Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Transformers United Rodimus Prime Part 1

Reissue in disguise

A new Transformers action figure review after Transformers Prime's Deluxe Class Starscream last month. ^^

This is Rodimus Prime from Takara Tomy's Transformers United series. ^^ Unlike the three Transformers figures I recently hunted down, this version of Rodimus is actually a fairly recent release - it came out in January this year. However, part of the story about me getting it is quite similar with the three older releases. It's the same old same old didn't-get-the-first-one-so-struggled-to-get-it-years-later story, with a twist in the middle. XD

Calling it a new item is technically right, but I prefer to call it as a mere reissue of the Henkei! series that came out not too long ago. Rodimus Prime in the Henkei! series, called Hot Rodimus then was a figure I really liked, almost to the same level as its Kiss Player reincarnation, which is a completely different product series I don't want to get into here. Even though I liked it very much, I didn't have budget allocated for it back then. Eventually, like many other collectibles I missed in the past, I regretted not getting it after it went out of stock, and started looking for it, unsuccessfully I should add. ^^;

When I heard about the news of this Transformers United version coming out, I got really excited about it. A different series it might be in, it's still the exact same design I liked back in the Henkei! series. ^^; I missed that one years ago, I'm not going to miss this one again. The price is rather affordable too (to me now) - 2,940 Yen (inclusive of tax). I certainly didn't hesitated on pre-ordering it right away. ^^

And trust me, now that I have this version of Rodimus, sooner or later I'll see one or two unopened Henkei! Hot Rodimus offered on some forums to give the story a sarcastic and ironic twist at the end. ^^; Hopefully I won't punch a hole through my monitor when I see it. XD

Then again, I suppose it's fair to put it in a new series, because this version of Rodimus actually features many "downgraded" designs as compared to his Henkei! predecessor. ^^; The gold plated spoilers are gone, so are the detailing on quite a few other components. I don't know why there should be gold plated spoilers on a super car, but it would look really good on the figure in my opinion. ^^

The overall detailing and paint work give Rodimus a much closer resemblance to his appearance in the cartoon show, which is one of the main attractions of this Transformers figure I guess. Still, to me, that's quite a long stretch. ^^; Rodimus never looked this bulky and macho in the cartoon series. I always remembered him as the unlikely hero who ascended to the highest Autobots position because there was nobody else more worthy. ^^; He was tall and rather skinny (or sleek) in the show. The Masterpiece version is the infinite best representation of Rodimus in my opinion. This Transformers United version on the other hand, only has the design silhouette, color scheme and flame pattern on the chest to bear the resemblance to Rodimus from the cartoon series. ^^;

On a separate note, Takara Tomy seemed very "convinced" that this "re-imaging" would mean that Transformers United Rodimus Prime is a brand new release. They even gave it a new price tag that is 800 Yen more expensive than his Henkei! predecessor. ^^; The price sure is another reason to make me regretted not getting the Henkei! version when it was still around. ^^;

While I'm a bit disappointed with this "reissue" of Rodimus which took away some of the elements I love about its Henkei! version, I'm still glad to have it. It's still the same action figure, basically. Also, with this release, I'm quite convinced the Henkei! version would never see a reissue (as in real genuine reissue ^^;) anymore. So, I'm definitely pleased to be able to get this version before it's gone as well. ^^

(Left) Illustration of Optimus Prime versus Megatron on top of the blister pack.
(Right) Technical Point is 3 - above average. I wonder what does the number represent exactly. Is it transformation difficulty? or mechanical details? or articulation design.

"Limited Quantity". Not sure how true is that. ^^;

The blister pack allows the figure to be seen very easily and clearly.

Very simple side design.

Introduction of the character on the back of the box.

Preview of another three Transformers United releases at the bottom: UN24 War Path, UN25 Tank Megatron and UN26 Thunder Wing.

(Left) Product information in Japanese on the bottom face of the package.
(Right) The manual that is placed between the figure's plastic tray and the blister pack's shell can be seen.

Comparison with Transformers: Prime "First Edition" Deluxe Class Arcee's packaging.

Package opened.
The blister pack is cut on its sides using scissors before the plastic tray containing Rodimus and its instruction sheet can be removed.

Top view of Rodimus in vehicle mode on the tray.

Bottom view of the content.

A very simple Transformer eye (?) as the backdrop.

The folded instruction sheet removed from the package.

The unfolded instruction sheet for the transformation sequence.

A lucky draw ticket I believe.

The flattened cardboard label for the top, side and bottom faces of the plastic container.

The removed strings that bind the super car to the plastic tray.

A straight-out-of-box display of Transformers United Rodimus Prime in vehicle mode.

Rodimus's blaster.
The clear blue rocket flame/blaster laser effect part looks really good. ^^

A gimmick available on most Transformers action figure: pressing the orange lever on top of the blaster will launch the effect part.

In vehicle mode, the blaster can be attached to the rear end of the super car to become its thruster.

More images of Rodimus in vehicle mode coming up in the next posting. ^^

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