Cliffbee.com: CyberSlammer Cliffjumper Toy Review

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Individual Review




Name: Cliffjumper
Series: Movie Tie-Ins
Allegiance: Autobot
Alternate Mode: 2008 Camaro

Thanks to Tiby for loaning me Cliffjumper for this review



CAR MODE
Height: 5cm Length: 11.5cm Width: 7cm

   A red Camaro with silver and black stripes on the hood (but not the spoiler), Cliffjumper is a repaint of Bumblebee with less paint. He has dark blue windows, which lose the metallic sheen of Bumblebee's windows. The taillights are unpainted red while the grille is black, headlights, sports lights and Chevrolet logo on the grille are silver. His tyres are black with silver mag wheels. The colour scheme is very similar to the normal toy, save for the loss of transparent plastic on the windows. Having said that, the proportions are very kiddie, so the realism is greatly reduced.

   The play value really relates to the gimmick, which is accessible in robot mode. He rolls very well and there are rubber belts on the rear tyres to assist the gimmick. Cliffjumper has a rear axle so he rolls quite straight, which is nice. There's a switch underneath but it doesn't do anything in this mode, except to transform it.

   While the realism is lost thanks to the almost comical proportions, the paint job here is actually very good. The level of detail is respectable if, if not great - enough to make the Camaro recognisable, not enough for a realistic look. While this car mode might work for a 3 year old, it's a bit too much of a caricature for many adult fans to really appreciate. Still, this is his better mode. I don't think it's as successful as Bumblebee, the loss of metallic windows means Cliffjumper looks like something out of Cars.

TRANSFORMATION TO ROBOT MODE

   Slide the white switch underneath back and the cabin pops up, revealing the robot. The front slides back slightly.

ROBOT MODE
Height: 11cm Width: 7cm

   A red robot that somewhat resembles Cliffjumper. The front of the car is his toes and there's a false front on his chest. The face sports some black with blue eyes and the false grille is painted black with silver headlights. There's a silver Autobot logo on his chest, the fists are painted silver while there's some silver on the groin. The colour layout departs from the original's colours - mainly because Hasbro has used a lot less paint here than on Bumblebee. It's far simpler than the deluxe and relies too heavily on red. The head sculpt is the highlight here, on what is a very disappointing robot mode - the lack of paint really hurts convey the robot on this lump of plastic.

   I'm not impressed with this robot mode. There are no legs, which means that the front of the vehicle doesn't really look like feet. I've seen some fans compare the CyberSlammers to the Throttlebots - but they latter have legs, and while they're short, they ensure that the Throttlebot robot forms are robots - despite the bad proportions. The shape here is far from humanoid, the head is the only instantly recognisable body part at a glance. The arms are simply the doors, and unlike the G1 equivalents (Throttlebots, Battlechargers), they don't lift out to the sides at all, so they make poor limbs. There's not much of a gap and while they lift up, springs ensure they spring back down, so we can't even use the arms to help with a humanoid shape. The elbows are sculpted bent anyway, so with the arms down he's pointing his fist forward. Well, the left fist - the right hand is in canon mode. The profusion of red makes the arms blend in with his torso, so Cliffjumper's robot mode isn't as distinct as Bumblebee's, despite the mould being identical.

   The gimmick doesn't really justify the poor robot shape (or the chibi vehicle). The idea is that you push down the robot onto the base and it'll roll forward. Okay, so pushing him down does reform the vehicle mode as they planned - which is nice - but from a standing start he rolls maybe a metre - which is further than my Ratchet, at least. A little more if you push him along as you do it, but this isn't enough to really impress. He's far less impressive than the Throttlebots in this regard and about as impressive as the Battlechargers (but sturdier). The gimmick is dumbed right down for a young audience (we're talking 3 year olds), but I still don't see why such a poor gimmick was implemented when a better gimmick such as a pullback motor would have worked better, and allowed a better robot mode.

   A poor robot mode. The gimmick just isn't that impressive - I can see kids becoming bored with it awfully quickly. I was about eight years old when the Throttlebots came out, and had hours of fun with them - I can't see today's kids really appreciating this concept. Judging by the slow movement of CyberSlammers in stores around here, I don't think they've been that successful. Most of the positives Bumblebee managed are lost here thanks to the cheap removal of paint.

VARIATIONS

   None that I'm aware of, although as mentioned Cliffjumper is a repaint of Bumblebee, which seems to be Hasbro's favourite easy repaint.

OVERALL

   The CyberSlammer concept is very limited to begin with, so a repaint into a non-movie character is a bad idea, and the execution here is even worse since every change to the paint job is designed to lower production costs on Cliffjumper. The robot mode really needs more colour while the vehicle mode would look okay with metallic windows. The gimmick not enough to really justify all the shortcomings of this toy as a Transformer, and Bumblebee is frankly more compelling. If you want a movie Cliffjumper, get the original - at least the mould is good on that repaint. Avoid this one - 1.5/10

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