One of the minds behind BotCon has decided to put his efforts into creating a new fan-run Transformers event, and this summer sees the first iteration of Pete's Robot Convention! More information can be found in the press release below, but already attending are the likes of Robby Musso, Alex Milne, Josh Perez and Dan Khanna, plus retailers and vendors. Check it out!
The Summer Robot Convention lives on with Pete’s Robot Convention this June 23-24, 2017 at the Cincinnati Marriott at RiverCenter!
Cincinnati, OH –Dating back to 1994, the Summer Robot Convention has been a time-honored tradition for fans of all ages and we are thrilled to have the opportunity to keep that tradition going. Pete's Robot Convention makes its inaugural launch this year, taking the Robot Convention concept back to its roots with a renewed focus on the vendors and the thousands of amazing robot toys they will have for sale, while also providing a great venue for fans to come together and make it the social event that we've all come to enjoy. And like we said, there will be thousands of robot toys for sale!
We are offering Pre-Registration for anyone who wants to take part in both the Friday evening activities as well as the Saturday show. Click the Pre-Registration link today to sign up for only $59.75! Check out everything you get for this low attending price! We will also be offering at-the-door admission. Teens and Adults are $10. Kids 12 and under are FREE!
The Transformers, Gobots, Voltron, Robotech, Exo-Squad, Power Rangers, Z-Bots, Commandrons, TriBots, and classic characters from across the last 50 years… Fans of all these great properties and so many more are all welcome at Pete's Robot Convention!
Please visit PetesRoboCon.com for all the details and additional info. We look forward to seeing you this summer at Pete’s Robot Convention!
It's been a while since we heard about these, but it looks as though the BotCon 2016 revealed Ninja Force Hologram Megatron figure is arriving in some collectors' hands! The images of the GI Joe vs Transformers crossover below are courtesy of Planet Iacon on Facebook, and show off the two modes of the translucent Decepticon leader (from G2!) using the Combiner Wars Warpath mold. Check them out!
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!
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
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
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
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!
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.
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.
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.
"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
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.
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 had great engineering, 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.
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.
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.
One more day is left, and this year will be over. If you look at 2016, there have been too high a number of dark moments outside of the life on the boards. But when you look at what our hobby, our fandom, our world of robots have produced, we actually struck some very good chords this year, wouldn't you agree? It has been a year of anniversaries, a year of milestones, a year of beasts and movies and comics, a year of toys, a year of endings and beginnings -- I suppose it's only right that we take some time now to make it...
A Year in Review - Transformers 2016
Art: Kei Zama
That's right: we're back! We'll be taking a look at what happened since the end of 2015, a few categories at a time, as usual. Also, this dish is best served accompanied by a nice 2016 podcast episode. Trés joli.
Let's meet our hosts for the ride, then, shall we..? Introducing:
Our Gracious Over Boards
We've rejigged the categories a little, to include more topics to cover outside of just the toys:
Cobotron - At first I thought Grand Galvatron. That whole set did a real number for my imagination, and the decos come close to the very best of the line. But the more I thought about it, the more I realized there was one other toy from the line that I spent more time playing with and building my own stories around. I spent hours "scrambling" to find the perfect team to accompany him, and in doing so discovered that there isn't really a single limb that doesn't look good on him. I think he is the very best torso bot of the line, and he goes by Voyager Sky Lynx. The proportions in torso mode are near perfect, and although some seemed to have issues with loose joints, mine does not. His dino-bird mode is equally as fun, especially serving as a mount for another warrior. And while he looks smashing combined with the G2 Aerial Bots, his best looking feature is still that amazing high collared lynx head sculpt. MEOW!
Bronzewolf - While most would regard the CW era as wave after wave of retools and repaints, it did give us, most importantly, a combiner system that not only worked but worked well, and looked good at the same time. The likes of this we had never seen before, whether in G1 or those awful Movie "Combiners". It also gave us some updated versions of our favorite G1 characters, my favorite of which is Sky Lynx. While it, like almost all other figures from CW, has its faults (namely the inability to separate into lion/bird modes individually). It's a gorgeous looking representation of a character that has gone under-appreciated since the G1 days.
megatronus - Coming at the tail end of Combiner Wars, Sky Lynx is, in this staff member's opinion, the most superbly engineered voyager of the line. He encapsulates all of his G1 wackiness while making for a no-hassle combiner torso - what's not to like? What put him over the top - and this is a perversely personal point - was the devilish difficulty finding him at retail. That made finally finding him that much more delightful.
ScottyP - Grand Galvatron came in late and saved Unite Warriors, as well as all of G1. Let me tell you why...
Editor's Note - Redacted Content: ScottyP wrote about 12,000 words of fan fiction about Grand Galvatron here. It was, well, not very good. In fact, were we to publish it, the whole of civilization may be set back about 12,000 years. That's right - one year for every word. There was this mess about how to properly extinguish a campfire, a romance plot involving time travel and Jennifer Love-Hewitt, a continuation of Budiansky's Skullgrin story arc for some reason, and all the while it just never got anywhere in terms of plot or character development. I think Thundercracker's Josh Boyfriend screenplays are likely infinitely better than every last sentence of this junk that was written by a usually upstanding Site Admin. For the potential entertainment of readers, the last dreadfully melodramatic line is left intact below.
And so it was that Curse Armada Thrust looked wistfully into the deep vacuum of time and thought the only thought that mattered any more: "It was all just a matter of... time."
william-james88 - Part of me wishes this year’s combiners came out last year. I say this because there is no doubt in my mind that this year’s combiner wars toys were better than last year’s by a fair margin. The teams were more diverse in terms of molds and transformations and several had that extra premium feel in terms of paint apps. Yet, there was that mold fatigue that was hard to go against. I remember looking at my G2 Menasor and while I was marveling at the paint apps and tampographs (especially on G2 Wildrider), I didn’t really have this urge to transform the components or put them together simply because any mystery was already uncovered when I transformed the original. While maybe beautiful, redecos rarely have that same special feeling of discovering a new puzzle and with a combiner you get that for several toys all at once. But Grand Galvatron found a way to go against all that. The decos, and especially the two new heads, really went a long way into making this the stand out set of the entire line. To the point where I still felt I was experiencing something new even though they were all redecos (especially the jets). So, while I really like Unite Warriors Computron, I think the best combiner of the year would go to Grand Galvatron.
Burn - Geez where does one start with this? Such a big line to choose from.
But for me, if there was one that really stood out it would be Computron. Not Hasbro or Takara though, a combination of them. (Something I did). While Takara went the extra mile with Nosecone, both did a fantastic job with Strafe (though Takara won there too).
Of course Hasbro gave us the plucky little wheel that could (melt) ... Scrounge!
Counterpunch - I could have turned my attention to the larger teams, particularly UW Computron, but Nosecone was such a delightful tooling that I felt he should get a nod all his own. It’s as if this base body was designed for our scientific drilling expert from the outset. The color choices, the blocky nature of the limbs, and the Japanese exclusive drill all pull together to make what is in my opinion, the nicest limb of the year in the CW/UW line.
D-Maximus_Prime - Hmm, kind of a difficult one for me really. I'm gonna have to say... Strafe. I love the Air Raid mold a lot and it really works for Strafe. Plus, he is the one Combiner Wars Technobot that got a good makeover and he can combine with Scrounge! Both Unite Warriors and Combiner Wars delivered good looking Strafe's, and I love this one. He is awesome. And considering the fact that I consider Computron to be the best Combiner we got from Combiner wars, Strafe is just so sweet.
Kurona - It's a really difficult choice for me, but I've really gotta go with Victorion. When I got her I couldn't stop being amazed with her; the remolding on each figure to make them more feminine was fantastic, it had my favourite CW Voyager, my favourite CW limb twice, Dustup really stood out from the rest of the Dead End mold uses as her own unique thing, the colours are great in person, the sword is absolutely phenomenal, the new feet and hands work so well... I can't stop going on about her. She's absolutely perfect, I'd say the only real disappointment is Jumpstream - I just don't like that Breakdown mold. But hey, car and leg mode are great so can't complain too much.
