Cliffbee.com: Guildeart Toy Review

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Individual Review




Name: Guildeart
Series: Beast Wars Neo
Allegiance: Cybertron
Function: Frontline Combat
Alternate Mode: Triceratops



TRICERATOPS MODE
Height: 10cm Length: 19cm Width: 6cm

   A mustard yellow Triceratops with brown horns, spines and claws and a green spray of paint down his spine, Guildeart is about 98% organic in this mode. Aside from some robot mode stuff on the back of his hind legs and a shoulder underneath his neck, he's covered in leathery sculpt. There is a small gap on his underside between the hind legs, but I can easily overlook this. Of course, whether or not this colour scheme is accurate is unknown, but it works aesthetically, which is all I can ask of it. The mustard yellow and green both seem likely enough, and while I'd expect the horns to be lighter, there's no reason why he couldn't be brown. His beak is painted amber, which I'm not so keen on - I would have preferred something that contrasts better with the mustard, like brown. The green stripe down his back suddenly ends on the tail, but this is about the only flaw a well executed paint job. He even has painted eyeballs.

   The moulding in this mode is excellent. Scales, wrinkles, nostrils as well as hair-strands on his horns and beak. His front legs are moulded into slightly different positions, with the left slightly forward to give him a walking pose. All four legs are on ball joints at their hips, which allows for some posing. Probably about as much as a plant eating quadrupedal dinosaur would have had, anyway.

   There's an interesting addition to this mode. He has the ability to play dead. The legs can splay out to the sides. Pushing the central horn back makes his eyes roll back in his head and his tongue hang out. Finally you can open panels on this side to reveal ribs and flesh. It's macabre, certainly, but it's an interesting addition to what's already a pretty good mode.

   To be honest, his colour scheme feels quite similar to the later, more accessible repaint, Triceradon, of Beast Machines. If anything, the repainted version is probably slightly nicer. The playing dead feature, whilst unusual, adds some nice play value to compliment the leg posing. Overall it's a solid beast mode, if not spectacular.

TRANSFORMATION TO ROBOT MODE

   I'm not going to go through this in too much detail. It's fiddly, almost to the point of being annoying. There's asymmetry, the head becomes one forearm, the tail becomes the gun, which he holds in the other hand. Lots of panel manipulation and the hind legs become the robot legs. Transforming him back to dinosaur mode is tricky, since everything has to fit in exactly the right spot. I suppose it's a typical BWNeo transform in that it's complex and exact.

ROBOT MODE
Height: 12cm (top of head) Width: ~15cm (depending on pose)

   The mustard is still a major colour here, prominent on his legs, head and arms. Guildeart's torso, ankles, right shoulder and left forearm are a metallic graphite colour, with a metallic terracotta plastic on his left shoulder and some weaponry His face is painted terracotta (not metallic) with yellow eyes and a white mouth. The facial sculpt is quite organic, and there are horns on the top of his head, in keeping with the beast-styled robot heads of BW Neo. There are terracotta, yellow, silver and brown elements painted on his torso, which is quite detailed. The colour scheme here looks really good, and suits the huge bulk of the figure. Whilst I think the beast mode is slightly inferior that of Triceradon, I think the robot mode colours are better than on the BM repaint.

   Guildeart's robot mode is very stocky, with a small torso, big legs and lots of kibble on his arms. The right hand is the beast head, the beast's back is his left shoulderpad. Attached to this shoulderpad are the forelegs, from which terracotta spines protrude to make them look like attack spikes or something (as opposed to just pure kibble). He has an armour skirt, which sort of just sits there attached to his waist. It's small, but does get in the way to some extent. With the lighter mustard colour on the periphery, Guildeart really looks like an enforcer, it actually highlights the bulk of the toy, and while this effectively means it draws attention to the kibble, it means he looks less jumbled than Triceradon.

   The gun, which sports a purple Destron spark crystal, is also a missile launcher. There are two terracotta missiles which live in the shoulderpad that you can load into this launcher. Adding to this play value is the fact he's quite poseable. He has poseable ankles, heelspurs, knees and ball joints on his hips. The knee joints are a little high, but don't look that bad. The head can turn, although due to the shape of his chest can't turn all the way to the right. The shoulders and left elbow are ball joints and there are two joints in the right elbow. It's worth nothing that poseability is hampered by kibble - some poses of the legs are limited by the skirt, and the left arm's posing is quite limited by it's huge shoulderpad. The upside is that the heelspurs make him quite stable, so he'll stand in a lot of poses.

   It's not often that you come across a toy which is better because of highlighted kibble, but Guildeart manages just that. Effectively the kibble becomes deliberate features, and Guildeart plays to his bulk well. There's a clear, intentional theme here, a brutish war machine. Having said that, the right hand being a beak is a drawback. The proportions are a little off, but unlike on the BM repaint, Guildeart uses this as part of the theme. The head is well sculpted and looks brutish, and the colours work well together.

VARIATIONS

   As mentioned, this mould was recoloured in Beast Machines as Triceradon, who was later recoloured in the Transformers: Universe line. Twice. Killerpunch is a retooling and repaint of Guildeart.

OVERALL

   The most focused version of this mould - Guildeart's colours work well in both modes, the sculpt is good and the transformation is involved, if a tad too tricky. The robot mode theme works well, and he really revels in his bulkiness, looking like someone not be messed with. I'm not sold on the amber beak and the panelling hanging off the robot mode does restrict poseability a little, but these aren't dealbreakers. He's slightly better than the Beast Machines repaint, but they're fairly similar, so I'm not sure that you'd want to pick up both. Having said that, since the mould has been released twice by Hasbro, this version isn't that expensive eight years after it was released, so if you're interested I'd recommend him - 7.5/10

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