Thanks to a heads up from Seibertronian sabrblade, we have news that the winners of the 2019 Hall of Fame fan vote have been announced!
The winner this year for the new character induction is the purple and black seeker himself, Skywarp! Skywarp originated from the first wave of the 1984 toyline, cartoon, and comics, and many fell in love with his teleporting capabilities. And it would seem that his teleporting abilities finally got him into the hall of fame.
And the winner of this year's toy induction is the Titan himself, Omega Supreme! Omega has been on the market now for around 2 months, and has proven to be a very popular Titan, with many considering him to be the best Titan we have gotten so far. This titanic monosyllabic character made his way into our hearts, and how so has his toy.
So what do you think of these results? Was this the result you had hoped for? Let us know what you think in the comments section below!
Here's the word from Hasbro on Unicron: "UNICRON stands alone as the most menacing figure in TRANSFORMERS lore, capable of devouring entire worlds and civilizations. He debuted in the 1986 film Transformers: The Movie and his insatiable appetite nearly brought the entire universe to its knees. But his legacy transcends both space and time.
The gigantic UNICRON would be the largest TRANSFORMERS figure ever created, taking the title from the previous record-holder, FORTRESS MAXIMUS. Artists and designers from Takara Tomy and Hasbro are working to capture the intricate details and features of the relentless Chaos Bringer to make this the most accurate UNICRON fans have ever seen.
In his immense robot mode, this version of UNICRON is over 27” tall and has more than 50 points of articulation. Includes fine pose-ability, such as movable eyes, fingers, mouth, and even teeth. He converts into a terrifying planet mode that is a stunning 30” in diameter. The planet mode features the iconic planet-eating jaws, geared to open so UNICRON can devour unassuming worlds. The planet mode also features a series of posable planetary rings. Comes with a stand for posing both planet & robot mode."
Unicron is on his way to our planet as we speak Seibertronians! Only the combined power of our fandom united can convert this planetary threat into a child sized toy ready to dominate our collections. Till all are one!
If you haven't backed this project yet there's still time but not much - just click HERE to head to Hasbro Pulse and put in your order for Unicron today! If Unicron does not meet the 8,000 backers needed HE WILL NOT BE MADE!
Enjoy the view and as always stay tuned to Seibertron for the ultimate in Transformers news!
Mere days after the previous news of the sudden passing of voice actor Michael Lindsay comes the unfortunate news of voice actor Robert Axelrod having passed away yesterday, September 7, 2019, at the age of 70. This news comes to us from Facebook of Mobile Monicker Productions, who represented Axelrod for his many convention appearances. Axelrod is best known for having provided the voices of Lord Zedd, Finster, and other monsters on Power Rangers, as well as several English dub anime voice roles, such as Wizardmon, Vademon, Armadillomon, Ankylomon, and Shakkoumon (w/ Dave Mallow) on Digimon, and Rico on Robotech. He also voiced Marvel Comics character Microchip in the Punisher episodes of Spider-Man: The Animated Series, and appeared in live action on an episode of Family Matters where he played a Paul McCartney lookalike.
For Transformers, he was the voice of Movor in the 2001 Transformers: Robots in Disguise cartoon. One of the Decepticon Commandos, Movor was the space shuttle member who could form an arm or leg for the combiner Ruination. He was also one of the very few Commandos to star in his own spotlight episode, "Attack from Outer Space", which had the misfortune of being one of the three episodes that was banned from ever airing on TV in the United States due to sensitivities from the September 11 attacks in 2001.
Rest in peace, Mr. Axelrod. Your performances were a treasure to behold.
Thanks to Seibertron's TF-fan kev777, we learnt of a post by Hasbro where they explained in great detail the story behind the military insignias on the Transformers Siege packaging. You can read it fully below!
THE STORY BEHIND THE TRANSFORMERS WFC MILITARY INSIGNIAS: REVEALED
There's more to the War for Cybertron: Siege line than the amazing figures. There's also the three-dimensional characters these figures represent, each with their own backstories and roles to play. One way we tell these stories is through a character's military ranking, represented by a military insignia unique to the character. Have you figured out the ranking system yet?
Yeah. We see you. We keep up on the comments sections of this and other fan sites. We know a lot of you didn't necessarily need this key, but as we were developing this system, we sure did. It was an important tool for organizing the system and giving all of us working on the project the guidelines needed to build an insignia for any character. It was actually all a bit of a process, and we thought it would be fun to tell you a bit about that process.
Where Did We Start ?