Va'al - Much like previous years, my toy habits are limited to very select figures at specific times. But I had been eyeing Victorion since her announcement, and the entire Hasbro team knew of my definitely-not-an-obsession with the set at BotCon, Earth Wars meetings, online... It uses one of the best torso molds in the line, it has the adorable motorbike that could, the sword is magnificent, and the Helitwins arrived to kick some sense into Alpha Bravo! Gotta love siblings...
Burn - While the end of Combiner Wars saw more and more repaints that I just wasn't interested in, it was off-set by the introduction of Titans Return. My initial stance was to ignore the likes of Blurr and Scourge who were already represented in my "Neo-G1" collection. But I grabbed them anyway. While not blow my mind impressive, they were okay.
But then there were the others. Hardhead was a fun figure. As was Chromedome. But the two stand out figures for me, and these only recently joined the collection, were Brainstorm and Triggerhappy. These guys look fantastic in both modes. Not to mention how great they are at different poses. If you have the chance, grab these guys. Totally worth it!
megatronus - Deluxe Brainstorm. No ifs, ands, or buts about it. While TR voyagers thus far have been fairly clunky with the occasional inspired touch, the deluxe figures have stolen the show. Of these, Walgreens-exclusive Brainstorm is best in show. Between the original mold, color scheme, streamlined transformation/alt mode, and remarkable poseability, Brainstorm checks off all my boxes. I remain amazed that I could be so sullen over mold-mate Blurr, but so ecstatic over Brainstorm... do you believe in magic?
Bronzewolf - So many excellent figures to choose from. Mindwipe is pretty good, with an engaging transformation with a great looking robot and bat mode. Takara PowerMaster Convoy looks stunning in robot mode and in truck mode, with a cab that looks just spectacular.
But my favorite had to be the Blurr/Brainstorm mold. Walgreens Brainstorm has amazing tampos and color scheme. They look slightly faded and yellowed, making it look like a vintage toy, which, for me, is awesome. The proportions of the mold are really good, and it just looks incredible on a shelf. Really a highlight so far of the TR line.
Kurona - The Titans finally returned! ... with bad UK distribution. And a ridiculous price hike in the UK. And while my own personal funds are declining. I'm poor, guys.
Anyway, this meant I was only able to get Chromedome, Weirdwolf Wolfwire and Buzzsaw (totally counts). I love them all, the Titan Master integration works really well, and I'm glad I finally have a Chromedome for my Lost Lighter shelf. Buuuut, much as I like Domey and much as I'm surprised at how much I've been liking Buzzsaw, it has to go to Wolfwire. Absolutely incredible figure, especially in wolf mode - that's what really sells him. They really went to town on that because there's no molding or paint app choices (Titan Master notwithstanding) I'd change, and standing on his own or among a bunch of other random 'cons he just looks really cool and unique. Oh, uh, the robot mode is cool too. But the wolf is amazing!
Cobotron - My absolute favorite gets a spot further down the line here, so I'll put my #2 in this one. The honor goes to Wolfwire Weirdwolf. I love it when a toy can achieve a nice deco simply by using it's plastic colors to do the work. Wolfy here does that. He also hits a few of my other Transformers sweet spots like, beast mode, and a sword. He is a well made figure with an awesome robot mode, an even better alt mode, and a pretty fun and interesting route to get from one to the other. The Headmaster gimmick goes a long way for me on all the figures from this line, but the idea of a little bot driving a giant robotic dire wolf just really turns a key for me.
D-Maximus_Prime - Cerebros. No, really. That dude has so much character in him despite the fact that he turns into a head. He really does look awesome, poses really good, and he is the middle guy in the double Titanmaster gimmick. Plus, his head mode and his individual head sculpt are both amazing.
Shout out to Blurr. He will the favorite of many, but Cerebros wins for me.
ScottyP - This pick was almost Cerebros because that toy/Reflector Pre-tool is great, but I'm giving the nod to Highbrow. I'll go with the Takara Legends version for the superior paint/color scheme and bonus Titan Master car. Plus, that version includes a comic where Highbrow saves Papika from Weirdwolf, who is slowly cutting off all of her clothes but ultimately does not succeed thanks to Highbrow's actions. Anime may not be real, but the fun you can have with Highbrow definitely is.
william-james88 - While all Titans Return toys were fun, I found them rather simple. Legends Blurr was different though. He was quite complex for a deluxe and extremely satisfying. There was a great attention to detail, like how one leg stores the tail fin and how the tiny well rolling wheels are hidden flush in robot mode thanks to perfectly shaped holes. Plus the Takara paint job just makes him such a standout. To me, the only need for an MP Blurr is for the scale, but I am really curious as to how it could have a better look or transformation.
Counterpunch - In a world where so many great figures are coming on line week after week, I have to acknowledge the one that I expected to be my biggest disappointment when he turned out to be one of my simplest joys: Hot Rod is excellent. Transformation, detailing, cherry red candy color, weaponry… he’s the total package for $15.99 or whatever. I love getting surprises like this and lately, they’ve felt few and far between with the predictability of the Combiner Wars line. Hot Rod may not have been a classic Headmaster, but this toy leaves me thinking… maybe he should have been.
Favorite 2016 Transformers: Robots in Disguise/Adventure
Cobotron - Ahhhhh RID. The little line that could. Battle Packs were a hoot. Love that size class. It seems to be unanimous though, that the Warrior Class Decepticons were where it was at in 2016. I'm in. Heck, even Ratchet was better than I had expected, but the clear winner for me is Warrior Thunderhoof. In my book, he could have scrapped by on character design alone, but with everything else this figure has to offer added, he is the clear favorite.
D-Maximus_Prime - Warrior Thunderhoof. That guy is so awesome. He perfectly reflects his show model, which I love, and how many farm-formers have there ever been? Plus, he has antlers and hooves. His Transformation is fun and intuitive, and his robot mode is perfect looks-wise. Yes, he lacks some beef on his back, but he is literally awesome, so it matters not.
Va'al - I'll let this image speak for itself. And never talk to him or his son ever again.
ScottyP - You're making me choose? From all this awesome stuff? Hrm. Warrior Thunderhoof by a nose. In fact, probably by a very small nose, like a reindeer nose. Now I'm disappointed that there was no special Holiday Edition Thunderhoof again, but I digress. Thunderhoof is all the best parts of the stellar design and engineering work that accompanied most of this year's Warrior Class Decepticon releases from Robots in Disguise. Distilled within this blue and black antlered mobster is wonderful articulation and even the occasionally hard to find alt-mode weapon storage. Of course, then there's the transformation itself, which has multiple wild steps that truly involve him folding up and over himself in a way that must be experienced to be understood. The Adventure deco is a thing of beauty, so if you can track that down for a reasonable amount it's the recommended version here.
william-james88 - This line kicked so much ass this year. It was easily the most fun I had in terms of looking at each figure individually. Hasbro told us we wold get Decepticons in 2016 and they delivered. Probably more than either of us would have expected with Megatronus, Quillfire, Thunderhoof, Fracture, Bisk, Scorponok and Starscream. All of them were winners, truly. All are very good toys, with fun designs and new tansformations. Picking my favourite is insanely hard so it will be a tie between Hasbro’s Warrior Fracture and Takara’s Warrior Thunderhoof. Both are ingenious designs and very satisfying. They also look amazing in both modes.
Bronzewolf - The minicons. I know, I know, but hear me out. These collectible little guys are super cool, and one of the closest things the US has to Arms Micron. There's a great array of different characters that take different forms, from beasts to bots and everything in between.
Kurona - Uhhhh, Dragonus. He's kinda cute but I don't like him that much BUT he's the only RiD figure I have. congrats u win
Counterpunch - I mention TAV Windblade here because of the stark contrast in detail and care that Takara is taking with their version of Robots in Disguise. The mold itself is adequate and is in many ways just not as interesting as some of the Decepticon troops who have been 2016's star performers for RiD. What is special though is how Windblade looks like she stepped of the screen. Takara remains the go-to source for those of us who like our figures to actually look like their fictional depictions.
