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Introducing Seibertron.com's "Buried Treasure Reviews"

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Introducing Seibertron.com's "Buried Treasure Reviews"

Postby Skowl » Mon Jan 05, 2009 9:30 pm

The year 2009 marks the 25th anniversary of the Transformers franchise. To celebrate this incredible milestone, Seibertron.com will look back at a quarter-century of great Transformers toys, bringing back into the limelight some brilliant figures that have fallen through the cracks over the years.

Once a week, a fan (be it a member of the staff or a user on the site) will have the opportunity to write about one of their favourite "hidden gems" of the Transformers Universe, and have their review posted on the site's front page.

We hope this feature will be a great success, and that many of you will be encouraged to look back at the last 25 years of Transformers and perhaps take a worthwhile second-look at some real unsung classics of the Transformers universe.

___________________________________________________________________

Buried Treasure - Cannonball (Cybertron series - 2006)

By Skowl

Avast ye Transformer fans! For the inaugural "Buried Treasure" Review, I decided to pick a figure that embodies the very notion of "buried treasure." Pirates have not been all that common in the franchise, and for years only the Beast Wars II Seacons could lay claim to that title. But all that changed during the amazing "Transformers Cybertron" line, when we were given a unique repaint of popular Autobot character.

The Red Alert mold had been released in the first wave of Deluxe figures and, from my memory, had been a decent hit with the fans. The mold was a vast improvement over the Armada Red Alert but still retained many of the character's traits. From the obvious "medic" element, to the sympathetic look on the head sculpt, to all the first aid tools and add-ons - it was obvious that the new Cybertron Red Alert mold was all-Autobot. Which is why many fans were so surprised to see the figure repainted later down the line... as a Decepticon!

Around the same time that the Autobot Red Alert got a massive upgrade, the deluxe-class Decepticon Cannonball was released. Perhaps the character, whose bio reveals him to be a looter of sorts, salvaged the old Red Alert toy and saw it as a good enough mold to use for himself!

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It's difficult to write about any figure from the Cybertron line without mentionning the brilliant packaging. The series has come and gone, but it still had the most eye-catching packaging of any Transformers toy line I've ever seen. From the faction-shaped card backing to the brilliant character art, everything about the packaging was clean, sharp and just great to look at. With nice, dark colours and cool silver highlights, Cannonball blends in beautifully with the packaging, making him a great piece for any MOC/MIB collector.

But the real fun starts when you get this little buccaneer out of the packaging. It's amazing what a little paint can do, isn't it? Looking at Cannonball, it's difficult to tell he was once an Autobot ambulance (type thing). The dark colours give him a very menacing look, ressembling some sort of hearse, and the whole thing is beautifully decorated with sharp silver highlights, including silver trim and mag wheels, and wicked skull decals that really add alot of personality to the figure (as if a Transforming pirate wasn't cool enough already).

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The old "Cyber Key" gimmick works just as well with Cannonball as it did with Red Alert. Just stick it in the slot at the rear end of the car and watch as some cannons flip out, ready to blow any landlubber to pieces (should I stop with the pirate jokes? They're just so easy to write!). Not an amazing feature, but still added value, especially since the key gimmick really doesn't get in the way of the toy's functionality.

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His transformation, like Red Alert's, is unique and shows alot of creativity in the engineering. Cannonball's body is basically made from the middle of the car, while the front and back ends come together to form the legs.

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Yes, Cannonball's vehicle mode is wicked, but it's his robot mode that really makes him shine. I doubt many people thought "pirate" when they first laid eyes on Cybertron Red Alert, but it works so well in robot mode you would think that's what the designers were aiming for all along. Red Alert's "gun-hand" and add-ons just scream pirate-y hook hanks and the black "eye-patch" over the left side of his visor is a real nice touch. The colours work really well in this mode, with the nice silver detailing continuing over his chest, shoulders and legs and the clear purple windows of his vehicle look great in the proper lighting. And don't forget how cool those blue skeleton decals look in robot mode - two on his shoulders and the big skull on his back. Sweet.