It started with a thought: In times of war, armies establish a clear chain of command, and the Autobots and Decepticons would be no different. Despite the chaos of brutal battles, some sort of organization would be established. They would need a way to indicate who's in charge. Sure, as such a key figure, everyone would know Optimus Prime is the General of the Autobot army, but where does Ironhide rank? Does he outrank Prowl? Would Starscream be Megatron's second-in-command during the war? Or would that come later? And what kind of role would they all play within their armies?
STARSCREAM: Still working his way up the ranks until he ultimately ascends to leader of the Decepticons…or tries to, anyway.
And then a bunch of us got in a room and geeked-out together about how this all would work. What could we create to deepen the story for fans? And how could we convey key pieces of a character's story through a single graphic? The answer was a military insignia that represented 3 things: Division, Unit, and Rank. But when determining these classifications for each character there were a few things we had to consider.
Assigning rankings to soldiers in the war for Cybertron: 3 key things we had to consider
First, these aren’t the Autobots and Decepticons we know. Their insignias needed to represent these characters during the War for Cybertron, long before becoming the larger-than-life heroes and villains we know them to be today. We had to think about where these characters are at the beginning of this chapter. War changes people robots. The Division, Unit, and Rank for some of these characters would be drastically different and not necessarily reflect who they will eventually become. There are characters that haven’t quite yet established themselves or haven’t yet moved into a field they will enter later. And so, all of that needed to be seeded in their insignias.
Believe it or not his overly cautious nature and dedication to safety makes him an effective medic in the War for Cybertron, though he does tend to over-diagnose patients. Just to be safe.
Second, what are the divisions and units that would naturally form during a raging civil war on an alien planet populated by giant converting robots? We had to take into account the nature of this particular war and the means with which our characters are fighting it. And at the same time we needed to think about who these characters are, their various alt modes, what their strengths and expertise are at this moment in time.
Third, how might the Autobots and Decepticons name these classifications differently? Would the Decepticons classifications sound a bit more sinister? Would they call a unit Black Ops where the Autobots would call it Special Ops? And, what would be the same regardless of faction?
When considering Engineering as an army unit, it worked well for the Autobots, but it didn't quite fit for the Decepticons. We pictured Shockwave in his lab, his one eye glowing with menacing genius, creating brutal, highly potent, and twisted weapons for the Decepticon army. Then thought, nope, that's not Engineering, that's Applied Sciences, a much more ambiguously ominous name you’d find within a military industrial complex like the one operated by the Decepticons.
Engineering VS. Applied Sciences
Designing Cybertronian Military Insignias: Considerations and Challenges
Naming conventions alone were not enough to show how the Autobots and Decepticons would approach military rankings differently, we needed to do so graphically, as well. Not only did we want the Decepticon graphics to look a little more threatening, we also wanted them to look more militarized. Most of the Decepticons originate from the military and defense forces of Cybertron, while the Autobots originate from the labor forces and civilian population. We knew we wanted the iconography to be reflective of that history.
You can see how the negative space within the Decepticon graphics is tighter and the angles are sharper, creating more intricate designs and a sense that you don't want to mess with these guys. The Autobot graphics are blockier with softer edges and angles. This, along with a more open use of the negative space evokes a greater sense of approachability and a certain gritty scrappiness when compared to the Decepticon graphics.
Fun fact: We didn’t initially design the insignias to be specifically Autobot or Decepticon. We started with a bunch of sketches of what Cybertronian military insignias could look like. Then we chose our top 2. From there we decided which felt more Autobot and which felt more Decepticon. Once we determined that, we were able to evolve the designs to emphasize the differences between the two factions.
Early sketches. Here are concept options 7 and 9 that would then become the basis for the Autobot and Decepticon insignias
One of the biggest challenges when designing these was how to symbolically convey through iconography to our human fans what the pieces of these Cybertronian military insignias represent without them looking at all human. Our first tries looked very human. It took some time, but eventually we were able to identify symbols that suggest meaning humans can understand, but look and feel like they were developed on the planet Cybertron by warring alien robot armies. We tried to focus on universal (in the most literal sense of the word) symbols, so things like weaponry and spaceship icons were fair game.
Here are some earlier insignia concepts before they were finalized. Not our human-looking outtakes, but you can see how certain elements changed and evolved before we landed on final designs.
Another challenge was how do we make this system infinite? We needed to establish these pieces of the puzzle in a way that could be built on and expanded as the world expands. A modular system where every piece needed to be interchangeable and our representations of those pieces needed to be easily built upon and adapted.
Look at Rank, for example. The lowest rank is represented by the simplest design, then becomes more complex for higher ranks. Initially, we didn’t have the Specialist rank, it was added after we had already established the system. Because of the modular nature of the system, it was easier to adapt and repurpose graphic elements used in other ranks in a way that would represent the new Specialist rank according to the rules we established.
