So it came to be: and blades is just that: Alpha Bravo in new colours with a new head. Same hand gun, same vehicle weapon. While the missiles work with his robot mode they look out of place with his vehicle mode which is missing the Landing Skids the original had. Adding landing skids that were removable and became swords for the robot, playing on his name, would have been a nice touch.
If he'd have been released first I think people would be more happier but as a second version? No. But there again looking back now you'd have ignored Alpha Bravo and bought the then unannounced Quicksling instead!
Future Repaints/RemouldsAs yet no Combaticons have been announced but the helicopter and robot modes are very close to what you'd expect for Combaticon Vortex. Design sketches packed into Blades' comic reveals a remould which seemingly incorporates Vortex's chain gun into his arms.
The long nose of the helicopter is also reminiscent of Combaticon Blast-off so a as that may be on the cards. A yellow repaint as Evac or Sandstorm is a distinct possibility but I think the shape of the Helicopter isn't quite angular enough to do Whirl, Springer, Spinister or Bulkhead/Quickstrike. Finally the Combiner Wars Optimus torso brings Energon Optimus to mind and Alpha Bravo would make a good helicopter drone Op 2.