Top 5 Best Years of the Transformers Brand / Franchise

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Top 5 Best Years of the Transformers Brand / Franchise

Postby william-james88 » Sun Jan 01, 2017 11:01 pm

Every two weeks, Seibertron.com brings you a Top 5 list related to all things Transformers written by me, your fellow editor. These are the opinions of just a few people, since I am joined by several other contributors today, so what matters most is what you guys think of the topic or list, and I hope to see your own lists or comments on omissions and ranking. Let's have fun! All previous lists can be found here.

Top 5 Best Years of the Transformers Brand / Franchise

With one of the best years of all time to be a Transformers collector wrapped up, I thought it would be high time we got a list of the best years ever for the franchise. This will be predominantly toy focused and western focused when it comes to accompanying media and toy availability. The community had a say in this list, especially fellow Seibertronian Amelie who first suggested it. Many contributed to this list and you can read all our opinions below!


5. 1996

1996, because after the waning years of G2 and the Japanese series after the ending of season 3, Transformers faded from pop culture. In comes Beast Wars kicking down the door, which an actual awesome story and some pretty cool toys, and the franchise is back in business. - Rodimus Prime

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Transformers Beast Wars Optimus Primal (Convoy) Gallery

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Transformers Beast Wars Megatron Gallery

While G1 started it all, the reason we are all still here today able to collect toys is because of Beast Wars. This rejuvination of the brand with a totally new direction is what saved the brand and Hasbro has said so a few times themselves. It is how I personally got into the brand and it is a staple of all 90s boys and girls just as G1 was for kids growing in the 80s. There are also two very important factors that should not get overlooked. Beast Wars brought about the articulation we still use today in toys. Due to the innovations of this era, several have aged very well. The other factor is the strong sense of storytelling in the show. To this day, Beast Wars is still the best written Transformers show we ever got in the west and the idea of emphasis on characterization in the Transfomers brand that people love so much in today's comics originates from here. Remember, this is the year we got the very best character in all of Transformers fiction, Dinobot. - William-James88

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4. 1984

This is where it all started. Hasbro brought over some amazing toys from Asia (predominantly Japan) over to the west and with the help of the geniuses at Marvel, they created this world of Transforming sentient robots to go along with the toys. You could follow their adventures on television or in comics and both highlighted the toys you could buy in different ways. The toys themselves were gems on their own and a dream come true for many of us. This is the only brans where you can really get two toys for the price of one. You could have a vehicle that looked just like your other toy cars, but it could also become a robot. And not only did you have the playability that came with a robot AND a vehicle, but you also had the added puzzle of getting it from one shape to the next. This was special and it is still special today, especially when you see that a deluxe toy that has all this playability next to a similarly priced Star Wars action figure that can simply be posed in a few different ways. While technology and storytelling has evolved from those days, we must always remember 1984, the year which gave us Transformers. - William-James88

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Transformers G1 1984 Prowl (Reissue) Gallery

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Transformers G1 1984 Soundwave (Reissue) Gallery


3. 2016

Recency bias be damned, it was a damn good year. The generations line on Hasbro's end kept giving us these amazing updates to the G1 era, bringing back the golden age of Transformers for a whole new generation with their most ambitious combiners and the return of Headmasters with more playability than ever before. We got objectively the best combiners ever with Takara especially going all out to give us unique molds and updates for Bruticus and Computron, two combiners with very diversified limbs, as well as both Hasbro and Takara having fun with the combiner system with Victorion, Sky Lynx as a torso and Grand Galvatron, the later being one of the most beautifully toys I ever had. We also finally got an update to Fortress Maximus, the aforementioned Sky Lynx and Powermaster Optimus Prime (along with Liokaiser, a character we would have never thought Hasbro to bring us). We also got the first MP Beast Wars figure with Optimus Primal, along with MP Shockwave (like Skylynx this was Takara's first crack ever at designing that transformation ever, since neither were originally Takara toys), Ironhide, Ratchet, 2 coneheads, Inferno and Hot Rod. Plus, Robots in Disguise pulled a 180 and became an amazing line to collect with the most original transformations around. We had 4 lines pulling out all the stops!

