Series: Generation 1
Alt Mode: Helicopter
Height: 4.5cm Length: 13cm Width: 9cm (widest length of rotor)
Vortex's helicopter mode is primarily grey, with green detailing - mainly his two side guns and his front mounted gun. The weapons are optional, but I'd recommend putting them on. The rotors black (the rotor peg is green, BTW). His cockpit has black painted windows. Oh and if you have the original, not the classic, he'll have a rubsign indent, and maybe even a rubsign, on the left just behind the window.
Not a bad helicopter, the detailing is OK, although not spectacular. The gun on the front is a nice touch, and both rotors spin freely. Has two wheels under the cockpit and another under the tail - all roll. Like all the other Combaticons, the colours are dark & dull, but this isn't a bad thing, especially when you consider that the G2 Combaticons look like distress flares.
TRANSFORMATION TO ROBOT MODE
Remove the front gun which will later become his handgun. Pull forward the cockpit, flip it forward 180 degrees and slide it up relative to the helicopter to form the legs. Fold the tail rotor & fins under the tail, extend the tail, split it and fold the halves down to the sides to form the arms. Removing those sideguns is optional - I leave them attached because 1) he wears them in the show and 2) they look cool. Removing them exposes the pegs they mount on, anyway. Last rotate the rotor piece 180 degrees.
Height: 8cm, 12cm to top of rotor Width: 5cm, 6.5cm with side guns, 9cm rotortip to rotortip
Well, you now have a mainly grey robot, with green thighs, head & sideguns. His eyes are red which matches the show. His chest is purple, and can be either a painted metal plate of a purple plastic plate.
He has no hands as such, rather outlines of hands inside his arms, which are simply the halves of the tail. This has never bothered me in the slightest, since he has cool quasi-weapons, but more on that in a bit. His feet are the cockpit and move independent of each over to transform, but don't really move in robot mode. His shoulders are ball joints, allowing for great poseability for a G1 toy of this size. His handgun attaches to a post on the inside of his right arm, and if you want he can swing a buzzsaw (the tail rotor) out on his right hand, and a blade (the tail fin) on his left. OK, so these aren't intended features of this toy, but they work quite well.
Good colours, good weapons (even if partially by accident) and good poseability mean Vortex has a good robot mode with good play value.
There's both the metal chested and plastic chested versions as previously mentioned, as well as the (plastic chested) Classic version with the rubsign indent removed. He has since been revisited as G2 Vortex, Target Hawk of Battle Gaia and Hepter/Rotor in Car Robots/Robots in Disguise.
A very old mould now, and well used. But it's a good one, so I really have no problem with it being reused. In fact the 1986 vintage Combaticons sold a lot better than the 1994 vintage Gobots around me during RiD. Good colours, good poseability, play value and he's in the original cartoon. Of course, you need him for Bruticus. Even as a standalone toy, I'd recommend getting Vortex, or one of his reissued cousins. It's a good toy - 8/10