Favorite 2016 Transformers: None of the Above Figure
megatronus - Botcon Predacus. I love this set, and not just because of the cartoon homaging headsculpts/deco or the expertly executed paint job. Nor just because that combined mode is a beast to behold. And certainly, it's not because of the shortcomings of basically all of the individual members. Rather, Tripredacus was my first Beast Wars toy (or set) I ever got (from my parents; Happy Hanukkah!). It's amazing to have a vicious-looking modern rendition on my shelf that can hark back to watching episodes of Beast Wars while holding my Tripredacus. Nearly everything about him harks back to either the original toy or Beast Wars cartoon while adding that modern, Generations-style twist with a combiner face that is spot on 90s ridiculousness. Love at first reveal.
D-Maximus_Prime - Botcon Magnaboss. Yes, he may be mostly stickers with 3 figures that already came out, but I managed to snag the stickers and he is awesome. Yeah, I customized him the other 2 limbs instead of finding Unit-3 and Tigatron, but those 2 figures use the same molds, so it is a good representation. He looks so awesome, and the stickers do some wonderful work. Really awesome addition to my collection!
Bronzewolf - Club exclusive Bluestreak! It might be another CW redeco, but I really appreciate the paint and Tampos, plus it's one of my favorite characters of all time. (Going for the Blue bluestreak deco gets bonus points, too.)
ScottyP - Takara Legends Skids. The extra paint detail makes this figure look like it just escaped an exploding shuttle, magnetized a car, then blew it up after throwing it at a Legislator. Sleep tight, soldier.
william-james88 - Kabaya Fortress Maximus. This was my first time with Kabaya and it was quite enjoyable. This is a great set which actually has paint. And there is no parts forming during transformation from city to bot. Plus it comes with the most adorable little Powerglide ever.
Cobotron - A pop fly to left field! Takara's Diaclone Reboot Dia-Battles V2. I know, I know, it's not a Transformer, but here me out. He is Transformer's Grandpa, and you wouldn't not invite Grandpa to the family New Year's Eve party, would you?
This figure is amazing. If you are a fan of Transformers, a fan of the art of Japanese robot toys, and more specifically a fan of the art of Takara, I can't recommend this toy enough. Over the years Takara has done some really wonderful work rebooting some of their older lines and Dia-Battles follows suit. This toy is impeccably engineered with off the charts articulation and functionality, has beautiful detailing and paint,and is just an absolute joy to behold.
The thing about this figure is the modularity. Out of the box it can be configured into 12 different modes, but with the connection system they've employed Takara has also left it open to improvisation for hours of endless play. It's this modular play pattern that makes this toy so much fun. A great call back to old play patterns of the Diaclone and Microman toy lines. Maybe you need a breather from Transformers but still in the form of a robot toy. Please, give this guy a try. Besides, like I said, he's family. And BTW, he and his Dia-nauts roll tight right along side the Titan Masters.
Counterpunch - Victorion. Here's the thing, Victorion was kind of a flat release. What I mean by that is, for something that should have been more hyped and celebrated, her set kind of came and went without much notice. Victorion is really the first Combiner Wars gift set to offer something truly new and unique. She helps plan the seeds of new thought and characters in the franchise. In a way I wish it had been a more general release and that the whole Torchbearer set was priced cheaper to get more people into the idea. I really look forward to the day when we're adding more characters and ideas to the mythos in a more routine way.
Favorite 2016 Transformers Masterpiece Figure (Hasbro or Takara)
ScottyP - I'm saving MP-32 for a later topic, so I'm going to write about my second favorite Masterpiece figure for 2016 and beg to the good Dr. Va'al that this doesn't get cut. If it does, at least leave this sentence and let me feel the sting of having words murdered by a technicality.
This is an unbelievably tough choice to make, and might even vary depending on mood, but I'm going to stick with MP-29 Shockwave here just in case the MP-33 Inferno feelings I'm having are because of his novelty. In other words, logic dictates this choice. Shockwave is an expressive and gorgeous piece in both form and function. The robot and gun modes are slick and clean. The total package of the figure, accessories (including a clever double-use for the gun stand where it helps hide the gun's back kibble in robot mode), and even some alternate stickers made the long wait for an updated version of G1 Shockwave worth it.
Also, as someone nearly thirty years behind the curve on one corner of Transformers fiction, this Decepticon's heroics/antics in Time Wars were "new to me" this year and made me love this cold purple evildoer even more.
megatronus - MP29 Shockwave. Besides for marking the shift to slavish cartoon accuracy - a key inflection point in the history of this line - Shockwave is simply an amazing specimen. Have you see that light piping? That hose? The parts integration? The smaller gun of himself - that he can hold! More than his features, which more or less speaks for themselves, the release of Shockwave marks the completion of Megatron's lieutenants in MP form - leading up to the big bad himself in 2017.
Burn - This one surprised me. While I was looking forward to him, I was looking forward to Inferno more. But as great as Inferno is, he just doesn't quite reach the level of awesomeness that is Ironhide.
I had my reservations about him from the pictures. But once I had him in hand, I was quickly won over. A boxy little van twists, turns, and folds into a stocky damn good looking robot. While Inferno gave us "ladder magic", I feel it was Ironhide that helped lead the engineering that gave us "ladder magic". Unfortunately his mold brother Ratchet just didn't match up due to his primarily white look.
william-james88 - Masterpiece Ironhide. I am so impressed with how they were able to incorporate the cartoon vibe in robot mode while also delivering a very realistic alt-mode. Ironhide is one of those character that never had a good figure (even the movie versions had trouble getting it right and giving us good toys). And for such an iconic character, that is just so odd but it makes this release that much sweeter. Takara went all out. Gorgeous alt-mode (well, for what it is), great robot mode which has the alt-mode disappear away aside from the perfect alt-mode integration (from the front). this is probably the purchase I was most hesitant of this year that surprised me most.
Counterpunch - Optimus Primal: 1. He's not made of boxes. 2. He's not strictly G1, though that's kind of the same thing as #1. 3. MP Optimus Primal is one of the best designed, best decoed toys in recent history. We should all be excited for what may come to pass with engineering like this for Beast Wars characters. I am eagerly anticipating a BW Megatron just on my experience with this. It shows that the MP line is more than a one trick monkey.
D-Maximus_Prime - Masterpiece Shattered Glass Optimus Prime. He is my first masterpiece, and as a result wins by default, though I'm not sure anyone could top him. He is a joy to behold, with marvelous paint work, a great evil feel to him, and a black badass trailer! The green Energon axe does it for me too, and the amount of detail put into him shows the love that he got. For even more articulated thoughts, you can see my review with plenty of pictures and all the love I can give this guy there.
Cobotron - The Masterpiece toy I had the most fun with this year was Loudpedal. YA! I know! He's a stinkin' repaint, AND of a figure that's maybe not the best in the line. I'm a huge sucker to call backs to ye olden days of pre-TF history. The deco is phenomenal, and I've always loved that almost knight's helmet head sculpt. He re-energized my MP Decepticon ranks in a way I didn't see coming. He and Exhaust are a terrible twosome of trouble making turds who's misadventures have been a treat to watch unfold on my Masterpiece shelves.
...and now: Figure of the Year
Burn - You know what? I'm not falling into this trap Va'al. This has been a fantastic year for figures. I'm not picking one that stands above all for the year. Far too many to choose from!
Va'al - Everyone else fell for it...
