Cliffbee.com: Energon Galvatron Toy Review

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Individual Review




Name: Galvatron
Series: Energon
Allegiance: Decepticon
Alternate Mode: Cybertronian Jet

Thanks to Goktimus Prime for loaning me Galvatron for this review



JET MODE
Height: 15cm Length: 26cm Width: 33cm

   A purple jet with overhanging wings at the back, Galvatron has some silver highlights here and there, transparent amber wingtips and lasers on the air intakes and a silver black tank on top (that deliberately resembles Armada Megatron). The inner wings and tank mount are black and there is some metallic blue paint. The tank sports some purple paint as well as some transparent amber. The underwing engines are painted silver, as is the cockpit, while the tank is a slightly mismatched silver plastic. There are purple moulded - and painted - Decepticon logos on either wing, with white relief. Overall these is a good colour scheme, despite being quite a bright one. The colours are a very good match for those of G1 Galvatron, and more focussed than those of Energon Megatron, although not especially better.

   The engines sit underneath the wings. There's a transparent amber cockpit at the front of the plane itself, which is roughly wedge shaped, and taller at the back than front. The wings form an "M" shape with the inner wings sloping in and the outer wings sloping out. While it's far from being realistic, this jet works visually and works well for a Decepticon leader (there are shades of Thunderwing here).

   There's plenty of play value here. The tank not only detaches, but fires a black missile from its barrel. While the turret is fixed there is still another gimmick. Pressing down on the trigger will cause a firing sound, cause an LED buried under an amber panel to flash and fire the missile. The missile fires quite easily.

   Galvatron himself has a few tricks as well. If you lift up the purple wingtip panels the transparent amber cannons at the very tip extend (without lifting) and amber cannons fold out at both the front and rear of the wing - the entire assembly is geared so you can easily fold it away with the one reverse motion. The amber cannons on either side of the nose can move up and down, ratcheting to 45 either way. There are three rolling wheels, one under the nose and one underneath each engine, and all three fold up. You do have to watch that you don't fold away the rear wheels when you stand the jet on the table, but once Galvatron is standing, they'll stay out without any drama.

   This is not the nicest looking jet mode we've seen, but it's one befitting of a Decepticon leader and the colours work well with the name. The play value is for the most part fairly standard action features, but everything _works_ which makes a difference. The wingtip assemblies are well done and are the most unusual aspect of this jet mode. I do like the Thunderwing semblance, although I'm not sure it was intentional. A good jet mode overall - everything works how it should and nothing drags it down.

TRANSFORMATION TO ROBOT MODE

   Remove the piggybacking tank and set aside (if it's not already). Fold away all three wheels, unclip the engines from underneath the wings, swing them back and slide the wheel struts towards the front of the engines. Doing this will flip up his kneecaps, push out the feet and heelspurs _and_ deploy the feet and heelspurs (the auto deploy also auto stows the other way). Swing the now transformed boots into position. Rotate the wing plate on his back, fold the nose onto his back and fold up the wings. Pull down his shoulders, which will bring the arms down and out to his sides. Fold down his head and rotate the antennae and the robot mode is done.

   You have the option of folding down the cannons on his shoulders so they point forward - they look good in both positions. Clip the back of the tank into the top of his backpack (the butt of the nose), press the black button on his back and pull the tank out - the tank will draw out with a 10cm transparent amber blade attached! This blade can simply unclip and stow again for jet mode. The missile will, most likely, fly across the room as you draw the blade. Underneath the tank there are two clips which deploy and clip onto his forearm.

   While this is a pretty good ultra overall, the transformation is probably the most impressive aspect of Galvatron. The way the blade is drawn and the auto transforming boots are terrific features in their own right, and make transforming this guy fun.