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Transformers Titans Return Fortress Maximus Gallery

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Transformers: Robots In Disguise Thunderhoof Gallery

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Transformers Masterpiece Ratchet Gallery

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Transformers Unite Warriors Grand Galvatron Gallery


2. 1986

The movie had come out and Hasbro had pretty much exhausted the Diaclone line and finally in 1986 we start seeing what I would call the first 'proper' Transformers toys - Hot Rod, Galvatron, Blurr, Kupp, Scourge, Cyclonus, Gnaw, Wreck-Gar. They were bigger than their Diaclone cousins and arguably less detailed and in many cases less 'involved' when it came to transformation. However - these toys looked much more like their show counter-parts and were generally more robust.

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Transformers G1 1986 Galvatron Gallery

We also saw the introduction of the (cancelled Diaclone) figures that made up the scramble combiners alongside Metroplex, Typticon and Predaking. With Metroplex being the first titan-class figure to be released and Trypticon being the first fan-voted titan-class figure - to me it speaks volumes about how loved 1986 really was. Aside from the usual Prime, Megs, 'Scream - characters like Predaking, Hotrod, Galvatron are often among the first called out for with excitement when a new line starts.

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Transformers G1 1986 Predaking (Reissue) Gallery

City-bots, Combiners and Trailer-Armour - the gimmicks had come full-force, but it wasn't until 87's ~Masters lines that we would go into full wack-out territory.

Aside from the toys - we had Transformers: The Movie and Season3 out which introduced lots of our favorite (or not so favorite) recurring themes - The Matrix, Optimus-Prime-Must-Die, Megatron transforms into Galvatron, Unicron and Optimus-Must-Live-Again (as the season finale). Fint Dille had created a monster which Simon Furman and every other Transformers writer was going to run with for the next 3 decades - with varying levels of success.

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"I'll be back after a 28 episode commercial break, guys"

To summarize - 1986 is the year Hasbro and Takara finally gives us a line that isn't simply a reboxing of other toys and branches out new. Transformers itself was transformed and strong themes were developed that would be retold series across series. To me G1 starts its gradual decline from this point - making it the high point of the 80s, even if arguably being the root cause of its decline. - Amelie


1. 2010

2010 is definitely the year I would pick to show the true hayday of the brand because it is the apex of value and quality. 86 is a fun year but it is a start while I would link a heyday to a summit. People unknowing of all these toys would find a certain charm to the 86 toys but any wow factor would be coming from 2010 or the years surrounding that (from 2006 to then). What I mean is that while the toys from 86 are in this time capsule, and wanted for rarity and nostalgia, toys from 2010 are wanted for the amount of toy you are getting. The engineering, the design. Design is a big deal here. While the G1 toys had a problem recreating what you saw on the screen, 2010 has so far not been beaten, when you look at the Human Alliance Line and the Leader Starscream figure we got. There has never ever been (and sadly never will be) a better toy for your money than that literally Masterpiece level leader sized figure. Compare it to what toys are costing today and you had this advanced figure, with electronics and all, for $40 US MSRP. That will never happen again.

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Transformers Hunt For The Decepticons Starscream Gallery

But it is not just movie toys, 2010 also has 2 very specific series all about design innovation: Reveal the Shield and Animated. That year gave us Reveal the Shield Jazz and Wreck Gar, two toys which have the best deluxe engineering ever seen, giving you a phenomenal toy that leaps off the G1 screen but without needing to dish out the money for a Masterpiece. There was also RTS Lugnut which is the apex of the entire Transformers line in its originality. Both in its origins (bringing an animated toy to a Classics line, merging both aesthetics perfectly) and in it's engineering, by having his wings become his arms. That reduces his plane kibble significantly and unlike almost all planes, he has a super smooth undercarriage with minimal robot kibble, and everything is stored neatly.

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Transformers Reveal The Shield Lugnut Gallery

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Transformers Reveal The Shield Lugnut Gallery

We also got the best animated toys of the entire line that year. Firstly, Takara finally had their crack at them and gave them some awesome decos and fixed the qc errors that plagued a bunch. Paint and quality control was the only problem with that line and Takara fixed it, leaving us with nothing else to do but to enjoy the beauty of these well engineered toys. I believe, the animated line has the best designs ever done for a tf toyline, it's insane they were able to replicate a radical style into a toyline and make them fully transformable. But regardless of takara's take (which wasnt always the best), we got Cybertron Ratchet/Ironhide, Arcee and Rodimus, which are 3 of the best designs ever. These are all small masterpieces in their own right, leaping from the screen with some amazing cycbertronian designs. That Rodimus is to this day still the best Rodimus toy out there and handles his kibble better than any other version.