Counterpunch - Fort Max was a really significant part of my childhood and one of my best Christmas memories. I remember seeing him on the shelf as a child and being shocked by the size of such a toy. Well, I had intended to wait for the Takara version on Max, but seeing one for myself in Toys R Us changed my mind. Some may gripe (at great length, while no one cares to listen) about how this is a Metroplex re-tool, but to me, this is the figure of the year because it is a really high quality piece and it did a great job of reminding me of the simple joy of spending $115 after coupons and discounts.
megatronus - Titan Fortress Maximus. He's a headmaster with a headmaster - inception in a nutshell. Fort Max borrows just enough tooling from Metroplex to be familiar, but shakes it up enough to effectively differentiate itself from the first 2 foot Titan and, more importantly, to be exciting. Now that he's gone on sale practically everywhere, you owe it to yourself to own a Transformer that could convincingly stand in for your toddler.
Bronzewolf - Since I didn't buy any MP's this year, I'll have to stick with mainline figures, and, with that in mind, Walgreen's Brainstorm would be my pick. I can write a book about how perfect he is in my opinion, and I'm sure others that were lucky enough to find him can, too. His stance and proportions are just amazing, he reminds me of a simpler Generations Springer in a way, where he feels and looks like a premium figure, but for a regular retail price. Just great.
Oh, and also Fort Max. He's cool too.
D-Maximus_Prime - Eesh, toughy right there. We had several really good ones this year. But, I'm gonna have to go out on a limb here and probably differentiate from all the others here: Titans Return Alpha Trion.
Despite its shortcomings, this toy finally gave us all a retail release of the wise old sage from Transformers lore, and to me, there was a lot of love put into him. The 2 alt modes, despite not being completely perfect, homaged so much of this guys past it's crazy. I love the lion mode. It is to die for, the spaceship isn't that bad either guys, come on!
But what wins this one for me is the robot mode. It is beautifully detailed and painted, possibly with more paint then I have ever seen on a Hasbro figure. He has a majestic sword and literally no kibble. Plus, his warrior styled armor is so awesome and it makes him stand out. He is a figure that cannot disappear from your vision no matter how far back on the shelf he is. He is my favorite figure of 2016.
Cobotron - Transformers for me has never been about adhering to any one story line or fiction, but more about cherry picking bits and pieces to build my own imaginary world of robots at war. And the figures that really do it for me are the ones that most inspire me to play out my own stories. This past year the one figure that did that, and did it hard, was Titans Return Alpha Trion. The character design that went into his robot mode is absolutely fantastic! He pushed so many of my fantasy buttons, Transformers or other. The moment I laid eyes and mitts on this ancient, time tested, magic sword wielding, lion adorned, mustachioed robotic mystical knight, triangulated with his mythical beast and mighty battle cruiser alt modes, my head was reeling with ideas of magnificent adventure. And if that wasn't enough, he has the Headmasters gimmick thrown in the mix.
For me Alpha Trion was pure rocket fuel for my imaginary play time. He and Vector Prime have been drumming up some heavy adventures across my shelves for some time now, and those old goats show no signs of stopping until every last Con is made to pay!
william-james88 - While I am not a hardcore G1 fan (I was born in 88 and only learnt in 2014 that the G1 Ironhide toy had no head), I have become something of a purist in my adult life. As a kid, I actually did have a few Transformers toys (G2 Dreadwing) and I had Beast Wars toys and not only did I see them as different lines, but different things entirely. So while I generally do not care if a toy is its own thing and not show accurate, holding that Masterpiece Optimus Primal in my hand in beast mode brought a very new feeling in me as a collector. And the conversion is phenomenal. He truly morphs, the entire shape of the figure is redefined. It's genius, especially how it does it in so little space. Instead of having a vehicle turn into a mechanical robot, you have what is essentially an action figure morphing entirely from one form to the next. To finally have a toy that looks like the Optimus on the show (especially in beast mode) and to have him on the 20th anniversary of said show is truly magical and I cannot think of any other toy that should warrant the title of Figure of the Year.
ScottyP - MP-32 Optimus Primal transforms from gorilla to Maximal Commander, evolving the Masterpiece line in a way where both truck and monkey feel like they belong. This toy is as close as it gets to perfection for a beloved and iconic Transformers character. It was easy to imagine a Masterpiece Beast Wars figure falling flat in form and execution. Toys based on mid-90s CG models that would be impossible to scale to Generation One based MP figures in any practical sense, that also must have beast modes that show as little robot kibble as possible? The recipe for disaster was there, and yet factored in so minutely that it makes me wonder why I was ever worried in the first place. A slick transformation, shockingly clean design, clever accessories, superbly expressive pose-ability, and a genuinely cool light up gimmick make this the clear cut Transformers toy of the year. While picking a runner-up or two would be extraordinarily difficult, the top of the mountain is ruled by a gorilla. Send all complaints to the banana box for disposal.
Made it so far? Here's a break for you all, featuring a relatively recent discovery round these parts!
And now, back to the list, as we move away from toy talk; starting with...
Favorite 2016 Transformers Comics-moment
ScottyP - In a total cop-out to prevent me from making a choice (again) between Sins of the Wreckers and Dying of the Light, which I waffle between on the hour every seven to eight hours, here's a short personal anecdote instead.
I flew to New Orleans last month and took my recently acquired trade paperback of Dying of the Light along with me. As readers of the book will know (hopefully, that's all of you), as the issues progress time edges ever closer to sunset on Necroworld. For anyone not following, that refers to a literal sunset used as a narrative device and not a purely figurative one. Anyhow, as the second leg of my flight took off, sunset was a bit more than 30 minutes away so the skies were still mostly blue in Charlotte and I settled in to take the chance to relax and read. Geography will tell you that when flying west at sunset, you are chasing said sunset.
Despite having a window seat with a perfect view of the extra long and slow sunset, I didn't really grasp this until looking at this panel:
At first I thought my eyes were playing tricks on me and/or there had been some unknown drop in cabin pressure and a lack of oxygen was driving my brain to view the page as much larger than it should be, but this was thankfully incorrect. What was really going on was that the color of the sky on the page more or less matched the exact color of the sky out the window. I had to keep reading, and did so at a slow, thoughtful pace (it was a re-read, after all) to find that the look of the world outside kept closely matching the world depicted on the page, getting gradually darker as the journey and the story progressed. The flight landed around twilight, with the book only marginally outpacing reality by the end. The last page I got to during that step of the journey? 'Thanks for traveling with me.'
Kurona - Dying of the Light. ALL of it. This probably shouldn't be surprising; if you know my Transformers opinions at all you'd know I adore MTMTE and consider it leagues above every other Transformers fiction (though a lot of the stuff filed under 'everything else' is still great, gimme Beast Wars and Animated any day)... and for that reason I don't actually want to say anything specific about it. I don't want to spoil what I consider to be top-notch fiction. I'll just say that Dying of the Light was an absolute thrillride from start to finish with everything I could want out of a series. except Nightbeat. Needed more Nightbeat
william-james88 - Definitely the end of More Than Meets the Eye. I liked seeing Megatron take down the DJD and how a lot of threads were wrapped up. I also really enjoyed Overlord’s reaction to the idea of finally taking down Megatron which shows how much the character has matured (I also finally read Last Stand of the Wreckers this year for the first time so the contrast was interesting). I am very curious of what is happening next. I love Blaster and can’t believe he would be such a $%!* to cooperate with Getaway. Something’s up.
Va'al has serious thoughts he has already expressed regarding that last point. More for the discussion, perhaps?
D-Maximus_Prime - More Than Meets The Eye #54, when Megatron walks onto the field of battle and silently blasts his enemies away, saving his comrades and sending them to safety. That page gives me goosebumps it's so beautiful. Alex Milne has never given us bad art, but that page alone is a masterpiece in its own right.
Counterpunch - All Hail Optimus and the reaction panels: The reactions of the major story players in the face of Optimus' annexation of Earth was my favorite moment. I loved having a progressively heroic Megatron in one book with a progressively authoritarian Prime in another. The script was flipped, so to speak, for a time. I hope that these two characters slide further into a morally questionable gray zone.
