Cliffbee.com: Hoist Toy Review

Toy Reviews
Individual Review




Name: Hoist
Series: Generation 1
Allegiance: Autobot
Function: Maintenance
Alternate Mode: Tow Truck



TOW TRUCK MODE
Height: 6cm Length: 16cm Width: 6cm

   A green tow truck with an orange towing assembly on the back, Hoist is essentially a pick up truck style vehicle with a towing assembly in his tray. He's the trailing platform style of tow truck, rather than the hook style. He's got yellow and black diagonal "warning" stripes down the sides, chrome silver front headlights and hubcaps. As horrible as green & orange can be, this green is a nice, muted, pine green, and the orange is sparing enough that this scheme _works_.

   Aside from the extensive chrome, he's also got rubber tyres and transparent blue windows. His engine block (ie the front section of the truck) is die cast metal. He's got the obligatory Diaclone cockpit - lift up a panel on top of his roof and you'll find a little seat inside for a pilot.

   There's a lot of good details in this mould. There's a number plate indent in the front bumper, rear taillights (which are orange plastic), door handles and even a metallic lattice grip on his platform.

   Play value's about as good as you could hope, although the platform doesn't have wheels, it slides along fine though. It's jointed, and is able to fold up and side on top of the tray, or swing from side to side for cornering when down. There's small notches on the back of the platform, too, meaning Hoist can actually tow a similar size Autobot, although he has to accelerate slowly (mind you, that's the same for a real tow truck).

   The only real downside to this mode is the fact that the rear section isn't actually solid - there's green bits visible. Included in this is the robot head, although it's just a green blob - no face or anything, luckily. Still, with all the detail and the fact he can actually tow, Hoist's truck mode is pretty good.

TRANSFORMATION TO ROBOT MODE

   Open the wings out, fold up the platform. Swing up the sides of the truck. Swing the legs out and fold up the feet. Fold the rear two thirds of the truck down, the rear section should pretty much flop down anyway. Lift out the head, sit it on top of his shoulders and swing up the wings. Fold the arms down to the sides, lift out the forearms and attach the fists (or missiles if you prefer). Attach the radar scanner to the hole on the back of his head. Done.

ROBOT MODE
Height: 13.5cm Width: 9cm

   Still largely green, with more orange and still a fair bit of chrome. Hoist's torso, head, feet, upper arms and hands are all green. His wings (and backpack) are orange, his legs a combination of orange and chrome silver. His forearms are silver, as are his weapons - including the missiles if you've swapped out the hands. Again the colour scheme works here, the orange is still used sparingly, and the chrome isn't overwhelming. Oh yes, he's got yellow eyes and a grey mouthplate.

   It's worth noting that Hoist's dimensions here are very show accurate - more so than Trailbreaker, who is of a similar moulding. His colours are also very close to the show version, actually. The show Hoist has a nozzle (missile) in place of one hand, so many fans will prefer to put him together with a nozzle-hand.

   There's a few stickers here and there, nearly all just minor details. The only one really worth it's own mention is the Autobot symbol on his torso - about where his waist would be if he had one. His chest is that transparent blue plastic mentioned earlier - it's the front windscreen. The lack of any real waist or groin may sound strange, but the show Hoist has a solid block of a torso, so it actually looks fine on Hoist.

   The play value here is reasonably good for the era, His shoulders and elbows bend, and he can shoot his missiles from his fists. Also, since his fists fit into missile launchers, he's effectively got wrists that rotate.

   The only real downside here is the block-torso, but as I said, it's not really an issue for cartoon fans, since this looks just like cartoon Hoist. The other potential annoyance is the parts that can be lost - the wings detach, and the missiles and fists, which can't be stowed in vehicle mode, can easily be lost. Still, he's got good colours, he's show accurate, and the overall look is cool anyway.

VARIATIONS

   There's been three releases: the original in 1985, a limited reissue in Japan in 2000 and a Hasbro reissue in 2003. All are pretty close to each other. The 2003's differences are: the wings have obviously have to have their mould recast - they now attach "upside-down" - not that it really affects the look; there's red rectangles stickers on his shoulders that are now picture frame shaped, not solid rectangles; there's no rubsign; the orange plastic is a lighter shade, although only really noticeable on the backpack; the missile launchers have their spring removed. I know some of the Hasbro reissues were rather disappointing, but I'd easily recommend the Hoist reissue - it's very true to the original.

OVERALL

   A good toy, Hoist hasn't really got any flaws worth worrying about, with the exception of losable parts. The colours are well blended, he's got chrome, rubber tyres and a good level of detail in vehicle mode. Plus he has tow truck play value! If you only get one toy of this transformation scheme, make it Hoist (although Trailbreaker's still good), since the tow truck thing is just nifty - 8/10

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