Cliffbee.com: Patrol Barricade Toy Review

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Individual Review




Name: Patrol Barricade
Series: Movie Tie-Ins
Allegiance: Decepticon
Alternate Mode: Mustang Police Cruiser

Thanks to Tiby for loaning me Patrol Barricade for this review



CAR MODE
Height: 5.5cm Length: 11.5cm Width: 7.5cm

   A metallic blue Mustang police cruiser with mid blue pinstripes, a red and blue painted stroberack on the rood and a black stamped Decepticon logo on the hood. Patrol Barricade is a repaint of CyberSlammer Barricade, in a colour scheme we've not seen elsewhere. Each door bears "SHERIFF" in mid blue while the windows are a dark metallic blue. The grille is black with silver headlights and yellow sportlights while the impact bars are vents on the hood are painted black. The taillights are red and there's another stamped Decepticon logo between them. This colour map is quite considered, and more than you'd expect at this size. It's not something we saw in the film, but as repaints go, this is a good one. His tyres are black with black wheels. While this Mustang is very cutesy, it's still quite clearly a Mustang, which I appreciate.

   The play value really relates to the gimmick, which is accessible in robot mode. He rolls very well and there are rubber belts on the rear tyres to assist the gimmick. Bumblebee has a rear axle so he rolls quite straight, which is nice. There's a switch underneath but it doesn't do anything in this mode, except to transform it.

   While the realism is lost thanks to the almost comical proportions, the paint job here is interesting and far from lazy. The car is clearly a Mustang, which is nice to see. Of course, it's a bit too much of a caricature for many adult fans to really appreciate. In context this is a fine repaint.

TRANSFORMATION TO ROBOT MODE

   Slide the white switch underneath back and the cabin pops up, revealing the robot. The front slides back slightly.

ROBOT MODE
Height: 11cm Width: 7cm

   A metallic blue robot which somewhat resembles Barricade. The blue brings out the detail much better than black could ever hope to, so while the colour doesn't really fit the character, there's more robot here than on the original. The front of the car is his toes and there's a false front on his chest, which is painted black with silver headlights. It's a little indistinct, but the painted black area makes a big difference compared to the all black of the original. His face has some black paint around the mouth and smatterings of silver over black on the eyes. His groin and forearms are also black. While the colour scheme is simpler than the vehicle mode, the paints used do enhance the robot features of this lump. So he's a lot better than his movie accurate counterpart.

   I'm not that impressed with this robot mode, since it's not well shaped, but at least the colours try. There are no legs, which means that the front of the vehicle doesn't really look like feet. There are no gaps between the torso and arms although the black forearms help a little. I've seen some fans compare the CyberSlammers to the Throttlebots - but they latter have legs, and while they're short, they ensure that the Throttlebot robot forms are robots - despite the bad proportions. The arms are simply the doors, and unlike the G1 equivalents (Throttlebots, Battlechargers), they don't lift out to the sides at all, so they make poor limbs and while they lift up, springs ensure they spring back down.

   The gimmick doesn't really justify the poor robot shape (or the chibi vehicle). The idea is that you push down the robot onto the base and it'll roll forward. Okay, so pushing him down does reform the vehicle mode as they planned - which is nice - but from a standing start he rolls around two feet. A little more if you push him along as you do it, but this isn't enough to really impress. He's far less impressive than the Throttlebots in this regard and about as impressive as the Battlechargers (but sturdier). The gimmick is dumbed right down for a young audience (we're talking 3 year olds), but I still don't see why such a poor gimmick was implemented when a better gimmick such as a pullback motor would have worked better, and allowed a better robot mode.

   A decent robot mode as Slammers go, but still barely a robot shape. The gimmick is unimpressive, the character isn't that clear, but at least this repaint improves on the original. The metallic blue and black works quite well aesthetically, by the way. Judging by the slow movement of CyberSlammers in stores around here, I don't think they've been that successful, but this is one of the better robot modes I've seen.

VARIATIONS

   None that I'm aware of, although he is a fairly inspired repaint of the original CyberSlammer Barricade.

OVERALL

   I really like the colour scheme and paint mask here - the vehicle mode looks good and the colours look good for the robot mode. The mould is as poor as the rest of them - the robot mode sucks, but at least the Mustang is well defined. The metallic blue and black colours work well, I would have liked to see them done on a proper Barricade repaint. As trivial as the repaint idea is, this is one of the better CyberSlammers. The gimmick is very limited, I wouldn't recommend more than one or two, but at least Patrol Barricade offers a unique colour scheme - 3.5/10

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