Cobotron - With what little time adulthood/parenthood allows for the hobby these days I don't get around to reading many comics. Most my time is spent with the toys. But, for my birthday this year my brother gave me the full run in trades of Transformers VS G.I. Joe, and I have to say it was one of the most strange and wonderful comic book experiences I've ever had. The art is so out there and, the story telling is tongue-in-cheek. It blew my mind. I told my bro I loved that the art looks like a Funkadelic album cover, and he replied with a laugh, "Yeah! Prison art!".
At first glance the art looks so amateur, but the more I pored over every detail, I came to understand the genius of Tom Scioli. I felt like present day me was standing in eleven-year-old me's childhood bedroom doorway watching myself play one of my many TF/Joe mash ups. Or was I standing in the doorway of Scioli's childhood? Either way it was a great ride, and reminded me of the innocence and intricacies of a child's imagination. This series is not for for everyone, and I understand why. If you get it, GREAT! If you don't, you probably won't. And, that's OK. I would recommend these books to anyone, as long as they come at them with an open mind.
Va'al - Issue #5 of the slow-burning gem that is Till All Are One. This book has gone through so many repolishes, renamings, rebrandings, and even though Windblade is still mostly the titular character, the latest iteration is the best fitting to the ensemble, in terms of cast, story, scope and repercussions. May follow Transformers/ex RID/Optimus Prime for the core mythos and politics, several follow More Than Meets the Eye/Lost Light for the sad gay robots (get over it, it's a compliment) and the inevitable feelings and convoluted plots. I stick with TAAO, like the two Windblades before it, as it brings cosmic action, cosmic mythos, post-colonial themes, religious vs secular debates, still one of the best Starscreams around - visually and in writing. And the best collection of biting one-liners not reliant on continuity nerdery.
Va'al splurted out tea while reading this line, and had to take a break from editing.
Favorite 2016 Transformers Show-moment
Kurona - A few things to get out of the way first. I don't watch Rescue Bots but from what I've seen, it's a pretty neat show. And while I've been enjoying RiD, I haven't found anything about it that I really like and really thrills me. So I can't point to any one thing about it and say "that's amazing" or "this is easily my favourite part". It's just kinda decent and meh.
And while it is arguably the worst Transformers show since Energon - I actually liked it less than Energon - yes, my favourite Show thing this year is from Machinima's Combiner Wars. Though if you've taken part in that board discussion, I think you all know what it is - it's Megs. It's friggin' Megs. It feels like every single amount of effort, originality and unique ideas went into this single solitary character because he is great. Maybe it's because CW was such a bad show that the one good thing seemed so much better, maybe it's because I haven't enjoyed a lot of cartoon Megatrons (aside from BW who is arguably a different archetype), but this guy freaking rocks. He's always enjoyable to watch, he's always got a quick quip, he has some character resolution... oh, yeah, and he turns into a super space gun in addition to having an actual vehicle mode. If you have to watch CW, just wait until you get to Megatron. He's the one good part, I swear.
william-james88 - This was a weak spot for Transformers this year. I really liked the interpretation of Megatron in Machinima’s Combiner Wars. He was so jovial, daring, untouchable and yet relentless all at once it was a joy to watch. It also showed me that the fandom was not bitter about change in the least. We will always be up for something new if it is done well.
D-Maximus_Prime - Bumblebee v. Bisk from "Bumblebee's Night Off" in Robots in Disguise. That is now ranked up there as my favorite fight scene from RiD, and second in the aligned continuity behind only the Predaking/Magnus/Wheeljack fight from Prime. The music, the lights, the whole thing was a great fight scene. I loved every second of it and I constantly rewatch that scene.
Shout out to the return of Starscream though. When he walks through that Space Bridge... Ooooooooooh maaaaaaaaaaan
Bronzewolf - Ratchet returning to the Aligned continuity. It's been a long time coming for the doc, and I'm glad to see him back on the screen. One piece of what made Prime such a great show has made a comeback to maybe make RID a bit better.
ScottyP - Steeljaw's first stroll through Glowstrike and Saberhorn's ship full of Decepticons in Robots in Disguise Season 2 Episode 3. Crazy colored Vehicons, Chompazoids, and even Crystal Widow!? It was a short but really fun scene that began to inform the ultimate direction Steeljaw took during the season. Honorable mention here to Grimlock making pretzels.
Counterpunch - My 2 year old decided that watching RiD with me was the way to spend good quality time. I particularly enjoyed when he told me definitively that Optimus was "red and black." I almost corrected him when I looked up at the screen to realize that he was right.
megatronus - Anytime Grimlock gets screen-time on RID. Grimlock has gone from one of the most annoying/perplexing characters on the show to one of the most entertaining. Pretzel, anyone?
Favorite Transformers Game-moment
Va'al - Cheating a little again here, but... Being part of the actual Earth Wars consultant/contributor/influencer group, my thoughts and face and voice and all! (My body will only and forever belong to Burn - though he never takes me up on the offer. ScottyP might...) I got to chat to the developers, finally meet Seibertron himself, and bring Alpha Bravo along for the ride to Space Ape Games.
megatronus - As a lifelong Transformers fan and long-term collector, I've struggled to share my hobby with those I love, particularly my wife. Well - love finds a way. Ever since I started playing Earth Wars beta back in February, I've been hooked. Once the game hit wide release in June, my wife decided to see what all the fuss is about - and now she's hooked. Say what you will about Earth Wars and mobile gaming, but I'm grateful to have found a channel through which to share this hobby.
D-Maximus_Prime - I only got the Earth Wars game recently, but I love using Vortex. His attack is fun and can be used so many times in one battle. Plus, he looks really cool in the game. He may be on my C-team, but he does not lose fights.
Kurona - Hm. Earth Wars can be very frustrating, and really stretches the limits of the free-to-play genre... but the one upside this brings is that it makes it VERY nice when you get a particular unit you want. I just got a 3-star Soundwave over a weekend, that was wicked.
But the real good thing is how good it feels to co-operate. Oh, sure, it's just contributing points towards an event or a war, but it feels good to have all that build up and feel like you're really helping out everyone else in addition to just yourself. That's what I love about this game. Co-operation.
Bronzewolf - That RID Augmented Reality game that I reviewed! I know it's random and not really a "game" perse, but man, it's a fun little thing to mess with for a bit. Check it out, it went underrated. (The game, not my review. Well, you can check that out too if you want. )
Favourite 2016 fan creation: art, custom, video, comic, fiction
Kurona - Thew. Just... just Thew. His reviews are just the most fun out there. I love him.
D-Maximus_Prime - Thew's Knockoff Beatdown: Ruination. I always enjoy his reviews, but I love a good beatdown of knockoffs. The fact that this one focused almost solely on Bruticus/Ruination KO's made it lots of fun, as well as the fact you can see how poorly made some of those guys are. Plus, I love a good pun or 50.
Bronzewolf - Cobotron's Bluestreak. Man, I'm a sucker for Streak, and when getting a combiner wars version was a pipe dream (which it still kind of is, if you don't count the club version), one herobro rose from the ashes: Cobotron. His Bluestreak is just great, very clean, and well-executed.
Cobotron - There is so much good fun stuff out there. Even in our own Transtopia. So I'm going to keep this one here in the Seibertron family. The wonderful photos of our friend and forum mate, Cyberpath. If you haven't seen his pics, you haven't been to the 'Awesome Pictures And Poses Thread'. His pictures are amazing, and I always look forward to seeing what eye candy he will post next.
I've poked and prodded him to start his own thread to showcase his work, but I've now become accustomed to seeing his pics scattered across the many threads that weave the tapestry of our Seibertron.com forums. Thanks for sprucing up the joint CP!
ScottyP - With apologies to the amazing effort and creativity shown during October's #LostLightFest on the same platform - My pick goes to something from the amazing Twitter account of Inkybauds, longtime Transformers fan known for his involvement in the (now becoming legendary if I daresay) Transmasters fan club in the UK. Earlier this year, he created this series of three tweets (one, two, three) containing a list of fake, but hilarious and timely "Modern Transformers Names". Go laugh, then come back. This Kroktease article will be here when you get back.
