The Transformers Thursday Hostage Crisis is over and I’m finally free to look at figures that are not Bayformers. I was planning on the event culminating in some kind of review of Age of Extinction, but the fact that I walked out on it about two hours in should adequately express my feelings on the matter. Today I’m cleansing the pallet by going back to the refreshing goodness of the Generations line. I’m actually looking at my first Generations Legends figure. This is a sub-line that I had all but ignored until getting pulled in by reading some of the reviews over at My Life in Scale some time last year. The pictures alone made me pick some up and they’ve been kicking around and waiting to be opened for a long while. Let’s check out Optimus Prime and Roller!
I really dig the packaging on these little guys. It’s got that great Generations deco complete with the G1-style grid and some bitchin character art. The bubble displays Prime in his robot mode beside his little robot buddy. Are we actually calling these things Targetmasters, Hasbro? Well, screw it… I am! The back panel has Tech Specs and also a biography that just covers Roller. I guess at this point Hasbro assumes everyone knows all there is to know about who Optimus Prime is. Except Michael Bay. He thinks Optimus Prime is a murder-happy psychopath. Oh wait, I said I wouldn’t talk about Age of Extinction. My bad. Let’s start with Prime’s vehicle mode.
As expected, Prime is a semi-truck cab and a flat-nosed one at that! Despite the extensions on the back of the roof, this alt mode works well for me as a classic G1 version. There’s a surprising amount of detail in the sculpt for such a little toy. The front of the cab, in particular, looks fantastic, with a fully realized grill and even windshield wipers and the silver, yellow, and metallic blue paintwork against the red and blue plastic makes for a bright and vibrant figure. I’d dare say this little guy has better paint and overall coloring then a number of Deluxes and Voyagers that are in the aisles right now. There’s also a peg hole on the top so you can plug his rifle in there if you want. When you get down to it, he’s just a neat little truck.
Transforming Prime is very similar to his old G1 toy, which is a testament to how simple and effective some of that old school engineering used to be. It feels just right for a figure in this size, with maybe just enough complexity to surprise and impress me. I was going to start out by remarking how great this robot mode looks for a Legends figure, but in honesty, I think this Prime could be up-scaled and still look great as a Deluxe. As with his alt mode, Prime’s robot mode is packed with sculpted detail and the coloring is nothing but gorgeous classic Optimus Prime through and through. The figure allows for a few minor tweaks in robot mode. The shoulders are hinged so that they can be flared up, or if you prefer, you can just leave them in the vehicle mode position for a cleaner silhouette. Similarly, the two halves of the chest can be pushed together for a more classic look, or you can angle them back to show off the tiny Autobot insignia for the IDW comics inspired design.
As for articulation… Legends Prime features ball joints galore! You get them in the neck, shoulders, elbows, hips, and knees and a swivel in the waist. The result is a very fun and poseable little figure.
Roller, Prime’s little Targetmaster chum, is a six-wheeled off-road vehicle with a giant gun on top. The gun detaches to become Prime’s Buster rifle and Roller can transform into his own robot mode. Now, I say “transform” but really all you’re doing is standing him on his end and pulling out his arms. It’s a design that is even simpler than the Minicons, but that doesn’t make it any less welcome. It’s just neat to have a Roller toy with a robot mode.
Roller also has his gun mode, which is a conversion slightly more involved than his robot mode. Everything shifts at once and the result is a pretty decent looking gun, but one that I feel is just ridiculously too big for the Legends Class figure. But fear not, the gun is pegged to fit the bigger figures. I tried it out with my Deluxe Orion Pax figure and I think it works quite well.
I’d say the old adage, “better late than never” certainly applies here. This figure is definitely an older release, and while it took me a while to give him a try, I have to say that this little guy impresses me on every conceivable level. He may be small, but he’s a lovingly crafted toy with great colors, a satisfyingly detailed sculpt, and articulation that makes him tough to put down. He’s going to be living on my desk for a long time. Next week, we’ll keep the Legends train rolling along with Bumblebee and Blazemaster.