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Transformers Animated Arcee Gallery

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Transformers Animated Rodimus Minor (Rodimus) Gallery

So yeah, we get the apex of the 3 most distinctive TF styles, Movie, Classics and Animated with the best quality and engineering ever seen for toys of that price point, from the beginning to today. And that's not even looking at the wider Transformers landscape which included Last Stand of the Wreckers, War for Cybertron, and the first five episodes of Prime. - William-james88


Honourable mentions: This honourable mention comes to us from Scotty P

2006. No debate here for me, just a quick and easy answer: 2006.

G1 was celebrated:
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Transformers Classics Optimus Prime (Convoy) Gallery

That amazing Botcon set:
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Transformers Convention & Club Exclusives Cheetor Gallery

And Beast Wars kept on by turning 10 in style:
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Transformers Beast Wars (10th Anniversary) Dinobot (Reissue) Gallery

We got our first Masterpiece seeker:
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Transformers Masterpiece Starscream (MP-03) Gallery

Cybertron finished up its run in really cool fashion with some massive (in size and fun-factor) toys to go along with the second half of the show:
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Transformers Cybertron Menasor (Moledive) Gallery

Plus there was Beast Machines finally on DVD, Kiss Players, IDW coming into its own with Spotlights and Stormbringer - for me, it was a great, less hectic time to be a fan.
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Re: Top 5 Best Years of the Transformers Brand / Franchise

Postby JazZeke » Sun Jan 01, 2017 11:41 pm

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This must have been a hard one to do, narrow down the best of 32 years... but the 30th anniversary line was also mighty impressive and pretty exciting.
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Re: Top 5 Best Years of the Transformers Brand / Franchise

Postby kurthy » Mon Jan 02, 2017 12:43 am

Motto: "Illumination through acceleration!"
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Plus there was Beast Machines finally on DVD, Kiss Players, IDW coming into its own with Spotlights and Stormbringer - for me, it was a great, less hectic time to be a fan.


Hmmm...good reasons to drop it to number 6.
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Re: Top 5 Best Years of the Transformers Brand / Franchise

Postby Gingko » Mon Jan 02, 2017 4:16 am

My favorite is the beast wars line. Mostly because I'had discovered the transformers-verse with this show. The very first toy I bought on my own was Razorbeast.

But also, the anime was great, maybe the greatest with Transformers prime. One of the first show with computer generated characters.

And speaking of it, 2010 totaly deserve the first place. With Transformers Pirme We had such amazing toy. StarScream, Vehicon, Arcee, Bulkhead...
+ the animated line
+ War of cybertron
+ movies... What else ?!
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Re: Top 5 Best Years of the Transformers Brand / Franchise

Postby griftimus prime » Mon Jan 02, 2017 6:52 am

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Weapon: 16 Cannons
beast wars did not start out with a great story. it was pretty bad actually. and not even cannon at the time to the g1 show.
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Re: Top 5 Best Years of the Transformers Brand / Franchise

Postby Rodimus Prime » Mon Jan 02, 2017 6:54 am

5. 2001 - Transformers returns to cartoon form with RiD/Car Robots
4. 2007 - the 1st live action movie, reigniting both the fandom and Hasbro's design budget, leading to better toys
3. 1996 - Beast Wars. 'Nuff said
2. 1986 - Rodimus Prime, Unicron and Galvatron
1. 1984 - September: Marvel Transformers Comics #1 drops. Biggest. TF moment. Ever.

Honorable mention: 2003 - Armada becomes a favorite for me, with a good series, good comic, and great toys.
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Re: Top 5 Best Years of the Transformers Brand / Franchise

Postby JazZeke » Mon Jan 02, 2017 8:17 am

Motto: "Every dark cloud may have a silver lining, but every gingerbread house has a witch inside."
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Gingko wrote:But also, the anime was great, maybe the greatest with Transformers prime. One of the first show with computer generated characters.

