Tuesday, 3 May 2016

G2 Skydive & Air Raid, Botcon Cicadon & Terrorsaur and Unite Warriors Ghost Starscream & Curse Armada Thrust

Generation 2 Skydive

After lying fallow since the first two waves of the line the Skydive/Air Raid mould gets a large amount of usage early in 2016. The first time we see them again is in the Generation 2 Superion set which was hinted at in May 2015, revealed at SDCC 2015 pre show breakfast and finally on sale very late in December 2015/early January 2016.

As the name suggests, this is the the G2 Skydive colours mapped onto the Combiner Wars Skydive mould and it looks great.

Generation 2 Air Raid

Similarly G2 Air Raid's colours are then used on the Combiner Wars Air Raid toy.

As ever I'm reminded that while 1986 Air Raid looks like Skywarp, G2 Air Raid's colours remind me of Thundercracker!

The Superion Boxset was available through online retailers such as Amazon.

Botcon 2015 Cicadon

Reusing Sky Dive as a vehicle version of Cicadon kind of makes sense as both are flyers though the red colouring chosen doesn't match how people remember the toy and is purely from his few seconds on-screen during the Beast Wars story Agenda. Nevertheless a red jet is always welcome and he looks very nice even if, unlike some of his team mates, he doesn't have a new head.

Botcon 2015 Terrorsaur

The reveal of the Botcon 2015 Giftset artwork set a precedent for what was to follow at the show by unintentionally revealing a toy before it was intended when it showed a small jet Terrorsaur in the top left of the drawing. Botcon then, a month before the convention, revealed their attendee figure before the show for the first time revealing that Terrorsaur was a red repaint of Air Raid with a new head.

Just like Cicadon above this toy looks good in red and makes a great companion piece for the above set. There's a superb orange pant job on the nose which makes you think of Terrorsaur's beak.

Unite Warriors Ghost Starscream

As you might be able to see from the above, I think that the Air Raid version of this toy makes a better Decepticon jet than Sky Dive. So when Grand Galvatron was revealed it was a little bit of a surprise to see Starscream from Sky Dive, even with a new head.

Even more surprising is it's a clear Starscream, as a version of the character post his movie elimination at the hands of Galvatron! Now I'm a sucker for clear repaints but with Transformers they have a habit of not lasting too well with repeated stress on the joints causing cracks. However the plastic used on this toy feels different to that on other clear repaints with a slightly rubber feel to it. Almost the entire toy is cast in clear plastic, bar the dual gun, upper legs & arms, which are solid grey, and the waist which is red. It's not obvious what colour the head is here because it's painted, but my guess is it too is red, matching the waist, because all the other versions of this toy have had matching heads and waist. The combiner connector, which will get some punishment, is also wisely solid plastic and moulded in yellow meaning in robot mode it does a great job of impersonating Starscream's cockpit which is also usually on his chest.

Takara Tomy have done a great job on the entire Grand Galvatron set but Starscream is one of the real standouts as you can see in this gallery.

Grand Galvatron is Unite Warriors set UW-07 and was released as a TakaraTomyMall exclusive in late April 2016.

Unite Warriors Curse Armada Thrust

Various identities for the two jets were bandied around after Grand Galvatron's silhouette tease but Armada Thrust wasn't one of them. Just like Starscream and his repaints are better suited for Air Raid, Thrust's original jet shape lends itself more to Sky Dive. However a cracking deco mixing two shades of grey with green makes up for that with the green combiner peg aping the central green stripe on Thrust's chest and a paint app on the left hand side of his chest matching the original. The job is completed with a brand new head, reminiscent of the original but also resembling Revenge of the Fallen Dirge.

I think Thrust will be overshadowed for many people by the others in this set but he really is a crackingly good toy as This Gallery shows.

Future Repaints

I've already remarked on the resemblance between the Air Raids in jet mode and Thundercracker & Skywarp: I'd like to see these two done properly from that mould with the right colours on the robot too. It therefore makes sense to me that Starscream, Sunstorm and Acid Storm would also make good repaints for Air Raid. Thundercracker and Skywarp might be a harder sell given their similarity to the G1 and Combiner Wars versions but could be done if the body parts were changed too. Alternately another wing mould to precisely mimic the F15 would be good.

The swing wing F-14 design also automatically lends itself to doing Jetfire or his downsized Cyberjet version Hooligan.

The Armada Thrust head could be reused on one of Thrust's repainted in red or blue, in the Armada line, or in yellow and white as Universe Sunstorm or reused to form Revenge of the Fallen Dirge or his repaint Hunt For The Decepticons Jetblade.

No comments:

Post a Comment