Tuesday, 19 May 2015

Alpha Bravo

Hasbro meeting:
Right we need to think of a name for this new toy!
Roger that Red leader.
You need to finish with over, over.
Oh, Ok. um... Over?
That's better, what about this characters name? Over
Well, He's a flying vehicle, since we're using this army speak, and I want a coffee, let's call him Alpha Bravo. Over
Roger that
And that's how he got his name. True story

So lets check out old Alpha Bravo.

Actually since this is the first I have of this series, a quick check of the box as well while I’m at it.  Alpha Bravo here came with a collector card.  There is also a version of the Combiner Wars that comes with a print of an IDW comic as well.

The first thing I noticed was the package is quite a lot smaller than I thought it would be.  Kind of a nice change, since I’ve always thought that Transformers packaging was too large.

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It’s interesting to see that they have an “Authentic Transformers" logo thing on the bottom.  I put the comic version of Off Road with AB, so it’s easy to see the subtle differences.  Off Road’s blister card it slightly bigger.  Also, no mention of the Official Transformers Collectors Club.  Hmmm.  When did they get kicked off the boxes I wonder?

Not much of a bio going on, but some nice large artwork going on there in the background very cool.  If I remember correctly, the artwork is from the Transformers Legends mobile game.  Found that game very boring personally.  However one little  downside to the artwork I noticed.
Due to it being blown up, I see that it is has become rather pixelated.  Oh my!
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He comes with a card, which has the same artwork.  Nice, but the back is completely wasted.  They could have easily slapped some stats on the back of that sucker.
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The back of the box has a really brief bio on it though in fact so brief it’s just his fucntion, no stats anywhere.  Sadly it’s not half as exciting as the prose that came with Off Road and his comic book.  Once you rip off the bubble it has a nice x-ray view of some of the other figures in the Combiner Wars line.  A nice touch and very cool!
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Anyway, enough fawning over the box, lets looks at AB.  He's packaged in Robot mode, which seems to be the current way that Hasbro likes to do things.  I don’t mind, as cool looking robot is more eye catching than some random vehicle.

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He looks fairly average I though when I first got him out of the box and had a bit of trouble getting used to him.  I am glad to say that the more I messed about with him, he became more fun! 

The chest looks fairly plain and seems to be softly sculpted.  I will say though, they have managed to do well with the combiner joint, which is the grey plastic that his head connected to.  It’s sculpted well enough to look like it is part of his chest, despite the different colour.

Ok, so let’s have a look at his face.  I actually really like his face, although it does give me a rather Combaticon Vortex vibe.  It is very nice.  Also as an added bonus, he can super look up, like he’s flying!!

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Such a good range of motion available to him!  He can even cock his head.

If you feel so inclined, you can swap the head with the joint to make a drone head if you s feel inclined.

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Never mind the head in the stomach ladies and gentlemen.
His feet and legs are super wide and the way the nose of the chopper folds onto the sides, means he can hold many poses you wouldn’t think he could.
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I really love that AB is totally armed to the teeth.  The missiles on his arms look great just by themselves hanging there.  On top of that he comes with a rifle and the Superion foot/hand gun majigger.

The rifle just looks friggin sweet.  On one side that is.  The inside isn’t quite as sexy, but the side that is sexy… DAYUM, I love it!  There’s like an ammo clip feeding into the gun.
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The hand foot gun thing is OK, but as a weapon I don’t really  dig it all that much.  It just looks too large for Alpha Bravo. From below it looks reasonably mini-gun-ish, but from the top, it’s just a strange thing… I’ll just be leaving mine off in a bag somewhere methinks.
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Oh and did I mention that the arm missiles just looks awesome?!?  Because they do!
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While I have that back view there, I might as well mention that I hate the way the propelors store in robot mode.  They just really hang there in a not very exciting way.  If you don’t angle the connection piece the propellors are connected to they don’t stay up very well.  Luckily the rest of the robot mode is pretty good.

Oh and another use for the gestalt combiner joint…..
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Lots of fun to be had with robot mode.

Let’s move onto VEHICLE MODE!
He’s a chopper.

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I must admit that I really like the white plastic.  It’s very nice and white. Um Bright?  There are two things that really bug me though.  The first is the chopper length, it just looks super long.  I’m not sure if the blades are placed too far forward, or if it’s an optical illusion caused by the arms hanging off the side.  The missiles do cover the hands fairly well though I must admit.  Shame about the shoulders.

Overall sculpting is pretty good.  Although there is no landing gear.  Check it out.  Underneath  there is some obvious robot parts, but the bottom of the chopper has some nice sculpting on it and the rifle actually looks not bad when mounted on the side port.
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The foot/hand gun doesn’t get along so well. 
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It just kind of hangs off the bottom and looks very silly.  That pretty much covers the chopper.  I don’t really like it that much personally it just looks so wrong to me, mainly due to the length.

Alpha Bravo being a new member of the Aerialbots can become an arm or a leg for Superion, or whomever else if you so require.  Let’s have a look shall we?

This was my first general idea of how big the Combiner Wars gestalts are going to be.  I have to say, I was pretty impressed.  He makes a nice enough leg and arm and is suitably large for me to be excited about more gestalts.  I kind of called it on my Bruticus review that with a bit more work, they could work well and I’ll have to wait until Takara release Menasor to see how we go, but I am pretty excited just from this one piece.

First up, Leg Mode!

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I like the way the rifle can be mounted on him, for a little bit more bulk or blammo.  The propellers just hang there looking a little bit cool, but I suspect they’ll get in the way somewhere.

Next up.  ARM MODE!
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I really like this arm mode.  It’s very nice indeed, finally the foot/hand gun makes it’s presence known as a hand and looks pretty good with guns on the knuckles. Yay.  The hips of the robot become the elbow and the waist becomes and elbow swivel.  This time though, the wrist missiles get in the way of a full elbow bend however it can easily be worked around.  Oh It’s also remarkably large!

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Why hello there Miku!

Man that looks super nice!  So in the end, I became to really like Alpha Bravo.  I am quite glad to say that his robot mode and limb mode manage to make up for the can’t-put-my-finger-on-why wierdness with the vehicle mode.  The very good balance and poseability of this guy will totally win you over.  Although I probably wouldn’t bother with this guy as Blades for the Protectobots, but I don’t feel bad that I got him.  He made a nice introduction toy to the Combiner Wars for me.

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