Cliffbee.com: Carnivac Toy Review

Toy Reviews
Individual Review




Name: Carnivac
Series: Generation 1
Allegiance: Decepticon
Function: Hunter/Tracker
Alternate Mode: Timberwolf



TIMBERWOLF MODE
Height: 6.5cm Length: 11.5cm Width: 5.5cm

   A brown and purple wolf with a pine green tail and pine green front paws, Carnivac has a white eyestrip. The colours used here don't gel at all, which is not helped by the fact that all three are distinct shades - we have a horrible mid brown, pine green and a brightish purple, each of which would be best suited alongside neutral colours like greys or whites. His colour scheme is better than that of Snarler, who has the misfortune of sharing this set of colours with Carnivac. Carnivac uses the brown quite sparingly, only on his rump and hard-to-see lower jaw - relying on purple more. It's still a bad colour scheme, but at least we know he's not as bad as he could have been.

   This is a pretty poor timberwolf. The hindlegs are spindly affairs while the front legs are beefier and much wider. The head is huge with a big, rounded, neck for some reason. The green tail is shorter than it should be and his back is gappy.

   There's not a lot of play value here, although it's about what you'd expect from this era. His legs all swing at the hips/shoulders while the front legs also have hinged elbows. His mouth is slightly open by default, with visible teeth, and while you can open it, the joint is too far back to be any use here - it's a transformation joint. The tail lifts up and down, and can actually swing right down for a submissive pose. Aside from the range of motion in the tail, all the jointing here is needed for his transformation. There's a hole on top of his neck where you can plug his brown gun it, if you like.

   A poor beast mode with bad colours and odd proportions. The play value is fairly minimal and much of it is a by-product of the transformation anyway. It's a shame because the choice of a timberwolf alternate mode is fairly unusual, but there's just not going for Carnivac here - and this is his better mode.

TRANSFORMATION TO ROBOT MODE

   Flip the tail up, fold out the rear to become his robot legs, fold the lower jaw down underneath his body. Stand the robot up, swing back his front claws, swing down his arms and fold his hands out. Swing the hindlegs back out of the way.

ROBOT MODE
Height: 11.5cm Width: 5.5cm

   A purple robot with a brown chestplate and brown boots, Carnivac sports some green between his boots and on his shoulders. His face is painted light pink, which continues the theme of an inappropriate mix of colours. There's a sticker on his chest sporting a Decepticon symbol. Again the colour scheme is poor, and while the placement of brown works here, the pink face against the purple head is such a poor choice.

   The bodyshape here is poor. His arms sit too high and too far forward while the head sits too far back. The upper jaw of his wolf mode sits behind the head as a sort of hood, expect it's far too high to be anything more than kibble. His boots look decent, despite being s single piece, since that green tail between them helps define separate legs. Sure it's cheating but it works. The flipside is that the boots have huge purple hindlegs hanging off them.

   Poseability is poor. The shoulders swing while the head is fixed. His knees don't bend, they only fold right back for animal mode. When the legs unfold for robot mode, the knees clip into place quite firmly, so any posing is out. The brown gun is far too big for this robot, he has to hold it no lower than 45 to clear the ground.

   A poor robot mode with bad proportions and lots of kibble. The colours aren't great - the choice of pale pink for his face bewilders me - and the play value is poor. If not for his appearance in the comics, I can't see why anyone would appreciate this robot mode at all.

The Pretender Shell

   A light grey wolf with sculpted fur, a snarling mouth with white teeth and pink inside the mouth - the shell looks far more like a wolf than the inner robot's alt mode. The bodyshape is pretty good, and aside from the teal tail the colouring is good. Okay, maybe red eyes aren't quite realistic, but they portray him as a bad guy.

   There's a sculpted black harness around the body and purple weapons mount on top - both are integral parts of the shell. There are detachable teal shoulderpads, which feature spines. You can plug the brown gun into the left side of the mount. He's fixed in a stalking pose with the front right paw ahead of the front legs paw.

   As awful as the inner robot is, this is a nice shell. The colours are more or less realistic, the bodyshape is good and the gun works well here. I don't like the choice of teal for the tail - especially since it sports an organic sculpt - but otherwise this shell is the highlight of this set.

VARIATIONS

   None I'm aware of.

OVERALL

   The worst of the Pretender Beasts, Carnivac's more notable for his portrayal in the G1 comics than this toy. The inner robot and alternate mode are poor - bad colours, bad shape and little play value. The shell is nice, but I'm not sure that I can recommend Carnivac based on the shell alone - there's not that much value in buying a Pretender and leaving the robot inside the shell at all times. Really this is one for fans of the character, or completists. If you don't fall into either of those categories, I'd not recommend Carnivac - 2.5/10

"Transformers" and other indica trademarks of Hasbro and/or Takara.