What it all came down to
Ultimately, every decision we made came down to what felt right. If it felt true to the story, true to the character, true to the tone, true to everything we know about Transformers -- then that's what it had to be. And we loved every minute of it. It was so fun to go in and really geek-out. We hope you enjoyed it, too.
BLUEFIN OPENS PRE-ORDERS FOR NEW TRANSFORMERS FURAI MODEL KITS FROM
Leading Collectibles Distributor Details Two New Kits Based On Characters From IDW’s TRANSFORMERS Comic Book Series; Skywarp And Drift Set For December Retail Release
Anaheim, CA, August 22, 2019 – BANDAI NAMCO Collectibles (dba: Bluefin), a BANDAI NAMCO Group company and the leading North American distributor of toys, collectibles, and hobby merchandise from Japan and Asia, expands its product catalog for Fame Toys as it opens pre-orders for a pair of new Transformers Furai model kits.
Based on IDW’s Transformers acclaimed comic series, Flame Toys’ officially licensed releases of the Skywarp Furai model kit and Drift Furai model kit each deliver an eye-catching new addition to the personal collection of any ardent Transformers fan. Both kits (non-transforming) feature easy snap-together assembly and are rendered in ABS and PS plastic, which can be easily custom painted.
Skywarp and Drift are set for retail release in December and will be available from authorized Bluefin retailers nationwide and also from select leading online outlets. Bluefin is the official North American master distributor for Flame Toys.
Flame Toys Skywarp Furai Model Kit · MSRP $38.00 · Available December 2019
The 9th Transformers FURAI MODEL kits presents Skywarp. Standing 6 inches tall, this modernized depiction of the Decepticon Seeker features realistic articulation with over 50 movable joints. The kit is made of hard plastic ABS & PS, which makes it ideal for expert builders to add their own custom paint. With different injection colors of runner parts and simple assembly design, this is also a kit that is great for beginners and experts alike.
Flame Toys Drift Furai Model Kit · MSRP $50.00 · Available December 2019
The long-awaited 10th FURAI MODEL arrives with the release of Drift. Standing 6.1 inches, this new and excited model depicts the Autobot Drift as he is seen in the beloved IDW Transformers comic book series. Drift features over 50 points of articulation and can assume any pose with ease. The model is constructed from ABS and PS plastic which can be easily custom painted. The joints are rendered in soft plastic for stable, movable performance. Model parts come color molded so no painting is required making this model kit ideal for beginners and experts alike.
BLUEFIN is a leading master and channel distributor of Japanese toys, collectibles, novelty and hobby products. The company’s extensive product line features a diverse and continually expanding catalog of high quality and popular collectibles from Asia. As a BANDAI NAMCO Group company, BLUEFIN distributes products in the U.S. for BANDAI / BANDAI SPIRITS Tamashii Nations, Hobby and Shokugan. The company’s array of brand offerings also includes products from Storm Collectibles, Mr. Hobby/GSI, SEN-TI-NEL and Flame Toys, for which the company is the North American exclusive distributor. BLUEFIN is also the official North American consumer products and retail development partner for Studio Ghibli. Additional company information is available at: https://bluefinbrands.com/
Hasbro will begin phasing out plastic from their packaging beginning in 2020. That includes polybags, elastic bands, shrink wrap, window sheets and blister packs, all to be phased out from new product releases by 2022. At the top of the press release it mentions products such as Nerf, My Little Pony, Monopoly, Magic: The Gathering, and Power Rangers, but does not state Transformers. This appears to be just a cursory listing of their products and does not specifically exclude Transformers.
Here's the press release from Hasbro - it's important to note at the end that we know with 100% certainty that this TerraCycle project does involve Transformers toys so these changes will be seen in our fandom at some point. TerraCyle recycles all forms of toys for reuse in various ways as described in the press release excerpt listed below.
From the press release:
"Reimagining and redesigning packaging across our brand portfolio is a complex undertaking, but we believe it’s important and our teams are up for the challenge,” said John Frascotti, President and Chief Operating Officer, Hasbro. “We know consumers share our commitment to protecting the environment, and we want families to feel good knowing that our packaging will be virtually plastic-free, and our products can be easily recycled through our Toy Recycling Program with TerraCycle*.”
Hasbro’s Toy Recycling Program enables consumers to send well-loved Hasbro toys and games to TerraCycle, a global leader in product recycling, who will recycle them into materials to be used in the construction of play spaces, flowerpots, park benches, and other innovative uses. Hasbro recently announced the expansion of the program to France, Germany and Brazil, and plans to expand the program to additional markets with the goal of ensuring all Hasbro toys and games are recyclable in the major markets where it does business."
