Cliffbee.com: Universe Special Edition Megatron Toy Review

Toy Reviews
Individual Review




Name: Megatron
Series: Universe
Allegiance: Decepticon
Alternate Mode: Tank



TANK MODE
Height: 6cm Length: 15cm Width: 5.5cm

   A grey green tank with black treads and a single black cannon on the front of his turret, this is a repaint of the Classics 2 Pack Megatron, albeit in colours that are based on G1 Megatron's. There are red highlights here and there, including the top of the cannon, while there are gunmetal and silver painted details including gunmetal on the sculpted wheels inside the treads. This is an attractive colour scheme which marries the tank mode often used as Megatron with the traditional Megatron colours - which is a surprisingly uncommon combination. There's a single Decepticon logo stamped right at the front of the tank.

   While it's not really a feature of the Classics line in which this mould originated, this toy has quite a detailed sculpt. The moulded treads are no surprise but there's a lot of detail on the topside, the cannon is very detailed. and the treads are very well sculpted.

   The play value here is fairly good, although I'm slightly surprised we don't have a projectile weapon. There are four black wheels underneath which roll well, and are ridged for that noisy "heavy machinery" feel. The turret rotates through 360 - something neither G2 Megatron or Combat Hero Megatron featured. The cannon can lift up to about 40, any higher you'll start to pull the turret apart. There's a transparent red button on the top left of the turret which is non-functional in tank mode and on the right side, just opposite, Megatron has a spot for his robot mode handgun to sit. Okay, so the play value is nothing on the G2 Megatron - but this is a much smaller tank and the colours are far better.

   It takes a little bit of practice to get the turret to lock together properly - it took me a minute or so to get it all assembled properly, but once I'd worked that out it all fits together solidly. My only real criticisms of this tank relate to the turret, however. The red button is quite prominent, and does detract somewhat. The turret does stay together well but there are some fairly obvious seams on top, you can pick fairly easily that it forms from the robot arms. The red tip of the cannon falls off far too easily (it's a lot worse than on the classics version). I'm thinking I might glue this one on.

   For me the flaws here are fairly minor - and this is the most realistic tank mode Megatron has had. The colours and detailing are good, the play value is good if not spectacular and it's a Megatron tank with movable turret. The colours aren't quite realistic but they're way ahead of the colours seen on the G2 versions of this concept, and they tie into the G1 colours very well anyway. I wouldn't say they're any better or worse than the green scheme of the Classics version - rather they're going for a different take on the character - but the paint job here is more detailed, which fits in with the Special Edition moniker.

TRANSFORMATION TO ROBOT MODE

   Fold the rear and underside down to form his groin and legs. Separate the boots and flip out his feet. Turn the turret backwards, spilt and fold down to the sides to form arms, lock the shoulders into place. The head, which was hidden inside the turret, is now visible. Rotate the arms into position. Detach the handgun from behind his left forearm, fold out and place in his left hand.

   On the classics version of this mould, the feet were misassembled (on the wrong legs). The feet are assembled correctly this time.

ROBOT MODE
Height: 13.5cm Width: 11cm

   The grey is again the main colour here, although there's a fair bit of a darker grey on his chest and boots while the treads on the outsides of his boots are black, along with his groin. Megatron has a red waist while his head is a classic "buckethead" with silver face and red eyes. The Decepticon logo is central on his chest and there's a weak lightpipe in his eyes. Again the paint job is detailed, and there's plenty of attention to detail here. The layout of colours here maps _very_ closely to those on G1 Megatron - down to red elbows and black fist(s). The lighter grey lines up to the silver of the G1 gun while the darker grey on his boots equates to the non-chromed grey of the boots of that toy. Again it's an attractive colour scheme, and one that should please these who appreciate G1 homages. While the debate will rage on about whether Megatron should be a gun or a tank, this robot mode straddles that divide quite cleverly.

   Megatron has no right hand, instead he has a compound weapon (which I'll come back to) - while this isn't quite a feature we expect of Megatron, it does allude to the fusion cannon. The buckethead matches the head seen in the media rather than the G1 toy, however this helps make this robot unmistakably Megatron.

   Megatron's poseability is pretty good. His head and waist both turn, the shoulders swing and lift outwards. Both elbows rotate although only the left elbows bends since the gimmick attached to that red button is in the way. The hips are ball jointed with rotators just below, the knees bend while the feet and heelspurs are hinged. While the left arm's poseability isn't so good, the leg poseability is great, and Megatron is easy to stand in action poses.

   The compound weapon is a combination of a grey shield formed from the central strip of the turret and the turret's cannon. The whole assembly can actually detach from the forearm (probably to prevent it breaking), but there's no real hand on the stump. The shield has a claw-like end, and you can pose it as a slashing weapon or a hand-cannon. When you press the red button, the entire assembly spins, and since it sits on a hinge, it can spin with his arm out in front (like a chopper rotor) or out to the side allowing the claw to form a slashing weapon. While static both configurations look odd, but in motion they work quite well. It'll keep spinning as you keep depressing the button, making a fun gimmick. It's by no means the best gimmick we've seen, but at least it works. To be honest I would have preferred an actual hand, but this gimmick is still interesting. The grey shield falls off very easily on this toy - as with the red tip, the same piece was more stable on the Classics version.

   A good robot mode despite the odd gimmick and a poor lightpipe. The colours work well and the tribute is tremendously well executed. This robot mode is quite playable and poseable, although the loose pieces are annoying. On the strength of the attention to detail in this repaint, I'd say this mode just shades the tank mode here.

VARIATIONS

   None that I'm aware of. As mentioned, this is a repaint of the Classics 2 Pack Megatron.

OVERALL

   Megatron improves on the tank concept he first tried in G2, using the colours of Megatron in G1. The colours and paint job make this a wonderful tribute toy, and a good repaint of the Classics toy which offers something different. Both modes are detailed, the play value is pretty good overall, even the unusual gimmick works, and I'm happy it doesn't get in the way of turret movement. I'm annoyed by the loose pieces, but the tribute is so well done that I can live with these shortcomings - to the point that I prefer this toy to the more solid Classics toy - 8.5/10

"Transformers" and other indica trademarks of Hasbro and/or Takara.