Posts tagged with "straxus" - 1
Posted May 4, 2012 at 12:15 am
Out of all of this year's BotCon toys, Shattered Glass Straxus was the only one I got to find out about at the convention itself.  All the others were leaked via lists or stolen samples, and the identity of SG Longarm was revealed officially the Wednesday morning before I left for the con. And so in a really oldschool way, I got to find out what a BotCon toy was when I arrived, like it was 1998 or something up in this shiz!

SG Straxus was the "attendee freebie," meaning if you buy the immense box set and arrive at the convention to pick it up like you're supposed to, you get a free extra guy.  If you buy the set and don't attend, no dice.  I was kind of surprised to learn that the freebie was a mold not seen elsewhere in the set!  The freebie tends to be something else used elsewhere but redecoed, like one of the guys with a new head so they get a second use out of the new head.  No, this was a mold unique to the set!  Sweetness.

If you've been reading my website for any amount of time, you know my fondness for Straxus.  He was a comic book-only character for decades until he finally got toy-ified in 2010.  I'm happy, then, that he gets a toy of his mirrorverse self.  I kind of feel like it legitimizes him more.  He's an increasingly important guy!  And while this weekend was the first time we heard about his SG figure, we were introduced to the idea of an SG Straxus in the various SG prose stories long ago.  And so it's also nice to have a toy of that guy.  All we knew about him was that he was a poet, which is, as you'd imagine, the opposite of his "normal" self, which was a megalomaniacal despot.  So, woo, poet Transformer toy!   With a battle pick axe!

The colors on this guy are the icing on the cake.  See, long ago Germany published some KIND OF REALLY BAD versions of the original Marvel Comics.  Their covers were on crack, full of art swipes and insane color choices.  And one of these insane color choices/art swipes was the floating head of Straxus decked out in gold, black, and bright green.

You can connect the dots.

We're running out of wacky things to reference, guys.

I'm pretty happy.
Posted November 26, 2010 at 12:16 pm
Man, on no other day I am more glad that I'm out of retail.  Have a conglomeration of fun toy photos.

Here's Straxus with Jazz's speakers clipped onto him. Didn't I tell you these speakers are awesome? They spread their awesomeness around.

And here's Skullgrin and Straxus's clip-on weapons doing their magic with Thunderwing. His gun has gone from "over-the-top" to "fucking ridiculous."

Posted August 11, 2010 at 2:01 am
Big feet mean a big, uh, fusion cannon.

My Straxus wasn't shipped alone.  His new casemate is War for Cybertron Megatron.  This is funny to me, because as I mentioned yesterday, he and Straxus shared bodies for most of the comics, and some believe it was actually Straxus-in-Megatron that became Galvatron in 2005!  So, hell, maybe my new Megatron toy is Straxus, too.

The previous two WFC figures, Optimus and Bumblebee, were kind of annoying messes.  Megatron thankfully does not follow this pattern.  In fact, he's pretty friggin' great.  He's by far the best of the video-game based dudes so far.  (With only Soundwave and Cliffjumper, that we know of, to eventually follow.)

It's pretty neat how he works.  In robot mode, he doesn't even feel like a Transformer.  Instead, he feels and plays like a cohesive robot action figure.  He seals up perfectly, with practically no visible transformation joints.  This might mean that his transformation is going to be on the pathetic side, but this isn't the case.  He splits up and folds into himself pretty amazingly.  Sure, his tank mode is really made up, which helps, but it's not like it looks like a Megatron robot rolling around on his stomach or anything.  His robot mode form is well hidden.  In fact, most of it is hidden beneath his fusion cannon and the undersides of his feet.  His forearms split open and form treads in a way not really seen before.

The filename for this image is "megstank." What an embarrassing website domain name that would be!

The forearm transformation is one of the few weak links, however.  They're not very sturdy in either vehicle mode (you can also fold them under the chassis to make a hover-tank).  Another is the missile launcher button placement on the cannon.  It's right above the connection point for securing the weapon to the arm, so if you want to apply the right kind of force to the weapon to snap it on, you definitely have to push down on the button.  I've lost the missile so many times already.  At the moment, I keep it in my pants pocket.  (I should make sure I find a safer place for it.)

Anyway, these grumbles aside, he's fantastic.  I've extolled the glory of open-sculpted palms before, but Megatron's are the best I've seen.  They're sculpted perfectly for aiming and firing his cannon arm.  They're in that relaxed pose you'd expect, with the cascadingly-curled digits.  It helps the toy come alive.
Posted August 10, 2010 at 2:01 am
Thank god there are so few big-name early-G1 Decepticons.  Once you pump out Megatron and the Seekers, maybe a Triple Changer or two, and Devastator, sure, maybe fit in a Ravage somewhere... you start running out of options, you know?  So on the third round of Generation 1 Dudes Recreated Toyline, you're gonna have to start getting creative.

Drop and slurp, fanboys.

