Cliffbee.com: Rapticon Toy Review

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Individual Review




Name: Rapticon
Series: Beast Machines
Allegiance: Maximal
Function: Guerrilla Combat Specialist
Alternate Mode: Robotic Velociraptor



RAPTOR MODE
Height: 12cm Length: 30cm (snout to tail) Width: 7cm

   A cobalt blue mechano-velociraptor with some metallic green highlights, splashes of silver paint, and a dark grey chrome on his hips, back and the crown of his head. Rapticon's got green eyes and a green lower jaw on a predominantly blue head, although the top jaw is painted silver. About 80% of this mode is cobalt blue. There's a slight metallic feel to this blue and it looks like a skeleton as a result. The chrome sections have green highlights, which match the eyes.

   Essentially, this is a Transmetal 2, although he was released under the Beast Machines moniker, he's a repaint of Transmetal 2 Dinobot, so I'm going to talk about this mould as a TMII. Being of that era, this is a mould with an exceptional amount of detail, including skin textures on the few smooth surfaces, as well as lots of mechanical textures, the latter tend to be more obvious. The combination of metallic cobalt blue and intricate mechanical details remind me of the endoskeleton of the Terminator robots. I really like this aesthetic, the Terminator look works really well, in fact I think it suits better than the skeletal look Dinobot had. Maybe one day he'll be Governor of California....

   The claws looks more mechanical than organic, and all four limbs have hoses running between the feet and the limbs themselves. The tail is segmented and he has huge fangs on both the upper and lower jaws, with a gap between them. The gaps in the tail and jaws gave Dinobot his skeletal look, but with the darker metallic colours they make Rapticon look robotic.

   Despite the intricate details, a lot of Transmetal 2s suffer from poor proportions or limbs that don't quite sit right. In this case Rapticon's forelimbs are too big and curve downwards. I mention it since it's quite obvious, but it's nowhere near as bad as some of the flaws on other Transmetal 2s. It's really the only major flaw of the raptor mode, actually.

   Rapticon's poseability is reasonable, although nothing fantastic. His head is on a somewhat limited ball joint, and his mouth can open quite wide. Opening his mouth reveals a small cobalt blue tongue which has two forks, one on top of each other - it looks like a little claw, actually. He's got ball joints at the base of the forelimbs and hinges at the wrists, and two hinges along the length of these limbs, but only the wrists move naturally - the rest aren't intended for beast mode. He has ball jointed knees, hinged ankles and hinges on his false ankle (halfway along his foot, like a cat or dog has), but his leg poseability is quite limited by the fact his hips only wiggle a little.

   Adding to the play value is the tail, made of soft plastic. At the base is a green section, which rotates, and when you do so, the tail moves from right to left, thanks to a plastic cord running through the centre of the tail (you can see it, it looks like a spinal cord). The chrome panel on his head lifts up to reveal his spark crystal, which is pink. This spark crystal is the only retooling on Rapticon - from a Predacon to a Dinobot crystal. The hook-claws on his feet hinge separate to the rest of his foot, allowing him to slice his enemies, although it doesn't work as well as was intended, since his legs get in the way of the claw lifting up.

   Overall, Rapticon has a good beast mode. The detailing is good, he has good play value and some really cool aspects, like the spinal cord and tongue. The colours work better than those on Dinobot, in my opinion. These are great colours, and the Terminator feel makes them even better. The oversized forelimbs are really the major feature holding this raptor back.

TRANSFORMATION TO ROBOT MODE

   A lot of panel folding in the chest, so I'm not going to describe it as such. The legs become his robot arms, the forelimbs the robot legs. His velociraptor head forms the bulk of his chest, and the beast mode hips become large shoulderpads. His tail can stay on his back, or you can remove it and place it in his left hand as a whip.

ROBOT MODE
Height: 13.5cm Width: 11cm

   The cobalt blue of the beast mode really dominates Rapticon's robot mode. The green is still around, on his groin and upper arms, but you barely notice it. the silver paint is more noticeable, since it covers a lot of the face. The head's base colour is blue, and the eyes are the same bright green as those on the beast mode, but there's heavy use of silver on the facial paint mask. The silver face works well, actually, his head looks a lot better than Dinobot's did. It's still asymmetrical like Dinobot's was, but the colours are more balanced. The mouth is painted to look like a mouth with teeth, whereas on Dinobot, it's painted in such a way that all you see is a block of silver paint.

   As with all Transmetal 2 toys, Rapticons's mould has great detail, and this detail is asymmetrical. This is a spindly robot mode, and the beast mode claws sit on the end of the forearms, lengthening the arm length - when you straighten the arms out the hands reach down to his ankles. The claws certainly give him a great advantage in close quarter combat, since he's got long arms with giant blades at the end. Add to this the tail-whip, he'd be a difficult foe to approach, and he holds onto his whip a lot better than Dinobot does.

   Like his beast mode, Rapticons's robot mode's detail is a strong point. The mechanical left eye really looks like it houses a laser, giving him a ranged weapon. The dark grey panel on his chest lifts up to reveal his spark crystal - I really like how they positioned this. The shoulderpads are huge, and while they don't really get in the way of poseability, they overwhelm his head and shoulders. I should mention that the shoulderpads being dark like the rest of the toy means they stand out less than the dark shoulderpads on the lighter Dinobot, even though the mould is the same.

   Rapticon's poseability is pretty good, although you might want to simply leave the tail weapon out, since it's pretty heavy and makes it tricky to stand him up. He's got ball joints at the shoulders, elbows and hips, and hinges at the elbows, wrists, knees, ankles and bridge of the foot. He has small heelspurs, which are enough to keep him standing in a variety of poses, provided you've removed the tail, or have it placed so it's tip is on the ground. The hoses that now sit on the back of his feet, like achilles tendons, limit the positioning of the feet somewhat, meaning you'll rely more on his ankles and knees for positioning his legs.

   The Terminator look isn't as prevalent in robot mode, but the colour scheme still looks great. The only real flaw with the mould in robot mode is the shoulderpads, but the colour scheme actually helps alleviate the problem it causes. His arms are still longer than they should be, but that's really the only flaw Rapticon has in robot mode.

VARIATIONS

   None as far as I know.

OVERALL

   There's some great detailing on this toy, and the colours are fantastic. This was already a good mould, the colours used solve most of the shortcomings Dinobot exhibited. The Terminator look has a coolness in itself, too. The bad proportions are still there, but don't drag him down much. I'd actually recommend him even if you have TMII Dinobot - sure, Dinobot's in the Beast Wars show and Rapticon is a repaint that didn't appear in the cartoons, but his colour scheme adds a lot to the mould, which is in itself a good one - 7/10

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