Va'al - Not because I was behind the initial input of a couple of them - Burn was there with me at least all the times, just quiet about it - but I really enjoy the terrible threads that we create on Seibertron, from Civil War to Braingate, to the acronyms one, even my one-person campaign for Alpha Bravo to become the New Prime of Cybertron. Alpha Prime - It Just Sounds Right.
...and now: Moment of the Year
D-Maximus_Prime - Hard one to pin down... but I gotta say pre-ordering my first Masterpiece. I have yet to attend a Transformers convention but nothing felt quite like when TFSource opened their MP SG Prime pre-order. As soon as he was even teased, I wanted him, and as he is my first Masterpiece, he is incredibly special. First Masterpiece, and it is one of my favorite comics characters. Shattered Glass was an amazing comic, and I want more Shattered Glass stuff. I like it when the good guy is suddenly the bad and viceversa. Probably why I love Autobot Megatron in IDW so much...
ScottyP - Keeping it short: Masterpiece Ironhide was the first toy I got after having to cut Transformers purchasing off completely for six weeks towards the start of this year for reasons dictated by life. For some of you, this immediately has no impact, but please bear with me. For a serial buyer such as myself, who's bought literally hundreds of Transformers each year for the past 12 years, six weeks is an eternity. Getting Ironhide in and getting to experience a really great toy of a character I've always loved in a truly meaningful, focused way was one of several events in that stretch that helped me reflect on the reasons I collect these toys and follow these unconventional characters. Steady, brave, and shining in that beautiful red, Ironhide showed up in the mail one afternoon in late February and had to be savored. Would the impact have been the same if it had been, say, Black Tracks? Why did the character of Ironhide mean so much in that moment? Finding the answers to those questions led to a few new and exciting paths down untread trails of the hobby. Life can beat you up or threaten to destroy Autobot City in your own shuttle by slipping by the early warning system, sure. But when you feel like giving up, think about what Ironhide would do. Maybe second guess it a little because of the potential consequences. Ultimately, the answer remains the same - when life asks you to give up, look down that fusion cannon pointed at you and say 'No'.
Cobotron - Oh! You mean like the time I was 100% ready to just slagging hate Masterpiece Hot Rod for his cursed cartoon accuracy, then I got him, transformed him, and he held me in is arms sweetly, and showed me the error of my ways? 'Cause that was an awesome moment! (cont'd)
william-james88 - It was that week of those slow reveals from Takara of all the components for Computron. This was the Combiner with the biggest question mark throughout the first year of the line and it is so crazy how much of an adventure it turned out with Hasbro and Takara going in completely different paths. Takara knew theirs was a big deal and they let us savour it. First by slowly showing each figure in grey scale and then showing them to us in colour. I remember marveling at each one, especially when there was a time I thought I either would not get Computron or have him be made the cheapest way possible. I was so damn happy when I saw that giant drill in the silhouette. It turned out to be one of the best toys of the year and what I like was the fanfare that came with his reveal. It was a fun adventure from the Takara announcement to getting him in my hands.
megatronus - Back to Earth Wars - one of the things my wife loved about the game was the inclusion of the Torch Bearers on the Autobot side. That's right, the component members of Victorion, Pyra Magna and the rest, have representation in the game. Well, when Amazon had the Victorion box set on sale for $40 a few weeks back, I pounced. Now my wife has her very first Transformers - a lady combiner, no less!
Cobotron - (cont'd) Or the time the Wife not only agreed that I should go to BotCon, but said "you need to go to BotCon". It was my very first, and very sadly the last. I've never seen a dealer room dedicated to just Transformers, and I took full advantage of Candyland. Knocking out a few grails along the way. The whole thing was really great though. Just the vibe and camaraderie of the whole community. It was a real treat getting to meet folks, make friends, and talk the talk during a whole weekend dedicated to the thing we like. And, Va'al even swam all the way from France! That was AMAZING!
Counterpunch - A few people will acknowledge Botcon's closing hours as their moment of the year, but I think for me, it was arriving at Botcon 2016 and watching everything fall into place one last time. We were so chill and well behaved. There were only three of us in a room, instead of twelve. No one puked. No one got stuck in a tire swing at the hotel's fake beach. No one passed out in a hallway. We've come a long way baby.
Va'al - You kidding? I loved arriving at the second day of BotCon, with only a couple of people I'd actually already met, and finally get to see everyone in the flesh! From carytheone to Cobotron, to Sabrblade to the entire Twincast crew, the Audio Knights crew, some of the COMPETITION, the artists, the Hasbro team again... and just roll the entire weekend trolling the event with custom Alpha Bravo fanboi tshirts.
Bronzewolf - Joining Seibertron.com. Seriously, I've been reading this site religiously for at least 5 years now (it became part of my daily routine) and I wouldn't trade the opportunity to write for it for anything. Love it, love the people, love the subject matter. Can't get better. Va'al: Awww.
Kurona - Dying of the Light for all reasons mentioned above. Again, don't want to spoil anything; but it's got everything I could want and just keeps going without ever hitting the brakes. An absolute Masterpiece.
Here comes the finale!
What are you looking forward to in 2017 for Transformers? With no real order...
-Titan Trypticon: more kaiju, please!
-More Titans Returns: my quantity of fun is directly correlated to my quantity of headmasters.
-Next Gimmick: Powermasters? Pretenders? Beast Wars? I'm excited to see what's in store for Transformers.
-HasCon: As a Marvel Legends and Star Wars collector, I hope HasCon is a success.
-MP36 Megatron: No words. Just silent tears of joy.
The continuation of Titans Return figures, Trypticon is coming. Will be interesting to see how he turns out. Oh and then there's the movie. I won't be getting my hopes up for it, so here's hoping it surprises me, and here's hoping some of our readers surprise me and tone down the anti-Bay rhetoric that generates so many reported posts!
The reveal of the next Beast Wars Masterpiece toy. I am hoping it is Megatron. Well, I wish it to be Dinobot but I really cannot imagine how that toy would ever work. How can he be such a slim dinosaur and turn into such a tall dark and handsome bot. The full reveal of Titan Class Trypticon is also something I look forward to but the fact that we can all picture how it will look like roughly and knowing that available space for more toys in my home is quickly diminishing kind of dampens my anticipation for the reveal, in comparison to my hopes for the next Masterpiece Beast Wars announcement.
The possibility that the next line of Transformers may give us toys of the original 13 Primes.
Classics UK Volume 6, and dare I dream Classics UK Volume 7 might also come out? I'm also looking forward to basically everyone being wrong about Power of the Primes, including me.
Oh, and finally finding out if that note Mr. Roberts left me at the end of MTMTE #38's script was a joke or a scolding (and no, I won't tell you what it said ) Va'al knows. Va'al was there. Va'al was kinda responsible for it.
Titans Return and Lost Light. Quite possibly the most generic response I could have given... but can't really think of much else. MTMTE is my favourite Transformers fiction (and overall fiction at the moment), while Titans Return has really hit the ground running. The rest of IDW too, actually - TAAO is REALLY getting good, and Optimus Prime... looks decent.
I gotta say hopefully going to my first convention. Botcon may be no more, but I will still get out there go someplace. I gotta get to one of these and live it out. There is so much potential there that I need to experience.
Figure wise, I'm really looking forward to the Titans Return Leader Decepticons. The 2 we have revealed so far look amazing, and I really look forward to some lesser known guys getting some great attention from this line. (Please Nautica!!!)
Toys, toys, toys, and more toys. Titans, Powery Primes, Liony Convoys, MP Artfire, RID's Combiner Pants Force. I'm sure 2017 will be a breakneck switchback mountain road of reveals, that will make for a great ride. I also always look forward to the hunt, and swapping campfire stories with all here in Seibertown. To a better year than the last!
Perceptor. Bring it on, man. I've been kicking around grabbing a fanstoys Tesla, but waited because of the rumors of a mainline release. I'm so glad I did. I could not be happier with how he looks, and can't wait to pick him up.