Beast Wars was very definitely not anime.
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Re: Top 5 Best Years of the Transformers Brand / Franchise

Postby Gingko » Mon Jan 02, 2017 8:46 am

JazZeke wrote:
Gingko wrote:But also, the anime was great, maybe the greatest with Transformers prime. One of the first show with computer generated characters.

Beast Wars was very definitely not anime.


Sorry, it may be a problem of vocabulary (English is not my first language). I call "anime", anything that is not with actual actor. Because draw or computer generated, it is animated one way or another.

So what the good word ?
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Re: Top 5 Best Years of the Transformers Brand / Franchise

Postby JazZeke » Mon Jan 02, 2017 9:17 am

Motto: "Every dark cloud may have a silver lining, but every gingerbread house has a witch inside."
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Gingko wrote:
JazZeke wrote:
Gingko wrote:But also, the anime was great, maybe the greatest with Transformers prime. One of the first show with computer generated characters.

Beast Wars was very definitely not anime.


Sorry, it may be a problem of vocabulary (English is not my first language). I call "anime", anything that is not with actual actor. Because draw or computer generated, it is animated one way or another.

So what the good word ?

"Cartoon" or "animated series." "Anime" is specifically for Japanese animation.
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Re: Top 5 Best Years of the Transformers Brand / Franchise

Postby RAR » Mon Jan 02, 2017 10:04 am

My list...

1997 - Transmetals
2005 - Binaltech
1987 - Headmasters
2003 - Armada (for the Minicons)
2012 - Transformers Prime

[I also really like the 2009/2010 Revenge of the Fallen / HFTD toylines too... "Don't hate me" ]
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Re: Top 5 Best Years of the Transformers Brand / Franchise

Postby william-james88 » Mon Jan 02, 2017 10:35 am

RAR wrote:My list...

1997 - Transmetals
2005 - Binaltech
1987 - Headmasters
2003 - Armada (for the Minicons)
2012 - Transformers Prime

[I also really like the 2009/2010 Revenge of the Fallen / HFTD toylines too... "Don't hate me" ]

It would be hard to hate you, I put 2010 as my number one.
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Re: Top 5 Best Years of the Transformers Brand / Franchise

Postby Gingko » Mon Jan 02, 2017 11:02 am

JazZeke wrote:"Cartoon" or "animated series." "Anime" is specifically for Japanese animation.


OK thanks. But just for the joke :

Beast Wars II anime : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LoQ8P-T2l7Y XD

We did not had this in France, well we did not even had Beast Machine ! I've seen Beast Machine on web, but not Beast Wars II, did I miss something ?
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Re: Top 5 Best Years of the Transformers Brand / Franchise

Postby fenrir72 » Mon Jan 02, 2017 11:04 am

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Lugnut! Another underappreciated mold! I own the Takara version and he does not disappoint (aside from the somewhat floppy thighs) due deja vu TL Skull. Maybe the joints could not support its body weight? Which was beefy and not hollow. Takara should have had ratchets on those thighs just like Straxus.

And of all the indignities, Lugnut was relegated to a wall flower character by IDW. :(
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Re: Top 5 Best Years of the Transformers Brand / Franchise

Postby Ironhidensh » Mon Jan 02, 2017 11:19 am

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Weapon: Big Cannon
As someone who has become a primarily masterpiece collector, I would place 2016 at maybe the #1 spot.

Not only were there some great official figures (Ironhide and Primal), but the 3rd party market has shown tremendous and amazing growth over the last year as well.

Between the 2 marjets, you can now have a damn near complete '84 - '85 autobot and deception lineup in the masterpiece scale. For me, as much as I bitch and moan with my "get off my lawn" comments toward the main line, it really is a great time to be a fan and/or collector.
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Re: Top 5 Best Years of the Transformers Brand / Franchise

Postby william-james88 » Mon Jan 02, 2017 11:56 am

Gingko wrote:
JazZeke wrote:"Cartoon" or "animated series." "Anime" is specifically for Japanese animation.


