Cliffbee.com: Constructicon Maximus Toy Review

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Name: Constructicon Maximus
Series: Energon
Allegiance: Decepticon
Alternate Mode: N/A - Gestalt comprising Bonecrusher, Duststorm, Sledge, Steamhammer & Wideload.



COMBINED ROBOT MODE
Height: 27cm Width: 25cm

   The exact dimensions will depend on both pose and limb configuration, but will be within a couple of centimetres of the numbers above. Anyway, Constructicon Maximus's name hardly rolls off the tongue... why they didn't go with Constructicon Devastator like in TFU is beyond me - would have worked better both as a G1 tribute and for abbreviation's sake. The least awkward version of the name is CM so that's what I'll use for short here. I actually think "Buildtron" (the Japanese name) would have been better, even if it is somewhat awkward in English.

   Whatever you call him, this toy clearly pays tribute to G1 Devastator - Steamhammer, Sledge and Wideload all feature green and the chestplate is purple and the head black with silver detail. The feet and hands are transparent blue while Duststorm is solid blue. Wideload and Bonecrusher feature grey and the latter also brings some brown and yellow into the equation. The colour scheme is a little jumbled but there's enough green to keep things fairly neat, so long as Sledge and Wideload are on opposite sides of the robot.

   As with the original Scramble City Gestalts, all four small Constructicons can form either arms or legs. Bonecrusher and Sledge work equally well as arms or legs but I find Wideload and Duststorm work better as legs since their claw weapons make really poor hands. Unfortunately the shovels on Sledge/Bonecrusher will prevent these guys from forming a decent left arm, since Steamhammer's shovel sits on the shoulder and gets in the way. The cranes make for slender legs anyway, so perhaps it's best to mix and match. If you rotate the waist of the crane on the left arm, the arm has a sort of elbow and instead of the crappy claw hanging off the side of the wrist, you can partially open the feet to make a more plausible claw-hand.

   The shoulders and knees are all ratcheting joints of the same type - thanks to the limb swapping gimmick. So the shoulders rotate and the knees can swivel. The left arm is limited by the shovel shoulderpad no matter what you do, but otherwise the poseability is good - the knees are even hinged. The hips and shoulders swing in and out as well as back and forth. The footprints aren't huge, but he's still quite poseable thanks to tight hip joints and a rotating waist. It'll take a bit of work, but CM's lower body posing is great for a gestalt.

   There's a moulded purple Decepticon logo on the waist, forming the centrepiece of the lime green and purple torso. It's surrounded by white relief and there's dump-truck like grille sculpting on either side, a nice subtle Long Haul mimicking that makes the G1 homage work despite the greater range of colours. The head itself is fairly small, and with the big shoulderpad and bulky limbs formed from Sledge and Bonecrusher, it seems even smaller.

   The advance in technology means that unlike most G1 Gestalts his head and chestplate are integrated. His hands and feet are the accessories of the limbs, so there are no extra bits that are unused when he's split into his components. The chestplate is simply that of Steamhammer and the claws inherited from the cranes make terrible hands, but the hands formed from the payloaders' weapons are a lot better.

VARIATIONS

   None that I'm aware of, although as mentioned the Japanese version has a far more sensible name and was released as a boxset.

OVERALL

   Not quite as cool as my Superlink Bruticus but still a pretty good gestalt in his own right, CM's main flaws are by products of kibble on his shoulders and poor arm modes for Duststorm and Wideload. The name is typical of Hasbro's lack of direction these days - I just think of this guy as Energon Devastator. The components vary from the excellent Sledge to the downright bad Duststorm, but only Duststorm is a waste of space on his own, so I still recommend the set (although you may like to just get two Wideloads - which will add more green if you're after the whole G1 nostalgia thing). A handheld weapon would have been nice, but the other Energon gestalts missed out also, so he's not unusual in this respect. Worthwhile as a set and the G1 homage brings a fair bit of appeal - 7/10

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