Saturday 4 July 2020

JP Earthrise Starscream unboxing and mini-review

I cracked after seeing a picture of Starscream, Thundercracker and Skywarp on twitter.  I bought Earthrise Starscream… Dammit.

My initial plan was to wait for Skywarp.  His lavender/black combination is just too beautiful and he is by far my favourite seeker.  I also had little interest in Starscrem because really the design doesn't look all that much of an improvement over the old  Classics/Henkeihenkei mould.  But I cracked and bought it. Dammit.

I also thought I would document the opening of it because the previous two Earthrise figures I’ve gotten haven’t had the decoder piece in them.  I though, perhaps I lost it during the process of opening them.  HLJ lists them as having the decoder, however the Japanese box which lists what’s inside did not have it listed.  TF wiki say all Earthrise has decoders. I dispute that. 
On top of that due to the global stock thing (TT and HB releasing the same exact same figures), I thought perhaps people aren’t getting the JP versions when the HB ones are the same and usually released before TT do.  So here we go.

Tets' Toys
The box is (underneath) the same as the Hasbro one.  TT slap a sticker over the text at the bottom indicating the toys name in Japanese script as well as the series numbering.

The  back is the same, and again there is a Japanese Sticker over the (I think) multi language blurb.

These two boxes are interesting.  The one on the left tells you what’s inside:

  • Starscream Body
  • Instruction manual

Interestingly usually the weapons are included in this.  Apparently Starscream’s null rays are part of his body.  Despite the fact they have to be removed for transformation.

The box on the right tells you what the Starscream body is made from. (various Plastics)

No alterations to this side of the box.  I’m not so fond of that artwork.  Colours are off and he looks a bit chubby.  The artwork for the others I have, (Cliffjumper and Ironworks) look pretty cool.

The top also has no changes to it.

Forgot to add the bottom, so here it is (actually this is the bottom of Cliffjumper's, but they have the same thing on them):

Opening him up.

Starscream has one elastic thing holding his legs in place.
In the box is the Map (Background cardboard) insert, instructions and Starscream.  No decoder to be seen, however there has been no mention of the map/decoder etc.

The instructions look to be the same as a the HB ones.  There are two stickers placed on the front page and the final section.  I think it’s pretty obvious where.

After I got to the point, I double checked the now emptied box and back of insert just to see if there was anything left.  Nope, no decoder to be seen anywhere.  The insert still has the red ink on it, so if I had one, I could use it. 

And that is my unboxing of Starscream.

Now for the toy

So far my impressions of the actual toy have been underwhelming.  The jet mode looks fantastic from the top, the bottom… not so much.  I have an odd feeling that the blue of the tail fins is a little off.  If it is, it’s not that big of a deal.  I do like that the cockpit has a little chair sculpted in and the yellow window is spot on!

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Although mine has uneven paint applications  in the edges of the wings where the white meets the end of the wings.  The face  sculpt is nice, but I really dislike the gap above his pectoral area, it looks like his shoulder section just floats.


The general overall sculpt has too much detail left on it.  Too many Greebles as the kids say, however the Null Ray blasters look really nice and are compatible with Siege blast effects.  He looks pretty chunky and boring from the back.  And a little bit thin in the wings but I do appreciate the hinge that allows you angle the wings back for robot mode adds to his dynamic look.

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The tail fins look huge on his feet and I really dislike his “pee flap” groin I dislike this option generally, but Starscream’s seems to really bother  me more than other figures with it.  You can simulate hoody style pocket though, so that’s cool.  The Pee flap also allows lot of flight stand display options, I do like this aspect.

Proud of the pee flap!earthriseStars (4)

Articulation is pretty good although not exceptional and not a huge jump over the Classics figure.  Due to transformation he lacks a waist swivel.  His ankle tilts are super nice.  He also has lost of areas for extra weapons to be mounted, I do kind of look forward to beefing him up with Brunt and others.  Although he has a cut looking line for it, he lacks  thigh swivel.  Luckily though his hips are pretty good, so you don’t really miss it.

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The arms do some interesting compacting up for jet mode, but everything else is a copy of the classics toy.  I was initially sad at the lack of round afterburners, but I kind of dig these new rectangular ones now.  And finally, a comparison photo with the only other Starscream toy I have handy.

So overall while I like the jet mode, am kind of disappointed with the robot mode, I have to conclude that this toy isn’t terrible.  It’s problem is it’s just too similar (aside from size) to the Classics toy we got, almost  14 years ago.

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