Posts tagged with "armada" - 1
Posted January 8, 2023 at 1:00 pm

Hello!  This is attempt #2 at Modern Poseable Hot Shot!  Let's see how this guy does.

See, there's an integral problem with making Armada Hot Shot, But With Joints.  Armada Hot Shot transformed in a certain way that doesn't really.... allow for real arms?  Like, he's a sports car, and his arms are layered on top of his torso, and they really only swung out to the sides because, like... there's no room for additional jointing, and this also means his torso is absolutely flat.  So if you want to give him real arms and a real torso so that he doesn't look like Pancake The Robot Man, you have to... change things?  A lot?  And the more you change things, the less he looks like Hot Shot.  

The first attempt at Armada Hot Shot But With Joints, Universe (2009) Hot Shot, tried to reinvent him pretty hard.  It gave him a vehicle mode that was shaped more like an actual car (an Audi TT to be precise) and it did all sorts of crazy shellformer stuff that resulted in him having arms, sort of.  I mean, sure, he had arms, and those arms articulated... but not with the amount of panels piled on them from every direction.  The toy, despite all its joints, was immobile.  (also the feet were extremely loose, making it difficult to stand the thing, but that's a separate issue)  

And so attempt #2, in all honesty, has a pretty low hurdle to succumb.  Legacy Evolution Armada Hot Shot comes back to do Armada Hot Shot Again.  But good this time, we hope!  And for the most part, it succeeds!  The good news is, its arms are finally absolutely free to move about.  Nothing is attached to them.  If there's panel-y backpack stuff, it's tucked away.  And he's got a waist rotation joint, at long last, which honestly seems like heresy in connection to an Armada Hot Shot toy.  Also unlike the previous new Hot Shot, he's got his axelzooka again (but not geared to a Mini-Con nor does it fire anything).  He's also stolen Jolt's gun one more time, but that's really the cartoon's fault for stealing it first.  His feet do fold out like the original toy's, but there's no chainsaw stuff sculpted on there.  Driving claws?  Sort of.

The downsides are his forearms are a little anemic.  They have to be, because so much is being crammed into that middle section of the car, but the result is a Hot Shot that's not quite his expected silhouette.  He had big punchy arms, and now he doesn't.  The roof of the car, instead of hanging off the underside of his forearms, is now on the back of his legs.  This is out of the way of his arms!  It's not out of the way of his knees, though, and in order to bend those knees more than 30 degrees, you gotta fold those car roof halves out of the way.  (The car windows are still sculpted on the insides of Hot Shot's forearms.)  

But otherwise, hey, yeah, it's finally an Armada Hot Shot that functions well as an action figure.  It's an odd existence, since his entire appearance was originally wholly dependent on being a platform for various gimmickry.  He looks the way he does because the play pattern came first.  But now here's that design but with ankle tilts. 

Something gained, something lost.  

Posted February 27, 2016 at 3:15 am

I was satisfied enough with Hasbro's "Armada Starscream" toy.  I mean, I've gushed about it a few times here before, most recently for "Super Mode"/Thundercracker, so it's clearly a toy I like.  Takara came out with their own version which was much prettier (fairly objectively, even), but what mattered to me at the time was that my toy matched how Starscream appeared in the then-current IDW comic books.  Their Starscream looked like the Hasbro toy.  So. 

Fast forward to now, when I've got Super Mode Starscream and that kitbashed Sunstorm and the upcoming Skywarp and Ramjet.  Those are all painted pretty damn well, and suddenly my Hasbro Armada Starscream looks like the odd guy out.  Long story short, I got the Takara one to hang out with my other versions of the mold.

The Hasbro one can continue being the IDW guy.  The Takara one can be the Unicron Trilogy version of Starscream.  He can hang out with Thundercracker and Skywarp, and maybe Ramjet will come visit occasionally when he blows through the vacation days he's built up with Unicron.

The main difference between the two Starscreams is that Hasbro's (left) is mostly red plastic and Takara's (right) is mostly white plastic.  And then Takara puts all this red and black paint on top of that, while Hasbro kinda just let their toy be, relatively.  

I love this thing.

Posted February 8, 2016 at 9:30 pm

Armada Starscream from earlier in the Generations toyline was a pretty damn good Starscream toy.  It was a new version of... well, Armada Starscream, but shorter and with shoulder joints and you didn't need to have a Mini-Con to make his missiles fire.  It was a joy.  I mean it, it's a great little thing.  So much that when Cheetimus painted one up like Sunstorm I was like YOINK and bought that fucker.  

Well, here comes more!

This is Starscream Super Mode, because way back in Armada, when they redecoed everybody, they made them into upgrades of the same guy rather than new characters.  But Starscream's "super mode" was in Thundercracker's colors, and so when he got upgraded in the cartoon the English version dubbed in a little "I look like Thundercracker!" comment and the toy was sold as Thundercracker.  Otherwise, Starscream in this deco is known as the Starscream who goes total Linkin Park angsty and gets himself disintegrated by Unicron to make Megatron so way sorry for the way he's been a stupid jerk, DAD.  I'm serious, there were so many Linkin Park AMVs.  He tried so hard and got so far, yo.  But in the end?  (he came back as a zombie in the next series and then in the series after that he was totally fine, so... no, it didn't really matter)

But hell yeah I'd buy a Starscream Super Mode or Thundercracker or whoever.  I loved the deco on the original toy, which was certainly inspired by Thundercracker, but took a few left turns.  For example, his eyes had to be silver.  They really had to, to keep the rest of his deco silver where it needed to be silver.  And that plastic sprue was nylon, which is unpaintable.  And so instead of having his face be red-eyes-on-silver-face, Armada Thundercracker was red-face-on-silver-eyes.  Which is, you know, striking.  I'm very upset this did not pay forward in later Thundercracker toys.  