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He is fairly poseable in robot mode, but lacks alot of movement in his legs. It's ok though, he more than makes up for it by having cool, interchangeable pirate weapons (handy for shooting blaggards in the face), a great colour scheme with lots of unique detail and an awesome bio. Heck, he doesn't need to be super-poseable, he looks great just standing there!

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Cannonball is a brilliant figure and one of the best, most original repaints in the history of the franchise. His unique personality makes him a great addition to any collection, and a must have for pirate fans... if you can ignore the fact that this pirate transforms into a car of all things...

So set sail, collectors! This is one piece of Transformers treasure that should definately not stay buried!

___________________________________________________________________

You can visit the complete Cannonball gallery on Seibertron.com by clicking here, and find your own buried treasures by visiting all the galleries here!

If you would like to submit a review of an obscure or rare Transformer figure for our "Buried Treasure" feature, please contact me (Skowl) via private message!
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Re: Introducing Seibertron.com's "Buried Treasure Reviews"

Postby 1337W422102 » Mon Jan 05, 2009 9:50 pm

Motto: "I come from the Net."
Weapon: Double-Barreled, Armor-Piercing Particle Beam Cann...
Honestly, meh.

The vehicle mode does nothing for me. It's an ugly riced-out SUV with crap sticking out the top.

Robot mode is terrible-looking. The 'eye patch' looks like a paint error and that shade of brownish-orange is literally nausea-inducing. Plus, it retains the limited poseability of Red Alert.

The figure is, at best, an 'I see what you did there' figure, and certainly not a WIN.
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Re: Introducing Seibertron.com's "Buried Treasure Reviews"

Postby Nickolai » Mon Jan 05, 2009 10:00 pm

Weapon: Battle Blades
Cannonball was the best they could plausibly execute a good idea.

The awesome but impractical thing to have done with Cannonball would have been to take Thunderblast's mold and retool it into a "male" bot.
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Re: Introducing Seibertron.com's "Buried Treasure Reviews"

Postby 1337W422102 » Mon Jan 05, 2009 10:07 pm

Motto: "I come from the Net."
Weapon: Double-Barreled, Armor-Piercing Particle Beam Cann...
Nickolai wrote:The awesome but impractical thing to have done with Cannonball would have been to take Thunderblast's mold and retool it into a "male" bot.

No man, leave her as a saucy pirate wench. Hawt.
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Re: Introducing Seibertron.com's "Buried Treasure Reviews"

Postby ShGarland_1383 » Mon Jan 05, 2009 10:23 pm

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Weapon: Reciprocating Laser Cannon
I really liked Cannonball. I wasn't really interested in this mold as Red Alert, but when this repaint came around I made sure to grab it. It was one of those times where the repaint was a lot better than the original IMO. Only difference with this occasion was that the original didn't suck, it just didn't interest me the way Cannonball did.
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Re: Introducing Seibertron.com's "Buried Treasure Reviews"

Postby Omega Charge » Mon Jan 05, 2009 10:26 pm

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I tried to pick him up at the end of the Cybertron line, but missed him. I think he looks cool and quite unique, though I dislike the mold's fat legs.
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Re: Introducing Seibertron.com's "Buried Treasure Reviews"

Postby 8 bit » Mon Jan 05, 2009 10:27 pm

Motto: "You only live thrice."
Weapon: Buffalo Missile
Great review; I love Cannonball. The fact that he's a pirate and has an arm-changing gimmick reminds me of another favorite pirate of mine—Trap Jaw from MOTU.

I also think it's pretty neat that the Cybertron line had a bounty hunter—Crosswise. Kind of makes the two of them each other's nemesis IMO. Sort of like Samus and the Space Pirates.
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Re: Introducing Seibertron.com's "Buried Treasure Reviews"

Postby Valandar » Mon Jan 05, 2009 10:54 pm

Motto: "It doesn't matter if the glass is half full or half empty, only that you work to make it full."
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I dunno, my favorite deco of that mold is actually Crankcase, the movie line repaint from Wal-Mart.
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Re: Introducing Seibertron.com's "Buried Treasure Reviews"

Postby zero-kaiser » Mon Jan 05, 2009 11:04 pm

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awesome review Skowl :) i picked up Cannonball myself last year, mostly because of how cool he looked.. and the fact he was a frikkin pirate!