So say hello to Straxus.  Okay, his toy's called Darkmount, after his fortress, because of some trademark trouble, but who the fuck cares.  It's fucking Straxus, god dammit. Jesus Christ.  Fucking.  Straxus.  The ferocity of my boner is incalculable.

Even though he's twenty-five years old, Straxus has never gotten a toy before.  This is his first.  Back in 1985, the Marvel Comics showed us a peek at what life was like on Cybertron.  And it was pretty shitty there, if you can imagine.  And the shittiest place was Polyhex, particularly its capital fortress Darkmount where Lord Straxus ruled.  You know what he liked to do with his day?  Yell at people and throw them into the smelting pools.  And because that wasn't enough Throwing People Into Smelting Pools, he had all his dudes round up everyone they could find so that they could also get thrown into the smelting pools.  He was an unstable, contrary dictator who could get his way simply because he was bigger and meaner than everyone else.  If the Space Bridge was malfunctioning, and marching guys into it to die wasn't actually solving the problem, well, who cares, send more guys into there.  Maybe eventually one of them would magically fix it by walking into it and dying.  He had better things to do, like throw people into smelting pools.

He was pretty fucking great.

Beware his metal palm tree!

But he was only there for Blaster to kill him.  He wasn't a toy.  He wasn't somebody that Hasbro wanted to sell.  He filled a story need.  So he was terrible and horrible, and at the end of his second issue he got to die.  That was all he was fated to do.

Yet it wasn't the end, weirdly enough.  Simon Furman, the Marvel UK writer, was trying to weave stories in and around the US material.  So he brought Straxus back as, well, a head.  A head in a jar.  And so for a while Straxus ran things even though he was just a friggin' head.  Even Megatron showed up to Cybertron and was bossed around by this guy.  Straxus's balls, even though they were severely fried and probably floating somewhere in unspace, were absolutely huge.  He talked in his creepy font as a head in a jar and told Megatron to bring him a friggin' sammich.

Look at the size of that cockpit. He's huge.

Anyway, long story short, Straxus tried to steal Megatron's body, but things got confused, and maybe Straxus was Megatron after that or maybe he wasn't, and maybe Straxus was even the Megatron who eventually became Galvatron in the movie.  But that's not important.

What's important is Fucking Straxus Toy.

Straxus transformed once in the original comics.  He was a flying cannon thing, akin to Galvatron's alt-mode.  The toy gives him an Earth mode that evokes it closely enough.  It's a half-track tank!  (Or a self-propelled cannon, if you want to get fancy.)  And if that's not close enough, it has a third mode.  Rotate the turret around and open the base of the tank into a tripod, and he's an artillery platform.  Pretend it can fly.

Pick it up, fly it around, and go "fwoooosh!"

That's not all that's going on.  Starting with Recon Ironhide, a live-action film-style toy, some Transformer figures have sculpted bars and rods on their surfaces so that various weapons can clip onto them interchangeably.  Straxus comes with three such weapons, and they can move around to various points on his body.  Or you can swap them with any of the weapons that come with other contemporary, compatible figures.

But that's just scenery.  The real deal is the robot mode.  I can't believe the proportions on it.  They're so perfect.  He has this giant, broad chest that looks like it was carved out of something bigger than God.  Powerful arms with big meaty fists sprout out of the shoulders.  When he stands, he looks like he's a big wall of robot, as it should rightly be.  Too often the robotic proportions of a design are lost in the actual toy due to transformation needs.  Not here.  Straxus is built like Straxus.

It's too bad he's just a Deluxe.  Deluxe is the only size class that Generations is currently inhabiting, so Straxus didn't really have a choice.  But, really, it's a fucking Straxus, so I think I can deal.  Just don't stand him next to anybody bigger than him.  (For example, I have him up on my desk shelf near BotCon Clench, and that just not flatter Straxus very well, no.)

"None of you guys are Voyagers, right? Good."

I seriously can't get over him.  He has his trademark battle-axe, which he can hold in both articulated hands.  Despite the obvious compromises incurred on his design due to his need for an Earth mode, you can still see all of the little Straxus touches.  The triangles on his chest and legs.  The big round shoulders with the trapezoidal biceps.  The perfectly-sculpted serpentine head.

Oh, sure, he's not a perfect figure.  His transformation sometimes requires objects to clip through each other.  (It's pretty complicated, but only in a moderately annoying way.)  Oh, and the neck on mine is misassembled backwards.  It's barely noticeable and doesn't affect transformation, so it's not a dealbreaker.  If the misassembly's not a widespread problem I'll just buy a second one later.  I need to support Straxus anyway.
Posted August 8, 2010 at 10:12 pm
Personally, I'm just excited that he exists, but I liked the punchline too much.  Ethan is so frustrated.  He shouldn't be!  He's getting some!

(And, really, the whole thing is really Blaster's toy's fault anyway.)
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