ROBOT MODE
Height: 25cm (35cm with shoulder cannons up) Width: 13.5cm (24cm for the wings on his back)

   Again mainly purple, Galvatron has silver legs, while his feet, kneecaps and fists are black. There's a silver and red buckle on the waist which _screams_ G1 Galvatron, as do the tubular chest and the tripartite crown on his head. The blade and shoulder cannons are about all we see in the way of transparent amber - the rest is on his back now. This colour scheme is very unified, since it draws direct inspiration from a Galvatron homage in both mould and colours. There's a Decepticon logo moulded onto his chest, again this is painted with white relief. His face is painted silver with red eyes.

   With the still impressive wingspan on his back, tank-sword on one arm and those giant shoulder cannons, Galvatron looks quite imposing and well armed. The holes in his fists are standard sized, and while he doesn't have his own handheld gun he doesn't need one - so the option of giving him another Energon weapon is sufficient. You can attach the tank-sword to either arm although if you're going to do so with the blade forward his right arm is better suited (I'll explain why in a moment). I like that we have the option of both the missile launcher and sword here, but the missile just fires way too easily. While Galvatron has two amber cannons, one on either shoulder, he lacks the forearm mounted cannon seen in G1, and the tank can't really plug this gap. Having said that, it's a great weapon in its own right.

   The poseability is decent for a blocky toy with numerous gimmicks and autotransform elements, although I'd have hoped for more at Super size. The head turns, the shoulders rotate and the elbows bend. His hips rotate and his legs can lift out the sides while his knees bend. The feet and heelspurs can fold down (although they're springloaded and flip back). Galvatron is not the most poseable Super class toy out there, but for a vehicular toy with so many features, he acquits himself fairly well. The wings on his back can get heavy, but if he tips back you can easily fold them out to the sides - and they look good out there.

   There are again two main gimmicks here. The first is the launcher, which we've already covered and the second is the sword. When the blade is bumped from what was the left side of the tank, it presses an internal button that activates a fairly accurate swordfight sound (IE two swords clashing), and a red LED inside the tank activates - it's meant to illuminate the blade but the sculpting is too complex - even in the dark it's not very impressive. Because this gimmick only works from one direction, the right arm makes more sense since as he brings his arm down it'll strike and activate (the left side means he's lifting the blade, which generates a weaker slice since he's fighting gravity rather than using it).

   There are actually four Decepticon logos in this mode, by the way, but only one is immediately obvious. Galvatron's Spark crystal is embedded on his left shoulder and is hard to see from the front (but obvious from the left) while the base of the blade has a moulded logo. The last one is on a transparent amber panel on the front of the tank turret - it's also visible on the jet mode.

   The tank can of course be left to one side, either set aside or as a drone - you don't have to draw the blade if you don't want to. It can also be attached to his arm on its own as a missile launcher - although I'd recommend leaving the missile out and just going for an arm cannon instead. like the versatility here, and you even get a hardpoint on top of the turret to attach a Minicon (there's also a pair on the wingtips, actually).

   The Galvatron homage is the first thing you'll notice here, and I have to say very well done. The play value isn't quite as obvious but it's the strong point of this robot mode - which looks nice even if you disregard the tribute. His tank-sword is fun and there's enough poseability here to keep me happy. While Megatron feels a little bland at this size (the Ultra works better), the strong tribute makes Galvatron work well despite relative simplicity.

VARIATIONS

   A repaint of Megatron - which is the usual formula, but this mould is a Galvatron tribute anyway, so this repaint feels more like the original. No actual variants that I am aware of.

OVERALL

   The jet mode an unusual design, but the tank and wings give it enough play value to make it fun while the colours make sure it ends up looking nice. The robot mode drips with G1 Galvatron and the colour map looks good anyway - as well as contributing towards the tribute. The weapon is good, thanks to the blade, but the missile is annoying since it fires when you look at it from the wrong angle (I had to retrieve it three times during this review!). The transformation is fairly simple but very well engineered. I'd recommend this over the earlier Megatron version of the mould - 7.5/10

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