Read the full press release below.
"Beginning in 2020, Hasbro will begin phasing out plastic from new toy and game packaging across its portfolio of iconic brands like NERF, MY LITTLE PONY, MONOPOLY, MAGIC: THE GATHERING and POWER RANGERS
PAWTUCKET, R.I.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Aug. 20, 2019-- Hasbro, Inc. (NASDAQ: HAS) announced today that, beginning in 2020, it plans to begin phasing out plastic from new product packaging, including plastic elements like polybags, elastic bands, shrink wrap, window sheets and blister packs. The company’s ambition is to eliminate virtually all plastic in packaging for new products by the end of 2022.
“Removing plastic from our packaging is the latest advancement in our more than decade-long journey to create a more sustainable future for our business and our world,” said Brian Goldner, Chairman and CEO, Hasbro. “We have an experienced, cross-functional team in place to manage the complexity of this undertaking and will look to actively engage employees, customers, and partners as we continue to innovate and drive progress as a leader in sustainability.”
Hasbro has a long-standing commitment to environmental sustainability, from eliminating wire ties in 2010 and adding How2Recycle® labeling in 2016, to the use of plant-based bioPET in 2018, and most recently, launching an industry-leading toy recycling program with TerraCycle®. Hasbro’s Sustainability Center of Excellence is charged with driving the integration of sustainability across the business, including driving sustainable packaging design principles.
“Reimagining and redesigning packaging across our brand portfolio is a complex undertaking, but we believe it’s important and our teams are up for the challenge,” said John Frascotti, President and Chief Operating Officer, Hasbro. “We know consumers share our commitment to protecting the environment, and we want families to feel good knowing that our packaging will be virtually plastic-free, and our products can be easily recycled through our Toy Recycling Program with TerraCycle*.”
Hasbro’s Toy Recycling Program enables consumers to send well-loved Hasbro toys and games to TerraCycle, a global leader in product recycling, who will recycle them into materials to be used in the construction of play spaces, flowerpots, park benches, and other innovative uses. Hasbro recently announced the expansion of the program to France, Germany and Brazil, and plans to expand the program to additional markets with the goal of ensuring all Hasbro toys and games are recyclable in the major markets where it does business.
To learn more about Hasbro's sustainability efforts, visit http://www.hasbro.com/csr and read our CSR Report, Playing with Purpose."
Just in from IGN is the latest reveal for the Transformers The Card Game, and it's a big one! That's right, ready to give Metroplex and his Metro-minions a run for their money is Trypticon and his henchmen Brunt, Full-Tilt, and even Wipe-Out! From IGN: "Every sealed, 30-pack booster display box of War for Cybertron: Seige II includes one Trypticon pack, inside of which you'll find the enormous Trypticon card and the "three large Character Cards" for Brunt, Full-Tilt and Wipe-Out. The booster packs come with one large and one small character card, as well as 6 battle cards.
In the Transformers Universe, Trypticon is the Decepticon answer to Metroplex, the gigantic Autobot city with his own, stand-alone oversized character card and set.
Transformers: TCG wave 4, featuring the Trypticon packs, will be available November 9 "in the US and certain other regions."
And this is from the official announcement from Hasbro:
"Today, Transformers TCG announced Wave 4 – which brings the mighty titan, TRYPTICON, to the fight!
For wave 4, each War for Cybertron: Siege II sealed Booster box includes 30 booster packs and a TRYPTICON pack. The TRYPTICON pack contains one Titan-sized TRYPTICON character card and 3 large character cards as his minions: BRUNT, FULL-TILT and WIPE-OUT!
Wave 4 will be available beginning November 8, 2019 in the US."
Are you ready to give your Autobot opponents a blow to their Metroplexis? Let us know what you think in the forums and as always stay tuned to Seibertron for the ultimate in Transformers news!
And this just in from our own #Sideways# is the new Trypticon Battle Card revealed on the TFTCG Facebook Page:
There's some rumblings on line and it's not from this Destitution Class behemoth trouncing around Cybertron's surface. Thanks to fellow Seibertronians D-Maximal Prime with help from Sabrblade we've learned the word is that Transformers (possibly Siege, possibly not despite those blast effect pegs on his big mug) Unicron is going to be available in Japan through the TakaraTomy Mall!
"Wonder Festival 2019 summer Takara Tomy Transformers booth information.
The Wonder Festival 2019 Summer Takara Tomy Transformers Booth, which will be held at Makuhari Messe on Sunday, July 28, 2019, will be full of content!
