Cliffbee.com: 6" Titanium Starscream Toy Review

Toy Reviews
Individual Review




Name: Starscream
Series: 6" Titaniums
Allegiance: Decepticon
Function: Air Commander
Alternate Mode: Cybertronian Jet

Thanks to kup for loaning me Starscream for this review (I have since acquired Starscream).



JET MODE
Height: 6.5cm Length: 15.5cm Width: 14cm

   A light grey Cybertronian jet with a blue nose and red on the edges of his wings and tailfin. Starscream's canopy is painted amber with a stamped Decepticon logo behind it. In a reversal of the usual pattern, Starscream is a repaint of Thundercracker. This jet is taken from the War Within comics, which in turn were inspired by the pyramid-shaped seekers seen in the G1 Cartoon episode More Than Meets The Eye, and the colours very clearly represent G1 Starscream rather than any modern Starscream interpretation, despite the fact the grey is lighter than usual. Starscream is more of flying arrowhead shape than a pyramid, with a raised area around the base of his single tailfin. Much of the fuselage is made of die-cast metal, with the small wings, tail, raised tail base and nose being composed of plastic. The nose is actually composed of soft plastic. Overall it's a good colour scheme which captures the character well. I've never found Starscream's colours to be _that_ interesting, but I'm not going to hold that against this tribute figure.

   Since Starscream is composed primarily (maybe 65%) of die-cast metal, this jet mode is quite heavy for its size. The rear is hollow - so don't look at him from behind or you'll see his hands and head. Thankfully the weight distribution still works - and this isn't really an angle you'd typically look at. Also on his underside are three black plastic wheels - the front one actually folds out on a metal leg. The wheels and retractable leg actually represent all of Starscream's play value here.

   The paint job here is well thought out, with the colours roughly corresponding to the colour map on the original. There are some silver paint applications which form missiletips and guns on the sides of his nose, which work well. The colour map is quite different from Thundercracker's, which I appreciate. The sculpt is also well done, with the missileheads on his wingtips, various vents on the fuselage and a complex rib pattern on the rounded canopy. There are quite a lot of sculpted seams, none of which are what I'd call typical of planes - but then this isn't an Earthen jet anyway.

   There's not much play value here - I've already covered what little movement he does have here. The 6" Titanium line is aimed at collectors as display pieces anyway, so I'm not so worried about play value. kup's Starscream doesn't hold together well, which surprises me since both my Thundercracker and my Sunstorm hold together fine.

   A good jet mode with great colours, a well thought out paint mask, a good sculpt and a colour scheme which captures the character well. I do prefer Thundercracker's colours but I can't really fault this colour scheme either. I can't say whether or not the stability issues on kup's toy are constant across this figure, but I am disappointed since the two versions of this mould I own myself are unaffected. While it's not quite the flying pyramid seen in the G1 cartoon, it's close enough, and represents a more realistic airframe.

TRANSFORMATION TO ROBOT MODE

   Fold up the nosewheel if you haven't already. Split the tailfin and fold the tail and its base out to the sides, revealing his head. Unclip the sides, releasing the nose, which folds underneath and reveals his groin. Clip the nose onto his back, pull the sides forward to form his legs, rotate the boots forward and flip up his feet. Swing down his shoulders, swing down the forearms from the back of his upper arms and you're done.

ROBOT MODE
Height: 16cm Width: 14.5cm

   A grey robot with blue forearms and feet, Starscream has red around his torso - including the shortish shoulder pylons, and a grey head with silver face and red eyes. The canopy is on his chest, matching the original (along with the red on either side, and the shoulder pylons). The Decepticon logo is now well placed in the middle of his chest. The layout of colours on his torso are an improvement over both Thundercracker and Sunstorm - although to be fair Thundercracker's is also a decent match for the original Seeker styling (Sunstorm is as unfocused as Hasbro toys of that name). The colour scheme here is well thought out and while I might not be a big fan of Starscream's colour set, I really do like what the designer has done here.

   The wings sit on the outside of his upper arms, behind the now opened tailfin (on either side). These compound wings resemble the traditional seeker wings, although the attachment point is quite different. The panels which were the base of the tail - which form the front of his upper arms - don't actually attach to anything, although the transformation hinges are quite tight so they'll stay in place without any trouble.

   Again there's quite a bit of die-cast metal - the front of his torso, backpack, back of his upper arms, boots and feet are all die-cast. Most of the robot mode aspects (thighs, lower arms, head) are plastic, along with the joints. His centre of gravity isn't affected by the die-cast metal, since his boots are metal, ensuring that the metal isn't a liability.

   The poseability is quite good here. His head turns while the shoulders swing, and lift maybe 10 out to the sides. There are two hinges per elbow and his wrists rotate. His hips swing and lift out to the sides, the knees are hinged with rotators just above these hinges. It's worth noting that all four of these leg joints are ratcheting and are quite tight - which is a good thing considering how heavy the upper body is - Starscream won't collapse in a heap, doing the splits spontaneously. The feet can swing down, which is really for the transformation rather than robot mode, but it does help in posing. The heelspurs are short but effective. As with all of the 6" Titaniums, Starscream comes with a grey plastic stand, featuring his name and faction symbol on the front. He doesn't need this to form stable poses, thankfully. His joints are all quite useful. Starscream lacks a weapon, and his hands lack holes anyway.

   The most G1-faithful version of this mould, and the most iconic character of the trio. The mould itself is pretty good as Titaniums go - everything holds together well and the articulation useful. He's stable and visually appealing. The colours and paint map really anchor this as G1 Starscream, and while Thundercracker is recognisable, Starscream is even more so, meaning that this robot mode has something to offer as a repaint.

VARIATIONS

   None that I'm aware of. As mentioned, Starscream is a repaint of Thundercracker, Sunstorm and Skywarp. Thrust is a later repaint of the same mould.

OVERALL

   One of the best revisitings of G1 Starscream we've seen. While the Titaniums don't offer the play value of most modern toys, older fans will find this figure far more rewarding than some of the modern "G1" themed Starscream repaints (such as the repaint of the disappointing Energon Starscream). This is one of the strongest Titanium moulds and the repaint is very focussed. A good display piece, I'd recommend this figure to fans of the character since he makes a wonderful display piece. The War Within jet mode is really geared towards fans of that comic, but you don't need to be a fan of the comics to discern the tribute here - 8.5/10

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