OK thanks. But just for the joke :

Beast Wars II anime : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LoQ8P-T2l7Y XD

We did not had this in France, well we did not even had Beast Machine ! I've seen Beast Machine on web, but not Beast Wars II, did I miss something ?

Only Japan had Beast Wars II and Beast Wars Neo (which are indeed both Anime, since they are Japanese animated shows).
North America had Beast Wars and Beast Machines as the direct sequel, you don't miss anything in their story by just watching those since they were made without the Japanese cartoons in mind.
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Re: Top 5 Best Years of the Transformers Brand / Franchise

Postby ArmadaPrime » Mon Jan 02, 2017 1:24 pm

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This was a really interesting read! Being a (comparatively!) newer member of the fandom than some, it's very cool to see what events had a major impact at the time that I wouldn't otherwise think of- to me, it's all just part of "TF history".

I'd be interested though, Will, to know if you've got a list focused on the engineering? It's often one of my favourite aspects of the toys so I was intrigued when you said:
william-james88 wrote:That year gave us Reveal the Shield Jazz and Wreck Gar, two toys which have the best deluxe engineering ever seen

Personally, I didn't feel like either of these figures were anything special. Jazz was very nice, and perhaps one of the "cleanest" interpretations of the standard car-former recipe, but didn't blow me away- whilst Wreck-Gar was too plagued by weak plastic (in the hands and the handlebar clips) and a fiddly transformation to live up to its admittedly quite impressive design.
I'm sure to some extent it's a case of different strokes, different folks, but I'd be curious to see your take on it!
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Re: Top 5 Best Years of the Transformers Brand / Franchise

Postby JazZeke » Mon Jan 02, 2017 1:45 pm

Motto: "Every dark cloud may have a silver lining, but every gingerbread house has a witch inside."
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ArmadaPrime wrote:Personally, I didn't feel like either of these figures were anything special. Jazz was very nice, and perhaps one of the "cleanest" interpretations of the standard car-former recipe, but didn't blow me away- whilst Wreck-Gar was too plagued by weak plastic (in the hands and the handlebar clips) and a fiddly transformation to live up to its admittedly quite impressive design.
I'm sure to some extent it's a case of different strokes, different folks, but I'd be curious to see your take on it!

The Jazz mold is one of those cases of "so good it's boring." Like when something has no problems and does its job so well that you barely notice it.
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Re: Top 5 Best Years of the Transformers Brand / Franchise

Postby william-james88 » Mon Jan 02, 2017 1:49 pm

ArmadaPrime wrote:I'd be interested though, Will, to know if you've got a list focused on the engineering? It's often one of my favourite aspects of the toys so I was intrigued when you said:
william-james88 wrote:That year gave us Reveal the Shield Jazz and Wreck Gar, two toys which have the best deluxe engineering ever seen

Personally, I didn't feel like either of these figures were anything special. Jazz was very nice, and perhaps one of the "cleanest" interpretations of the standard car-former recipe, but didn't blow me away- whilst Wreck-Gar was too plagued by weak plastic (in the hands and the handlebar clips) and a fiddly transformation to live up to its admittedly quite impressive design.
I'm sure to some extent it's a case of different strokes, different folks, but I'd be curious to see your take on it!

Your right, those words might be too strong. I changed them just to keep consistency within my lists. You see, I has 2 years worth of lists written and my thoughts and ideas change. Not much, but enough for what I feel to be ideal to change. Like I now value ease of transformation. Not thats its a simple transformation, but rather that it isnt frustrating. Hence why I preffer movie Leader Starscream over Leader ROTF Optimus or Sentinel Prime. Anyways, just to say that I agree with you 100% and while Wreck Gar is still, to me, a toy that has great engineering, him being fiddly and easy to break does make him go down a bit. I still feel he should be experienced though and I love his robot mode.

I dont have a list yet for the best engineering but I am working on a list that would have more or less the same things. I am calling it the "top 5 most flawless toys outside he MP line" and engineering is a big part of it. There are definitely 2010 toys on that list, like Animated Hot Rod ;) But I wont give the rest away. Thanks for the kind words and interest and I am glad you liked the list!
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Re: Top 5 Best Years of the Transformers Brand / Franchise

Postby william-james88 » Mon Jan 02, 2017 1:51 pm

JazZeke wrote:The Jazz mold is one of those cases of "so good it's boring." Like when something has no problems and does its job so well that you barely notice it.