i can honestly say i wholeheartedly agree with what you said about him, he is an awesome figure.. out of 100 and something in my collection, he's one i keep finding myself picking up off the shelf. probably why he's right at the front now i think about it.. lol

im looking forward to seeing what other buried treasure reviews we might see :)
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Re: Introducing Seibertron.com's "Buried Treasure Reviews"

Postby ponycorn » Tue Jan 06, 2009 12:17 am

Don't forget that he also came in a doublepack pitted against another wonderful figure - Downshift! (Later to be repainted as the much beloved Big Daddy)

Cannonball must have been loved too, he even played a solid supporting role in one of those TFCC .pdf prose stories. Cannonball is cool, he hires Astrotrain to do his dirty work for him, even blackmails Choochoorocket!
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Re: Introducing Seibertron.com's "Buried Treasure Reviews"

Postby Sledge » Tue Jan 06, 2009 3:28 am

This has been on my list of "I must get one" for so long. :( One day, one day...
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Re: Introducing Seibertron.com's "Buried Treasure Reviews"

Postby Nickolai » Tue Jan 06, 2009 4:15 am

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Ah, Skowl, you forgot one of the best points about Cannonball - he comes in a 2 pack with Downshift, making it perhaps the best value for money 2-pack ever made.
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Re: Introducing Seibertron.com's "Buried Treasure Reviews"

Postby olokin » Tue Jan 06, 2009 6:49 am

This is a great figure! Very useful in keeping up with the hidden gems of the 25 years of the Transformers line. Wicked first review too. Will this be weekly or monthly?
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Re: Introducing Seibertron.com's "Buried Treasure Reviews"

Postby Skowl » Tue Jan 06, 2009 7:30 am

olokin wrote:This is a great figure! Very useful in keeping up with the hidden gems of the 25 years of the Transformers line. Wicked first review too. Will this be weekly or monthly?


Hopefully weekly. We couldn't do it on a monthly basis since that would mean we could only do 12 reviews in a year, and there are more great figures than that! We got 25 years worth to cover!
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Re: Introducing Seibertron.com's "Buried Treasure Reviews"

Postby GuyIncognito » Tue Jan 06, 2009 9:00 am

Nickolai wrote:Ah, Skowl, you forgot one of the best points about Cannonball - he comes in a 2 pack with Downshift, making it perhaps the best value for money 2-pack ever made.


Yup, and you can still get that 2-pack for a fair price on eBay. I got it just recently for $20, including shipping! And Downshift is even cooler than Cannonball, IMO! So, yeah, it probably is one the best TF 2-packs ever.
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Re: Introducing Seibertron.com's "Buried Treasure Reviews"

Postby Skowl » Tue Jan 06, 2009 9:09 am

GuyIncognito wrote:
Nickolai wrote:Ah, Skowl, you forgot one of the best points about Cannonball - he comes in a 2 pack with Downshift, making it perhaps the best value for money 2-pack ever made.


Yup, and you can still get that 2-pack for a fair price on eBay. I got it just recently for $20, including shipping! And Downshift is even cooler than Cannonball, IMO! So, yeah, it probably is one the best TF 2-packs ever.


For the record, I was not even aware that two-pack even existed. Most of those value packs were never released in Canada, so I never got to see them in stores. But yeah, it's great added value, especially since Downshift is also a brilliant figure.
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Re: Introducing Seibertron.com's "Buried Treasure Reviews"

Postby dragons » Tue Jan 06, 2009 10:36 am

cannonball i dont like to much suv pirate with lights i undestand the lights on his vehical mode have to do with anything ma look better if they took the lights off.

eye patch i took it as a two face thing going on there he look like his face was half burned or damaged

crankcase right now is the only rpaint i like so far detail bio everyything he looks like red alert evil twin with differnt colors.
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Re: Introducing Seibertron.com's "Buried Treasure Reviews"

Postby Overcracker » Tue Jan 06, 2009 12:00 pm

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While I liked Red alert, I simply don't think the Mold is that good.
It does have its good points mostly his little accessories, I still think the execution could have been a lot better.

With that said, I think the Cannonball deco is really original, and really makes the mold completely different from Red Alert. But I don't particularly like it.