7/24 (Wed) Blue-ray & DVD will be released from the movie "Bumblebee" corner, The "Masterpiece Rio Convoy", which was announced at the toy show the other day, and became a topic, "Legacy TV-kun," We are planning to exhibit the contents of the group's crowdfunding program!
In addition, we will exhibit Hasbro's global crowdfunding program "HASLAB Uniclon" just announced!
In addition, we will exhibit the latest products of SS, SIEGE and Generation Select."
Global crowd funding you say? This would seem to indicate outside of North America. From further into the announcement which is also the translated text from the image above:
"Hasbro's global crowdfunding plan just announced It will be decided to sell "HASLAB UNICLON" in Japan at Takara Tomy Mall!
We plan to start bookings by the 1st festival day.
On this occasion, it was decided to decorate the prototype at the one-fest venue.
Please check the huge transformers of unmatched size in the past by yourself.
Thank you for your support of crowdfunding!"
And in an update just this morning from Snakasblog: "7/17 addition : According to the one fess announcement of TAKARATOMY TF official site, there seems to be handling at TAKARATOMY mall in Japan. I think that this sales method is also probably crowdfunding, but there is a statement with reservation start soon."
Now whether this is an opening for crowdfunding, or just a statement that if approved it will also be available in Japan (possibly elsewhere in the world too) is yet to be seen.
*Correction - To clarify this story Takara IS taking orders for this item just like Hasbro is.*
We provide the posts from these various translated sources and ask you to decide. Let us know in the forums and as always stay tuned to Seibertron for all the latest Transformers news!
You are never getting that G1 Jetfire reissue, ever. For those unaware, while almost everything to do with Transformers is owned by Hasbro/Takara Tomy, the designs for the Jetfire toy is not, nor is the use of that specific Macross design appearing in media. Outside of Japan, that design is owned by Harmony Gold, a media holding company that is dealing more with real estate at the moment.
They have sued Hasbro on occasion before all in relation to Hasbro (or Hasbro license holders) releasing Jetfire products. Their contract was going to be finished in 2021 so nobody knew what would happen after that. Well, now we do, thanks to an article by Den of Geek who posted the following announcement:
HOLLYWOOD, CA, July 5 – Harmony Gold USA, Inc. announced today that it has reached an agreement with the Japanese anime studio, Tatsunoko Productions, Co., to extend the worldwide, co-copyright ownership and exclusive management, excluding Japan, for its landmark anime series Robotech (including Macross, Southern Cross and Mospeada). This agreement was achieved after a lengthy negotiation and allows Harmony Gold to continue to exploit the animated Robotech franchise well into the future.
Tommy Yune, President of Animation at Harmony Gold, had the following to say:
“It’s an extension of all the current agreements [that were made public in 2017]. It’s a renewal but actually it’s an extension for lack of a better term. We renewed but we decided as part of our renewal to extend the agreement.”
“Harmony Gold and Tatsunko [have been] partners in this whole thing. For future product that we’re working on, the IP is going to be jointly shared by both companies.”
Frank Agrama, Chairman of Harmony Gold added, "Over the past 35 years we have been blessed to work with our friends at Tatsunoko on developing one the world’s greatest entertainment franchises. With our extension we look forward to the next 35 years of working with Tatsunoko and world class business partners on Robotech.”
Since Harmony Gold has solidified their claim to the Robotech/Macross IP, that at least means that there is no ambiguity in the long term ownership of the brand helping their partnership with Sony for a Robotech film.
To commemorate the 35th anniversary of Transformers TakaraTomy Mall is releasing a G1 Optimus Prime with a G1 styled recolor/repaint of Studio Series #38 Optimus Prime in a two pack! This version has fast become a fan favorites after it debuted in Bumblebee last year and is now presented with his original release counterpart. Unfortunately neither cab comes with Prime's iconic trailer. The item is currently listed at $100.00US (10,800Y).
Read the product info from TakaraTomy Mall: "Beyond the time of 35 years, the original and the latest commander appeared in the set.
Shipped with the pkg image at the time of the nostalgic release of the original convoy that appeared 35 years ago, reproduce the design with a header the image of the car robot format at the time.
Optimus Prime studio series version that appeared in the latest movie, g1 toy version changed the color specification based on the image."
And for that image just check out the pics below. We're also treated to a modern update of Prime's classic box art, this time using the Studio Series Optimus as the model. Be sure to notice new paint details like the red on Studio Prime's torso, the blue on the backs of his hands, the lack of black on his shoulder crests and certain ahem, other areas lacking paint that was present on the original release.
Enjoy the views and share your thoughts with the Seibertron crew in the forums! As always stay tuned to Seibertron for the ultimate in Transformers news.
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