I always felt Prime Soundwave was the same way.
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Re: Top 5 Best Years of the Transformers Brand / Franchise

Postby ArmadaPrime » Mon Jan 02, 2017 2:04 pm

Motto: "Today's tomorrow is tomorrows today."
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william-james88 wrote:
ArmadaPrime wrote:I'd be interested though, Will, to know if you've got a list focused on the engineering? It's often one of my favourite aspects of the toys so I was intrigued when you said:
william-james88 wrote:That year gave us Reveal the Shield Jazz and Wreck Gar, two toys which have the best deluxe engineering ever seen

Personally, I didn't feel like either of these figures were anything special. Jazz was very nice, and perhaps one of the "cleanest" interpretations of the standard car-former recipe, but didn't blow me away- whilst Wreck-Gar was too plagued by weak plastic (in the hands and the handlebar clips) and a fiddly transformation to live up to its admittedly quite impressive design.
I'm sure to some extent it's a case of different strokes, different folks, but I'd be curious to see your take on it!

Your right, those words might be too strong. I changed them just to keep consistency within my lists. You see, I has 2 years worth of lists written and my thoughts and ideas change. Not much, but enough for what I feel to be ideal to change. Like I now value ease of transformation. Not thats its a simple transformation, but rather that it isnt frustrating. Hence why I preffer movie Leader Starscream over Leader ROTF Optimus or Sentinel Prime. Anyways, just to say that I agree with you 100% and while Wreck Gar is still, to me, a toy that has great engineering, him being fiddly and easy to break does make him go down a bit. I still feel he should be experienced though and I love his robot mode.

I dont have a list yet for the best engineering but I am working on a list that would have more or less the same things. I am calling it the "top 5 most flawless toys outside he MP line" and engineering is a big part of it. There are definitely 2010 toys on that list, like Animated Hot Rod ;) But I wont give the rest away. Thanks for the kind words and interest and I am glad you liked the list!

Some good points made! I definitely agree with you on the concept of ease of transformation- your two lists last year on complex and annoying transformations were quite fun!
For me it's all about how much I enjoy a transformation, which is quite a hard thing to measure. For a couple of random examples, RTS Perceptor has a very good transformation with some interesting tricks, but I very rarely transform him as the arms in particular can be quite fiddly. TFP Ratchet has some tricks of his own, and can also get a bit awkward if things aren't lined up quite right, but is one of those transformations I want to do again and again every time I pick him up.
I'm not quite sure what it is that can make one transformation satisfying and another irritating, but it's something I find fascinating nonetheless.
Anyway, that sounds a very cool list (and probably quite a difficult one to narrow down), so I'll be looking forward to it!
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Re: Top 5 Best Years of the Transformers Brand / Franchise

Postby Megatron Wolf » Mon Jan 02, 2017 2:19 pm

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I have to disagree with some of that, 2016 was not a good year distribution was a total train wreck, there was the wave 2 shortage that screwed over a lot of people and entire RiD & combiner waves were never seen, and lets not forget the fact that the prices went up yet again and quality went down yet again. Id say 2016 was not such a great year. Remember we were paying $15 for a great figure and a comic now we're paying $17-$20 for just a figure with less paint apps and hit or miss quality, if you can even find them. 2006 should replace 2016, not only did we get some amazing toys but the quality was still high and prices were still low, you could find what you were looking for and hasbro seemed to actually care about the entire franchise. Just look at what you listed happened in 2006, g1 fans were happy, beast war fans were happy, unicron trilogy fans were happy, the fandom was happy, seems like a great year from my perspective.
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Re: Top 5 Best Years of the Transformers Brand / Franchise

Postby RAR » Mon Jan 02, 2017 2:53 pm

Next time Hasbro get all crazy with the budget cuts the fandom may look back at 2016 as a stella year - sure the repaints got out of control is Combiner Wars but they seems a bit more retrained in TR (bar the odd titan-master exception).

