Cliffbee.com: Energon Demolishor Toy Review

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Individual Review




Name: Demolishor
Series: Energon
Allegiance: Decepticon (which is hard to miss...
Alternate Mode: Mining Truck

Thanks to Goktimus Prime for loaning me Demolishor for this review



TRUCK MODE
Height: 8cm Length: 14cm Width: 7cm

   A mid green mining truck with a _huge_ backwards facing purple Decepticon logo in his tray, Demolishor has grey plastic tyres with silver hubcaps, grille and bumper. There is some brown robot junk under the lip of his tray and protruding at the back of the truck, under the tray. The cabin, which is on the left side, under the lip of the tray, is transparent green and there's a balancing block on the right side. The windows are metallic light blue and there are some black stripes on the sides of the tray which I suspect are meant to be danger stripes (although if that was the intention, it fails without yellow stripes in there). The colours are... gaudy. None are bad on their own, but the green next to a fairly bright brown with the transparent green is just a little much. Throw in the donwright cheesy allegiance symbol. That's not say this is an ugly toy, but Demolishor is far from realistic. Basically, he reminds me of a TonkaŽ truck.

   The Tonka feel continues into the general shape. Demolishor is one of those enormous mining trucks, and while he certainly feels bulky, the colours aren't the sort of functional colours we expect. The detail of his sculpt is okay but the robot junk ensures than even putting the colours aside, Demolishor feels more like a kid's toy than a model truck. This isn't a criticism as such, although I'd be lying if I said I like the kiddie feel here.

   The play value here is what disappoints me most. Demolishor isn't going for realism - which I can accept - but there's not commensurate play value. The wheels roll and that's it. The tray doesn't tip, and trying to move it will cause the truck to partially distort (there's an autotransform in there). The lip features two dead hardpoints, which is a nice idea but it's quite annoying that the lip itself moves freely - the hinge at it's base has no notches, and there's room for it to overextend underneath and on top. So attaching a MiniCon will be followed by re-aligning the lip.

   An unspectacular vehicle mode that feels like it's just here to support the robot mode. And considering how much of him is devoted to that mode's gimmick, that's probably the case. Demolishor's truck mode isn't realistic, isn't especially tasteful and lacks play value. I get the feeling the giant Decepticon logo in the tray was added to give this mode something memorable, but it ends up just feeling cheesy.

TRANSFORMATION TO ROBOT MODE

   Unclip the legs underneath, unclip the tray. Swing the legs forward and snap the groin into place, which will cause the grille to swing over, revealing his head, which pushes the transparent blocks out. Flip up his feet, rotate the blocks down and unfold to form his arms. Fold the lip back and them fold the tray down on his back.

   It's a simple transformation that's really geared to giving the tray room to work as a gimmick in robot mode.

ROBOT MODE
Height: 13cm Width: 10.5cm

   A green robot with brown boots, elbows and a brown head with a silver face and red eyes. Demolishor has some silver paint on his feet, groin and waist as well while his central chest is a metallic purple. There's a small purple Decepticon logo on the left side of his chest which is raised with green relief. The logo is actually visible in both modes, but it's well and truly overshadowed in the truck mode. The colours are still a little gaudy, but without the symbol in the tray, Demolishor looks a lot better in this mode. Having said that, I'm not a fan of his transparent green arms, so while the colours work better, they're still far from great.

   He's a stocky sort of robot with wide shoulders and a brutish rounded head - Demolishor looks like he's about pure force and not at all around to think. The rear tyres sit slightly uncomfortably on his ankles while the front tyres are under his his.

   The play value is okay, but it is dominated by the gimmick, which I'll come back to in a moment. The head and waist both turn, although the latter is quite restricted. The shoulders swing and lift out to the sides while his elbows lift and rotate out to the sides. The hips swing and lift out to the sides on ratcheting joints. The knees are hinged - these joints are quite tight with notches inside - and there are rotators immediately above the knees. The feet don't really move but his heelspurs are big, which is vital here. The weight of the tray on the back means that Demolishor isn't as stable as I'd like, so while his poseability is pretty good, you can't achieve the more dynamic poses without his keeling over. Demolishor's legs will hold - he just keels over backwards. Still, "relaxed" poses are easy enough.

   The tray pivots forward to become a missilerack - this is Demolishor's man reason for being. As it pivots, the centre of his chest and head also pivot forward, and there are extra joints in his neck so he can still look forward. This makes a hunchback with a huge missilerack above his head. There are eight transparent green missileheads visible, although the upper set are false with only the lower set firing. There are four small transparent green buttons on top of the tray, pressing them will fire the missiles maybe 50cm. I get the feeling that you're meant to be able to rapid-fire by running your finger along the four buttons, but they need to move back a little to fire, so rapid fire is tricky. This gimmick works well for what it is, but I'm not sure that the hunchback, simple transformation and truck mode are worthwhile tradeoffs for this.

   The gimmick is a nice idea, and so while his alt mode doesn't offer a lot of play value, Demolishor has a decent missile gimmick this time around. The shape is very stocky and the joints are tight, allowing Demolishor to stay upright in many conservative poses despite the weight on his back. The play value here isn't quite worth it - as good as the missile launcher is, I don't like the fact that it's only useful when the robot is deformed - especially considering how much of this toy has gone into the gimmick.

VARIATIONS

   None that I'm aware of.

OVERALL

   The gimmick is cool, and the idea is a really good one, but the Transformer built to accommodate it just isn't that impressive. The colours - especially the logo on his tray - work against the toy, and the lack of play value in truck mode doesn't help. The stocky robot mode works from an evil henchman angle, and the poseability is okay despite being limited by his gimmick. Considering how simple this toy is, I'm surprised that the gimmick is incorporated as badly as it is - 6/10

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