Cliffbee.com: Sixshot Toy Review

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Individual Review




Name: Sixshot
Series: Generation 1
Allegiance: Decepticon
Function: Solo Transformer Assault Group
Alternate Mode: Tank, Puma, Pistol, Space Cruiser, Tank

   Note: I'm going to depart from my usual format here, covering the robot mode first and then summarise each of the alt modes. While each mode is distinct and deliberate, I want to keep this review concise. The whole point of Sixshot is a variety of modes, rather than realistic alt modes (as with the Triple Changers), so I'm focusing on the broad picture.



ROBOT MODE
Height: 32cm Width: 14cm

   A very tall Transformer to allow the complexity of six modes, Sixshot has an aqua torso with off white arms, thighs and head. His boots are purple with black feet. There are black winglets sticking out from either side of the chest (covering the upper arms), lilac wings sticking up behind the head, black hands and aqua shoulderpads. The colours come together fairly well, since there's enough white for the aqua and purple to mesh. Despite his proportions, Sixshot has a simple face with a mouthplate and red eyes. The nose and mouthplate are well formed, at least.

   As one might expect, there are elements of several alt modes here. The boots have the silver windshield of the armoured truck on them, there are tank treads on his forearms with puma claws on his wrists. The four wheels of the armoured truck are all visible on his arms, while the winglets and two wings on his back provide a sample of the space cruiser mode, as does the bridge on his groin. The pistol mode is the only one that doesn't jump out here anywhere - and it's the one that relies on the fewest dedicated pieces.

   While there are a _lot_ of moving parts on this toy, Sixshot isn't very poseable. The shoulders rotate and that's it. All that engineering goes towards the transformation - which is understandable. Sixshot is no worse than many other G1 toys when it comes to poseability anyway - and has stacks of play value in his many modes. He's just as poseable as Metroplex, who' larger and has fewer modes, so I'm happy to excuse the lack of articulation here.

   With so many disparate elements, Sixshot doesn't quite look like he transforms into anything - but that's the idea really. There are certainly alt mode elements that contribute to the distinctive look of Sixshot's robot mode, not least the wings on his back, adding a few centimetres to his height. My main criticism of this robot mode is a lack of Decepticon symbols - unusual for such a large toy. Sixshot has a rubsign & indent on top of that bridge (on his groin). I assume the designer couldn't find a spot that wouldn't look weird in one mode or other. Otherwise this is a decent robot mode - good colours, shape and features. The twin off white handguns keep him armed (and are used in most of the alt modes.

   And now, in no particular order, the alt modes...

PUMA MODE
   A robotic, angular, puma with a white head and red eyes. In essence, this is the robot mode on all fours with a headswap and some tweaking. The wings sit on his back, folded up, and you're able to attach the guns to the outside of these wings, or on the ankles (also the robot mode ankles). This is the only alt mode that doesn't use the guns, in fact - they're meant to be left aside. The colours end up a little darker than the robot mode since much of the aqua is now on his belly.

   There's about as much poseability here as one could hope for - the front legs can swing and the jaw opens, although you won't want to open it too far since the jaw opens out to reveal a cabin for the tank mode. As chunky and angular as this beast is, it works, since Sixshot is meant to be a walking street gang. This mode is actually one of the stronger alt modes, and is quite obviously a robotic carnivore (although whether or not it's a Puma is debatable - the tech specs call it a wolf-creature, despite a somewhat feline head).

TANK MODE
   This one's about as far away from the Puma mode as you can get - I'm choosing these randomly, mind you. Sixshot folds up into a lump, with the front limbs swung up to the sides, forming two treads each. The hindlegs come together and swing up and over to form a sort of turret. The wings kinda float on the sides, while that little bridge is now on top of the main lump of the toy. The turret doesn't swing, instead it permanently slopes upwards, with the two handguns on the outside and two lilac twin-cannons deployed from within the robot feet.

   While the turret can lift up, it's not really meant to, the joint moves awkwardly when you aim it. Instead all four guns can lift up and down to some extent. There are three small wheels underneath (two at the front, one at the rear), but Sixshot is too heavy for them to be much use - this tank tends to slide rather than roll. This is probably the weakest of the alternate modes, simply because it's a lump with moulded treads and a weak turret.

