Transformers Generations Titans Return Voyager
Item No.: Asst. B7769 No. C0277 Manufacturer:Hasbro Includes:Blunderbuss, Superion micro-jets, pointy blaster, card Action Feature:Transforms from head to robot, also robot to aircraft carrier to jet Retail:$24.99 Availability: March 2017 Other: 33% Less Brick than G1
It's hard to believe that a new Broadside exists. The whole "classics" line started about 12 years ago with 4 deluxe toys and 2 voyager toys, and this would barely be expanded before Hasbro put them to bed in 2007. Many of those toys have since been remade and replaced by better figures, but a stunning amount of the releases represent fairly obscure characters that probably won't strike a chord with the nostalgia class. Hasbro and TakaraT-Tomy's uncanny ability to reuse parts to squeeze multiple characters out of one design no doubt helps us get less popular characters like Broadside, as so far the mold has been used for Leo Prime in Japan and Alpha Trion in the USA - with tweaks. A redeco with a new head will be released as Tidal Wave fairly soon. I'd say two of the modes are pretty good, and one is so hilariously mistransformed in the official photography that it casts an argument against itself.
This 1.5-inch robot Titan Master Blunderbuss is Sovereign (from Alpha Trion [actually Safeguard]) with a new backpack face - the mold itself is basically the same, complete with faceplate. There's not a lot to it - it has the same five points of articulation you love, and he can sit just fine in the jet cockpit or the weapon's seat. It's good enough. You'll like it.
Broadside is a nice robot but it's not going to set the world ablaze - it's a huge improvement over the original, though. The original toy is something of a legend in that it's a brick in all three modes, and he isn't very pretty either. The robot mode is on the happy side of acceptable, and since nobody knows how Broadside actually looks it's a good update. You think you do, but you don't. In all seriousness, the robot does have the het bubble chest, red legs, and grey arms like the original toy. The eyes are still red, and it has a fair amount of kibble. You'll notice jet wings hanging off his back, tiny wings on his knees, and a control tower wart on his shoulder.
Articulation is perfectly fine, more or less the same as Alpha Trion. The feet and the outer parts of the legs are pretty much the same. Most of the rest of it seems to be new parts - so there's very little shared here. It's really kind of amazing that there are any shared parts, because I'm left wondering why they even bothered. He has no problems standing, but has a giant hole on his crotch - complete with tabs from because that's how he likes it.
Transformation isn't as wonky as Alpha Trion, but that's because it's more intuitive - mostly. You know what an aircraft carrier looks like, and while you know what a jet looks like I don't know if the engineers really do. Everything folds away nicely, mostly, although some pegs and slots don't play as nice as one might like. With reference photos, you can probably figure it out without the manual.
The carrier is nifty. It's mostly new parts, plus tons of pegs for Titan Masters or the jet sprue. Five tiny, tiny jets are included to represent Superion's jet modes - all of which can be affixed to the flight deck. They're cast in clear blue, painted white, and they will be the first things you lose. Mark my words. I'm storing them in the canopy right now, but I anticipate them vanishing to the land of socks and wishes shortly. There are numerous pre-applied stickers on this toy, which makes my job easier. When you see the stripes painted over ridged areas, you're going to be grateful that someone else went through the trouble so that you don't have to do this. Of the two vehicle modes, this brick is best. Sure, it looks like a carrier with jet and robot bits underneath, but at least it looks like a carrier.
The jet is a weird mess. Robot legs become the back half, raised at a strange angle. The wings are on the ground, and cast in clear blue. Why? I like the front of the plane as it's colorful and inviting with seating for one inside. Given decades of experience designing robot to vehicle transformations, it's amazing this one came out as it did - trying to work in a triple-changing headmaster has to be an engineering challenge the likes of which I could never succeed at, but apparently neither can the designer here. It's just wonky. Some of the parts look good, but as a whole it doesn't quite fit together like some of the other, better jets in this and previous lines. I'd say that I've seen worse, but I'm at a loss to recall which toy actually had a worse plane mode than this one.
It's better and more dynamic than the original Broadside, but the same can be true of most door hinges. I doubt we'll see a bigger, better one down the line so just get this one if you want a Broadside. Hasbro's move to include micro planes was a surprising one, and something I'd like to see tried again on another toy in the future. It's a neat bonus that isn't sold on the packaging at all, so it's more of a surprise. I didn't realize they actually were in the box until I slid out the tray. I'm enjoying it a lot more than Alpha Trion, but man that jet mode. It's not pretty.
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