Cliffbee.com: Generations Trailbreaker Toy Review

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Individual Review




Name: Trailbreaker (officially Trailcutter for legal reasons)
Series: Generations
Allegiance: Autobot
Alternate Mode: 4x4



4x4 MODE
Height: 6cm Length: 10.5cm Width: 6cm

   A black 4x4 with red & yellow stripes on the door, gold headlights and black tyres. Trailbreaker has colourless windows while the "camper" at the back is windowless. The grille is silver along with twin guns on top of the roof and a radar array above them. There's a red & silver Autobot logo stamped on the hood, rounding out a simple, very black colour scheme. While there's notably less silver than on his G1 toy (and of course no chrome) and the windows are no longer blue, this is clearly Trailbreaker. For the most part this is a good colour scheme, but I wish they'd painted the taillights.

   Trailbreaker is quite a small deluxe, and it's noticeable in both modes. This truck doesn't scale well alongside most other Generations deluxes. While I'm not especially happy about this, it's a cost thing & I can't hold it against the designers; after all this is only the third ever toy of this character (and the second is a legends toy). What does bother me about this mode is the rather jarring radar array sitting on top of the vehicle. Sure it's not at the level of Energon Ironhide, but it's an annoying piece of kibble that I wish they'd found a way to hide. He is quite well sculpted, with headlights, grille, (unpainted) taillights, door seams & handles, a winch at the front & even a rollcage on the side windows.

   There's essentially no play value here. Okay he rolls along on his tyres, and the guns are fixed weapons but that's all we get here.

   A flawed vehicle mode - mostly because of the radar array - with unpainted taillights (which works badly on a black toy where the sculpted detail doesn't stand out). Nonetheless this is a decent 4x4 mode which represents Trailbreaker well. It's below the usual standards of the Classicsverse, but better than the vehicle modes of many other recent lines.

TRANSFORMATION TO ROBOT MODE

   Detach and set aside the camper (with guns). Split the rear and pivot the halves out to the sides and back to form his legs. Fold down the doors, swing the arms out to the sides. Push in the Autobot logo on the hood, fold down the front to form his chest. Rotate the shoulders up & clip them onto his side mirrors. Rotate the forearms & fold out his fists. Flip out and rotate his head. fold down the feet & stand him up. Attach the camper as a gun or shield & you're done.

ROBOT MODE
Height: 14cm Width: 12cm

   A black robot with red knees and elbows, Trailbreaker has silver thighs & fists. The grille & headlights are on his chest while the silver radar array sits behind his head. His face is silver with colourless eyes - although there's no lightpipe so at a glance they just look black. Curiously the Autobot logo is now hidden within his chest. The colours and general layout make this robot mode distinctly Trailbreaker, although the arm colours differ quite a bit and the facial sculpt is more his cartoon face than the simple face of the G1 toy. The colours themselves work well; but then red & grey usually combine well and black works with everything.

   As mentioned, this robot is clearly Trailbreaker, although he no longer has the pot belly of the original toy. His torso is still quite beefy but the bulk is higher now. The bodyshape is quite buff actually. The radar array behind his head might have been a distraction in vehicle mode but here it does a perfect job of defining Trailbreaker and works quite well visually.

   There's quite a bit of poseability here. His head turns, although you need to lift the radar array up to get to it. The shoulders and hips are ball jointed while his elbows and knees are hinged with rotators. His waist turns while his ankles are essentially fixed. He has quite useful heelspurs and unlike many contemporary moulds Trailbreaker's feet aren't moulded for a "relaxed" stance with legs slightly apart (which is because the bottom of his feet are the back of the vehicle mode). The weapon provides some play value. It can plug into the outside of either forearm as a gun, or into either hand. It's also able to plug into the top of the radar array as an overhead weapon, although it looks somewhat silly here. There's also a black plate inside which folds out to reveal a red handle - turning it into a handheld shield. All these options feature the dual silver cannons.

   A solid robot mode with good colours & a distinct Trailbreaker feel. The poseability is pretty good and the weapon, while far from spectacular, provides us with a few options. As with the vehicle mode he's not all that massive, but at least there's that bulky torso feel.

VARIATIONS

   None that I'm aware of. Hoist is a retool with the camper replaced by a different weapon & a different head.

OVERALL

   A toy that has generated some controversy due to his small size for a deluxe, but this is a good Trailbreaker toy - and it's a vastly underused character down the years so he's been long overdue (even compared to Hoist). While there's no outstanding element here, the size is the main shortcoming of what is still essentially a very good toy (if a little smaller than many would like). The transformation is by the numbers and the weapon a little silly, but the only real design flaw is the radar array that's stuck on top of the 4x4 mode. Recommend if you like ClassicsVerse toys; especially if you've been waiting for a Trailbreaker update - 8.5/10

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