I do think the deco loses a little something when his blacks are gunmetal instead of black.  But whatcha gonna do.  It's my only sort of not-really complaint.  I like this toy a lot.  Give me more.

(spoilers: we're getting more)

Posted January 27, 2014 at 12:00 pm

I was gonna talk about the new Whirl first, but he kind of snapped his leg off at the knee before I could even get stickers on him.  SO HERE'S ARMADA STARSCREAM, COVERED IN MY TEARS

Armada Starscream is, obviously, a new toy of the Starscream design from Transformers: Armada.  Since these toys are being featured in the IDW Transformers comics that come packaged with every Deluxe, Armada Starscream's design is also now a IDW comics continuity G1 Starscream toy!  For those of you keeping track, this is the second time in a row a Starscream toy that represented Starscream from a different continuity family has been used as a G1 Starscream in this comic.  With both Aligned and the Unicron Trilogy out of the way, once this Starscream also repurposes an Animated or Movie-style version of himself, I think this dude will have collected the whole set.  He will become Meta Starscream, the Allscream, Devourer of Alternate Starscreams.

The toy itself is fantastic.  While it is, broadly, a smaller version of the original Armada Starscream toy but with joints, the sum is more than these parts.  He feels solid and dynamic and feels like he has a presence, and he has more weapons than you expect of a toy in these expensive times.  While the original Armada Starscream would pop off his entire wing to make a sword, this new Armada Starscream hides his (now-translucent) swords behind his wings.  They just fold up and plug into the backs.  He also gets two, instead of just the one.  Also, dude's got double missile launchers.  It's been a while since those were the norm!  They're the push-pressure kind, not the spring-loaded kind, and they sit in his maneuverable shoulder intakes.  Starscream's also got Mini-Con hardpoints on both his forearms and on the back of each of his launchers, as is right and good.  

If you're more discerning about your Starscream purchases, I'd check out this guy.  He's one of the best Starscream toys, I feel.   Or you can wait until we get that Jhiaxus retool out of him we seem to be receiving.  New cockpit, new wings, new tailfins, new head.  When I'm at Toy Fair in a few weeks, I hope we get to see him.

Posted January 5, 2012 at 9:53 pm
I have two to talk about today!  I didn't write up a post for SG Soundwave, since he kind of bugged me.  Conceptually I'd been looking forward to him more than most, if only because I want an up-to-date pal for my SG Ravage, but his execution left me cold.  The head looked off to me, plus the idea that you have to buy his trademark headband separately sounds like an actual strawman scenario someone would cook up to malign Fun Publications.  There may be very good reasons for it, but there's still this nasty taste in my mouth.

Today's SG Treadshot reveal makes up for it.  My favorite things in every BotCon set tend to be the absolutely insane toy nobody else would have thought of or asked for in a million years.  Treadshot is this toy.  Waaaaaay back when, there was a toy in Armada called Side Swipe.  It was a very terrible-looking toy.  It remains a punchline amongst Transformers fans.  And because Hasbro loves us very much, they redecoed it not once but twice, and just barely.  They changed the blue once to maroon and once to purple.  These were not desired figures.

But the maroon one's name was Treadshot.

I have no idea what the thought process was that led FP to creating this figure, but Shattered Glass Treadshot is colored like Armada Side Swipe but with Treadshot's hood stripe.  It uses the Jazz mold's alternate head which hasn't been used yet at retail.  And it's pretty damn glorious.  I don't know why it exists, but now that it does I am super glad.  It is craaaaaaazy.  It makes the whole BotCon charade feel less cynical.

(Plus there's this part not-so-deep inside of me that wants to believe that the original Universe Treadshot and this SG Treadshot are the exact same dude.  Universe Treadshot was from a random, unspecified universe, and he was packaged versus an unspecified Ultra Magnus who seemed like kind of a tool.  Plus his symbol was the same maroon as the rest of him, making it neeearly SG Decepticon red.  Their stories could easily sync up.  It would delight me to no end to find out this 2003 Universe guy was from the Shattered Glass universe all along.)
Posted April 13, 2010 at 2:01 am
SP! avatar wallpaper

So as we were debuting the new site this weekend, Frumph says to me, hey, guess what, this is awesome.  See all those folks with no avatars?  Well, what if I told you that if you uploaded your own avatars to a certain directory and did some Comicpress magic, they'd be randomly assigned to unavatared users?

So I says, holy balls!

And so after crankin' out a handful every day since then, there are now a total of 24 avatars in the pool.  If you don't have an avatar and you post, you'll get randomly assigned, say, Sodomuffin.  And then every time you post, you'll keep that Sodomuffin avatar.  (... at least until I upload a new image into the pool, which restarts the math and they all get switched around again)

Since I have so many, and I put so much work into them despite being tiny 64x64 things, I thought I'd show them to you big as a wallpaper.  You are also free to crop them out and make your own avatars on other boards, so long as you give me credit.  I am also wondering if maybe I should try to do this a print or a poster or something in the meager number of hours I have remaining before C2E2, but we'll see.

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