If there was a short list of least likely candidates to finish up Combiner Wars, I would put Sky Lynx at the top. Other than name-only characters and a reissue in Japan, the dino bird has been largely ignored since the original toy came out in the USA nearly three decades ago.
While it looks like Hasbro has plans for this mold in the future, this debut turned out to look exactly like you might hope Sky Lynx would. Having said that, it can't split in to two parts like the original so you don't get the bird mode and the puma mode - you just got a weird shuttle with undercarriage junk and a weird four-legged robo shuttle thing. Also a combiner torso.
In the box is his "robot" mode. It's sort of a beast, it's sort of a monster, and it's sort of ugly. They did a nice job with it, providing him with an articulated head, multiple neck joints, a tail, an opening jaw, and moving toes and knees. The hips can move out in spots too - they really put some work into making this more than just another goofy update. My only real complaint is that your enjoyment of it will rely entirely on how you pose it. If the weight is mostly on the back legs, depending on how the back legs are posed, it may sag a bit as the blue claw pieces aren't exactly sturdy. Otherwise? Fantastic. Deco is sharp, but not awesome - after all, to be true to the original you can't be too crazy.
Transformation is pretty simple. The legs fold in, the head folds in, the wings fold in... there's not a lot to it. The engineering is mostly solid, and it's not terribly complicated - but I did have some snags trying to guess what went where. For example, the "swords" seem to be pretty useless, but maybe you will like them more than I do.
Deco is on the happy side of good - lots of gold, including a gold border around the Autobot symbols on the wings, really give it some personality while the red, white, and blue undercarriage no doubt makes you think of the country with the matching flag. You know the one. A couple of spare wings popping off the back at 45-degree angles appear to be superfluous, but they provide some added detail and texture in the combiner robot mode. Not enough that you'd miss them, though. It's a cute little shuttle, and graded on its own terms it's really quite nice.
One of the nicer details of the shuttle mode is a tiny loading ramp in the blue section near the ground. Maybe it's an elevator - I'm not sure. Either way, it's a cute detail.
As far as I know Sky Reign is new - if there was ever a combiner based on this design, I don't know about it. It incorporates the excised puma mode's head as the combiner head - nice! It looks good, but the real question is "why is this?" It holds together pretty well and the combined team actually looks pretty slick. I didn't expect that. It's such a monster that I really don't know how it should be displayed, because to deny myself a Sky Lynx in the name of Sky Reign seems ridiculous. Then again, everything about this toy is ridiculous, and for that reason you should get it.
His two "tail" swords merge to make one big sword, which I didn't realize at first. Each one's "tongs" disguise little teeth to make them 5mm-compatible, so that's actually pretty fantastic.
Unless you have a G1 original or reissue Sky Lynx, you probably want/need this one. I've never played with the original so I can't vouch for "better" or "worse, but I can say it's absolutely different enough to be worth your while. You're not going to see many more toys like this one, particularly of this character, so don't be shy if one comes up for sale.
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