Transformers Robot Heroes Review: Shanghai Shootout

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The first two of the Transformers Robot Heroes multipacks just hung around on shelves for years and it seemed like the second series was never going to show up. Then sometime after Christmas, Toys “R” Us and several close-out stores seemed to randomly discover cases and cases of the second wave. So if you really want these, they are still plenty of them available!

Assisted by the combining twins Autobot Skids and Mudflap, Optimus Prime searches the crowded streets of Shanghai for a Decepticon infiltration unit. Suddenly, Demolisher blasts through a wall of a building, and the chase is on. The crowded city is rocked as the powerful robots battle through the narrow back streets!

Based off the beginning of the second film when the military drops Optimus Prime out of a plane simply because they can, I think this figure is supposed to be Optimus Prime landing on the ground. The sculpt is a decent take on the movie designs that has been smoothed out for the toy. With one foot on the ground and the other about to come down, the pose is full of motion but in a different way than you’d expect.

Because honestly, it just looks like Optimus Prime is throwing a temper tantrum. With only cut joints at his shoulders, his clenched fists move up and down and that’s it. Plus the cloud of dust and debris just looks awkward still. The paint is okay but simplified, so his red flames have been replaced with just red paneling.

The twins, Skids and Mudflap, are present in their alternate, combined state as an ice cream truck. The original concept that the two of them shared a spark and thus would transform together was interesting but got ignored later in the film. So these two are combined in a bright pink and cream colored ice cream truck!

Stylized in a cartoony way like Cars, the truck is hopping in the air, supported from behind by a pile of pink frozen treats. The overall design isn’t bad with the bumper and headlights almost making a smiling face. But like the other vehicles, the biggest problem is simply that it is just a solid piece of plastic!

The next duo is Sideways and Sideswipe who are supposedly constantly at odds with one another. Sideswipe is the silver Autobot who transforms into a Corvette Stingray, a concept car that probably never made it into production making it one of the worst disguises possible. But his car and some clouds look as a toy is surprisingly bad.

Sideswipe is just kind of there. Nothing about his toy really looks like the concept car besides the window-windshield combo. Honestly, he kind of looks like a generic Mazda which really isn’t the look he should be going for. Throw in mediocre paint and a complete lack of articulation, and you’re left with a hunk of plastic.

Sideways is one of the two Decepticons in the pack. Vaguely shaped like the Audi R8 (and making him the only car not made by General Motors in the films), but Hasbro never got the license for the toys, so he’s just close enough. Lacking most the cartooniness of Skids and Mudflap, Sideways is a charcoal and graphite colored car with blue windows.

Unarticulated in anyway and twirling around in the dust, Sideways seems to be showing off some special power since his hubcap is repeated four times in the dust – like he’s able to move sideways or something. It doesn’t really make sense.

The “mega” figure in this set isn’t all that mega. Sure, he towers about Optimus Prime but when compared to a Sentinel or even The Fallen, he’s pretty small. But small or not, it’s a great scale that Hasbro should be utilizing in their Super Hero Squad line for characters like Man-Thing or the Hulk.

Demolisher has a fantastically weird design, kind of like a giant crab on wheels. His head is in the center with a wheel on the top and bottom. I guess it’s like a unicycle that’s also a hat. Both of his hands are massive silver claws.

Normally a Terex RH400 mining excavator, the scale on Demolisher is a touch off but still works. But while the packaging calls him Demolisher, he’s actually Scavenger because of his color. One was red with white highlights; the other was white with red highlights! But it doesn’t really matter. Whatever his name is, he moves at the shoulders and is supported by a cloud of chocolate milk colored plastic.

Like all the Cinema Scenes, the packaging can double as a backdrop or playset. But Hasbro made this one kind of odd, it’s like they didn’t know how to make something set in Shanghai so they just covered everything in Chinese characters – including the pavement! But I have no idea what any of it means.

This set can be found between $7 and$12 at many stores now, but even at that price, it isn’t worth it. The three vehicles are pointless, bland and wastes of plastic while Optimus is acting like a small child. Unless you’re a huge fan of Demolisher/Scavenger, this is a super easy set to pass on.

Transformers Robot Heroes Cinema Scene Multipacks
Battle for the All-Spark
Optimus Prime, Megatron, Ratchet, Starscream, Brawl, Bumblebee & Sam Witwicky
Battle of The Fallen
The Fallen, Megatron, Ironhide & Jetpowered Optimus Prime
Shanghai Shootout
Optimus Prime, Skids, Mudflap, Sideways, Sideswipe & Demolisher/Scavenger
Desert Devastation
Captain William Lennox, Skids, Mudflap & Devastator

Written by jestergoblin

April 19th, 2011 at 12:00 am

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