Cliffbee.com: G2 Sparkstalker Toy Review

Toy Reviews
Individual Review




Name: Sparkstalker
Series: Generation 2 (non-US)
Allegiance: Decepticon
Function: Sabatuer
Alternate Mode: Insect Monster



MONSTER MODE
Height: 6cm Length: 8.5cm Width: 5cm

   A purple and fluorescent transparent pink insect with fluorescent green wings and mouthparts, Sparkstalker is a rather unsubtle repaint of the G1 toy of the same name. His body, tail and forelimbs are all purple, which hardly makes for a neutral base - especially with the supporting colours we have here. The only subdued colour on this toy is the silver paint used on his eyes - which ends up lost amongst the transparent pink head anyway. Simply put, this colour scheme is nothing short of appalling.

   Why they decided to repaint such a weak toy I'll never work out. It's a very bad insect mode. Aside from the fact there are only four limbs, Sparkstalker has no abdomen other than a forked tail that tapers to two points. There's some vague organic sculpting on his legs, and the back edges of his head, but aside from the mouthparts there's very little here that really defines him as an insect. The front limbs are hooks, and look more like the vestigial wings some flies have than limbs. The wings are straight, angular, affairs, which really ruins the scant organic sculpt here. Not that you really see the sculpt amongst the transparent pink.

   He sort of stands on his hindlimbs with his body sloping upwards. The forelimbs can swing up and down, which is really it for the poseability, although the body can lift up and down, as part of his main gimmick.

   The idea of the Firecons is that you can lift up the legs and roll them along on the belly, and sparks will spurt out of their mouths. Unfortunately the internal gears around which this gimmick revolves wear very easily, leaving the gimmick dead. Sparkstalker's mouth is almost an inch from the spark ejection point anyway, so even if the gimmick works, there's not much action outside of the toy. In keeping with the disaster that is this repaint, the rubber wheel used to activate the spark mechanism is composed of a softer rubber than on the Firecons, making the gimmick harder to activate.

   Originally a bad insect mode, now a bad insect mode that hurts the eyes. There is really nothing positive here save for the comic value of someone actually deciding to release this.

TRANSFORMATION TO ROBOT MODE

   Fold the tail underneath, swing down his head, swing the wingplates down to the sides, revealing the robot head and chest. Straighten his legs and stand him up.

ROBOT MODE
Height: 7.5cm Width: 5.5cm

   Sparkstalker has pink limbs, a pink head with a green face and purple torso. The head is actually a plate inserted into the top of his torso, which is a rectangular block. His face is actually fairly well moulded, with lips, a nose, an eyevisor and even a chin. The green paint is sloppily applied and drowns out the facial detail, which is the only real positive here. The green wings hanging off his arms are horrible, which is I suppose in keeping with the rest of the toy.

   The Firecons had quite possibly the worst robot mode proportions of any Transformers. Ever. Sparkstalker is now a G2 Sparkabot, but his poseability is as bad it was in his Firecon days. The arms are attached to the waist, and of course attach at the wrists. The legs attach to the sides of the central block, sitting directly below his hands, rather than below the torso. The back edge of the animal head sits above the rectangular central block, forming kibble. Rounding all of this out is the fact that's wider than he should be for this height, and wears the wings as arm kibble.

   There is no play value in this mode, other than the urge to grab sunglasses. The colours are bad and the facial paint ruins the facial sculpt, the only possible redeeming feature. The proportions are awful and ... the colours...

VARIATIONS

   A repaint of the Firecon of the same name, Sparkstalker wasn't released in North America - US and Canadian transfans should count their blessings.

OVERALL

   I hope the guy who made the decision to release this toy lost his job. It's _that_ bad. The mould was not something that needed to be done again (luckily they didn't revisit Cindersaur, the worst of the Firecons). Even on a good toy, the pink used would be a bad idea, so here it's just insane. I suppose the upside of this mess is that it's kind of funny that this toy managed to get itself on sale. Sparkstalker is a toy I recommend against spending any money on - 0.5/10

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