SPACE CRUISER MODE
   A vaguely X-Wing shaped ship, although with single, flat wings that emanate from underneath the fuselage. The hull of the ship is black towards the front and aqua towards the back, while the engines - his arms, are off white additions on the sides. The black winglets now come into their own as tailfins. The fuselage is surprisingly solid, since the boots fold up to form a very compact and solid hull. The white bridge is on top, smack in the middle of the hull. The handguns attach to the top of the wings, right at the tips.

   This is probably my favourite of Sixshot's alternate modes, and probably the most useful for a Decepticon. The solid hull and expansive wingspan make this an impressive ship. Granted there's not a lot of play value here - but the size makes him fun to hold in your hand and fly around (especially in comparison to a child's hand). There are four wide wheels underneath and the width allows these wheels to work fairly well - Sixshot actually rolls in this mode. The only real negative here is the somewhat obvious robot arms on the sides, which sport visible tyres. Still, they don't ruin things by any means.

ARMOURED TRUCK MODE
   A solid block again, but the bow of the ship has opened out to the sides at the front, leaving this otherwise solid block looking incomplete at the front. Purple dominates this mode, with the lilac wings forming fenders. The sides are white, along with the guns (on top of the fenders) and there's fair amount of black. Some chrome is visible at the base of the wings, which is a nice touch although a little random. The windows are silver stickers - maybe that's why the chrome is applied for this mode (it's also visible in tank mode, btw). There's a little communications dish that sticks out on top, in a sea of stowed bits, I guess it serves to detract from stuff like the puma head and robot feet.

   There's not much play value of course, although those big black tyres finally come into their own. The guns can swing out to the sides, giving Sixshot some aiming capability. Considering how much of the toy has gone into this mode, it's somewhat disappointing. Still, a truck is always going to ask more than say a robotic quadruped, so this was never going to be his finest mode because of the compromises it has to make.

PISTOL MODE
   This is basically the robot mode lying belly up with the wings folded down and clipped together as a handle. It works much better than this description implies though - the feet are in the same six-barrel configuration as they are in tank mode, the little communications dish of the truck mode is now a trigger. The arms are lifted up to give the gun a stock and the head is of course concealed, but the basic shape of the robot mode is visible from above. Other than the clip that joins the wingtips together (at the base of the handle), there's nothing dedicated to his mode.

   There's little play value. The trigger's designed to move back a little, and springs forward again - giving a pseudo firing mechanism even if he doesn't fire anything. The gun can be held in an adult's hand but might be a stretch for a child's hand. He's big enough that this thing can be held in two hands and still look fairly impressive - and it's this human scaling that makes the pistol mode work. Sure, it's a hobbled together, almost intermediate, mode, but it works in spite of all this.

GRIFFIN MODE

   Not a true mode, but you can deploy the puma head and wings from tank mode, flip over the turret and attach the handguns underneath the wingtips to form a sort of griffin mode. While the bodyshape is roughly than of an eagle, the head is clearly mammalian, so I'm calling this a Griffin. It's not as convincing as the puma mode, but is no worse than the tank mode. This mode reminds me of both Decepticon Clones simultaneously. Takara actually included it in the Transformers Generations book and featured it in the Headmasters cartoon, giving it semi-official status. A nice bonus, really.

VARIATIONS

   Sixshot was first released in 1987 and then reissued in 2002 in Japan. There were limited clear and black versions produced in 2002 - we're talking promo numbers. Greatshot is a Japanese only retool, with different heads.

OVERALL

   The first and best six-changing Transformer, Sixshot took the Triple Changer concept and went nuts. The end results are a good robot mode, some nice alt modes and a couple of dicey ones. The overall package has good play value - you can sit and transform this guy for ages without getting bored - there are 25 transformation sequences (36 if we count the griffin mode). While I can only call the puma and space cruiser modes as good modes, the others bring enough to make Sixshot a worthwhile toy. While he's a lot bigger than his Autobot counterpart, the hopelessly pathetic Quickswitch, this size allows Sixshot to really work as a multi-changer - better than any attempts since - 7/10

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