Heck there is some toys I'd like to see repainted - Wolf wire as Dark Fang Wolf would be nice for a start.
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Re: Top 5 Best Years of the Transformers Brand / Franchise

Postby shajaki » Mon Jan 02, 2017 3:33 pm

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Very awesome list, and awesome idea for a list!
My thoughts:

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This list really made me think about this year, and last, ect. And yeah, 2016 was phenomenal. Number 5 here is completely toy related (unlike the rest of my list) which says a lot. Hotrod, which is one of my favorite characters, got TWO new toys, and they're BOTH amazing. They were both a surprise and a dream come true. We were also given some amazing combiners from UW and Funpub. Not to mention Primal: one of the best MP's to date and the exciting start to BW characters getting the MP treatment.

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Nostalgia goes a long way, and I based my top 5 on moments in TF (whether it be in fiction or with toys) that gave me "the feels". And more importantly, still give me the feels. And probably the earliest moment for me was watching "Heavy Metal War" with Devastator combining for the first time and squaring off against the Dinobots. Op and Megs 1 on 1 was also pretty great.

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From a collectors standpoint, this was an incredibly important moment. Long before being put under a worldwide spotlight with a billion dollar movie franchise, our community was recognized and given a high end adult oriented line. It took a while for it to find its stride, but its roots should be celebrated.

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Kinda the same feeling I get from watching "Heavy Metal War", only times 10. New characters that I loved, and stunning animation. 'Nuff said.

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I thought, Beast Wars. But I had to narrow it down. The revelation at the end of Season 2 is high up there. The death of Dinobot obviously. But what really gave me goosebumps was when Transmetal 2 Dinobot jumped out of that cloning contraption. He looked amazing and terrifying, and kicked some major ass. Getting the toy was also one of the most gratifying acquisitions I ever had.

Also the only reason Beast Machines isn't up here, is because it was also in '99. Otherwise it would have been #2 and bumping 2016 into an honorable mention.
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Re: Top 5 Best Years of the Transformers Brand / Franchise

Postby thesiege_2005 » Mon Jan 02, 2017 3:39 pm

I am surprised nobody mentioned 1985. To me that was the year Transformers became big. There may have been one kid with a Transformer in my school in 1984 when they first came out, but 1985 is the year we all had to have one (or more!). The show went into full syndication, the toys kept coming (Omega Supreme! Jetfire! Shockwave! Perceptor! Triple Changers!) and nothing was stale yet.

1986 was just as big a year, but that's when the toyline seemed to get worse. The movie toys, as much as I love them now, was a departure from the Diaclone/Microman stuff we were used to and we could tell something was off (without fully understanding why). The movie killed off our heroes to make room for new ones, but I remember a lot of my friends were just pissed that the new Autobot leader was some punk kid character they hadn't heard of beforehand. Also some kids didn't see the movie, and all of a sudden the TV show changed settings and characters and many in the audience were lost. The TV show animation was initially worse (FFOD!) and the show didn't seem as "fun". TMNT was on the horizon in 1987 and I know a lot of kids just got bored with the Transformers concept at that point (not me though!).

Again 1986 was a big year for TF, but to me it would not have been as big of a year if 1985 did not exist. 1985 was really THE year for G1 for the mainstream world.

I don't understand 2010. I guess there was some good stuff that came out that year for collectors, but in terms of mainstream success I would think 2007 when the first Bay movie came out would have topped that. Plus it first gave us mainstream figures that were modern redesigns of classic characters (Classics/CHUG/CHUGGUR).

I'd be curious to look at the numbers for licensing. I would think 1985 and 2007 were the years the most licensed non-toy products bearing the name Transformers existed, but I admit I'm just guessing.
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Re: Top 5 Best Years of the Transformers Brand / Franchise

Postby ScottyP » Mon Jan 02, 2017 3:59 pm

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2010, eh? That's a perspective I couldn't disagree with more on a personal level, but your reasons are solid and to each their own, etc. What I remember of 2010 was start-and-stop, unfocused lines of product that had shelf-warming all-stars like Battle Hooks Leader Optimus or whatever and just about all of the PCC guys which were a major letdown outside of the torsos and individual scout/mini-con sets. The Generations releases were nice but hardly a focus at the time. Maybe it's me, but I remember that year as not bad but certainly far, far removed from best year ever.
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