Cliffbee.com: RiD Bruticus Toy Review

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Individual Review




Name: Bruticus
Series: Robots in Disguise
Allegiance: Predacon
Function: Predacon Dog (shame this guy isn't a dog...)
Alternate Mode: Cerberus



CERBERUS MODE
Height: 11cm Length: 16cm Width: 7cm

   A deep red cerberus with black, yellow and midnight blue elements here are there. The three tips of his tail are painted silver along with a spine on the right head. The middle and right heads have red eyes while the left head has green eyes. Before I go on I should qualify the whole cerberus thing. The concept started in Ancient Greek mythology - Cerberus was a three headed wolf who guarded the entrance of the underworld (a kingdom called Hades, not dissimilar to the Christian concept of hell). So Bruticus is one of those, which I guess explains the red. There's a pretty good level of detail here, although Bruticus relatively sparse paint mask doesn't always do it justice. The colours are okay, but he could have looked a whole lot cooler (well, demonic) with a decent paint mask.

   The word on this guy is that he was an unused Beast Machines mould that Hasbro decided to use in RiD, and he came out towards the tail end of RiD when the repaints started to come out in numbers. The level of detail and mixture of organic and technological aspects would back this up, and the number of quasi-gimmicks also supports this idea. There are quite a few abandoned gimmicks or simple play value details, which make Bruticus a nice toy despite the cutting of corners. There are some really nice aspects to the mould which _do_ come through, such as two different "secondary" side heads, a sawblade enbedded in the right head with a silver paint wash, three different tail tips (sabre, knife, drill), silver wash on the front claws to name a few.

   There aren't any dominant gimmicks to Bruticus. Instead there's subtle poseability - two of the three lower jaws move, the legs are poseable, the side heads are movable and there's a "broken chain" on the front left leg which can fold down, becoming prominent. The hindlegs could move side to side a little more, but I don't mind this limitations since they default to a ready-to-pounce pose.

   Considering that Bruticus is almost an afterthought, this cerberus mode comes off quite well. The sculpt and general attention to detail in the mould are great, and while you can't help but wonder how much better it would have been with a decent paint job and fleshed out gimmicks rather than just hints, this beast mode is quite satisfying.

TRANSFORMATION TO ROBOT MODE

   There's a lot of limb movement and asymmetry, so I'll sum up what goes where. The main head becomes the robot head, the right head becomes the right hand and the left head flips around to become the left elbow. The hindlegs end up on his back, but open out to become a second set of arms. The forelegs become the robot legs. The tail becomes a handheld tripartite weapon, which can only be held in his right hand. During the transformation his magenta Predacon symbol (nestled within the head) becomes visible.

ROBOT MODE
Height: 15cm Width: 15cm

   Again a mix of deep red, black, midnight blue and yellow, with a little more yellow now. The colours work a little better now, since there's slightly less focus on red - the mix is a little more balanced. The eyes are red and there are some silver weapons here and there. The colour mix is so complex that I'm not going to go through it - the colours mix all over, and do do fairly well.

   There's so much happening here - Bruticus is a walking armoury with three faces, four arms, four handheld weapons and probably floorseats for the apocalypse. There's a red face on the right side of his head, black one on the left and the main one is largely midnight blue. There are bat-like wings hanging off his head while that broken chain is now clearly visible on the left ankle. The left hand has a built in sickle, the right hand is a wolf's head that can hold the tripartite tail. The second set of arms are yellow with midnight blue hands, both of which have moulded weapons - an icepick on the left and club on the right. The spare arms sit out to the sides and look pretty good there.

   While he lacks any ranged weaponry, Bruticus doesn't really need much more - he's clearly built to raise hell, and has a demonic face to boot. Not the sort of guy you want to meet - ever. My only real complaint about this mode is a badly formed pelvis - there's a gap just above it and the thighs sit awkwardly on either side. Of course, he's not really humanoid, rather a technorganic demon, so this isn't a major criticism.

   Straight out of Hades, Bruticus is thematically brilliant - and that's accounting for the lazy paint job. There's an awful lot going on here - more than on most ultras, and the play value is very impressive. The four arms work surprisingly well, which is testament to how well the theme works here. The robot mode is easily his best mode and is a great continuation of the mythical beast concept. He's not terribly robotic, but this works for Bruticus.

VARIATIONS

   None that I'm aware of. Bruticus is one of few moulds news for RiD - most toys were Car Robots adaptations or repaints.

OVERALL

   An unusual combination - Bruticus's execution is quite obviously lazy, yet he still manages to be a very good toy. The cerberus is in itself an interesting choice of alt mode, while the robot mode is downright demonic. There's a bagful of play value and weaponry in robot mode, and enough to keep you interested in beast mode. If you liked the detail of Beast Machines, you'll like Bruticus. I have to admit I wasn't a fan of the BM beasts on the whole, but this toy simply has so much to offer it's difficult to not appreciate it - 8/10

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