I'm also looking forward to Trypticon's reveal and potential release, and The Last Knight. I'm being cautiously optimistic (perhaps more optimistic than I should be) about it. I'm very optimistic about the toys, though. Some of my favorite real-life cars finally embodied as transformers. I'm stoked, and I'm waiting with baited breath until they get revealed.
I'm also looking forward to continuing involvement with this great community and writing for Seibertron. I know it's sappy but talking transformers with you all is the highlight of my day, and always enjoyable. To 2017 and beyond!
On those words, we come to a close on a retrospective glimpse at a busy year in Transformers, Seibertronians, toys, comics, community and more... Now it's up to you! What made your 2016 special in Transformers? What do you hope our Gracious Robots Overlords [there's more than one?!] will bring in 2017, the next Movie Year? The Energon Pub is open at all hours - just grab a seat, and let it out.
May we all surrender our Intellectual Property, and achieve Total Brand Awareness.
We have a couple of updates from TFNation 2017 headquarters, as the team released some more guest announcements and a whole botta housekeeping information - check it all out below, and get ready to start planning your UK trip soon!
Transmission ID: 00005
Operation: Two guest announcements?
The TFNation crew wish you all a Merry Christmas and, in celebration of this festive season, we have two announcements lined up. The first is to announce that one of our most popular guests will be returning for next year’s event.
JOHN-PAUL BOVE to attend TFNation 2017
Currently bringing colour to classic UK stories as part of Hachette’s Hachette Transformers: The Definitive Collection, John-Paul Bove is not only an extremely talented colourist and writer, but his positive and engaging approach to meeting members of the Transformers community represents much of what the TFNation team work towards…. So it’s no surprise that JP is the first returning guest we are pleased to announce!
John-Paul was the principle colourist for Transformers: ReGeneration One, including its’ stunning issue zero, Drift: Empire of Stone, several Bot Con comics and a host of cover colours for many other IDW transformer titles. Outside of Transformers, John-Paul’s work has graced subjects including G.I. Joe, Dr Who, Action Man and Judge Dredd.
As a writer he has lent his talents to the likes of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, as well as the Beast Wars BotCon 2016 story “Dawn of the Predacus. He has also written and coloured his own independent one-shot comic, UNEARTH - https://www.comixology.com/UnEarth/digital-comic/260925
If that news doesn’t leave you full of cheer this festive season, just image JP and Perez, sat in our convention, cooking up mischief….. good isn’t it?
Present no.2? Well that is the announcement of our first voice actor guest for TFNation 2017. Expect that gift to be flying your way, on 1st January.
Further transmissions to follow.
Where all are one
Your road to TFNation 2017 just got real.
This will be a longer and more detailed post than usual, because we have a lot of information to convey, and we want to do this as clearly as possible. Over the next few weeks, we will be releasing more posts on this topic, to answer any questions that arise.
OVERVIEW: TFNATION 2017 TICKET RELEASE SCHEDULE
11th January 2017 – We will announce our updated ticket pricing for 2017.
18th January 2017 - We will announce prices of the TFNation allocation of Hilton hotel rooms, along with advice on booking your stay at the Hilton, or elsewhere.
1st February 2017 - We will release TFNation 2017 tickets for general sale. (Exact time to be confirmed nearer the date).
Applications for The Forge and for other events such as our Cosplay competition will be announced at a later date. Likewise, volunteer applications shall be dealt with later.
TICKET TYPES AND PRICES
After our first year, we have looked at our ticketing structure and made some adjustments, based on attendee feedback.
WEEKEND TICKETS will still afford access to the entire convention from Friday 11th to Sunday 13th August, with entry times to be confirmed. This includes access to the Saturday night event. A weekend ticket is the ONLY ticket which will grant you access to the Friday programme and the Saturday night event. Weekend tickets also give you earlier access to the trading hall on both SATURDAY and SUNDAY.
DAY TICKETS will be available from the first day of sales. This year we will be introducing a SATURDAY ticket as well as the SUNDAY ticket. Day tickets will allow you access to the hall and convention activities, with a delayed entry time (compared to the weekend ticket), on either SATURDAY or SUNDAY. They will NOT grant access to the Friday programme or the Saturday night event.
To clarify, FRIDAY is a non-trading day and we will NOT be releasing day tickets for this date. Access to Friday’s convention events will be for weekend ticket-holders only.
We will be expanding the age range for free child tickets, allowing more adults (the big kids) the chance to bring their families with them. Further details to follow.
Due to the impact of Brexit (many of our guests and suppliers are based overseas) as well as our desire to implement more ideas, we will be amending our adult ticket prices. As a fully registered UK company, we have to ensure we are run efficiently… but as members of the community ourselves, we’d rather let you know that there will be a price adjustment ahead of time.
USING THE TFNATION SITE TO BOOK TICKETS
This section is incredibly important, so please read it carefully.
IF YOU ARE NEW TO THE TFNATION SITE, you simply need to head over to www.tfnation.com on release day, to book your tickets. Once your payment is received, the website will automatically create an account for you, to make the process easier for you in the future.
IF YOU HAVE AN EXISTING PROFILE, please sign in and check your information is up to date BEFORE release day. If you cannot remember your password then there is an option to reset it.
PLEASE NOTE – everybody who booked a ticket to TFNation 2016 should already have a website profile. We strongly recommend that you go to the website NOW, to check that you know your log in details. If you have forgotten your log in, the TFNation Tech-Bots will have more opportunity to help you now, than if you wait until the date tickets go on sale, when our team will be incredibly busy.
The following issues were all experienced by attendees last year, in the months after booking tickets:
1) Signed up under a fake name (to preserve identity) and then forgot fake name meaning they could no longer access the website.
2) Booked ticket under a friend’s profile then forgot which friend or assumed they had booked themselves.
3) Used parental email (for security) and then forgot their details.
4) Changed email server due to house/job changes, but did not update TFNation with their new email address.
If you think any of these issues may apply to you, we advise you to try to log in as soon as possible.
Remember, if you cannot retrieve your log in details, the TFNation Tech-Bots can assist. We simply ask that you please do you best to minimise their workload, by checking BEFORE ticket release day. If you fail to check your details now, and then find you cannot log in on release day, you may well miss out on that all important hotel room.
Once an attendee has purchased their ticket, they will then be directed to a TFNation section of the Hilton’s booking website. We will explain this process (and hotel room prices) in more detail closer to the time.
We will also provide information on alternative accommodation as we expect the Hilton allocation to sell out very quickly.
GUESTS, EVENTS AND ACTIVITIES
Over the next 9 months, we will be rolling out more guests, including voice actors and other notable members of the Transformers community. Along with this, we will also be providing more information on the convention’s structure, as well as guides to travel and advice on how you can submit your own ideas for TFNation 2017.
Welcome to the Seibertron.com Twincast / Podcast and our final episode of 2016! Take a look back fondly or with disdain on 2016 with your host ScottyP, along with Counterpunch, xRotorstormx, Megatronus, RodimusConvoy13, and Razorclaw0000.
Next, we revisit with the Combiner Wars box sets - G2 redecos and brand new figures. Help us explore a tale of two Computrons, dissect the success or failure of the G2Redecos and discuss the impact on the collector.
Missing from photo: Betatron
Continuing the retrospective, we sing the praises (again) of Titan's Return and Takara's Generations line equivalents. We discuss the steady march towards quality and a "return to form" after the years of almost successes. Get a break down of which figures to use for IDW, which to use for G1 nostalgia, and much more!
Missing from photo: A dry eye in the house
Next, we swing around to the Masterpiece line and its push towards perfect screen accuracy. The cast discuss if this has been a turn off or turn on for the line. Some have abandoned it all together, while others have been re-energized. Can we come to a consensus? Is all hope lost? Should more monkeys have maces? (Of course, the answer to the last question is a resounding yes!)
