Cliffbee.com: BotCon 2008 Megatron Toy Review

Toy Reviews
Individual Review




Name: Megatron
Series: Convention Exclusives
Allegiance: Heroic Decepticon
Alternate Mode: Cybertronian Jet

Thanks to Tiby for lending me Megatron for this review.



JET MODE
Height: 27cm Length: 21cm Width: 21.5cm

   A light grey jet with overhanging wings at the back, Megatron has black highlights here and there, transparent dark blue wingtips and laser on the air intakes and a detachable black tank on top (that deliberately resembles Armada Megatron). The inner wings and tank mount is black and there is some silver paint on the wings and red paint here and there. The tank sports reds and silvers also. There are large moulded Heroic Autobot logos on his wings, painted red with light grey relief. To be honest, the colours don't do a great job of making this an especially heroic toy, which is partly because there's a lot of black and partly because the very busy vehicle it's applied to is typical of Takara-conceived Decepticon leaders. Still, it's a nice enough colour scheme which looks better than the Energon version with brighter colours.

   The engines sit underneath the wings and anchor better than those on the Energon toy. There's a transparent blue cockpit at the front of the plane itself, which is roughly wedge shaped, and taller at the back than front. The wings form an "M" shape with the inner wings sloping in and the outer wings sloping out. While it's far from being realistic, this jet works visually and works well for a Decepticon leader (there are shades of Thunderwing here). While this gets in the way of the Shattered Glass concept, it does make for a powerful looking jet.

   There's plenty of play value here, which you'd expect of a toy that's a fully functional scaling down of a larger toy. The tank not only detaches, but fires a red missile from its barrel. While the Energon toy had a sound gimmick in this tank, the battery compartment is sealed (and I would assume the electronics stripped), likely to keep production costs down.

   Megatron himself has a few tricks as well. If you lift up the grey wingtip panels the transparent blue cannons at the very tip extend (without lifting) and red cannons fold out at both the front and rear of the wing - the entire assembly is geared so you can easily fold it away with the one reverse motion. The transparent blue cannons on either side of the nose can move up and down, ratcheting to 45 either way. There are three rolling wheels, one under the nose and one underneath each engine, and all three fold up. Unlike the Energon toy, they all stay _out_ without any trouble.

   A nice repaint of a fairly good jet mode, but I don't think the colours really capture anything especially heroic. If anything, they represent G1 Megatron - not exactly heroic. The play value is fairly good despite the loss of electronics, and everything works. The wingtip assemblies are well done and are the most unusual aspect of this jet mode, and while it may not be too heroic, this is still a nice repaint.

TRANSFORMATION TO ROBOT MODE

   Remove the piggybacking tank and set aside (if it's not already). Fold away all three wheels, unclip the engines from underneath the wings, swing them back and slide the wheel struts towards the front of the engines. Doing this will flip up his kneecaps, push out the feet and heelspurs _and_ deploy the feet and heelspurs (the auto deploy also auto stows the other way). Swing the now transformed boots into position. Rotate the wing plate on his back, fold the nose onto his back and fold up the wings. Pull down his shoulders, which will bring the arms down and out to his sides. Fold down his head and the robot mode is done.

   You have the option of folding down the cannons on his shoulders so they point forward - they look good in both positions. Clip the back of the tank into the top of his backpack (the butt of the nose), press the red button on his back and pull the tank out - the tank will draw out with a 10cm transparent green blade attached! This blade can simply unclip and stow again for jet mode. Underneath the tank there are two clips which deploy and clip onto his forearm.

   While this is a pretty good ultra overall, the transformation is probably the most impressive aspect of Megatron. The way the blade is drawn and the auto transforming boots are terrific features in their own right, and make transforming this guy fun.

ROBOT MODE
Height: 20.5cm (25cm with shoulder cannons up) Width: 12.5cm (21cm for the wings on his back)

   Again mainly light grey, Megatron has less black present in robot mode. The feet, shoulders, fists, shinpads and thighs are black. He sports a tubular chest, clearly taken from Galvatron. The head has been rescuLpted into the familiar G1 "buckethead", instead of the Galvatron-esque head of Energon. The blade and shoulder cannons are about all we see in the way of transparent blue - the rest is on his back now. This colour scheme feels more heroic, mainly because of his silver face with _blue_ eyes. The Galvatron aspects on his chest don't quite look heroic, but the red Heroic Autobot logo sculpted (and painted) there helps offset this.

   With the still impressive wingspan on his back, tank-sword on one arm and those giant shoulder cannons, Megatron looks quite imposing and well armed. The holes in his fists are standard sized, and while he doesn't have his own handheld gun he doesn't need one - so the option of giving him an Energon weapon is sufficient. You can attach the tank-sword to either arm - I like that have the option of both the missile launcher and sword here.

   The poseability is pretty good for a blocky toy with numerous gimmicks and autotransform elements. The head turns, the shoulders rotate and the elbows bend. His hips rotate and his legs can lift out the sides while his knees bend. The feet and heelspurs can fold down (although they're springloaded and flip back). Megatron is far from the most poseable ultra out there, but for a vehicular toy with so many features, he's managed fairly well. The wings on his back can get heavy, but if he tips back you can easily fold them out to the sides - and they look good out there. The missile launcher is his main gimmick here, since the sword clanging feature is gone with the rest of the electronics. This was a really nice feature of Energon Megatron and is a loss here - while I can understand wanting to keep the cost down on a small production run, I do miss this feature.

   There are actually four Decepticon logos in this mode, by the way, but only one is immediately obvious. Megatron's Spark crystal is embedded on his left shoulder and is hard to see from the front (but obvious from the left) while the base of the blade has a moulded logo. The last one is on a transparent blue panel on the front of the tank turret - it's also visible on the jet mode.

   The tank can of course be left to one side, either set aside or as a drone - you don't have to draw the blade if you don't want to. It can also be attached to his arm on its own as a missile launcher. I like the versatility here, and you even get a hardpoint on top of the turret to attach a Minicon (there's also a pair on each wingtip, actually).

   The buckethead is a great addition to this mould, even if it dilutes the Galvatron homage. The colour scheme is good and _does_ give us a sense of heroism. The poseability is good even if the play value isn't as good as last time around. As a display piece, this robot mode is very satisfying, and he still plays fairly well despite losing the sword sound.

VARIATIONS

   None that I'm aware of. Since Megatron was available exclusively at BotCon 2008, he is likely limited to a single production run. He was sold in a souvenir pack with Rodimus and Divebomb.

OVERALL

   A fairly good repaint of an interesting toy, and while the original toy had some great play value, we do lose some of that here. Still, the repaint looks good and the retooled head is well done. The jet mode doesn't heroic but the robot mode does to an extent. Probably the most impressive aspect of the mould is how well he's been engineered, so even without electronics there's still play value here. While I prefer the Energon toy with the electronics, the colour scheme and resculpted head make this a nice exclusive repaint. I'm not sure that he's worth the secondary market prices, but is satisfying nonetheless - 7/10

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