Transformers Generations Combiner Wars Legends
Item No.: Asst. B0971 No. B1797 Manufacturer:Hasbro Includes:Trading Card Action Feature:Transforms from Motorcycle to Robot Retail:$9.99 Availability: May 2015 Other: Once a leg, now a chest ornament
One of the sixth members of a Combiner Wars team, the Transformers update of Protectobot Groove (the first of two) is basically a hood ornament. The motorcycle is pretty much in alignment with the rest of Defensor's team, because a motorcycle should not be huge. It's a good vehicle fit, and it plugs on the big robot just fine - so if you can handle change it's great. If not, you already hate this.
At about 3 1/2-inches tall, this is a perfectly nice little robot toy - but it's not a limb. This means it's a perfectly enjoyable toy, but fans of a certain age are not necessarily welcoming of change in a line where the very concept is intrinsic to the brand name. (A bigger Groove [FOTD #1,449] was sold as a shared US exclusive and in Japan to use as a limb, too.) The little guy's colors vaguely match the original toy and cartoon model, with a nice visor and a little grin. There's a tiny Autobrand on his collar, and Groove is nicely articulated. 13 points of articulation - mostly on the legs - await you if you dare to give this one a shot. He has 5mm fists and no weapons, but at least he can hold a gun if you have one. The leg joints on mine are a smidgen loose, but I don't think that's typical given how other toys based on this mold shook out.
Transformation is a snap - you can cram things in place without too much effort. There's a joke there, and I shall not be making it out of respect to you, the audience. You might have noticed a 5mm peg and a 5mm hole hanging off the sides - the peg lets the figure be mounted on the side of the vehicle mode of Hot Spot [FOTD #1,337] and his remolds. Why do you want to do this? No idea, but I was told that's why it's there.
The bike mold has rolling wheels and not much else. It's cute. It's a nice little bike. There are nifty painted details like an Autobot face in a little star, so it's cute enough.
If you're really messed up, you work as a designer who figured out how to basically contort this robot into a weirdly-posed mass of parts on the chest of Defensor. It kind of works, and it's kind of weird. If you leave it off, odds are you'll never miss it - and you have to position tabs and parts correctly (and not necessarily matching the instructions) too. This may hurt your compulsiveness if this matters to you. I'm glad Hasbro found a way to integrate toys into a larger whole, but at the same time you could save $10 on your combiner budget and not notice its absence.
I'm obsessive enough about these guys to have to recommend this. It's an acceptable toy by itself, but it's not as much fun as the non-combining Thrilling 30 Legends, and it feels like something of an afterthought. It doesn't hurt, it doesn't help, it's just there if you want it. And it incorporates Groove on the new team, which is arguably better than leaving him out completely (unless you got the deluxe one and you probably didn't). Prices on this one dipped a lot online so if you can get it cheap - $5, give or take - it's totally worth it. At $10 you'll probably begin pining for the basics of Beast Wars.
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