Cliffbee.com: ROTF Deluxe Ratchet Toy Review

Toy Reviews
Individual Review




Name: Ratchet
Series: Movie Tie-ins
Allegiance: Autobot
Alternate Mode: Search & Rescue Humvee

Thanks to Ratchet for loaning me Ironhide for this review.



TRUCK MODE
Height: 8cm Length: 12cm Width: 6.5cm

   A kiwi green Humvee with transparent blue windows. Ratchet has black plastic tyres, black bars around a black grille and a black rack on top. There's a grey missile launcher on his roof and a grey rack on the back which contains a black spare tyre. There are red stripes on either side with ECG kinks and the words "SEARCH & RESCUE" in green towards the back. He sports Autobot logos and some danger stripes on the doors. The headlights are gold while the taillights feature red, orange and white (which I can't recall seeing on any Transfomer - ever). The paint job is pretty similar to that of his Voyager equivalent, other than the addition of grey here. The colours work quite well and line up to those on screen nicely.

   While Movie Ratchet resemble an ambulance with his van shaped rear end, this version has amore sedan-shaped end (like a military Humvee). Other than that and obviously the size, the other main difference between this toy and the voyager is the missile launcher on top. The launcher does detach, mind you. There's quite a bit of green kibble visible from the sides, between his tyres. As is typical of movie toys, there's a lot of sculpted detail here, including sports lights on the front, door handles, side mirrors and windshield wipers.

   As is typical of movie vehicle modes, there's not a lot of play value here. The missile fires quite well and the wheels roll, but that's it. The missile launcher plugs in using a distinctly shaped post & socket - which I can best describe as a child's picture of a house - and so it cannot turn to aim.

   Pretty similar to the larger version, really - but there are a few changes here aside from the size. The missile launcher is a nice touch and the taillights really impress me. The kibble on the sides and the change to the rear end are detractions, so I wouldn't say this mode improves on that of the larger version. Still, there's some play value and the colours work.

TRANSFORMATION TO ROBOT MODE

   A complex transformation with a _lot- of twisting and panel folding, so I wont go through everything. Essentially, the kibble underneath becomes his legs, the front becomes his chest and the arms and head are concealed within the front. The top ends up folded up on his back, the sides folded up on his hips and shoulders. While he's a panelformer there are some nice elements here such as gears in his thighs that spin as you rotate the legs into place and a twisting shoulderblade during transformation.

ROBOT MODE
Height: 15.5cm Width: 12.5cm

   A green robot with the black grille on his chest, Ratchet has some grey, silver and black elements here and there. The headlights are visible on his chest along with a red stamped Autobot logo on his left hip (which is actually visible on the truck mode, albeit not easy to see). His face is painted grey with transparent blue eyes. There's a lightpipe but it's all but useless since there's a panel behind his head blocking all the light. The front tyres hover above his shoulders and the blue door windows are behind the shoulders. There's an awful lot of green here, which is consistent with the films, but he needs more colour in some areas (knees, forearms). It's a good colour scheme overall, even if the lightpipe is an utter failure.

   The bodyshape improves on the boxy shape of the voyager, especially in the thinner, lankier legs. There's more kibble mind you - the panels on his hips and the junk hovering over his shoulders are more prominent, although this toy is more poseable than the larger toy despite the kibble. Ratchet's torso is unusually small compared to his long legs - compared to most Transformers anyway (the proportions are about right for a human).

   There's decent play value here with the missile launcher able to plug into the outside of his right forearm. As you plug it in, little grey sections will gear around the handle and ;lock the launcher in place - providing a "mech alive" gimmick. The missile can again fire in this mode. Poseability is pretty good, with ball joints in his shoulders, ankles and hips. The head is also on a ball joint but it's very restricted - to the point where it can only wiggle. The elbows are hinged with rotators while the wrists are hinged and fold inwards. Unusually for a robot with a ranged weapon, Ratchet has open hands. The knees are hinged with rotators (featuring those gears in his thighs) while there are hinges above the ball joints. The ankles work surprisingly well - often Transformers with ball joints in their ankles end up unable to stand well, but the joints in his ankles are nice and tight, resulting in an excellent range of poses & a _lot_ of stable dynamic poses.

   A well proportioned robot mode although he has some kibble to deal with. This robot mode has a better shape than the voyager mould, and a far more interesting weapon. The poseability is great, thanks to the excellent ankles. The head's movement is awful, but the arms are very poseable, giving Ratchet excellent overall play value.

VARIATIONS

   None that I'm aware of, although there is a white Rescue Ratchet repaint.

OVERALL

   A good scaling down of the original toy - although the transformation is actually totally different, so it's more a scaling down of the concept. The vehicle mode is well detailed although it has some notable underside kibble and an odd choice of shape at the back. The transformation is complex and while he's a shellformer, there are some nice tricks. The robot mode has some kibble but also scores excellent poseability with a wide range of action poses thanks to great ankle joints. A more interesting design than the voyager, if not necessarily compelling for those who have that mould already - 8.5/10

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