Cliffbee.com: DOTM Air Raid Toy Review

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Individual Review




Name: Air Raid
Series: Movie Tie-ins
Allegiance: Autobot
Alternate Mode: AWAC Plane



PLANE MODE
Height: 7cm Length: 17cm Width: 15cm

   A green plane with army green wings, silver lines down the fuselage and on the tail and white undercarriage. As an AWAC plane, Air Raid has a prominent radar array on top - just in from of the tail. There's a silver Autobot logo stamped on top of the cockpit while the windows are colourless plastic. There are various white connecting bits here and there along with a mostly-concealed white hand nuder the tail. It's a nice enough colour scheme aesthetically, but most AWACs are some sort of grey to make them less obvious in the sky. It certainly isn't a tie in to the name, since the original is black, although the Scout Air Raid loosely tied into the first movie was olive green.

   This is a decent AWAC plane - colour aside. The overall look of the fuselage is broadly like that of a commercial airliner, as is usually the case for AWACs. The dominant feature here is the giant radar array on top, and this dominance helps hide the white robot fist tucked away under his tail. There's a hole on top of the fuselage behind the cockpit; allowing you to plug the array in there - while this provides some play value the hole is a little disconcerting. On the positive, there are single jet engines on each wing, complete with sculpted turbines.

   The white undercarriage consists of three false wheels, all of which fold away. It's not really much play value as he'll just tip back without the wheels (and has a tendency to do so even if they're down). The other aspect of the play value here is the radar array, which can detach and plug in just behind the cockpit, as mentioned. You can then slide forward the button on the back edge, causing the sides to swing forward and a gunbarrel to pop out. It's not an especially convincing weapon and like most of these MechTech weapons there's no way for you to clip the weapon mode in place; it'l retract as soon as withdraw the (fairly significant) pressure from the button.

   It's nice to see an AWAC plane - even if green probably wasn't the best colour choice. The colour scheme is nice enough if unrealistic, and the sculpted details work well enough even if the level of detail is probably slightly less than what we're used to on movie toys. I'm not a fan of the action feature at all - if anything it detracts here. Overall it's an unusual choice but sadly an unremarkable, somewhat flawed, execution.

TRANSFORMATION TO ROBOT MODE

   There's a lot of twisting so I'll summarise. The top of the fuselage becomes his legs and the support struts for the radar array cleverly become his feet. The chest is the underside of the fuselage between his wings - including the rear wheels. The head automorphs from within the fuselage as the nose folds onto his back, the wings also end up on his back. The tail section becomes the arms, with the tail itself becoming his right hand while that poorly concealed fist is his left hand.

ROBOT MODE
Height: 17.5cm Width: 11cm

   A green, army green and grey robot, Air Raid has some gold & silver painted highlights here and there. The legs and forearms are largely grey while the upper body is a mixture of army green and "Hasbro" grey with some green and gold areas. The head is army green with a silver mouthplate and transparent blue eyes & a rather aquatic looking silver crest. The is a lightpipe, but it's not a very good one. The colour scheme works reasonably well, although I'm not sure I like the plain green legs and barely green upper body - the colours work well but the balance is a little off. There's no Autobot logo visible here.

   Nothing in this mode really reminds me of any previous Air Raid toys. There's no unifying theme here, either; the wings look good standing up behind his shoulders but the aquatic-looking crest is out of place and the long lanky limbs don't work so well. I can see that the designer has tried to do some interesting things with the transformation, but the robot mode does suffer as a result. The tail-hand is awkward but I guess works well as a melee weapon.

   This melee weapon is the better weapon choice here as the gun formed from the radar array is again fairly useless without any way to lock in open. It's also meant to be a shield - it just looks like Air Raid is holding the radar array in his hand though - he'd need to be able to hold it at 90 for the shield concept to really work. Poseability is pretty good with ball joints in his shoulders & hips while the knees and elbows are hinged with rotators. The left wrist is also a ball joint, the right one more of a flexible stalk for the tail. The heelspurs are hinged and the head rotates while the waist is fixed.

   A lankly robot mode with somewhat unbalance colours, Air Raid's robot mode suffers for his transformation. I don't dislike this mode but it's hard to get excited since there are too many shortcomings. I do dislike the right hand/tail - it's little more than kibble really - and wish they'd done something better with the radar array in this mode. This mode neither display sore plays well.

VARIATIONS

   None that I'm aware of.

OVERALL

   A fairly forgettable toy, Air Raid's vehicle mode is something different and I like him for that, but it's hard to find anything that really stands out in a good way otherwise. The transformation is quite clever - I do like how the struts become his feet - but there are a lot of minor flaws here & too many of those are avoidable (such as the useless gun & the choice of a green AWAC). I do like this toy, but it's definitely one that missed out on it's potential - 6/10

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