But as someone already said I think Crankcase is a better repaint.
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Re: Introducing Seibertron.com's "Buried Treasure Reviews"

Postby Kryptikore » Tue Jan 06, 2009 2:18 pm

It took me awhile to pick up Cannonball and as soon as I got and opened it I fell in love with it. I like the way Cannonball transforms because it's so unique. The color scheme really brings out the detail of the figure unlike Red Alert. It does lack some movment, but all and all still a great figure!
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Re: Introducing Seibertron.com's "Buried Treasure Reviews"

Postby 8 bit » Tue Jan 06, 2009 6:11 pm

Motto: "You only live thrice."
Weapon: Buffalo Missile
Skowl wrote:Hopefully weekly. We couldn't do it on a monthly basis since that would mean we could only do 12 reviews in a year, and there are more great figures than that! We got 25 years worth to cover!

This is exciting stuff! Can't wait to see who's next!
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Re: Introducing Seibertron.com's "Buried Treasure Reviews"

Postby Psychomud » Tue Jan 06, 2009 7:24 pm

I could not agree more! This figure is a TRUE buried treasure!!!!

My fiancee nabbed him for me as a gift. I never even knew he existed. In fact when I first saw him as she gave me the gift I thought "meh, well it's one figure I do not currently have."

Then I opened up the packaging - from there on out I was sold - hands down a really FUN figure that a lot of folks passed on! I am amazed and grateful I got this one - cannonball is SO fun! Yet so underrated! :mrgreen:
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Re: Introducing Seibertron.com's "Buried Treasure Reviews"

Postby Riotflea » Wed Jan 07, 2009 2:09 am

I'm so going to get these two on eBay, then swap out the ugly tan/gold on Cannonball with the darker colors from Red Alert.

...Then I'll... ...I dunno', stick firecrackers all over Red Alert's body lol.

EDIT: Oh, oh, and THEN I have to get the other repaint of him, Crankcase... just for the cool, trans-purple Decepticon planet key!

I can give Crankcase Cannonball's gold parts, Crankcase giving his blue arms and silver legs to Red Alert who... once again winds up with firecrackers on him.

Oh well, 2 out of 3 ain't bad...
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Re: Introducing Seibertron.com's "Buried Treasure Reviews"

Postby Ravage XK » Wed Jan 07, 2009 3:06 am

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Weapon: 20 Megavolt Stun Rifle
This review prompted me to open my Cannonball and have a look.

Glad I did, it is a good little figure with an interesting transformation and a good look. Nice and stable and the feet are pretty adaptive to allow a number of different action poses. My only gripe is the head showing in alt mode.
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Re: Introducing Seibertron.com's "Buried Treasure Reviews"

Postby Psychomud » Wed Jan 07, 2009 3:48 pm

Ravage XK wrote:This review prompted me to open my Cannonball and have a look.

Glad I did, it is a good little figure with an interesting transformation and a good look. Nice and stable and the feet are pretty adaptive to allow a number of different action poses. My only gripe is the head showing in alt mode.


Fantastic! Didn't know what you were missing right? That fig is awesome! ;-)


As for the head in alt-mode - it can be seen via the wide front window right? Personnally, I love it when the toy developers set them up like that. I know a lot of folks don't like that, but I think it's fun - and funny. ;-)
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Re: Introducing Seibertron.com's "Buried Treasure Reviews"

Postby Valandar » Wed Jan 07, 2009 4:34 pm

Motto: "It doesn't matter if the glass is half full or half empty, only that you work to make it full."
Weapon: Particle Beam Cannon
Psychomud wrote:
Ravage XK wrote:This review prompted me to open my Cannonball and have a look.

Glad I did, it is a good little figure with an interesting transformation and a good look. Nice and stable and the feet are pretty adaptive to allow a number of different action poses. My only gripe is the head showing in alt mode.


Fantastic! Didn't know what you were missing right? That fig is awesome! ;-)


As for the head in alt-mode - it can be seen via the wide front window right? Personnally, I love it when the toy developers set them up like that. I know a lot of folks don't like that, but I think it's fun - and funny. ;-)


Nope - the top half of the head is clearly visible between the 'alarm lights'.
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