Last time we looked at one of the single carded figures from Hasbro’s new Cyberverse line of Transformers, but this time we’re going to delve into what this line is all about… The larger sets. Cyberverse is all about making Transformers small enough to interact with transforming playsets (for lack of a better word… I guess they’re actually more like vehicles) much like some of the old G1 Micromasters did. It’s a great idea that revisits a really cool element of the Transformers, while still maintaining the core gimmick… things transforming into other things. These larger sets come with a Cyberverse figure and their larger interactive piece. So let’s check out Starscream and his Orbital Assault Carrier.
The set comes in a window box that strikes me as being somewhat similar in size and configuration as the Human Alliance toys. The artwork features the cool new Dark of the Moon deco and boasts that the contents are a “3-in-1 action set!” Starscream comes mounted in his robot mode with his Orbital Assault thingy taking up most of the interior’s real estate. The toys are set against an illustrated insert of a cityscape burning in typical Michael Bay fashion. The insert can also be taken out and folded into a cool diorama background in the same way Habsro has been doing it for some of their other lines. I don’t think the background suits these toys all that well, but it’s cool enough that I’ll probably save it for some other figures. Also included in the package is a missile and a folded instruciton sheet.
Let’s start with Starscream. Remember how I gushed about Ironhide and how awesome he was for such a little figure? Well, I won’t be doing that with Starscream. He’s not terrible. He’s certainly better than the Legends Starscreams, but he’s nowhere near Ironhide in terms of ingenuity of design. I don’t know if Hasbro is including dumbed-down figures with the larger sets as cost, but I guess I’ll find out as I pick up more of the Cyberverse toys. It could also be the difference between the so-called Commander figures and the Legion figures. It’s all pretty confusing. Either way, if I bought this Starscream on a single card for eight bucks, I would have been severely pissed off.
Starscream’s Raptor mode is about what I expected, very kibbletastic. The top of the jet looks ok, but look at it from any other angle and you can see all the robo-baggage he’s carrying underneith. He also does not hold together very well at all. On the up side, Hasbro did a decent job reproducing all his tatts. In robot mode, things are only slightly better. He looks ok, but the panel that folds up to become his back doesn’t want to stay folded up, as it doesn’t lock into anywhere. He lacks the intricate details of Ironhide and just looks kind of bland. If Ironhide looked like a Deluxe toy shrunk down, Starscream here looks more like a Legends toy enlarged a bit. He’s serviceable, but not impressive, although he really doesn’t look like he belongs in the same line of figures as Ironhide.
So, I’m guessing Hasbro through most of their efforts into the Orbital Assault Carrier, as it’s actually pretty neat. As the box proclaims, it does indeed have three modes and all of them are solid enough, which isn’t always the case with triple changers. Starscream can also interact with each mode in a different way.
The in-package mode is the Assault Drone, which is just a big flying weapons platform. There’s a harness underneith that opens up and you can put Starscream in his Raptor mode in there, but he doesn’t really fit into place all that well and just winds up getting knocked around. It seems like they could have had some pegs or clips or some better way to secure him inside the harness.
Next up is the Carrier mode. This is the one I was most interested in, as it’s basically a little airborne aircraft carrier that Starscream can land on. It looks ok, although once again, despite a number of sockets on the flattop, Starscream doesn’t really lock onto it in any way. If you get him just right you can get his landing gear into the slots, but he’ll still slide off without much coaxing.
Last up is the Battle Station mode, which is the one for Starscream’s robot mode. It’s a weapons platform with a place for Starscream to stand when he’s in robot mode. It actually looks like some kind of crazy throne with armaments. I’m not sure how it works in battle, but it looks good and it makes Starscream look a lot more formidable than when he’s standing on his own.
This set was about fifteen bucks at Walmart. Not a bad deal considering the single carded Cyberverse figures sell for about half that. Does it sound like I was disappointed in this set? Well, I think it would be more accurate to say I was disappointed with the Starscream figure, and that’s probably mostly because I opened it right after opening Ironhide. Starscream is actually pretty close to what I expected out of these figures, but then Ironhide raised the bar a lot higher. The Orbital Assault Carrier is actually pretty cool, but I do wish that Starscream interacted with it a bit better. Nonetheless, I think the overall concept works ok, and I’m not deterred from picking up more of these sets.