Wednesday, 25 November 2015

REVIEW: FansToys FT-11 Spotter

NOTE: This review was originally published on 25th November 2015 on my Facebook page.

Not so long ago, building a Masterpiece collection with the occasional third party addition was a relatively simple affair. TakaraTomy seemed to be working to a relatively slow burn of only a couple of new moulds every year, and these were typically fairly easy to predict as the majority of releases were G1 season 1 Autobots, an intent which was pretty much confirmed by communication from the designers themselves alongside the release of MP-12 Sideswipe.

Sunday, 22 November 2015

REVIEW: X-Transbots MX-II Andras

NOTE: This review was originally published on 22nd November 2015 on my Facebook page.

X-Transbots have an interesting history as producer of so-called third party Transformers figures. Originally kicking off proceedings with their Powerglide homage, Glider, and subsequent repaints in 2012, they then spent the next few years producing a couple of upgrade kits for G1 combiners before eventually coming to everyone's attention in 2014 with releases like Krank and Ollie, representations of Huffer and Wheelie respectively. Despite a relatively slow burn in terms of schedule, a number of these releases were met with reports of variable quality control (or QC), with many even going as far as to say that they were simply not up to snuff, and like their apparent sister company KFC, they earned a decidedly mixed reputation.

Friday, 13 November 2015

REVIEW: Maketoys MTRM-02Y Gundog

NOTE: This review was originally published on 13th November 2015 on my Facebook page.

Maketoys have a long-standing reputation for quality releases and a highly loyal fanbase. However, being a Masterpiece collector myself, I had long admired their work only from afar, merely hearing great tales of their top-notch quality without ever experiencing it with my own hands. That all changed when they unveiled their new RE:Master Series - their own take on supposedly Masterpiece-style figures intended to scale and blend with the TakaraTomy official line. I eagerly ordered Cupola, their take on the Headmaster, Chromedome, and was not disappointed; everything I had heard from Maketoys fans was true! This was confirmed with Visualizers, their next release, and it's only made me more excited for the future of this line.

Wednesday, 4 November 2015

REVIEW: TakaraTomy Masterpiece MP-25 Tracks

NOTE: This review was originally published on 4th November 2015 on my Facebook page.

MP-25 in the TakaraTomy Masterpiece line was a highly anticipated reveal. Speculation was rife as to which Transformer would fill the spot, as many felt that the number 25 would be reserved for a popular or prominent character from the G1 canon, which led to rumours about it being coveted names such as Megatron version 2, or even Galvatron. So, when Tracks was revealed, it's fair to say that many were initially displeased, writing him off as (at best) a B-list character, who was 'undeserving' of being placed so far up the list of priority when it came to choosing potential Masterpiece figures. Add to this that the initial reveal of Tracks as MP-25 was a rather unfortunate & poor quality prototype photo, it's safe to say that this figure's journey to arrival has had its ups and downs. Further photos only compounded the dislike, as they often made the prototype look overly skinny, or not particularly well put together.