Series: BotCon Exclusives
Alternate Mode: Racing Truck
Thanks to fatbot for loaning me Thunderclash for this review
Height: 6cm Length: 14cm Width: 7cm
Am off white souped up racing longnose truck, Thunderclash is a repaint of Energon Rodimus inspired by his G1 namesake. There's crimson painted details on the front and around the edges of the blue painted windows. The grille and sloped roof of the cabin are bronze while the six tyres are black plastic with blue hubcaps. There are various teal polygons ere and there, approximating the simple stickers common in the "European" G1 toys. There's a red stamped Autobot logo on the left fender and a transparent dark blue gun attached to the spoiler . The colours are a fairly loose match for those of the G1 toy, which features a lot more blue, which was two different shades. There's distinct shades of that era here, although the link to Thunderclash is fairly weak.
The cab is a lot bigger than the trailing section, both in height and width, and the front wheels are bigger than the two sets of rear wheels. There are two black jets under the spoiler and in front and a powerlinx port on top of the spoiler where the weapon attaches. Unlike the original Thunderclash toy, there's no trailer here, and no chance of attaching one. There's a spark crystal on the left side spoiler strut - a relic of this mould's Energon origins.
The play value here is fairly straightforward - the gun is actually a missile launcher, and it fires a single transparent blue missile quite well, while the six wheels all roll. The spoiler splits in two for the transformation and tends to split when the truck is handled, which is moderately annoying.
While there are some flaws, this is a good truck mode. It's a fairly significant departure from the original, although the tribute still works despite the divergence. It's a decent mould and racing truck Transformers are quite uncommon. In a perverse kind of way, this alt mode suits the European G1 era, where every second character's bio raved on about how awesome they were.
TRANSFORMATION TO ROBOT MODE
Fairly clever and satisfyingly complex for a deluxe, although not difficult. Flip up the front of the truck to form the robot legs, lift up the roof to form the feet. Straighten the legs out and flip up the kneecaps, fold in the panels behind the smokestacks to form the soles of his feet, and swing out the orange heelspurs. Fold out the waistplate, swing the rear wheels out to either side to form the arms. The head swings up and clicks into position. The forearms have several folding parts, including the fists swapping out for the rockets, which is nifty.
Height: 14cm Width: 13.5cm
Again based on off white, Thunderclash has bronze feet and kneecaps, with the crimson now a fairly minor colour on his legs. There's quite a bit of teal on his groin while the hands are also teal. His head is painted a mid blue with a bronze face and red eyes. There's a small teal flame feature painted on his chest, with an equally small red Autobot logo stamped above this. The colour mapping here is quite close to that of the G1 toy (aside from a lack of red/crimson) here - the tribute is really centred on this mode, and while it's not a perfect match the tribute is a lot more obvious, especially with the flame feature on his chest. The colours used on his head match the original toy very well - to the point where his head looks nothing like that of Rodimus. It's a good colour scheme which makes the tribute really work here.
The chest and waist are hidden in vehicle mode which is a clever feature of this toy's design. The rear wheels are mounted on the large shoulderpads, and the front half of the truck is now the robot boots, with the grille being the kneecaps. The boots are big, and his feet are huge, being the roof and windshield of the truck. The kneecaps are also big, and hide about 2/3 of the thighs. He also has longish forearms and his head looks quite small, but the big arms and legs do work well together.
The head is on a limited ball joint, the shoulders swing and the elbows are ball joints. His hips have double ratcheting joints, the knees bend on single ratcheting joints. Posing the knee joints will leave a gap between the thighs and kneecaps, but you just push the kneecaps it. The giant teal heelspurs mean most poses are stable, and can easily be stowed if you prefer, although this limits his stability in certain poses. Overall he has pretty decent articulation, coupled with the ability hold his missile launcher in either hand this makes for decent play value. And then of course, he can combine with Energon toys to form a larger robot.
The odd proportions and poseability limitations mean this mode's not quite as cool as the truck mode, but the tribute is a lot clearer making this the more satisfying of Thunderclash's modes. The paint job really shines here.
A repaint of Energon Rodimus, as mentioned. Thunderclash shares the mould with Black Rodimus Convoy & Checkpoint.
The truck mode is a good one, even if the tribute is quite weak in that mode. The robot mode is a weaker mode the tribute really works in that mode, making this a good repaint. The original character is fairly obscure since he was never sold in the USA, but this repaint captures the feel of that era very well. While I don't personally like this repaint (not enough red, the shades of blue are off) , I can't fault the effort put into it, and would certainly recommend it to those who enjoy BotCon tribute toys - 7/10