Hasbro Transformers Power Core Combiners Grimstone and Dinobots Hasbro, 2010
Day #62: January 7, 2011
Grimstone Dinobot Commander
Transformers Power Core Combiners 5-Packs
Item No.: Asst. 98461 No. 28607 Manufacturer:Hasbro Includes:Figure with 4 dinosaur drones Action Feature:Transforms from dinosaur to robot Retail:$19.99 Availability: November 2010 Other: Marge Simpson, Fran Sinclair, and a G1 Dinobot had a 3-way
At Toy Fair 2010, the super-ambitious Power Core Combiners sub-line was introduced as, seemingly, a lost descendant of the Armada/Energon/Cybertron toy lines. Unique five-piece spring-loaded combiners with Mini-Con compatibility brought new characters like Grimstone to life, in this case the only (so far) creature-based combiner in the line. Grimstone seems to mesh dinosaur-based Zoids toys with a slight G1 cartoon Dinobot aesthetic to result in.... well, frankly, a damned mess.
The full combined Dinobot team is a little ridiculous. While each individual dino-drone is pretty cool, the limbs really do look like a massive pile of parts. The parsaurolophus basically explides into something that barely resembles an arm, with his legs bending inward into a sort of claw. The dimetrodon (identified on the box as a spinosaurus) managed to make an adequate limb, but you'll need to fold down his tail first. The ankylosaurus leg also requires you to pre-pose his head and tail to fit properly, which sort of hampers the whole "automatic transformation" gimmick that this line relies on. The final limb, a pachycephalosaurus, looks less like a leg and more like someone stepped on a dinosaur.
The central core robot has an amusing head, which looks sort of like Marge Simpson and Fran Sinclair combined DNA with a robot to cook up a bizarre looking creation. His blue eyes match the original animated series' Dinobot character models, but it still looks like a huge mess of parts. As a toy it holds together fairly well, although our joints were extremely loose-- the figures knees were particularly floppy and this may hamper your enjoyment of the combined mode. It's better individually, if you ask us.
Each Dinobot drone is pretty great, and you're left wishing each had a unique robot mode to go with it. With various guns and weapons mounted to each, they have more in common with the Tomy Zoids toy line than most previously made Dinobots from Transformers, and I like them. There's not much else like them on the US toy market today, and they have limited articulation. The two-legged dinosaurs have articulated forelimbs, while the tails move on the four-leggers. Other than that, they basically stand around and look good. Hasbro's sculptors made sure they balance nicely, too, which is a lovely change of pace.
The central Dinobot commander, Grimstone, is said to be a triceratops on the package. Not only is this apocryphal (thanks, science!) but it's also a bit of a stretch. The dinosaur mode looks more like a styracosaurus or some other beast they just made up than everybody's favorite juvenile torosaurus. In robot mode, he's a little tubby-- it almost looks like Hasbro was going for a quasi-sumo look on this guy. Heck, I'd almost stake money on it. Just look at 'im. So tubby. Awww.
It's worth noting that his limbs look pretty great on other toys-- so if you have other Commanders around, try them out with the Dinobots. You may be happy with the results, I certainly was pleasantly surprised. I wouldn't suggest this as a stand-alone purchase. If you buy a large segment of the Power Core Combiners, he's fun to play with the others. He's also a neat dinosaur toy, so if you're a fan of Zoids or toys of that nature, this is pretty neat. Although the main mode is damned ugly, I can't deny that the little dinosaur drones are some of the most charming purchases I've made in ages. I wonder if any bored "child safety organizations" will protest the fact that they have guns all over them? Here's hoping, publicity never hurt nobody.
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