Cliffbee.com: Transmetal Rhinox Toy Review

Toy Reviews
Individual Review




Name: Rhinox
Series: Beast Wars
Allegiance: Maximal
Function: Strategic Defence
Alternate Mode: Rhinoceros



RHINO MODE
Height: 10cm Length: 14cm Width: 8cm

   A metallic blue robotic rhino with light brown head and legs, Rhinox has darker brown feet and horns. The blue body is chrome while the two brown plastics are metallic although not chrome. There's quite a lot of painted detail here, from his orange eyes to some bright green (a reference to the original Rhinox). The colour scheme is fairly simple and reminiscent of the original, so while Rhinox doesn't really stand out, I'm happy with these colours.

   This is a robotic rhino not just in sculpt but also in proportions, from the chunky legs to the wide, flat, front feet. The larger horn has a serrated edge while there are treads on the back of the hindlegs. There's nothing here that's really organic at all, in fact - which is how a Transmetal beast mode should be. Even the teeth on his snarling mouth look robotic, while there are subtle details like rivets and hoses here and there.

   Rhinox is unarmed in this mode, but has powerful looking legs and that blade-like horn - all he has to do is run at an enemy. All four legs swing at the hips and bend at the knees while the front legs also have hinged ankles. The front knees are restricted by the skis stowed on the back, but you can always flip them down under his feet if you want to pose Rhinox. The skis form part of his transport mode - the hindlegs swing down, bringing the treads into play (with the feet stowed inside). While it's a simple vehicle mode, it works well enough - even if it's nothing special.

   Rhinox's beast mode is solid rather than spectacular. Other than the skis getting in the way of his knees there are no real problems here. The chrome is quite extensive and mine shows no wear after a decade. The sculpt is detailed and suitably robotic while the play value is enough keep me happy.

TRANSFORMATION TO ROBOT MODE

   Complex and clever yet not difficult. The hindlegs fold up to become a backpack while the head splits to become shoulderpads, the robot arms are hidden underneath the rhino. The front legs become robot legs thanks to some clever hip adjustment. The backplate becomes the robot chest, with the robot head stowed underneath this plate in beast mode. Rhinox comes from an era where limbs where not simply rearranged on quadrupedal beast modes - Beast Wars' creativity has not reappeared in beast Transformers since.

ROBOT MODE
Height: 13cm Width: 12.5cm

   Rhinox is now mainly brown, with the chrome on his back. The chest, shoulderpads, arms, boots and head are dark brown while the thighs are light brown and the groin pine green. His face is yellow with green eyes and white teeth while there's a yellow paint spray on his chest. The colours feel more organic than they could with blue chrome around, the warm yellow paint is quite suitable. The colours are even less spectacular now but since they're quite appropriate I'm happy. There's a patch of the lime green paint on his chest, referring us back to the original Rhinox again.

   Just as the beast is quite robotic, Rhinox's organic theme is convincing - at least above the hips. The legs are shared with his beast mode, hence their robotic look. Rhinox's upper body is more prominent, so the organic aspects still dominate. The head is quite detailed and his face is based on that of Rhinox from the cartoon, which is a nice touch.

   Rhinox's poseability is good - the shoulders lift up out to the sides and swing, while the elbows are ball joints with hinges above them. The upper arms and shoulderpads are the same thing, which might sound odd but it works quite well. The hips are ball jointed, the knees and ankles hinged and his head turns. The skis will get in the way of his knee joints, so again you'll probably want to give Rhinox skis. His horn-piece becomes a hand-held weapon (the smaller horn is a handle), and works underhanded as well as held conventionally, it's a sort of icepick-think that looks rather menacing.

   Again a solid mode that's not quite spectacular - but Rhinox's robot mode is more interesting than his beast mode thanks to nice poseability. The sculpt is good - Transmetal II level actually - while the weapon is less forced than some Transmetal weaponry. Other than some hollow parts of his forearms (which you'll barely notice), there are no notable flaws here.

VARIATIONS

   There's an awful Fox Kids! repaint which I'd recommend against. This mould (and name) was reused in Armada, and modified to accommodate a Minicon.

OVERALL

   A good toy but one that lacks anything standout. Rhinox is well sculpted, has a complex paint mask, good poseability and a very satisfying transformation. The Transmetal theme is quiet successful with both beast and robot modes are rewarding. The vehicle mode isn't the most innovate amongst the Transmetals, but it's still good and fits the character well - 7.5/10

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