Cliffbee.com: Nemesis Strika Toy Review

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Individual Review




Name: Nemesis Strika
Series: Transformers Universe
Allegiance: Decepticon
Alternate Mode: All-Terrain Combat Vehicle



VEHICLE MODE
Height: 7cm Length: 12.5cm Width: 8.5cm

   A maroon and mustard yellow all terrain vehicle with six big brown tyres, some grey connecting pieces and purple highlights. Other than the purple, the dull colours all work well together. The purple is somewhat out of place but it's only really prominent on the missiles which sit in grey launchers at the back of the vehicle and around the spark crystal between these launchers. She has some very nice paint applications, with silver on the sides and front and lots of black "grease" along the sides and on the cockpit, which sits at the front of the vehicle. Despite the bright purple (almost lilac), the colour scheme comes off quite well - the detailed yet subtle paint job does a lot for Nemesis Strika - whom I prefer to the Beast Machines toy (simply called Strika).

   Nemesis Strika is clearly not designed as an Earthen vehicle, which is not a bad thing in this case, since it allowed the designers the freedom to beef this vehicle up without making it half-believable. Not realistic but at least she's not a poor attempt at realism. Strika's better for it, too - there's no doubting this giant, chunky, six wheeler is a killing machine from another world. With big wheels, twin launchers and lots of mechanical sculpting, Strika is clearly a powerful vehicle.

   There's no tech spec for this version of the toy, but since the original Beast Machines toy was female I'm assuming this one is too. It's refreshing that we have a female Transformer who's not intentionally dainty, and neither version sports any pink. The spark crystal is transparent and small cockpit window is purple, and that's as close as we get. There is some sort of insignia inside the crystal but it's covered by a stamped Decepticon symbol.

   All six wheels spin, and if you roll her along a table with a little downwards pressure will allow all six to roll. If you press down on the spark crystal housing the missile launchers will slide back and forth, alternating for a gatling gun effect. This looks great and will provide enough pressure for the wheels to spin. The missiles fire, using a ball-pressure mechanism that provides a lot of force.

   Aside from the misplaced purple this is a pretty good vehicle mode. The gimmick is simple yet effective, the colours are on the whole pretty good for a Transformers: Universe toy (I actually prefer the duller colours to those of the original) and the mould is a detailed one. As is often the case in this line of repaints, the paint mask is detailed, and it suits the toy well (not always the case in TFU).

TRANSFORMATION TO ROBOT MODE

   Complex and clever for a deluxe. The legs fold out from underneath and the front fenders become the arms. The cockpit lifts up and reveals her head, the missile launchers end up on the shoulders. The front set of wheels become her feet, the central set slot into her waist and the rear set fold underneath her back. The transformation back to vehicle mode has to be done right or she wont fit together properly, but is otherwise easy since she essentially folds up.

ROBOT MODE
Height: 16cm Width: 10m

   Again a fusion of mustard yellow and maroon, Nemesis Strika again has some hints of grey with purple on her elbows, waist and the missiles sitting on her shoulders. The feet are brown tyres, the other tyres are all partially hidden in her torso. The face is yellow with green eyes and a weird black mouthblock - her face is not human-like at all. The transparent plastic has disappeared however there's another stamped Decepticon symbol on her maroon chestplate to make up for the now hidden spark crystal. The colour scheme is slightly duller now, and the black paint gas all but disappeared. If anything she's a bit boring now, and while it's not a bad colour scheme this isn't as appealing as her vehicle mode's colours.

   The legs are fairly thin with wheels for feet, which are stable enough in themselves. The torso is big, bulky and back-heavy so while the wheels don't spin too much, the toy has a habit of keeling backwards, despite purple supporting struts coming off the knees which are there specifically to prevent her falling over. I'm glad they added the supports, but she still needs to be fiddled with when posing, and this instability bugs me.

   There's again very little here that would be considered feminine, which is again refreshing. Strika's overly robotic robot mode does make her a strange choice as a female character, but for an evil killing machine soft and gentle would be inappropriate anyway. She has rather strange hands, which are fingers inside the fender-forearms. The fingers are grey and run the length of the forearms, encased inside the fenders. Whether this is a deliberate choice or design shortcoming I'm not sure - but it's not a feature I like too much.

   Nemesis Strika's poseability is fairly poor by Beast Machines standards. Her head can lift up and down, the shoulders are double ball joints and the elbows a weird combination of swivels and inwards-bending hinges. The hips are ball joints with sockets at the back rather than the top of the joints and the knees are hinged. The effective poseability of her legs is almost nothing thanks to the weight of the toy and restrictive joints. Her arms are a lot more poseable but the shoulders are set back a long way from her chest (about an inch). The missile launchers still work as does the alternating action. Of course she's not stable enough for you to activate the gimmick with her standing unaided on the table, but it works fine if you hold the toy in your hands.

   The weaker mode, thanks mainly to her back-heaviness. The colour scheme isn't as nice as that of her vehicle mode, which doesn't help. The missile launchers still work and the way they've got her tyres out of the way is impressive.

VARIATIONS

   None that I'm aware of. As mentioned she is a repaint of a Beast Machines toy.

OVERALL

   A great vehicle mode with some nice paint detailing and a gimmick that comes off really well make Nemesis Strika a fun toy. The robot mode is unstable which brings her down somewhat but it's not enough to ruin the toy. If you like the Vehicon style you'll enjoy the vehicle mode. A pretty good repaint in the context of the Transformers: Universe line, recommended if you missed the Vehicon - 6/10

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