Cliffbee.com: Snarl Toy Review

Toy Reviews
Individual Review




Name: Snarl
Series: Generation 1
Allegiance: Autobot
Function: Desert Warrior
Alt Mode: Stegosaurus



STEGOSAURUS MODE
Height: 9cm Length: 15cm Width: 7cm, 8.5 if you mount his missile launcher

   A pretty good Stegosaurus, although his body is a tad short. The tail could be longer, too. He has the nice small head he's supposed to though. Very mechanical looking, more so than most Dinobots. Whereas his friends have nice big blankish panels, Snarl has stickers with various mechanical designs all over his body. The only remotely animal looking parts are the fins on his back, but you have to wonder how many Dinosaurs had chrome gold skin...

   Like all Dinobots, his base colour is grey, but this guy is only behind Swoop in terms of variations on that theme. His plates, tail, forelegs and rear feet are all chrome gold. His rear lower legs are smoky transparent plastic, as is his head. Inside his head you can make out chrome gold patterns. The rear half of his body is red, and if you attach it to the rear shoulder, his missile launcher is black with a grey trigger & collar. His eyes are dark red, so they kind of blend in to the rest of his head, though I'm not sure this was intentional. Oh, and his Diaclone cockpit isn't accessible in this mode. You have to lift the rear assembly of plates (ie begin to transform him) to access it on his robot chest.

   The biggest flaw he has in this mode is the weakness of the tabs holding his lower rear legs in place. One of mine has broken off, but the other one pops out with great ease anyway. His robot forearms then tend to pop out. This problem can be largely solved by standing him, where his weight keeps the lower legs in place. Still, it's a pain. This would have been a lob better had they used slide tabs not springs to slide his forearms out. The odd thing is that both Grimlock & Slag use slide tabs for their fists, but Snarl doesn't

   Not exactly poseable, you can move the legs, but if you touch the rear legs expect them to pop open. His front legs have movable knees also.

TRANSFORMATION TO ROBOT MODE

   Pull the front section and rear section apart about a centimetre, swing his forelegs over into grooves on the side of his body (they're very obvious). Split the head and fold the halves to the side. Pull the legs (body halves) apart and flip them over, spin the lower robot section you've just formed around and push it back in. Split the tail and fold the halves to the sides, flip the lower rear legs back (if they haven't done so already) and extend the lower arms (if they haven't already) - basically you do this by touching them till the springs go off. Swing the arms down to the sides (or further so they point forward), fold back the plate assembly and swing up his head.

   Probably the most complex of the Dinobot transforms (and the only reverse-transform), but not the best (I'd give that honour to Sludge). It's clever, but there's a couple of little problems they could have addressed. As I've mentioned the springs in his arms don't do much for me. They really affect the stability of the Dinosaur mode. To add insult to injury, the robot forearms aren't great anyway. Still, the way they get rid off the plates for the robot mode is clever, and the wings do look good.

ROBOT MODE
Height: 14cm Width: 15cm wings

   Not as show accurate as most Dinobots, Snarl has probably the worst robot mode of the lot. His head is a tad small, as are his waist and thighs (which are made to look smaller than they actually are by his lower legs, which are big). But my main gripe is the lower arms. They're tiny. This guy's been taking steroids big time, because his biceps are huge, in terms of bulk _and_ length. What's most disappointing is the fact that you can easily see how the arms could have been a lot better - swing the forearms out of the biceps (ala Sandstorm), or just make their casing smaller and they'd be bigger compared to the biceps. Although the latter wouldn't address the length issue, since they're as long as they can due to the swivels needed for arm movement.

   Colourwise he's a typical Dinobot - with a standard red chest & grey limbs (with breakouts of chrome gold on his legs), black thighs & waist, black lower arms & head, gold wings, along with two plates that sit either side of his head.

   The overall effect is a rather bulky looking robot that doesn't look much like his animated counterpart. Although the cartoon really should have done more with his wings, they look awesome. And his Diaclone cockpit sits on his chest, so he could hold a Matrix if you like the name Snarlimus Prime (c8

   I know I sound harsh on this toy. I don't hate him by any means, but if you put him next to the other four Dinobots (and I have the set), you see all his flaws, since they don't have flaws to the same extent. Also, I got the (fairly show/comic accurate) Actionmaster Snarl first, and he looks quite different to the Dinobot since they had to use creative license to clean up the limb proportions to make him an Actionmaster. As a side note: I recommend the AM Snarl. It rocks (c8

   Like most Dinobots, he can move his arms (although I wouldn't put them straight up, since his lower dino legs simply hang behind them), and he can bend his knees.

VARIATIONS

   None, Strictly speaking... though he was redone as a Classic.

   He was released again in G2 in Silver, Green & Red versions. The biggest differences (colours aside) were the loss of the rubsign and the gaining of a G2 Autobot Stamp.

OVERALL

   The weakest Dinobot, but not a total disaster. The Dinobots still stand out as an good example of "you don't need a stupid gimmick to make a good toy" - something lost on the designers of late G1/G2/some BW & BM toys. Also, he's the only Dinobot with no chrome silver, having all chrome gold (being a desert warrior, I suppose). His major problem (those lower Dino legs) aren't so much of a problem if you have a brand new toy, but they become one real fast. Snarl is a good toy, he just could have been better. Still, he'd be the last Dinobot I'd recommend (ironically, he's the first I got) - he doesn't feature much in TF: The Movie and frankly, the others are better - 6/10

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