Missing from photo: All my money
Rounding out the toy talk, can a heroic few members of the cast turn the tide of the fandom's apathy towards Robots in Disguise and Transformers Adventure? After an incredible year with excellent molds, we call out some of our favorite, discuss the show, and make a desperate plea for our listeners to try it out and enjoy some fun!
Missing from photo: A vat of butter
Exhausted from toy talk, the team swings around to Hasbro's many cross-media offerings, including the Machinima Combiner Wars series, apps and games like Earth Wars, and IDW's very successful comic series. We focus on IDW's impact on the brand, including characterizations and mainstreaming of comic only characters like Rung. We discuss the highlights of the soft conclusions of "Transformers" and "More than Meets the Eye", the deeper mythos being built, and whether that is an enticement or deterrent to new fans.
Missing from photo: An unbroken heart
After gushing over the mainline comics for a bit, we steel ourselves to give a levelheaded retrospective of Revolution. We discuss the one shots as well as the ongoing and the successes and mistakes the cross event provided.
Missing from photo: Cohesive art direction
Of course, superlatives are always a fun exercise for our trusty crew, and no YIR show would be complete without them. Listen in and we list out our favorite products, personal moments, and toy/product additions from all corners of the multiverse.
So you guys want to Space Galaxy Destroy things, in space!? Yeah!
Finally, the podcast closes out with the crew's predictions for 2017, resolutions, and well wishes from the Seibertron.com staff as a whole! Thanks for an awesome 2016, and we'll see you on the other side in 2017. Thanks for listening!
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That's right folks, it's time! Fresh off the delivery truck, we bring to you our latest Seibertron.com review: Masterpiece Shattered Glass Optimus Prime! Shattered Glass Prime is a redeco of the original MP-10 Optimus Prime mold and is based on his Shattered Glass self, as seen in his 2008 Botcon toy and in the Fun Publications comics. He is the first of the Masterpiece Shattered Glass characters, and we are set to take a good look at him below!
Included in this review is that heroic Autobot we all know and love, Cliffjumper, who had the misfortune of meeting up with Shattered Prime. He will be used for comparisons, as well as a little fun right at the end.
Firstly, we'll take a quick look at the box, as it features some really awesome artwork of Prime gunning down some poor soul, along with a bio introducing us to this Shattered Prime.
Next up, we will start off with the Truck mode. The truck mode is your standard cab-over that we are all used to, but it has some very nice detailing for the shattered glass version. Shattered Prime's twisted phrase of "Till all are gone!" is printed nicely on the left side right above the drivers door, and it stands out really nice. The silver stripe helps break up the marvelous purple cab nicely along with the side view mirrors.
There are also some very nice green highlights where the roof lights and headlights are, and they stand out against that purple, along with the yellow windows. The broken passenger side window is a nice touch too.
At first, I wasn't too sure about the dull gray used for the grill and smokestacks, but you know what: it works. That muted color gives him a nice "dark" vibe, fitting for the Shattered destructor. The blue used for his legs/back part of the truck is also really cool, and it really stands out with the gray used.
Overall, we have a really strong truck mode that ticks all the boxes save "chrome" but Nemesis Prime covers that better than this guy would have.
Up next, we'll look at that marvelous trailer. Now, Shattered Prime only ever had a trailer in a single lithograph. He never had one in the comics or with any previous toy. This figure, however, decides to include one, and it is a trailer that I really do like.
The trailer itself is cast in a nice rich black color. It is so rich, you can see my reflection taking some of the pictures in it below. The trailer then has a deep purple set of stripes running down the side, the purple of which is beautiful and stands in shining contrast to the black. The giant purple Autobot symbols also really stand out and make the outside of this trailer really pop.
Lest we forget, this trailer, along with the actual figure, have nice chrome wheel rims, and they all stand out so well. That is part of what is making this figure so awesome: the colors all mesh and pop so well, no matter where you go! The underneath part of the trailer uses that same gray that Prime uses for the grill, and it works. Had they cast this in chrome, this trailer would work great for Nemesis Prime as well.
Take a peak!
As this is the first Masterpiece I have ever handled, he feels really big and heavy. There is some good weight to guy! The Transformation is also a blast and a half, with some small bits but so many large bits that flip around in genius style. Definitely one of the best transformations I have ever handled.
And then, we get to the robot mode. Geeze oh man, does this guy rock in robot mode! All the gray is now given the chance to shine, and it does so wonderfully, contrasting against that purple and dark blue and bringing the whole figure together. The yellow windows now seem so muted against that purple, but it only helps bring out the evil in the guy. His new dark helmet and red eyes are also pretty sweet, though I wish they could have made the head a little bit more sinister.
While we're at it, let's get that trailer standing up! The trailer unfolds as the original did, but it feel so much more sinister and cool looking in black and grey, with some silver and dark blue in there to break it all up. The combat deck stands up and the little cockpit area, complete with evil green glass, folds out. This thing looks so goofily hardcore and awesome. I am very glad they included it in the set.
Plus, given how often he gets into fights, Prime needs that repair bay a good bit I'm guessing.
As you can see inside the trailer, there are some accessories that we need to take a look at. First up is the Matrix he comes with, which is die cast and it feels marvelous. The silver, gold, and rich blue center make this matrix a beauty to behold, as seen with some natural light shining through below.
He also contains 2 weapons: his ion blaster and evil ax. The blaster is cast in that gray that Prime's thighs and grill are cast in, and even has a little silver paint in the back. This, along with the head, are the 2 parts that I am a bit disappointed in, as the blaster feels a bit too dull, like they could have done a bit more to it and made it pop more.
Now the ax, that thing is a winner. The green is the same as the canopy on the combat deck, and it really does shine. The shade of green screams "evil" and it is so big and bad looking that I am keeping it on his hand almost all the time. It is perfect weapon that Prime never used but always needed.
Check these things out!
Also to add, we have a size comparison with ole Classics Cliffjumper, along with a slightly different pose of Prime with all his gear:
In conclusion, I love this guy. As my first Masterpiece, he is a joy to behold and own, and I would highly recommend him to anyone who may be interested. Shattered Glass is a special and unique part of the Transformers we love, and hopefully this guy is an indication that there are more Shattered Masterpieces headed out way. He is outstanding and is worthy of being a masterpiece.
And, to wrap things up, check out a few special poses below that those who have seen or read anything Shattered Glass may recognize. Thank you to Transgeek2345 for the video where I was able to obtain these comic images
As the end of their licence-holding comes to a close, the Transformers Collectors' Club has posted about their Christmas sale via board envoy TF_JW, featuring items from the store such as BotCon exclusives, membership incentives, subscription figures and more. Check it all out here!
Hello Club -
I hope all of you have a joyous Holiday Season and Merry Christmas! Our Christmas Sale is starting today! If you would like delivery before Christmas, you need to order by the 13th.
Many quantities are limited and when they are gone that's it.
The sale will run through the end of the month so that you can spend your Christmas cash on your favorite Transformers item! Check it out today!
We received a couple of notifications from fellow Seibertronians, including voice actor Jon Bailey and user Sabrblade, about the soon to be disbanded Transformers Collectors' Club and their pre-Black Friday sale, including figures left in their store from their years of activity (BotCon 2016 too). If you're still looking for some of those, this may be the right time to purchase! Head over here to browse the sale.
Hello Transformers Collectors' Club Members,
In order to help you not feel so pressed for everything after Thanksgiving, we are starting our Black Friday Sale this Friday at approximately 10am Central Time. There will be some great items on sale AND some DOOR BUSTER pricing on a number of items with LIMITED QUANTITIES at that low price. Make sure you check it out THIS Friday at the club store!
Fellow Seibertronian Munkky has received the latest Takara Tomy Transformers Unite Warriors UWEX Lynxmaster set, and as we had yet to see any proper in hand images of SkyLynx, Hound, Wheeljack, Trailbreakercuttersomething, but most of all Ratchet - which was only available in the US via the BotCon 2016 custom class - has shared some images with all of us. Check them out below, including the box art and a one piece by Hayato Sakamoto (of the Legends comics)!
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