint of Alpha from the comic pack with Obi-Wan, although with a different skirt. His helmet is removable, and there's a decently sized head underneath. He is well articulated, although the waist is a swivel rather than a ball. He looks cool, and as an ARC, he is fairly different from the average clone trooper, so he will stick out. There was another ARC trooper released as part of the Saga Legends line recently, with yellow markings, a skirt without holsters, and different legs, but otherwise the same. So if you have one you may not want the other, unless you're like me and are always willing to buy another clone. I should also mention that figures in the Saga Legends line come with a weapons locker, which is a little cardboard box filled with guns. I guess this is nice if you need to arm some other figures, or like switching up the weapons a figure uses. If they didn't include these and lowered the price, that would be great by me. Basically, this is another clone, slightly different from other releases. If it's different enough for you, go ahead and pick one up.

#16: Star Wars Saga Legends Snowtrooper

The Empire strikes back! Aside from first appearing in my favorite film from the Star Wars saga, snowtroopers are my favorite variety of imperial troop. Although less iconic than stormtroopers, I think their even more faceless helmets are a bit more intimidating. When I saw that there would be a snowtrooper coming out I was definitely looking forward to picking one up. Did it disappoint? Well, a little. My only problem with this figure is the helmet. It's hard to see in this picture, but the color is a little off in comparison with the rest of the armor. Also, it doesn't stay on very well. Like many recent figures of imperial troops, this snowtrooper is revealed as a Jango clone too, albeit one with a tiny head. If they had used a slightly larger head, this wouldn't be a problem. Complaints out of the way, this is otherwise a really cool figure. Since it's a snowtrooper I'm automatically biased in its favor, but it has all the articulation we've come to expect on Star Wars figures, and it looks good. It even has a cloth skirt, which won't get in the way like a plastic one would. This figure is actually a straight re-release of the vintage style figure from 2007, which cost ten dollars at the time. As a part of the Saga Legends collection, it can be picked up for a couple dollars less, definitely a good buy.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

#15: Indiana Jones German Soldier with Motorcycle

Vrrrm! Another clearance buy, I picked this up mostly because I wanted the motorcycle. The motorcycle itself is pretty cool. I'm no expert on vintage motorcycles, but this one looks realistic enough to me. It would be a nice touch if the extraneous baggage was designed to be removable, but that is no great loss. The wheels turn freely, it can be steered, and there is a stand to keep it upright. There is even what looks like an attachment for a side car, but unfortunately Hasbro won't be making one.

The German soldier is a good figure as well. He is articulated well, so getting him into a riding position is no problem, and he can stand around easily as well. His helmet is removable, plus he comes with a handgun that can fit into a holster on his side, and a submachine gun that can hang from his shoulder on a strap. The lower part of his coat is made of a soft fabric, so it won't get in the way when he is on the motorcycle and can hang down while he's standing.

#14: G.I. Joe Cobra H.I.S.S. with Cobra H.I.S.S. Commander

Cobra! Because they take up so much room, I don't often buy vehicles for my figures. G.I. Joe always had some of the coolest vehicles, and the HISS is probably the most iconic of them. It has a very distinctive look to it, and although it looks impractical for any kind of real warfare, it fits right in with the G.I. Joe world with a good deal of style. This is one toy that's just as cool as you remember it. Aside from the cockpit, you can fit a figure in the gun turret, and have some more riding along on the back. This vehicle is definitely tops. The bee's knees, even.

The HISS isn't KITT, it can't drive itself. So a HISS Commander is included. I seem to remember the standard Cobra troopers driving these things in the cartoon, but I'm not going to complain about getting a new figure. The HISS Commander looks pretty good in the cockpit. Only problem is the huge holster on his leg makes it a little hard to stuff him in properly. He will go in, but I think he would have been better without the holster. He could have just left his handgun on his lap or something. Either way, this is otherwise a quality figure. This whole set is really cool, and worth picking up.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

#13: G.I. Joe Scarlett

Yo Joe! I haven't been buying a lot of them, but I am enjoying the resurgent G.I. Joe line. Currently, my Joes are way outgunned by Cobra, so the addition of Scarlett helps even things out a little. This figure looks really good, and is well articulated. The pony tail is curved in such a way that it doesn't hinder the head articulation. Scarlett comes with her trademark crossbow (what an odd choice to take into battle), a handgun, and a stand. This line has been great about making quality figures that update the original toys to modern standards, and Scarlett is no exception.

#12: Star Wars Clone Wars Clone Trooper with Space Gear

Space! This is another animated clone trooper, so it has the same sculpt and articulation as the rest. Plus he has some added space gear accessories and a nifty paint job. I'm not sure if this style of armor has appeared in the animation. I don't remember it, anyway. He has what I assume is meant to be a jet pack on his back, which launches a rocket. The chestpiece has an some tubes that go up to the "mouth" of the helmet, but don't attach, so the head's movement is unimpeded. The neatest thing about this figure is the working holster on its chest. I'm not sure why, but something about that just amuses me. Personally, I think it looks better without the jet pack, but this is a solid figure.

Monday, February 16, 2009

#11 Star Wars Clone Wars 212th Attack Battalion Clone Trooper

Clones! I have a lot of clone troopers, so I am sort of surprised that it took over a month into the new year before I got a new one. This trooper is from the 212th, which is under Commander Cody. These are the troopers that showed up on Utapau in Revenge of the Sith. Now my animated Cody has someone to boss around.

Anyway, the figure is a regular animated clone with some extra paint apps. As such, it's a good figure, with good articulation and an interesting look to it. At first I wasn't too sure about the animated figures, but they have been winning me over. If you don't mind clones that stick out a little from your "realistic" figures, don't pass up the animated clone toys.

Friday, February 13, 2009

#10: Star Wars comic pack Luke and clone Emperor

Emperor's black bones! This comic pack comes with the first issue of Dark Empire II, which I'm not sure if I've actually read, or have just read the synopsis of. I know that I've read Dark Empire. I think the Luke figure has a pretty good likeness, and it's well articulated. The cloak is stuck in that position, but at least it looks cool, and doesn't get in the way too much. The hilt on his lightsaber doesn't match the one he used in Return of the Jedi, and judging by the cover the toy doesn't match the comic either. Luke also comes with a Jedi holocron that won't stand up on its own. One could conceivably use it as a Lament Configuration from Hellraiser as well.

The Emperor figure is really cool. Thought he was dead, did you? Well, in Dark Empire, it turns out that ol' Palpatine had figured out a way to cheat death, sort of. His plan was to keep a bunch of clones of himself handy, so that if he died, his spirit would have a brand new body to occupy. And this is one of those bodies. It is probably one of the most interesting looking Emperor figures. If you are so inclined, you can remove his robe, although what's underneath is not pretty. This is a cool set, definitely worth picking it up.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

#9: LEGO Star Wars Clone Walker Battle Pack

LEGO! A few months ago, I got another Star Wars LEGO set, mainly for the little stormtrooper figures. I got this set mainly for the clone trooper figures. I like collecting the clones. I'm not sure if this walker is supposed to be anything that has actually been named in the Star Wars universe, but I have a suspicion that it was something designed just for this set. It looks somewhat similar to an AT-RT, but with seating for two. There are two basic clones, a pilot, and a commander in this set. What's really odd is that they have flesh colored heads instead of the standard LEGO yellow. The stormies in my other set didn't have faces under their helmets, just black heads, so this was a surprise to me. I think this is a good set. Ten dollars for a vehicle and four figures is worth it in my book.
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